JUNE 2011 SONICBIDS “ARTISTS 2 WATCH”

June 8, 2011
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Welcome to another amazing month of music from the incredible musicians that make up the Sonicbids.com community. We have chose a select group of amazing musicians that will be speaking directly to the Skope readers. As always we encourage readers to dig deeper and check out their EPK’s.

BLOW FLYY
www.sonicbids.com/BLOWFLYY

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Blow Flyy: Means a lot to me to be a part of A2W as Canadian artist on SKOPE,Skope has bean supporting my music from the first time i submitted through sonicbids one of my underground tracks between 2009 & 2010.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
Blow Flyy: At the moment i’m promoting my album called> ITS LIKE I GOT A SET OF WINGS> & my music in tottal.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
Blow Flyy: “NO,”it does not bother me when people download my music free,if that is away to get BLOW FLYY”S name out there and known world wide and if it gains me many more new fans i’m all for it.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
Blow Flyy: what drives me everyday to play and record music is the love of music, performing live and being able to put my thoughts and stories into music also being able to bring enjoyment to people with my music live and recorded.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
Blow Flyy: I don’t think the American idol & the voice are legitimate do to the fact the performers do not do their own materiel, that they write & record themselves, I   wouldn’t want to subject myself to do other peoples materiel on those shows.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
Blow Flyy: I’m currently waiting on word back about a selection for a tour in CHINA in september 2011.#7. i’m online at www.facebook.com/blowflyy,www.supernova.com/blowflyy, www.last.fm/music/blowflyy,www.musiclunge.com/members/profiles/1867

Kala Farnham
www.sonicbids.com/KalaFarnham

The Literates
www.sonicbids.com/TheLiterates

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
VYZ- It’s a good feeling because it shows that all the hard work is paying off. Out of everything we’ve accomplished, through tours, recording etc. to be acknowledged is a great feeling..

A.N.T.I. – It means that everything coming out of what this group produces is worth watching or listening to.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
VYZ- Well, we recently released our second full length album. The albums name is “Blow Your Brains Out”. available now digitally on itunes or you can purchase the actual cd at cdbaby.com/literates1. The title came from one of the songs on the album. We worked super hard on this one and are getting rave reviews from people that we gave a sneak preview to prior to the release. So we are definitely excited! As for shows, we always have opportunities for shows popping up. The best way to find out where and when we will be in your area would be our website (theliterates.com) or our facebook (facebook.com/literates). Check us out from time to time on any pone of those. Also, by the time you read this our merch site will be up and ready fro our fans to get our gear. Yes…really cool.
 
A.N.T.I. – The new Literates album titled “Blow Your Brains Out”. This Album is full of uppers, downers, laughers and screamers and shit that makes girls panties wet….. im just saying. if you like good music and hot sweaty nights with a 18 year old porn actress then youll love this album i guarantee it.    

DJ J-Rez: I Would say ”Blow Your Brains Out” our new album out right now and setting up some Promotional Tours and Literates Product to hit the streets.
 
Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
VYZ- At first I didn’t like it. I never downloaded peoples music for free but after I realized that a majority of our fans would have never even heard about us if it wasn’t for file sharing. I feel that our fans should download for free but true fans know if they don’t support in some way, we can’t afford to do this. sooo… to the fans, if you steal our music…coool…now go to our site or show and get a shirt or a hoodie…trust us we Love getting shit for free… but theres other ways to support than just our music… example: I’ve been handed an eighth of some proper og kush before…buy us some shots or some beers lol….be creative!
 
A.N.T.I. – It doesnt bother me, I steal music too. just as long as the fans keep multiplying and hitting the shows and wanting more of us is all I give a shit about. the industry is the way it is and thats that! you cant give people a taste of something and expect them to stop from trying to get another taste.

DJ J-Rez: Na, Not Really I Mean its Dope when Fans support and cop the album or buy a shirt But We make this music for the fans so if downloading our music is the only way they can get it then thats what it is.
 
Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
VYZ- It’s a few things actually. Number one is always the fans. Every time I hear someone say they’ve seen our show or love a certain song or recite a lyric back to me, its a feeling like no other, the biggest reward hands down. Second…the release I get when I write lyrics… when I come up with a hook that just works or a lyric that I’ve never heard before (metaphor or simile etc.) I love music. We all know no one is going platinum anymore. It’s become an independent industry so people that are doing music now, do it because they truly love music. The true motivator has been brought back…”love”. So the love I have for it is my motivator.
 
A.N.T.I. – The voices in my head from the people that use to say I wont amount to shit. the goal driven mother fucker inside my heart that tells me to never fail!! and the simple fact that I love music and making it for my fans to enjoy.  
 
DJ J-Rez: I guess its Starbucks Coffee and the Greenest Cush I have.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
VYZ- Love the voice…it’s all entertainment I guess…American Idol I feel is sometimes not cool for capitalizing on people that may not have much talent… then again it really puts it in perspective how many people want the win but don’t want to do the work to get there. I knew a few people that went on there and their situation was this, they knew how to sing but lacked the DIY (Do It Yourself) attitude to do research and put themselves out there. So it’s like they put all their hopes and dreams into this tv show that told them they didn’t have the talent to move forward. Well, from what I heard I strongly disagreed. They all had plenty of talent! The things that most of these contestants don’t realize is that the
days of doing a showcase or sitting on the corner and waiting for someone to hear you and say you are the next prodigy are over. The Voice and American Idol send the message that this is still the case. As I said, it’s all entertainment so when I do catch those shows, I watch it for that only. You can’t tell me when that one girl/guy walks up and has no image/look whatsoever and sings like Mariah Carey, that thats not entertaining….we all want to see them win! On the other end, watching the people that can’t sing a lick and believe they can….pretty damn hilarious.
 
A.N.T.I. – I dont watch that shit so i really cant answer this question. but im gonna have to go with the letter C.
 
DJ J-Rez: Yeah,, Why Not? I think we would kill on that show. We would light up a joint break the turntables on stage and get banned for life.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
VYZ- As I mentioned, catch us on Facebook.com/literates or our website theliterates.com. Pick up our new album or our last “Dont Sleep”…you wont be disappointed! As for us we are just going to keep reaching for the stars..keep making music and living the dream!
 
A.N.T.I. – Pushing this album to the fullest, new videos, more merchandise for our fans and bigger shows! possibly some collabs and things i dont want to give away. oh yeah and more music! till I die or kill myself from the overdose of dope shit we make.
 
DJ J-Rez: More Music, Making Beats, Promoting this Album, Touring, Videos and Mixtapes.

Oy Vey
www.sonicbids.com/OyVey

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Kevin: Being an A2W artist is really exciting for us. This project started out just two guys trying to make weird pop music in their apartments. The way that we’ve found an audience and are now getting shoutout from Skope is a really exciting new things for us.

Bryce: It’s surreal and thrilling for sure. We’re old buddies from high school who thought it would be fun to start a new project together. Our only goal was to test out a new sound and make something fun. Being in A2W is beautiful.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
K: We are currently promoting our debut album “Botanical Curiosity”, which we recorded completely at home using basic audio software on our laptops. We’ve made big strides on college radio and cracked CMJ’s Top 200 in the past month.?

B: There’s a video for our song “White Lies” on youtube, and one for “Idiot” in the works.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
K: Not a bit. We both grew up in the Age of Napster, and spent most of our adolescence grabbing as much music as our bandwidths would allow. So we’re in no position to cast aspersions now that the shoe is on the other foot.

And we also dig the fact that much of the time, people that illegally download music are the people that love music the most. They pirate it so that they can afford to check it out. We figure if they love it enough they’ll buy the vinyl. (Now that said, we aren’t available on vinyl yet, but we hope to be soon. In the meantime we hope they buy the CD.)

B: It’s an honor and a privilege to be illegally downloaded. What better way is there to get exposure and spread your music? It seems most people just go to youtube or grooveshark to hear music anyway. I see being pirated as a step up from that, in that at least they have the full album. Like Kevin, I typically buy a physical copy of something when I love it anyway.  

