Old Crow Medicine Show

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OLD CROW MEDICINE SHOW – VOLUNTEER

 

RELEASED: APRIL 20, 2018

 

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Old Crow Medicine Show release their new studio album, Volunteer, via Columbia Records Nashville/Sony Music Australia. The album was recorded at the historic RCA Studio A and produced by Dave Cobb (Chris Stapleton, Jason Isbell, Sturgill Simpson).

 

Old Crow Medicine Show visited Australia in 2017 for their Blonde On Blonde (Live) world tour and performed sold out shows in Sydney and Melbourne.

 

Electric guitar will be heard on this traditional string outfit’s album for the first time since their 2004, when David Rawlings played a Telecaster on ‘Wagon Wheel.’

 

TRACKLISTING

  1. Flicker & Shine
  2. A World Away
  3. Child of the Mississippi
  4. Dixie Avenue
  5. Look Away
  6. Shout Mountain Music
  7. The Good Stuff
  8. Old Hickory
  9. Homecoming Party

10.Elzick’s Farewell

  1. Whirlwind

Barley Station

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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:

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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.

JJ Soul Band

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Artist: JJ Soul Band

 

Song Title: That Kinda Man

 

Album Title: Bright Lights (2008)

 

Genre: Blues(con)fusion, Funk, Samba

 

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JJ Soul Band

Pop/jazz/funk/blues and whatnot performed by an Icelandic band fronted by UK vocalist/songwriter/lyricist JJ Soul.
When living in Iceland for a brief period (‘93-‘97), JJ met songwriter Ingvi Thor Kormaksson and soon they began writing music together.

In 1994 they made their first CD, ‘Hungry for News’, with JJ Soul Band and in 1997, ‘City Life’. On both CDs the music is many-sided; Blues, R&B, Fusion, Rock, Pop and Latin, sometimes all in one (blues-confusion?). – JJ Soul Band mainly served as a vehicle for the songwriting team. The third CD was ‘Reach for the Sky’ (2002) and finally there was “Bright Lights” in 2008.

 

 

Latin Faculty

LATIN FACULTY – LATÍNUDEILDIN (2012) –

Reverbnation
One album. Nine vocalists perform on the album. The musicians include Jóhann Ásmundsson (of Mezzoforte) on bass who also engineered and mixed the album, Einar Scheving on drums, Vignir Thor Stefáns on kbs., Edvard Lárusson (of JJ Soul Band) on guitar, Birkir Freyr Matthíasson on trumpet and Stefán S. Stefánsson on saxophones who also produced the music.

 

THE COMPOSER:
Ingvi Thor Kormaksson is a native Icelander and has occupied himself with songwriting for the past 30 years or so and has to this day 12 albums to his credit. Altogether; he has had more than 150 of his compositions recorded by various Icelandic artists. He writes mainly in the AC (adult contemporary) genre, but jazzy chord progressions and bossanova rhythms are often featured in his music. Folk music traditions and blues can also be heard.

Collaborating with JJ Soul from Oxford, Ingvi has written music for JJ Soul Band’s 4 albums (see JJ Soul Band on Facebook, Reverbnation and MySpace).

LYRICIST JJ Soul is from Oxford, UK; artist, art teacher, singer, songwriter, lyricist, author of books.

 

 

Share your life story with us.

Ingvi: Icelandic. Used to play keyboards in dance and rock bands. Turned to songwriting around 1990.

 

JJ: Played in blues, jazz and rock bands in UK as a drummer. Was more and more asked to do the vocals, and when he moved to Iceland in 1992, became the vocalist/lyricist for JJ Soul Band, a group that stopped performing in 2005, but had only occasionally performed live because JJ had moved back to Oxford in 1997.

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Share your press release and reviews with us.

 

Reverbnation

 

“When I started playing the tracks I was very impressed by how smooth they sounded.” – Gulf Coast Music Review

 

 

“These guys from Iceland and that one guy from the UK really know how to put out a first class album that is both fun and sophisticated at the same time.”

Andrea Guy – ReviewYou

 

 

“With a stellar band and instrumentalists at hand, the boys from Iceland execute nicely.” – Ross Christopher – Awaken Music

 

 

“Excellent musicianship, fine arrangements, impeachable mixing …” – Dagbjartur Gunnar Ludviksson – Monitor

 

 

“… seldom heard more talented musicians gathered on one album… ” – Harold van Dorth – Bobtje’s Blues

 

 

“Good entertainment. JJ’s vocals are nice and warm. Blues and jazz flavoured music with a swing. Well written music and lyrics. This one will appeal to all those who like thoughtful and sophisticated music.” – Arni Matthiasson – Morgunbladid

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Narrate your experience while recording in the studio or while touring. 

