Wednesday, December 12, 2012

R,ILY is 78% Contagious

Blogs to Blog about...



Monster Entertainment band Revolution, I Love You's song, "Not So Sure," was rated 78% contagious by blog The Glitter Pox.


If you ask me, that's pretty contagious. Check out the blog for the full review....   I-M

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Dayseam @ The Legendary Dobbs 11/30!


Already have plans for tomorrow night? Ditch 'em or switch 'em! You won't want to miss an awesome show by Dayseam at Dobbs! Starting at 8pm you can grab yourself a drink and checkout an awesome lineup- Dayseam, The Hawkeyes, The Late Ancients, Hero Jr., and Above Connecticut. Did I mention it's only $10 at the door? Word on the street is Dayseam will be handing out some pretty cool stickers at the show...who doesn't like free stickers?!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Mock Suns @ KungFu Necktie 12/6




If you’re looking for some affordable, crafty beers and original music that'll be worthy of your Thursday night, come check out the Mock Suns at their next show on December 6th at KungFu Necktie. If you missed them at Johnny Brenda’s last month, they’ve got a couple new tracks and some posters on the way. The $10 show roster also includes Bear Hands, an upbeat indie-rock outfit from Brooklyn, and Son Step, a folk-garage band representing Philly.  Grab your tickets here, and don’t forget to RSVP on Facebook


Mock Suns

Son Step

Bear Hands



AlexisCanary
alexiscanary@WeAreMonsterEnt.com

Monday, November 26, 2012

How many songs are right for an album?

This always makes for interesting conversation, if you ask me. I've worked with a decent amount of acts throughout my lifetime in the Indie world. Many albums, many EPs, singles what have you. One question that repeatedly suffaces, "How many songs should be on the project?" When I first began, I would have probably answered that question with, "Well if it's an album 10-12. If it's an EP 3-5. Single 1-2...." so on and so forth. *smacks head* Today, my answer is much different. If I were to be asked that question today. I would probably reply with, "Well how many are good?" "How many fit what you are trying to accomplish?" "Do they work together?"


Another thing to consider. The law of averages. Let's do some quick math....

Let's say you record 10 songs for your upcoming 10 song album. What's the probability that one of those songs will reallly hit it big? The answer... no one knows, BUT we can probably say with confidence that it's not 10/10. Let's say for the sake of argument that it's 1/10, which is seriously more likely and also the worse possible scenario. If this is the case, are you really doing yourself justice by only recording 10 songs?

Think about it....

Here's a quick word of advice. Take your time. Record, Record RECORD. Be patient. Most importantly, stop hitting the studio as if you are the next coming of John Lennon, because most likely you aren't.... at least not yet. Never go into creating an album with a set amount of tracks in mind. Just create. Create your ass off. Increase your odds! Record over 20 for a EP. Record over 50 for an album! Sound crazy? Not really... just ask T.I.

www.billboard.com T.I. Cover Story

The day before he was scheduled to turn in "Trouble Man," his last album under his current deal with Atlantic, T.I. spoke to Billboard about where he's been and where he's going, and how he hopes to get there from here.

You're turning in the album tomorrow. How does it feel?
[laughs] It's a blessing. It's a blessing to be at this stage in my career and continue to have, I guess, enough relevance to have an anticipated project. I'm real proud of it -- I just hope everybody else will enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it.

You recorded more than 100 songs for the album, right?
Yeah, it was like 126, 127, something like that.

Do you usually do that much work going into an album?
This might be the first time we cracked 100. Usually it's like 50 or 60. There's always an abundance of material.

Think about it!

I-M

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Worldwide Digital Distribution

For those of you who visit our family of websites on a regular basis, I'm sure you have seen our ads for digital distribution. For those that haven't, I'll give a quick run down on both the distribution and on the background's of the companies offering.

My name is Isaac Gordon, I started this blog back in 2005 as a place to discuss, promote, review and emphasize Philadelphia and the surrounding area's independent music and entertainment scene. Through countless blog posts, updates, live shows, festivals, research and just plain falling in love, my passion for music in Philadelphia grew. In 2009, I was inspired to open a management company aptly named Monster Entertainment LLC. My goal, when starting Monster Entertainment, was to establish a solid, local, independent artist management firm that boasts a strong focus on product development in a digital world. Today, along with the two bands that the company manages (The Quelle Source and Revolution, I Love You), Monster Entertainment has grown to include worldwide digital distribution in its services through a partnership with Redeye USA.

I moved to the Delaware Valley in 2004 in an attempt to further my career in radio/TV. I'm originally from Akron, Ohio, a Wilmington, DE sized city about 30-40 mins south of Cleveland. My introduction to music was around the age of 14. I was 1/3 of a Hip Hop group named Renegade Squad, a solo artist, an engineer and I produced beats for a handful of artists in and around northeast Ohio (mostly Hip Hop). I fell into radio while in college. I was always passionate about media, however there was a large part of me that hoped it all would lead me closer to music. In a way it did.

So, back to the present. In addition to the above, I also work as Vice President of A&R for an upstart record label based out of Charlotte, NC called BIMMG (Black Ink Management and Music Group LLC). I also program websites for a small graphic arts company based out of Chicago called Three12Design (www.three12design.com), but that's another story. Let's just say I have a hard time sitting still. Anyways, back to BIMMG. BIMMG carries worldwide physical AND digital distribution through a partnership with Bungalo Records and Universal Music Group Distribution. BIMMG is owned by VA native, Ron Hatchett. In the early 90's, Ron also was a Hip Hop artist, except he toured with the likes of Tupac and DPG (Dogg Pound). A year or so ago, Ron's passion for music brought him to create BIMMG, an all service music group who also maintains a strong focus on product development in a digital world. How did Ron and I link up as business partners? That happened through a shared relationship with Hip Hop artist EasiMoney aka I.E., again, that's another story.

