Posts tagged ‘artists’

Music Videos Get Age Rating

October 1, 2014 3:49 am


A pilot scheme to introduce age ratings to online music videos is to begin on Friday as part of moves to bring the industry into line with film and television. Sony, Universal and Warner Bros have all
signed up to the initiative with YouTube and Vevo also getting on board, although the scheme will only affect artists signed to UK labels for now. The new system is being overseen by the British Board
of Film Classification, which will dole out the PG, 12, 12A, 15 and 18 certificates familiar to movie buffs.

The Local Show: Sandra McCracken, Don Chaffer, Randall Goodgame, and Eric Peters

September 3, 2014 11:26 am


Being that Nashville is a town built on the monetization of music, it’s remarkably refreshing to watch talented songwriters who are more concerned with community than commerce. A roomful of lucky listeners got to experience that very thing last night at the inaugural kick-off of The Local Show – a recurring songwriter showcase series put on by Andrew Peterson and his creative collective known as the Rabbit Room. From the opening reading of a Wendell Berry passage that spoke of broadening the membership of your life, to the partnership with local non-profit Show Hope, to the borrowed capos and guitars on stage, the theme of community ran deep throughout the night.

The first night of The Local Show featured some of Nashville’s best kept singer-songwriter secrets: Sandra McCracken, Don Chaffer (Waterdeep), Randall Goodgame, and Eric Peters. What was immediately noticeable about this foursome – and what makes The Local Show such an immediate standout from the typical songwriter rounds that take place all over the city – was the spirit of creative camaraderie between all of the artists. Not only are they all professionally intertwined through a variety of album recordings and concert appearances, but they are all friends and fans of each other’s work as well. This was none more evident than on the constant chorale of “ghost harmonies” that wandered in and out of every song – even the new, unreleased ones. The friendly interactions that took place before, after, and during the songs showed evidence of a group of people that were fluent in each other’s lives. During normal songwriter rounds, you can usually spot the feigned interest of the performers as they wait for their spot to come back around. Whether they are thinking about their next song or the errands that they need to run the next day, the vacant gaze and forced banter always give them away. However, this was not the case at The Local Show, where each artist was fully engaged during each other’s songs – possibly even more so than during their own offerings.

From a musical perspective, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more entertaining and enriching collection of songs packed into a single setting. There were lyrics crafted from the perspective of an abandoned, rusty Schwinn and a pre-suicidal cancer patient, as well as hymns of timeless modernity sung alongside humorously instructional odes on how not to get eaten by bears. The songs were all beautiful, haunting, resonant, accessible, and undeniably life-affirming in equal measure. These were not three-and-a-half minute pop ditties ephemerally meant to lighten a moment, but instead were carefully crafted refrains meant to help soundtrack a lifetime’s journey. With meditations like “Will we choose the noise of our desire or the hope that makes no sound” and simple reminders that “the sky must be enjoyed,” The Local Show reminded that there are good musical companions to walk with you along the way.

Being a fan of all four artists, it was really nice to hear familiar songs in such a relaxed, intimate setting. The Well Coffeehouse provided an incredible atmosphere for the songwriters to sing their songs and tell their stories, while the lightening storm flashing through the wall of windows provided an arresting backdrop. At a point where technical glitches threatened to sidetrack the mood, Don Chaffer simply unplugged his guitar, rested a foot on the front row of chairs, and sang a gorgeous break-up ballad to a pin-drop quiet crowd. One of the bonus benefits to relaxed settings like this is that new songs usually see their first light of day. On this night, Randall Goodgame debuted a new song called “Cellphone Jones,” Eric Peters introduced “Nobody,” and Sandra McCracken played “God’s Highway,” “We Will Feast,” and “Gracious Light” from her recently-recorded-but-not-yet-released next album. Don Chaffer even read a stunningly wistful prose poem of his called “On the Iron Bar and the Price You Pay, James Dean” that had everyone simultaneously laughing and introspecting at the same time. All four artists set the precedent that you never know what might be in store for you at The Local Show but you can rest assured it’s going to be good.

The Local Show will be looking to recapture the communal spark every other Tuesday in September, with plans to move to every week in October. The next show will be September 16 and will feature Jill Phillips, Andy Gullahorn, Andrew Osenga, and Jeremy Casella – another foursome whose professional/personal DNA mix together in a way that should provide the same uniquely communal atmosphere as the first show.

