Archive for the 'website' Category

LoopMasters: Audio Producers, Check It!!

Loopmasters.com, the ultimate audio sampling site based out of the UK. “Loopmasters first came to light in 1999 under the ‘Beatnik Samples’ banner, which released 4 Sample CDs known as the ‘Modular Series’, and received excellent reviews in the UK and overseas by the likes of Future Music (Platinum Awards), Sound on Sound (5 star reviews) and many other magazines, mainly for the flexibility and general quality of these titles. The titles were distributed worldwide and were used by many recording artists, multimedia designers, library music producers and dance music producers.” In 2003 Loopmasters officially launched. They’re not your typical audio sampling web site. Loopmasters searches for well known producers to contribute packages of useable samples. We interviewed the Loopmasters team about their product. Check it out…

LG: Hey Loopmasters, hows the audio sampling business these days? Any big news?

LM: Good thanks, lots of great stuff coming out over the coming weeks, we launch Global Underground Sample Series, and we have some great artist titles coming out including a Hardcore pack from Breeze and Styles, trance from Jon 00 Flemming, and some great dance titles from artists like Meat Katie, Jon Carter, Funkagenda and many others!

We also just starting working with Industrial Strength records who have some great Drum and Bass, Techno and Dubstep libraries amoung others in the pipeline, so its exciting times here at Loopmasters with some fantastic new royalty free samples coming from some of hottest producers on the planet. We just took over a new office which also has a nice music studio next door, and have expanded our team to help with social media, distributor projects and some new ideas we have cooking – so watch this space!

LG: What do you look for in the producers that you get to upload samples to your site?

LM: Overall it has to be quality and inspiration every time, as we can help with technical formatting and content selection – overall the producers must have passion and really know their style, genre, or instrument. Apart from that they must be ready to give up their best sounds and musical ideas for the project without worry – as we know that we have to make our customers happy.

LG: Are there any recognizable songs out there that have Loopmasters samples in them?

LM: There are a lot out there for sure, but we prefer to generally operate like a doctor/patient relationship and keep our customers identity a secret.

LG: Anything in the Loopmasters future that we should be aware of?

LM: There is a lot going on here at the moment, we are lucky to have a great group of producers buying and trusting us to provide them with the right sounds, genres and formats – as styles change we have a constant challenge to find the best people to come up with the goods. Outside of our core business we are looking into supporting our customer base more and providing useful information and opportunities – so we launched looptv.net to give an industry focus for music production, artists and interviews. Also we have an exciting record label related project launching which will be new for us and hopefully something we will be very proud of.

In the meantime – watch out for upcoming releases from our Artist and Label series, along with some fantastic products from our partner labels – a couple to keep an eye on are Wave Alchemy, Push Button Bang and Drumdrops.

Thanks for the interview, Loopmasters. Make sure to check out their profile on MixMatchMusic where you can download several of their samples!

Distribute Yourself All Over The Place

Are you a musician? Are you creating music that your friends and fans love? You want to distribute your jams but are completely confused in this weird music distribution world? We empathize… It’s hard to know where to go and what to do! You want to make sure that you will successfully and effectively distribute yourself all over the place, right? MixMatchMusic has been around the block a few times and has some good ideas of where you should go. While we were at this year’s Winter Music Conference, we made friends with a multifaceted service called Symphonic Distribution. Symphonic Distribution is a digital content distributor and services provider aimed at providing the best in content delivery, customer service, marketing, education, and more for music industry artists, managers, and record labels across the globe. They have a proven track record and currently provide services to hundreds of clients based in countries such as Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, Australia, Sweeden, Bosnia & Herzegovina, India, Japan, USA, Canada, Portugal, and countless other countries and cultures around the globe. In addition to their services, Symphonic Distribution also has several distinct brands for the intention of expanding the reach of a client.

SymDirect – www.symdirect.com
SymDirect is a upload fee based distribution service allowing artists and labels to keep 100% of their royalties. This service is different then the normal distribution model and in addition, undercuts MANY imitators. Consider this to be… the official post office of digital distribution. You pick the package (or shipping price), we deliver, and you get ALL of your royalties! No other charges or hidden fees!

SymIntranet – www.symintranet.com
SymIntranet is Symphonic Distribution and SymDirect’s portal for it’s signed labels and artists. The extensive portal includes marketing materials from stores, educational tutorials relating to music business, music production, and music marketing, and links to helpful initiatives aimed at helping labels grow! The website will continue to be updated to contain more educational materials, marketing plans, and more!

