Thursday, November 29, 2012

Band 101: Releasing your music - CD/Digital? How Many Songs? Etc?

We received a lot of questions recently regarding releasing new music in this new age of the music industry. Such as: How many Songs? Do we need CD's or Digital? What should we do with the music to get it out there?

Below are based on my experiences and research, if you have other positive information to help your fellow artists please leave comments on this blog post!

The Music Industry obvious has been changing faster than the speed of light but also evolving into a DIY model for the artists. But there are some things every artist needs to do before they release their music. Hopefully I can provide some useful information.

I recommend any independent artist to release 5 song ep's rather than full length CD's. Each artist is trying to build new fans. Recording your 5 best songs is best direction. By recording 5 songs it keeps your fan engaged and their attention.
With doing EP's you can release them every 8 months or so to remain fresh. It also benefits your merch and CD sales by building a library of your music.

So your in the studio recording some smoking tracks for your EP release. its sounding great, awesome feedback from all in involved with the recording.

Artist/Band Rights:
The Artist/Band has to get all their rights in order before you release the EP.

1. The band needs to setup an artist agreement/partnership between themselves (if it isn't already) on who gets what percentage of the publishing, touring, merch, etc. Also who owns the band name and provisions if someone departs the band?
2. The Artist needs to register with ASCAP, BMI or SESAC for your publishing royalties.
3. The Artist needs to register with Sound Exchange for all of your internet royalties. SoundExchange is the non-profit performance rights organization that collects statutory royalties from satellite radio (such as SIRIUS XM), internet radio, cable TV music channels and similar platforms for streaming sound recordings

*** recommend talking to an Entertainment Lawyer and/or a Publishing Consultant

Okay were done recording lets get some CD's pressed up for our release show!
Hold on.... here are steps to do it right.

When you release your new 5 Song EP, you should set a release date and have it
correspond on the ITunes/Amazon for your digital download date. So how do I do that?

CDs/MP3 & Distribution:
1. I recommend right now using TUNECORE, its reasonable and best for selling your music online. They put your music on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify and many other stores. They collect and give you 100% of the money from your music sales along with detailed streaming and sales reports.
They will give you a date when you material will be available online. It takes 3-4 weeks to go live.
2. Once you know that date, setup a release show the week of it being available online.
3. Recently a lot of successful touring bands have been selling Download Cards, USB Drives, Vinyl and CDs for selling their music. Fans still like CDs, but Vinyl and download cards seem to the favorites.
4. CD's I wouldn't go out and get 1000 CD's right away, most of the time they wind up in the basement collecting dust. I would do 300CD's to start, along with download cards to offer to your fans. Vinyl is cool and seems to sell well to diehard fans - maybe offer a short run as a limited edition. Set a budget on what you can afford for merch, you always can buy more..
5. Make sure you make it easy for fans to buy your music/merch from your websites. Have all the links to amazon, itunes, spotify and etc.


Using Tools like Topspin, Nimbit, Bandzoogle, Moontoast, and many others allow you to build a complete online store inside your website or Facebook. You can sell digital & physical music, plus merch, tickets, and lots of other stuff, directly to fans without a middleman. You also keep the vast majority of the money you earn  

How do I get my new EP out to the World?
The age old question.... promotion and creating a buzz!!!

Here are some tips and ideas for you to try....

The more people you meet, the more events your attend, developing relationships etc.
See past Band 101 topic:

Internet Radio/Podcasts:
This is a great way to get your music heard around the world. The best way to get on internet radio/Podcast is to find the stations that fit your style of music and contact the DJ directly. Don't go sending them MP3's. Just send and intro letter introducing the band, and a link to your music and great Youtube if available. If they like your band they will want a CD mailed or mp3 emailed to them. Two great sites with a lot of options are and There is a lot of research that can be done to find international stations; you just need to put the work in.

