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Stricter Guidelines and Rules for MIP Accounts on Music Xray

Posted by Mike McCready | November 8th, 2013 | No responses

As Music Xray has evolved, we’ve learned a lot of lessons. We’ve always had guidelines and rules for industry professional accounts but as our profile has grown and higher profile companies have joined the site, Music Xray has become a target for some bad behavior. The site must be a place where legitimate industry professionals and companies feel they are represented alongside other legitimate professionals. Shysters, hustlers, and professionals pitching their services to musicians are not welcome.

While we have always monitored for this kind of thing, we have begun cracking down on this behavior with some new zero-tolerance policies and we’re asking our community of users to help us police the site even more strictly than in the past.

How to open a professional account on Music Xray:

Professional accounts on Music Xray are offered via invitation. Professionals may also apply for an account by simply signing up and filling out a profile. However, at the end of the process, professionals must click the button to request approval for their account.

All accounts are reviewed by our team. Identities are verified and the authenticity of the listed opportunities are confirmed to the best of our ability. We have an increasingly strict screening process. For example, in October 2013 there were 160 applications for professional accounts but we only approved 24.

Professionals must keep in mind however that musicians are able to rate professionals and leave comments on their profile page and they can alert us by sending an email to support@musicxray.com if an opportunity is suspected of not being authentic. Such emails automatically will trigger a new investigation by our team of the industry professional and the account.

Our team will look at the communication and other behavior patterns of the professional during this investigation. If we detect issues with the professional account we will contact the professional to try to rectify the situation as a first step. However, if we deem the opportunity was posted in bad faith, the professional account will be immediately removed. Professionals may appeal this decision with us and appeals will be handled on a case-by-case basis.

Intolerable behavior:


Music Xray must stand on its reputation of hosting only authentic opportunities. If an artist is selected for an opportunity it must result in a commercial or exposure event for the artist.

Alternatively, it can result in a pre-selection whereby the selected song or act is further pitched for a final decision by another party. However, Music Xray will require the professional to disclose to Music Xray to whom the selected songs or acts will be pitched. In general, we will take this on face value unless we have reasons to be skeptical. For instance, if a professional who does not work directly with an major act is seeking songs to pitch to that act and we learn via other channels that the major act is not in fact seeking new material, we will open an investigation and will verify these pitches any time in the future the professional in question posts a similar opportunity.

Industry professionals must disclose in the opportunity descriptions if they (or the company they represent) is not the final decision maker for the opportunity. In other words, they will be required to state that selected songs and acts will be pitched to a final decision-maker for consideration.

Additionally, we will not allow opportunities to be posted in which selected artists are asked to pay for further interaction with the professional on the receiving end. Period. Professionals may pitch other services but none that are related to the submission itself. For instance, if a producer is offering an opportunity to for an artist to get their song produced, the selected artists should not be expected to pay for the production services. The producer may offer to produce additional songs for a fee but the initial selection must provide the artist with the service offered in the opportunity free of charge.

We want Music Xray to be a place where only real and authentic opportunities are offered and provided to artists and one where legitimate industry professionals feel confortable listing their opportunities and are not listed along side shady companies and professionals who attempt to use Music Xray as a place to troll for business and as a place to pitch their services for which they wish to be paid.

These are certainly not the only rules and regulations for industry professional accounts. We are in the process of updating all the terms of service for the site and will will post a link to them here on the blog once they’ve been officially issued.

Video Tutorial for Musicians & Their Teams on How to Best Use Music Xray

Posted by Mike McCready | October 11th, 2013 | 1 Response

Everyone knows that Music Xray helps you get your music to the decision makers and influencers of the music industry, but Music Xray does so much more. It turns your songs into opportunity magnets. It targets and acquires new fans for you while also estimating the number of submissions it is statistically likely to take to have your song or band selected for an opportunity.

Learn how to use some of the advanced features of Music Xray by watching this video tutorial:

New Feature for Industry Professionals: Trending Buttons & Music Search Alerts

Posted by Mike McCready | October 4th, 2013 | No responses

In a few days, Music Xray will release a new feature for industry professionals enabling them to see what’s trending on the site in each genre.