You can find out more about The Local Show and purchase advanced tickets for the next show here:

September 16 @ 8pm
Andy Gullahorn, Jill Phillips, Jeremy Casella, and Andrew Osenga

The Well Coffeehouse
690 Old Hickory Blvd,
Brentwood, TN 37027

Tickets: $12 in advance, $15 at the door

How the Mexican Cooking Network Built an Online Shopping Experience With Video

August 12, 2014 2:08 pm


In November 2013, Marcelino Raygoza combined his passions for traditional Mexican cooking and e-commerce and launched the Mexican Cooking Network. On the website, viewers can watch recipe videos and purchase the products that are featured. Marc’s dynamic platform serves up supplementary text and links alongside the videos as they play.

The Mexican Cooking Network website is a shining example of thinking beyond the player. While we may have different overall goals for our web content, we should all be thinking about optimizing the relationship between our pages and our videos. We were also really interested to hear about Marc’s DIY production process, and how quickly he learned to make his own videos.

### Making Purchases Frame by Frame

As a software developer with extensive experience in e-commerce, Marc is always trying to find new, engaging ways to sell products online. “It’s important to make the customer experience fun and entertaining,” he explains.

While watching a cooking video, have you ever wondered where you can purchase the ingredients or cookware being used? On the Mexican Cooking Network website, purchase links and descriptions for these items appear in a panel beside the player in real time.

“From a consumer’s point of view, the overall experience is both entertaining and educational. From an advertising point of view, the technology platform is interesting as it keeps the customer engaged without leaving the website to learn more about the products used in the videos,” Marc says.

### Creating a Video Experience

Marc’s platform isn’t just about selling products. It also enables him to present relevant information in a seamless, timely fashion. He explains, “This model is a really cool way to promote products and provide additional information without saturating the video with too much text.” Once integrated, the pieces of the page are more effective both individually and collectively.

The truth is, you don’t have to build a special platform to facilitate a healthy relationship between your web page and your videos. Before you begin shooting or scripting a video, ask yourself: where will it live? How will the video enhance the experience on your page? How will the page content supplement the content in your video? How will that page relate with the other pages on your site, and your overall marketing strategy?

A video isn’t an isolated asset, and your page and your video will both benefit from thinking ahead!

### Marc’s DIY Living Room Studio

While Marc may be well-versed in engineering and e-commerce, the videos on the Mexican Cooking Network represent his first attempts at video production. After buying the domain name, he picked up a camera from Costco, created a makeshift studio in his living room, set up some lights based on a few Wistia Learning Center videos, and jumped right in! Take a look at his current setup:

Already, Marc has made great use of still shots, varied camera angles, overlaid text, and fun aprons, which all contribute to the playful appeal of his videos.

“We have a very sophisticated production process,” Marc jokes. “For this video, my 9-year-old daughter followed a traditional Mexican popsicle recipe that we constantly use, and I recorded and edited the video.”

“The lighting, the music, I go by my gut feeling, what I think looks good,” Marc says. Before he pushes his videos live, he gathers feedback from friends and adjusts them accordingly. “I’m not set on any one way, and I’m always willing to try new things,” he explains. “Because my background is in e-commerce, I learn something new during every shoot. This past weekend, I learned where the manual focus is. On the lens!”

Marc’s current video toolkit includes:

– Camera: Canon 70D DSLR
– Software: Sony Vegas Movie Studio
– Lighting: “You may find this hard to believe, but I use almost all the equipment mentioned in your Down & Dirty Lighting Kit video.”

### Tracking Down Royalty-Free Tunes

As part of his production process, Marc seeks out royalty-free tracks from independent artists on YouTube and SoundCloud, using search terms like “Mexican hip hop instrumental” and “banda rap instrumental.”

“I contact the artists to let them know that I will be using their music,” he explains. “The artists are very supportive and excited about their songs being used in ways they didn’t anticipate. It’s been a really neat way to promote independent musicians.”

Marc’s video about horchata features music by Alexander Manzano:

### Ask the Developer

We were curious about the development of Marc’s interactive shopping technology, so we asked him how he built it.

“The shopping cart integration took a week or so to build using the Wistia Player API,” he notes. “The original shopping cart was built based on the PopcornJS video API, but I migrated to Wistia to take advantage of the viewer metrics.”

Marc is in the early stages of licensing his integrated platform to other online sellers and filing a provisional patent for the technology. “Our business plan is evolving more toward a global e-commerce model that uses local suppliers to fulfill orders,” he explains.

### To Tortillas and Beyond

Marc is excited to produce many more cooking videos, and he hopes to visit restaurant kitchens to document chefs at work in the future. He notes, “Today, people expect information much more quickly than ever before. We are going to create a ‘next generation’ cookbook, using video recipes.”

I, for one, am inspired by Marc’s focus on integration and interactivity. I’m excited to see what Wistia and other video advocates can learn about how our pages and videos can work together and how we can grow our video production skills over time. Let’s face it, written content and video go together like avocado and lime; they’re fine individually, but delicious when combined.

