My dance with music and marketing

It really shouldn’t be that tough promoting a band on Twitter, should it? I’m talking Rock’n’Roll here (or just plain Rock as it’s referenced now) and a quartet in the genre since 2009….But who’s only had a full album since May of 2016 and who’ve only had a Twitter account since June.

It’s a project, that’s for sure, but I’m helping the Pretty Voices as best I can. On their Twitter account at the moment, they currently have 17 followers.  That’s a wee bit better than the 14 they had as a lasting number until a few days ago. I’ve already added plenty of new accounts to its follows list (avenues to help promote the group) but it’s a project, that’s for sure. Thus is the life of a band – trying to gain exposure. It takes some experience with the tool and in marketing. Something my time in the Boltosphere has brought me.

By the way, the group has 378 “likes” on Facebook.  That’s only a fraction of people who have experienced them and liked them on the radio, on the Internet, and in reality. If you’ve heard them, if you’ve enjoyed them, see what they have to offer here on Facebook.

Warping of top indie music voting (again)

Once again, via Jango and Radio Airplay, artist Michael Wark came out on top of a weekly ranking. This following instrumental named “Nikola Tesla” came out on Week 40 as the top Rock song on the network:

Or would being the top avante gard a clue be more fitting? That song doesn’t fit Rock (aka Rock n’Roll), Alternative, Pop, Folk, Country, or many of the other main genres of Radio Airplay’s weekly top list.  It’s instrumental / artistry. It is not of the Rock genre though.

Worse yet: It was put on YouTube to the public in December 2011; a nearly five year old song is voted to a top 10 list for a week in a field of indie musicians who offer a wide variety of music from much more recent times…

Wark might have fans and friends giving him a bunch of weekly voter support, but it’s also warping the concept that Radio Airplay/Jango put together to have indie submissions ranked weekly. That and this not Rock.

By the way, the top song for the genre of Metal on Radio Airplay/Jango for Week 40 – Final Breath – is a lot more Rock worthy than “Nicola Tesla”. Here’s a link to it on Jango because there is no YouTube video at the moment. Check it out.


The story of two Internet Radio streaming services

Internet radio… I don’t even know if that’s truly the proper title to use for this. It’s audio streaming of music and perhaps there is advertising but it’s not like traditional radio. Certainly not when you take in the aspect that computers and choices (by the listener and the software programming) are in control of the broadcasting and what’s airing and such. Oh, that is still a truth in traditional radio airplay, but disc jockeys and local advertising isn’t as ardent a factor.  No, you’re the disc jockey ultimately and advertising is a different beast online. But I digress, this isn’t about ads.

I’ve been using Pandora casually for a few years. I know its power and influence… So it was a chance I took trying to help prop up the local garage rock/pop band that I’ve been helping out since summer of this year, the Pretty Voices.  As someone who has worked in the distant, distant past for search engine submissions when they were a slower process, I thought the challenge of Pandora was a throwback.  It was also intimidating.

Pandora has standards and a large audience.  They’re not going to just take random submissions / they’re going to have standards that need to be reached and exceeded, applying to both the music and the actual submission form process. My first effort to get the band on the services proved quality mattered. The submission song (Scenius Genius, a rocker with foul language) and submission form came up short in the eyes of Pandora. Disappointing? Sure, but not a total surprise.  It had taken a full week of review on their part and that could have been inspired by internal debate to go along with competition from other potential artists submitting new content to the network, but it still came up short.  Close, though. Much closer than I realized.

It took me a second submission only a few days later, using another song as an example (Crackle Pop) and an elaboration on the form regarding the band itself and details on the song example used in the submission to get the accepted status. Yes, Pandora accepted the Pretty Voices and that was three days after that second submission!  The album, Jangular, by the band went live on Pandora on October 4th and you can find it here. Quite the accomplishment for the group and a feat for the submitter!

This process seems a hell of a lot more complex-yet-involved than the one utilized by Jango and its formal audio administration area, Radio Airplay.

Simple enough, Radio Airplay lets musicians upload music to the network, but you have to have a paying membership; a monthly fee. While that comes off like an immediate downside the fact that it airs audio to international locations (Canada, Europe, the Russian Federation, Asia, etc) makes up for it. Limits on exposure do exist though; if you’re not paying the top level monthly fees, you only have so many credits per month to expose listeners to your music, and top ranked songs earn more credits from the network. This is another flaw of the system, but not such a big flaw as its weekly “top songs” list.

In concept, it’s a simple standard that’s known in the music industry: The song that was most well liked in major musical genres such as rock, metal, alternative, country, pop, dance, rhythm and blues (R&B), etc. All the songs get ranked by the listeners on Jango and it reflects music popularity… You can’t go wrong with having a top-ranked song list, can you?

In this case, yes…. Yes you can.

I’m not sure if it’s just the change of the music world or what, but I’m pretty sure there’s something going on when an instrumental, mid-tempo song is ranked top “Rock” song for a week, especially when it lacks guitar music.  Case in point: Week 39 on Radio Airplay had an instrumental named Martha’s Vinyard as the top ranked “Rock” song.

