|Saturday, August 07, 2010|
It’s now a full decade since I am promoting underground musicians via texts, spam emails :D and since the arrival of orkut on social networking sites. PMR, UMR, J4Jumpy, KoolMuzone, PakiUM and others can somehow give me credit for their visitor development. In January, I was asked by an Indian Media Group to be part of their International Screening Panel for a Battle of the Underground Bands. The post “The decade long affair with pakistani underground music finally pays off” is pretty much self explanatory.
Those who know me well have an idea that I only promote young and underground musicians. Once they are famous and into the mainstream media, I abandon them. Same is the case with other promotions that I do including local technical and software products. During the screening process, one of the other judges asked me why I never took Band Management professionally. After all I have connections with both B’s, the Brands and Bands. My answer was simple and straight. “Because I love staying underground and only promote those who need promotion.”
Lately, few of my family members and friends who are now abroad working or studying sent me few requests for songs and I eventually had to make up an Online Music Repository for them. This made me think over the process again. Why bands contacted me before the age of social networking? They needed technical assistance to promote their songs online. Now things have changed with more awareness amongst us all about web tools. They have their fan pages on Facebook where they can upload music, pictures and videos. Also they can update their fans and interact with them. So practically people don’t need that “ROOFI” anymore and I am really happy things have changed for good. I remember JAL’s "Aadat". This is one of the biggest promotions that I have done in my life. The song was released in underground circles in 2003 and it took the band around 15 months to take the video to masses. That’s why Basim, on of my college friends taunted me with this. “Tu wohi ganay sunta hai jo koi naheen sunta and baad mein wohi 2-3 saal hit ho jatay hein and har koi sun raha hota hai”.
Cutting it short, one of my best friends recently convinced me that you should continue the practice even if things have changed and in fact bring all musicians on a single platform where fans can come and interact with them. So we thought about the idea of Groove Resort.
Groove Resort, a project of ROOFExpress is a social networking place for artists and their fans. It primarily acts as a bridge between the artist and music listeners. It has potential to become a powerful music community to share any music related information. Artists can register for free and share their musical experience through blogs and other sharing tools. The artists can provide information about upcoming shows, add albums, add fans, add photos, add videos (also embed video links via YouTube), create customized profile page and do other related tasks. Moreover artists can even give iTunes and Amazon links to buy the original work.
Any internet user can come onto musician’s profile page and can listen or download (if allowed by the artist/band) their work or videos. Registered listeners have privileges to create a customized profile, add photos, add albums to favorites, comment on blog, and do lots of exciting stuff.
Once you will sign up for your account, you will get to know about dozens of options that are available to you. Groove Resort would be a complete failure unless and until supported by artists and their fans so now it’s up to them how to make use of it. I have done my part so that no artist comes up to me and say “Roofi Bhai/Jigger, mera gaana and video upload kar dein and please post this as your status. I need your support to hit masses. Aap sirf apne doston ko promote karte hein.” They now have all the control in their hand with this automated system. Ending this post, I would even request the mainstream artists and bands to also consider it as an option to promote their music and show the rest of the world about the strength of our music community.