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California Hard Rockers Lucid Fly Win Free Strings From Ernie Ball

The Ernie Ball Competition on OurStage has awarded free strings to some of the hottest artists on the site, giving them that extra little push they need to keep the music coming for a whole year longer. With their ethereal vocals, driving rhythms and soaring choruses, west coast hard rockers Lucid Fly are no exception. The California quartet climbed all the way to the top of the Hard Rock Channel in March with their song “Blind,” and landed themselves a year’s supply of free strings and accessories from Ernie Ball. We recently caught up with guitarist Doug Mecca to get a little insight into their musical world, their influences and to find out what’s on the horizon for this up-and-coming act. Check out our exclusive interview below, and for more information and tunes, hit up Lucid Fly’s OurStage profile. Don’t forget that artists in the Indie Pop Channel are currently battling for the Ernie Ball grand prize, so if indie pop is your bag, go show them some love in the judging department!

OS: You guys relocated to Los Angeles from Florida a few years back, how has that change affected your fan base? Any major differences between east coast and west coast followers?

DM: Since we moved we’ve had to connect virtually (mostly online) with our fans back east while building a name as a “new” band in LA.  We’re in a much bigger city now and the diversity and numbers out here are amazing.  We were attracted to that “more of everything” that LA exemplifies and we’ve been loving that—both as artists and as music fans ourselves!! If anything we realize more the similarities—word-of-mouth is still the greatest way to find new music and to be found. We all enjoy sharing things that move us.  Every week we find new music and fans not just from the east and west coasts but also Canada, Mexico, South America, Europe, Japan, Australia… with the technology of  the web and social networks, Internet radio, podcasts and of course sites like OurStage.com that give independent bands a platform to be discovered!!

OS: You mention in your bio that as a band, you are constantly evolving. What are the next steps for Lucid Fly?

DM: We’ve been writing our next CD so we can’t wait to start recording that and then get out there to tour and perform these new songs for everyone. The new music seems to be evolving in a more dramatic way and naturally lends itself to something more visual both onstage and in video.

OS: Who are you listening to right now? Is there any band or artist in particular that’s had a noticeable impact on your writing style?

DM: We’ve been really into some amazing bands from Australia like Karnivool, Dead Letter Circus, Birds of Tokyo… there’s something going on there and we can’t get enough of whatever that is! Also bands like Katatonia and Baxter are still getting serious rotation in our playlist lately, both from Sweden incidentally.  Music from there seems to have this dark and mellow quality even when it’s heavy. Maybe it’s the cold weather and dark winter thing but we like it. Haha.

OS: How do you utilize online tools to reach new fans? What do you think are some of the most important things for bands to do to reach new audiences online?

DM: We jump on any new social network that helps us find like-minded people—especially the ones that will filter people based on their music interest.  Sites like OurStage.com, Last.fm and Jango.com play songs mixed in where there’s a good chance of overlapping tastes and we get lots of activity from those as well. The first thing we do when someone mentions an artist that we don’t know is typically go straight to one of the big social sites because we want to hear the music!  The easier it is to find and hear, the better so we try also to make our songs easy to find. We feel that just connecting with like-minded people in general, online or off, is key.  Music is meant to be shared so we believe in genuinely interacting with people because it’s rewarding, not for any motive. The more tools that make that easier, the better!

OS: What was your reaction when you found out you’d won the Grand Prize? Are there any shout-outs you’d like to make or people you’d like to thank?

DM: Woohoo!  It feels fantastic to be recognized and to know that people out there enjoy listening to our music as much as we do making it.  To be supported by Ernie Ball and OurStage is huge for us and other independent bands to be able to do this.  Everyone knows that it costs money to tour and record so a year’s worth of strings and accessories was a very welcome and appreciated surprise! A lot of people have helped us get here and continue to create and we appreciate you all!! For sure everyone who’s ever listened, downloaded or shared our music with their friends… you make this happen for us and we can’t thank you enough.  Big love to OurStage and Ernie Ball for hooking up unsigned bands like us get heard!

