Giving away vinyl promos, do people take advantage?
a few thoughts on promotional vinyl…..

I caught the tail end of an interesting Facebook discussion yesterday, someone posted that giving away vinyl promos was just helping people to fill up their record collection. I guess they must have had bad experiences in not getting the amount of exposure they were expecting from their freebies.

When I started this blog a few months ago one of my aims was to score some free vinyl, in return of course for a review, I didn’t expect something for nothing! It soon became apparent though from talking to record label owners, producers, DJs and artists that this was a little naïve. These guys and girls do this for the most part as a labour of love, making money is a bonus but not expected, exposure for their music is the point.

Costs, costs, costs….

I now understand better the costs involved in record production, the list is endless, artist fees, studio time, mastering, pressing, marketing costs etc etc etc. I never now ask for vinyl freebies and am very grateful and appreciative if they are offered. So if I asked for a freebie when I started out and offended anyone, I apologise now!

So what are your experiences, is the stampede for free records something you have encountered, unfortunately there will always be people who want something for nothing, that bad side of human nature will never go away. You would hope the reggae community with it’s love of the music at it’s heart would want to support fellow artists.


The guy I mentioned earlier in the Facebook post I think got his fingers burnt by sending promos to DJ’s, perhaps getting the track played only once and never hearing them play it again. To play devils advocate, you could view it that there is a lot of music out there, so perhaps one play is all you get, if the dance floor reacts positively then more plays will come, cream always rises to the top!

After ten months of blogging I have one free 12″ single courtesy of Mark Solution due to a chance meeting in the wonderful Pure Vinyl in Brixton and one 7″ courtesy of Simon and Flo at Tablet Records. These two records I value more than most in my collection, as I feel I have made a small contribution in helping to promote their music.

Preaching bit….

Forgive me for being preachy in this post (this is directed to a minority!) but perhaps next time you ask for freebies, ask yourself whether you are helping yourself or helping the artist. These guys are looking to break even as a minimum, and need funds to finance their next projects, not buy themselves a Porsche! Follow the rules, if you want the vinyl buy it direct from the artist!

What are your experiences, am I way off here, let me know in the comments, all views appreciated.


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