Soundtrax: February Blues

February Blues by OurStage on Grooveshark

For those of us not living in the Sunshine State, we’ve been facing some pretty harsh cold spells lately. And those of us in the Northeast this weekend, well, we’re about to get smothered in snow. When the weather is dipping below zero degrees, and you can’t leave the house without five layers and some seriously dependable thermal wear, you just might get what I like/hate to call the February blues. To help you cope, we’ve put together a Soundtrax that’s full of songs honoring this increasingly chilly month. Enjoy.

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Help Your Favorite Alt Rockers Win Strings From Ernie Ball

Alt Rockers Vie For Free Strings From Ernie Ball

Participants must be thirteen (13) years of age or older at time of entry and must reside within the forty-eight (48) contiguous United States. Only submission materials that are determined, at the sole discretion of the Sponsors, to be classified as Alternative as defined on the OurStage FAQ’s will be deemed valid entries.


February Monthly OurStage Prize Winners

Every month, OurStage awards prizes to over forty top-ranked artists in a wide variety of genres. Join us in congratulating these many OurStage members for their achievements in February 2011!

Keep listening, keep discovering, keep judging. Next month, maybe it will be your favorite artist making it to the top!

Grand Prize Winners

Top-ranked artists in the seven finals channels win $1,000 to go toward recording their next album, funding their next tour, getting new gear or anything else to take their career to the next level!

Click on the artist’s name to view their profile, or click on the song title to listen to their winning song.

Urban Winner: Xavier MarquisOpen Letter

Xavier Marquis started his first rap group when he was only 10 years old, kickstarting his journey into the music industry. He started his own production company, working with a variety of artists before focusing on his own music in 2009. He plans to release his second mixtape this year.

Rock Winner: EnationBurst Wide Open

Enation is a rock band with a bright future. Since they started making music in 2004, they’ve had songs featured on shows such as “One Tree Hill” and “General Hospital”, and played with a variety of artists in many prestigious venues. Their new album is set to be released this year.

Country Winner: Jenna BrysonYou & I

When she’s not making music, Jenna Bryson makes her living by portraying princesses at kids’ birthday parties. She says “I am not that which dreams are made of; I am not the picture of success. Yet.” But with her history of placing in the top of many OurStage competitions, it looks like Jenna is on her way.

Pop Winner: Adrina Thorpe Everything Changes

Adrina Thorpe cites heartache, silence and solitude as some of her songwriting inspirations, but her catchy pop music is the opposite of depressing. This is illustrated in her constant reappearance in the OurStage charts”she’s placed in the Top 10 in a variety of competitions over the past year.

Specialty Winner: TeazerNever Been Any Reason

Teazer was formed in 1979, and split up four years later. In 2010, Teazer took the stage together once again for a reunion concert, and it all took off from there”all members agree that despite their 20-year hiatus, “the best is yet to come”. Congratulations on their first OurStage win!

Video Winner: Orange AvenueJust Refrain

Florida natives Orange Avenue released their first album in 2007, and they’ve since had the opportunity to share the stage with artists such as All American Rejects and Rihanna”and that’s just the beginning. They have a strong presence at OurStage, regularly placing in the Top 10 in the rock and video channels. Their video for “Just Refrain” has quickly risen to the top of the OurStage charts.

Pro Performance Winner: Motel DriveDrifter Blues

As Motel Drive puts it, “the slinky-rootsy-greasy-country-rock’n’roll-rockabilly music carries you off to that lone bar on the edge of town, the one mama told you to stay away from, where Gretsch guitars wail, an upright bass slaps you around and voodoo drums pound away.” This description is perfectly illustrated in their live video for “Drifter Blues”.

Channel Winners

The artist in the Number 1 spot in each regular channel at the end of the month is awarded a $100 gift code.

Wanna hear/see the highest ranked music in all OurStage genres? Check out the audio and video playlists below.

OurStage Best Predictors

Fans who judge battles with the highest degree of accuracy are rewarded as “Best Predictors” with Amazon gift codes. Meet January’s Top 3 individuals who have an outstanding ear for identifying talent and help build the foundation for the other members of the OurStage community.

Gold Predictor Winner: shiningtear

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Silver Predictor Winner: rathsam

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Bronze Predictor Winner: sometimeafter

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Click here to view the full monthly winners page.

Judge In The Ernie Ball Alternative Country Channel!

Do you find yourself rocking out to Wilco on a daily basis? Does Ryan Adams frequent your iTunes top-played list more than you’d like to admit? Well OurStage may just have a channel that’s right up your alley. This month, artists in the Alternative Country Channel are competing for a year’s supply of free strings and accessories from Ernie Ball. In case you were wondering, a prize like that is a huge benefit to any up-and-coming musician, especially those who aspire to hold rank with artists the likes of Neil Young, My Morning Jacket and Son Volt. Your musical expertise is needed to help filter the best artists to the top of the channel, and in return you can discover some truly awesome new music along the way. So what are you waiting for? You can take part in discovering the next big thing in alternative country music. Head to the channel now and let your voice be heard. But hurry, judging closes February 26th!

