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Archive 9

October 21, 2003

I’m listening to Austin, Texas girl Ainjel Emme. She’s a bit like Liz Phair, Dido and Tori. I admire her dry, rhythmic mantras. Visit her site, click listen and then “Easier” (www.ainjelemme.net). I still favor Tracy, California’s Megan Slankard with her Suzanne Vega meets No Doubt cut “Mockingbird”. I heard she met up with W.F. Leopold Management (Maroon 5, Melissa Etheridge). From a publishing standpoint LA act The Better Days (featuring Rob Bonfiglio–formerly of RCA act Wanderlust and hitched to Carnie Wilson I think) is pretty good. It’s equal parts Barenaked Ladies, Oasis and Alanis, try “Shine” (www.thebetterdays.com). If you’re looking for a 22 second hard rock TV trailer try this by LA’s Numira “Sky High” (www.numira.net).

Demo-ralized
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

My Continued Beef with New York’s WNEW Blink 102.7 FM

Maybe you didn’t hear me the first time, the city is locked for adult contemporary (AC) music. I can’t imagine how much Viacom/Infinity is shelling out for market share in Blink’s case. I don’t doubt the execs go on and on saying research indicates they need to change the gameplan. Nonsense. No new AC will work. WPLJ corners Hot AC and the reigning WLTW corners Lite AC. In my opinion, even trying to re-introduce Modern AC is no threat to NYC’s lineup. The average listener doesn’t distinguish between a true Modern AC and WPLJ. That’s been established. To date, Blink is trying to go left of WLTW and right of WPLJ. For the love of god, there is no such pocket. Blink should accept the fact that local malls, mini-vans, medical offices, elevators and mommys don’t need another soundtrack. Running TV commercials for exposure won’t work even if you have the advantage of cross promotion with a sister Viacom outlet such as WCBS-TV. Clear Channel’s WLTW is the only one of the new AC triangle that doesn’t have a sister TV station to utilize (Disney/ABC is the parent to both WPLJ and WABC-TV). In the last 3 weeks, to compete with Blink’s campaign, WLTW and WPLJ have stepped up their TV spots in order to clinch market share once again. Recently Blink hired one Smokey Rivers as PD (KEZK, KYKY St. Louis, KIOI San Francisco). Corporate propaganda in the trade Radio Ink reads “VP/GM Maire Mason commented, ‘Smokey has achieved great success and recognition during his 10 year tenure and is a tremendous asset to Infinity Broadcasting. With his keen insight into the Adult Contemporary format, he’s clearly the best programming executive to lead the station to the next level.’ ” How about he’ll be a patsy and still come out clean. Why? Because he’s a veteran PD who will always have a home with the company even if he doesn’t succeed in a top 10 market. What exactly is this “keen insight”? Having some whipping boy manipulate Selector software to list as many Billy Joel cuts possible in a given day-part? This past summer Blink was #24 out of 31 stations in NYC–essentially the lowest rated FM station on the block. I too fear Infinity will get the Country itch, already spinning are crossovers the Dixie Chicks and Faith Hill.

New Records:
Kid Rock’s new single is a cover of Bad Company’s “Feel Like Makin Love” (1975). Originally released on the LP “Straight Shooter” in April 1975. The album went gold in a month’s time. Who else has covered this track? Pop punkers Goldfinger in 1999. But wait…Eugene McDaniels also wrote a song by the same title prior to Bad Company, and hell, he got it covered by Roberta Flack (1974), George Benson and D’Angelo. And of course Mary J. Blige wrote a “Feel Like Makin’ Love” cut but it’s not so good. Oh well.

October 15, 2003

Still listening to The Adored out of St. Louis. They’re like Bush, Nirvana but also do the Goo Goo Dolls, Puddle of Mudd thing. Try the track “Disappear” (contact is theadored@charter.net, http://www.theadored.net). Toronto’s Howie Beck returns with a new CD with the help of friends like Ed Harcourt and Hayden. It’s a low lying, smooth feel similar to Freedy Johnston and Elliot Smith. Try “Sometimes” (www.howiebeck.com). Demo Diaries act Wake comes to LA for a showcase at the Viper Room 10/17 8PM. The band picks up big lawyer Jeff Light. Demo Diaries act Dan Goddard said to be playing for Atlantic and Throback/Lava. Demo Diaries act Mondoz signs on with manager John Lenac (of HITS magazine).

Signed Bests:
Richard Ashcroft’s “God in the Numbers” on CBS’s “Joan of Arcadia”
Pete Yorn’s “Crystal Village” on FOX’s “Skin” trailers.
Alicia Keys’ new single “You Don’t Know My Name”. This is a great track. The retro quality is brilliant.

Demo-ralized
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

Bloody hell, it’s now popular to cover songs from 1984. You have No Doubt doing Talk Talk’s “It’s My Life”, The Ataris doing Don Henley’s “The Boys of Summer” (incidentally I did not know the song was co-written by Mike Campbell of T. Petty and The Heartbreakers). Hm…I guess that’s it. What about Limp Bizkit with The Who’s “Behind Blue Eyes” (1971). Did you ever listen to the album “Who’s Next”? Why’d it take 10 months for this album to go gold back then. I love “Baba O’Riley”, still.

Puddle of Mudd vs P.O.D., The Finer Points of Songwriting

Puddle of Mudd “Away From Me” chorus: I’m always afraid that you’re gone away from me/I’m always afraid that you’re lost in somebody/ I’m always afraid that you’re gone away from me/I’m always afraid that you’re lost in somebody

P.O.D. “Will You” chorus: Will you, will you love me tomorrow/So will you, will you stay with me today/Will you, will you be here tomorrow/So will you, you remember yesterday

October 8, 2003

Demo-ralized
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

A Mid-life Comparison, Madonna Ciccone vs. Love Michelle Harrison (aka Courtney Love)

So let’s see, you never really know the true ages of celebrities and even moreso female celebrities. They’re doubly protective. Madonna was 39 in or around 1997. Some of her known experiences back then include the following: The making of “Ray of Light”, the raising of her new daughter, the exploration into Kabbalah, practicing yoga, winning a Golden Globe and peforming in the miserable Guy Ritchie failure “Swept Away”.

Courtney Love is 39 at the moment. Her experiences at or around this age include: arrested for air rage on Virgin Atlantic, signing a lucrative deal with Virgin Records, apartment rage during NYC’s blackout leading to a police response and newspaper misprint, recent arrest for breaking the windows at Jim Barber’s house (apparently she owns the land), supposedly working on her next movie-the Luc Besson (Fifth Element) helmed “Miss June”. She’s also known for delving into Kabbalah (it would appear she’s falling a bit short of miracles, meditation and magic).

Lord of the Venues, Who Owns What in NYC

The live music venue circuit in NYC seems to be very tight. Following is a brief exploration into the daily players:

You have your 400-600 person venues namely Manhattan’s popular Bowery Ballroom (affiliated with the much smaller Mercury Lounge). Brooklyn’s got North Six and Warsaw to compete (these places usually get all the hip indie, emo acts as a large portion of young concert goers live in Williamsburg). As far as I know none of these venues are corporate subsidiaries. The next step in a band’s career might be the Clear Channel operated Irving Plaza (1100). Also under the Clear Channel umbrella are the Beacon Theatre (2800) and Roseland (3600). Doesn’t that pretty much give them dibs on any developing band’s career? Ah but wait…there is an alternative venue to play when you land a hit at radio. This would be Hammerstein Ballroom (3700 standing). Who owns it? That would be One-Up Enterprises which is a splinter of the Unification Church headed by Rev. Sun Myung Moon. Fascinating. Venues such as Webster Hall (1500) and The Supper Club (1000) can book big name acts but not on a regular basis these days (neither has ties to an uber corporation). I should also mention the Knitting Factory (up to 400), the troubled Bottom Line (400), world music haven S.O.B.’s (500) and B.B. King’s (1000 standing).

Once you become massive it’s time for Radio City Music Hall or even Madison Square Garden (the arena or theatre). You now Cablevision (owner of New York Knicks, New York Rangers, New York Liberty, Fuse TV) as parent to these operations. But hey, it always comes back to Clear Channel. CC promotes concerts at Central Park Summerstage, Carnegie Hall, Hammerstein and Madison Square Garden to name a few. Ticketmaster is the exclusive agent to all CC shows. CC owns the radio playlist monitoring service Mediabase. And of course Radio & Records uses Mediabase for its charts. Allow me to tangent yet again and say there is still another dubious triangle at work. The Dutch run VNU owns Billboard, BDS (the other radio playlist monitoring service) and Soundscan. To get to the point, one heavyweight publication is solely influenced by Clear Channel reports and the other uses its sister company exclusively. I didn’t know synergy could be so creepy.

I believe author William Gibson once noted that in modern times major societal institutions consume smaller bohemias even before they fully develop. Acquisitions, mergers, business development, maybe it’s all not to be taken so seriously. These are all characteristics of a capitalist system love it or hate it. On the flip side, history shows that these very same institutions over-consume, hit bankruptcy and are sold off in parts like scrap iron from a shipyard. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly Dave Matthews said “Clear Channel can’t last forever because it’s too fat to hold itself up. Things will start popping up around it that are more fun. It can’t last, I don’t care how big it is.” Earlier this year CC chairman Lowry Mays went before the Senate saying “Clear Channel’s 1,200 radio stations represent only 9 percent of all the stations in the country…live entertainment accounts for less than 7 percent of Clear Channel’s revenue.” What to make of all this? Well, it’s probably the biggest cities that are stacked in Clear Channel’s (and Infinity’s) favor and THAT’s what rubs folks the wrong way.

Most eloquent quote found on the internet: “Radio was crap before Clear Channel and it is still crap after Clear Channel. The only difference is that Clear Channel bought a whole lot of crap.”

Tacky News Item: Coldplay’s Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow seen rendezvousing on the University of Chicago campus October 7. Paltrow is reportedly shooting her new film there.

Records coming out or on the shelves:

Dido “White Flag”–Don’t you just want her to go into the “Here With Me” chorus instead?
Sarah McLachlan “Fallen”–This is neither here nor there.
Blink 182 “Feeling This”–Again, it’s like McDonalds, you know what you’re getting. Do any of these acts really warrant a review?
The Fire Theft “Chain”–Wow, now here’s a good one. Made up of ex-Sunny Day Real Estate, fans of the former will notice a change in style.
Mandy Moore “Senses Working Over Time”–I imagine the conversation between Andy Partridge and manager, “Hey mate, Mandy Moore’s covering your tune”, Partridge: “Who?”
Default “My Life Away”–Oh the humanity.
Hoobastank “Out of Control”–No comment, just read the chorus: “Where should I go/What should I do/I don’t understand what you want from me/Cause I don’t know if I can trust you/I don’t understand what you want from me.
Distillers “Drain the Blood”-Yawn.
Living Colour “Sacred Ground”–God awful.
Queensryche “Losing Myself”–Oh hell, Living Colour, Queensryche and Morrissey all going through Sanctuary now? This could make a good live bill.
Travis “Re-offender”–The whole CD is a bit disappointing, I guess they’re not gonna break the 280,000 mark in the U.S.

November 24, 2003

I’ve listened repeatedly to the recently completed 11 song CD by 20 year old newcomer Nicolas Johansen. A Canadian with Brit sensibility doing American choruses. Lush, melodic hooks. Produced by Leslie Howe whose credits include Artificial Joy Club and Alanis Morissette. Well done. See the DVD music video for sure. No big lawyer yet. I definitely recommend chatting with Leslie about it as he’s in Los Angeles, leslie@madcowmusic.com, 818 383 4839.

