The Music Mag: Unsigned UK Music News, Reviews & Promotion
As you might remember, The Music Mag featured Mayhem Deranged back at the end of 2012. The punk rock band hailing from the English capital have gone from strength to strength and are due to release their new single ’50 Megaton Love’.
Think The Cult meets Billy Idol, as lead singer Ray Mayhew and long time bassist Robert Godfrey are joined by James Stevenson (current touring guitarist for The Cult) and Craig Adams (bassist for The Mission, formerly of the Sisters Of Mercy). Rounding it off, mixing duties were by one Steve Brown who had mixed The Cult’s – She Sells Sanctuary. We didn’t intend it to have so many nods to the Cult, but there you are!
Whilst the single is catchy and easy to listen to, if you give in too quickly you might find your face blown off by the shear passion and aggression behind the vocals. ’50 Megaton Love’ is one of the finest releases from Mayhem Deranged so far, the track can easily
With ’50 Megaton Love’ being mixed and mastered to perfection, it’s exciting times for the band and fans alike. The new single will be sure to garner a lot of well deserved attention and we can’t wait to hear their next track. Follow Mayhem Deranged on their website and Facebook.
Incredibly forthright, powerful and a little bit busty are 3 ways to describe the country-rock pop duo A&L.
Made up of two seasoned industry professionals, A&L consists of Anthony Casuccio and Lana Marie. Anthony is a 20 year music veteran whose production work has been nominated for three Grammy awards, been featured in major music publications and topped the music charts. Lana is an award winning vocalist who has been a long-time force on the East Coast music scene and voice to many jingles on radio and television.
Get Me a Drink is a hard hitting, super-catchy, party song that makes light of the fact that we often want a drink after a long week of work. Casuccio says the inspiration for the song came from being in an overly long meeting. “I was stuck in a meeting and thought; wow, I could really use a nice adult beverage right now.” He wrote the song during that meeting. With a vocal style that sounds like The Pretty Reckless meets P!nk and Gretchen Wilson, Lana delivers a vocal performance that demands your attention and gets the listener singing along to the hyper-hooky melody. Get Me A Drink is one of those songs that you won’t be able to get out of your head.
Vin Deca is a positive ardent electronic and dance music composer, producer and artist with an unmistakable afro-latin influence currently recording dance, pop, Afro-, latin-, deep-, electro-, and progressive house.
Working as a songwriter, composer, producer and mix engineer in Germany since 2002, confining only to one genre or style of music has been out of question for the Cameroonian born keyboardist and bass guitarist.
Even though four on the floor has always been default for his musical programming, it was not until 2013 that he decided to make his ancient love affair with dance music public with the release of a dance album.
It all began as one of those delightful accidents. He received an order from a client to compose dance music, which was his first creative exposure to the genre in years. Long before finishing the project, the dance bug had bitten him so badly that he has never stopped crafting dance tracks ever since.
Vin Deca celebrates his colossal passion for people and especially dancing people in the album “Electro Positive plus”. Carrying two decades in the studio on his clock as a musician, producer and engineer; in Africa and in Europe, Vin Deca blends in “Electro Positive” the unmistakable Afro – Latin signature with elements of Swedish and Progressive and deep House.
DAMN GLAD is headed up by singer/guitarist/songwriter Matt Kurzban, Jeff Baker on drums and Gio Giovanni on bass. Their energy and style of soulful power rock keeps you humming for hours while succinct, lyrical content will help you get out of bed in the morning.
DG released their 3rd album “It’s Always Something” and have 2 previous albums “Not For Nothing” and “And That’s That!” DG has shared the stage with national acts while pounding the NYC/Brooklyn rock scene. Having appeared on network tv, their music has been featured in indie films, reality shows and on various cable channels such as MTV & VH1.
Watch Damn Glad – Crawl Back below:
High energy and personality is DG’s formula for putting on a show worth mention. The driving guitars, infectious grooves and memorable melodies/harmonies distinguish their sound as a power trio keeping it real. No gimmicks. Just catchy, driving rock with attitude! Their power and honesty shine through with songs ranging from tough grooving toe tappers, soulful ballads to dark melodic rockers.