Two small, Indie start ups (BIMMG/Monster Ent) navigating the dark waters of the current entertainment industry. Both offering worldwide digital distribution to artists. What does this all mean exactly???? Why would an artist come to a management company for digital distribution? So, as I stated earlier, we have been fielding a lot of questions regarding the service and figured it would be a good idea to do a blog post providing as much information as possible.

To start off, I would like to share we are all very thankful and lucky to be able to offer these services to artists. Both Redeye and Bungalo are great organizations, and each relationship has been strong to date. So, what is a digital aggregator?

Digital Aggregators: These people supply all the content to digital music retailers. They are the middle men between artists and online retail stores such as iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Rhapsody and so on. If you want to be distributed digitally, you will need to go through a digital aggregator.

Who are they? Well, unless you have been living under a rock. Actually, even people under rocks would know this. Unless you have been living on another planet, you've heard of TuneCore, Reverbnation and CD Baby. I think it's safe to say these three are the top indie aggregators at the moment. So, these companies take your music and deliver it to the stores. Each one has a different way of making it happen in terms of costs, contract, process, fees, etc. These three companies could be considered the founding father's of the indie digital sales movement. They're great because they make it possible for all artists to be sold by major digital retail outlets. If these companies had of never existed, independent artists may still be fighting to be sold on a large scale.

For more information, check out this nifty comparison chart - www.mosesavalon.com/digital-distributors-choose-the-right-one-for-you

Direct to Fan:  There's also direct to fan digital outlets like Bandcamp that are excellent, but these companies don't deliver product directly to iTunes for example. So, they don't necessarily fall under the digital aggregator label. Well, at least not yet they don't.

Other Avenues:  So, where do companies like Monster Entertainment and BIMMG fall into the discussion? Good question. In addition to Indie digital aggregators, who are mostly concerned with the individual artist, there are also major and independent distribution companies who deal mostly with record labels and entertainment companies. ME and BIMMG, because of direct partnerships with major and independent distribution companies, are able to offer the amenities of major digital aggregators.
Redeye USA, founded in 1996, currently distributes such labels as Marsalis Music, Barsuk Records, Warp Records, Daptone Records, Kill Rock Stars, Hydra Head Records, The Mylene Sheath and Bella Union Records. Redeye also distributes artist-run labels by artists such as Widespread Panic, Cake, The Donnas, Public Enemy, Iris DeMent, Anti-Flag, Ariel Pink, and David Byrne. Redeye USA also has two in-house labels: Yep Roc Records and Eleven Thirty Records. Their customers include every major music retailer in the U.S. including chains such as Best Buy, Borders and f.y.e., independent stores and sub-distros throughout the country including all members of the major independent store coalitions (A.I.M.S., C.I.M.S, and Music Monitor Network) as well as every domestic one-stop distributor including Alliance Entertainment Corporation (A.E.C.), EDGE Entertainment Distribution, Baker & Taylor Inc. and Super D. Redeye also exports records to Canada, Europe, Asia and Australia and provides a digital distribution service that delivers content to iTunes, eMusic, Rhapsody and many other digital music stores. They have won the National Association of Recording Merchandisers Distributor of the Year Award (Small Division) seven times (2000, 2002–2007) and were re-designated as a Medium Division distributor by NARM in 2008.

Bungalo Records gives BIMMG the power of UMGD's (Universal Music Group Distribution) digital distribution network, which is currently the largest in the world. So, picture Redeye USA, but on a major level with global reach.

So, regarding how it all works, that's really it in a nutshell.

Us vs. Them: So, why should an artist choose us over them? You had to of known that there would be a value proposition placed in here somewhere right? Well, let's look at it this way. It's not so much of an us vs. them type of deal as it is an opportunity for an independent artist to put a few more people on his or her team in terms of marketing and publicity at virtually the same risk/costs of a major digital aggregator. Our services aren't offered to everyone and our deals aren't open to the public. Trust me when I say we aren't rivaling any of the big three indie aggregators in any way. It's truly our goal to break an artist, therefore it's in our best interest to promote, and to push for prime placement of our products. We invest time and money into promoting our releases. And, not to in any way knock the process of a major digital aggregator, especially one of the big three because they have truly provided a great service for indie musicians, but we are a bit more focused on quality not quantity.

Bottom Line: At the end of the day it all depends on how the artist views his or her business. What does the artist value? Some artists have a hard time giving away any percentage of their record sales regardless of the offer. Others don't mind as long as it makes cents.
Does it make cents? As long as you remember this equation, 20% of $0 = $0, you should be fine. Unless you are bringing in the big bucks already, don't be so hesitant to add to your team. Just make sure that it makes cents. If you are bringing in less than $5k per year in record sales, you can probably afford to dish out some more points for help. Don't be so greedy... it will get you nowhere. Exposure is far more important the earlier you are in your career.

FAQ: So, I'll use the rest of this post to briefly answer some questions that I've received when speaking to artists about digital distribution.

