Friday, May 29, 2009

Moby and Citizen Cope discuss radio

So these last few days have been most unsettling to me, lots going on, still trying to digest things, will blog a bit about what I can (unfortunately will have to keep the most spectacular moments to myself for different reasons) hoping it will help. Will start with what's last (apart from tonight, going to Atlantic city for another concert!, so much driving is killing me)
Yesterday I attended a panel discussion with Moby moderating!. The issue at stake: Is radio still important to artists?, as part of a Noncomm radio meeting.
As surprise guests Citizen Cope and Sean Hoots (Hoots & Hellmouth) joined. A pic to illustrate (totally s*cks, seems a halos reunion but I was quite beat)

Was pretty interesting and Moby turned out to be a quite a hilarious but serious talker. To take the suspense out of the answer to the moto at stake, it really depends on the type of audience you have (internet, word of mouth...) but it always helps. And of course Non commercial radio is essential to these artists who don't go for big station fan bases.
But they dealt more with other topics such as success, how it affects a career...well, they agreed it can be a quite intense experience that may take you time to deal with but none of them consider themselves mainstream artists and as Citizen Cope put it "you make a hit for you, you aim for a song that brings a tear to your eye, goosebumps when you play it, touches you and hopefully it will touch someone else too" and "whatever success you achieve is accidental". As Moby added, record labels, in these their desperate times, can compel artists to take dramatic decisions.. He also said that success confused him for a few years on how to move forward, and that his moment of "epiphany" happened at a Grammy awards, sitting between Ludacris and Christina Aguilera, and thinking "what am I doing here, I have nothing in common with these people", that with all due respect "mainstream world had nothing to do with me". He remembered past milestones like his first ever release in 1983 with a hardcore band that sold 200 copies, or the time he did an interview in a top 40 radio st. where he was addressed to as Mob 9! (that came up when asked about what makes an interview good or bad, ahem, we get the idea) or the time he was included in a metal radio playlist and had to play concerts in between heavy metal bands (quit it as a mere "self preservation" thing, audiences weren't exactly appreciative!).
As Citizen Cope put it, the hardest part is getting to have the first 100 people in a venue, after that it all sort of comes naturally.
And they also brought up the festivals, so in fashion these days, also so helpful in terms of taking your music to more people, and surprisingly going on in the weirdest places (Moby's summer gigs include places such as Romania, Croatia, Morocco or Estonia). Well, those people deserve some quality gigs too!.
In the end, nothing new under the sky but very nice and interesting to hear these clever guys talking about these things in such a no fuss upfront way.
To wrap things up there were a few concerts scheduled later, I saw Cory Chisel again (always up for it!) and Serena Ryder, quite a voice.

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