Created by the union of a Dominican mother and a Martiniquan father, The Warchild’s upbringing was filled with music of every genre; classical, opera, reggae, or country music. Douglas, his older brother was a 90’s music enthusiast and D.J. during family gatherings; which included small events as well as recorded mix-tapes that would be passed around among friends. Watching his brother mixing records and CD’s in awe sparked something inside the young child. Thus the music addiction began and The Warchild was born!
Growing up The Warchild was inspired by a plethora of artist stemming from many different musical denominations and backgrounds. This includes Peter Tosh, Bob Marley, Kassav, Francky Vincent, Sizzla, Bounty Killer, Mavado, Vybz Kartel, Snoop Dogg, 2Pac, 50 Cent, Snap, Paul Oakenfold, Kyau & Albert, Swedish House Mafia, Kenny Rogers and more… (Not in any particular order). Influenced by a myriad of talented artists, The Warchild’s musical aspirations began with writing intricate sociological lyrics that are not only catchy in tune, but relatable as well. As the years progressed the artist began using his cultural vernacular to express his thoughts by assimilating them into his musical stylings.
His multi-ethnic heritage being a key component, The Warchild displays this fundamental aspect of his identity through his sound. “MY LIFE IN HIGH DEFINITION” is the product of these countless life experiences. The album was developed during a challenging period in his life. It was a rather dark period in The Warchild’s journey which entailed more downs than ups!
Despite the tumult, out of this darkness came a positive outcome; MLIHD became a reality. With the contribution of ARES- a long time friend since the formative years of high school with an uncanny aptitude to spit out amazing lyrics; the gifted DJ/Producer Nemoz from Barcelona, and the invaluable contribution of musical genius De Elusive and M.A. whom not only produced this latest project; but was instrumental as a comrade in arms who stood fast beside his friend through his difficult moments; so that the world can now know THE WARCHILD!
LINA FOURO is a singer/songwriter from Toronto, Canada, who has just released her new single BOOM off her Debut Album “The Love Cycle” which will drop in November 2014. The Album is mainly produced by Juno-Award Winning Producer LONNIE SZOKE.
Lina Fouro’s debut Album The Love Cycle will be released late November under Label 3 SP. 3 SP will also be releasing another Dance-able catchy tune for Lina (L40) before the release of her debut Album.
On top of her debut album, Lina is in the process of shooting an interview for SUB TV Network which covers 88 Universities in the UK, SUB TV will air both her Interview and Music Video to over 1.7 million Students.
LINA’s Video BOOM has been approved for airing on MTVU and MTV.com & VH1 for Broadcasting and you can watch it below:
Introducing Timeless Journey, a small independent musical collaboration project in the electronic/dance genre. Residing in Sheffield, UK, Timeless Journey have been together since 2011, initially beginning as a one man project but going on to gain more members in the last few years. With the addition of more members the collaboration’s aim has changed from instrumental and ambience to more of a dance vibe.
TJ released their first album titled ‘The Voyager’s Saga’ back in 2012, featuring a worldly influence and a chilled vibe. This year brings bigger and even better things with the release of their double album ‘Drawing a Line’. The new album contains their most recent singles ‘Vododeo’, ‘Alive’, ‘Castaway’ and ‘Dispstick’. Take a listen to ‘Dipstick’ below:
Timeless Journey take influences from a wide range of musical talents, including Phillip Glass, Tangerine Dream and Jean Michel, right through to Moby, Mylo, FSOL and Underworld. The wide range of influences from dance, chillout, and electronica really come through to create an intoxicating mix in their music.
Didi Benami finished American Idol’s ninth season as a top-ten finalist. After several years refining her craft she’s due to release her debut album entitled ‘Reverie’ on September 30th, 2014. Didi draws emotion and inspiration from the likes of Joni Mitchell and Stevie Nicks, gracefully fusing folk, soul and rock to form her sound.