Why do we need to go through you? Can't we just go directly to Redeye or Bungalo? Look, we are not in business to hold any artist back from building any sort of relationship they desire. Feel free to communicate to whomever you want whenever you want. However, if I may provide more insight. Remember earlier in this post when I compared distribution companies to independent aggregators? Companies like Redeye and Bungalo typically prefer to deal with labels or companies that are either established, with a budget or involved in developing a decent roster of acts. It's like a one stop shop for them. It's not in their interest to handle distribution submissions from a million different developing artists. Deep down, I'm sure a company like Redeye would like to. Unfortunately, it's just not a feasible business model for them. This is why companies like Tune Core, Reverbnation and CD Baby exist. Companies like BIMMG and ME are here to aid in product development. It's our goal to get you to that next level.

What type of budget are you offering my artist if we were to sign with you? This is not a record deal. This is a distribution deal based on a licensing agreement. So, basically the artist gives us permission via a license to distribute their original material and we distribute it through our network. We will not in any way own the material submitted to us. Therefore, we don't deal in points, we deal in percentages. These percentages are based on what the artist is seeking. If you are simply seeking distribution and nothing else, you will most likely see a bottom line rate assessed that's similar to CDBaby's. We don't charge any set up fees or ask for yearly payments. However, even in this instance we still promote our releases and seek optimal retail placements. Sounds like a win, win to me. Now, if you are seeking a specific amount of promotion along with your distribution. Then, we begin to access costs for specific services and outline a negotiated percentage structure that makes cents for both sides. Artists managed by either company receive special rates.

What type of promotion do you offer? Both ME and BIMMG have the ability to offer a multitude of promotional services, however it all depends on budget and project need. We have an in house staff of ten that works tirelessly, day in and day out, promoting our artists and projects. We have built solid connections within the industry that allow us to service everything from record pools to record labels. As a result of the deals with our parent companies we are offered access to networks that would normally cost additional out of network. Whether publicity, licensing, radio or web building if we can do it and it makes sense we will, if not, we do hire out and we do invest.

Do you offer distribution for labels? We do offer distribution for labels, either on a per project basis or for a term.

What if my songs are on iTunes and I want to do a re-release through you? Unfortunately, we can't release material to iTunes if it is already in iTunes. We only deal with original, cleared, unreleased material. The songs would need to be removed from the system before being submitted to us.

How long are your terms? We typically work on a per project basis for 1-2 years.

What if we get started and then we hate it? Look, the last thing that I would ever want to do is force someone to work with me. It kills my mood and I like my mood alive. If you get started and you feel like we aren't doing a good job, then you can leave. No questions asked. We will stop all promo, unlicense your material and have it removed from our systems. Life goes on and everyone is happy again.

How do I apply for distribution? Send us a demo! Please don't send us actual mp3s. Links to your music and/or Facebook page is fine. Emails are info@blackinkmmg.com and info@wearemonsterent.com

Who put the bop in the bopshubopshubop? We don't know the answer to this question unfortunately. However, if I were to guess I would say Liam Neeson.

THANKS for taking the time to read through this. This post will probably be updated on occasion with more information and/or answers to additional questions as we move along. My hope for now is that I've at least been able to shed some light on our company backgrounds and service offerings. If there's anything here that's unclear or that needs further explanation please, don't hesitate to reach out!

I-M

www.WeAreMonsterEnt.com
www.BlackInkMMG.com
www.RedEyeUSA.com
www.BungaloRecords.com

Friday, November 2, 2012

Case Closed performing on 104.5 Live at 5!



Photo Recap: The Mock Suns Johnny Brenda's 10/20

The Mock Suns put on another unique and captivating show last month at Johnny Brenda’s alongside The Great American Canyon Band, Fenster, and Oldermost. This time, the band was fully equip with not only their classic looping telephone, but also two small light boxes filled with items you may find at the Philadelphia Zoo. If you missed it, check out a quick photo recap of the night.



The Mock Suns:






The Great American Canyon Band:


Fenster:




Oldermost: 





For more info on these talented bands, check out the links below.

The Mock Suns

The Great American Canyon Band

Fenster

Oldermost

Monday, October 29, 2012

Here Comes #Sandy


idk I think it could be a bit bigger. Oh, don't mind me. I've always had hurricane envy.

Irene was pretty scary. Let's compare.


I hope I have enough milk, bread, eggs and water! Nothin like a Hurricane bread cake to make it all better!


Friday, October 19, 2012

"Jacob's Ladder" Soundtrack and Film Release


If you’re looking for a good way to fill your rainy weekend, make some time this Sunday for the premiere of Jacob’s Ladder at Filmtech in South Philly. The short film, written, directed, filmed and edited locally by J. Randolph Brown of Steady State Productions, tells the surreal story of a 20-something who finds an endless ladder in his backyard one day and what happens when he climbs it. Monsters own, The Quelle Source, and indie-rockers, The Chairman Dances, have contributed brand new singles for the short, and will each play 30-minute sets at the premiere.

For a look into the films beginnings and a deeper understanding of its music, check out our interview below with J. Randolph Brown and Dan Wisniewski and Dan Comly of The Quelle Source.



How did you come into the film making business, specifically music videos?

Jonathan: Well, I guess it started with a guy from my old job needing me to film something for him. He's a hard style DJ (which is not exactly my scene), but he gets a whole laser light show going and wanted it filmed. Anyway, he had me borrow the camera for a few days to get used to it. I'd dabbled in digital photography before but never had my own video camera. This was right around the time the Quelle Source was getting ready to record "Enjoy the Ridge", so I figured I'd film a few of their shows, and everything kind of took off from there. The video for "Creepy" came out of that footage, and I've since gotten better equipment of my own to do more projects.



