Should musicians pay blogs to review their music?

submit-your-musicThis morning, I received an unexpected email from a person saying they contributed to a well known music blog and just happened to come across my music which they liked. The email explained the blog received 700 – 1200 unique visitors per day and invited me to check it out and submit my music for consideration of a review (with no guarantee of acceptance). Seemed like a genuine offer I thought, but then when I checked out the blog itself and read the Ts & Cs on the about page I found out there was a catch – they have paid and non-paid options for submissions. 

IE Free Option A) album may be listed in the ‘weekly round up’ section of music they liked (whatever that is) or

$25 Option B) a written review will rate your music and include the genre, cover art, URL and two links to your music.

A further two options priced at $35 and $40 respectively would include more details. 

Sounds tempting right?

Well not really, to be honest, it sounds like a bit of a scam if you ask me but maybe this should be viewed like a marketing cost. Then again, maybe it’s enough that we make our music at great expense and then make it available for FREE on SpotifySoundcloud and other streaming services. In the past I received reviews of my work from Hotpress magazine which was greatly appreciated (on my website if you care to read) and they didn’t cost me a cent. Am I a cynic or has anyone else had success getting music reviewed on blogs or press without paying for it? Thoughts, opinions, comments welcome… check out my music here cheers.

EP added to playlist IMS

Excited to hear this week that my songs ‘Black Irish Dogs’, ‘The Highway’ and ‘Country Mountain’ from my new EP will be playlisted on KCLR 96FM Irish Music Show on Nov 7th.

Follow me on facebook @iambead

Or Twitter @iambeadman @roddie_cleere show every Wednesday from 22:00 #irishmusic #indie #phillynott #singersongwriter #blackirishdogs #kclr96fm

Recording session with Boz Boorer day 1

1st June 2017

Day 1 – ‘Bury The Ghost’ recording sessions with Boz Boorer, Serra Vista Studio, Portugal.

Landed in Faro airport in the afternoon after getting a morning flight from Dublin, for another epic session with Boz Boorer.

Got a lift to the mountain (Monchique) by his lovely wife Lyn and drove past some flying storks on the drive up. Man, I have never seen anything like it. The site of a stork flying across your windscreen, was like something out of a Jurassic park movie. These guys are huge.

I arrived at the studio late afternoon to find the Boz man in the studio but looking unusually distracted. It turns out he was looking for songs on his back up drives. Im not sure if I was much help but a few minutes later, the songs were located.

Once found, we got started on a couple of my songs. The first song (working title ‘folksong’) was easy, being a mainly acoustic affair so I started the session with this. 

Boz had a new acoustic guitar, an Alvarez and asked if I would like to play it. I gave it a few strums and agreed I would. The last time I was here was in 2010, recording my ‘Battle Stations’ album and I had used a really old Epiphone acoustic which I was really fond of and looking forward to playing but there was no sign of it about and I did’t feel like asking for fear of putting him to the trouble of looking for it. Boz is a very generous and obliging fellow and I was sure if I asked, he would have gone out of his way to accommodate me. 

I was very tired as I started to play (10pm) but was really determined to make a good start on the session as I knew I would only have a couple of days in the studio with Boz. He planned to fly to Rome to work with Morrissey on his new album. Turns out the songs on his back up drives were ones he wrote for the forthcoming Morrissey album. I can’t wait to hear them.

The next song we worked on was another acoustic track called ‘Country Mountain’. This one was written in Portugal the last time I was here (September, 2010) influenced by my experience with Boz and my friends. On writing this, I had decided that if I was lucky enough to ever get the chance to work with Boz again, it would be here, in Serra Vista Studio that I would record this song. It turned out amazing with Boz adding a mandolin as requested by moi, over the acoustic guitars. Beautiful…

As day one came to a close, from the control room, we listened back for a while and marvelled at the work we had achieved together. It wasn’t finished at this point but we could tell this had potential to be something really special.

I started singing along as we listened but not words.. just a weird harmony whoop that came to me instantly. I would often sing out noises rather than words from a very young age. Even when I was first starting out, in bands in Dublin, we would write songs together and the next thing you know the BEAD would start howling like a banshee before the rest of the band looking like they were in the presence of a madman. 

Boz threw me look and a big smile. 

“What the **** was that? That was good! Will you remember to sing that in the morning?” he enquired.

I was too tired to do anymore for now so I promised him I would do my best to remember the weird harmony. As I went off to find my bed for the night, I hummed the harmony to myself hoping to ingrain it in my tired brain for recall the next day.