Why Did I Release My Own Album? Twitter Made Me Do It!

A year ago, I was a writer/musician, sitting in my study working on my second novel. Having played with original bands for years – and coming close but never quite getting the elusive record deal – I had put my music away in a bottom drawer to concentrate on my writing.

Someone advised me that if I was serious about being a writer, I needed to get on Facebook and Twitter, and start a blog. So I did. At first, it was intended to be a blog about writing but I soon realised there were any number of other blogs out there about writing. Wondering how I could put my own slant on it, I decided to start posting some of my original songs. I called the blog “Rant, with Occasional Music” and started posting a song every Monday on what I dubbed “New Music Monday”.

In November 2011, I got involved in the #TwitterXmasSingle organised by Brenda Drumm. This was the first Christmas Charity Single organised and marketed solely through Twitter and other social media. I was one of the soloists on the song “Winter Song”. Organised, recorded and released in the space of two weeks, “Winter Song” reached No.1 in the iTunes chart on the day of release and No. 8 in the Irish charts overall. It was because of this – and the feedback and encouragement I’d received from people who listened to my music online – that I started to think about recording my own album and marketing it solely through Twitter and other social media.

I set up a studio in my house and recorded all of the songs on the album there. “Do You Dream At All?” is entirely self-produced and self-released. The marketing budget is a laptop, a twitter account and a Facebook page. In tandem with these recessionary times, this is DIY music-making.

On April 2nd, I realised a childhood dream, when “Do You Dream At All?” was released as a CD. None of this would have ever been possible without the support and encouragement I received from the Twitter community and the readers of my blog, and it shows – once again – the power of social media, and the ever-changing landscape for the creative artist.


You can listen to samples of the album and buy the CD here: www.cdbaby.com



7 thoughts on “Why Did I Release My Own Album? Twitter Made Me Do It!

  1. So glad that you’ve accomplished this and happy to say I enjoy your CD. Where would we be if we didn’t have the guts to go for it? No where! best to you in future pursuits, Derek 🙂

  2. It’s amazing the influence this social media lark can have! I congratulate you on your achievements. I have gone from someone who just took up writing because of personal circumstance and within the space of a year completed a novel and now am onto the second one…
    My next project will hopefully to follow your example and record some of my songs and get them out there…as always it’s finding the time…to paraphrase Lennon ‘life is what happens when you are planning other things’. Somehow the online community encourages one to DO rather than just think about it…it isn’t always a case of a bunch of people staring at computer screens and not accomplishing anything…
    Well Done to you sir…
    (When is the UK tour?)

    1. It really is amazing what you can achieve through social media, Simon. If you have songs there you want heard, I’d say go for it!

      Oh and I’ll keep you posted on the UK tour 🙂

  3. Every Monday, when I get to my computer ad see one of your posts, I still get a thrill. Experiencing your creative process has been illuminating, inspiring and instructive. I look forward to your posts, your musical take on songs and your original work. Keep it coming, please!

    1. Ah, thank you so much, Amy. Knowing there’s people out there like you who are so receptive to what I’m doing makes it all worthwhile. And your comments, thoughts and interactions with me give me such a buzz!

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