So you and the Quelle Source (TQS) have a good amount of history; how did you all become acquainted?

Jonathan: We met at Saint Joe's University. I was playing bass in a band with a bunch of guys I met there. We were all in the class a year older than most of the guys in TQS.
Dan Wisniewski: Yeah, the band was called Count Robocula. We played at least one show with them and stayed friends even after we all graduated SJU in 2007/2008.

I noticed a lot of the work you've done lately, Jon, are all individual music videos. Tell me about them, and what inspired you to choose these three artists for the project?

Jonathan: The first videos with TQS just kind of came together when I started sifting through all the footage I had. They're all great guys, so it was easy to just hang out and film. I have a bunch of live footage, as well as a lot of footage just documenting the recording process for "Enjoy the Ridge". Once the album came out I got the idea for “Creepy”, which has live footage, and a pre-existing portfolio of digital stills from graveyards around Philadelphia. I didn't really have that in mind while I was filming, but I was pleased with how it turned out. Eric from the Chairman Dance saw the videos I'd done for TQS and asked me if I'd like to work with them on one of their songs. We'd met before and were already friends, so that project was a lot of fun too.

For this project, well, really they're just great guys and amazing songwriters. Music for films in tough; you either need fantastic musicians who you can trust to understand your vision (at the risk of sounding pretentious for using the word "vision")...or wade through hours and hours of music trying to find the right track, and then cutting through miles of red tape to use it legally (not to mention the fees) and then still have something that wasn't truly written for your purpose. I was lucky to have the former in guys like TQS, the Chairman Dances, and Sam. They did a fantastic job. I could not have asked for better tracks.

Can you all give us more insight on the development of the music?

Dan Wisniewski: I read the script over and went home to work on the song that afternoon.  I actually really relished the deadline that we had - we haven't had a deadline in a while, so that felt good to just sit down and try to bang something out. I wrote a very small part of the song, particularly the chorus, then took that to the rest of the band and we finished 95% of the track in one practice. It was super collaborative which was really life affirming. It felt good to work hard, come up with something worthwhile that really worked.

Dan Comly: It really just came at a good time in the work cycle for our band. We felt super prepared for the project and it was cool to be asked to contribute a song for a film.

How long was the project for both parties from start to finish?

Dan W: I can't quite remember the deadline but it was a couple weeks, which is a short time for us to write, record, mix and master something considering we can only practice once a week. It was great to have that fire lit under us.

Jonathan: Yeah, I put a bit of pressure on these guys in terms of the deadline. I wrote the first draft of the story on June 13th. It started out as an essay, and I honestly didn't think it would translate to film but it was one of those things that wouldn't get out of my head. I couldn't really move on to other writing projects before I got this one on paper. Over time I kind of worked out the things that were bugging me. Once I had a clear idea for a film I just converted the essay to a screenplay. By then it must have been early July. I approached the bands about having the songs ready my mid-August. The filming was done by the last week in August (barring minor tweaks and touch ups for this upcoming screening).

That's pretty quick work. Was there a defining "Ah Ha" moment that inspired the idea behind the paper originally?

Jonathan: Not really. It was one of those things that slowly unfolded in my head. By the time I got around to writing it down, the whole story was already formulated. I actually wrote the first draft on my phone on the bus to New York.

There you go! How about for the Quelle Source?

Dan W: Well, I read the script and immediately went home to start working. When I write I usually just start trying to find a melody around what I come up with and then see what words come out (your unconscious can be pretty awesome sometimes). What came out was the chorus, which ended up being a fairly dead-on summary of the movie -"I set sail on a falling out with my head cocked and a puzzled look". Then it was just filling in the rest, which dealt a lot with getting inside Jacob's brain. If you read the script (and subsequently see the movie), you really feel for him - his girlfriend broke up with him, he's got a weird ladder in his yard - and it's not that much of a leap for him to question his sanity. so most of the song is really trying to marry Jacob's actions with Jacob's thoughts, and sometimes they weren't always aligned, which causes dissonance, frustration, etc.

That emotion definitely comes across. After listening to the soundtrack, I feel I can visualize the mood changes throughout the film. Will viewers be happy in the end?

Jonathan: That's tough to answer... Will they be happy because they saw a good movie? I hope so

Dan W: Haha

Jonathan: Will they say "I really like that character, I'm happy for him because of the ending"? That's to be determined.

Anything else you’d like readers to know?

Dan C: I'm thinking about what similarities there are in writing endings in music and film. Eventually you get to the point where you have to think about how to end the song, as I’m sure Jon had to make a decision about how to end the film and whether or not you want to resolve that tension. I think the instrumental second half of Set Sail is a classic way to end a song without a definite musical resolution.

Dan W: I agree, we struggled immensely with the end of the song. We kept trying to make things more and more complicated. I have a memory of our other guitarist, Kevin Ryan, playing about 15 different chords in a row until we finally took a step back and said, “I don’t think this is working”. The first half of Set Sail is this start-stop madness; it's confusing, which I think lines up well with Jacob's confusion. But, at about the 3:00 mark, the song sort of opens up and feels like the Ah-Ha moment in the music.