Usually a lot of fun in the studio. Sometimes there were tight arrangements, and sometimes the sessions were more or less improvised.

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Discuss your songwriting.

Ingvi: Since my teenage years I’ve admired the music of Brazil; Jobim, Bonfá, Lins and many more composers, and all the wonderful vocalists. Bossanova and samba rhythms have been featured on my albums, even in the more blues or folk oriented ones. Finally I decided to write music for an album that would showcase Latin music only (Latin Faculty). There are two or three salsa songs on that album, but mostly the music nods towards Brazil and could also be categorized as AC or smooth-jazz.” (Ingvi). – As for JJ Soul Band’s 4 releases, they are blues oriented but leaning a bit towards jazz, fusion and funk.

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Elaborate on your future projects.

Occasional single songs, and perhaps a smooth-jazz album in 2018, with saxophone player and arranger Stefan S. Stefansson (who produced the Latin Faculty album, and has also appeared on JJ Soul Band’s albums) –

Reverbnation

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Tell us what you are doing to increase your fan base.

Not much these days.

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Tell us that point in time you wanted to give up on your music career.  

I studied library science and have always worked as a librarian along with being a musician/songwriter. I have often thought: to hell with it… (The music, I mean).

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Go into detail on how you make your instrumentation or melody.

I have often written music to existing poetry or lyrics, so the atmosphere and build-up of the text has much to do with where I go with the music. When writing I am mostly entertaining myself, and I do whatever I like. I am not writing pop music, although I have written straight (and strict) pop songs, so there are no rules. I like to include some surprises, and I sometimes use quite complex chord structures. I also compose Instrumentals / Smooth-Jazz.

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Tell us your complete understanding of music licensing.  

When dealing with publishers, all agreements I sign are non-exclusive, which means I keep on being the owner of all masters. The publishers and other music providers have my consent to license the music to other companies…or I do it myself without the help of others.

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Tell us your favourite genre of music.

The music of Brazil (all of it), Steely Dan, Herbie Hancock, The British Invasion: Animals, Kinks, Beatles, etc.

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Tell us the theme of most of your songs.

They vary.

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Elaborate on this song.

The subject Of “That Kinda Man” is a philanderer, the kind of guy that consistently has to make excuses for his bad behaviour, sometimes on his knees. It’s a medium fast, bluesy funk number.

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Discuss digital distribution and streaming.

It’s a new and different world, but not so bad for the independent songwriter.

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Tell us numerous ways that artists can boost their revenue.

I’m not good at this. I don’t bother much with social media nowadays. I have 70 songs with one publisher (non-exclusive), and a few with other publishers; tracks with lyrics in English or instrumental tracks. The other hundred or so songs I’ve recorded have Icelandic lyrics, and therefore only cater to the Icelandic public via record stores (obsolete?) or Icelandic National Radio.

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Tell us your opinion on self-training and enrolling in an educational institution to study music. 

I studied drumming as a young boy, and then as teenager started some piano lessons. At sixteen I studied jazz harmonics with Arni Scheving, the best jazz vibe-player of Iceland, and that got me going so I could play in bands as a keyboardist. In my late twenties I studied harmonics for one year at the Reykjavik Jazz Conservatory. That’s all, the rest was acquired by listening and playing.

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Go on at length on what it takes to write a hit song.

I am not into writing hit songs, although I did check out pop-songwriting at a time and have written a few songs that in the pop-category and some entered the Icelandic Eurovision finals. But the verse, chorus-verse, bridge-chorus or A-A-B-A approach to writing hits/songs has changed and I have no inclination to write modern pop stuff. I’ve recently worked a bit with DJ Intr0beats (House – Soundcloud, the sessions will probably be out on a British label later this year.

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State your artist’s name and elaborate on it.

JJ Soul Band refers to UK vocalist/lyricist/composer, John J. Soul.

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

“Bright Lights” refers to track #7 on the album.

