MuzicNotez Crew: How long have you been promoting indie music? What motivated you to start?
The Dutch Guy: I’ve always shared music that I liked, independent or mainstream. Back in the day when I was on the radio, if I found a certain track I really liked, I just played it on my show.
But it became harder and harder over the years, to a point that it even became a fight with the suits at the radio station to get a certain track airplay. Have to be honest tho, I still managed to squeeze in new tracks. Play it first, get yelled at later 🙂
Started looking more and more to Indie music during the 00’s and these days it’s all about Indie music. There are so many great artists/bands out there, who are having the hardest time to get the attention they deserve. There are more than enough outlets who are covering mainstream, so I’m trying to give the Independent artists the best promotion I can.
Don’t get me wrong, I still listen to mainstream music and I certainly respect the classics, but it’s Indie music I’m promoting, no matter what genre…
MuzicNotez Crew: You have over 20 years of experience in radio, what have you taken from that to help you as a music promoter now?
The Dutch Guy: I’ve been involved in commercial radio for so long, national and international, I like to think I have an ear for music. With that I mean, I think I know which tracks could easily be played on a radio station, IF the suits that run the stations wouldn’t be so afraid.
So if I think a track could easily get some radio airplay and I share it on my blog, I like to think most people will dig the tune too…
MuzicNotez Crew: With that on air experience, what tips can you give to emerging artists and bands looking to get air time?
The Dutch Guy: You know, I get asked that a lot! And sadly enough, it’s a pain in the ass to make that happen! It was a lot easier back in the day, when radio personalities were still allowed to throw in a track or two per show, even on major radio stations.
These days, I would suggest going after Internet radio stations or even podcasts. There are many out there and more & more people are listening to music online. Do a little research, they aren’t hard to find.
You could also try to find terrestrial radio stations that have a specialty show for new music in their programming. Those are harder to find tho! University radio stations are also a great way to get airplay, since they aren’t programmed as tight as a commercial radio station.
But no matter which outlet you’re trying to get your song on, make sure you send them HIGH QUALITY files! Too many artists/bands are still sending out low quality stuff. And I’m not talking production-wise, that’s a totally different story! What I mean is, if you have the masters of your own tracks, why send out a low 128 or 160 kbps MP3 files?
First of all, you aren’t doing your music any favors to begin with, but radio stations usually won’t play it either! They have a certain broadcast quality to keep in mind as overall sound and as soon as one of those low quality MP3s hit their mailbox, DELETE!
Make sure you send your music in 320 kbps MP3 minimal, but WAV would be best! Don’t worry about data size, in this day and age with high speed Internet, that’s no problem at all! And best of all, you can drop the track/single you wanna push once in your dropbox account or whatever sharing site you like, and send links out to the outlets, without cluttering their mailboxes with big files.
Last but not least, if your track/single contains explicit lyrics, make sure you send out the clean version! There are countries, like The Netherlands, where it’s allowed to air the so-called dirty words, but countries like the US, the UK, Canada, no chance! If you know that, why do you still send out the explicit version? You already know you won’t get played, right? Sure, on the Internet it’s less of a problem but trust me, a lot of Internet stations or podcasts still prefer the clean version over the explicit one…
MuzicNotez Crew: What are your favorite indie artists or bands right now? What are your favorite mainstream acts? Any genre you specially look for or tend to avoid? (classics or present)
The Dutch Guy: Now that’s a tuff one! Don’t think I can say I have a favorite artist or band. My biggest problem is, I love most genres! It can be a voice, a dope beat, a guitar riff or even a great sample, each track has its unique sound that attracts me. Does that make any sense at all? 🙂
There’s one genre I have a soft spot for tho, and that’s funk! If you wanna win me over as fast as you can, get me some funk. Mmm Mmm Mmm!
As for avoiding genres, there are two genres I really can’t listen to. And I’m sorry if I’m gonna offend anyone, but it’s classical music and that death metal/speed rock or whatever you wanna call it. You know, the kinda rock that’s so fast, there’s no melody in it and with a ‘singer’ belching into a mic. I’m sorry, I simply can’t listen to it. And therefore, I won’t share it either…
MuzicNotez Crew: Today’s music industry has drastically changed with the addition of the internet, in your opinion what do indie artists have to do to take advantage of that? What are the pro’s and con’s of the internet in today’s industry, in your opinion?
The Dutch Guy: With the Internet, it became much easier for indie artists to get themselves out there. You’ve got many great sites where you can promote yourself and your music. But at the same time it’s also a downside, ’cause there are so many artists out there, it can be hard for a music lover/fan to find you.
Back in the day, pre-internet, you were only dealing with fans directly at a gig. Nowadays you really need to deal with fans on a daily basis through social media. You need to connect with them because if you don’t, well, there are enough artists/bands out there that will! You gotta break through the clutter!
The only thing I would suggest to independent musicians, don’t look at how many followers you have, no matter what social media network or website you’re using. Numbers don’t mean sh*t! You can have 10,000 followers, but if only 1% is actually interacting with you, you’ve got nothing, sorry!
Don’t fall for those ‘get more followers fast’ scams you see everywhere. I rather have 1000 followers on Twitter who are really paying attention, interacting with me, who dig what I’m trying to do, and retweet my posts, than 10,000 followers who are doing absolutely nothing. Again, numbers don’t mean sh*t…
MuzicNotez Crew: How are you unique, and what do you do best to help independent musicians?
The Dutch Guy: How am I unique? I’m me! It’s as simple as that, what you see is what you get. And yeah, I’ve got that perfect face for radio 🙂 When it comes down to music, whether I was doing a radio show or with blogging nowadays, I am passionate about it! All for the love of music…
MuzicNotez Crew: What are your plans for the future to continue to promote indie music? Anything new coming up?
The Dutch Guy: Summer last year, I started thinking what I could do more to promote independent artists. I’ve been off the radio for 2 years now and I wanted to do something more than just blogging. I just miss being on-air!
So, what if I took my 20+ years of radio experience, my love for music and vlogging and mix those up a little? My new logo is the first clue and I hope to launch during spring, including a move to a brand spanking new website. So, to drop a real radio cliche: Stick and stay, don’t go away! ‘Cause I think I’ve got an awesome thing coming your way! Whether you are an Independent musician or a music lover…