ARTIST NAME:  Barley Station

SONG TITLE:  Like Destiny

ALBUM TITLE:  Back There Somewhere

RELEASE DATE:  September 14th, 2017

GENRE: Crossover

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Tell us your real names, country of birth and childhood experience.

The core of the group is Randy Wayne Belt and Brian Kious. We were born in Missouri and Texas in the USA.

Our childhood was full of music. Music is like the soundtrack to life.

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Tell us your academic qualification.

Randy:  We are totally unqualified for this job! Are we hired? Actually Brian has a degree in Chinese Studies! Totally not related, unless we tour China, which is possible.

 

Brian: Don’t forget my degree in Criminal Law as well!

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Elaborate on your music career, experience and skills, and your future goal.
Randy:  Brian and I have been playing, singing, and recording together for about 15+ years. We’ve put out three albums, dozens of singles, and toured. And we’ll just keep doing that.  In the studio and on stage we are both multi-instrumentalists. Often you’ll find me on guitar or bass guitar.  I’m left-handed and learned to play guitar right handed and learned to play bass left-handed so it sometimes confuses people.  I’ll do some piano and keyboards in the studio as does Brian, but his main staple is guitar and throw in a mandolin and harmonica, and occasional banjo on top of everything else.

 

Brian: It’s been a transition of begging for attention to writing songs that serve as catharsis. I know we’re in the business, but I try to hide that from myself. I’m in the musical matrix, ha ha.

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Tell us your genre and idea behind the song.

Brian: Genre? Mystery/suspense

 

Randy:  We don’t have a genre really. We get lots of labels but often a new genre has to be created to accommodate, so we just go with “Crossover”. We blend and mix genres.

A song like “Damaged Goods” for instance has a more of a rap cadence with an old school R&B rhythm but colorations of mandolins, rock guitars and bass. So it is no any one thing. That annoys a lot of reviewers but Ryan Adams annoyed reviewers too so we are in good company.

 

Then there’s the song “Younger Summer Memories” which has blown up in radio this year climbing a ton of charts in AC40, Top40, Country, and who knows what else. The song was actually inspired by Johnny Cash and is a blend of Americana, Country, Pop, and Rock.  Some songs are more genre-oriented than others, but more often than not, they don’t fit in. We are musical misfits and that’s OK by us.

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Tell us how to run a record label based on your experience as an artist.

Randy: Well I do run our own label actually.  You just have to use the same services and approach that the bigger labels do. Test marketing, Understanding your niche and audience, networking.  Then you have to let the artist be the artist. Let them develop. Don’t expect instant success, work for it!  It takes years to build a business.

 

Brian: Randy’s the business mind. I show up, record, play, and then frolic in the nearest meadow.

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Tell us how you are promoting your music.

Brian: Having a loose ability to communicate in Chinese allows me to reach out and network with fans in China, Singapore, and Malaysia. So that’s the eastern strategy.

 

Randy:  One person at a time. Building relationships with people not spamming everyone constantly with “hey listen to my song!”  That’s so annoying. Promoting as a label is a whole other thing.  Build teams and community and work together with those people who are positive and have good team energy!

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Share your press release and reviews with us.

 

Here are some favorite reviews and accolades:

 

National Radio Hits – Top Indie Band Rises

March 21, 2018

 

“BARLEY STATION is fast becoming one of the top new independent bands at radio.

They are already closing in on our Top10 at AC40 with their debut single “Younger Summer Memories” which is also #1 “By the Vote” for a third week. In addition, the red-hot single has now crossed over to Top40 where it ranks 2nd “most added” just ahead of the monster single from Taylor Swift.”

 

“Classic country rock with hints of folk.

This is a refreshing turn from all of the pop country that is poisoning the airwaves right now.”

– John Farley

Sophisticated Ape Radio

 

“This group always brings top drawer tunage.”

-Music is Truth

Station at Indie Music People

 

 

“It’s clear that this is a band that is going in a consistent, forward

direction and show no signs of stopping.”

-CA Marshall

Starlight Music Chronicles

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List the radio stations, television stations and blogs that have aired or featured your new song.

It’s too numerous to list. We have been on hundreds of Spotify playlists, hundreds of terrestrial and internet radio stations, and had our video for Younger Summer Memories played on programs carried by companies like NBCUniversal, Comcast, FiOS, CableVision, Time Warner, RCN, ATT Uverse, Verizon FiOS, Charter Communications, etc.

 

But we have a few very interactive indie stations we would mention for being so supportive of us and other independent artists like the folks at Big Time Radio, Music Mafia Radio, KB Radio, Lonely Oak Radio, Front Range Radio, and others.

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State the names of other members of your band, music producer, crew or music video director.
Randy:  We have added a drummer recently – Tony Buffa.  Brian and I do much of the producing and I am the mixing engineer, something I have been perfecting for many years. Brian and I are the core of the band.