Dan C: Basically you have two minutes of, I don't know how many layered guitars and piano tracks, to think about the answers to the lyrics.

Jonathan: One of the reasons that I think the song is so amazing is because it captures the film on its own. It’s not practical to just play the song straight through in its entirety during the film. It works incredibly well when it's used, and that's great. But when you take it out of the context, it has a way of capturing the film on its own. The two projects work well together, but they're linked even as standalone entities.  


Folks, $8 will get you into the premiere and a hard copy of the soundtrack. For supporting local music and film makers, I'd say it's a deal you shouldn't miss.


Links:

The Quelle Source



Alexis Canary
alexis@wearemonsterent.com


I Bet "You Won't"

You Won't - "Three Car Garage" from You Won't on Vimeo.


I can't stop watching this video or listening to the song. I listened to it over and over again on my way back home from Milkboy. I think I may be obsessed. It's so catchy and poppy and dancey. Go ahead listen to it. Maaaaybe you will be the first to hate it, Ehh I bet "You Won't."

I-M

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Dynasty Electric's On the Rise



I know we’ve all had that moment when a surprisingly awesome, unknown song starts playing on the radio and your friend next to you yells in excitement, “HEY, I KNOW THIS BAND!”. Well folks, this is your glaringly obvious chance to be that friend. Dynasty Electric has been knocking on the doors to fame for the last year or so now, with the release of two creatively crafted music videos (Golden Arrows” and “Eye WideOpen) and an extensive national summer tour. Not to mention, Golden Arrows was picked up for a Victoria’s Secret ad earlier this year (Watch it here). Check out our interview below with Dynasty Electric’s, Jenny Electrik and Seth Misterka.

How was the concept formed for your video, Golden Arrows?

Jenny Electrik and a friend bought an old school bus and transformed it into an environmentally friendly bus known as the Green Bus. We were using it for some tours and trips, and one day, as we were riding around, I had the idea to shoot a music video while the bus drove around the city. So one afternoon we pulled up to the office of our record label at the time - Dame Dash's BluRoc Records in TriBeca - loaded everyone there including other musicians, rappers, and the label crew onto the bus.  We cranked up the track, drove around, and allowed it to happen in its own way while the cameras rolled.

How'd you pick the volunteers on the bus?

We recruited some friends, and the rest were all the folks at BluRoc Records that day. Dame Dash, Ski Beatz, McKenzie Eddy, SriKala, John Cave, Brady Watt, Shimon Hikri...

Did you run into any trouble during the shoot?

None at all, it went totally smoothly. We definitely got some funny looks though!

Compare the making of this video with some of your more conceptual ones, for example Eye Wide Open.
 
Golden Arrows is a totally organic video that gives a slice of our life in New York.  It was really just at matter of letting the cameras roll, and editing it together, so it was relatively easy to make.  The director Dennis Feitosa did a great job with the editing and color correction.  Eye Wide Open, on the other hand, delves into an imaginary, illusory world of smoke and shadow.  It was quite difficult to achieve technically, but I love the results.  The director John Fitzgerald really killed it with the special effects on this one.

What does the video and idea of golden arrows mean to you?

To me, to shoot golden arrows is to give whatever you do your best shot, to put your all into it, to put your love into it and send it out into the world.



If you can swing it, don't miss Dynasty Electric at NYC's CMJ Music Marathon on October 16-20. Also performing are artists such as Kimbra, GZA, and Hey Rosetta! (Get more information here) Be sure to keep your radios loud for this talented duo in your hometown!

Links:


Alexis Canary
Alexis@WeAreMonsterEnt.com


Monday, September 17, 2012

Post Tour Recap with Melissa Cox


Hey Philly! Melissa Cox is fresh off of her Harmonious Maladies Tour and was kind enough to talk to me about her time on the stage, off the stage, and everything in between (including a tornado!).

Now that you're back and settled in from your Harmonious Maladies Tour, how did it go?!
The tour went very well. I met alot of cool people, had a little bit of beach down-time, caught up with family members, gave away alot of free download cards, caught some great videos, got some professional quality live recordings for my new Live Album (due out in November/December) and put 1,956 miles on my car!

Were you pleased with the turn out at your shows? Do you think your pre-tour efforts to reach fans in the area paid off?
Absolutely I was pleased, especially considering it was a holiday weekend. I think the pre-tour promo efforts were good. Next tour I will focus more on reaching out earlier to independent radio DJs, and perhaps invest in some Facebook ads. But overall this tour was great in terms of turnout, especially for cities where I've never played before, like Norfolk and Blackstone, VA.

How was your interview on WGMU's "The Fearless Hour" with DJ Monet?
I had a great time talking to Monet! She's so sweet and a really talented DJ. She will go very far in radio if she decides to pursue that after college. I loved her question "If you could be anyone from the 90s, real or fictional, who would it be?" I said Madonna, but after thinking about it more, I think I want to be Dana Scully from the X-Files, because then that way I can get with David Duchovny.


Did any show stand out to you as a particularly awesome experience for you and the crowd?
Honestly--and I don't say this for many tours--every single show was awesome in some way, even the ones I was unsure about before hand. I played Borjo Coffeeshop in Norfolk at Old Dominion not expecting much, but I ended up meeting alot of cool people who enjoyed the music a whole lot. I played Brodapalooza, which is a backyard house concert at fellow GoGirls Music member Brenda Barringer's farm in Appomattox. I met a ton of amazing musicians there and had a great time, and everyone walked away with CDs. Our show at Mt. Vernon Unitarian Church in Alexandria was well attended and the room had excellent acoustics, and we got great audio from that show which will be on my live CD due out the end of 2012. So yeah it was a really great time.

