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Mar 29, 2010 | Peter Tanham | 1 Comment

Make A Website For Your Band - Using WordPress

Every musician needs a HQ on the web, a place to centre all your efforts, a place to call home! Your website will be the first place you post updates, blog posts, pictures and videos. You can direct your fans from social networks back to your site for more information and from there they can join your mailing list or buy from your store.

In this guide we’ll show you how to build a website using WordPress.

What is WordPress?

WordPress is a state-of-the-art publishing platform used to run over 200 million websites around the world. It powers websites of all shapes and sizes, from Yahoo, to eBay and The New York times. Even this site is built using WordPress! On top of that, it’s 100% free.

Why WordPress?

WordPress is simple to use, easy to update and feature rich, but by far the best thing about it is the number of people that use it. Because it is so popular there are thousands of people developing themes (styles), plugins and guides to help you make a WordPress site much better.

How Do I Get a WordPress Site?

There are two distinct versions of WordPress:

WordPress.com: This is the “hosted” version. This is the simplest way to get started. All you have to do is browse to www.wordpress.com and press the big “sign up” button. You’ll fill out some quick forms and come out with a website address that looks something like http://mybandsname.wordpress.com
WordPress.org: This is the “self hosted” version. This means that you run WordPress from your own website, e.g. http://www.mybandsname.com. This is slightly trickier process to set up but it is worth it if you have the time and patience. It will allow you a better level of control and flexibility in the long run, and gives you a better website address.

There are many free, easy to follow guides for installing WordPress (e.g. An idiots guide to WordPress installation and setup) and many hosting companies offer automated services to do it for you (e.g. Blacknight Solutions).

WordPress themselves give a great overview with “New To WordPress - Where to Start.”

Extras

Some recommended extras for any Musician’s WordPress website:

  • Gig Calendar - A nifty little plugin for adding a gigs/tour calendar to your site
  • Bandcamp - A free website that lets you create a “music” page for your website, with a simple music player and store. You can use bandcamp to run your entire music page (e.g. http://music.thebrilliantthings.com) or copy the “embed code” from their players and paste it into one of your WordPress pages.
  • Page Links To - Lets you set one of your menu items to link to an external page, such as your bandcamp page.
    Pro Player - embed your youtube videos on your site, but with a nicer looking player that matches your themes.

Help!

If you’re stuck with any part of WordPress you’re rarely more than a Google search away from the right answer. If you want one-to-one assistance (or just someone to do the whole thing for you), this is something that Amp can help you with. Just send us an email to [email protected] or leave a comment down below.

If you have any experience or tips to share with other musicians please let us know in the comments!

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