November 12, 2003

Unsigned stuff that makes me think twice: Chicago act A.D.D. fronted by blonde rocker Margaret Young. Androgenous vocals. I like this classic metal approach they’re onto. I think I’ll trade in my Coldplay t-shirt for a pentagram. No lawyer yet for them, try “Maybe” (www.add40.com). LA’s Fractional returns with new demos by producers John Travis and Patrick McDowell. Sounds like Hoobastank, no manager as of now, try “What You Need” (www.fractionalmusic.com). NYC based Brit girl Shelley Harland often collaborates with Delerium and Junkie XL among others. On her latest solo CD she’s a bit like Leigh Nash (Sixpence None The Richer), Tori Amos, Aimee Mann. Try a clip from “Treehouse” (www.harlandmusic.com/audio.html). I still like burgeoning LA songstress Adrianne as her style varies from Alanis to Shawn Colvin to Ani DiFranco to Bob Dylan. No manager yet, try “Bring Me You” (www.adrimusic.com). Birmingham UK act Casino returns with new demos.

The Business of Music Magazines, Who Owns Them?
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

Several publications fall under corporate umbrellas as you’d expect. On the American front, Wenner Media owns Rolling Stone, Miller Publishing Group has Spin and Vibe, Primedia controls Electronic Musician and MIX, Highbury House Communications does DJ Magazine. Considered a trade but all over consumer shelves as well is of course VNU’s (Dutch) Billboard. Perhaps you’ll be surprised to know that the painfully lauded UK weekly NME falls under IPC Media which in turn is owned by U.S. giant Time Warner. Also under IPC/Time Warner are Uncut and The Guitar Magazine. In almost contesting fashion, Brit helmed Future Network publishing now possesses a string of American born mags such as Guitar World, Guitar One (sold for 2.5 mil by Cherry Lane Music Group who’s reportedly acquiring Dreamworks Music Publishing in its entirety) and Revolver. Emap (UK) harbors Q Magazine, Mojo, Mixmag, Kerrang and Smash Hits. Dennis Publishing (UK) proudly brings us more boobs, less tunes via the disasterously successful Blender, Maxim and Stuff. A handful of independently owned music mags still circulate throughout the world including Irish fave Hot Press, offbeat Brit rag The Wire and U.S. mainstays like Alternative Press, Source, No Depression, Performing Songwriter, Magnet and URB.

November 3, 2003

New York area hipsters Shamra continue to turn heads with their Liz Phair, Pretenders sound. Fans include Sony Pictures Television, several CMJ reporters and AOL First Break. No lawyer or manager yet, try “Cutest” or “Hand Stamp” (www.shamramusic.com). Atlanta’s Honestly is decent music for television shows. You might remember them as Mary’s Eyes. Latest CD co-produced by engineer/mixer Daniel Mendez (Heart, Lit, Dakona). It’s very Goo Goo Dolls, Matchbox Twenty, Third Eye Blind. They use Eric Godtland Management (Third Eye Blind) and legal Reid Hunter, try “Nine ‘Till Midnight” (www.honestlyband.com). Under the watchful eye of Mosaic Media, former Tom Waits nanny Jesca Hoop hit #1 most requested on KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic in past weeks, try the slightly offbeat demo Seeds of Wonder clocking in at 5:58. Also gaining interest in LA is ex-Mousekateer turned Latin pop/hip-hop Ricky Luna. Folks from the Sony, Warner, Interscope, EMI families are on the tip. On 11/9 he plays on a charity bill for 7000 people at Pierce College Stadium in Woodland Hills (www.momentummanagement.com).

Favorite Song Placement: Paloalto’s “Breathe In” on “Boston Public” and “The OC” trailer.

The Cure vs. The Smiths
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

Who’s covered them live or on record?

Cure: Tori Amos, Matchbox 20, A Perfect Circle, Smashing Pumpkins, No Doubt, The Ataris, Counting Crows, Red Hot Chili Peppers, AFI, Dinosaur Jr., Stabbing Westward, Oleander, Snake River Conspiracy, Luka Bloom, Idlewild, Tuscadero, Professional Murder Music, Reel Big Fish, Goldfinger, Get Up Kids, Alkaline Trio, Deadsy, Face to Face, Jack Off Jill, Jawbox, The Living End, Luna, Kill Switch Klick

Smiths: Jeff Buckley, David Bowie, Billy Bragg, J. Mascis, Pete Yorn, Bryan Ferry, Hootie & The Blowfish, Everclear, Deftones, t.a.T.u., 10,000 Maniacs, Chrissie Hynde/Pretenders, Chumbawamba, Snake River Conspiracy, Muse, Duncan Sheik, Placebo, Love Spit Love, Anthrax, Supergrass, Ocean Blue, Trashcan Sinatras, Soho, Neil Finn, Low, Eddi Reader, Josh Rouse, Dramarama, Carter USM, Dream Academy, Death Cab For Cutie, Mr. T Experience, Face to Face, Sense Field, Boo Radleys, Third Eye Blind, Sloan, James, Bis, Belle & Sebastian, Bobby Bare Jr., Martin Newell, Sean Patrick Flanery, Jejune, Sandie Shaw, Treepeople, Braid

October 27, 2003

I wrote up Las Vegas act The Killers on May 27, 2003 in Demo Diaries. Now exactly 5 months later I hear they signed to Island. I did like them in a Cure, Big Country, Cars, Talking Heads, 80s UK kind of way. Overseas, Brit radio man Steve Lamacq went on to play them as did XFM. I believe Braden Merrick manages them. I posted one of his bands in April 1998. They were called Brando. At the time, A&R Nanci Walker (Pete Yorn, Cypress Hill) found ’em through me and fancied. She was at Columbia then. Anyhow, Brando never got signed. Nanci later went to Island but I heard she departed just recently. What’s my point? I don’t have one really. Or maybe it’s that six degrees of separation thing–especially in the music industry. If The Killers are in fact signed, A&R Rob Stevenson is their guy. My only question about the band is what if they dehydrate from contemporary production standards? This is them before:

“Mr. Brightside”
“On Top”
“Jenny”

I revisited Detroit’s Even The Odd as they’ve yet to release a debut LP. Singer Ben sounds like a freak. It’s a mainstream Nirvana thing produced by Daniel Wise (Joan Osborne), try the outtro to “My Own”

25 Years, Rock Suicide
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

When looked at collectively, this is all very unseemly:

Donny Hathaway – jumping – 1979
Ian Curtis of Joy Division – hanging – 1980
Darby Crash of The Germs – heroin (apparent suicidal dose) – 1980
Tom Evans of Badfinger – hanging – 1983
Richard Manuel of The Band – hanging apparently – 1986
Joel Rundell of Better Than Ezra – 1990
Douglas Hopkins of Gin Blossoms – gunshot – 1993
Jeff Ward (Ministry, NIN) – carbon monoxide – 1993
Kurt Cobain – gunshot – 1994
Chris Acland of Lush – 1996
Jim Ellison of Material Issue – moped carbon monoxide – 1996
Jason Thirsk of Pennywise – gunshot – 1996
Matthew Fletcher of Heavenly – 1996
Michael Hutchence of INXS – hanging – 1997
Wendy O. Williams (The Plasmatics) – gunshot – 1998
William Tucker (Ministry, Pigface) – throat slitting, pills – 1999
Kevin Wilkinson of Squeeze – hanging – 1999
Jon Lee of Feeder – hanging – 2002
(Matthew Jay falls from window 2003, not ruled suicide)

December 10, 2003

“She” by Toronto act Round 2. Modern-classic rock with guitar chops, Paul McCartney influence. New lawyer aboard in Chris Taylor. TV/film ready.
“Face Down” by Montreal act Pacer. Good middle eight section with its whistling, Celtic-like Rage Against The Machine guitar.
“My Dumb Luck” by Morgantown, West Virginia act The Argument. For Beatles, Fastball, Coldplay fans. New demo produced by Ted Comerford/mixed by Paul David Hager.
“Turn” by Newcastle, UK act V7. Anticipated 2004 buzz.

December 4, 2003

This week try Albany, NY act Wetwerks with”Brave for Me”. Vaguely similar to Filter, System of a Down. Lead vocal needs to be fleshed out. This title is self-produced but they’ve worked with Ray Dileo (Filter) in past. Gladewater, TX act Junior with “Stand Up and Holler”. Power pop, punk akin to Sum 41 or Blink 182. They’re friends with Bowling for Soup. Newcastle, UK act V7 with “Millionaire”. Ages 17-23. I could swear this sounds like Spandau Ballet meets Foo Fighters. Last I heard they were supposed to hit the studio with Mark Jones (Peter Gabriel, Black Grape).

November 24, 2003

I’ve listened repeatedly to the recently completed 11 song CD by 20 year old newcomer Nicolas Johansen. A Canadian with Brit sensibility doing American choruses. Lush, melodic hooks. Produced by Leslie Howe whose credits include Artificial Joy Club and Alanis Morissette. Well done. See the DVD music video for sure. No big lawyer yet. I definitely recommend chatting with Leslie about it as he’s in Los Angeles, leslie@madcowmusic.com, 818 383 4839.

November 12, 2003

Unsigned stuff that makes me think twice: Chicago act A.D.D. fronted by blonde rocker Margaret Young. Androgenous vocals. I like this classic metal approach they’re onto. I think I’ll trade in my Coldplay t-shirt for a pentagram. No lawyer yet for them, try “Maybe” (www.add40.com). LA’s Fractional returns with new demos by producers John Travis and Patrick McDowell. Sounds like Hoobastank, no manager as of now, try “What You Need” (www.fractionalmusic.com). NYC based Brit girl Shelley Harland often collaborates with Delerium and Junkie XL among others. On her latest solo CD she’s a bit like Leigh Nash (Sixpence None The Richer), Tori Amos, Aimee Mann. Try a clip from “Treehouse” (www.harlandmusic.com/audio.html). I still like burgeoning LA songstress Adrianne as her style varies from Alanis to Shawn Colvin to Ani DiFranco to Bob Dylan. No manager yet, try “Bring Me You” (www.adrimusic.com). Birmingham UK act Casino returns with new demos.

The Business of Music Magazines, Who Owns Them?
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

Several publications fall under corporate umbrellas as you’d expect. On the American front, Wenner Media owns Rolling Stone, Miller Publishing Group has Spin and Vibe, Primedia controls Electronic Musician and MIX, Highbury House Communications does DJ Magazine. Considered a trade but all over consumer shelves as well is of course VNU’s (Dutch) Billboard. Perhaps you’ll be surprised to know that the painfully lauded UK weekly NME falls under IPC Media which in turn is owned by U.S. giant Time Warner. Also under IPC/Time Warner are Uncut and The Guitar Magazine. In almost contesting fashion, Brit helmed Future Network publishing now possesses a string of American born mags such as Guitar World, Guitar One (sold for 2.5 mil by Cherry Lane Music Group who’s reportedly acquiring Dreamworks Music Publishing in its entirety) and Revolver. Emap (UK) harbors Q Magazine, Mojo, Mixmag, Kerrang and Smash Hits. Dennis Publishing (UK) proudly brings us more boobs, less tunes via the disasterously successful Blender, Maxim and Stuff. A handful of independently owned music mags still circulate throughout the world including Irish fave Hot Press, offbeat Brit rag The Wire and U.S. mainstays like Alternative Press, Source, No Depression, Performing Songwriter, Magnet and URB.

November 3, 2003

New York area hipsters Shamra continue to turn heads with their Liz Phair, Pretenders sound. Fans include Sony Pictures Television, several CMJ reporters and AOL First Break. No lawyer or manager yet, try “Cutest” or “Hand Stamp” (www.shamramusic.com). Atlanta’s Honestly is decent music for television shows. You might remember them as Mary’s Eyes. Latest CD co-produced by engineer/mixer Daniel Mendez (Heart, Lit, Dakona). It’s very Goo Goo Dolls, Matchbox Twenty, Third Eye Blind. They use Eric Godtland Management (Third Eye Blind) and legal Reid Hunter, try “Nine ‘Till Midnight” (www.honestlyband.com). Under the watchful eye of Mosaic Media, former Tom Waits nanny Jesca Hoop hit #1 most requested on KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic in past weeks, try the slightly offbeat demo Seeds of Wonder clocking in at 5:58. Also gaining interest in LA is ex-Mousekateer turned Latin pop/hip-hop Ricky Luna. Folks from the Sony, Warner, Interscope, EMI families are on the tip. On 11/9 he plays on a charity bill for 7000 people at Pierce College Stadium in Woodland Hills (www.momentummanagement.com).

Favorite Song Placement: Paloalto’s “Breathe In” on “Boston Public” and “The OC” trailer.

The Cure vs. The Smiths
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)

Who’s covered them live or on record?

Cure: Tori Amos, Matchbox 20, A Perfect Circle, Smashing Pumpkins, No Doubt, The Ataris, Counting Crows, Red Hot Chili Peppers, AFI, Dinosaur Jr., Stabbing Westward, Oleander, Snake River Conspiracy, Luka Bloom, Idlewild, Tuscadero, Professional Murder Music, Reel Big Fish, Goldfinger, Get Up Kids, Alkaline Trio, Deadsy, Face to Face, Jack Off Jill, Jawbox, The Living End, Luna, Kill Switch Klick

Smiths: Jeff Buckley, David Bowie, Billy Bragg, J. Mascis, Pete Yorn, Bryan Ferry, Hootie & The Blowfish, Everclear, Deftones, t.a.T.u., 10,000 Maniacs, Chrissie Hynde/Pretenders, Chumbawamba, Snake River Conspiracy, Muse, Duncan Sheik, Placebo, Love Spit Love, Anthrax, Supergrass, Ocean Blue, Trashcan Sinatras, Soho, Neil Finn, Low, Eddi Reader, Josh Rouse, Dramarama, Carter USM, Dream Academy, Death Cab For Cutie, Mr. T Experience, Face to Face, Sense Field, Boo Radleys, Third Eye Blind, Sloan, James, Bis, Belle & Sebastian, Bobby Bare Jr., Martin Newell, Sean Patrick Flanery, Jejune, Sandie Shaw, Treepeople, Braid

October 27, 2003

I wrote up Las Vegas act The Killers on May 27, 2003 in Demo Diaries. Now exactly 5 months later I hear they signed to Island. I did like them in a Cure, Big Country, Cars, Talking Heads, 80s UK kind of way. Overseas, Brit radio man Steve Lamacq went on to play them as did XFM. I believe Braden Merrick manages them. I posted one of his bands in April 1998. They were called Brando. At the time, A&R Nanci Walker (Pete Yorn, Cypress Hill) found ’em through me and fancied. She was at Columbia then. Anyhow, Brando never got signed. Nanci later went to Island but I heard she departed just recently. What’s my point? I don’t have one really. Or maybe it’s that six degrees of separation thing–especially in the music industry. If The Killers are in fact signed, A&R Rob Stevenson is their guy. My only question about the band is what if they dehydrate from contemporary production standards? This is them before:

“Mr. Brightside”
“On Top”
“Jenny”

I revisited Detroit’s Even The Odd as they’ve yet to release a debut LP. Singer Ben sounds like a freak. It’s a mainstream Nirvana thing produced by Daniel Wise (Joan Osborne), try the outtro to “My Own”

December 17, 2003

“Sameway” by NYC’s Amy Atchley. Produced by Steve Walsh (Erasure). For fans of Austin, Texas flavor with some Aimee Mann, Tori, Beatles in there.
“Burn it Down” by LA’s Josh Fix. Billy Joel meets Gavid DeGraw.
“All the Pretty Pennies” by NYC’s Blend Engine. Produced by David Bendeth (Vertical Horizon etc). I’ve covered them already. You should see singer Kat perform live.
“Always in Love” by Missouri youngsters Happy Endings. Demo produced by Jim Wirt (Incubus, Hoobastank, Live).

January 22, 2004

DFive9 from Portland, Oregon. Sylvia Massey (Tool) produced. For fans of Disturbed, System of a Down, Rage Against The Machine. Click song Charlton Heston

January 16, 2004

Norwich UK group Cord has buzz due to BBC Radio championing them. Played to labels last week in London. Expect Coldplay, Radiohead, Elbow in their sound. Click: Give Me Today

January 15, 2004

Gilby Sounds Off Thursday 11am
by Gilby N. (gilbygilbo@yahoo.com)
Granted: I got my start because of nepotism. Granted: music industry policy is often last hired, first fired. And so it goes..Vonnegut would say. Just moments ago I heard a pretty nasty rumor about the future of WMG. I’ll be damned if I’m the messenger on this developing story. I can say that the guillotine has been raised; the blade heavy. Never in all my years as a benchwarmer in the music business have I seen such a flurry of activity in such a short period of time. Somehow it’s like little math equations from your 10th grade algebra book all leading to industry apocalypse. One day a president or CEO, the next an out of work multi-millionaire looking for his/her next megalomaniacal conquest at the expense of several talented worker bees, songwriters and artists. It’s both brilliant and debilitating. I myself considered signing this new band featuring all the recent former label chiefs/execs. Artwork: severed heads of said folks above. I did more research only to find that the band name most suited for this outfit is already taken: And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead (insert here snare drum and symbol crash following joke or that sound on “The Price is Right” gameshow when the contestant loses).

Anyhow, back to the math equations. Universal Music Group minus MCA plus or minus Geffen (reinstated under IGA but er…what? Is it a point to make brands confusing to industry, artists, music fans? Keep logos on records even though company isn’t a stand alone anymore? Nostalgia’s sake) plus 100% of Dreamworks. How come many of the label accountants/financial officers and lawyers aren’t required to show their work–especially the long division? And for instance, does anyone actually know what Universal’s money books look like, if there even are any books, if there’s cross collateralization and what profit margins are expected after drastic change? Where does all the revenue from each “label” actually go every quarter? In 2004, is there really any distinct personality to each faux division/pseudo logo (Island, Universal proper, IGA/newly acquired MCA and Dreamworks thingy etc)–so then what’s the point of having divisions? To spur competition?

Let me tell you something from firsthand experience: It’s all smoke and mirrors, fluff, feathers in the cap, back patting, favoritism, luck, salesmanship, legal extortion (if there is such a thing), stealing thunder, bad taste, supply and demand and good looks. Yes, there is conflict in any industry as is evident with pro athletics and all the head coach changes. But what differs between sports and music is that…hm….well…not much. Nevermind that tangent. It’s all about leadership and rosters my friends and on that note I’ve completely lost my train of thought. I should just end this with a sentiment from a Woody Allen movie: “Well ya know, it’s like anything else”.

January 13, 2004

25 in 2004: The Brits, French and Aussies are Coming…

1. Morrissey. Scheduled for April release.
2. Richard Ashcroft. Always anticipated.
3. Starsailor. Surprisingly pleasant follow up to debut. Try “Born Again”.
4. Razorlight. “Stumble and Fall” is good. A bit more melodic than Strokes and White Stripes. Also try 1980s San Fran group Wire Train (415 Records).
5. Keane. If ever there was a band under pressure…
6. Badly Drawn Boy
7. Zero 7. Follow up to lauded debut. Great music for Sunday mornings.
8. Gomez. I think I like one song in their repetoire. Rachel Yamagata touring with them.
9. The Music
10. Elbow. Again, good for Sunday. “Fugitive Motel” and “Not a Job” are decent.
11. Dizzee Rascal. He frightens me. Try “Fix Up, Look Sharp”.
12. Snow Patrol “Grazed Knees”. I really like this one…so would Death Cab For Cutie fans. 2003 leftover.
13. The Coral. People seem to love them.
14. Longview “Further”. Right up my alley…soaring melodies stamped with hollow guitars and too much reverb. 2003 leftover.
15. Stereolab
16. Haven. Johnny Marr back as producer.
17. The Vines. “Fuck the World” is one of their new songs. I reckon they’ve matured.
18. The Church. Still cashing royalty checks for “Under the Milky Way” which I think almost got used in the VW ad featuring Nick Drake. Oh well.
19. Air. Again, rent French movies from the 60s while you’re at it.
20. Bjork. Am I the only one who couldn’t stand “Dancer in the Dark” or for that matter an unrelated “Chicago”. Anyhow, her music is generally unique and lovable. Amen.
21. Clinic. Picking up speed yet nobody’s heard of them.
22. Feeder. Well done.
23. The Streets. Oddballs always get attention.
24. The Datsuns. New Zealand’s finest. CD produced by John Paul Jones. Oh my…
25. Manic Street Preachers. Band member Richey Edwards disappeared in 1995 but supposedly has been spotted in exotic locations.

January 9, 2004

So the reformation of commercial radio is now on I hear? Not really, but it makes for good headlines. Clear Channel (of all companies) leads the charge to make #2 market LA’s KDLD/KDLE more “indie”. The moniker reads “Indie 103.1”. Beware, it’s more indie in spirit than playlist (although there are some indie label artists in there). I think it’s more about “hip”song selections/retro/fave album cuts rather than record company affiliation. Here’s a sample of what was on Jan. 9 afternoon:

Oasis
The Cure “Birdmad Girl” (1984)
NOFX
Radiohead
Buzzcocks
REM
The Verve “Sonnet”
Beastie Boys
The Pixies
Elvis Costello
Soundgarden “Jesus Christ Pose” (1991)
Bright Eyes (Saddle Creek Records)
P.O.D.
The Replacements
Bob Marley
Pearl Jam
Red Hot Chili Peppers
The Postal Service (Sub Pop Records)
B-52s
Sugarcubes
Gary Jules “Mad World” (Tears for Fears cover)

To invade non commercial KCRW’s audience it’ll have to step up with more “beat” tracks such as Lamb, Sneaker Pimps, Air etc. WDST in Woodstock, New York has been up to “indie” for years now albeit less guitar rock driven. WOXY in Ohio is another choice as well. Heard about the “classic alternative” format? It promises to take over Atlanta (99X) and Seattle stations among others. This means less hard rock (nu-metal) and more modern rock “gold 90s”. Basically modern rock and mainstream rock outlets are again defining themselves as different formats. Watch and see what KROQ in LA does as it was a seminal broadcaster of new wave/modern/alternative (along with former WLIR/WDRE Long Island/NYC 92.7 which has gone Spanish).

