Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Late 70's: Joy Division Creates Alternative Music

Joy Division is considered by many to have helped shape the beginnings of alternative music. (Of course, we here at agree.) Joy Division was definitely post-punk. Alternative music has various meanings and some disagree on its true meaning……but Joy Division added more melodies to the punk sound and moved away from overextended power-chord changes and incorporated slick guitar riffs and harmonies into their sound. The repetitive guitar riffs created by Bernard Sumner were accompanied by Peter Hooks’ high bass line playing style. Hooks plays the bass by hanging it low and using the higher notes to harmonize with the rest of the band. Hooks’ bass guitar is basically -a new instrument. He is an innovator. The drummer, Stephen Morris, is perhaps one of the most overlooked drummers to come out of the post punk era and has unusual speed and thick fill-ins. The lead singer, Ian Curtis was well known for his distinctive low voice and his ability to change emotion and pitch. Lyrically, Curtis fits the alternative mold by providing listeners with something poetic and new. Each band member brought something different to the table and is why Joy Division has influenced bands like U2 and continues to find new fans that have now become familiar with their earlier work. Joy Division is one of many pioneering groups that contributed to the “80’s sound” that is still prevalent in today’s music. Joy Division later became “New Order” and was responsible for taking the early beginnings of alternative music to greater levels in the 80's but………. that's another blog entirely. The college djs are asking for more alternative music. (Really.) Send your submission to Here is “Shadowplay” by Joy Division. Notice the space between notes in the guitar riffs.

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Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Promotions is Key=ibranding….Free Promotion vs. Paying for Promotion???

To have a successful album you need the media involved whether you just have a great life story or create controversy. This can sell albums and help out your career greatly. Think of publicity as free advertising. Any media that is available will work to get you more exposure and hopefully in turn get more shows and sell more records. Many artists would be surprised how much press they can obtain if they just ask. You must have a good press kit or at least photos, music, and a good biography to email to get press. If you do not have one of the three above then don’t try because they are all needed to get coverage with a respected publication. One thing every artist should do is find emails to create a mailing list of press. This can be done by simply going to the websites of the press pertaining to your genre and searching in their “contact us” page or by buying the magazine and checking the articles. Not all magazines give out emails, but many can be found on places like Myspace, Facebook, and other popular networking sites also. When contacting the press, remember that they receive a large number of emails a day so your story must have a catch to it and be interesting for it to print. Also, the theme must pertain to what the magazine is about. No media outlet wants to hear how you are the best artist etc……They want facts and stories that will be interesting to their viewers. To really take advantage of press……and if you have the extra funds, then the best way to go is to hire a public relations company or a publicist who has a history of working with artists in your genre, who has results and is able to show them. A good publicist can run you anywhere from $500 to $4000 a month, depending on what company you hire and what you need. Here at we would like to recommend Fabiola Fleuranvil of N.Y.L.A. Entertainment Group. Remember you do not need a publicist year round if you aren’t an artist with a large budget -but signing a publicist for a few months before and after the release of your next single, mixtape or album…..greatly increases the chances of making your next project more successful.

DJ Kid Relly


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