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
K: For folks like us, pop music is an affliction. You can’t get away from it if you try, and both of us did try. Two or three years ago, both Bryce and I had basically walked away from music for a bit.

But you can’t really escape something like that. It gets in you when you’re a teenager and it never goes away. As for recording music, its the most satisfying thing in the world to actually hear your idea back, in real sound waves, just like on the records you love. And the technology to record these days is so accessible, its just too addictive to not be recording something all the time.

B: Home recording definitely changes the game. The meter isn’t running as it would in a studio, and you have unlimited time to try out new methods and see what happens. The biggest drive for me is when you have one basic idea for a track, and something totally different and weird comes out of it for the finished recording.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
K: We’ve both watched American Idol for popcorn entertainment value over the years. But its an aspect of the music world thats pretty distant from us. That’s the world of divas and big personality driven stardom. There’s a reason the biggest stars are always the hosts.

I don’t think either of us would get terribly far on those shows. Bryce took two guitar lessons and I was the worst piano student his teachers had ever had. We both dropped out of choir after 8th grade. I don’t think we’re particularly what they’re looking for. (The real question is how far a young Stephen Tyler would have gotten on his own show.)

B: I agree. I do like to watch them sometimes for passive entertainment. I really like the chairs on The Voice, and the way they turn around when somebody hits the button. That’s why I would watch that show. Isn’t it worse for somebody to just not even turn around then to say something nasty? It’s definitely cooler.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
K: We’re currently working on our second album, Recession Girls, which we hope is going to be a big step up for us in sound quality. We’re still recording most of it at home, but we’ve pulled in some favors from musician friends of ours, so we’ll have live drums, a horn section and some dobro this time. Should be fun.

Online we’re on all the standards, MySpace, Facebook, YouTube and our own OyVeyBand.com. You can check out our music video for “White Lies” at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6u_4b08Lxoc.

We’re also starting to work with Green Light Go Publicity, which we’re really excited about, and we’re lining up some live performances in the fall, with drummer Johnny Rabb, and guitarist Steve Stokes.

VOICE IN THE ATTIC
www.sonicbids.com/VoiceintheAttic

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
VOICE IN THE ATTIC: It means a lot to me. Browsing through all the options for features and reviews my sonicbids Electronic Press Kit gave me, I thought “Being featured on Skopemag would be great. Let’s give it a shot and apply for their A2W feature” — and got selected! There are many music mags but few serious publications. Skope is one of them. So I’m proud to be here!

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
VOICE IN THE ATTIC: ‘Shark Rider’, the new EP. It’s available from all major online mp3 stores and there’s a physical product coming soon as well, a limited digipak edition I’m currently working on with a graphic designer.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
VOICE IN THE ATTIC: Well, John Lennon once said: “Music is everybody’s possession. It’s only publishers who think that people own it.” Lennon’s right, of course, and I’m all for giving the fans freebies. But the problem is that you need money, obviously, to do what you do best. Unfortunately, the Lady Gagas of this world are sending out the wrong signals by giving away whole albums for (next to) nothing. Consumers get the impression that songs are fruits dropping from trees, which is not true. I’ve written (and recorded) more than 30 tracks in the last months, only the best of which are on the new album. And the production of Shark Rider, involving musicians, engineers and producers from two continents, cost thousands of dollars. That’s peanuts for corporate businesses, but independent artists must shoulder the costs themselves. If you get absolutely no compensation for what you do, if you cannot so to speak ‘harvest the fruits of your labour’, the question is how long can you keep it up if you want to make music professionally. On the other hand, I can fully understand that people do not want to pay for something that seems as ‘insubstantial’ as mp3s or that they say music’s a service not a product, see Lennon. It’s both, which is the predicament.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
VOICE IN THE ATTIC: I can only think of two motivations for doing that. One would be to write, record, produce songs targeted at the mass market because you want big time money. So what you do is, you analyze and imitate the sound, style etc. of a famous artist, sample bits of smash hits from the past, mash it all up and — voilà! — you’re into the epigone business. Two, by contrast, is my way and that of several artists I adore. Heather Nova sings on one of her songs, I think it’s called ‘Not Only Human’, “Life is something set to music / I can hear it when I’m sad / There’s a chord in every muscle / Every kiss you ever had”. That applies to me as well. You either express yourself in an artistic way because you sense that it brings you closer to the mysteries of the universe — or you don’t. So the short answer to your question is, it’s part of my personality structure.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
VOICE IN THE ATTIC: That’s a tough one. On the one hand I know people who have produced the first American Idol winner, and those guys are nice hard-working, serious musicians and producers, many of them Berklee grads. But this part of the industry is also a farce and a slap in the face of musicians writing their own material who are serious about communicating through music. And no, I would never ever go on one of those shows. Friends of mine suggested I ought to but no way. Hell, I was born in the 70s when music had the power to change societies! I believe it still has that power. Only, you must look — or listen — harder. It’s not self-explanatory anymore. There’s so much ‘ado about nothing’ these days and it functions like white noise blocking out the good work by serious artists who really care about their audience. Not all is dark, though: bands like the Foo Fighters prove that you can be hugely successful and maintain your credibility.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
VOICE IN THE ATTIC: You can listen to the full album on our facebook profile at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Voice-in-the-Attic/126788950669321