The Tennessee based 27 year old singer songwriter’s troubled childhood and the tragic loss of her best friend drove Didi forward in forming this record resulting in powerful melodies, hypnotic guitars and stunning vocals.
When questioned on her difficult upbringing Didi Benami said “Throughout my life I’ve always turned to music to help me get from moment to moment, and so I try to write songs that will inspire or empower others that way.” Her gripping delivery of ‘Terrified’ was what drew in and captivated audiences all around the world.
Released independently and made in collaboration with Billy Mohler, Reverie achieves that stirring spirit thanks both to Benami’s poetic and boldly personal lyrics and a masterful voice that’s at turns sweet and soulfully dusky.
Born in New York and raised in Knoxville, Benami began honing her vocals by singing in school events and in church choirs. However at age 14, she had to move away from tension at home and live with a relative, and even took on minimum wage jobs to save up for college. Flash forward a decade and a half and Didi is a great example of perseverance and hard work paying off.
Reverie is the start of a much brighter future for Didi Benami. From the opening track titled ‘Trouble’, right through to ‘Hummingbird’, Didi displays magnificent control over her vocals and the hauntingly powerful tracks will remain with you long after you’ve finished listening.
Her songs on the album communicate hope and beauty through pain and dissolution. As Didi says “My dream for this album is to somehow communicate the battle of both darkness and the light that exists inside as well as outside ourselves.”
Shid Latta is an up and coming rap artist from Baltimore, Maryland. Having been featured on The Music Mag before, with his single ‘Bet That’, he returns with the release of his third album ‘Love + Other Drugs’.
Shid Latta says Love + Other Drugs is “about my life over the past few years and the ups and downs/pleasure and pain that comes with being in love and the use and distribution of drugs. They are both very similar and can create and/or destroy lives.”
With the help of executive producer Al Steed of P. Star Productions, L+ODs will be a mix of Rap, Hip Hop, Rock and Electronic/Pop. It features the acclaimed single Bet That (produced by Sibling Jointz). It will also feature a rap/rock cover of ‘Tainted Love’ (based on the Marilyn Manson version), a rap cover of ‘Separate Ways’ by Journey, as well as skits featuring clips from the movie Love and Other Drugs. As a true modern entrepreneur, Shid will also be launching IV.II.O. Clothing Company (pronounced EYE-VEE-OH) this fall.
Powerful, energetic, sick and real: Shid Latta’s 3rd album ‘Love + Other Drugs’ certainly delivers. You can listen to his new single from the album titled ‘How it is’, produced by Belgium Dj and producer Evolution MS / @EVOLUTIONMS here.
If you’re reading this post then it’s quite likely that you’re an aspiring musician. If so, keep reading, you’re in the right place to pick up a few tips on how to get music heard online and gain new fans.
The Music Mag began back in 2009 to help promote and review artists like yourselves and we’ve compiled this list to try and help you to promote your music for free (or almost free).
15/ Be a socialite and get involved with hashtags
Let’s start with an obvious one. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram (among others) are absolutely essential for any musician. Social media is a fantastic way to stay in touch with your fans, gain new followers, and essentially get more people to hear your music online.
Getting to know popular hashtags that you can get involved with is a great opportunity to reach new people.
Why not try recording a cover of an old classic and share your video on Twitter using the hashtag #throwbackthursday & #tbt. The more creative you can be with your ‘throwback’, the more shares and interaction you’re likely to get.
Or how about writing a song about someone or something that’s very current – look what happened when Mac Miller wrote a song about Donald Trump.
Another piece of advice is to keep a look out for trending topics on Twitter. If you can post something shareable and it gets picked up by a few people the possibilities are endless. I’ve seen people have their tweets, videos and stories featured on major news websites and even in national papers because of getting involved with trending news topics.
14/ Online communities
Websites like Reddit, Digg and Stumbleupon are great for reaching people. Make sure to read the guidelines though, because on Reddit, for example, you need to have a ratio of 10-1 of other people’s content to your own content, else your account will be worthless – it’s to stop people going on there and shamelessly plugging their own things. Trust us, we know!
