CMJ Music Marathon is upon us. Let’s talk about it, shall we? The long-running music conference and showcasepalooza takes place in New York City and its boroughs, October 21-25. It’s not easy to span the city in time to catch all the acts performing, but damn it if it isn’t fun to try.
This year will see the return of the Outlaw Roadshow, put on by Counting Crows‘ Adam Duritz in conjunction with the Ryan’s Smashing Life blog. The traveling showcase – no badges required! – has been a popular feature of the big fests from Austin to NY and features some of the best underground music in the country. If you hit this one, you’ll catch sets from our friends Mean Creek and Air Traffic Controller, as well as Hallelujah The Hills, Christian McNeil & Sea Monsters, Corin Ashley (occasionally of The Pills), and many more.
Here are a few more to check out:
We’ll have some more recommendations to come, no doubt.
Having undergone significant updates and alterations over the past several months, our blog is back online. While you might only notice some minor cosmetic changes at first, we’ve made huge improvements to the underlying system here and throughout all of OurStage.com, and you will start to see more new features and upgrades over the coming months.
We’re also overhauling our entire competition structure to find new and better ways to provide our artist community with career-building opportunities. We look forward to rolling these out, and we welcome your feedback. For fans of new music, there are going to be a lot of new ways to discover the best stuff you’ve never heard, working in tandem with our new parent company, Amazing Media – already the leader in new music discovery in the UK and beyond.
Thanks for your patience throughout these quiet months, and please stay tuned.
A few years ago, we got really into a young singer named Skyler Stonestreet, who was running the table in several of our monthly channels and ended up winning the opportunity to track a song, “Out to Sea,” at L.A.’s Sanctum Sound Studios.
Stonestreet has now joined forces with another great talent, Kat Ostenberg, to form SIREN. The duo signed to Warner Bros. this summer and debuted their single “I Think I Like You.”
Today, they dropped “Kanye,” a tremendously infectious single produced by The Chainsmokers, whose own track “#SELFIE” became a big smash earlier this year. “Kanye” is actually released as The Chainsmokers feat. SIREN.
If you like your sweet indie pop with a lot more hip-hop, you are going to love this shit.
Nikki Lynette is awesome. She’s a crazy talented artist, but also startlingly honest and often hilarious. We highly recommend following her on Facebook and Twitter, as her content there is all killer, no filler (or filter). It was from those sources that we learned of her appearance in a new national commercial for Kmart.
If you’re like us, when you first hear the concept, “rapping lunchladies in a commercial for Kmart,” you imagine the cringe-worthy worst. Instead, it’s incredibly well-done and very funny. Never doubt a creative team savvy enough to include Nikki Lynette.
In addition, Lynette is a very good writer of prose and frequently contributes to Chicago Now, as she did with this piece discussing the new commercial. Very worth the read, and typically insightful, as she connects this opportunity to the options now available to artists:
So what I will do is remind my fellow indie artists that it’s a new day in the entertainment industry. More and more opportunities are available for us now so we don’t have to be so limited. Just change your perspective. From where I’m sitting, things are looking pretty good to me.
Her new album, Respect My Disrespect, is due in the coming months.
#TTTATC is a “go.” Our former Artist Of The Week Air Traffic Controller is capping off this summer by hitting the road with The Tragic Thrills. The two bands will spend their August crossing the U.S. and spreading their message of melodicism and excellence. ATC are promoting their new single, “The House.” Watch the trailer below, and see tour dates below that.
Tour Dates with The Tragic Thrills:
Sat 02 Seattle, WA – Barboza’s (21+)
Mon 04 Reno, NV – Singer Social Club (21+)
Wed 06 San Francisco, CA – Bottom of the Hill (AA)
Thu 07 Los Angeles, CA – Bootleg HiFi (21+)
Fri 08 Phoenix, AZ – Electric Ballroom (AA)
Sat 09 Las Vegas, NV – Container Park (AA)
Sun 10 Salt Lake City, UT – Loading Dock (AA)
Mon 11 Denver, CO – Lost Lake (21+)
Wed 13 El Paso, TX – Lowbrow Palace (18+)
Thu 14 Austin, TX – Holy Mountain (AA)
Fri 15 Houston, TX – Warehouse Live Studio (AA)
Sat 16 Dallas, TX – Prophet Bar (AA)
Sun 17 Little Rock, AR – Rev Room (AA)
Tue 19 St. Louis, MO – The Demo (AA)
Wed 20 Chicago, IL – Schubas Tavern (AA)
Thu 21 Pittsburgh, PA – Hard Rock Cafe (AA)
Fri 22 Arlington, VA – IOTA Club (21+)
Sat 23 New York – Mercury Lounge (21+)
Sun 24 Philadelphia, PA – Ortlieb’s Lounge (21+)
Tue 26 Boston, MA – Great Scott (18+)
Not long ago, we brought you the first collaboration between Ayla Nereo, Mr. Lif, and The Polish Ambassador. It was such a success that the trio started work on a few more songs for an EP, but soon had a full-length album’s worth of material on their hands. Now they are all heading out on a 30-city tour, along with the artist Liminus, spreading not only their latest music, but an educational message of ecologically holistic sustainability known as permaculture. The group is offsetting the costs of bringing a team out on the road with an IndieGoGo campaign, where you can pre-order the new album. Watch the video, and see tour dates below.
It weren’t so long ago we was telling you about It’s Got To Be Now, the new record from Boston’s Aloud, and how nice and good and rock it was likely to be. Now we are pleased to tell you that we were correct in our predictions and equally pleased to hip you to their new video, for the song “Back Here With Me Again.” Comprised entirely of live footage, the video deconstructs videos themselves, and features both kinds of guitar dueling, passive and aggressive, but never passive-aggressive. Enjoy it:
OurStage member, former MTV ‘Needle in the Haystack’ winner, and pride of British Columbia Alexandria Maillot just dropped a new single called “Time (On Your Own).” It’s a hypnotic, groove-heavy heavy-groove adorned with sweet and airy harmonies and a single reverbed-out guitar and maybe a baritone guitar riding a riff over the beat. It’s deceptively simple and kind of perfect for mid-summer evenings. She’s got it up on Bandcamp for free or pay-what-you-like download. Get it now.
The Gospel Tour, featuring headliner Panic! At The Disco and OurStage members Walk The Moon, has seen the universally reviled Westboro Baptist “Church” appearing at recent shows to protest the bands’ insufficient level of hatred for other human beings or something. Both bands are turning that frown upside-down by donating to human rights charities. PATD pledged to donate $20 to the Human Rights Campaign for each WBC
brainwashed dipshit protestor, but when only 13 showed up, the band bumped it up to $1,000, plus a portion of their merchandise sales. For their part, Walk The Moon has pledged the profits from their night’s merch sales to the youth group Everyone Is Gay.
So…keep it up, WBC.
See the full Gospel Tour dates below