It’s a known fact that the most beneficial efforts are often the most difficult to achieve. In the music biz, music licensing is akin to winning the lottery. No one can dispute the benefits of having a song placed in a choice commercial for the entire world to hear (or even having a loving relationship with a music supervisor) but its definitely easier said than done. Luckily, OurStage has the chops to make these things happen for artists every day.
You don’t have to take our word for it. Just take a gander at the tons of artists on OurStage who we’ve helped to license songs in various outlets, like TV shows and commercials. One example is 3D FRIENDS who scored the theme song of MTV’s high profile series SKINS. Once a week, millions of viewers tuned in to watch dangerously attractive teens in the British remake, and in the process listened to Daniel’s track over and over. Talk about exposure.
Sometimes an artist just isn’t ready to have a music supervisor pick through their songs. We can help them prepare for that level when they enter a Premium Music Competition—and possibly win priceless sit-downs with industry pros. All Found Out is about to go out for drinks with former EVP of Sony Bruce Tyler. With Tyler’s twenty plus years experience in the biz, AFO is bound to soak up some useful nuggets. After all, its all about who you know. And you know OurStage. Let’s get started so you can join the ranks of these and more success stories.
Being a young band just starting out in the business is hard. This is a news flash to no one, and thus not the topic of this week’s Beat Generation column. But how hard must it be to get your band off the ground when no one can agree what your genre is? Or worse, if people argue that your genre isn’t real?
Chillwave (also known as hypnagogic pop or, ugh, glo-fi) is a word heavy with connotation for music nerds. A buzzy, bloggy genre which emerged in 2009 and quickly became the trendy, hip(ster) electronic genre of the moment, chillwave was, and still is, a contentious term. Many would state that it’s not even a real genre of music. If you believe the Wall Street Journal, Hipster Runoff basically invented chillwave in this blog post here. To be honest, there may be some credence to that.
It is clear that chillwave—lacking in geographic cohesion, a web-generated origin and following coupled with a very small roster of prominent artists who would fit the descriptions of the sound, let alone cop to being “chillwave” themselves—is a kind of music which needs more history, needs to be fleshed out more before it can posses a true character.
Having just said that, itlooks like 2011 is going to be a big year for those “chillwavers” or “chillwavians” or “chillwavites” (which one is correct?). We’ve seen album announcements in the past few weeks from many of the genre’s more prominent acts including upcoming releases from Neon Indian, Memory Tapes and Washed Out. However, Toro Y Moi got the first shot in when he released his sophomore effort Underneath the Pine this past Februaryto favorable reviews. It’s worth noting that there is a stylistic shift in sound between this year’s release and Chaz Bundwick’s 2010 debut Causers of This. From fractured, shimmering J Dilla-influenced productions to slinky, sly funk-pop with an awesome throwback vibe. Groovy, yes. But is it cool enough, lo-fi enough to be chillwave?
Neon Indian’s upcoming Heart Attack, slated for release this summer looks like something more like what we’ve come to expect from these musicians. A teaser clip featuring main player Alan Palomo shuffling around a snowy Helsinki gives us a taste what his new record will sound like: chilly but not chill, hazy-trippy and stylish as all get out. You can check it out for yourself below.
Washed Out made a splash (haha) last week with the announcement of mastermind Ernest Greene’s signing to Sub Pop, the release of the sexy album art for his new record Within and Without and the first track “Eyes Be Closed”. Greene’s project may have the highest stakes and be the most anticipated of all the potential chillwave releases coming up this year. He arguably had the biggest “hit” with his breakthrough track “Feel It All Around” and he’s the only major chillwave artist who hasn’t had a full length release before this year. Honestly, after hearing about his wedding many thought it might take a bit longer for Greene to crank out a proper debut. But here we are.
What’s the unifying theme here? There might be some common threads, underlying attributes that link these bands, stylistically speaking. The nostalgia, a disco influence and the hazy removal are all touchstones that these bands have in common. And we just mentioned some of the players; other prominent chillwave bands that come to mind include Small Black, MillionYoung, Teen Daze and whole slew of other bands of that ilk. Also, some OurStagers have gotten in on the chillwave movement. After all, 3D Friends, winner of the MTV “SKINS THEME SONG COMPETITION” actually describes himself as a chillwave artist. That said, is it all enough to make it a genre? Is 2011 the year of chillwave?
We don’t have the answers to those questions. But these bands are coming out with a lot of quality material in the near future. If the term chillwave isn’t good enough, I hope someone figures out something else that works. The music deserves it.
We’re sure you’ve already heard about the incredible success of the MTV “SKINS Theme Song Competition”, which gives winner 3D Friends (Daniel Chavez Wright) weekly exposure to thousands of viewers across the country. In November, MTV and OurStage gave even more artists a shot at getting featured on the show by launching the MTV “Score SKINS Music Project.” Throughout the month, artists competed for the opportunity to get their song heard by the music supervisors at MTV and then featured on SKINS during the show’s first season. And now, we are proud to announce November’s winner!
Meet Vic and Gab, a sister songwriting duo whose passions lie in making catchy indie pop/rock. The ladies caught the ears of the MTV music supervisors with their song “So Long, So Tired,” an acoustic driven ballad that champions their delicate vocals and pop sensibilities. Join us in congratulating Vic and Gab on their big win and stay tuned to the OurStage Magazine for when we interview them later in the month. Be sure to check out “So Long, So Tired” when it airs on SKINS tonight!
Monday night marked the official premiere of the US version of MTV’s teen drama SKINS. Unless you’ve been living under a rock (we forgive you), or are new to OurStage (welcome), you know that we recently ran a competition with MTV to find the perfect track to be the theme song for the new show. A couple months and thousands of songs later Daniel Chavez Wright aka 3D Friends‘ “Lina Magic” was announced the winner. Daniel was flown out to New York for the premiere of the show, where we sat down with him to hear about what this life changing opportunity has been like. The self-pronounced “chillwave” artist describes the winning track as “a tale of childhood romance and making connections in school”, a seemingly perfect fit for SKINS, which is after all, about the sometimes trying relationships of adolescence. We’re so honored to be part of Daniel’s journey as an independent artist and can’t wait to see what happens next. Remember, you can’t win an opportunity like this without entering, so get those songs out there! Check out our full interview with Daniel below.
The MTV “SKINS THEME SONG COMPETITION” launched in October, offering artists across the country a chance to have their song featured on the upcoming US adaptation of the smash UK teen drama SKINS. Daniel Chavez, also known by his moniker 3D Friends, came to OurStage with the hopes of getting his music out to some new audiences. The Austin, Texas-based songwriter considers his music a contribution to the “Chillwave” movement, comparing himself to artists such as Neon Indian and Bradford Cox.
Chavez entered his song “Lina Magic” in the MTV “SKINS THEME SONG COMPETITION” which caught the attention of the music supervisors for the show. Chavez will have his song featured as the theme song when the show debuts to national audiences in January of 2011. As a result of entering the competition on OurStage, his music will be broadcast weekly to millions of viewers nationwide. Stay tuned to MTV when Chavez’s winning song “Lina Magic” debuts on SKINS in January 2011. To hear the winning song now, or listen to more music from 3D Friends, head to Chavez’s OurStage profile HERE.