OS Member Larry g(EE) has become the latest rising talent to be featured on the popular Daytrotter webseries.
Popping up online a few weeks after Larry and his band made a trek to the company’s HQ, Daytrotter’s latest session with our favorite Texas native offers fans four stripped-down performances. Included in the mix of songs are singles “Yo Mama” and “I’m Your Fool,” as well as rare gems “I Don’t Know” and “I Think I Love You.” Membership is required for downloads, but those who signup today should be able to experience Larry’s sound for free.
Discussing recording with Larry, a team member at Daytrotter wrote, “For the record, Larry g(EE) and his band were sweating their FACES off during the taping of this session a few weeks ago. It gets HOT up in the Horseshack during the summer months. Larry g(EE)’s music is meant for heat and humidity. It’s meant for getting sexy. You cannot fight the urge to want to get hot and sweaty with all of these Texans. Let’s all take our shirts off, right now!”
Blending elements of French and American culture, we have the smooth sounds of Sydney Wayser as this week’s Needle in the Haystack. The New York City-based singer/songwriter has been praised by many publications including Daytrotter and NPR Music.
Having recently wrapped up US and French tours and having released her new album, The Colorful, in France, Wayser is currently hunkered down in practice spaces in NYC (the cheapest are boiler rooms, as she has found out) working on her new album. This week, Wayser will be giving away her single, “la di da,“ as our free download. Keep an eye out for more from her during the rest of the week!
Here We Go Magic is a talented troupe of musical alchemists weaving a delightful web of sounds that please the ear and challenge the mind. To grasp the real magic behind the music, you must first understand their sorcerer, Luke Temple. As Jon Pareles of the New York Times puts it, “Mr. Temple isn’t part of any particular school”not even that all-purpose new songwriters’ catchall, freak-folk”and his private world is fascinating.”
Luke’s humble beginnings of pulling swords from stones began in 2004 as he plucked his guitar in small clubs around New York City. You may recognize his track “Saturday People” from Fall 2007 when it was a strong contender on OurStage. Back then, we were able to catch up with Luke at the CMJ Music Marathon and he wowed us with his captivating sleight of hand:
"What helps with inspiration is being uncomfortable and working with different mediums that your not as comfortable or familiar with," Luke said in the above interview. "I can get really familiar on the guitar and I could write a million sad country ballads. That's my comfort spot; I like to go back there every now and then, but I try to keep myself on my toes."
Luke must have been on his very tippy toes while working on his latest project because he takes us far, far away from his comfort zones. Listening to the tracks from the self-titled debut from Here We Go Magic, you will be hard pressed to find a single thread from a country ballad. Instead as Daytrotter puts it, “It has a feel of the cremated ashes of an old body strewn about the breezes already, dancing over grass blades and ramming into trees, disintegrating into lakes along the way, but generally still traveling as long as there’s room to travel”a contrast to what the words are actually asking, pleading for.”
Believe it or not, it’s a lot easier to get press for your band now than it was five years ago. You have the blogosphere to thank for that people. And since anyone can be a published writer, the opportunities for press coverage have increased exponentially.
When you’re starting to compile press clips from scratch, we suggest you concentrate your efforts on blogs. Here’s why:
1. Blogs are more accessible. Most are operated by single individuals working from home, as opposed to the complicated infrastructure of major publications. In other words, you’ll have more luck getting a response from a blogger than the managing editor of Rolling Stone.
2. Blogs are better predictors of what’s hot. There are a few reasons for this ”the youth factor, less bureaucracy and processes, the fact that most bloggers write for passion and not a paycheck. And you’d better believe that the senior editors of major Websites, magazines and newspapers are avid blog readers.
3. Blogs have less rivalry, more eyeballs. Bloggers have a symbiotic relationship with one another. You’ll notice that many music blogs will link to each other, which increases the traffic on each site.
Choosing The Right Blogs
The rules here are simple: Look for blogs that cover your kind of music. Check the dates on each post to ensure that the blog is updated regularly. Look and see if readers are actively commenting on the posts. And, above all else, make sure the blogger knows how to write! No one will be impressed by a press quote that sounds like it was written by a four-year-old.
Here some of the most trafficked music blogs out there in cyberspace. Take a look, and be sure to check out the external sites that each is linking to. This will clue you in on the most salient blogs.
Gorilla Vs. Bear
My Old Kentucky Blog
An Aquarium Drunkard
2 Dope Boyz
I Guess I’m Floating
Large Hearted Boy
Music (For Robots)
Muzzle of Bees
Getting The Press Machine Rolling
Before you reach out to bloggers, do a little research. See if you can dig up the name of the person behind the generic email address ”if you can, use it. Give a brief introduction (one or two lines) and mention any cool recognition you’ve received. Always include direct links to your MP3s! The less clicking a blogger does to hear your music, the better. Keep track of each person you email, and give them a week to respond. After that, it’s OK to follow-up. If you still don’t get a response after following up twice, move on. There are plenty of other bloggers to fry. Uh, you know what we mean.
Here’s the dirty truth of music scribes everywhere: none of us have a clue where to find the next big thing. While we spend a fair amount of time looking under rocks, we are by nature lazy. Instead, we simply keep our trained ears attuned to what our trusted sources are listening to on their ipod or watching play in some dank basement club. Since we are judged by our ability to unearth noteworthy new artists, we guard this insider information closely.
You see, there is no true epicenter of the industry buzz machine. No secret mount on high from which oracles herald the coming of each new indie darling. But, if you were to hold a hot poker to a music critics eye and demand they name their trusted sources, they would begrudgingly cry out, Daytrotter!
Yes, just off the Interstate in aptly named Rock Island, Ill., Sean Moeller openly runs this critic darling, for those in the know Website highlighting new music discovery for general consumption. While there are a glut of music-centered sites with ten times the amount of visitors, none speak as sweetly to true music geeks as Daytrotter. The premise is relatively simple: invite bands into the studio, ask them to record a few original songs and post the resulting sessions on the site. Yet Moeller succeeds where so many other more richly funded operations fail; in being authentic and unabashedly homespun.
With a small cast of web designers, music engineers and amazingly hip illustrators, Daytrotter is nothing more than a glorified pit stop for van bands headed West out of Chicago on the road to fame, fortune and endless Taco Bell. Yet, the hospitality and love for all things music is so genuine, artists end up leaving behind tracks drenched in raw splendor and inspiration. Intimate sets by the Fleet Foxes, Bon Iver, Bonnie Prince Billy, and Blitzen Trapper are instant classics. However, the real beauty comes in discovering truly twisted downloads of The Walkmen reading scenes from a Sex & The City script with deadpan aplomb or re-introducing a jaded hack like me to the Cold War Kids after summarily dismissing them based solely on their single.
Moeller and Daytrotter shine a warm light on the overlooked. Like a cool high school English tutor who corrects your grammar but doesn’t take credit for your term paper, Daytrotter schools you on the latest music but let you claim bragging rights when playing your hot new mix tape. Even though exposing this insider secret feels like a surfer broadcasting the secret spot or a magician showing the audience the sleight of hand, the truth sets you free. And, really, the world needs more people who care about discovering new music.
While you are exploring all that Daytrotter has to offer, check out some past OurStage artists who have been featured on the site: