💡✍️ADN #049: The Morning After

adn049 album anxiety artist development artist development newsletter release Oct 29, 2023

Hey Friends -

Welcome to the Artist Development Newsletter.

Every Sunday, I send an email providing actionable tips for artists and industry on one area of the music business.

Today, I’m writing about “The Morning After” — My relief and anxiety surrounding the two album releases I had on Friday.

Let’s go — ->

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Friday, my band — The Cadillac Three, released our 6th album on Big Machine Records.

As did Rett Madison — Our first signing on War Buddha Records.

You can stream the albums below:

The Cadillac Three — “The Years Go Fast

Rett Madison — “One For Jackie

There’s a funny thing that happens with an album release that I thought I’d share while it is fresh.

In my experience, the morning after an album drop, there is a healthy dose of relief and anxiety.

Relief because the day you’ve been working toward has arrived, and the project you’ve been pouring your energy into is out the door.

You should:

  • Enjoy the moment.
  • Celebrate.
  • Reflect on the effort.
  • Soak in the satisfaction.

Conversely, all the anticipation will likely become a healthy dose of self-inflicted expectation.

  • What do people think?
  • How is the album performing?
  • How will the album perform in the long run?
  • Will this be the one that changes my life?

This is the anxiety creeping in.

Anxiety, because now it’s up to listeners to determine how they feel about your music, and it is up to you to continue to find ways to bring your album to a larger audience.

The moment someone finishes listening to your new song or album for the first time, they form an opinion.

It may be a subconscious opinion, but there is something in them that says:

  • “I’d listen to this again,” or not.
  • “I’d tell a friend about this,” or not.
  • “I’d tell a stranger about this,” or not.

There are two places you have control over this:

1. Before your music is released.

Most of your questioning should come in the creation process.

This is when you have complete control over your project.

This is when you can experiment until you’ve made something that can stand the test of time.

So remember, if you’ve made it to release day, you should already believe your music is worth sharing with the world.


Because every day, you could have decided not to keep going, but instead, you continued to take the steps.

The other place you have control over your music?

2. After your music is released.

It’s important to remember the day after your album comes out is the first time the world has ever had a chance to hear it.

In the case of TC3, we have been working on this album for almost three years.

It would be easy to think, “We finally did it,” and move on.

It would also be stupid.

Right now is our first opportunity to promote this album.

Today, we have 12 assets out in the world that we can promote however we please that we didn’t have presented as a body of work 48 hours ago.

The best perspective is to look at all the work that leads to your album release as the creation of an opportunity.

The day your album is released and every day after is a new opportunity to reach people with your music.

There are 1,000 more insights to unpack from these two releases, but they will have to be for another day.

I wrote a synopsis of how we came to discover and sign Rett Madison.

If you are interested, you can read it here.

Newsletter Recap:

  • Recognize and celebrate the accomplishment of writing, recording, and releasing your new album.
  • Remember, the day your album is released is the first day the world has heard it.

Which means…

It’s time to get back to work!

See you next Sunday!

Neil Mason

Artist Development

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