You cannot tell me that’s rock. And my venting here isn’t just over the fact this is a mislabeled genre but also the fact this guy routinely gets ranked tops for his instrumentals in rock or pop. That and the weekly top list isn’t top songs by genre as-so-much singular songs that are weekly best per genre. Here’s the top list for Week 39 (where Martha’s Vinyard was ranked top Rocker)..

Weekly with these top ranked songs, you’ll find genre defying music as the top ranked numbers from Jango/Radio Airplay. It gets ridiculous. Fan reaction to music is one thing, wrongly categorization is another, but mismanagement from the host company to the point it allows this to go on and on and on tops it all.

Additions for “Relaxing, EASY favorites”?

I have a musical playlist that is 9 hours long. It’s specifically songs that I can relax to and that I enjoy listening to, spanning over 50 years…

And yet, I can use more songs or suggestions to add to the playlist. While every song on this list I like in one way or another, hearing certain songs too often can diminish them or make me want something else. At the same time, there’s got to be more than a few songs I’m outright forgetting from bygone eras of pop music, and I know I’m clueless on more recent songs that are catchy and fit this. Continue reading “Additions for “Relaxing, EASY favorites”?”

A conflict of Pinterest

I’ve been on Pinterest the past few months, using it more to try to spread information / pop culture type items and such than to do what is common: Tout personal photos and wants. Maybe this is a sign how little I know about Pinterest or how I vary from the bulk of Pinterest users, but whatever…

One board I’ve set up is rather generic and yet rather necessary for broadening web exposure. It’s simply touting hockey blogs. That’s playing up the sport of hockey as well as playing up coverage coming from either the media or the fans themselves who drive blog coverage. It’s also a really, really tough feet to accomplish.

There are so many hockey blogs out there; that aspect I’m not trying to play down when I say it’s tough to accomplish what I’m trying. Massive amounts of coverage for the Canadian based teams and other franchises throughout the US (especially northeast market and elder clubs) are not surprising at all. What is surprising is the difficulty of trying to pin said-blogs to the Hockey Bloggers board with thanks to the inability to pin site logos from the individual blogs.

The pin attempts aren’t for specific posts on the sites, it’s linking generically to the sites… And for one coding reason or another I just can’t pin certain site logos (unable, I don’t mean that as by choice). I’m not doing the postings to just show off logos – I make sure to link to the sites and play up what they do in the Pinterest posts – but I’m also trying to play up the individual entity that is the site. What’s better to do when highlighting a web site in general than to show off their site logo?

So, I‘ve got to figure out a way to link to more logos. I’ve been trying to focus on a broader array of blogs than just SB Nation sites (…where the logo pinning is not an issue). At this rate though, I’ll either have to manually download and upload blog logos (which I have in one instance) or wave a white flag and give up on the entire concept.

Whatever the case, there are only 17 blogs listed at this point… And I can tell you quite easily that there is a hell of a lot more out there in hockey blogdom than 16.

Seeking blog contributors for Raw Charge


Raw Charge is looking for writers to add to the staff of their SB Nation blog covering the Tampa Bay Lightning.  How would I know? I run the damn place, that is how I would know.

I bring this up on my personal blog site that gets next-to-no web traffic (but a gargantuan number of bot driven spam comments) because it’s a chance to talk about the aspiration to add staff.  Well, it’s not just adding staff, per se. It’s about trying to find writing teammates to work with. This is a quest to find guys and girls who love the sport, and the team but also want to be part of something bigger.

Things have changed in the past calendar year (or a bit longer) on Raw Charge with people leaving the site, self-driven writers who didn’t want to fit a format (be it site use or grammar), and college influence / professional aspirations stopping others from writing in a casual format.

While the site has taken on some very capable writers the past few months, there is still missing elements and consistency in contributions.

I’m looking for a Tampa Bay based element for new contributors. I don’t mean relocated-for-college-but-originally-from-TB people… I mean folks who are here.

You can access the official post about looking-for-writers at this link.

Potential tropical development and a touch on hurricane history

I’m a weather guy, just a bit. I get a lot of entertainment / comfort out of reviewing Doppler radar in the Tampa Bay area and Florida. I keep myself informed regarding the tropical weather situation because it’s a looming issue at play annually.

I’m a little flabbergasted this afternoon though as I reviewed the latest update on the Bay News 9 tropical update page that Tropical Depression #6 for the Atlantic hurricane season is out there. Read that again, people, Tropical Depression Number six…. No, I’m not trying to play up the total as if it set some record and illustrates this-and-that of environmental development. I’m surprised and shocked because of how few tropical systems have been out there as this is only the sixth weather system with the potential to develop in the summer of 2016.

There is the negative shocker to be worried about here too: Last time I can remember a tropical season starting so late (meaning developing a depression into a storm or hurricane) was 1992 when Hurricane Andrew started the process of development on August 16 (via Wikipedia). It was only the third depression of the season and the first one that developed. And man, did that thing develop…

If you’re in South Florida or on the Atlantic coast of the US, make sure you follow this system and in general keep an eye on the tropics now. We’re at the height of the hurricane season and that brings the most threats as well as the most potential catastrophe.