We’re also on iRadio LA (Indie 104), the world’s most popular independent radio station. Request our songs at   http://indie104.serveftp.com/playlistV.html.

A new official music video will be out soon plus we’re playing a couple of local gigs at the moment and I’m already writing the next songs — so stay tuned in! Best way to keep track is to subscribe to the newsletter on our home base at http://voiceintheattic.com/fr_uptheattic.cfm. Doing that will give you a free download plus lots of inside information.

Melissa Otero
www.sonicbids.com/MelissaOtero

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Melissa Otero: Wow! It means I’m finally doing something right with my music and people are really digging my sound. It’s taken many years of music development to finally be considered an “Artist to Watch”!

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
Melissa Otero: I am still working on my second album but right now I am promoting two songs. The first single is “Angels & Demons” which has been by far the most popular one with it’s epic dark, sexy sound and deep lyrics. The second is my Spanish single “Tu Corazón” which the Latin community has embraced. It’s a “feel good” song about loving oneself and knowing that by achieving that love, you can then love others and only positivity would surround you. The song is also in English (“It’s You”) but we aren’t promoting it as of yet.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
Melissa Otero: Not really. I understand the industry is constantly changing and I believe there will be a time when music will no longer be sold. Artists will be making their money touring years on end and selling merchandise, doing meet and greets, things like that.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
Melissa Otero: The therapy that comes with it. If I can make you feel good with my music, I’ve accomplished a part of my goal. I believe every musician should be emotionally attached to their music and most of my songs have been inspired by things that have either happened to me or I’ve seen happen with some of my closest friends and family not to mention it’s SO MUCH FUN!

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
Melissa Otero: Ha! I actually auditioned FIVE times for American Idol and then got bored of it. American Idol is a hard competition to even past the first round. I saw thousands of talented singers not pass the first round and well, it’s all luck in that show. Same goes for The Voice but I find that The Voice has a much better concept. To be mentored by one of your idols would be a DREAM! Celine, are you gonna be on The Voice anytime soon? ;)

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
Melissa Otero: I’m gearing up to go back to New York City to perform at the 116th Street Festival on July 29th and the Carnaval de Loiza Aldea on August 7th. In between that I have a radio promotion tour in the area and after that I go to Chicago to perform at Six Flags on Labor Day. To keep updated with all my gigs and such, you can find me at www.melissaotero.com and on www.facebook.com/melissaoteromusic