Were the people of MD, DC, VA, & NC receptive to your music? Did you run into any old fans or have any great experiences with new ones?
People were really receptive to my music. The most surprising show was probably in Blackstone, VA, which is several hours south Richmond. My perception was that people in that area would like country most of all. But they really liked our music. I think it was because it was something different that they usually don't hear in their area, but it still has that folk/bluegrassy familiarity to it that they can relate to. I had several old fans come to my shows in Wilmington, NC and D.C. It's always nice to see familiar faces again.

Do you have any cool stories from the road in the states you visited? Did you go to any interesting places on your time off or meet any interesting people?
Well, the psuedo-tornado I drove through trying to get to Appomattox was very scary. Wall cloud, rotating wind, the whole nine. There wasn't a funnel on the ground, but you can be sure I got out of there and fast! While I had some down time, I spent a few days with my awesome Aunt Pat and Uncle Rodger in Duck, NC. I am taking up hoop dancing (dancing with a hula hoop) so it was nice to practice on the beach. While I had some downtime in Virginia, I stopped by the birthplace of America - Jamestown. I saw where Pocahontas lived and was married, the original Jamestown church tower from 1607, and the footprint of the original James Fort, as well as a graveyard of original settlers who died in the early 1600s. It was spooky but cool, and gave me an appreciation for all that early settlers suffered and endured to build this great country.

Aside from the weather danger causing the cancellation of the Sunday Arts Fest in Annapolis, did you run into any other problems along the road?
That pre-tornado was pretty scary! No issues with the car, knock on wood. I'm very fortunate to have great family and friends who host me along the way, so that makes it alot easier and fun.

Any exciting plans coming up as far as touring goes?
Touring is taking a little bit of a break. I do have a 3-show mini tour in October - a show in D.C. and two performances at Bedford Fall Foliage Festival in PA. After that, I have some plans for some local shows in Delaware, and I will be compiling the best of my live tracks from this past year's performances on a live CD, which will be available via digital download only. You can find out more about it come October at http://www.MelissaCoxMusic.net

A big thank you to Melissa for taking the time to talk to me about her time on the road! Make sure you keep updated on Melissa's shows, news, and live CD that should be out in November/December on her website: http://www.MelissaCoxMusic.net

Also, check out--
Free downloads: http://www.melissacoxmusic.net/freemp3.html
Melissa's interview with WGMU's DJ Monet: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/47216867/Melissa%20Cox%20interview.mp3
Live Videos: http://www.youtube.com/mythicamusic




Lauren Resnick
Monster Entertainment LLC
lauren@wearemonsterent.com
www.wearemonsterent.com

Monday, September 3, 2012

Made in America



If you weren’t at the Made in America Festival or lucky enough to live around the parkway within listening distance, then you missed an amazing weekend! Hip-hop, rock, pop, EDM, whatever you wanted, you got it. And if you weren’t a fan of some of the music out there, you became one because each performer brought their best to the stage. I’m going to break up my highlights from my top favorite genres so I can try to give you a little taste of everything.


The Hip Hop:
MMG and Odd Future obviously threw it down with the crowds (including me) going wild, but I’m a Drake girl. So my favorite hip-hop performance was definitely his. He brought out 2 Chainz and French Montana to help him out for a couple songs and played the perfect mix of his own. Might I add the staff around The Rocky Tent were all loving their time with Drake and breaking it down as they sold their Buds. He even threw out his verse from The Weeknd’s “The Zone” which happens to be my favorite Drake feature, and although not many people in the crowd knew it, the guy next to me did so we got to scream it out together.


The Rock:
Two crowd favorites that I really noticed were from Miike Snow and Passion Pit since people couldn't stop dancing their way around the parkway while the two bands had their sets. Even people who weren't near the stage during either performance were grooving to the beats wherever they happened to be. I even had a couple of middle aged women walk up when Miike Snow played "Animal" asking who they were because they couldn’t stop dancing! But the biggest performance unarguably came from Pearl Jam on Sunday night. It looked like the majority of the 50,000 of us stayed to watch the set which was awesome. They played some new, some old, and of course the unforgettable moment of the weekend—99 problems with Jay-Z. Yeah, that happened.


The EDM:
My usual choice for festivals was different from what I’m used to, but nonetheless great. Although the Kandi Kids were among the minority (of course we showed love when we would find each other!), it was cool to see how much EDM has grown in America. It was crazy to watch thousands on thousands of people from all different walks of music stand together in anticipation for the drop. Just two years ago if you said you listened to electronica people thought you were a little bit weird, but now everyone’s finally embracing the weird so much so that I didn't even make it into the tent! I got to catch a few of my favorite boys, Calvin, Skrillex, Alesso, and Afrojack. Even though I had to keep to the side of the stage/tent areas because it was so crowded, their beats still got to me!

Did you think I forgot about the man himself, Jay-Z? How could I! He needs to be highlighted all on his own. The man of the weekend and the reason we were all there, Jay-Z, you did it right. His performance was ridiculous. Rumors circulated before the show about Miss B making an appearance, which don’t get me wrong would have been AMAZING, but Jay Z still outdid himself. He brought out his friends Kanye West, Big Sean, Common, Pusha T, 2 Chainz, Swizz Beats, and a few others to help him close out Saturday night with the most energetic and best performance of the whole festival. Aside from his performance, Jay-Z was just an amazing festival host. He walked through the crowds a couple times, picked the perfect artists, and I even heard he took time to catch a couple backstage performances.

