Songkick data shows that long tail artists are touring more and are finding it easier to reach their audience to work out where to play.

Internet awareness of bands has made this scale of touring more viable. And necessary, as the record sales income won’t necessarily keep you afloat.

Is touring a key part of your strategy for ‘making it’? It can be and should be if you can build your fanbase and give it what it wants.

For artists known and loved by hundreds or thousands (as opposed to millions) of fans, getting signed to a label is no longer the defining moment it once was.

Instead of selling records, “making it” has become about finding the best shows to play. Every type of band, from mega-stars to garage bands and reunion acts, is spending more time on stage these days.

Songkick, a web app that can track the music you and your friends listen to and alert you when those bands are coming to your area, released key observations on Thursday from its treasure trove of U.S. concert data. The study proves that, as suspected, bands of all levels are playing more shows each year since ’07, despite a slight dip in ’09.

Read the piece and see the data.