I adore this phone message left by Ryan Adams for writer Jim DeRogatis. Is there empathy to be found here? What fun is a rock star without the frequent tirade on or off stage. I believe Ryan Adams has some anti-Wilco sentiments to offer. I agree with him if he did in fact say that the Wilco documentary was less than captivating. It took me 3 days to watch it. On an unrelated note I think DeRogatis once mentioned Demo Diaries in an article he wrote. Click link: Ryan Adams

The Rick Beato produced and unsigned Skintight are now added at commercial WAVF Charleston, SC. 20 year old female singer with 80s vibe. Johnny Diamond Management. Click to hear song: “Favorite Nothing”

January 7, 2004

Drop Six “Coincidence”, Seattle (loud rock produced by Geoff Ott)
AllRise “I Become the Sky”, Los Angeles (Peter Gabriel like vocals)
Table Top Poets “Rumor of War”, Baltimore (not unlike Pearl Jam)
The Underwater “Bring Me You”, York PA. 6000 CDs sold (not unlike Incubus)
Hear clips of them all, click: “4 Band-Sampler MP3”

Ottawa’s Nicolas Johansen working on new demos. Not unlike Oasis, Coldplay. In the meantime:
“Nicolas Johansen Clips”

St. Louis’ Neptune Crush hit the studio with Jeff Tomei (Smashing Pumpkins) recently:
“A New Beginning”

Kingston, NY’s Joey Eppard. Ani DiFranco, Jeffrey Gaines meets R&B thing going on.
“Balloon”

NYC’s Morningwood hit the studio with Jack Douglas (Aerosmith). I will say one thing, everyone in NY knows who they are.

Philly’s Blue Collar PA hit the studio with Jared Kotler (Marcy Playground). Also see Jared on A&E channel’s “House of Dreams” Monday nights.

Favorite Signed Single This Week:
“Comfort in Sound” by Feeder (Echo Records). For fans of U2, Coldplay, The Verve. Also see their past single “High”. I did not know this band could pull 5000 to UK shows. Holy shite.

6th anniversary: Demo Diaries extends a big thank you to its list of readers worldwide. Cheers.

April 2, 2004

Gilby Sounds Off
by Gilby Nostrada (guest writer)

Shouldn’t record companies and whiney journalists spend more time locating and acquiring new music talent? This in turn would mean less time bickering about political infrastructure or how said music will be distributed. What I am reading about everywhere is hirings and firings. What I’m not reading about everywhere is the next generation of artists.
Perseverence (read promotion) plus luck = moderate success. Perseverance plus luck plus innate talent = star. Why do publicists control the media? Why do music biz patriarchs say obvious things like “the industry is in turmoil, we need more artist like x, y, z”. And why do music trade magazines go and print that quote? Here’s a quote for trades: “the sky is blue”. Why are music biz columns so kiss-assy? Oh the conundrums. The agony…

March 30, 2004

Ocean City, Maryland’s Lennex has gotten much better now. An improvement from their first release. Signed on with Gold Mountain Entertainment. A bit like Soundgarden, Deftones, Sevendust. They play LA at Viper Room 4/8 at 9:30. Try the new demo “No Better Time”.

Boston’s Nathan Duprey has some appeal. I quite like his timbre. He could use a producer to push his vocals to the next level. Total adult contemporary sound as in Tori, Rufus Wainwright or Josh Groban. Try “The Colors Red”.

March 28, 2004

Major Label Equations:

Arista
Dreamworks
MCA
Elektra/Atlantic label
A future Sony + BMG = Columbia/Epic label, RCA/J/Arista label, Zomba/Jive

March 25, 2004

I covered Dallas’ The Broadcast almost a year ago in April 2003. News demos now. Sorta like Third Eye Blind or Nine Days trying to do the early 90s goes 80s. Try “Breakdown”.

News:
South Carolina’s Quench reports “[Ryans War] is getting awesome phones [on WYBB] and we’ve sold over 1300 discs in 2 weeks”.107.1 The Peak will be greater NYC’s new Triple A commercial station (WXPK). The website isn’t launched yet. The slogan is said to be “We Don’t Just Play Hits, We Play Careers!”

March 24, 2004

Uturn from Chelmsford, UK. I have a feeling these good looking 23 year olds will impact the scene in an XTC, Blur kind of way. They’ve just begun. No manager or lawyer yet. Try “Here Comes The New Love”.

I heard San Francisco’s High Water Rising is resurfacing and will showcase for Epic, Atlantic etc this week. I turned labels onto them a couple of years ago. Eric Valentine re-produced them. Still a bit like Wallflowers, Counting Crows, Duncan Sheik. Listen to what he did: “Wasted Days”.

i is based in Boston. Like Disturbed, Tool. Anthony Resta produced it. Lots of support from WGIR-FM. No manager or lawyer yet. Try “Mary”.

News:
I still think all the indie posts I do eventually get signed somewhere credible. Take for instance Charlie Mars who I posted 5 years ago November 29, 1999. His fourth CD is due out on V2 this spring. What about Wan Santo Condo posted in D. Diaries July 10, 2000? They ended up on Everloving Records (Joseph Arthur, Jack Johnson, Donnie Darko). Hudson River School posted forever ago is doing some single deal with Sony I think. Graham Colton (profiled May 22, 2002 in D. Diaries) does the major label debut thing this spring.

Favorite Signed UK Band of the Moment:
South with their song “Colours in Waves”. Well done. Producer Dave Eringa, engineer Sean Genockey.

March 16, 2004

NYC’s Benzos. Shoddy recording but still interesting in a Jeff Buckley goes beats kind of way. They buzz a little here and hooked up with lawyer Les Watkins. Try “You’re Forever an Hourglass”.

Brighton, UK’s Things in Herds. Sort of an 8-Track stripped down style that results in a Nick Drake meets Damon Albarn home demo. Try “Everything Has to End Somewhere”.

March 8, 2004

NYC area band Downstage returns with new demos produced by Scrap 60 Productions (Ill Nino, Anthrax), try “On Second Thought”.

South Florida/Nashville 20 year old Shanna Crooks returning with new demos. I shopped her when she was 17 and more Country/Crossover. At the time RCA and Warner Bros flew to see her and the former Melisma flew her to LA. New co-writer Mark Oliverius helps her now. Lyrics aren’t good. Samples: “Shanna Crooks sample”.

Glasgow, Scotland’s The Cinematics are out and about. I fancy his voice because it reminds me vaguely of an uptemo Starsailor. The band name blows and the song is mediocre. Try “Wake Up”.

March 3, 2004

LA’s AllRise returns with new demos. The selling point of the band is his voice. Ease up on the compression and lo-fi. Sound can be Peter Gabriel, Hoobastank, Linkin Park, Incubus or even the more obscure RCA failure 700 Miles. Try “Victims and Martyrs”. Show at LA’s Viper Room March 11. allrisemusic.com

Inouk. Self-indulgent NYC prog rock. Technically they count as a NYC buzz band although they’ve been on the block for quite some time now. Produced by Chris Zane (Calla, Les Savy Fav, The Boggs).

Marly. 18 year old Danish girl who sings Euro dance. Repped by Collins/Long legal in the UK. Try the American oriented mix “You Never Know”

Anna Montgomery. Voluptuous blonde who backs Shelby Lynne, try “Julie Knows”

February 27, 2004

News:

Aerosmith’s new record hits streets March 30, titled “Honkin’ On Bobo”. Track listing (including many blues covers) is:

You Got To Move
I’m Ready
Eyesight To The Blind
Back Back Train
I Never Loved A Woman (The Way I Loved You)
Temperature
Stop Messin’ Around
Baby, Please Don’t Go
Road Runner
Jesus Is On The Main Line
Shame Shame Shame
The Grind

The Churchills sold 8000+ of their last release. New record completed and out in April. http://www.thechurchills.net

NYC’s Stupid at Luna Lounge 3/12. Fanbase is growing. http://www.stupidband.com

The Yards play their private NYC SIR showcases on 3/2 and 3/3

Boston’s Sudden Ease played NYC 2/23 at Knitting Factory. Produced by Matthew Ellard (Rubyhorse, Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Weezer). Singer is age 21. http://www.suddenease.com

February 23, 2004

Vancouver’s Doubting Paris. Produced by Daniel Mendez (Lit, Eve 6, Dakona) and Dwight Baker (Podunk, The Box Gods). I heard there are managers and lawyers on the tip plus some label folks. No signings yet. Sound is Counting Crows, Third Eye Blind, Coldplay, Oasis, Dinosaur Jr. Try “Good Intentions”, “Trembling” and “Reflections”. Email zac@doubtingparis.com.

Michigan duo Astaire turned out new demos. I heard they will be flown to LA soon. Universal, RCA, Warner, Capitol, Island Def Jam on the tip. Sound is like Cardigans meets Garbage. She sings well. Try “Dangerous To Love You”.

Birmingham, UK act Casino re-emerging. New song “Got No Place to Go”. Now booked by Chris Myhill of The Agency Group UK (Radiohead, Strokes, Muse and Brand New). Sound is like Stereophonics. I heard label people are flying in to see them.

San Francisco act Film School sold 3000 on Scott Kanneberg’s (Pavement) label. New songs recorded but currently no label deal. Fierce Panda, Poptones, Monotreme, Ace Fu, Film Guerrero all on the tip. KITS, KEXP radio digging it. “Like You Know” is my pick (found at site).

Did You Know That…

“Arista lost $200 million in the past two years….[Island Def Jam] lost $20 million in 2003” -Fortune magazine

Regarding The Cure:
“Some fans bid more than $3,000 on tickets to a March 5 charity show at London’s Camden Barfly. Organizers of the charity event put a pair of tickets on eBay’s virutual block” -music-news.com

February 11, 2004

Atlanta’s Claire Bradley. Age 20. Co-writer. Sounds like Michelle Branch or even Sheryl Crow. I think one Universal label is on the tip early, try “Long Way Down” or “Home”.

The Juliana Theory is now free of Epic. 300,000+ career soundscan. Last album sold 17,000+ first week. Large live draws in various markets North America/UK/Australia. Expect industry turnout at CBGB NYC show 2/17.

February 6, 2004

LA’s Brand Name Collision has new demos. Sounds vaguely like Filter but poppier, try “Ungrateful”

Columbus, Ohio’s Red Wanting Blue returns with new demos. Expect Verve Pipe meets Pearl Jam meets Train. Try a clip of “Tearing Down Stars”

London’s The Pinch have a cool sound but their songs aren’t good yet. Produced by Paul Corkett (Cure, Bjork, Cooper Temple Clause).

NYC’s Prosaics continue their plight to join the ranks of Brit retro-wave. Haven’t they been around for like 2 years now? They use Jenna Adler at CAA booking. Dudes from Interpol and Yeah Yeah Yeahs were at a recent show of theirs.

Boston duo Dresden Dolls still have heat. Sounds like rock cabaret, goth. Many fans in the Boston media including Infinity/WBCN. CD produced by Martin Bisi (Sonic Youth, Swans). Scheduled to record new songs with Sean Slade/Paul Colderie. NYC show at Joe’s Pub 2/10. Looking for big management.