While the performers all did amazing and I have no complaints on that end, I have to say the organization of the event as a whole didn’t seem to be fully thought through. I’ve been to the parkway on the 4th so I knew what to expect in terms of crowdedness, but it ended up being a lot worse than I thought. On Saturday you could tell that the organization wasn’t ready for everyone to cram in. There were so many people they actually stopped scanning tickets at one point and just ripped them because they didn’t know what to do. Also, the schedules were made to not overlap too much so that people could catch the most sets they could which sounds like an awesome plan, but put into effect made it so that the huge crowd that comfortably fit in front of The Rocky Stage, tried to cram themselves into The Freedom Tent. But the thing that did save the event in my opinion was the great sound and the screens. Whoever the sound techs for the event were need a HUGE shout out because I didn’t hear any complications and it was so clear that I had the time of my life listening from the side with absolutely no view beyond the crowd. It was an amazing accomplishment for that size of a festival!

Finally as I end my recap, I want to shout out to Jay-Z because he's obviously reading this. Jay-Z, you rock. Being able to gather at the end of both nights for two final performances with 50,000 proud Americans were memorable experiences that I am grateful to have had and the best way to end my summer. Thank you for choosing our city and bringing Americans together in the best way possible. Come back again!




Lauren Resnick
Monster Entertainment LLC
lauren@wearemonsterent.com
www.wearemonsterent.com

Friday, August 31, 2012

Melissa Cox Interview on WGMU Radio 9/6


While Melissa's on the road for the next week she'll be stopping by WGMU Radio on Thursday, September 6 @ 7:00pm for an interview with DJ Monet Sutton on "The Fearless Hour". Best part? You can tune in from anywhere in the world at http://wgmuradio.com/!

Keep posted on tour updates: http://www.melissacoxmusic.net/

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Melissa Cox's Harmonious Maladies 2012 Tour

Melissa's going on tour! Make sure you catch one of her nine stops in MD, DC, VA, and NC!


**FRI 8/31 WILMINGTON, NC- UNITY CHURCH OF WILMINGTON
SAT 9/1 FREDERICKSBURG, VA- COLONIAL TAVERN
SUN 9/2 ANNAPOLIS, MD- FIRST SUNDAY ARTS FEST
MON 9/3 KITTY HAWK, NC- OBX TRIO WINE BEER CHEESE
THU 9/6 NORFOLK, VA- BORJO COFFEEHOUSE
FRI 9/7 NEWPORT NEWS, VA- UU FELLOWSHIP OF THE PENINSULA
Sat 9/8 APPOMATTOX, VA- PRIVATE EVENT (RSVP TO INFO@MELISSACOXMUSIC.NET)
SUN 9/9 BLACKSTONE, VA- ARTS & CRAFTS FESTIVAL
SUN 9/9 ALEXANDRIA, VA- MT VERNON UNITARIAN CHURCH**

GET A FREE MP3: www.MelissaCoxMusic.net
Watch Melissa's hilarious video "To Carrie Fisher, with love": http://www.youtube.com/mythicamusic

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Mock Suns Cabin Essence





Give your ears a gander at this Mock Suns cover of The Beach Boys' Cabin Essence, and read Cover Me's review here. If there's any group that could put a modern creative twist on this song it's these guys. Check out the bands latest album, Here Nor There, for more Good Vibrations (get it?).  



Links:
Cover Me review
http://www.mocksuns.com
http://mocksuns.bandcamp.com
http://open.spotify.com/album/6rhbpe9Dv62aINiJLO65Ov
http://itunes.apple.com/us/artist/mock-suns/id510412754
http://soundcloud.com/mock-suns/sets/here-nor-the
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007K7JEOO/ref=dm_sp_alb



Alexis Canary
Alexis@wearemonsterent.com
www.WeAreMonsterEnt.com

Thursday, August 9, 2012

RADIATE: Philly Raw Artists


If you didn’t make it out to the Philly Raw Artists' show last week you missed some cats in stunna shades, 99 bananas, and a bunch of great performances! Alright not actual cats walking down the runway rockin' their sunglasses at night..that would have been awesome, i love cats. But one of the artists’ exhibit (Claudia K) was portraits of her cats and her parents cats, as well as other animal finds on instagram, all glammed out and looking pretty fly for the animal kingdom. The show was all about celebrating local artists with raw talent in so many different mediums—painting, photography, fashion, and of course, music. Other artists’ included an exhibit of 99 bananas made into anything from candy to the presidential seal (Sean Brown), a photographer's successful attempt to bring life to decaying buildings—the Eastern State Penitentary photos were eerily beautiful (Daniel J. Decker), and an awesome display of hand-made bad ass jewelry from Bullet Babe.





The real energy of the night came from the fashion/music performance combos. They would have the bands perform with fashion shows in between, clothes and music..what's better than that?

All the designers served up their urban, trendy, and fierce styles. The unique styles served up shirts with powerful messages about peace, fierce accessories, and sophisticated designs. Then, my favorite part, the music. The sounds of all the bands were totally different. The first band, Market East, definitely caught my eye with their simple set up and easy indie sound. They're definitely worth checking out. Then we got a little bit of hard rock, some glam, and an interesting fusion of what I can only describe as Prince mixed with Childish. But, my favorite set of the night came from our friends Case Closed.