However, if you are clever there’s no reason why you can’t shamelessly plug yourself, but do so whilst also sharing other people’s content.
13/ Perform live online
What an age we live in… but live video streaming of music gigs is becoming bigger and some websites have even been created with that specific focus in mind. Stageit is designed so that you can specifically hold a gig from wherever you like, be it in front of your computer screen, in the park, wherever you like – as long as you have access to a webcam and microphone you can get music heard online for free!
The great thing with Stageit, is that it’s free to use and you can sell tickets and even collect tips from people who watch! Imagine if you gained a good following via social media and then announced your live streaming performance just for them. It’s such a good way to make your fans feel valued and see an intimate online performance, you could even respond to the chat box between songs and interact with your fans.
12/ Paid advertisement on Google – for free!
That’s right Taylor, for free!
This is something I’ve done and it’s worked well. There’s no strings attached and you can get £75 worth of advertising credit for absolutely free! Just click here to request your coupon.
Once you’ve signed up to Adwords unfortunately you do have to add a method of payment, but they won’t take a dime from you as long as you make sure to check back and deactivate your advert once you’ve spent the £75 in free money.
After the boring stuff you can place an advert for whatever search you want. Say if you’re based in London you could add keywords such as “best band in london”, “rock band london”, “book a band uk”, etc. You can then set how much you’ll pay for each word. Google is very helpful and thorough with helping you set this up.
11/ Contact music blogs
That’s not an exactly accurate portrayal of music bloggers by the way – I don’t have a ‘stache.
Music blogs – just like this one – often feature unsigned music and love to hear from talented musicians. It’s important to remember that a websites and blogs generally receive a lot of emails from musicians, so here are a few pointers with how to featured:
☺ Send an introductory email, being fun and friendly.
☺ Be patient in waiting for a reply.
☺ Follow them and interact with them on Twitter/Facebook.
☺ If you’ve not heard back in a couple of weeks send them another little nudge.
Remember that music bloggers want to blog about music! So if you’re sending something that’s interesting or different, it’s all the more likely they’ll want to blog about it.
You can find tons of music blogs on Google just by searching for terms such as ‘Music blog’ ‘Music blog (location)’ and ‘submit my music’.
10/ BBC Introducing
This is one of the best ways to get your music on national radio. If your song is very well produced and of course, good enough, there is a decent chance that BBC Introducing will accept and play your submission. It might again take a bit of patience and most likely take several submissions, but keep at it!
The people at the BBC love finding talented and local musicians, but they have a lot of submissions to get through. This week alone there were over 1500 tracks uploaded, but it’s popular because it’s one of the best ways out there to get your music heard.
9/ Contact local radio stations
This can be a little long winded, but it’s more than worth it. Alan Partridge agrees. AHA!
There are a few ways to go about this. You can either go the long winded route and search through Yellow Pages and Google to find lots of radio stations, or you can look on lists like this one, which is a list of UK radio stations (or go herehere for stations in the USA).
Once you’ve found the radio stations that you want to apply for, you need to find the appropriate email and then drop them a line with a bit of info, links to your social pages and your music.
Hopefully they’ll get back in touch and you’ll have your music played on many radio stations. Be sure to make the most out of it by finding out when the song will be played and interacting with them on social media.
8/ Comment on stuff!
You meet someone, you talk to them, you become closer. That’s kind of the general way we form friendships with people, so it should be no different to talking with people and getting music heard online.
Bloggers, promoters, miscellaneous press and radio stations love to feel important and therefore love it when you interact with their articles (like this one, hint hint). Do it! Now you’ve done it, keep on doing it, you’ll stay in the mind of that person and build a relationship up with them by doing so.
Feel free once commenting on something the article has touched upon, to check out your thing which is related. The writer of the article will be happy for the comment and will hopefully then go and comment on, listen to, or share your music.