You will also be able to set a search alert enabling the site to notify you via email whenever the community of industry professionals identifies a new song that meets your search criteria. But be aware that other industry professionals may set the same alert. So, once you receive an alert it’s first come first serve or perhaps it will just come down to who makes the song owner a better offer.

New “Trending” Buttons On Industry Professionals’ Dashboard

Posted by Mike McCready | October 4th, 2013 | No responses

It’s never been more important for artists to enter their song meta-data such as genre and lyrics because these are two of the primary filters industry professionals apply when they pro-actively search for music from within their accounts. We increasingly hear of deals and contact from industry professionals who found the music they were seeking through Music Xray’s search engine. This is especially true for songs that have high ratings from multiple professionals.

In a few days, Music Xray will release a new feature for industry professionals enabling them to see what’s trending on the site in each genre. If you have not entered your songs’ genre it won’t be shown in the results.

Song to Opportunity Matching (S2O) is Back!

Posted by Mike McCready | September 29th, 2013 | No responses

Want to know what kinds of songs and talent these companies are seeking?

After more than a month on hiatus, Music Xray’s song to opportunity matching service (S2O for song 2 opportunity) is back and better, with over 50 new labels having uploaded seed songs that sound and feel like your music. If your music acoustically matches what they are seeking, you’re alerted via email.

Check it out by uploading a new song today.

Announcing Music Xray Day & Future Music Forum in Barcelona September 17-19, 2014

Posted by Mike McCready | September 26th, 2013 | No responses

It’s true. In September of 2014 Music Xray is inviting all industry professionals with open and active Music Xray accounts to a three day event, party, & conference in Barcelona. You’ll be hanging with top A&R’s, music supervisors, managers, producers, radio station program directors, label heads, and music tech founders and CEOs. You’ll hear insightful panels, keynote addresses, TED Talk-style presentations and some fantastic music. You’ll be wined and dined by some of the top companies in the business.

And if that weren’t enough, the conference coincides with the hands-down best weekend of the year to be in Barcelona as the city celebrates its patron saint with the annual multi-day celebration called La Mercè. Music in the streets, parties, incredible nightlife, and it all culminates with an impressive fireworks display that rivals New York’s 4th of July bravura.

Day 1 of the event will be an exclusive, invitation-only session just for professionals with Music Xray accounts. Days 2 & 3 will be a larger event with pre-approved participants, there to do business, mix, and network.

Industry professionals’ event fees will be comped by Music Xray and package airfare and hotels will be arranged at lower-then-typical rates.

Space is limited so if you are an industry professional with a Music Xray account and you are interested in attending please express that interest by sending an rsvp to rsvpbarcelona@musicxray.com or by leaving a comment below.

Stay tuned to the blog and our email announcements as we add speakers, panelists, and parties.

Heidi Merrill discusses how she got herself and her song on TV

Posted by Mike McCready | September 22nd, 2013 | No responses

See tons of Music Xray success stories here.

Why Do Submissions Have Variable Prices?

Posted by Mike McCready | August 11th, 2013 | 9 Responses

… and why is Diagnostics a required purchase for each submitted song?


Even though we love serving musicians, at its core, Music Xray is a site where over 1500 industry professionals combine their collective capacity to screen music. This helps them efficiently find the needles in the haystack.

In fact, by applying music-analyzing software and the collective screening efforts of 1500 industry professionals, Music Xray makes identifying high-potential (and opportunity-appropriate) music like finding a needle in a needlestack.

Previously, identifying that music has been a daunting task and social traction surrounding most music only surfaces a small number of obvious hits leaving most music with commercial value buried in web obscurity. Now, with over 1500 industry professionals pitching in to screen music daily, over 1,000 songs & acts per month are singled out for various types of deals.

The notion that content owners would pay a few dollars for a submission crystalized as we began to think about how to find the needles in such a large haystack. After all, today there are more than 11 hours of audio uploaded to SoundCloud every minute. Screening that much music is nearly impossible.