Goodnight Argent
www.sonicbids.com/GoodnightArgent

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Goodnight Argent: Being a long time reader of Skope magazine myself, it’s a huge compliment to be considered one of the Artists to Watch. We’re stoked to share this with our fans.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
Goodnight Argent: As of right now, we are promoting our Ignorance is Paradise EP. It’s our first release as a band, and we’ve been blown away by the response we’ve received. It’s available on all the major music downloading stores.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
Goodnight Argent: Yes and no. It bothers me because I know how much time and effort we put in to make the music for the fans, but I’ve noticed that typically the people that illegally download music, wouldn’t have bought it in the first place. At least now, they’re listening, and we have the possibility of having that person come out and support us at our shows.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
Goodnight Argent: That moment when someone who’s been touched or affected by your music, comes up to you and tells you how grateful they are. Plus, it’s all we want to do, all day, everyday, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
Goodnight Argent: I feel they’re completely legitimate, because it’s not always the absolute best who wins. It’s the person who connects the most with the audience. At the end of the day, that’s what people want out of music, they want to feel a deep personal connection.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
Goodnight Argent: We’re currently working on our full length record. We’ve also received some great placement with TV shows on MTV and Showtime.
Once our new record is complete we’re going to be hitting the college music circuit to promote it. You can find us online at www.GoodnightArgent.com, from there you can follow links to our Facebook page and other social networking sites.  

Olga
www.sonicbids.com/Olga

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Olga: I am honored to be chosen for one! Thank you. Those that have known me a long time know that I have been working on my craft for a very long time. There is no overnight success. The life of an artist can be incredibly challenging at times, shake you down to the core and test your virtues like nothing else. There have been many days I wanted to give up and many days where I actually tried to be something other than who I am. I failed at that, so that’s when I knew for sure that this was the only way for me to be, challenges and all. On the flip side. the rewards are infinite. At the end of the day the greatest joy I have ever felt is when I finish a song, especially when it is one of those cosmic moments and hits me all at once. Divine inspiration.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
Olga: I have a new album out June 21st as a digital only release this time through Redeye Distribution. The album will be available through all digital channels including itunes, amazon et. al. The album is called “Whatever You Want” and was written and recorded with longtime friend Cody Dickinson (North Mississippi Allstars). We play all the instruments. The record was produced, engineered and mixed by Emmy winning producer Winn McElroy at his studio, Black Wings Studio in Water Valley MS.

To coincide with the album release there will be a music video (in post production) for one of the songs “Just Take Your Time” and likely another video to follow later this summer. The videos will also be on itunes and over the internet. Plus two songs on the album will be the theme songs for a new indie web series called “Carla’s Quest” to be filmed in New Orleans this summer. I will be acting as well as performing in the web series.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
Olga: No. It certainly helps me when they pay as the money goes to me directly, however I am also glad that they like it enough to play and hopefully share with their friends. Music is a gift from God.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
Olga: Not everyday is a music day. I wear many hats which is a good and bad thing, as it certainly keeps me busy but I don’t get to sit around and be an artist all day. I also am an actress, do my own promotion, hustle a living doing odds and ends. Sometimes I am just plain tired. The music will always be there, so when I am relaxed and free then it flows out of me. I hope and plan on doing some recording late this summer…

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
Olga: I don’t watch those shows nor do I watch much t.v. From what I do know about A.I., only a couple of the Idols are actually making any money after the fact. Most have been dumped by their labels and we don’t hear much form them anymore. Not to begrudge them at all, as they certainly also have their struggles. No, I would not go on the show as I’m not really one for competitions.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
Olga: I have the new web series “Carla’s Quest” coming up along with a few movies in the works, both indie and feature. The new album will be out June 21st and I plan on doing select shows to promote that. The first music video will be out with more to follow. Find me here:

www.laolga.com
www.twitter.com/olgabluesbabe
www.facebook.com/olgabluesbabe
www.laolga.tumblr.com
www.imdb.me/Olga