Music Blogs/Review Sites
The main issue here is that which blogs would be interested in reviewing my music. There are a lot of music blogs out there and a hard nut to crack. The best is to use the same approach as above. One recommendation would be approach the smaller blogs first. They may have a few followers but it will help you get into the larger ones. Also make sure you have an interesting story to tell that would attract someone to review your music. In the past I would look to see who writes the reviews and find out what they like and send them the music w/ a Starbucks gift card, free shirt, free cool merch. item. I sent a coffee basket to a radio DJ before. The band was played for 4 weeks on her show. It's a poor man’s payola but it does work if the music backs it up.
The Hype Machine is a great website in all, here is a listing of music blogs:!/blogs/tags/alternative

College Radio:
Is college radio still relevant, I would say yes, but it has shrunk. The DJ's are still playing music they like. They key is to find the stations that play your style of music, again try an make a solid contact at the station to submit your music. Also the College DJ's also are Bloggers trying to get new music out to their followers. Most of the stations also stream their shows also.
here are links to get you started:

Commerical Radio/XM Sirius:
All independent artists are limited to specialty local programs, still a form of promoting your music. Commercial radio is still run by the labels. You can hire radio promoters, they are expensive, but don't always meet what artists expectations are. They get you on new music shows for a play with the false hope of regular airplay. If you are in the metal scene it's a little different but still an uphill battle.

Reviews in Papers/Magazines
Most of your major magazines are extremely hard to crack, even for known artists. The first avenue I would try to do is go to your local neighborhood papers and sell them the story on the band, music release and gameplan for getting the cd out there. When you get to the city level of papers it really is a long shot. There is only a small amount for them to write about with a worlds worth of music.
Here are some cool sites to try and get your music reviewed on:
*** see our side bar for great music blogs***

Good Article:

Creating videos with your new music in them is also a very good promotional tool. I know making a video can be expensive. If you have creative types it can be down fairly cheap with a flip camera or something similar. Think out of the box, be creative and gain some interest.

Soundcloud is the easiest to use free music upload service. It takes just a couple clicks to upload a song and once you do, you can embed your music everywhere from Facebook to your Tumblr account. You can allow people to download it, stream it, and if you choose you can even allow people to remix it. It's also a free way to connect with other musicians, follow artists you like, and create a small community around your songs. But the biggest appeal? You can allow people to comment anywhere in the song. This means you'll get personalized feedback on each section of your song. It's hard to get used to all the criticism, but it will help you improve in the long run.

Bandcamp/Let your fans decide what they pay:
Bandcamp is free to use for musicians and allows you to set your price for your album or let people pay whatever they want. Unlike Soundcloud, you also get better (and more) options for tagging your songs and tracks so people can find you based on your location, music type, or even mood. Better still, people can download your songs in a number of formats and qualities, including high-quality FLAC files. If you're releasing a whole album, you get a nice, minimal landing page where people can stream or download the songs. Bandcamp has every stat you can imagine, including sales, streaming time, and details on when people stop listening to a track. As a tracking tool, it's a good way to see how people listen to your music. As a selling tool, it's a great way to let potential fans stream a song or album before buying it.

Tracking Down new Fans:
Once your music is on the internet you still need to track down fans. This is the hardest part, but the best thing you can do is make it so your music is accessible in as many places as possible. Here's a few simple rules to follow after you've uploading your music:
Tag your songs properly:   The biggest way musicians shoot themselves in the foot is by not tagging their music properly. Sites like Soundcloud or Bandcamp let you pick your genre or location because it helps people find you. Use genre tags properly and honestly.  Include your location too, because if anyone ever wants to write about your music, the first thing they want to know is where you're from.
Spread it out to aggregation and radio services: People aren't always going to come searching for your music on their own. You need to make it accessible and easy to find. Once your music is online, submit links to discovery engines like exfm and so people can find your music by accident.
Some music Directory Services:

*** Serveral People May Not like the Next Way of getting your music out there but it is an option to get your music out there***

Torrent Sites/Rapidgator/Mediafile File Sharing:
If your band is interested in getting your name out there without any potential CD sales there is the torrent/file sharing way. Release your music and sharing it on torrent sites could garner downloads over the world. I know it's falling into the Pirarcy World. But knowadays more than 80% of the population of the world gets their music illegally. A great torrent listing site is Pirate Bay. If you put your torrent on here it will be listed as "New" post and watch it go viral. People will download to check it out. It's a long shot but worth a look if your getting desperate

Hopefully some of the ideas I brought will help you in releasing your new music to your fans both new and loyals. By no means is this set in stone methods, every artist is different and want different goals. So good luck, keep your music alive and spead the word.