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Dave Whitcher Saga

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ARTIST NAME: Dave Whitcher Saga

 

SONG TITLE: I Don’t Care

 

ALBUM TITLE: Gone Girl (EP)

 

RELEASE DATE: November 2017

 

GENRE: Indie Alt/Pop/Rock

 

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January 2018 update! Fresh out of brain surgery on December 19, the “Discipline” EP is finally out! 2 of these songs (“Caveman” and “Therapy”) are favorites of mine as a songwriter that were previously released in lo-tech, lo-fi, self-produced versions, so I am especially excited for you to hear them with full professional production.
Together with the November release of another 3 song EP, “Gone Girl,” This completes the 6 song package that was planned for 2017. There are well over a dozen songs in the pipeline for release in the fall of 2018. Stay Tuned!
For this project, I played all acoustic guitar tracks, as well as bass guitar. I also made a cameo vocal appearance on “Therapy” and did all vocals for “Caveman”. Thad Taylor returns with drumming mayhem and a big, aggressive sound thanks to a different production approach by Brett at The Sound Shelter in Franklin, Tennessee. Studio guitar master Chris Tench added all electric guitar layers and solos. He is a true beast! Kirby McNutt belted the vocals on all 3 tunes on the “Gone Girl” EP, with Jon Statham lending his pipes to “Discipline” and “Therapy”. I am so excited to share these new songs with you, more true to my songwriting self: dry, aggressive, and hard hitting.

I am a songwriter and guitarist from Tigard, Oregon. All of my songs start with me sitting on that old leather couch with my Tacoma Chief in The Man Room, my backyard studio. Then the tech begins, with drums being cut first in Tennessee, followed by basic guitar tracks and bass guitar recorded in Vancouver, Washington. Then, electric guitar tracks and vocals were recorded back in Tennessee, which is where final mixing and mastering also took place.

 

 

Tell us how you develop your sound and style to make it different from other musicians.

Sometimes, it may very well sound the same as other musicians, but I write in a wide diversity of styles, including a female perspective and voice. All songs come from the same place, a twisted, cynical, dark heart laced with eternal hope and optimism. And, my Tacoma Chief. I make the song fit the story and not the other way around. Sometimes it sounds like other things, sometimes it doesn’t, and sometimes two of my songs side by side don’t sound like they came from the same songwriter. This element makes becoming commercially viable as an artist like playing the lottery. My best shot is to write songs for other artists in a variety of styles.

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Tell us your opinion on the way new artists are coming up and the frequent release of songs.

So much noise, as a consumer, it’s challenging/daunting to weed through all the crap to find anything worth hearing more than once. You know what I mean, I’m sure!

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Tell us your experience as a musician.

I’ve been playing guitar and writing songs since I was 16. I have both formal education and real world education, which has led me happily to be a middle school math teacher. I write and record songs for my students under the name Megamath, which we sing in class from time to time:

 

iTunes

 

I also used the band name Gorilla for a few years, back in the Metal Days of the 90’s:

 

iTunes

 

I have also released lo-fi home-produced recordings of my work, which, due to my lackluster vocal skills, remain mostly unheard. That’s OK, though. I consider them a resume of songwriting and they were not intended to go anywhere in their current state.

 

Spotify

 

Bottom line: I can’t stop writing songs, they just come to me, and I welcome them. I have no expectations of notoriety.

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Tell us your opinion on streaming and digital download of songs.

If I were only in this to make money, I would be highly offended by this morphing of monetization in the music business. I just want to be heard. There are so many artists out there, falsely advertising their brilliance, it makes it tough to be heard. The consumer is becoming more selective, biased, and hesitant to give new things a chance, in my opinion.

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Tell us your goals and plans.

I plan on continuing to allow the songwriting disease to affect me; I have dozens of demos already in the can and am currently working on at least 10 new songs, 4-5 of which will be recorded and released near the end of 2018, through The Sound Shelter in Franklin, TN.

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Tell us five current artists that are your favourite. 

Kississippi, Beach Slang, The Early November, Royal Blood, Moscow Radio.

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Tell us your best song up to date and share the link.

This is truly a biased opinion as the songwriter, but I know that “Caveman” is autobiographical and the most honest portrayal of me both personally and musically. Dry, edgy, not commercial sounding at all, likely not to land on the radio or any big playlists, but honest and organic.

 

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Tell us your dream and hope for the future.

I hope that some artists out there hear what I do and “get it,” and that we can start a Bernie Taupin/Elton Johnish relationship, where I provide lyrics and chord progressions and they provide the artistry and commercial appeal. That will be fun!

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Tell us what has changed in the music industry.

Everything. Labels. Streaming. Sales. Albums. Cassettes. CDs. Touring. Recording. $$$. It’s the same racket, but with more participants and a different platform.

