Over the past few weeks I watched with dismay and fascination as a number of things around me, being KB Radio and myself personally, developed and became more apparent to me. One side of this began a few weeks ago with a conversation I had with two artists, Patrick (Ghostly Beard) and Erin (Erin at Eleven) Patrick had a vision of indie artists working together more and more, not looking at the music industry as a competition between artists trying to succeed, but an opportunity to work with others in a way that mutually supports and promotes all. It is a lofty goal but as it turns out from someone who has a drive and a spirit like so few others I have watched him quickly build many connections and quickly grow his network of contacts in and around the music industry.
There is both a simplicity and an elegance to this idea and to see the positive effects that come from these contacts materialize so quickly is very satisfying. To see this kind of action and activity with no ulterior motives from someone is very refreshing to say the least.
I was involved with a group and an individual up until a few weeks ago when some information came to light and I felt I had to step back and away from that situation. I am not about to name the group etc, though I have not gone back to delete all the history so if you really want to know you can find out. The idea was that a number of stations provided their Top 10 Indie song lists each week to this group and from their they would be used to compile a Top 40 list. What a fantastic idea; as a station operator I could look at other stations lists and the Top 40 to possibly get leads on other great talent out there that I hadn’t been introduced to yet. This wasn’t entirely possible I discovered because none of the stations lists were posted as a group for everyone to see. The website showed a couple of examples from the past only, and although had a section to register and be a part, it never worked and was told it was not needed by the site owner and operator.
I was getting music suggested from the same person who coordinated all the lists and put together the Top 40 and one day it was pointed out to me that he had his own music promotion company. The way he operates and what he offers, I find offensive and it truly pisses me off, but he’s entitled to rip off anybody who is foolish enough to pay him money. What really bothered me was that on his Top 40 list the first week I looked, more than 33%, 14 of the 40 songs, were all the artists that supposedly represents. I could go on about this issue but it’s not important. What is important to the entire issue is negative side of the music industry. Here is an individual who is only in it for the money. There is absolutely no way it is anything more than a way to take money from Indie Artists and give the positive news, that is entirely fictional based on his creation only.
This does nothing positive for anybody. Apart from taking money from people who usually are not making very much to begin with, it also leaves them questioning the ethics of everyone in the industry. There are good people working very hard for nothing more than the love of music. How do you find these people is the first question? If you are someone who can chat it up a bit, than start connecting with other artists. Start talking to stations that are playing indie music. Most of all start keeping track of things. If stations tell you that you have to pay to play, tell them to FO. Keep your money. There are a lot of stations getting out to large numbers of listeners that aren’t playing games with artists.
Patrick’s idea I am sure is not new or unique. The part that is different is artists talking to artists, and why not. Who knows who you may end up connected with or the type of things you could learn or share yourself with the other person. Everyone has good and bad experiences, so why not share them. Someone told me the line that often the people you see on your way up with your success are the same ones you pass on your way down. The independent music scene is alive and thriving and bursting at the seams with talent and great music for everyone.
Here are links to the two individuals, Patrick and Erin that I started with. Check out both of their sites. They both have not only set up to promote their own music, but they are sharing music from other artists that they have heard. Both of their writing styles as well is incredible and take a minute or two to read their blogs.
Like so many things you have the ultimate control over your music. That control may not mean you are going to hit number 1 on Billboards Hot 100, but you can control the kind of people you associate with and work with in promoting your product. If you have this choice, why align yourself with people who are only working for themselves and not for your interests?
In a bit of a self promotion sense, KB Radio has no prerequisites about submitting music, to either station. The country station is looking for Country Music, and KB is looking for POP/Rock/ types of music. My suggestion is to listen to the station if you are considering submitting music. We don’t play Rap, so don’t send it, but if you listen and think your music will work, send it to us for both stations to firstname.lastname@example.org
I also now have help with the operation of both stations, and Veronica Phillips who joined the operation just a couple weeks ago is as interested and excited about music as I am. If you have questions of any kind, you can also email either of us. Our job is to play a combination of great music and work within the music industry. We don’t know everything, but are always happy to share what we do.
Email either of us
Al Yardy email@example.com
Veronica Phillips firstname.lastname@example.org