Thursday, 12 July 2012

Why Bands Should Be Fans Of Fan Blogs

A few days ago Sean Adams from Drowned in Sound website asked a question on twitter. “Websites/blogs, what do you want? To give the music scene acupuncture with tiny flags or for fans to take notice of a few acts you love?”

We thought this was an interesting (and very valid) question and we’re taking a few moments to explain where we see ourselves and our relationship to bands.

Breaking More Waves is very much a ‘fan blog’ – we’re determined to post multiple times on certain artists we love. However there’s so much music we get a crush on and an ever flowing abundance of great new performers to discover, that inevitably the blog won’t just focus on a small selection of artists. If you have read Breaking More Waves for any period of time we hope that you’ve gathered a sense of the type of the music we enjoy and the artists we adore. We also hope that sometimes you take notice of those acts. 

In our ideal world we’ll introduce an artist under the title ‘New Waves’ or in one of our Saturday Surf features, then follow it up with a number of other posts as the artist releases more material, before somewhere down the road the masses agree with us, the artist becomes commercially and / or critically successful and our taste is vindicated as being ‘good’. It’s at this point that we’ll probably stop posting about the artist a lot, simply because our job is done and anything or everything we want to say about the artist can be accomplished quicker and with a wider audience by the professional media. But in our own small way, through our reasonably well read and networked fan-written blog we’ve helped give the artist some of their first exposure to a worldwide audience.

There’s something rather exciting thinking that through a blog like this, which is based in the UK,  an artist’s music may get heard in Australia, Finland, USA or Brazil. This is why it pays for bands to be fans of fan blogs – it’s called the world wide web for a reason and we have regular readers and subscribers in all those countries. Plus chances are if we love an artist we’ll post about them time and time again until someone takes notice. This is something that the acupuncture blogs Sean referred to are less likely to do, as they’ve got other tiny flags to put down. Fan blogs will keep flying the same flag as long as they possibly can.

A note of reality at this point though. It doesn’t always work like that. Sometimes we post about an artist once as a new wave, they release more material and it doesn’t click with us. Other times, because we’re time limited we just don’t get round to writing about the artist as we would like to – this can be because we can’t find the free time or the band’s next release slips under our radar. (Note to artists – part of your job, if you want us to keep writing about you is to help us by keeping us informed of new releases and providing the relevant links. It’s also important to develop a friendly relationship with us. We don’t ask a lot, but for the time we put in finding your music and writing about you for no pay, a thank you goes a long way.)

Which brings us to Noosa.

We introduced Noosa aka Sky Barbarick and Matt Buszko on the blog last Saturday. And now we’re writing about them again. There are two reasons for this. The first and most important is because we love their music. But secondly it’s because they’re doing what we believe is the right way to convert us into a fan - they’re doing more than just good music – they’re engaging with us.

Shortly after we posted about Noosa on the Saturday Surf the duo sent us a thank you on twitter. It was polite and made our work feel appreciated. Then a few days later, zapping into our in box was an email from the band. It wasn’t full of hyperbole or pretending that they were big fans of the blog, but just simply another thank you (using our first name rather than a generic ‘hey blogger’ showing that they’d taken time to look this up) and the information we required. That information was that Noosa have put out a new single, with some links to a Soundcloud stream, a link to download the track and artwork to use in any blog post if we chose to write about it. It was simple but perfect and followed all of the rules that we suggested in this piece we wrote for bands about how to get music on blogs. But most importantly the music was great too. It’s called Heartache.

Heartache is a hip-swinging synth sizzler, full of disco groove flavours that takes you away from the hum-drum and onto a neon flashing dance floor in a rocketship to the stars. If this song was a food it would undoubtedly be a big slice of cheddar, but that’s a good thing, because it’s tasty and good for your bones.

We’re joining Noosa’s fan club.

Noosa - Heartache

1 comment:

Graham said...

Spot on article with the blog mate. I don't think bands understand the power of blogs in getting their tracks out to the masses overseas and not just in their side of the pond. It's part of the new world way!!

Noosa understand that and that's why they'll do well.

Love your work!! Cheers. Your Music Radar