February 4, 2004

Bellglide from Charlotte, North Carolina. Produced by Mitch Easter (REM, Pavement). Fronted by 21 year old Kate Gregory. UK rock (including U2) mixed with the rootsy American sounds of bands like Jolene. Click: “Change My Mind”

Megan Slankard will reportedly showcase for 143/Reprise. Sire is also on the tip now. Megan was posted in Demo Diaries 5 months ago and again on 10/21/03. Click: “Mockingbird”

February 3, 2004

I hear Wake will play to Virgin, Elektra, Capitol at LA’s Viper room 2/5 at 8pm. MPA booking now has interest as well. And hey, I posted this band exactly 5 months ago. Click to listen: “Mind is Yours”

I hear Sara Lowes has her first offer over in the UK. Completed CD. I posted her 8 months ago. Click: “Fragile Tide”

January 30, 2004

Noah Levi from New York City. For fans of U2, Coldplay, The Cure. High hopes already from a handful of industry tastemakers. Will start looking for management and legal. This single recorded with several others in the can: “Pieces”

January 28, 2004

LA act H is Orange may be for fans of U2, Juliana Theory, Sunny Day Real Estate. No manager or lawyer yet. New live album features the song “The Thrill of Escape”

January 27, 2004

London’s Bloc Party is still buzzing across the pond. At times it’s fast paced, quirky and energetic. High industry turnout at recent show.

January 22, 2004

DFive9 from Portland, Oregon. Sylvia Massey (Tool) produced. For fans of Disturbed, System of a Down, Rage Against The Machine. Click song Charlton Heston

January 16, 2004

Norwich UK group Cord has buzz due to BBC Radio championing them. Played to labels last week in London. Expect Coldplay, Radiohead, Elbow in their sound. Click: Give Me Today

April 8, 2004

Chris Grace. New York City. Not unlike Graham Colton, Adam Duritz, Eddie Vedder, Rob Thomas. Appears to be a Jeff Buckley influence. Try “Take It All Back”.

April 7, 2004

Playlist

1. “Good Intentions” by Doubting Paris
2. “Long Way Down” by Claire Bradley
3. “On Second Thought” by Downstage
4. “The Colors Red” by Nathan Duprey
5. “Breakdown” by The Broadcast
6. “Wasted Days” by Highwater Rising
7. “You’re Forever an Hourglass” by Benzos
8. “Ungrateful” by Brand Name Collision
9. “Mockingbird” by Megan Slankard
10. “Mind is Yours” by Wake
11. “No Better Time” by Lennex
12.”Victims and Martyrs” by AllRise
13. “All That I Wanted” by The Adored
14. “Prince” by Jacobstone
15. “Stillborn” by Owen Beverly

ADD: “Flying Around the Sun” by Penny Nixon (Belfast, Northern Ireland)
ADD: “Shine Down On Me” by inspiteof (New York City)

April 5, 2004

Top 12 Roundup

1. “Good Intentions” by Doubting Paris
2. “Long Way Down” by Claire Bradley
3. “On Second Thought” by Downstage
4. “No Better Time” by Lennex
5. “The Colors Red” by Nathan Duprey
6. “Breakdown” by The Broadcast
7. “Wasted Days” by Highwater Rising
8. “You’re Forever an Hourglass” by Benzos
9. “Victims and Martyrs” by AllRise
10. “Ungrateful” by Brand Name Collision
11. “Mockingbird” by Megan Slankard
12. “Mind is Yours” by Wake

April 27, 2004

Went to the Broadway premiere of “A Raisin in the Sun” last night starring P. Diddy. Lots of folks there including Oprah, Beyonce, Jay-Z, Spike Lee, Heavy D, Chris Rock, Chris Tucker, Angela Bassett, Ozzie Davis etc. Then I went to the Hennessy sponsored after party and got loaded on a lethal combination of wine, gin/tonic, orange/vodka and several cognacs. Soon after I went to P. Diddy’s party at Marquee down in the West 20s. I could swear I saw some of the cutest women NYC has to offer. It was divine.

The Hung Over Sampler

“Unsaid” by Fray
“Chandeliers” by Tamas Wells
“Thoughts On You and Me” by Eliot Morris
“Pillows and Records” by Highwater Rising

April 23, 2004

The Bi-Polar Sampler

My favorite artist from Australia is Tamas Wells. His record is hot. Sounds like Travis, Elliot Smith, Beatles, Belle & Sebastian, Death Cab for Cutie. Produced by Tim Whitten. In an ideal world it’d air on KCRW and “The OC” simultaneously. Play it if a blonde girl breaks your heart. “Annalee Argyle” by Tamas Wells.

The lesson of the day boys and girls is that people are mean and vindictive. This drives them to drink and hit up bands like Buffalo’s Stemm. Remember when Jonathan Davis used his throat? Play this when…er…a blonde girl breaks your heart. “Monster” by Stemm.

April 20, 2004

Playlist

1. “Just for a Day” by Sowatt (Canada, sounds like Third Eye Blind, Vertical Horizon)
2. “Telephone” by Kim Taylor (Cincinnati, sounds like Patty Griffin, Rachael Yamagata)
3. “Honest Mistake” by Bravery (NYC, sounds like early New Order, Cure. I heard a label is flying them to LA)
4. “Dirty Water” by Heavy Mojo (Atlanta, sounds like Outkast goes rock. I heard Warner is flying them to NYC)
5. “Without Reason” by Fray (Denver, sounds like U2, Lifehouse)

April 14, 2004

Playlist

1.”Pillows and Records” by Highwater Rising (new!)
2.”Take It All Back” by Chris Grace
3.”Stillborn” by Owen Beverly
4.”Mind is Yours” by Wake
5.”Good Intentions” by Doubting Paris
6.”Flying Around the Sun” by Penny Nixon
7.”Diary” by Spindle (early D. Diaries artist now signed to Triple Crown)
8.”Useless” by Assisted Living
9.”Philipa Future” by Uturn (new from the UK!)

News:

Trapt and management have eyed a new Burlingame, California band to sign on and develop. They’re called Aphasia.
Ken Lewis (Kanye West, Usher, Janet Jackson, David Byrne) has produced a new Ohio band called Small Town Sleeper with shopping to begin shortly.
Arista and Elektra vet Pete Rosenblum is managing a new band called SGT. Hear their poppy song “Bleed”.
This Holiday Life from San Diego has a Coldplay, Radiohead, U2, Celebrity thing going on. Knock yourself out with their “MP3 Player”.
Sylvia Massy produced a new demo by the San Francisco band Solid State Logic.

PYRITE is driving modern rock songs, memorable lyrics, solid musicianship and intense live energy. Members are driven professionals carving an original signature sound. The five-song demo is available. 2004 Atlantis Music Conference choice. NYC shows: Continental 8PM 5/27, Arlene Grocery 5/28 7PM. PyriteManagement@aol.com

Articles

6th anniversary: Demo Diaries extends a big thank you to its list of readers worldwide. Cheers.

June 2, 2004

Note to self, evidently hit songs still use D-D/A-Bm7-G/D chords.

Artists already on the industry map include:

New Zealand heavy rockers The Have. Turnout to 6/7 NYC Mercury Lounge showcase may include Warner, Sony, Universal, Interscope, Virgin, Atlantic, TVT, Octone, Universal Pub, EMI Pub. I think they have private showcases set up as well. UK’s Music Week featured them etc (contact them via Michael Cirelli, Esq. at michael@maclaw1.com)

Cleveland, Ohio’s Kate Voegele. Age 17. Try “Fooling Myself”

June 1, 2004

Niki Barr from Denton, Maryland. Age 20. A meeting here and there with Universal, Sony, MTV and soon new recordings with name producers Jim Ebert and Jeff Juliano. She sounds like a lot of the young female pop rockers out there add a little Joan Jett, Sheryl Crow. Try a clip from “Nobody”

The Pinch from London return with new demos. Expect Radiohead, Elbow, Peter Gabriel. You like minor chords? Try “Switches”

Chloe plays at NYC’s Living Room 6/22 @ 10PM. She’s produced by and plays with Duncan Sheik.

Minneapolis’ Shadow Box finally comes to NYC’s Arlene Grocery 6/17.

May 27, 2004

Tina Dico from Denmark. You know her as a singer for Zero 7. On her own she could almost be confused as an Austin or Nashville transplant. I believe she was something like #47 at KCRW last week. Try “Back Where We Started” or “Break of Day”

May 26, 2004

My site is featured in Billboard magazine again. A nice big spread this time in the 5/29 issue, page 49.

The Daylights from LA. Produced in part by noted songwriters Darrell Brown and Dennis Matkosky, mixed by David Leonard. I’m gonna say it’s like Wilco, Coldplay, Billy Joel, Gavin DeGraw. Try “If Words Were Bullets”. I think they’re playing in LA tomorrow 5/27, The Gig @ 8:30.

Diana Anaid from Australia. She should straighten her hair. Other than that, she could write for the likes of Michelle Branch. Has her own deal with Trauma.

May 25, 2004

Bec Hollcraft from Portland, Oregon. She’s age 15. Not signed to a major yet but hooked up with Meredith Brook’s Kissing Booth Music. Now added at commercial radio KINK-FM (market 24). I suspect she’s with David Christensen Management. Not unlike Avril at times but also add some queer Lita Ford 80s keyboards. Or rather Brooks is just doing a little body snatching here? Oh lord.

Laura Burhenn from Washington D.C. (Fiona, Norah etc). Waif blonde with a keyboard. Hopefully she won’t make the audience yawn at NYC’s Pianos 6/6 @ 7PM. Try a clip of “Helicopters”

May 24, 2004

This band Bedspace from the UK. Gavin DeGraw, Freedy Johnston? It’d be nice to hear this voice in the backdrop of a Hollywood romance comedy (the part right before boy makes up with girl). Try “Bright Lights”. I’d like to think it was a one take on the vocals and then off to the pub for them.

May 20, 2004

Music Then: Grade School Memories, May Charts 1984

U.S.

1) Hello – Lionel Richie (melancholy pop, but can’t appreciate at age –. I was infatuated with The Police to the utmost extent. When some kid stood up in music class and gave an oral report on Def Leppard I looked at him in utter contempt)

2) Let’s Hear It for the Boy – Deniece Williams (Why wasn’t it painful to watch Kevin Bacon’s moves in “Footloose” then?)

3) Against All Odds – Phil Collins (I like this sad song, still. The film was run of the mill. I was a closet fan of his in the early 80s – even beyond “In the Air Tonight”)

4) Hold Me Now – Thompson Twins (I liked them and Howard Jones’ “New Song”. Many of today’s neo 80s acts take their cue from these guys but hide behind mod clothing and hair spray-less locks. I remember hearing these tunes on my class trip to Wash D.C. I had some kind of disk oriented camera that disappeared as quickly as the 2XL robot 8-track)

5) To All The Girls I’ve Loved Before – Julio Iglesias & Willie Nelson (I know this song but can’t recall playing spin the bottle to it)

6) Time After Time – Cyndi Lauper (closet fan of this song. But I couldn’t say so at baseball practice)

7) Love Somebody – Rick Springfield (Cheesy, although many disagree with moi)

8) Oh Sherrie – Steve Perry (Not till my later years could I appreciate Journey’s melodies and Steve’s vocal presence. But I’ll never buy a CD of theirs. For better or worse they furthured arena rock’s “power ballad w/lighter”. I think to this day they seemingly retain more street cred than say a Matchbox Twenty. Surprisingly they came up in the Bay Area.)

9) You Might Think – The Cars (I saw Ric Ocasek at Arlene Grocery one night a few months ago – he looks the same)

10) Footloose – Kenny Loggins (again, if you watch the movie stoned or straight, well, you feel stoned either way)

U.K.

