Interviewing indie music artists

February 14, 2010 at 3:36 am (Musings) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

I’m writing this to help me remember, but also as a guide for you to get some ideas on interviewing musicians.

1) Most indie musicians love writers b/c. it gives them more exposure, attention, contacts, etc. Knowing this will give you some confidence, be patient, positive, brief (don’t waste their time) – meaning, be direct and clear when you ask them for an interview.

2) You’re already at the show, you see the singer. Be proactive! You have to create your own breaks, stories…so go find them. Don’t waste a chance if your gut says go talk to THAT band.

3) At a show, you can approach in many ways, but always be respectful & handing over a nice looking business card, always looks good. State that you are writer, right off the bat, so they’ll probably get that you are there wanting to interview or get a quote for an article.

4) Nowadays, contacting a band through a website is actually a decent way to go. I have scored most of my interviews writing a direct e-mail to their official website, Myspace, Twitter, even Facebook. Social media does work for writers to connect with the artist….really!!

At first I would write comments & stuff on their site, and then the artists sometimes would comment back..huh? So, the more it happened, I thought, why not? E-mail directly and see if they want to talk, the worst they can do is say no or ignore your message. For example, if I get a response, I usually either try to meet when they next come to town, or I try to do a phone interview & set it up.

*The hardest thing about doing an interview is setting a suitable day & time. It can be frustrating if they have to re-schedule, etc., however, this comes back to the patience thing. If you want to interview an artist, it’s still awesome to have to interview, even if you have to wait a long time. But be persistent and patient. Remind yourself that musicians are busy, practicing, recording new stuff, so be prepared for example, if they say come to show  I’ll talk with you after the show, and the show ends at 2am…you stay till 2am happily & do that interview to your best.

Now, I’m not saying you shouldn’t go through their indie record label reps, & that’s fine. You will probably have to go that route if they’re a big “indie artist”.

O.K. this blog is getting horrendously long, I could tell you a lot more things, so I might in a continuation blog.

~Jason

Advertisements

Permalink Leave a Comment

Music Reviews – How I Write Them

May 13, 2009 at 4:26 pm (Music Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Name: Artist

Genre:

Major/indie/unsigned:

Album:

Released:

I will rate it “Overall” out of **** (including halves)

Musicality – the musicians ability to play cohesively (together/tight)

Singing – voice quality, confidence, best fit – with band, versatility, appealing to fans

Lyrics – depth and meaning; interesting and worthy of multiple listens

Flow/Rhythm – Is it crisp and clean, does it make people wanna hop, jump, nod their heads, step, waves their hands like they just don’t care (O.K. You get it!)

Freshness – Is this original, a new sound/style, or song, that gets me outta my seat!

Technicality/Recording – Quality of the recording

Visuals – Videos, advertisements, on Myspace, or elsewhere – does it help enhance or detract from your music/image

Top #2 Songs: I pick my fav’s

Just so everybody knows where I’m coming from, the rubric above is what I will use to review the music/musicians that will be seen here in this “Music Reviews” category in this blog. I will not be able to comment on every category for each artist because it would take too long, however, I will focus on the important ones. If you have any questions, please leave a comment, tweet, or talk to me on Myspace.

~ Jason Chu

@Chodidees

http://www.myspace.com/chodidee

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Permalink Leave a Comment