Recommendation to Artists, Labels and A&R representative

El Caobo

Son Montuno
#1
My advice to artists, labels and A&R representatives is to NEVER SEND MUSIC TO RADIO STATION ADDRESSES; at least not to college radio station addresses!

Why do I say this? Well, I've been on college radio for nearly 10 years now and at three different colleges. I've experienced the exact same situation at each of them. Within these 10 years, the combined number of cds that have been delivered to me from all three stations sadly totals less than ten! So, I always have and always will secure my own music sources and buy music for my shows.

Often, I get emails from people who have sent cds to me at the radio stations' addresses. In these emails they ask me what I thought about their music. What more can I say except the truth; which is that "I never received it?" In fact, this week alone, I received two such emails from artists asking about their music and this is why I decided to write this message. This has happened again and again and again, and keep in mind I am only aware of the times that artists or their representatives have followed up on their music. Surely, there are many more times when I never even know music was sent to me; with the end result being that the person believes I got their music and chose not to play it!

I used to bring this up with station management, but upon seeing that they were only becoming upset that I asked them about it, I stopped bothering to say anything. One thing is for sure, somebody received and kept the music!

What is interesting is that each station has had the same rationale; which is that music sent to the station belongs to the station and is for everyone. Yet, in each case, the person who ends up keeping the music does not have an audience for it, or a negligible one. They have titles such as World Music Director or International Music Director, Program Director or the "catch all "Music Director." They get the music and keep it. Only they know what they do with it, but I do know that they are not giving it the exposure that it should get, if any at all! I can imagine that in many cases, the music ends up in their home collections.

Is it that I have been unlucky to get shows at three different stations that operate this way? Perhaps. Is it that because I had my own music sources before I started with them and so they feel like I don't need any more? Again, perhaps, but that has nothing to do with giving me mail that has my name on it, nor does it have anything to do with getting the artists' music to the show that would most benefit them!

So, everywhere online, I give my address and ask that people send music directly to me. Anyone creating music and ear-marking promotional dollars to send that music to where it might find the airwaves, should take the extra step to find out who the host is that they want to place their music, get an address from that person and then send the music directly to that person. Otherwise, there is a very high probability that you are wasting your money and time!

So, once again, to artists, labels and a&r reps, my informed advice to you is to find the person you want to air your music and get an address from them. Maybe some will give the station's address, but my guess is that nearly all will not and instead will give their residence or other secure location.

If you want me to play your music during one of my shows, send it to me, at the address listed in my thread here at Salsaforums http://www.salsaforums.com/showthread.php?t=6237 and NEVER to one the station addresses!
 
#2
Thanks for the advice.

Hi. I'm an artist and I just wanted to say thanks. I don't feel I've created anything good enough for radio yet (lol) but when I do I'll keep that in mind.

Also, one thing that I wanted to recommend (or at least ask ur opinion about) is reverbnation.com. "Reverb nation" is a service that offers to put your work on Itunes, Amazon etc. for a small (only double-digits lol) fee. I haven't tried it yet since like I said I don't have anything on that level yet, but since this thread is recommendations for artists I thought I'd bring it up.

TY again,
"El Conguero"
 

El Caobo

Son Montuno
#3
Hi. I'm an artist and I just wanted to say thanks. I don't feel I've created anything good enough for radio yet (lol) but when I do I'll keep that in mind.

Also, one thing that I wanted to recommend (or at least ask ur opinion about) is reverbnation.com. "Reverb nation" is a service that offers to put your work on Itunes, Amazon etc. for a small (only double-digits lol) fee. I haven't tried it yet since like I said I don't have anything on that level yet, but since this thread is recommendations for artists I thought I'd bring it up.

TY again,
"El Conguero"
Hi Conguero!

I'm not familiar with reverbnation. I'll take a look at it though to see what it's all about. Thanks for the info!
 
#4
I once visited a college radio station a few years ago. There were cds all over the place. It was clear that there was no organization there.
 
#5
Hi. I'm an artist and I just wanted to say thanks. I don't feel I've created anything good enough for radio yet (lol) but when I do I'll keep that in mind.

Also, one thing that I wanted to recommend (or at least ask ur opinion about) is reverbnation.com. "Reverb nation" is a service that offers to put your work on Itunes, Amazon etc. for a small (only double-digits lol) fee. I haven't tried it yet since like I said I don't have anything on that level yet, but since this thread is recommendations for artists I thought I'd bring it up.

TY again,
"El Conguero"
Thanks for the recommendation, I am going to check this...
 
#8
Just to reiterate and emphasize the point, can you guess how many cds I have received from the radio station since I started this thread on July 5, 2010?

The answer is ZERO!
 
#9

I'm so happy to announce that I have been named the International/World Music Format Chief of WHPK, 88.5 fm, Chicago! Take a look at the wide-range of international/world music shows that our station has:http://www.whpk.org/shows/international/.

My first order of business is to set up a process to ensure that international/world music gets into the hands of the hosts who will better serve the artists and their labels. I will strive to prove that it can be done properly!

If you would like to explore the possibility of having your music played during one of our international shows, please use the following information. Mp3 files are preferred.

--
El Caobo
International / World Music Format Chief
WHPK, 88.5 FM, Chicago
P.O. Box 17761
Chicago, IL. 60617

international@whpk.org
Mobile: (312) 287-8763
www.whpk.org
 
#13

I'm so happy to announce that I have been named the International/World Music Format Chief of WHPK, 88.5 fm, Chicago! Take a look at the wide-range of international/world music shows that our station has:http://www.whpk.org/shows/international/.

My first order of business is to set up a process to ensure that international/world music gets into the hands of the hosts who will better serve the artists and their labels. I will strive to prove that it can be done properly!

If you would like to explore the possibility of having your music played during one of our international shows, please use the following information. Mp3 files are preferred.

--
El Caobo
International / World Music Format Chief
WHPK, 88.5 FM, Chicago
P.O. Box 17761
Chicago, IL. 60617

international@whpk.org
Mobile: (312) 287-8763
www.whpk.org

Now is a great time to post an update with how things are going!

I very few months, I have given each of the other 11 hosts in WHPK's International Format more music than I received in over 10 years and from three different college radio stations! Not only have I been giving the hosts music, but I also have put them in direct contact with the sources of the music (labels and distributors, independent artists, etcetera). I have demonstrated that it is possible to do the job correctly and I feel very good about it!

However, there are still challenges. Music goes into the radio station daily, but even with a total of 12 international shows under my "umbrella," I still only seem to get one or two cds, and sometimes none, per week. So, I have a feeling that not all the music that is sent to me, gets to me. The music that I am able to get to the hosts is the music that is sent to the international@whpk.org email address, and there is plenty of it!

In light of this, my recommendation is still that artists and labels should take the time to contact the exact hosts that they want to play their music and get their direct address, if they intend to send physical cds. If digital files are sent, I suggest sending it to the email address listed by the station and then following up with the hosts who should be playing the music. That way you will discover whether or not the music is actually be routed to the appropriate persons.
 
#15
As someone who also worked at a college radio station, I agree. Most people were good about following the policies, but there was a lot of space for stuff - and music - to fall through the cracks!
 

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