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Tell us your opinion on television/radio stations playing the same songs from established artists and giving little chances to independent artists. 

In an industry that’s all about the money, I believe that TV and radio stations could spend far less money and get far better music if they are willing to invest the time in finding it. It surely must be expensive to continue to pay X Renegades for commercials, for example, than it is to find the next thing coming.

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Tell us your opinion on using social media to promote music online.

At this point, I think it is all a bunch of white noise and the decision makers of the industry have ear fatigue. Looking back to when I would make the commitment and effort to buy an album, based only on my faith in the product based on past performances, we appear to be in a generation of music consumers that are too busy / lazy to click on a button to even give a song a listen. It is quite challenging. So, even though there is potentially more exposure to be heard, there is even more potential to be lost in the mix. There is so much self-promotion noise out there.

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Tell us what still motivates you to go on with your music career.

I write songs. They come to me, often while driving or performing manual labor around the house. They come to me, and I choose to act upon it. The alternative is to become even more mentally ill and/or find less positive and productive/creative outlets for my imagination.

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Tell us about you as a person.

I’m a nice guy. Believe me. After all, look who’s telling you. J

As a father of two daughters and a middle school teacher, I like to think of myself as calm, patient, deliberate and thoughtful. We all like to think good things of ourselves, right? Based on feedback/notes/gifts/cards from students and daughters over the years, I feel pretty accurate in this assessment of myself, but still humble and intentional about how I treat others. I am aware that I am a role model, and also that any little thing I do could be someone’s lasting memory of me if I were to die tomorrow. Speaking of which, I have brain cancer, and will be undergoing chemotherapy for one year, starting the first week of May.

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Tell us the process involved in making this song.

The first verse, both lyrics and chords came to me while driving to the landfill one summer day.

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State your artist’s name and elaborate on it.

Dave Whitcher Saga. The artist name speaks to my musical journey. It’s a long one, and no one knows of it but me. It will continue, change, and evolve, while remaining rooted in telling stories. Saga.

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State the title of the song and the meaning.

“I Don’t Care”

The meaning of the title is ironic and may sound negative or rebellious, but is really a love song. At the core of the intent, I am making it clear that I only care about my wife and my family. Everything else out there could go away, and I flat out would not care.

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

Well, it’s only a 3 song EP, so I chose “Gone Girl” as the title, as I think that song is the most unique of the three, and it shares a title with a popular book and movie, so was hoping people may discover it accidentally through searches!  HA! Maybe next time.

Prada Gino

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ARTIST NAME: Prada Gino

 

SONG TITLE: Staying On Top

 

ALBUM TITLE: R.I.P. (Rest In Prada)

 

RELEASE DATE: SUMMER 2018

 

GENRE: Hip-Hop

 

Website

 

iTunes

 

YouTube

 

Reverbnation

 

 

Discuss your composition and melody.

This track has a very simplistic melody with bells and 808s to really bring out the feel of this track.

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State the name of your producer and elaborate on the song.

The Producer behind this hit single is Maskerade Beats. Maskerade likes to create up-tempo tracks with nice live sounds that collaborate with the kicks and 808’s. This instrumental is what got me involved with him. The more live the sound; the better.

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Discuss the lyrics of the song.

“Staying On Top” was created to pitch to the NBA and sports retailers by how the content was written. It ties in specifically to basketball and the current state of the league with the dominating teams staying on top of their game and meeting in the finals in the end. I tie my musical experience in with witty punchlines that transition well into basketball. I talk about Steph Curry and Lebron James as highlights in the single to show their rivalry and how important it is for these 2 superstars to stay on top of their game to come out a champion. The single is currently being pitched to the NBA for a chance to be the theme song for this year’s finals.

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Elaborate on your music career.

I have been creating music for over 10 years now and have been really serious over the last 5 years with branding and marketing myself to be a player in the game. I started out working with a friend of mine on a karaoke machine recording fun little rhymes and music. I started to love making people feel good from the lyrics and music feel I provided, so I continued to pursue it more and more till it became a defining part of my life. I am originally from Chicago, IL and went to college at Columbia College Chicago studying Musical Theatre and Music Theory. After a few years of college, I decided to take my music endeavors to the West Coast and found a new home in Los Angeles. From there I continued to write music and advance my sound and brand so that I could be undeniable at some point. Since then, I have released an album “Ego Trip” with great reviews and write ups in The Source, Hiphopdx, Souls of Hip-hop, and more. I have hit over 2 MILLION plays on my music streaming platforms, and have built a solid fan base around the world. Currently working on the release of my second studio album “R.I.P. (Rest In Prada)” set to release this summer.