How do you plan ahead for where your videos will end up? Can you think of any other websites that integrate video and text in interesting ways?

All these guacamole photos? We took them after we tried out Marc’s guacamole recipe for ourselves. Trust us, it was as tasty as it looks.

Spoon Perform “Inside Out” Backstage at “The Tonight Show”

August 5, 2014 10:55 pm

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Spoon did “Do You” on last night’s “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”, and while they were backstage, they delivered a more intimate performance of a different track from their just-released LP They Want My Soul. Watch their stripped down version of “Inside Out” below.

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The Range Performs “Jamie” and “Metal Swing” at Pitchfork Music Festival

August 5, 2014 3:44 pm

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Photo by Ebru Yildiz

The Range was one of the many artists at this year’s Pitchfork Music Festival, which took place at Union Park in Chicago July 18-20. Below, watch video of him performing “Jamie” and “Metal Swing”, from his latest album Nonfiction.Read our Rising feature on the Range, and check out photos from the fest here. Watch more videos from Pitchfork Music Festival 2014 here.



“Metal Swing”:


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Disclosure Perform “Latch” With Sam Smith on “Kimmel”

August 5, 2014 11:53 am


Photo via Instagram

Disclosure‘s Settle highlight “Latch” has been out since late 2012, but thanks in part to Sam Smith‘s recent wave of success, it’s been steadily rising in the charts and getting more radio play. Last night, Smith and the Lawrence brothers did their hit song on “Jimmy Kimmel Live”.

Read our Guest List interview with Disclosure.


Martin Scorcese knows why film is worth saving in a digital world

August 5, 2014 2:46 am


Kodak will keep on producing movie film in the near future, after several noted directors lobbied Hollywood studios into striking an agreement with the storied American company last week. But why is film worth saving in the first place, when digital technology makes major strides in convenience and quality every year? Legendary Taxi Driver and Raging Bull director Martin Scorcese has a few answers.

Scorcese, who himself switched to digital with The Wolf of Wall Street, has issued a passionate statement firmly in favor of preserving film, noting its “richer visual palette,” its reliable archival properties, and its important role in the history of cinema. “Would anyone dream of telling young artists to throw away their paints and…


Kathleen Hanna Reaches Out to Miley Cyrus for Collaboration After Miley Instagrams Bikini Kill Pics

August 4, 2014 5:11 pm


Late last week, Miley Cyrus took to Instagram to express her admiration for feminist punk pioneer Kathleen Hanna. She posted two photos of Hanna in the early 1990s, when she sang in Bikini Kill, including one of the iconic images of Hanna with “SLUT” written across her stomach.

This wasn’t entirely unexpected, as Miley has discussed feminism and gender politics in interviews, and it’s not that hard to imagine her being into “Suck My Left One” or “Double Dare Ya”.

Now, Hanna has provoked a world of rebel-girl fantasies: she reached out to Miley over Twitter to propose a collaboration. Hanna wrote:

Hey @MileyCyrus so sweet you posted pics of me…have an idea for an album that only you are daring enough to make .

— Kathleen Hanna (@kathleenhanna) August 4, 2014

Is Miley about to enter her riot grrrl/feminist killjoy period? Will they record as “Kathleen Hannah Montana”? Is this Revolution Bangerz Style Now? Someone get Miley a copy of Girls to the Front ASAP.

Read our 5-10-15-20 interview with Hanna.


NoiseTrade Is Hiring: Head of Product / Lead Designer

August 4, 2014 10:17 am


Head of Product / Lead Designer

Job Location: Nashville, TN / Long distance work possible for the right candidate.
Reporting to: President
Travel: If long distance, travel to Nashville 4-5 times per year.


About NoiseTrade
NoiseTrade is a music marketing, distribution, and tribe-building company, founded in 2008. In February of 2014, the company expanded its already robust platform to feature and serve authors and publishers with the launch of NoiseTrade Books. NoiseTrade and its platforms allow fans and readers to download free music and ebooks directly from content creators in exchange for an email address and postal code. With over 20,000 artists and authors giving away content on the site and 400,000 albums downloaded a month, NoiseTrade has a large and loyal audience of 1.3 million and growing.

Position Expectation
Candidates for the Head of Product role should have strong experience designing and managing complex UX projects and overseeing revenue-driving initiatives. The Head of Product will report directly to the President of NoiseTrade and will work daily alongside our Lead Developer and others on the development team to continue innovatively build the NoiseTrade platform.


