Gospel music has become a large industry that incorporates a wide range of musical styles. The primary goal of a music promoter is to find gigs for the artist and raise the artist’s profile. If you are interested in promoting a gospel artist, count on spending lots of time on the computer and the telephone.
Put together a promotion packet for the artist. Include the following items: short artist bio, color photograph, three to four-song demo, press clips and reviews, and contact information.
Pass out the promo package at churches and musical events in your area. Live performance exposure and experience is crucial to an artist's career. Take advantage of local opportunities. Churches use gospel musicians for church services. Some churches host gospel concerts as well. Many towns and communities hold arts and music festivals, which are good forums for local musicians.
Send the promo package to gospel music festivals and other types of festivals. Music festivals provide an opportunity to introduce your artist to a larger audience. Search online for festival opportunities. Search under gospel music and Christian music. Bluegrass festivals and blues festivals often include gospel music acts in their programs. Bluegrass festivals feature Southern Gospel music. Blues festivals feature Black Gospel performers.
Develop an online presence for the artist. The Internet has become an essential promotional tool for the music business. Encourage the artist to develop hisown My Space page with photos, music samples, and up-to-date information. The artist should also have a website. Include a version of the promo package on the website with promo materials that a potential booker or venue can download.
Join professional gospel music organizations such as the Gospel Music Association. This will allow you to stay up to date about current trends in gospel music, expand your contact base, and keep you informed about performance opportunities for your artist. Many online opportunities exist for promoting the artist and for staying informed about the industry.
Put together a contact database. Include the names of churches, live performance venues, gospel music festivals, radio stations and television programs that feature gospel artists.
Target the artist to a specific audience. Gospel music has as much diversity as secular music. A hip-hop gospel artist won’t appeal to an audience expecting a more traditional style. Similarly, a younger audience may not appreciate older styles of gospel music.
Robert Russell began writing online professionally in 2010. He holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and is currently working on a book project exploring the relationship between art, entertainment and culture. He is the guitar player for the nationally touring cajun/zydeco band Creole Stomp. Russell travels with his laptop and writes many of his articles on the road between gigs.