Independent Jazz Artist Gains Global Audience through Facebook

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While the Internet can be a confusing place to navigate for musicians, some artists have turned social media sites - and particularly Facebook - into a powerful boost for their careers. One such artist is Dutch-born Los Angeles resident Thisbe Vos, a jazz singer-songwriter who specializes in traditional jazz. Last week, her page reached 5000 Facebook fans - after less than a year.

Upcoming jazz singer Thisbe Vos uses her Facebook page to connect with new fans.

Jazz singer Thisbe Vos has been using her Facebook page to connect with jazz fans, gaining over 5000 new fans in less than a year.

Her music caught on and the page has since accumulated over 5000 fans from 48 countries.

For several years now, web-savvy musicians have been taking advantage of social media sites to connect with people all over the world, some with more success than others. One artist who seems to have been successful is independent Dutch jazz singer Thisbe Vos. Having previously performed and toured with a British swing band, she eventually decided to relocate to Los Angeles in pursuit of a solo career and the recording of a first album. In the end however, the majority of her audience proved to be elsewhere – all over the world.

Last February the singer set up her Facebook page and posted her first jazz music video of an original single. Her music caught on and the page has since accumulated over 5000 fans from 48 countries, some as far away as Burundi, Kazakhstan and Iran. This popularity in addition to the several thousand email addresses she collected along the way enabled the release of her first album Sophistication last September. Interesting side note - the first copy of the album sold at a pre-release eBay auction for $230.

It is also worth noting that despite a complete lack of a non-social media campaign prior to or after the release of the album, other media have also started to catch on. Through Facebook discovery alone, over 20 radio stations from Los Angeles to South Africa have requested and played her music, and she has received invitations for several interviews. In November, the album was proclaimed “vocal CD of the month” by an established jazz journalist, and several music blogs have also hailed her as an artist to watch.

The singer herself has also discovered jazz artists on Facebook whose work she likes, and she plans to team up with some of them in the future, for the mutual promotion of the jazz genre.

Some of her advice for would-be jazz musician Facebook-promoters: “There is a little bit of a learning curve as to how to best promote so I recommend reading about what others have done successfully. Also, engage with people sincerely and include them in your life, but use common sense when giving out personal information. Don’t give out information you feel uncomfortable with or wouldn’t want to read in a newspaper. I would also say, 'Check your ego at the door.' Don't ignore people when they compliment you, make a sincere effort to respond to every comment and let your fans know that you appreciate them. Many fans have been telling me that they don’t feel a lot of artists take the time to talk to their fans anymore. And they like that I do. And I do – I love my fans and getting to talk to them on a daily basis has been a real blessing for me."

Check out her Facebook page here: http://www.facebook.com/thisbevos.jazzsinger

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Alex Szita
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