 

Brian:  Our video director for the song “Younger Summer Memories ” was Poppy Zhu.

Our leading lady in that video was Fan Wenjie. We’ve had in-studio technical help from Benjamin Ash and Alan Mayer.

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Elaborate on the song and music video.

Like Destiny doesn’t have a video yet, but Younger Summer Memories – well you just have to see it. It was a fun summery kind of video, just like the song.

 

Here’s a link to it:

YouTube

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Tell us what makes you unique from others.

Randy:  Well, we tend to have people create new genres for us because we don’t fit with any one thing. We don’t follow trends. We are cognizant of them but do not concern ourselves with that. We do what we want to do and let the song we write tell us how it should be built in the studio.
Brian: Wit, charm, sparkling dinner conversation.

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Tell us your weakness and strength pertaining music.

Brian:  Weakness – I can’t stand the sound of my own voice. Also, peanut butter.

 

Randy:  I can’t stand the sound of peanut butter either.

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List your five favourite songs including the artists.
Brian:
my favorites rotate. Currently, “The Human Touch” by Howard Jones. “Just Smoke” by Mumford & Sons. “White Dwarf” by A-ha. “Überlin” by R.E.M. ” Narcissus Is Back” by Christine & the Queens.

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Tell us your position on “Do It Yourself” and signing to a major label.
Randy:
  It has always been my position that a major label is not a solution or an end.

I see them as there to co-ordinate things when do-it-yourself is no longer manageable.

An artist’s goal should not to simply be signed to a major label and “make it big”. The goal should be to find your audience, find your fans, find who YOU are as a band.

 

A big label works more like a big loan company. They are loaning you money (often).

To invest in you and hope for a return on investment. 85% of the time that doesn’t happen. The artist gets tested in various markets of radio, playlists, etc. and if they don’t go over well, they get dropped. It doesn’t matter if you spent $50k recording, promoting, and all of that, you are still going to pay back the loan.  Plus you don’t want people who put the money up pulling the strings. How can you be independent and have puppeteers?

 

I’m not opposed to the major labels so much as I don’t think they are necessary until you reach a certain level on your own. You need to show you can build your own business if you want to seriously convince someone it is a good investment.

 

Your band is your brand. And I know a lot of people don’t like the word “brand” but I think a lot of that is paranoia about “the man”. What is it that identifies you? What makes you unique and different? Who ARE you as an artist or group? THAT IS your brand. And having a good logo is part of that identification. Look at the best well known band logos in history. Very memorable identifiers.

 

We have always been musical misfits, but I think that is the draw. People are GLAD we don’t sound like everyone else.    It’s good to know what’s going on and tap into what’s good about it, but it’s not good to try to be something you’re not or be forced into a box.

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Tell us other activities you are pursuing apart from music.
Brian: I continue to study Chinese and try to keep up on headlines in China.

Also, I recently revitalized my love of collecting baseball cards through my son.

 

Randy: Everything is related to music somehow. Cat training?

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List your various works and state the official date of release.
We have 3 full length albums: “After All”, “Damaged Goods”, “Back There Somewhere” and we are working on the fourth LP.  Then we also have a number of singles that do not appear on albums.  There is the most recent “Borderline” (March 2018) which is a rock cover of Madonna’s big hit.

 

Another single was called “Just Begun” (Jan 2017), another one called “I’ve Got News” (2015), and we released a bunch of single versions of songs from 2015-2016 that are slightly different from the album versions of some of our other songs from “Back There Somewhere”.  Then is “Treacherous” (2016) which is an acoustic oriented cover of Taylor’s Swift’s song from the ‘Red’ album. Then another acoustic oriented cover of the Ryan Adams penned song “When the Stars Go Blue” (2016).

 

In addition to releasing “Back There Somewhere” on September 14, 2017, in October we released a French version of one of the songs from that album that was retranslated and re-titled Baisers voles (Stolen Kisses) and to top off the year with a bang, in December of 2017 we released a Christmas/Holiday song called “Hear The Christmas Call”. So it was a busy year and 2018 is even busier!

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State your artist’s name and elaborate on it.
Barley Station.  Barley Station was simply a way of describing something kind of earthy (Barley) and a gathering place (Station). Despite what a lot of people think, it actually had nothing to do with alcoholic beverages.

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State the title of the song and the meaning.

Like Destiny. It’s just one of those kind of songs that explores the possibility of finding that one right person or situation and it all just fits together.

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State the title of the album and the reason for choosing the title.

‘Back There Somewhere’ is the title of the newest album.  It represents a place where all of our memories are and what makes us who we are but doesn’t hinder us with who we shall be.  We are made from our memories. Every moment that passes soon becomes a memory. Enjoy life.  Savor each moment.  That is the best way to describe the theme of the third Barley Station studio album which explores time and space in a unique way on each and every song.


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