1) The Reflex – Duran Duran (in part, Boy Bands took their cue from them. Except they played real instruments on stage aside from sequencers. I met them later in the summer of 93 while working a WPLJ outdoor Jersey concert. Simon was the only one who said hello to me)

2) Automatic – The Pointer Sisters (shake your booty song, no other value)

3) Against All Odds (Take a Look At Me Now) – Phil Collins (this song again?)

4) I Want to Break Free – Queen (I could swear I can’t hum this tune to you if asked? Queen fans now hissing at me. Eventually you’ll come out of the closet)

5) One Love – Bob Marley & The Wailers (this song is commercialized, literally, always on TV in the background albeit different performers)

6) Locomotion – O.M.D. (never liked them or The The)

7) When You’re Young and In Love – Flying Pickets (again, I’m at a loss)

8) Don’t Tell Me – Blancmange (oh shite, at a loss yet another time, someone educate me? I know melodies more than titles)

9) Footloose – Kenny Loggins (enough said, I’ll refer you to “Caddyshack” instead with the gopher dance. Anyone seen Kenny’s royalty checks lately? Or for that matter, where is writer Ed Cobb of “Tainted Love” fame? Seriously)

10) Let’s hear It for the Boy – Deniece Williams (she wasn’t that pretty)

May 14, 2004

Bands That Sound Like They’re from the UK

“Help Me Out” and “All Right” by U-Phonik (Charlotte, North Carolina. U2, Radiohead, Feeder)

“Pull Your Body Through” by Ragsy (Sundays, Sneaker Pimps, Gwen Stefani)

With a sound ranging from vintage Judy Garland to piano driven Fiona Apple/Queen style rockers, and at times even recalling Liza or Streisand, Chantel comes across as an off Broadway diva-young and hip enough for the MTV crowd. Showcase: Vancouver, Canada’s Media Club June 10 9:30. Management: scott@flyebird.com, 604-681-3315. http://www.chantelmarie.com
PYRITE is driving modern rock songs, memorable lyrics, solid musicianship and intense live energy. Members are driven professionals carving an original signature sound. The five-song demo is available. 2004 Atlantis Music Conference choice. NYC shows: Continental 8PM 5/27, Arlene Grocery 5/28 7PM. PyriteManagement@aol.com

Articles

6th anniversary: Demo Diaries extends a big thank you to its list of readers worldwide. Cheers.

June 10, 2004

Here’s the latest Abandoned Pools demo clip “Lucky”. Still managed by Tony Ciulla (Marilyn Manson).

June 9, 2004

Triple A Bursting, The Industry Returns to Album Cuts

Judd & Maggie from Baltimore. A handful of ears is perking up to this newcomer indie duo. I picked the ballad to post. Makes ’em sound like Coldplay goes Nashville. Lenny Waronker exec producer. Managed by Big Helium (eastmountainsouth). NYC showcase at Housing Works (Crosby Street) 6/17 @ 7:30. Try “Big Lights”

Adam Hood from Opelika, Alabama. Like Chris Robinson but with a rootsy warmth. Try “Coffee Song”

News:

Celebrityjustice.com is relatively entertaining. They keep count on charges filed against Courtney Love. The site reports “[On 4/25] Love assaulted a woman by the name of Kristin King by throwing a bottle and a metal flashlight at her….[it] happened at the very same house where Love got herself into hot water last October, that of her former manager and ex-boyfriend, music producer [and ex-Geffen A&R] Jim Barber….[Love] still faces two other charges of felony drug possession and assault charges from a recent nightclub incident in New York”

The Have head to LA for a follow up showcase at Key Club 6/15 @ 8:15. Still on the tip are Warner, Sony, Virgin, Interscope, Maverick and Universal Publishing etc.

June 6, 2004

Sunday morning. There’s a street fair right by my house on 2nd avenue. It’s raining. I’ll go about listening to the new indie album by Susie Hug. Travis’ Fran Healy funded and produced the CD (Travis members play on the record). She’s married to Pretenders’ guitarist Adam Seymour and her performance/writing background includes Katydids, Travis, The Blue Aeroplanes, The Mighty Lemon Drops. She’s signed to Sony Publishing.

Abandoned Pools have some new material. They (or rather Tommy Walter) were actually called Tely in my July 12, 1999 post as an unsigned act. They released a CD on the now defunct Extasy/WEA label, sold about 90,000. As a current indie act their new cut “Maybe Then Someday” will be in the upcoming Miramax film “Underclassmen”. LA lawyer Ben McLane can tell you more.

June 4, 2004

Friday Afternoon Playlist:

“All Around” by Silent Corporation (Australia. 19-20 years olds. Almost that Hoobastank, Used vibe. Some U.S. folks on the tip)

“Undertow” by Daisy Ricochet (NYC. Oddly it’s like Foo Fighters, Elliot Smith, Jawbox, Everclear)

“Oyster Mud” by Chuck Carrier (Atlanta. Vertical Horizon meets Vigilantes of Love)

Notes:

Turn Off The Stars from Toronto. Vaguely like Coldplay, Pete Yorn, Rob Thomas. Managed by Cerberus Artists (Holly McNarland) which I believe is run in part by former Universal Canada A&R Brian Hetherman. Heck, just hit their Much Music added indie video “Please”

Sarah Sharp from Austin, Texas. Station adds at KTXN, KUT, KPFT, CFUR (#19 last week) helped put The Agency Group, Rounder Records, Bluewater Music Publishing on the tip.

Eugene, Oregon’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Soldiers have signed with Atlantic. Their last batch of songs was produced by Dave Cobb (of former Demo Diaries band Tender Idols).

Katy Vs Evil, an amalgamation of electronic, pop, classical and rock has drawn inevitable comparisons to fellow femmes Fiona Apple and Tori Amos, while subtly forging its own unique vision. KVE currently seeks management in NYC. Showcase at the Millennium Music Conference. Contact info@katyvsevil.com

June 30, 2004

M83 already signed to Mute North America. Talk about luscious melodica, this is so likeable. This 24 year old French duo is for fans of Air, Radiohead, Sigur Ros: “Run Into Flowers”

The Marble Index released on Universal Canada but still unlicensed in the States. Commercial station 89X Detroit has spun “I Believe” up to 28 times/week.

June 29, 2004

Gina Villalobos from Los Angeles. Really solid record like Sheryl Crow, Lucinda Williams. She has that Lost Highway feel. Recorded with Eric Colvin (Rooney, Sonique) and guitarist Kevin Haaland (The Rising) among others. Show July 3 at LA’s Hotel Cafe. Try “Fooling Around”

NYC’s Morningwood signed to Capitol. Their management (Eddie Applebaum @ The Greenhouse) discovered them in Demo Diaries November 4, 2002.

The Dammitheads from Racine, Wisconsin. If you like Joe Strummer, Elvis Costello, Replacements. Audio streaming at their site.

June 22, 2004

Tristan Prettyman from San Diego. Age 21. I think she turned down some label offer(s). Buddies with Jason Mraz. Toured with G-Love (they share Philadelphonic Management and William Morris booking). She’s rooted in Ani, Alana Davis, Jewel. Quality voice, sexy even. I believe she’s in Philadelphia now recording a full length. 3 weeks ago she played a newer song on a San Diego morning TV show: video clip

Nouvelle Vague from France. Already signed to UK indie Peace Frog and scheduled for release on !K7 Records in the States. Specialty and Non-Commercial radio can look forward to these bossanova covers of The Cure, Joy Division, The Clash etc.

June 16, 2004

33Hz from NYC. Prince fans would get it. Polydor, V2, Sony taking meetings. Debut mixed by Cyrille Taillandier (Mya, Lenny Kravitz). Contact is info@outlookmusic.com

Saccharine from NYC. Candlebox, Neil Diamond, Bon Jovi? Any one of them could cover this Glen Robinson (Probot/Dave Grohl) produced reeking metaphor: “Freight Train”

Ross Copperman from Harrisonburg, VA. Billy Joel, Jason Mraz? Good for TV and uber compressed: “Fly Away”

New Remorse from Boston. Depeche Mode, Human League, The Beloved, Wolfsheim. Good for TV or neo-wave fans in Europe. You miss some of the bells and whistles in MP3 quality: “Kiss Me”

June 10, 2004

Here’s the latest Abandoned Pools demo clip “Lucky”. Still managed by Tony Ciulla (Marilyn Manson).

July 20, 2004

“Dirty Wings”

Megan Slankard
(almost 500 CDs sold in one day 7/17)
“Evaporated”

Tristan Prettyman
“Honest Mistake”

The Bravery
“Take It All Back”

Chris Grace
“Lucky”

Abandoned Pools
“Good Intentions”

Doubting Paris
“Long Way Down”

Claire Bradley
“Mind is Yours”

Wake
“Fooling Around”

Gina Villalobos

I recommend watching Radiohead’s Meeting People is Easy DVD. You get to experience Yorke’s moodswings back in the day. Like how he didn’t want to film a tv promo. He can barely read the cue cards. Also it shows the outtakes of the “No Surprises” video and the look of fear on his face when his breath keeps running out in the “water helmet”. It’s satisfying to see artists work without having fun. I also recommend “24 Hour Party People” DVD, Mayor of the Sunset Strip (in theaters) and Live Forever DVD.

I still didn’t finish my concert attendance history:

Big Head Todd, Univ of Colorado Student Center, Fall 1990
Generally, they were ok. Their Giant/Warner release in Feb 1993 sold a million.

Toad the Wet Sprocket, Univ of Colorado, 1990 or 1991?
This was before they had their radio hits. They used to be so depressing for a Santa Barbara band. Their 2nd CD “Pale” was truly likeable. Singer Glenn cut all his hair off for this “Fear” tour (3rd CD release). This show had maybe 150 draw.

AC/DC, McNichols Arena, Denver 1991
Someone spilled bong water on my ski jacket. It was foul smelling for weeks after. That’s all I remember–oh–and they shot off these faux cannons inside the arena.

Grant Lee Buffalo, Astoria London, Fall 1993
I wanted to see what all the fuss was about at the time. The venue was packed. I think I got a scalper’s ticket. I’m not sure I’d post it as one of my fave shows of all time.

Peter Gabriel, Meadowlands Arena NJ, June 24 1993
I’d rate this show high. He sat in on drums. Walked out of the red telephone booth (UK) prop thingy to open the show. Had the headpiece mic thing goin’ on. The sound was good, the set list was good.

July 19, 2004

It was after 6pm. I was out getting the usual, a slice of pizza and orange Snapple. Down at 68th/1st Ave. The Snapple cap claims ‘Finland has more saunas than cars’. This is suspicious. Anyhow I thought I’d try and catch the early showing of Napoleon Dynamite around the corner at the lovely Beekman Theatre. Instead I fell ass backward into the world premiere of Manchurian Candidate (remake). Paparazzi flashes and all waiting for Denzel Washington to pull up in this big, black GMC Yukon. He made ’em wait. I think he might’ve been in the truck listening to a mix of R&B. But eventually he came out in a white-t and baseball cap. When did they replace limos with GMCs and Suburbans in government and entertainment?

Nevertheless, at 8pm I made my way over to Central Park’s Great Lawn to see the free NY Philharmonic. Thousands upon thousands of people turned out. All the women there were unbearably hot. It was too distracting, I had to leave.

Elle Giye. New Orleans. Age 22. One trip to NYC, 2 big label offers. No showcases. Pretty much the next Sade.