Atlanta Pop Rock Quartet The Well Reds Perform At New Music Seminar 2011

Every year, the New Music Seminar (NMS) gathers the innovators of the modern music industry under one roof to discuss the state of the business and what’s on the horizon for upcoming years. This year, NMS teamed up with OurStage to give one artist a shot to perform at the 2011 closing party in Los Angeles at The Roxy Nightclub, where artists the likes of Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and David Bowie have taken the stage. In addition, one lucky fan won round trip airfare and 2 free tickets to attend the conference and closing party just for liking OurStage on Facebook!

Atlanta pop-rock quartet The Well Reds stepped up to the artist challenge and entered their song  6 More Months, which climbed all the way to the Number 1 spot at the top of the channel landing them the gig. Facebook fan Becky Clawson won the fan prize and got to attend the conference and hang out at the closing party, attended by Pete Edge (President A&R Jive Records), Courtney Holt (MySpace Music) and OurStage’s own Ben Campbell to name a few. Fresh off their performance at The Roxy, Torin of The Well Reds sat down with us to talk about their performance experience. Check it out below!

OS: Did you get to meet any music biz big whigs at the party?

WR: We were very fortunate to meet and speak with a variety of industry executives. The “biz big whigs” were incredibly generous in taking a lot of time to speak with the attendees after the panel discussions. We were very impressed with the diversity and scope of music topics covered at the New Music Seminar. The panelists really represented an incredibly eclectic mix of music professionals¦ A&R, Marketing, Booking/Tours, Merchandise/Artists.

OS: Did you have an elevator pitch prepared in case you bumped into any major players?

WR: Not really. There was a lot of pitching going on and it was pretty obvious that a firm handshake and a polite “hello-my-name-is” worked much better than “I am the next big thing, you need to sign me.” We had flyers for our show at the Roxy with show information and band links that we personally handed out to as many of the panelists and attendees as we could. In the event that an industry executive was taking the red-eye out or not planning to attend the show we asked if it would be appropriate to give them a copy of our EP.

OS: What do you think the future holds in store for the music business? Where do the Well Reds fit into this future?

WR: I think the music business will continue to evolve. One of the biggest themes in the seminar was that is does us all a disservice to hold on to the romanticized idea of what was. There are artists that are still finding success throughout multiple traditional and digital media platforms, licensing songs, writing hits, building their fan base¦ I would hope that as The Well Reds continue to grow as a group, we will find sincere opportunities get our music out for others to enjoy. Our goal it to work hard, be professional, and to conduct ourselves in a manner where regardless of where we end up, we can look back without regrets wishing we had done this or that. I think Ourstage is a perfect example of a present day platform that can sincerely provide artists with an opportunity to reach a wide and educated audience. For contest winners, the experiences can be truly career changing.

OS: What was it like gigging in LA? Have you guys ever played there before?

WR: This was the first time we’d collectively played in LA as The Well Reds and it was really great to get to play at the Roxy. We went to the NMS Artist On The Verge contest the night before and were totally blown away with the band the The Daylights. When it came time for us to play we felt very comfortable in the venue. I cannot say enough nice things about the folks at NMS and the staff at the Roxy. Keith, Alex, Sam, Dave, Tom¦ all great professional.

OS: How did the audience respond to your performance?

WR: The audience was great and we definitely made some new friends. We usually measure show effectiveness based on the response of the sound man and Alex (from the Roxy) was very complimentary of our set. We were also able to get some folks out from some of the LA based companies we’ve been working with. Thanks go out specifically to Mike, Mitch, Cindi, Caitlin, Travis and Ramy for attending the show.

OS: How did you get your fans to come out and judge in the competition?

WR: We asked nicely and often on Facebook. I also think there was some residual Ourstage support from when one of our other songs “Violet” placed third in the public voting for the Ourstage Subway Fresh Artist competition a few months back.

OS: Are there any shout outs you’d like to make to the fans who voted for you?

WR:Just that we’re very appreciative of the time that people continue to invest in our band.

OS: What was the most valuable thing you learned at NMS?

WR: As a band we’ve been working with the understanding that each member has to take on a variety of roles within the group. The idea propagated by NMS that really resonated with me is that regardless of who you’re working with or what level of success you’ve achieved it is still absolutely imperative that you’re personally working on the different facets of your career: booking, licensing, perfuming, booking¦ No A&R rep, manager, or booker is going to instantly magically make it so you don’t have to work hard anymore.