They definitely had the most energetic crowd response of the night and they put on a sweet performance. They performed some of their new and old songs at the show and left everyone wanting a little more. Seriously though, go check out their new Basements EP it's really good stuff. Everyone here at Monster has that on repeat, go get it! And next time there's a RAW setup in Philly go check it out! You'll get a night full of creativity and great people.

Check out some more pics:
https://www.facebook.com/PhillyRAWartitsts

Grab Case Closed's EP:
http://caseclosed.bandcamp.com/


Lauren Resnick
Monster Entertainment LLC
lauren@wearemonsterent.com
www.wearemonsterent.com

Friday, July 20, 2012

W T F

A gas mask-wearing gunman opened fire early Friday at a suburban Denver movie theater in Aurora, Colo. screening Batman; At least 12 dead, dozens more wounded... wtf?

Friday, July 6, 2012

"Welcome to the Show" Album Review



I hope you all have had the time to check out Black Wing Halo since last week’s interview! If not, I thought I’d bring you a review of their new album “Welcome to the Show” that we talked about. I’m not going to lie, I don’t normally seek out this style of music so this post definitely opened my realm of music appreciation. The album is certainly unlike anything I’ve ever heard. They weren’t lying when they said that they “threw a bunch of stuff into the Vitamix.” Every song’s sound is so distinct from the next, leaving no style untouched.

The show only lasts 8 songs but it’s definitely packed full with entertainment from the different genres they play with throughout the album. The title track introduces you with harsh distorted rhythms that have sort of a southern rock feel in them paired with a more relaxed melodic chorus line. Then when you listen to “Above my Head” you get their unique hard rock style mixed with some electronic and experimental somewhat haunting touches. You can tell that they really utilized the time they gave this album to mature. From not rushing the writing and production process of the album they got to take their expansive musical styles to a whole different level.

The different song styles are disconnected in a good way in my opinion. The distinct differences make up an album that does a great job at showcasing their self-made hybrid genre. Like I said, it’s not my usual pick for music to check out but I’m definitely appreciative to having been exposed to such a unique style of music. It’s definitely an album worth checking out if you’re interested in hearing something raw and really unique. If you like pure punk, hard rock, southern blues, or experimental electro, you’re guaranteed to find something entertaining in all the elements they throw at you. Check it out and let us know what you think!

Listen or Download:
http://blackwinghalo.bandcamp.com/


Lauren Resnick
Monster Entertainment LLC
lauren@wearemonsterent.com
www.wearemonsterent.com

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Edelweiss Tour & Interview


If you’re looking to hear one of the youngest bands around with a killer indie rock sound, check out this Pennsylvania quintet. Edelweiss independently released their new EP, the Pre-Columbians, last fall, and have some fresh new tracks on the way. Give this band a listen and you’ll see why they’re quickly gaining attention.

Check out our recent interview, and don’t miss them on tour this summer!


Tell us about your upcoming tour, starting on July 5?

Niko: Well it's going to be a basic East Coast tour. We’ll be hitting up New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and then we'll be heading out to Chicago as well for two days.  Overall it's about 10 days or so.

Is this your first time hittin’ the road?

Niko: Yeah, this is the first time any of us have done anything like this so it'll be a good first experience and something to have under our belts.
Donald: Hopefully it'll show others that we're ready for more

Definitely. You’ve gotten some pretty awesome attention lately with Absolute Punk streaming your newest demo, and your 15 wins on Gashouse Radio- What can you most attribute all this success to?

Niko: I think the majority of the success can be contributed to our fans and family. If it weren't for all of the support we would not be where we are today even remotely

So you’re playing July 7 at the Fire with Case Closed. Have you performed at that venue before?

Donald: Well we've only played in Philly one other time and that was at The Fire. It’s a cool place just because it's such an intimate setting and it allows for some great energy.

Is there a certain disadvantage or challenge in being a younger band, age-wise? Or do you think it’s an advantage?

Donald: It's a problem not being able to play certain venues. At the same time it's sort of good problem to have because it gives us the opportunity to experiment and really hone our sound.

You guys have a pretty unique name, can you give us some insight on it?

Donald:  We came up with the name randomly on a car ride. There was no real rhyme or reason behind it other than it had a nice ring to it. We originally spelled it "Eidleweis" for some reason, but we eventually went to the legit German spelling.

Niko: We were once called "anal-vice" right before we went on stage. It has its drawbacks

Haha I can imagine. Have you thought about where you'd like to see yourselves in a few years?

Donald:  We all have the same desire to do what we love and make a comfortable living out of it. I think every musician wants that, but we are very sincere about our music, especially as of recently. Personally, I would never trade average, half-ass music for millions of dollars. I just want to make music I love and make a living out of it.

Niko: I also saw Office Space the other night for the first time, and it really invigorated that philosophy.

Definitely an inspiring movie! Is there anything else you want to mention?

Niko: I’d say the only other thing is just about the new music we're releasing soon. It has taken a while to create these new tracks but like it was said before, we put a lot of time and scrutiny into our work. The new songs really excite us and we hope that everybody who liked the first 5 songs will like these next few.

When can your fans expect the new music?

Donald: One of the songs is currently playing on absolutepunk.net, and the others will be released over the next few weeks.


Links:


Alexis Canary
alexiscanary@wearemonsterent.com