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Brief us on how you are reaching fans with your music.

I continue to reach more fans today by touring around the country setting up radio interviews in major cities promoting my brand and letting people know that I am in their city to do meet and greet and perform at their favorite venues to draw more fans out. I am always engaging on social media by interacting with my guests who visit my page and leave comments and encourage feedback so they know that I value their opinions. Giving away free music to new subscribers and helping them get involved in my brand by making shout out videos and posts about which songs are their favorite.

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Discuss your motive behind making music.

I love to create content. I have always been the type that was the center of attention. I was the class clown in high school getting kicked out of class for a joke just to get people’s reactions. I feel that I have moved forward into creating music because it makes people feel a certain type of way. The mood, melody, and lyrics drive people’s emotions and I want to be able to tap into those and give the audience the feeling that they are looking for in that moment.

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Discuss your lyrics and songwriting.

To elaborate more on the lyrics and songwriting in this piece, we have to look at the structure of the song. Everything in the track is centered on the common them of staying on top of your game. In order for that to be successful, you have to have a solid team behind you. Without the team then you have nothing. So the song focuses on your team and how those around you help make the difference. As an artist, I need a great team of people around who understand the business and share the same passion that I do about becoming successful and bringing our game to the next level. It is very relatable to sports in every aspect of that.

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Elaborate on your work and achievement so far in your music career.

I continue to wow myself everyday with the accomplishments that I have made. First off, just recently I have hit over 2million streams on my music network which is a huge accomplishment for an indie artist with no manager or record label help. I have had the opportunity as well to work for Warner Chapel and work with Chris Brown on new music and a few music videos. To really sell my next album dropping this summer, I have been offered a $40k contract to take my music on tour around the United States in the late fall going into 2019 strong. There are a lot of things in the works for you guys to see and I can’t wait to share them with everyone.

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Tell us your opinion on using rhymes dictionary or writing software to develop lyrics.

I think that is corny. I don’t believe as an artist that you should rely on software like this to engineer your lyrics. I have no problem with artists who bring others into the studio to help brainstorm ideas on choruses and content. That is the real way to come up with authentic music.

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Discuss the music industry.

I believe the music industry is in a re-birth phase. Why I say that you ask? Because everything that trends recycles over time. When hip hop first came into light, the music was very simplistic and gimmicky. The lyrics where spaced out and rappers didn’t rap crazy fast and try to deliver more than one rhyming word per bar. As the game progressed, people like Biggie and Tupac came and provided the real lyrical, storytelling, smash hits that everyone fell in love with. I think the current state of music is in an upswing and that the music is going to shift back in the next few years to real story telling with content that has substance. I don’t feel that way about most of the new stars at this point.

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Elaborate on how you prepare yourself for a recording session.

I always like to make sure I’m prepared for a recording session by rehearsing the music hundreds of times before I step inside the booth to deliver. That way I know exactly what I want the outcome to sound like. The more prepared I am, the more content I am able to knock out in one day. I love to have other influential minds in the room that can help craft small things to bring the music to life engineering wise.

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Brief us on your preference in terms of tempo as in up-tempo, mid-tempo or slow tempo.

Depending on the mood of the song and what the message is that I am trying to get across really determine the tempo. I don’t have a preference because I bounce back and forth a lot on my albums with different tempo trying to create a track for everyone on the album.

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Discuss your shows or live performance.

I like live performances and it is my favorite thing to do as an artist. I have performed all over the place and lined up shows all summer throughout the U.S. promoting my brand and getting ready to tour with the new album dropping. I have done festivals, clubs, private shows, dinner parties, birthdays, etc. I and my DJ: Ace Smooth, hosting club events and parties. We would love to put together specific shows to entertain guests of all ages.

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Share your press release and reviews with us.

You can check out my press release and reviews on my Website which will highlight the music I have out as well as videos and breakdown of where I am most popular at in the world. As far as reviews, I have had my music reviewed on The Source, HipHopDX, Souls Of Hip-Hop, Jamsphere, 2dopeboys, Thisis50, and many more. If you google Prada Gino reviews/blogs you will find that content available as well.

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Send a message across to your fans and supporters.

I just want to say thank you so much for the continued support and I hope that I can continue to provide you with the music you love to hear. I want to create more visuals and do more meet and greet to get to know you guys more.