Jim Thorpe / Legendary Dobbs-DVT Entertainment

Monday, November 26, 2012

My Enemy Complete brings back their Arena Performance at Dobbs Dec. 15th

My Enemy Complete first show in Philadelphia was at The Legendary Dobbs "Liberty Musicfest" in Aug 2012. MEC was a standout at the festival bringing their powerful and emotional live performance that put the feeling that you were watching them in a large stadium. Bilaal is every essence of what you want in a frontman. He engages the crowd with his presence and eaily makes you pay attention to his words with the backing of the sonic force the band projects from the stage. Treat yourself before the holioday and come to Dobbs on Dec. 15th to witness a band that will become your favorite new band.... Jim Thorpe - Legendary Dobbs
Dec. 15th Lineup: Spiral Out (A Tool Tribute), Tungsten, My enemy Complete, The Silent Signals and Maudeline Haze
My Enemy Complete is a DC based band inspired by dense electronics and emotional songwriting. MEC is built on sonic experimentation and a blend of electronic and organic instruments. Their songs focus on disconnecting from the old and reconnecting with the new in an attempt to carve out something unique or unknown.

What do musicians do when their bands meet their maker? They create something new with other musicians. So it is with My Enemy Complete, established by former 51 Peg musicians Brian Fasani and Carlo Pizarro as well as Bilaal Y (vocals/guitar/synth) of Chrysalis. On their six-song comprehensive debut EP, the US trio merges dark, complex arranging of Alternative and Progressive Rock with departures toward Tool or APC and random, razor-sharp slivers of industrial. It not only reads well, but it sounds good as well. The interaction between atmospheric fragile, at times melancholy tinged moments and massively powerful lava-flows in combination with stirring waves of melodies and Bilaals distinct vocals you will be caught from the second you experience it. You can also detect something new each time you listen, electronic details, which swirl around within epic strings. An intensive tryst between introversion and volcanic eruptions.
Coma Magazine - Review by Neska

“If you think of the sound of a band as a food recipe, take hearty doses of either Tool or A Perfect Circle and mix it with the electronic work and brooding lyrics of Pretty Hate Machine era Nine Inch Nails. Throw in a pinch of The Cure and Depeche Mode and you will find My Enemy Complete. This band blends electronic music with actual instrumentation extremely well. The layers provide an extremely intense feel that must create one hell of an atmosphere live if translated well.”

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Return of Shinobi Ninja on Saturday Dec. 8

Oh yeah!!!! Shinobi Ninja finally is coming back to The Legendary Dobbs on Saturday Dec. 8th. If you haven't seen or heard of them, come out to the show you will witness pure insanity with their funk-rock-hiphop onslaught of party vibes. The combination vocals of Duke and the all so sexy seductive Baby G would slay all the wantabee Ninjas out there. The band is force on stage, beyond high energy to say the least. They are one of the best bands I have seen who got it right with blending funk, rock and Hip Hop. It's gonna be a party on Dec. 8th with the Funk/Rock partners in crime w/ The Black Stars, Bam! and Boogieman Dela.....Below is more info, music clips and videos.... Jim Thorpe -The Legendary Dobbs

Shinobi Ninja is a Brooklyn-based party rock circus with an explosive live show. The band’s music mashes up the sounds of 311, The Beastie Boys, Sublime, and Rage Against the Machine. This year, SN has performed alongside Snoop Dogg and The Black Keys at the inaugural Catalpa NYC Music Festival, 311's Pow Wow Festival, The Warped Tour, Summerfest, SXSW, CMJ and more. The official video for their new single “Slow Mourning” became their second add to MTVU's regular rotation alongside "Rock Hood" which was featured in the soundtrack to the NBA 2K12 Video Game and on Q104.3FM in NYC. Their groundbreaking iPhone video game app and debut album are for sale in the iTunes Store, and their new mixtape is available for free download on

“To put it simply, they are a walking, breathing and screaming cartoon: Loud, colorful and full of enough energy to put nearly any another band to shame.” - Radio Exile

Checkout the Video Playlist!!!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Do You know MEGOSH? You Should!

Forged from the bone-metal of ancient dragons,
Megosh rises, and the gods tremble...

Megosh is a band you should know about! The band is returning to The Legendary Dobbs on Saturday Nov. 17th at 11pm. Megosh's first time in Philly was at The Liberty Musicfest at the Legendary Dobbs in Aug 2012. Basically the Came and kicked major ass. They Blew me away with their performance along with those in attendence. Megosh Brings it Hard!!! The best way to describe the band is progressive punk/alternative blending great harmonies, crushing complex guitars with catchy songs. I recommend checking out their great professional video and their songs to get glimpsh of what Megosh brings to the stage. Jim Thorpe - The Legendary Dobbs

Baltimore's Megosh has been toiling behind the scenes for some time brewing up a catalog of high-energy intelligent rock. Their music is melodic with post-progressive elements and frequent forays into the territory of alternative metal, but they manage to maintain an overriding pop sensibility. Megosh somehow fuses these eclectic ingredients into a surprisingly cohesive stew, a sound that is clearly their own. Impressively complex instrumental material will certainly appeal to the musician but, with Megosh, songcraft still reigns- creative use of rhythm and catchy melodies are certain to captivate a wide audience. On top of all this, the front line serves up tasty three-part harmonies- something rarely heard on today's rock scene.

