May I direct you towards the Horizons//Gorwelion tumblr page. It gives you an idea of the type of events they’re currently attending in order to promote the 12 artists that have been selected. It also features a short article that I wrote on how to get your music heard in Wales.
Press, Print & Blogs – Where to publicise your music in Wales?
Getting your music noticed, has in many ways, never been easier. Online music libraries like soundcloud and bandcamp, as well as the people power of social media, make getting your music into people’s ears relatively straightforward. However, going that step further, and getting your music on the radar of people that can spread the word for you takes a little more initiative.
We all know that the internet is a great way of connecting to fans and promoting your music. It was around a decade ago that Arctic Monkeys started putting their music online for free, eventually graduating from “I’ve found this great band on myspace” to, “fastest selling debut album EVER”. One thing that has changed is that now, every artist, band, bedroom DJ has a soundcloud page and a youtube channel. It serves as a shop window or portfolio which is easy for fans, journalists, bloggers and radio producers to access. You have control over what appears on your page so you can give away free downloads to some or all users, limit access to older material, and crucially, analyse your statistics.
Making it easy for people to hear your work is a good place to start, so build up a comprehensive online presence. Start a facebook page, a twitter account, put music on soundcloud and bandcamp, make films and put them online. If someone mentions your band to a friend, and they want to find you, it’s important to be easy to discover. Many people prefer gigs to listening online, so pointing people towards a gig you have, however small, can be a fantastic way to reach them. It also gives you a bit of credibility, if someone has decided to give you a gig, you can’t be that bad.
I am often surprised and impressed by the extent some artists will go to to publicise their music to blogs. Last week I received an email from an artist I had never heard of saying that they had a gig in Cardiff that night. They had researched local blogs and wanted to put my name on the guest list. Incidentally, I wasn’t able to make it, but I was so impressed by the attention to detail and determination of the artist that I took some time to listen to her soundcloud. It’s important to remember that behind the blogs, the articles and the radio programmes, there are real music fans, and going that extra step to put your name on their radar can be very effective.
In Wales there isn’t a huge amount of radio air time available for Welsh music in any language. However there are some DJs and producers that are real champions of the cause. Find out who they are (twitter is a good place to start) and how to get in touch with them. Follow people like Adam Walton, Bethan Elfyn from Radio Wales and Huw Stephens, Georgia Ruth, Lisa Gwilym and Gareth Iwan from Radio Cymru. These people can play you on the radio and that’s only ever a good thing.
Ultimately, publicising your music is down to you. Sending links to your music to as many people as possible, and tailoring any message you send to that particular person is the most important thing you can do. If you’re proactive and committed people will be impressed, and soon people will start publicising your music for you.