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Richhoncho's Songwriters Links



copyright  - the legislation, the options, how and when to register

rhyme schemes - list of the names and types of rhyme

song check list - A list of questions to ask yourself to help you decide whether you have written a classic song.

Chord Map in the key of C - Copied, with permission from Steve Mugglin's wonderful site "Music Theory for Songwriters." 

10 song writing blunders - a comparison between classic songs & indie/demo recordings - kindly supplied by Roedy Black.

36 rules for bands - a light-hearted look at things to avoid.

Publishing basics - kindly supplied by Irene Jackson

How to make a $million from your music - the secret information they don't want you to know.

How  to make a $million from your music Part II - A list of some of the more dubious ways to part a musician and songwriter from their hard-earned cash.


The Creative Bit :-

For the Wordsmith

For the Music Master

General Songwriter Advice Groups

Songwriter Web Rings

Fellow Songwriters with helpful tips/links

Musicianship/Tutorials etc :-






Ear Training

Online music stores

The Recording Bit :-



Home Recording Advice

Singer/Songwriter Services

Preparing for the studio

Recording Studios

Getting Heard :-

Places to upload your music


Critique Boards

Information Overload :-

Band Name Registration Sites

Miscellaneous Links

Lyric Sites

Further Link SItes

Genre Specific Sites

Odd Jobs/Humour

Online facilities- radio & magazines

Internet Radio


Some more useful addresses :-

Copyright/Royalty Collection Agencies

Songwriter & Musician Organizations

Legal Advice Sites

UK sites

Chat rooms and message boards :-

Message Boards

Chat rooms



Where a copyright is claimed be sure to ask the copyright holder, other than that, you are welcome to use any other page for your  own site, please let me know so I can add a link to you.  E-mail 

Richhoncho's Songwriters Links

How to make money from your music

I lied, but I was just checking who is awake. 

* This is where I tell you about the guys who are more interested in your money than your talent.*

There are people who make such extravagant claims, and here are a few ways to spot them, because nobody can sell you a magic potion, a secret formula to make money (or in their parlance "$millions") in the music business, and you know what?  There's guys out there on the net selling these "secret formulas," "the real truth of the biz," You can spot them, they park their car next to the CEO of ....... Records, photographs of the owner of the site next to some long-forgotten semi-star, photographs of the offices of record companies, long on testimonials and short on facts. There's 100s of them on the net that will tell you how to have a hit record once they receive your credit card details.

Here are a few little tips: -

If a site says something like "I worked with Madonna on a #1 hit."  This is probably correct, but it doesn't tell us in what capacity. If it had been as producer, arranger, songwriter or musician, don't you think they would have told us? The truth, they were probably tea boy, or the waiter who brought the napkin that she wrote the first draft of some lyrics.

So rule #1 is check the meaning, they are relying on you to put in the wrong dots.

Which leads us to the next piece of typical spiel, "They all laughed when I said I was going to write a hit song...but the look on their faces soon changed when they heard my song played on the radio day and night "

Did you spot the major point? Yes, he failed to mention the song or the radio. Could it be they mean one play in the morning and one play in the evening on Radio Lying Toe-Rag (audited listening figures: 3 including the DJ)

So Rule #2 is to check the meaning again.

Some of these salesmen, because their own knowledge is dreadfully limited get confused, I know of one so-called "Songwriter Guilds" that says the best way to get a hit is to record a cover version. What have cover versions got to do with song writing?

So Rule #3 is read through everything again before pulling your credit card out of your wallet.

Here's a bit more of the typical spiel found, "No matter how frustrated you get, never lie about anyone.... make sure your reputation is as a 'honest, ethical guy'.  All the guys that know me say I am 'honest and ethical.'  It is a dictum of advertising to emphasis the weakest point, so anybody who claims to be honest are probably admitting that they are dishonest.

Rule #4 is to be wary of sites that us words like "honest," "ethical."

Another line is rubbishing other sites, saying they couldn't find out the cost, a contact phone number, and no postal address. Generally this isn't true, It's just another cheap way of saying "I'm the real deal" Genuine business people don't make public pronouncements about competitors.

So Rule #5 is to move right along as soon as you see negative comments about somebody else.

A site might say,   "I'm always available on the phone?"  Let's face it; "the boss available" is laughable. Next time you fly Virgin, do you ensure the pilot is Richard Branson personally? "The boss available" tells you are dealing with a guy with a computer in his bedroom. 

So Rule #6 is if the CEO is available on the phone it's a very small company.