The Wayside Shakeup! This Saturday 2/2 @ The Legendary Dobbs

The Wayside Shakeup is a new band atThe Legendary Dobbs. Reviewing their first performance on our 2nd floor stage, they caught my ear with there well crafted pop rock songs backed by a tight well rounded band that grooved. I heard the influences of Wilco, Neil Young and OAR in their songwriting, which is not a bad group of artists to be in comparision too. There was a great crowd watching on and getting into the Shakeup's live performance. I recommend you check out The Wayside Shakeup if your into those artists. They will be on the 1st floor stage on Saturday Nov. 17th at 8pm. - Jim Thorpe, The Legendary Dobbs

The Wayside Shakeup began in 2003 with some quiet jams in an apartment in Haddon Township, NJ, a suburban town just over the bridge from Philadelphia. Founding members Chris D'Antonio and Rob Volansky bypassed the usual acoustic cover list and ended up writing a handful of original tunes, one of which ended up as a centerpiece on their debut album. After a brief stint, though, Volansky headed overseas, and D'Antonio took root in Philly. When Rob returned in 2007, the two began writing songs in earnest. Since then, they've played a number of rooms in the area, from acoustic cover gigs around South Jersey to all-originals sets at The Legendary Dobbs on South St. They've added and subtracted players through the years and recently debuted a five-piece lineup at MilkBoy in Ardmore. The Wayside Shakeup's self-titled debut album emerged in 2011 and is a collection of songs that reflect the diversity of Chris and Rob's influences. Ranging from shameless pop to wobbly blues, and with a sly wink to everything from Chris's roots in doo-wop to Rob's grunge ethic, The Wayside Shakeup offers a cross-section of songs tied together by players who want, simply, to make music that they would want to listen to. Groove out, belt out, chill out. The hooks are there to do with as you please, so feel free to sing along.

The Wayside Shakeup plan on getting back into the studio to record more new music in early 2013

We have a "new-ish" video called Avalon. In light of Hurricane Sandy, we plan on playing this one Saturday night because it is about Avalon, New Jersey.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

H RV RD (Equal Vision Records) returns to Dobbs on Nov. 14th!!!

The Legendary Dobbs can't wait until H RV RD's return show on Wednesday November 14th w/ an amazing bill w/ Sugar Glyder, The Great SOCIO, Junior Astronomers and Climbing the Walls. This is going to be a show you will not forget. We had the pleasure 4 months ago to book H RV VD on 3-5 days notice because of a show cancellation. WOW!!! is all I can say, the band has become one of my favorites, Here is a Clip of their last show at Dobbs.  Jim Thorpe (The Legendary Dobbs)

HRVRD is a five-piece outfit based from Charlotte, NC, a band that combines indie-rock with post-hardcore and pop sensibility.When listening to a HRVRD song you can expect complex rhythms underneath swirling guitar effects and highly technical playingwith nodstowards progressive rock. Their debut EP Animals was released in 2008; their debut full-length, The Inevitable And I was released on December 1, 2009.
“Live music has so much potential for greatness,” expresses HRVRD vocalist Jesse Clasen. “To me, a studio recording is a snapshot of where a song is at that moment, and it should always continue to evolve and take on new perspectives. Live performances are opportunities to share something unique and beautiful with your audience…I've always admired the artists that let their songs blossom into something new and exciting even after they've been recorded.”
On the new album, HRVRD’s haunting sound blends intricate and cinematic guitar riffs with dark, passionate lyrics and powerful, driving rhythms. Effortlessly encompassing the impressive technical qualities of underground progressive-rock and experimental outfits, while remaining accessible through honest, relatable lyrics, the fusion creates a full-bodied, dreamlike ambience filled with catchy, yet sonically sinister melodies. Clasen’s ethereal voice defies genres and offers vast vocal range with a wide spectrum of stylistic tones that stand out as notable without overpowering the outfit’s more than capable instrumentations. Their true talent shines not only in their ability to perfectly juxtapose driving and atmospheric elements in a complimentary manner but also in their use of those musical elements to guide and balance the lyrical storytelling.
“The most important thing we kept in mind [on the new album] was a strict "less is more" rule,” Herrera notes. “In the end, I think the songs are more mature, more heartfelt and more honest, we used all of our experiences from the first record and tried to learn from them to make a better, shorter and more focused product.” Lyrically, the new album shares a journey of intense internal struggles of the ordinary man. “It’s about the tension between positive and negative perspectives on relationships, progression, religion, and science,” Clasen expounds. “And more personally, it’s me working out who and what I love, and why.”The band will release the sophomore, full-length album through Upstate NY-based independent label Equal Vision Records later this year, with the record’s release date and details yet to be revealed.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Reef the Lost Cauze kicks off "OFFICIAL" at Lengendary Dobbs on Thurs. Nov. 8th 2012

