Resources for Independent Musicians

Open book

Here’s a list of helpful resources for Canadian independent musicians and bands. Check out my Frequently Asked Questions section too.



FACTOR — The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings offers financial assistance in the form of grants and loans to Canadian artists and music companies.

MuchFACT — MuchFACT provides co-financing for Canadian music videos and music related content.

Canada Council for the Arts — Canada Council for the Arts offers grants to professional musicians, music travel and touring grants, music production grants and more.

Ontario Arts Council — The Ontario Arts Council supports artists and organizations in Ontario working in a variety of styles and genres of music.

Toronto Arts Council — The Toronto Arts Council provides funding to eligible music organizations and collectives through the Music Projects program and to eligible individual artists through the Music Creation & Audio Recording program.

Education — Explore the fundamentals of music in animated lessons, create custom exercises to improve your musical recognition, and use interactive tools to calculate notes, intervals, and chords in a specific key.

Berklee College of Music: Introduction to the Music Business (free via edX) — This course surveys key aspects of an evolving industry from recording, publishing, and distribution to legal issues confronting music commerce.

Music Publishing 101 — Music publishing remains one of the least understood aspects of the music industry. This free guide will help you make the most money from the music you write.


REAPER — REAPER is digital audio workstation software: a complete multitrack audio and MIDI recording, editing, processing, mixing, and mastering environment. You can download and use the full-featured evaluation version for free. Discounted licenses are also available. (Mac/Windows)

MPEG Streamclip — MPEG Streamclip is a powerful free video converter and basic editor. It can encode movies to many formats (QuickTime, AVI, DV, MPEG-4, etc.) and it can cut, trim and join movies. (Mac/Windows)

Lightworks — Lightworks is a professional non-linear editing system for editing and mastering digital video. Lightworks Free is the zero-cost version of Lightworks available for everyone. (Mac/Windows/Linux)

LibreOffice — LibreOffice is a free office productivity suite with a clean interface and powerful tools. Includes a fully-featured word processor and spreadsheet application. (Mac/Windows/Linux)

Vinyl Manufacturing

Standard Vinyl — Standard Vinyl offers vinyl record production, packaging, and promotion to Canadian musicians.

SAMO media — SAMO media is a vinyl and CD manufacturing broker based in Toronto, Ontario.

Music Sales and Marketing Tools

Guestlist — Set up an event and sell tickets online. Guestlist provides a polished experience for your fans, including automated emails, printable tickets, and mobile support.

Square — Accept credit cards in person or at your merch table. Sign up for a free Square account and get a free credit card reader to plug into your iOS or Android device.

Pay with a Tweet — Sell ​​your music for the price of a post on the social network(s) of your choice. With Pay with a Tweet you give people access to your content once they tweet or post about it.

Email Marketing for Bands and Musicians — A free email marketing guide for bands and musicians. Includes strategies for building an email list both online and offline.

MailChimp for Music — A guide on MailChimp’s email marketing tools for music. Topics include signup forms, RSS-to-email campaigns, sharing your music and more.

Radio Promotion

earshot! Reporting Stations — List of Canadian campus and community radio stations that send their charts to earshot!, Canada’s national campus and community radio report.

Airplay Basics (via earshot!) — How to get your music into the hands of radio station music directors.