What You’ll Do

  • Work with the executive team to develop an innovative product vision across desktop, tablet and mobile platforms.
  • Design the interface of the NoiseTrade platform from concept to wireframe to finished Photoshop file to pass on to front-end development. (Strong front-end experience a bonus qualification.)
  • Work alongside our development team to execute the product vision.
  • Oversee mobile strategy and lead product development of mobile apps and mobile-optimized experiences.
  • Assist in developing analytics to systematically measure performance of all aspects of the web experience and conversion funnel.
  • Collaborate with all other departments to ensure open communication about future product plans.


Who You Are

  • A talented and intuitive interface designer. High competency in Adobe Photoshop a must.
  • An effective manager with the desire to cultivate leadership
  • Committed to recruiting the best possible product, development and design team as NoiseTrade grows
  • Empathetic to the needs of customers (artists, authors, publishers, record labels, music fans, readers)
  • Obsessed with beautiful design experiences



  • 7+ years experience in ecommerce, mobile, and product design and management
  • Strong understanding of web technologies, programming languages and webpage design
  • Proven ability to develop and implement a successful social, platform, and ecommerce strategy, preferably in media (music, books, film, or other creative sectors).
  • Able to translate analytical data into strategic recommendations
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills. Confident presentation skills.
  • Great interpersonal skills
  • An avid music fan with a strong understanding of the current landscape of streaming and digital download music platforms.
  • Ideally an avid fan of digital publishing with a strong understanding of the ebook marketplace.
  • Intensely curious. Entrepreneurial. Hard-working. Self-starter.


How to Apply
Submit cover letter, portfolio and resume to



August 4, 2014 10:00 am


A San Diego man has been charged with sexual battery and mayhem after allegedly biting off another man’s fingertip during a scuffle at the Pasadena, CA stop of Beyoncé and Jay Z‘s “On the Run” tour Saturday night. Authorities allege that 25-year-old Roberto Alcaraz Garnica sexually assaulted a female attendee at the Rose Bowl concert, and proceeded to bite off the fingertip of the woman’s boyfriend when he stepped in to intervene, according to the Pasadena Star-News (via Billboard). Granica is currently being held on $100,000 bail.

According to Pasadena police Lt. John Luna, the alleged attack occurred after Alcaraz-Garnica groped a woman in her 20s who was attending the show, which drew a crowd of around 55,000 fans.

“The suspect sexually assaulted the female victim,” Luna told the Star-News. He says that the woman’s boyfriend confronted Granica, resulting in a dispute.

“During the altercation, the suspect bit the victim, causing serious injury to his finger,” the lieutenant said. “He lost the tip of one of his fingers.”

Police arrested 11 others during the Rose Bowl show: eight for public drunkeness, and three for ticket scalping. Granica, who was arrested inside the stadium 10 PM and booked later that night, is currently being held on $100,000 bail.

Representatives for both Jay-Z and Beyoncé have yet to comment. Meanwhile, the couple continued their Rose Bowl run with a second performance last night.

Arcade Fire Cover Jane’s Addiction’s “Been Caught Stealing”, Steal Fans’ Cell Phones

August 2, 2014 5:19 pm


Arcade Fire continued their streak of covers last night at the Forum in Los Angeles. This time, when they did “Been Caught Stealing” by Jane’s Addiction, they actually reached down and grabbed a few cell phones from fans in the front row. Then they did a little bit of Guns N’ Roses“Welcome to the Jungle” before transitioning into “Here Comes the Night Time”. Watch below via Stereogum.


Radiohead Drummer Philip Selway Shares “Coming Up For Air” Video

August 1, 2014 6:01 pm


Radiohead drummer Philip Selway has released the video for “Coming Up for Air”, from his forthcoming Weatherhouse LP. Directed by Spanish film collective NYSU, it shows a series of unspecified scenarios unfolding with mysterious detail, like a more obscure Magnolia. Watch it below. Weatherhouse is out October 7.


Pitchfork’s Show No Mercy and Blackened Music Launch Tinnitus Series With Ben Frost Show

August 1, 2014 4:00 pm


Pitchfork’s Show No Mercy has teamed up Blackened Music to present a new music series called Tinnitus. Tinnitus will focus on composers of extreme sound.

The first installment takes place October 18 with a performance by Ben Frost at The Wick in Brooklyn. Support acts are to be announced.

Tickets are $15 in advance, available here. (They will be $20 at the door.) Doors open at 8 p.m., and the music starts at 9. This is a 21+ event.

The Australian-born, Iceland-based composer Frost released his great album A U R O R A earlier this year. Read our “Guest List” interview with him here.

First Aid Kit Cover Jack White’s “Love Interruption”

August 1, 2014 11:00 am


First Aid Kit stopped by Australian radio station triple j recently to take part in their covers series, “Like a Version”. For their tribute, the Swedish duo selected Jack White’s “Love Interruption”. Below, watch footage of them performing the song.