Song owner as first filter:

But when you place the song owners in the position of having to spend a few dollars in order to have a song considered by the industry, they must screen themselves. If one of their songs isn’t appropriate for the available deals or if they have low confidence in its ability to secure a deal at all, they decide not to submit it. This phenomena reduced the listening load on the professionals by enough to instantly make the impossible possible – and it cleared the field for the more serious bands, acts, & songwriters.

In other words, once much of the hay was removed from the haystack the needles became easier to find.

Our goal was to help the industry identify commercially valuable music quickly and efficiently. So, we needed a way to gather as much information as possible about a song quickly.


With Diagnostics, each song is sent to five industry professionals who actively work in the song’s genre. The professionals are chosen at random for each song from among a large pool of professionals who volunteer for first screening.

The results of Diagnostics enables Music Xray to draw the attention of other industry professionals to songs that are appropriate for a wide array of opportunities.

While remaining in competition with each other to identify valuable music for their needs, each professional essentially enters into a pact with all the other professionals on the site to listen to some new, unfiltered music each day (submitted by the song owners themselves) and rate the songs according to their attributes such as production, performance, and hit potential. If in the process of listening, they hear something they want to license or sign directly, they get first dibs.

Otherwise, the songs and their ratings go into a communal database where the professionals can see the collective ratings. With Diagnostics, each song is heard and rated by at least five industry professionals so when consensus around a song begins to form it can be identified through the site’s advanced music search engine (see image) or through alerts (like Google alerts) delivered to an industry professional when the site identifies a song that matches their alert criteria (e.g. energetic pop songs for a male performer with 120 to 130 beats per minute and high hit potential).



Diagnostics is like a GPS for a song:

Diagnostics additionally provides valuable information to the artist, letting them know quickly and cheaply if their song is likely to land a deal, how much effort it is likely to require, and where their song stands versus all other songs on the site competing for similar deals.

Other information is provided too, such as how much time has elapsed since an industry professional or potential fan has heard the song or how long it has been since any song was selected by any industry professional across the site.

All this information helps the artist know whether or not continued investment in the song is warranted. And by giving high-potential songs increased exposure to industry professionals Music Xray reduced the needed investment in a song before it is placed in a deal or the act is signed.


About Music Xray:

Since launching its online platform in January 2010, Music Xray has been helping the industry identify high-potential songs and talent through a combination of new technologies and crowd-sourcing techniques made possible by the Internet. The result is a rich database of information related to the characteristics and commercial potential of over 1.3 million songs by more than 130,000 bands & songwriters. More than 1500 invitation-only industry professionals contribute to the collective effort of filtering the vast sea of music created each year by musicians everywhere and to use the site to discover new music that matches current industry needs.

The site has been behind the selections of over 21,000 songs and acts including placements in major films, TV shows, advertisements, and webisodes. Songwriters and bands have singed major label deals, publishing agreements, management arrangements, and song placements with top artists.

See some success stories here.

Music Xray is backed by Digital Assets Deployment, True Global Ventures, & individual angel investors and is based in New York.

Moneyball for the Music Industry

Posted by Mike McCready | August 10th, 2013 | No responses

Collaborative Song-Screening Effort by Music Industry Enables Identification of High-Potential Music & Talent From Among the Millions of New Songs Created Each Year


Over 1,000 songs & acts per month (and roughly 21,000 to date) are selected for opportunities across the industry ranging from major label signings to placements in film & TV

By applying music-analyzing software and the collective screening efforts of 1500 industry professionals, Music Xray makes identifying high-potential music like finding a needle in a needlestack.

Millions of songs are created and released each year by aspiring musicians, bands, and songwriters. In fact, there are 11 hours of audio content uploaded to SoundCloud every minute. If only 0.01% of that music were of commercial interest that would equal 1 hour 35 minutes and 2 seconds of music the industry should discover everyday. And that’s just SoundCloud. Add in YouTube and every other destination for undiscovered music and the number grow significantly. But identifying that music is a daunting task and social traction surrounding most music only surfaces a small number of obvious hits leaving most music with commercial value buried in web obscurity.