The best cover of the last 12 months is clearly “Wonderwall” by Ryan Adams. Expect nothing less from producer John Porter (The Smiths). You hear it all over TV–most recently on the ABC series “The Days”.

July 16, 2004

“Why don’t A&R men look out of the window in the morning? It gives them something to do in the afternoon.” -Boo Hewerdine

July 15, 2004

Trances Arc from Atlanta. His voice is buried in the mix. Overt Buckley, Radiohead, Beatles influence with American gloss to boot: “India”. I should go watch this band at the Atlantis fest thing. But wait, I have no money so I can’t get down there. If I could go I’d bring the cell phone I don’t have, a pack of cigs and a backpack. This way I’d fit in with the same 5-10 A&R people that go to every conference. Oh and I’d buy a pair of puma sneaks to wear too…and…I’d read a newspaper during the actual performance…and…then I’d sit on a panel and pretend to know what a hit was. And then I’d stand up and say “I want to be free to get loaded [like the Soup Dragons song]…and all of you are suckers because you paid $30 to be accepted to any one of these music conferences just to play to the same old audience you always do: moms, pops and your scrappy poodle Tricksy.” This is the part where’d I’d collapse onto the buffet table drunk.

Live Aid (DVD) will finally come out 20 years after the charity event. An event where U2 went from stars to superstars. Bono almost fell off the stage while on his way down to dance with that Indian chic. Sting (dressed in loose, white garb) and Phil Collins did “Long, Long Way to Go”. I quite liked that. I have a vivid memory of watching it on TV from Fire Island. I’m convinced that nostalgia isn’t the only reason I miss these days. Did I mention that music blows now? Dare I list some of my concert experiences from years past:

Janes Addiction, Denver, Dec 1990
Perry instructs the audience that if one more shoe is thrown up on stage he’s quitting the show. So some kid threw a Birkenstock. Perry walked off, got loaded on a bottle of wine probably and returned to finish. Some chic slept through the whole show I recall. Primus opened and stupid kids were climbing the lighting scaffold.

Grateful Dead, Kaiser Convention Center, Oakland CA Feb 9 1986
My ma and little brother were at this show with me along with my sis and her boyfriend at the time. I think it was my first official rock concert. Naturally the arena was filled with pot smoke–and psychoactive drugs were readily available. I’m not sure anyone was talking big about ecstasy yet though. I was a -th grader with chicken legs. I still look the same sorta. They did that space drum solo thing forever and my little bro fell asleep right then and there.

R.E.M., Nassau Coliseum, Long Island Sept 1988
This show sucked. Stipe threw a tantrum and walked off stage. The only song that got the little girls in the audience excited was “Stand”. And here I was waiting for a set list from “Reckoning”.

U2, Yankee Stadium, Aug 29 1992
It’s cool to see a rock show at Yankee Stadium. I would’ve preferred to have seen the Arizona Sun Devil Stadium show featured in “Rattle & Hum”.

Lollapalooza 1, Waterloo Village NJ, Aug 11 1991
I couldn’t even see NIN because of all the ice fog shite. The audience didn’t seem to embrace him. They didn’t know what was around the corner. Siouxsie didn’t show up for her set (friggin’ flake). Ice T sucked, Living Colour sucked. Janes was good headlining. My girlfriend and I had a fight in the car on the way home.

The Cure, Hartford Civic Center, May 19 1992
Well this just plain sucked. Way too loud and of course Robert is relatively boring to watch on stage. You go more to see all the Cure-fags with their hair and make-up. It’s so cute and sycophantic. The Cranes were supposed to open but didn’t show up because of visa shite. I always end up at concerts where bands don’t show up. Nice. My girlfriend and I had a fight in the car on the way home (yes, again).

Radiohead, Madison Square Garden, Oct 9 2003
I loved this show. I hadn’t seen Thom or Johnny play since I worked the WDRE X-Mas Acoustic Concert in December 1994 (at this, I distinctly recall their duo performance of “Black Star”). Anyhow, at the MSG show Thom played “True Love Waits”. That was hot.

Rolling Stones, Shea Stadium, October 10 1989
Really cool opening….”Start Me Up”. They had this neat tribal beat intro that got the crowd worked up. Living Colour opened (I feel like this band has stalked me my whole life). Anyhow, I was close to the stage. The volume of Charlie Watts’ kick drum knocked the wind out of me. I couldn’t sedate myself because I was without a fake-id for beer.

Dave Matthews Band, Wetlands NYC, June 1993
He played before John Popper’s set. Way too loud. Maybe 15-20 people in front of the tiny stage. Pretty good though actually.

July 14, 2004

If I must go out tonight my choice will be the The Living Room in NYC. Why? Because I’ve done some licensing clearance on French EMI artist Keren Ann for a certain project and I figured I’d check it out live. Also playing this bill is unsigned Baton Rouge, Louisiana transplant Kristen Diable–best to either yawn or applaud her 4:59min live video clip: “Picture Frame”

July 9, 2004

The Exit from NYC. I only saw them once like over a year ago at Luna Lounge club. What they lack in stage presence and vocals the drummer makes up for with sheer ferocity (he could be Stewart Copeland Jr). On indie label Some, but you never know how things will progress. UK’s Bloc Party graduated so… New Exit CD due on 9/7. They toured with Muse this year. They need more drummer in this video: “Lonely Man’s Wallet”

July 8, 2004

Agynst from Summerville, South Carolina. 19 year olds. Sylvia Massy Shivy produced. I’m not a fan of the band name. Try “Young”

Sacramento’s Key to Arson is still doing well up there. If you like the Hoobastank variety stream their new video “One Last Night” at KWOD

World Wide Spies play LA’s Key Club July 20. In touch with Virgin and Caroline labels. No manager yet.

Gina Villalobos from LA. Really solid like Sheryl Crow, Lucinda Williams. No lawyer yet. Try “Fooling Around”

San Francisco’s Wake is in the studio with Jerry Harrison.

June 2004 Highlight:

Tristan Prettyman from San Diego. Age 21. I think she turned down some label offer(s) some time ago. Buddies with Jason Mraz. Toured with G-Love (they share Philadelphonic Management and William Morris booking). She’s rooted in Ani, Alana Davis, Jewel. Quality voice, sexy even. I believe she’s in Philadelphia now recording a full length. 3 weeks ago she played a newer song on a San Diego morning TV show: “Love Love Love (video)”

Revery – Driving, hooky, infectious modern hard rock with elements of old school and new. In the vein of Velvet Revolver and Nickelback. Supporting newly completed 12-song album mixed by Drew Mazurek (Linkin Park, Nothingface). Album contains strong material suited for Active Rock, Modern Rock, and Adult Contemporary radio. Artist seeking direct deal/label/distribution. Management is Jim Anderson (Anderson Entertainment) at mgmt@reverymusic.com or 757�287-8746. Legal is Lee Beitchman 404-897-5254.

Katy Vs Evil, an amalgamation of electronic, pop, classical and rock has drawn inevitable comparisons to fellow femmes Fiona Apple and Tori Amos, while subtly forging its own unique vision. KVE currently seeks management in NYC. Showcase at the Millennium Music Conference. Contact info@katyvsevil.com

On our 6th year anniversary, Demodiaries.com thanks all its readers worldwide.

July 28, 2004

“Scorpions and Mudpies”

Shamra
“Vienna”

The Fray
“Traveling Show” (new)

Reed Waddle
“Dirty Wings”

Megan Slankard
(almost 500 CDs sold in one day 7/17)
“Evaporated”

Tristan Prettyman
“Honest Mistake”

The Bravery
“Take It All Back”

Chris Grace
“Lucky”

Abandoned Pools
“Good Intentions”

Doubting Paris
“Long Way Down”

Claire Bradley
“Mind is Yours”

Wake
“Fooling Around”

Gina Villalobos

I went to NYC’s Luna Lounge last night. Garrison Starr was on first. She’s been signed to Geffen, Back Porch and now Vanguard. She’s southern and tomboyish but with nice melodies. Her voice is a little thin when compared to name folks like Patty Griffin. Apparently it was a last minute booking, but I think 7 people were there to see her (mostly roomates of friends I’m guessing). She’s had 3 major record deals, her name comes up 64,800 times on google, and 7 people came to her NYC gig? Truly fascinating what a career amounts to.

Shamra played next. I’ve seen them quite a bit over the last year and this was the most comfortable they’ve ever been as performers. Insisting on an organic, live sound stripped of transparent, commercial frills, this 5 piece finally reached the soulful plateau it so eagerly anticipated from inception.

July 26, 2004

I keep reading about LA’s Giant Drag everywhere. Of course you can see their video here: “This Isn’t It” (hm…wonder if that’s related to Strokes’ “This Is It”) If you’re a fan of the ‘raw indie girl pop’ thing, your money would be better spent on fellow, youngin’ (18) locals The Like with “Falling Away” or Hollywood trouble queen Kristin King (she plays 7/29 at Club Sixteen Fifty in Hollywood on Schrader).

On the opposite coast, if you want to be a poser indie kid on NYC’s Lower East Side (tattoo on ass crack), you’ll be drinkin’ cheap beer outta plastic cups at Mercury Lounge on 7/30 as Asobi Seksu showoff their Brit sensibility with brash guitars and ambient synth. Earlier in the evening you may catch Benzos, a 6 piece that finds solace in a Jeff Buckley goes beats style.

July 23, 2004

Jet Motor Crash from San Bernardino, CA. Since they’re from this area of Cali, can you guess what they’ll sound like then? RCA, Atlantic, Roadrunner looking into it.

July 22, 2004

I see The Adored signed to Columbia. I posted them way back when, October 15 2003. Bryan, the singer, had sent me material at the time. Remember he was in that band Flynova?

Solid State Logic (SSL) – “More laden with hooks than any of Clive Barker’s Cenobites” (Zero Magazine). This heavy rock band has become one of the largest draws in San Francisco after only two shows, recently pulling 300+ at Slims in SF. Receiving immediate industry attention and offered a slot with Static X and Trust Company. Check out “It’s Not Over”. info@sslmusic.com – 415.596.4276

July 31, 2004

Hero Pattern from Sparta, New Jersey. I heard something about industry folks planning on going to their 8/12 NYC show at Mercury Lounge 8pm. They’ll also be screening this new video then: “Monster”

July 30, 2004

“If Words Were Bullets”

The Daylights
“Supposed to Be”

Cary Brothers
“Scorpions and Mudpies”

Shamra
“Vienna”

The Fray
“Traveling Show” (new)

Reed Waddle
“Dirty Wings”

Megan Slankard
(almost 500 CDs sold in one day 7/17)
“Evaporated”

Tristan Prettyman
“Honest Mistake”

The Bravery
“Take It All Back”

Chris Grace
“Lucky”

Abandoned Pools
“Good Intentions”

Doubting Paris
“Long Way Down”

Claire Bradley
“Mind is Yours”

Wake
“Fooling Around”

This is a re-run of my May 26 posting–but with update that major label (private showcase?)/publishing/film now focusing closely on The Daylights from LA. Produced in part by noted songwriters Darrell Brown and Dennis Matkosky, mixed by David Leonard. I’m gonna say it’s like Wilco, Coldplay, Billy Joel, Gavin DeGraw. Try “If Words Were Bullets”. LA show at Whisky 8/4 @ 8pm.