Lucid Fly currently plans to get back into the studio some time this year so if you like what you hear, be on the lookout for more music coming soon.

Fan Files: OurStage Fan Gets Hooked Up With Free Tickets To NMS

It all started with a tweet. These days all you need is a little social media savvy and some good luck to score free stuff on the Internet. That’s how the cookie crumbled for Becky Clawson, who scored free tickets to this year’s New Music Seminar in Los Angeles, just for liking yours truly on Facebook. “A friend had entered the sweepstakes and reposted the info on Twitter, recalls Clawson. I thought, “Nobody actually wins these things (well, I mean, of course someone does… but no one I know ever does), but what the heck. It sounded like a great opportunity and was super easy to enter.”

Just like that Clawson was entered into the New Music Seminar “Live At The Roxy” Sweepstakes on OurStage. It turns out that fortune would go on to smile on Clawson, as she was selected from among the many to be the recipient of the sweepstakes Grand Prize. Clawson attended the 2011 NMS conference in Los Angeles, and was kind enough to share her experience with us. Read on to hear more about her story, and be sure to check out the OurStage fan competition page, where you can get the scoop on more ways to snag more fan prizes from OurStage. For the NMS artist perspective, be sure to scope our interview with The Well Reds, winners of the New Music Seminar “Live At The Roxy” Competition.

OS: What was the vibe like at the New Music Seminar and The Roxy?

BC: The vibe at NMS was one of wide-eyed enthusiasm and anticipation. Many of those who attended seemed to be on a mission to complete the puzzle, so to speak. Everyone I met was eager to learn from the pros (the panelists) and discover the tools that would strengthen their product and business strategy and propel their career to new levels. At the same time, there was a real sense of camaraderie— the unspoken “we’re all here for the same reason— for the love of music; let’s support each other.”

OS: What are some of the ways that you discover new music on the Internet? Did attending the New Music Seminar give you some new places look?

BC: Pandora and Last.fm were once my primary online music discovery tools, but increasingly, Facebook has taken the lead, allowing friends to easily share audio and videos. I’d spent a bit of time browsing OurStage in the past, but after learning more about the company at Ben Campbell’s talk at the New Music Seminar, I’m eager to get involved with voting on the site to bring up-and-coming artists into the spotlight and connecting them with great opportunities and exposure.

OS: Was there a particular speaker at the seminar who stood out to you?

BC: It would be hard to pick just one speaker who topped the rest, so I’ll tell you about a couple of the moments that stood out for me.

RuPaul, while facilitating a discussion on creating one’s personal brand, asked Moby where he got his personal style. Moby, without hesitation, explained, “I grew up in a crack neighborhood. And I learned that if I dressed like I was homeless, I was less likely to get mugged.” RuPaul was totally taken off guard. The point? If your music is good, it will do the talking. Even if you look homeless.

Angela Hunte, co-writer of “Empire State of Mind”, told attendees that after the song’s success, a lot of people asked her, “So now that you know the secret (to writing a huge hit), when are you going to write the next ‘Empire State of Mind’?” or suggested, “Do that again.” But she replied, “I already did that. I’m not writing another ‘Empire State of Mind’. I’m on to the next thing —something different—something better.” And I thought, “What a different music marketplace this would be, if everyone wrote that way instead of formulating hits.” Sounds magical.

OS: Did you get to see winning OurStage band The Well Reds perform at the VIP party? What did you think of their set?

BC: I promise I’m not simply trying to tell you what you want to hear when I say that The Well Reds were my favorite act I saw at the NMS after-parties. I’m a sucker for a well-dressed rock and roll band playing original and well-written songs you can shake your hips to. No over-the-top glam. No cheese—ok, so there’s always a little cheese when singing about the heart, but it’s good cheese. Overall, just solid rock most of us soul-bearing young adults can relate to.

 


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