Once regarded as Philadelphia Hip Hop’s “best kept secret,” Reef the Lost Cauze is no longer the best underground MC you’ve never heard of: he’s ready to shed the title once and for all and become a household name. The battle-tested MC is poised to have a breakthrough year: not by switching up his style or conforming to ready-made ideals of mainstream acceptability, but rather by staying true to the basic formula of raw rhymes and murderous beats. Reef stands as the new sound of Philadelphia. He carries with him the city’s long-standing tradition of musical history and innovation.

Reef The Lost Cauze is a Philadelphia emcee with his sights set on the top of the hip hop game. While some emcees are strictly studio and basic battle cats, Reef brings well-rounded talent to the table with formidable stage presence, skills of the pen and a ferocious freestyle ability. HIs latest offering, "Fight Music" features Jedi MInd Tricks front man Vinnie Paz, legendary street lyricist Kook G. Rap and more. Reef is geared up to hiit the road this fall in support of his collaborative project, "King & The Cauze" with King Magnetic. The project boasts features from Joell Ortiz, Saigon and more with production by Marco Polo, Stoupe the Enemy of Mankind and others.

Having spent a great deal of his childhood acting in plays and performing, Reef fell in love with Hip Hop at the age of eight and has been rhyming ever since. By the time he reached high school, Reef earned a reputation as a deadly battle emcee -- jumping in any and every cipher he came across. It was not until his acceptance to Philadelphia's University of the Arts with a film scholarship that he began to visualize a serious career on the mic. It's here that he began to hone his songwriting skills, and worked on perfecting his stage presence.

Having recently worked with mainstream artists, Gym Class Heroes, as well as underground hip hop's elite, Jedi Mind Tricks, and hip hop rising star, Termanology, Reef has demonstrated his chameleon-like ability to stand out on a wide array of tracks. He places a determined emphasis on balance with his songwriting and performance abilities.

"I love the rush of the crowd," explains Reef. "I love to be on stage and have a place full of strangers being amazed at what I'm saying. I'm much more at home and relaxed on stage performing my music."

Reef continues to incorporate his life and business experiences into his projects, and his range of expression will allow fans the opportunity to truly identify with him. As he grows in the world of entertainment, it is certain that Reef stands to become one of this year's breakthrough artists, en-route to solidifying his spot as hip hop's next superstar.

ReverbNation Profile:

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Carfax Abbey releases new CD "Caustic Revolution"

Philadelphia-based industrial rock band Carfax Abbey manages to seamlessly blend hard rock elements and a superstructure of electro-industrial sound to form a relentless assault on the listener. Electrifying, high-intensity performances onstage take the recorded sound to a whole new level. Cafrax Abbey Just released their new CD “Caustic Revolutions” on Halloween Night 10/31/12 at the Dracula’s Ball in Philadelphia, PA. There are no words for their performance. The Video below of one of their classic songs “Spitshine” is just a small example what people experienced this Night.

Caustic Revolution is Carfax Abbey’s 3rd major release and first concept album, telling the story of a malign invasion by an unknown force, which leads to apocalypse and rebellion. The album delves into the band’s hardcore roots of industrial rock, as well as crossing over into some unexpected territories. The album contains eleven original songs that masterfully blend into one massive sonic tapestry.

To Purchase the CD:

To Purchase MP3:
Amazon: has Sound Clips

Itunes: has Sound Clips
Caustic Revolution is also available on Spotify and Pandora