Teenage Rehab
www.sonicbids.com/TEENAGEREHAB

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Teenage Rehab: It feels good to be selected as an “Artist To Watch”. We appreciate it. Being a punk rock band alot of places skip over us and don’t give us the time of day but they’re missing the point. We love playing music and we’ve had a great time touring and releasing records all these years. There is a whole world of people who really identify with the type of aggressive music that Teenage Rehab does.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?  
Teenage Rehab:   At this point we’re promoting our last EP “Abuse Your Solution” from a St. Louis label named I Hate Punk Rock. We’ve been doing alot of shows these past couple years and this year we decided to take some time away from the road to focus 100% on a new album. We’ve got about 17 or 18 tunes for the next full length. We’re messing around with some reggae type songs and a couple different drum beats here and there as well as our raw straight forward punk rock approach. No pretty boy bullshit.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
Teenage Rehab: Absolutely not. Fans downloading our music shows support. When we travel to a city we’ve never toured and people show up to the shows knowing the words to the songs and playing air guitar with Danny its fuckin’ great. I think YouTube and internet downloading has really helped our attendance at shows. We want people to hear our music and usually when people download something and then come to a show they buy a shirt or let us sleep on their floors.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
Teenage Rehab: Thats a great question that I’m sure you’ll get alot of different answers to. For us we’re always writing about whats happening in our lives and what we see around us. The music is what gets us up everyday and the music is what keeps us going. We look forward to writing new songs and always pushing ourselves to write more and better. Its a weird thing because we’ll finish playing our set, jump in the van and immediately start listening to music as loud as we can. When I get home from rehearsal I’ll grab my guitar and play for hours. Its something that doesn’t ever stop.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
Teenage Rehab:   We’re a punk rock band and I don’t think those shows are geared towards bands and even if they were most everything I’ve seen or heard from them has been a joke to me. It sure doesn’t feel legitimate. I’m positive their are some really talented people who go on those shows looking to skip the “paying your dues” part of their music career. I like raw stuff and that whole deal just feels fabricated and shitty to me.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
Teenage Rehab: We’re gonna be releasing some new music videos in the next couple months and we are full blown working on our new record at Loud & Clear Studios here in Paducah, Ky with our great friend Shelby Preklas. We’re looking to release some records in Italy and Japan and make a trek overseas soon. There is so much going on but to get to it we’ll have to finish our record! We have a Teenage Rehab youtube channel that you can view here http://www.youtube.com/user/dewlookypolox?feature=mhee

King Teddy
www.sonicbids.com/KingTeddy2

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
King Teddy: Artist to Watch — has a nice ring to it!   It’s very exciting to appear in this feature with such a wide variety of styles, and after listening to a few of our fellow A2W artists, it’s clear we’re in good company.   We appreciate it!

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
King Teddy: We’re currently promoting our second CD, “Stirred and Shaken.” It’s a collection of 15 songs, 14 of which are King Teddy originals.   A couple of them have been honored by the Billboard Songwriting Contest, and thanks to SonicBids, if you’re flying on U.S. Airways during July and August of 2011, you can hear one of the tracks from the CD on the in-flight radio programming.   The album received two WAMMIE awards from WAMA (Washington Area Music Association) for 2010 Debut Recording and 2010 Swing/Big Band Recording.

The CD features a number of top-notch Washington-area and national musicians and was mastered by Bill Wolf.   We dare you not to tap your toes.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
King Teddy: Eh, it’s hard to feel too bad over something you don’t know about.   Generally, though, I guess we’d rather folks pay for downloads of music — our modest hope is to recoup recording expenses and maybe make a few bucks more, something to get us going on our next recording session.   Most musicians we know are working hard at creating and promoting their music, and aren’t necessarily getting rich from it.   We think it’s like any other creative endeavor — if you want people to be able to create stuff that you enjoy, don’t make it harder for them to do it – just pay the $.99.     I try to do the same…

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
King Teddy: For people that love playing and recording music, it isn’t really a choice — it’s a compulsion, something we couldn’t turn our backs on any more than we can turn our backs on food.   Of course, there are occasional lapses and roadblocks — life is the art of balance, and sometimes other things do and should take priority.   But I never worry about music “going away.”   It’s always there when I can get back to it, and I always get back to it.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
King Teddy: Sure they’re legitimate.   But I think shows like American Idol and The Voice are for people who want to become famous.   In fact, I suspect a few of them would take fame over music.   I’m not in the market for fame.   I’m more interested in finding a good song inside me and getting it onto a recording – I think there’s magic in that, and I feel fortunate when it happens.   And I wouldn’t mind selling music (I think most of King Teddy’s opportunities are in advertising or soundtrack applications) — the “rich” part of “rich and famous” would be fine with me.  