In January 2010, Music Xray began inviting industry professionals and the record labels, publishers, radio stations, & film production companies they represent to register for an account. Now, with over 1500 industry professionals pitching in to screen music daily, over 1,000 songs & acts per month are singled out for various types of deals.

While remaining in competition with each other to identify valuable music for their needs, each professional essentially enters into a pact with all the other professionals on the site to listen to some new, unfiltered music each day (submitted by the song owners themselves) and rate the songs according to their attributes such as production, performance, and hit potential. If in the process of listening, they hear something they want to license or sign directly, they get first dibs.

Otherwise, the songs and their ratings go into a communal database where the professionals can see the collective ratings. Each song is heard and rated by at least five industry professionals so when consensus around a song begins to form it can be identified through the site’s advanced music search engine (see image below) or through alerts (like Google alerts) delivered to an industry professional when the site identifies a song that matches their alert criteria (e.g. energetic pop songs for a male performer with 120 to 130 beats per minute and high hit potential).



Additionally, Music Xray can alert individual musicians (from among the 130,000 who use the site) who have songs that sound and feel like music being sought by a particular professional. For example, a music supervisor for a Hollywood movie may wish they could license “Satisfaction” by Rolling Stones but simply doesn’t have the required budget. The supervisor can upload an MP3 of the original “Satisfaction” to their private dashboard. Music analysis software scans “Satisfaction” and compares it to the 1.3 million songs that have been uploaded by musicians into their own Music Xray accounts. Those who have similar sounding songs are alerted and directed to the interested professional.

“We strive to build remarkable tools for the industry and to apply new technology in innovative and practical ways; ways that solve real problems.” said Mike McCready, co-founder & CEO of Music Xray.

Professional Powered Music Search

The industry’s most powerful music search engine for undiscovered songs & talent


About Music Xray:

Since launching its online platform in January 2010, Music Xray has been helping the industry identify high-potential songs and talent through a combination of new technologies and crowd-sourcing techniques made possible by the Internet. The result is a rich database of information related to the characteristics and commercial potential of over 1.3 million songs by more than 130,000 bands & songwriters. More than 1500 invitation-only industry professionals contribute to the collective effort of filtering the vast sea of music created each year by musicians everywhere and to use the site to discover new music that matches current industry needs.

The site has been behind the selections of over 18,000 songs and acts including placements in major films, TV shows, advertisements, and webisodes. Songwriters and bands have singed major label deals, publishing agreements, management arrangements, and song placements with top artists. (http://www.musicxray.com/success-stories)

New York-based Music Xray is backed by Digital Assets Deployment, True Global Ventures, & individual angel investors.

Industry professionals’ tough ratings may be offset by better-than-average artists

Posted by Mike McCready | August 8th, 2013 | 2 Responses

Some users have recently written in regarding the integrity of the industry professional ratings on Music Xray. We especially hear from users when they get lower ratings than they are expecting based on past feedback they’ve received on their song.

The question users have is, “Are the professionals rating songs more harshly on Music Xray than they would elsewhere?”.

While we don’t have a definitive answer to that, our instinct would tell us they are. After all, it’s on Music Xray where they are actually thinking about the music from a commercial point of view. That doesn’t mean they’re benchmarking music against the Top 40 nor that they are always judging for mass appeal. It just means they are evaluating the commercial potential of the music and that may not be the perspective from which others were hearing the music previously.

By the same token, we would expect music submitted via Music Xray to be slightly above the mean in terms of quality and musicianship. After all, it requires a certain level of professionalism to invest in a pathway to success. Those who are unwilling to do so don’t frequent Music Xray.

Those two phenomena probably cancel each other out on the site. Tougher ratings criteria may be offset by a better-than-average user base.

As expected, the most frequent rating is “average”. Roughly 40% of songs receive a 3 star rating on at least one attribute, which is what we’d expect to see. While we can always make improvements to data collection and normalization, we’re pretty confident in the integrity of the data itself.

P.S. Even though Music Xray gives songs with high ratings more visibility to industry professionals, we observe many many songs with 2 star and 3 star ratings get selected for deals on the site. In judging the ratings you received on your song, be sure to pay attention to this portion (the one circled in red to the left) of the song’s Diagnostics.