One of my favourites is the " no quibble, lifetime, guarantee."  This is not a generous offer, he knows that most that fallen for the spiel will be too embarrassed to make a determined effort to get their money back. On the other hand he doesn't need bad publicity so money back is an option.

So Rule #7 is always ask for your money back. Don't let the jerk get away with it.

 Can I tell you a "real secret?" LOL. They don't want intelligent customers, because intelligent customers will ask for their money back, this is why you will see lots of CAPITAL LETTERS, liberal use of highlights. This tells you the site is looking for people of, how can I put this politely - a lower IQ, perhaps? I don't need to explain why because you have already read this far, but

Rule #8 is the more highlights and capital letters there are, the less likely you are to have found a bona fide site.

Lots of pictures of the CEO? Who cares? You'd deal with the ugliest son-of-a-bitch if they knew what they were doing.

So Rule #9 is the more pictures there are, the less likely you are to have found a bona fide site. (Note: Richard Branson is the exception to this rule).

I was going to get my best friend to write me a testimonial to tell you how wonderful this site is but I thought you'd be too clever to fall for that one. Some of these guys have bought a round of drinks and are loaded with testimonials. If you read "Hey Joe, you've been a great help to me, D.. C...... (Member Number XXXX) it really means nothing whatsoever. You have a computer and know how to do a Google search otherwise you wouldn't be reading this!

So Rule #10 is to check the testimonials out independently.

You have found several sites all recommending each other. Don't be surprised, it's so easy to register a domain and put together 20 or so sites.

So Rule #11 is check out who owns the domains if you are suspicious.

What sort of person runs these sites? They are people who may have had success in the past and are now past their prime, or those that know they will never make it as real songwriters, musicians, booking agents, managers or other music business executives. In other words, they are egotistical, pushy, arrogant with no real talent. Furthermore if they were any good with their information don't you think one of the major record / publishing companies would offer them a fantastic salary?

So Rule #12 is check out the way the real music business works.

Why do they do it? Could it be because they are perfectly happy living on the proceeds of encouraging dreamers for a fee, which is the most they are really capable of? Why on earth does anybody want to help a whole load of total strangers to have a success from which they themselves will not benefit financially?  Hitting folks for nickels and dimes instead of going for the big one? It's just another pay-to-play way to make money.

So rule #13 is pay-to-play does not earn you money.

Have you found a site and you are not sure whether it is the real deal or just another scam site? E-mail and ask the questions, "what have you done in the past 5 years (any longer and it's irrelevant)," who in the business can I contact for references (again use the 5-year rule). Make certain your questions are answered clearly and concisely and without dodging your questions. Remember the more dubious the site, the more practiced they are at dodging the questions.

Rule #14 is ask the questions before you pay your money.

I've seen them say, you can always check the information out on the net. True, you see self-written advertisement links all over the net, but only because nobody has (not even me!) has the time to check the honesty of every site.

Rule #15 is don't believe all you read on the net.

We mustn't forget all the "hit records" they have been involved in. Remember a hit record can be what you want it to be. Your mother liked the song - it was a "hit record" for her.

Rule #16 is to re-learn the terminology.

The finance of the music business, how much do you think a successful manager or producer makes? I don't think I am giving any "real secrets" away if I say more than your average "$make a million from your music guy." 

So Rule #17 is you can make more in the music business by walking the walk than talking the talk.

Which reminds me, there are millions of people who think they have what it takes; singers who can't sing in key, guitarists who only know two chords, old-age pensioners who think the 60s are going to come back, people who have written their first song, don't you think somebody who was genuinely interested in helping people with a music career would check the possibilities first?

So Rule #18 is don't sign with anybody who doesn't check your potential first.

"We're not in it for the money" is a common cry of these guys, they tell you about all the charity performances they do, and they shout it at you. And because you are a caring person somebody that says he does work for, say disabled children, you think must be one of the good guys. Wrong, doing charity work can be a lucrative paid job in the music business, it also encourages people to buy records and sign up for dubious courses etc.

So Rule #19 is don't be mislead by "not in it for the money" claims.

Finally, let's be honest, we've all bought something that didn't live up to the advertising, whether it's a holiday, a piece of software, a car, or whatever, if you have signed up for one of these more dubious characters then the most important rule is :-

Rule #20 is to make sure you get your money back. Let me repeat that, Rule #20 is make sure you get your money back. 

You can e-mail me and tell me the story - all sources will remain anonymous. Who knows we might be able to put one or two of them out of business?   

Here comes the quiz. 

Would you trust somebody who uses the following gif?


  No, I wouldn't trust them either, it falls foul of nearly every rule above.