Anyway, I think those contests are perfectly legitimate, as legitimate as any other talent contest is.   Ultimately, no matter whether they win or not, they’ll all have to prove themselves and their sustainability, so it’s just a really big launching pad.   Nothing wrong with that.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
King Teddy: We’re trying, as ever, to expand our fan base with local shows, swing dances and summer concerts including the Bluemont Concert Series in Fredericksburg, VA and the Month of Sundays Concert Series in Westminster, MD.   We’re also talking about heading into the studio to record three or four more songs, including something for an upcoming season of note.   Check us out at http://kingteddy.com.

Sébastien Parentin
www.sonicbids.com/SebastienParentin

Skope: What does it mean to be an A2W artist?
Sébastien Parentin: Firstly, it’s obviously a great honor to be considered as an “amazing musician” by skope magazine! It’s always very cheering and stimulating to know that your hard work is appreciated, especially from people who know what they’re talking about. I also listened to the other June 2011 artists’ music and I must say I’m proud to be one of them. I think it is also a great opportunity to get more exposure, and maybe give a boost to my emerging career.

Skope: What are you currently promoting the most via an album, tour, single etc?
Sébastien Parentin: I have not yet found a good way to promote my songs efficiently… For the time being, I still focus on songwriting. I currently have lots of musical ideas that come in mind and I need to record them.

Skope: Does it bother you when fans download your music without paying?
Sébastien Parentin: No, I think an unsigned emerging songwriter like me may rely on free downloads to get more fans. Streaming and sharing songs on Facebook, MySpace, or YouTube is of course a cool and easy way to be recognized as an artist and gain some fans quickly. But, audience here is limited to people that connect to these platforms. However, there is nothing more immediate and powerful for exposure when people download your song to their mp3 player and freely share it with their friends at school, work, party, anywhere. I think an artist should accept to let his precious work for free until having a foothold in music industry. After that, the signed artist can plan to find a good promotion medium to sell singles, albums, go on tour, etc. Because, the artist goal is finally to be paid for what he does. Working hard for free is obviously frustrating in the long run.

Skope: What drives you everyday to play & record music?
Sébastien Parentin: Unfortunately, my spare time is still too rare to seriously devote myself to my musical project every day. I actually work full time as an engineer in a software company to earn a living, and pay my music hardware! I’m a passionate but amateur songwriter… I’d dream to be spotted by a serious talented producer and make my passion a daily reality, but in the meanwhile I devote most of my lonesome spare time nights to songwriting, playing on my piano, recording on my laptop. I was never really able to “control” my creativity, and to know why some nights I feel inspired, and why the rest of the time nothing happens. However, I must recognize that human relationships (whether they be fulfilling or unhappy) affect me a lot, and often when I feel the need, songwriting is definitively an outlet to free my mind.

Skope: Do you feel shows like American Idol and The Voice are legitimate and would you ever go on the shows?
Sébastien Parentin: I don’t know “The Voice”; this TV show has not been exported in France yet. The French version of “American Idol” (the only one I know) has a certain legitimacy I think, but it’s not my cup of tea. This show is exclusively focused on voice performers, whether they have songwriting skills or not… I dislike the idea of being judged only on my voice for the interpretation of a song that is not mine. Moreover, I also think that “American Idol” entertains, in a quite unhealthy way, celebrity illusions of participants (even winners) who often quickly fall from grace. Music industry in France relies too much on that kind of TV shows to make money easily and quickly, having a very short-term career vision for the singer to produce. So… No, I would not go to one of these shows.

Skope: What is coming up for you & where you at online?
Sébastien Parentin: Finding a producer would be a good project plan for 2011! In the meanwhile, I will keep on recording and arranging the songs I have in mind (as usual) until having enough materials to make an album. But it is still far from being ready! I usually take a lot of time (several months) to write a song, because I am in charge of every part of the process, and also because I am an amateur who cannot devote all his time to his passion. I also try to get some little promotion through sonicbids by subscribing to songwriting contests or other exciting gigs (like yours!).

I’ve recently created a Facebook page. You can find me there:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sebastien-Parentin/167448216644263

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