Christmas cover songs are a great way to build name-recognition and increase album sales if done correctly. With all of the crappy pop-band covers that are no doubt infiltrating your shopping errands, why not put something out there that will resonate with your fans and be a fun way to remind people your band is still rockin’ around the Christmas tree this holiday? Here’s why you can’t risk NOT putting something out there:
1. Plenty of free public domain songs available. (Full list here.)
2. Wish your fans Happy Holidays and provide them with easily shareable content *think holiday video card
3. Can get on local media (TV, Radio, blogs)
4. New video content for your website, social media, potential agents
5. The band that you cover, if you choose to do so, may see your cover and contact you
6. Generate strong hit counts and possibly go viral
7. Increase album sales by promoting your Itunes, bandcamp, whatevs, in Youtube info listings below
8. Give exposure to an aspiring filmmaker. I highly recommend the Southern Souls live-off the floor style.
CBC Radio 2 has this really cool segment I listen to almost every morning called, “Under the Covers” where songs are completely transformed by the performers. You have control over how happy, sad, the tone, the softness, the everything. MAKE IT YOUR OWN SONG. And only try to cover a song that will make your other music look great alongside it. I mean, Justin Bieber became Justin Bieber by covering other people’s songs.
This Elwins Mariah Carey cover video is a great example of being able to draw in your audience, give them an idea of who the band is, how a band can make the song their own, and is just freakin’ adorable. You don’t need the fancy editing/camera work, just make sure the sound is spot-on.
Here’s a more live-off the floor style of Christmas video via CBC
Nitty Gritty on Music Licensing and Publishing:
“Cover songs on YouTube are, almost universally, non-commercial in nature. They’re created by fans, mostly amateur musicians, with no negative impact on the market value of the original work. (If anything, it increases demand by acting as a free promotional vehicle for the track.)…
Copyright law was intended to foster creativity by making it safe for creators to exclusively capitalize on their work for a limited period of time. Cover songs on YouTube don’t threaten that ability, and may actually prevent new works by chilling talent that could go on to do great things.” Full article HERE.
As long as you’re not selling this song without paying the mechanical license and claiming as your own you’re ok. Limelight, a partner of CD Baby is great for guiding you through this process if you are interested (Very informative link here.)
Later this week as a special holiday-bonus for y’all, we’ll tell you how to be successful with holiday-THEMED songs.