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Discuss the story line of the song.

The song story line starts off with putting together the dream team. Showing that through hard work, training and conditioning, you can create a force to be reckoned with. By the end of the song, we highlight my talents and how they are only magnified because of the other great people around me that continue to lift me up and create an atmosphere for us all to thrive in.

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Tell us what makes this song unique from others.

The content, the overall hard hitting lyrics, and the composition..

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Tell us the theme of most of your compositions.

The themes are always changing. Depending on the feel of the album and the direction I want to go. I like to create many different compositions on my album so that every fan has a song they can rock to and call their favorite. This new project dropping in the summertime is a much deeper look into the life of Prada Gino and the decision he faces now as he transitions into mega stardom. The decision he must make, stay independent or join the labels. You have to rock with the album to see what decision Prada Gino will decide to make.

Alyssa Sequoia

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James Sklar is a music manager, musician, producer and certified yoga teacher.

 

 

Alyssa Grew up in Westchter County NY – She was deeply inspired by the music found in her family record collection with its extreme diversity from Simon and Garfunkle to Sarah Vaughn to stand-up comics and so much more it became her world. With no formal music education Alyssa’s earliest memories are of writing songs. She began singing her originals and jazz standards in cafes and clubs in NYC when she was nineteen and began to explore her sound – an eclectic mix of jazz, folk, rap, world and soul. Alyssa has continued preforming in NY and beyond and still exploring her sound today – She has recorded 2 full length albums “~within~”, “Queen Annes Lace”, and two five songs albums, “Flow With Me” and “Alyssa Live” along with various singles and re-mixes. Alyssa’s music can be heard on radio stations across the country and Europe.

 

 

 

 

Website

 

Spotify

 

SoundCloud

 

Facebook

Benny and the sparrows

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ARTIST NAME

Benny and the sparrows

 

SONG TITLE

Give Me A Chance

 

RELEASE DATE

2016

 

GENRE

Pub music/Pop

 

Facebook

 

iTunes

 

 

 

Tell us your view on old and new school music in terms of preference.

Accepting a new piece of music is just like falling in love, it’s very personal.

Some new kids like old school and some old kids love new school, like I’ve said, it’s very personal.

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Tell us your most memorable day as an artist.

33 years ago I had a chance to do a playback tour with a couple of guys in my hometown. It was in about 20 places through all of Europe with Germaine Jackson and Pia Zadora, after the movie ”When The Rain Begins To Fall”. Quite exciting, we were to be backstage with the best with what we used to see on TV.

Drinking with Phill Lynot, snacking with Matt Bianco, you get the picture.

We were young and easily impressed.

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Tell us how you protect your singing voice.

Apple all ways works.

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Tell us the major reason you are into music.

Born with the thing and I can’t get rid of it.

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Discuss creativity and originality in music.

All ways follow your heart, you can never go wrong.

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Tell us your plans pertaining music.

I keep on following my heart till I die.

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Tell us the secret of success.

Apart from some local TVs in Maastricht I never had success, so I surely can’t tell you any secrets there.

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Tell us how you become a musician.

Again, I was born with it, so it grows on you, you eventually meet some people and you discover the rest.

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Tell us what makes you happy and sad on this project.

Happy I’ll become when I listen to it and can sing along, sad I’ll become when the record is finished.

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Tell us your point of view on rape and sexual harassment, and how to eradicate it.

I only like to give someone pleasure when that person gives it on a base of free will.

Eradicate this in another person is only possible by giving the good example.

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List the people that assisted in making this song.

Sorry, I wrote, produced and performed it myself. Although I like to thank my best friend Louise who bought me the sound studio to record it with.

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Tell us how you get financial support to run your music career.

I don’t. The person who bought me the studio died 8 years ago.

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Tell us the genre of your music and the reason you went for this genre.

It grows like this because in my hometown we have carnival season with sing along music. I guess that’s the base of my style.

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Tell us if you prefer to write your own songs or you prefer to write with professional songwriters.

Up till now I’ve written on my own. In the past I’ve tried to write with others but they’ve never taken it so seriously.

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Tell us if you prefer to produce your songs or you prefer to work with reputable producers.

Producing with professionals would be a dream come true.

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Tell us the story behind this song.

I write out of my fantasy. Sometimes I’m triggered by a dream. This song started with a dream, I’ve heard a melody in that dream and went along with that after I woke up.

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Tell us your favourite brand of microphone.

Shure.