26 Feb 2020

How to Write a Music Bio: A Guide for Bands & Artists

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Your artist or band bio is often the first thing fans or press contacts will read about you. So it’s important to present yourself well.

 

Writing an artist bio might seem like a quick, throwaway task, but it’s worth taking some time to think carefully and craft something you can use time and time again.

While it’s true that, ultimately, you’re music will do the real talking, your bio is a big chance to make a first impression. Whether that’s in a press release, on your Spotify profile or on your website.

So let’s discuss how to write the perfect artist bio.


How to Write a Bio for Musicians

 

Use Social Proof

‘Social Proof’ can be the difference between an effective bio and a forgettable one. But what is it?

In layman's terms, Social Proof is the psychological principle that people copy the actions of others because they assume that those actions are right.

The Social Proof could be positive quotes or features from bloggers, influencers or journalists. It could be your follower numbers on social media or any awards you've won or achievements you’ve earned. Anything that showcases your existing popularity.

Demonstrating an existing fan base and success will directly influence how seriously people take you as a musician. 

 

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Tell Your Story

An interesting story can help people engage and relate to your music more deeply. You can break your story down into three basic parts:

- Where you came from

- When you began making music

- Where you are now

Try not to turn your story into an essay. Remember you should keep your bio snappy, so cover this in no more than one short paragraph.

 

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The Music Matters Most

Telling your life story is great, but in the end, it all comes down to the music. 

While great music speaks for itself, you should try to describe your sound as vividly as possible to make sure whoever is reading your bio gets a good idea of what to expect.

Make sure to state how you fit into a certain genre (or genres), talk about any key instrumentation (is your track guitar driven or vocal-led?) and perhaps list your inspirations or comparisons to well-known artists with a similar sound. 

 

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Consider the reader

Musician bios have multiple uses, so the bio you post to your Spotify account shouldn’t be the exact same one you use for a press release.

You should tailor a press bio to make things as easy as possible for the journo on the receiving end. Make sure to include clear links to your music with a call-to-action like ‘Listen here’.

Here’s a good test for your press release bio. Could a journalist copy and paste your whole bio and publish it as a feature? Many journos do exactly that to save time.

 

Keep the structure simple

Keep your bio brief and easily digestible. Two or three paragraphs and around 200 - 300 words total is enough.

Your first sentence is arguably the most important, so try to sum up the most important points in the first 20 to 30 words. How would you describe yourself in just one sentence?

Avoid writing really long sentences too. You need to keep the reader on the hook.

Keeping the advice above in mind, here’s a quick overview of how you could structure your bio.

 

Intro: Try to sum yourself & your music up in one sentence.

Your Music:
Genres, instrumentation, comparisons, etc.

Your Story:
Where you began & where you are now.

Social Proof: Quotes, social following, achievements.

 

Remember, you could change up the order of this structure, depending on the message you want to relay at the very beginning or very end of your bio. You know your music better than anyone, so it's up to you!

Do you have any questions or advice about writing a band or artist bio? Let us know in the comments below.