Check them out and please, don’t hesitate to shoot them an email if you’re interested in distributing your music and creating a name for yourself as an artist. support@symphonicdistribution.com

Bandize: Organize Your Band (Alpha)

Bandize: Organize your band from the ground up! This service is not even in beta yet (invite only for now), so it’s impressive that they’re already getting noticed. By helping you organize and manage all aspects of running a band, will Bandize put band managers out of a job? Probably not, but it will likely make it a hell of a lot easier. Artists should focus on making more great music and not have to worry about the minutiae of day-to-day band management, like accounting and product management.

Just based on their splash page, Bandize looks promising – a clean and intuitive look and feel as well as clear and concise organization of the various areas of band management. Let’s take a closer look at the areas they cover:

Shows/Tours – Manage dates, plan accommodations, track merch sales, store maps and directions…

Accounting – Log expenses, track money owed, tag transactions…

Social Network Synching – Push all your data from one place. Includes SNs like Myspace, PureVolume, Last.fm, Eventful…

Product Management – Track inventory and sales, get “out of stock” alerts…

Contact Management – Manage and categorize contacts, keep track of who talked to whom, when and why…

Task Management – Create and assign tasks, set due dates, send reminders…

Communication – Send internal messages and leave comments, upload files…

Asset Management – Log and track your gear, personal items…

Album Management – Upload cover art, album info, post reviews…

Sounds pretty sweet, right? For more, check them out at SXSW, follow them on Twitter, read their blog, or have your say at Get Satisfaction.

Open Mic – Where?

You’ve uploaded your stems, been collaborating with others, publishing your music on MixMatchMusic… things are going well! So what else can you do to get noticed? Have you ever attended an open mic? What? You don’t know where to go? No worries.

Openmic.us, like MixMatch, is dedicated to helping indie musicians find places to play and be heard. Also, there are all sorts of tips for musicians on the site. How to rock an open mic, tips on recording, editing & mixing and more. The OpenMic.us site is comprised of 43 local city web sites. Go to the site, scroll down and check out the open mics available in your city. Who knows… the right person could be grabbing a drink while listening to you jam.

The OpenMic.us Network is operated by Open Mic Entertainment, the premier operator of live-music open mic events in the U.S.

“Citing a severe shortage of reliable open mic information in the Web, we decided to verify the accuracy of every open mic that we could find”, stated OpenMic.us founder, David Craver. He continued, “Since we have over 13 years of experience in running live music open mics, we felt that we really understood the needs of the open mic musicians in our country”.

“We like to support anything that helps musicians”, stated Electro-Voice PR Chief, Guy Low. He also said, “The OpenMic.us Network is a valuable resource for musician hobbyists and professional musicians alike.”

MixMatchMusic Launches Tra.kz

It seems that the more accessible and fast information becomes, the greater the urge is to make it go faster. The evolution it took to go from snail mail to e-mail was not only a giant cost and speed leap, but a shift in thinking about the way to convey information simply. From there, IM made short and fast the norm for online communication. With these changes in communication and upgrades in data sharing speeds, artists are now not only able to immediately present new content to their fans, but they’re also able to spread the information about that content much more rapidly. Now, as the internet culture reaches another stepping stone in social networking and media, Facebook status messages and sub-141 character Twitter messages have become commonplace, making the need to dumb down traditionally fingernail-on-chalkboard length URLs to something that can link to a site and still hold space for a description. There are numerous sites that provide services like these already, Twitpic for pictures and bit.ly for other content, but this morning marks the launch of a URL shortener specifically made to direct readers to music related content.

MixMatchMusic has been working diligently with the online music community through their site which promotes the collaboration, organization and monetization of user created content. And while online artist content and collaboration remain the primary focus, MMM has been forward thinking in their approach by quickly recognizing and assimilating various aspects of the ever-expanding musical presence on the web, as evidenced by both their Remix Wizard and their site sequencer. It makes sense then that today they offered up a new and incredibly useful tool to the online community in tra.kz, a URL shortener for all things music.

When sending a shortened URL over the web, it’s easy for other people to skim links if they’re not sure of where it’s going or why they should be interested. With tra.kz, users will always know that the link points to an Mp3, artist interview, music video or something else musical, making the custom URL creator perfect for anyone trying to share music related content with a simple and easy to remember link. Like the press release about the tra.kz launch found at tra.kz/l82g.