Cary Brothers from LA. Produced by Chad Fischer (Alexi Murdoch). Has song on the buzzing “Garden State” film soundtrack. Expect Pete Yorn, New Order vibe: “Supposed To Be”. Speaking of the “Garden State” flic, the trailer is hot with that Frou Frou tune “Let Go” in it.

July 29, 2004

Clovis from Tulsa, Oklahoma. The last time I discovered a band from Tulsa, I gave them to big lawyer Tim Mandelbaum who closed a deal with Republic/Universal. You remember them as Mollys Yes. Oh b.s., you don’t remember them because they went nowhere fast. Anyway, Clovis is exhorbitant power pop unashamed to be rooted in say Cheap Trick, Material Issue, Gin Blossoms (also cheesy Bodeans, Alarm kinda stuff). Sonically, it sounds really good but the lyrics aren’t entirely convincing. Don’t waste your time with the first 2 songs in their music section, maybe try the third.

October , 2004 (adverts)

The BritBus Tour – a new major promotional initiative for British Music in the USA will be officially launched during CMJ at a British showcase in Virgin Megastore Union Square on October 13th at 6:30pm. Developed by British singer-songwriter Julia Jones (Appleby Music/BMG Publishing), this initiative has grabbed the attention and support of major brands in the past year, including Virgin Megastore, CMJ, BBC Radio & TV, the British Government, and a variety of other high-profile partners in tv, radio, and print. The promotional initiative features a new online magazine and an annual 8000 mile Spring Tour of US venues in the vintage British double-decker bus. http://www.thebritbustour.com. Contact juliaj@bagabones.com

Paul Manousos is just off of his solo/acoustic tour of the US and parts of Europe. He is back writing and recording more music to fill his catalog of close to 100 songs. His songs capture audiences with hook after hook and his distinct heartfelt vocals are hard to match. Represented by attorney Greg Gilman. Listen to “Beautiful Girl”. http://www.paulmanousos.com.
paul@paulmanousos.com

Fono – U2 meets the Foo Fighters – toured with Goo Goo Dolls, Robert Plant, Third Eye Blind and Tonic. New CD recorded with Alan Sanderson (Weezer, Stones), debut sold 40K, top 10 in speciality. Fall tour booked and national radio campaign about to start. Seeking label/licensing/distribution. fono.net – contact info@fono.net

The Mint. 5 piece band from Pennsylvania, reminiscent of Third Eye Blind, Coldplay, Jimmy Eat World. Top 10 song on one of nation’s largest CCM station’s rock countdown. Over 6,000 units sold independently. Has played with Blindside, Switchfoot, Jars of Clay etc. Currently seeking management/label in the general market. http://www.themintonline.com. info@themintonline.com

Paul Ibberson is a London (UK) based artist that has been said to sound like Crowded House and Squeeze. He has been writing and performing for many years. His music has been described as a breath of fresh air. Paul has written songs for MTV as background music for an animated logo. After that came the music for 2 animation shorts for channel 4 and the soundtrack to a live-action film by a Lebanese director. Artist is looking for direct deal/label. http://www.paulibberson.com. Please contact Ronnie Gache at info@divemusic.co.uk

October 11, 2004

“Safety Net”
Twin-A

Demo Diaries Sponsored Set Oct 19 @ 8:30, Mercury Lounge (NYC)
Sign up for guest list by emailing here

Twin-A from NYC. Intricate melodies, big vocals and the live show is second to none. Come to the NYC Mercury Lounge showcase 10/19 at 8:30pm. This is a Demo Diaries sponsored showcase/set. Listen to the medley of brand new songs I compiled here. Sign up for guest list by emailing here

Scent from Atlanta. Produced by EMI songwriter Rick Beato (Charlie Mars, Shinedown, Desmond Child). Clean, melodic, structured. You’d think the Hoobastank, Puddle of Mudd, Linkin Park genre is just about dead but that’s just when a label like Wind-Up comes in and squeezes out a hit (and everyone hates them for it). Try “Justify”.
Email

Embassy from Columbus, Ohio. I heard they were flown to NYC a few weeks ago to play for the Sony labels in addition to others. I know Brian Schall is their lawyer. Tim Patalan produced new songs for them last summer. Midwestern power pop with that pussy Gin Blossoms appeal. No, no I take that back–there is a hint of early REM in there. Try “It’s Over”. The band plays Columbus’ Newport Music Hall 10/15. Email

Tim Patalan (he’s in Sire act The Fags and also produced Sponge’s hit years ago) has also worked with another Columbus band in the past named Watershed. I met Tim at a Watershed showcase in NYC a couple years back. It appeared I was close to getting the band signed to the then Blackbird/Atlantic label. It never went down. Oh well. Anyhow, check out the truly catchy Cheap Trick-esque, arena rock sound on Watershed’s brand new single “Obvious”.
Email

The Daylights from Los Angeles. I already covered them months and months ago. They will finally release an EP on Oct. 20 at Viper Room show 10:30pm. Columbia, Epic, WB, Virgin and Thrive/Sony expected. Favored song is “If Words Were Bullets”. Email

October 8, 2004

Silence. Thank god.

September, 2004 Hi-Lite

The Strays from London, Athens, LA. A motley bunch they are. You know singer Toby as son to Steve Marriot (Humble Pie, Faces). The prolific Dave Cobb produced their LP. I heard something about the Lizard King label (The Killers) making an offer as well as a full Sony label showcase last week in NYC. A link for audio is here. A link for video is here.

November 29, 2004

I got myself on the guestlist at Pianos and witnessed the first ever NYC show by Mancunians Longview. In fact they are still signed directly to Warner UK. I’ll best describe them as The Verve covering Ride if the lead singer looked like a tall Beck with Chris Martin’s timbre. I should add that there’s this nutrasweet Brit rock appeal about them as well–a tight, melodic, controlled mayhem with reverb, echo and jam-like qualities. Time warp it back to 1992 Manchester, UK and you’ll feel right at home. I imagine the audience was 80 people strong including Matt Pinfield (92.3 K-Rock, Columbia Records). I suspect Columbia’s Greg Boggs was there too waiting to see his signing Elkland go on at 10pm.

I’m on an anglo-phile kick lately and that explains my massive appetite for all things UK/Euro. I watched the flic Intermission this past weekend starring Colin Farrell. He’s good as always but even better and picking up serious heat in Hollywood is Cillian Murphy (28 Days Later, Girl With A Pearl Earring, Batman Begins [upcoming 2005]). Brilliant actor and terribly handsome.

November 22, 2004

By now all of NYC knows that U2 played the 7th Ave flatbed truck gig and supposedly headed over to DUMBO in Brooklyn to play a mini-show outdoors. I just don’t have the motivation to get out and see them but it would’ve been a treat for sure. I watched them on SNL this past weekend and they still give me the chills as live performers. They are my childhood heroes and I don’t think anything will ever change that. They have charm, finesse and sex appeal even as middle-agesters. Above anything else they’re the heart of truly romantic melancholia songwriting. For a month or so now, I’ve also been watching my promo copy of their 1985 Live Aid set. Brilliant. One of my faves off the new CD is “Miracle Drug”. You can stream the CD on the VH1 site.

The entire internet wants to know who performs that song used in the Honda Hybrid television commercial. If you know email me back? This is a sample clip: Song in Honda Hybrid commercial on TV

That band The Fray I kept pushing is signing to Epic.

I’m mostly listening to the upcoming M83 (Gooom/Mute Records) and Pitty Sing (Or Music) records. Very new wave, euro, melodic, dicey pop on both bands’ parts. Simple Minds or Flesh for Lulu fans would like Pitty Sing (NYC based). Also, if you like the cute, electro-sob sounds of Pitty Sing then you’ll probably want to listen to NYC’s Elkland (Columbia) as well.

Below is what you can expect for the 2005 year in music. It’s not an extensive list but it includes most of the major/major indie releases anticipated throughout the year. Of course there will also be a few no name major debut surprises that hit gold and platinum–but I don’t have a full multi-genre release schedule. Don’t expect any country listings either for the most part. If you’re an indie band looking to get “signed”, good luck trying to compete with these and the other 29,900 releases coming out:

Tori Amos
Ani DiFranco
Doves
Beck
John Butler Trio
Fischerspooner
Queens of the Stone Age (guest performers)
AC/DC
Frank Black
Kelli Ali
Tim Booth (of James)
Joe Cocker (covers)
Ozzy Osbourne boxset
Brian McKnight
Trust Company
Kate Bush, comeback CD
Life of Agony
Our Lady Peace
Korn
The Starting Line (2002 debut sold 300,000)
Unwritten Law
American Head Charge (Nitrus/DRT)
Black Eyed Peas
Fat Joe
hed (PE)
Busta Rhymes
Common
The Darkness
Low
American Hi-Fi
Mercury Rev
Mando Diao
LeAnn Rimes
Beanie Sigel
Zach de la Rocha (delayed still)
Athlete
The Eagles, studio CD
50 Cent
Flaming Lips
The Deftones
Ben Folds
Fountains of Wayne
The White Stripes
The Strokes
Staind
3 Doors Down
Aretha Franklin
Garbage
Gorillaz
Lauryn Hill
Hot Hot Heat
Mudvayne
And You Will Know Us By The Trail of The Dead
Ice Cube
Paris Hilton
Billy Idol
Yeah Yeah Yeahs
Aimee Mann
Gratitude (Jonah Matranga)
Mars Volta
Pitty Sing (Or Music)
HIM
Alana Davis
Ben Lee (New West Records)
Judas Priest (Rob Halford returns)
Maxwell
Ace of Base
Moby
New Order
The Darkness
Nine inch Nails
Santana
Oasis
Ivy
The Ataris
Ol’ Dirty Bastard (post humous)
The Decemberists
Stereophonics
Kings of Leon
Gavin Rossdale (of Bush)
System of a Down
Thievery Corporation
The Wallflowers
XTC
Ash
Lou Barlow (Folk Implosion)
Erasure
Foo Fighters
Tracy Chapman
Maxwell
Shaggy
Sigur Ros
Red Hot Chili Peppers
Toni Braxton
Weezer
Johnny Cash
Coldplay
Son Volt
Mariah Carey
Jurassic 5
Spoon
Blue Merle
The Raveonettes
Bon Jovi
Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers
Grandaddy
Cher
Bob Seger
Sleater-Kinney
Bryan Adams
Neko Case
Backstreet Boys
Mia Doi Todd
Babyface
Bright Eyes
Broken Social Scene
Death In Vegas
The Chemical Brothers
M83
Rob Thomas
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
Foxy Brown
Queensryche
Idlewild
Ladytron
Kanye West
Esthero
The All-American Rejects
Liars
Filter
Dr. Dre
Guns N’ Roses (?)
Jewel
Fiona Apple (tentative)
Stephen Malkmus
Jack Johnson
Lagwagon
Brie Larson
Aslyn
Ellie Lawson
Anna Nalick
Vanessa Williams (covers)
O.A.R.
Limp Bizkit
Porcupine Tree
Hot Action Cop
Blackout Effect (Lava)
The Craze
Days Away
Antigone Rising
Cam’Ron
G-Unit
Obie Trice
DMC
Redman
Jimmy Chamberlin Complex (Sanctuary)
Dog Fashion Disco
General Patton Vs The X-ecutioners (Mike Patton)
dredg
Chimaira
Vaux
Jessi Alexander (Columbia)
Shelly Fairchild (Columbia)
Trick Pony

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