It’s crazy what you can get for 5 bucks these days (or about three fiddy in English Sterling). Fiverr is a website where everything costs a mere $5. The catch is that if you want extras you pay more, but a lot of the basic things are pretty damn good.
For example if you’re mastering isn’t quite down yet, you can get it professionally done right here for the cost of a glass of wine. Say what!
Or if you just want to have your music featured on a large music website like this one, you can do so by clicking here.
Fiverr has thousands of gigs available. Just head to the music section and search for what you’re looking for. Maybe stay away from this though. Seriously.
6/ Email marketing
This isn’t a picture of a chimp and Katy Perry’s boobs for no reason. Well, maybe the Katy Perry bit.
Mailchimp is a great example of a free program (up to a point) where you can add contacts and create mailing campaigns. I’ve seen musicians go around at gigs they’ve played afterwards and ask people to sign up for their mailing list, you can also add a signup section on your website and a link to signup in your description sections on Youtube.
As you build your mailing list, your emails will reach more people and each email will be more powerful.
I’d suggest starting out at maybe one email a month, as a sort of monthly update and make sure to have some cool and interesting info about upcoming gigs, contests, press, social media updates, etc. As you gain a larger list you could start mailing a bit more frequently, but you need to make sure you’re not filling people’s inbox’s else they’ll unsubscribe.
5/ Collaborate with other musicians
Think about it. You have x amount of followers, another person has x amount of different followers. If you collaborate with that artist, then the song you’ve made together will be shared to all of their followers, gaining you new fans! The same can be said the other way round, creating a win win situation for everybody.
Jut maybe don’t go for the glam rockers above.
I touched upon this earlier in the online communities section, but it definitely deserves it’s own spot.
There are a lot of covers on Youtube – and for a simple reason – music is amazing. People want to recreate a beautiful or powerful song themselves, because as soon as they hear it the song becomes part of them. It’s how music can move us and you should get involved!
You’ll need a webcam and your favourite trusty instrument(s); feel free to be creative and use margarine tubs if need be, but it needs to sound awesome. Once recorded upload it to your channel (making sure to fill in the description and tags properly), share it on social media, email your mailing list and also add it as a video reply to the original music video and other covers – this will help get you views and new subscribers to your channel!
Covers of songs can receive millions of views!
Blogs love covers as well, so once you’ve got it up there be sure to email your bloggers with a little press release of sorts about yourselves, what the cover meant to you and then promote your new album or single. This is where contacts can help. If you’ve built up good relationships with websites/blogs by interacting with them, when you let them know you’ve covered this great song, they’ll be more likely to feature it on their site.
3/ Try out new services
Don’t worry cat! New doesn’t always have to be so scary.
New social media services and websites that are based around streaming content are emerging all of the time. Do you remember when Chat Roulette started – granted that the majority of people just wanted to flash their privates at someone – but it added potential to get music across to new people, and musicians got on board.
This person recorded his Chat Roulette sessions, in which he played improvised piano to whomever wanted to watch. To this date the video has amassed over 12 million views. It’s all about being creative.
Yeah! Photography. Woo!
For musicians branding and marketing yourselves online is imperative. Perception is everything. If you have some shoddy photos and look like a half arsed attempt at a band/artist people may not take you seriously. If straight away they see that boom you have some cool, creative photos of you/your band, to go along with it, and well designed social channels that are branded with your logo or your pictures, then fans (and promoters) will take you seriously.
It may not instantly help you get your music heard, but it will help you stand out from the crowd.
1/ Get in touch with the local press
You’d be surprised at what the local press will write about, especially now that most have websites or blogs to go along with their publication. You just need to make your story local.
For example if you were born in this little town (or region) that has it’s own paper and website, get in touch and let them know what you’re doing now. They’ll most likely to be thrilled to pat someone on the back that has grown up where they have.
This will hopefully get you a story in the paper or on the website, with links to your music, as well as being shared socially to gain new fans.
If you can think of any other ways that you’d like to share, please comment using Facebook below.