In conjunction with the launch of tra.kz, numerous artists will team with MixMatchMusic today to release a new song on Twitter each hour. With musicians and fans increasingly turning to Twitter to keep up to date with the latest group information, the ability to share songs and other band related information through an easily recognizable music URL shortener can become central in online promotions. It’d be easy to stop there, create the tra.kz/___ URL and leave it at that. But in the interest of making the service social platform friendly, the Twitter box is provided right below the short form to send directly from there.

Keep checking in today with @EvolvingMusic and @MixMatchMusic for new songs released using the tra.kz link shortener. Artists will include Pepper, Slightly Stoopid and Throw Me the Statue to name just a few. The folks over at Controlled Substance Sound Labs are using the launch as a platform for their artists to interact with their fans and harness the TwitterVerse to drive content exposure. As someone just latching onto Twitter, the idea of something as easy as tra.kz to identify music related content comes as a welcome way to filter links that I’m simply not interested in. For some solid Bay Area hip-hop, I recommend with my first use of tra.kz The Tones’ “The Movemeant” over at tra.kz/thetones. I’m also enjoying this multi-lingual track from Breez Evahflowin and Indiefeed’s very own Dirt E. Dutch at tra.kz/4wind . Enjoy!

Sharing Mp3s in Twitter

While Evolving Music and MixMatchMusic have been Twitter devotees for several months now (check out why one of our writers thinks that musicians should jump on the Twitter bandwagon), I’ve only recently picked up the site. And I’ll be honest, if I hadn’t seen the iPhone app Gavroche has been rocking, I probably never would have. I put up an account several months ago, but the idea of just text messages coming in, or needing to look at a browser window seemed ridiculous to me. I’m not sitting at home checking my computer to see what other people are up to. But when Gavroche introduced me to Tweetie where you can post automatically, get a nice streamlined list of responses and other peoples’ status messages, I was intrigued. When he showed me how easy it was to post photos to the site from the phone, I was sold. And now, with even more features, I’m beginning to feel like Twitter culture is slowly infiltrating everything (and now to see if they can come up with a workable business model to actually stay in business.)

But up until now, the shortened URLs, the pictures, the @replies… these are fun things that have kept me busy, but haven’t yet broken into the main area of interest that I have… namely, big shocker here, music. So when I read about Songly, I was of course intrigued. The service allows you to use ANY URL that is hosting an Mp3 and post it as a Tweet. Here’s the kicker though… it doesn’t just shorten the URL and make it tweetable… it wraps it up in a flash player so anyone can listen.

To try out Songly, click here, and to read my first tweet attempt at such a thing, click here. I’ve used the new Souls of Mischief song, “Tour Stories” (click here for Souls of Mischief interview.) And for those of you rocking FireFox, Songly has an integrated tool for it. Talk about musical connectivity. A fantastic way to share music that will surely evolve with Twitter, forming the future of content sharing. Only drawback? Since the player they use is Flash, your iPhone friends won’t be able to listen until they get to a computer.

Universal Backs Live Video Streams

About a year ago I examined a Wired article looking at the head of the Universal Music Group, Doug Morris, and his attempts to move against the current of technology that was slowly eroding his old-timer’s hold on music distribution. My how times have changed. Not only has UMG joined forces with the other three major labels to eradicate DRM on iTunes purchases, now they’re actively joining the swelling ranks looking for digital solutions to real-life problems.

UMG, home of artists like 50 Cent and Lil’ Wayne, is always looking for new ways to interact with fans and bring their favorite artists to them in ways that are both exciting and relevant. Because of this and the potential they see in the company, UMG has joined forces with Kyte, an emerging web start-up that is aiming to fill a niche not currently serviced by YouTube: live video streams.

UMG is hoping that this will prompt massive coverage and interest in short live broadcasts from the backstage dressing rooms, the road, clips of shows or anywhere else these artists might find themselves wanting to reach out and directly connect to fans visually. It takes away the overhead of big-budget, high quality videos that need to be processed and uploaded and replaces it with a web-based streamlined idea that brings the live video straight to the viewer.

Of course, given that these video streams are live, it could become difficult if not impossible to control the content. I’m wondering how long it’ll take for UMG to take issue with that… This could also be a shot across the bow of YouTube as the four majors actively begin renegotiating licensing agreements with Google’s video baby.


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