Q&A: Joe Sparrow, A New Band A Day
Blog by Molly Jones under Media
Manchester music’s movers and shakers give us their unique perspective on the best (and worst) of working with unsigned acts…
Joe Sparrow runs the website A New Band A Day.
Favourite Manchester bands: Egyptian Hip Hop, Dutch Uncles, Young British Artists, D/R/U/G/S
What’s the best way for unsigned bands to approach you?
Emails please - [email protected] - with a very brief bio and a Soundcloud/Bandcamp/MySpace link. A good photo of the band also helps. I don't mind if you want to pretend that you're not a proud parent helping out your child's band; in fact, it's endearing. Or if you meet me at a gig, feed me booze and press a CD in my hand - the old methods work too.
How can they make an impression?
Easy - send me a link to your best song. If I don't like it, or don't think it's *quite* right for A New Band A Day, remember there are thousands of other blogs who might like it, so don't take it personally! Oh - and only one follow-up email please. Two = pestering, three = inform the authorities.
What’s you biggest bugbear when it comes to dealing with unsigned bands?
Most new bands are deeply pleasant people, and they're the reason I do ANBAD. I've made great friends by meeting bands, and have few complaints, really. It's a cliché, but the really unpleasant people in music are usually on the peripheries, scrambling for a slice of the pie - the ones who talk to you but gaze over your shoulder looking for someone more 'useful'. It's a weird world and you need a thick skin - or a full understanding of its inherent absurdities.
Top tip for unsigned bands:
Remember the golden ratio: 99% good songs, 1% everything else. Work every day on the songs and the rest will fall into place. Bands with bad songs can trend on Twitter all they like, but they won't get any long-term listeners, and they're the ones who'll pay your rent.
a new band a day, music blog, unsigned bands, unsigned artists, new music