Published on June 17 2015

A Virtual Friend: "Jamendo was the perfect choice"

A Virtual Friend is an alternative pop outfit with various influences. It's a mix of analog and synthetic sounds, blending perfectly with electro acoustic rhythms to support the female lead vocals. Their lyrics explore the good and bad sides of human nature in an empathic way.

 

Hi there! We’re glad to have you on our blog! Could you briefly tell us about how you met and came up with the name “A Virtual Friend”?
 
We first wanted to build giant robots to rule the world. We came later to music because it also has a strong impact on human beings.
 “A Virtual Friend” is the nickname of our first drum machine, the brain of our project. It sounded friendly and inspiring but also very demanding.

 

 

What are your main influences and where do you find inspiration when composing a track?

 

We really have a lot of influences like dub, blues, punk, pop/rock and of course electronic music. We usually start a new track with few chords. If Valérie (the singer) finds an inspiring melody, we continue working on the arrangement. We also ask our cats’ advice, they are musicologists.

 

 

A few weeks ago you released “Paris La Nuit“, which was listened more than 25.000 times and downloaded almost 20.000 times! How do you feel about the interest around your music on Jamendo?

 

We’re really happy and it’s really encouraging. Jamendo was the perfect choice.

 

 

You chose to share your music for free under Creative Commons licenses on Jamendo. Why did you make that decision?

 

For several reasons; firstly we have a geek side and we use open source software. It was a natural choice to use CC licenses for our music. Secondly it’s important for us that our tracks live on the internet. With Creative Commons licenses on Jamendo, people can listen to our songs, share them, remix them or use them in their videos. It’s amazing.
Some people in the music industry warned us we were betraying the old Gods. In fact the result is very positive.

 

A Virtual Friend: "Jamendo was the perfect choice"

With Creative Commons licenses on Jamendo, people can listen to our songs, share them, remix them or use them in their videos. It’s amazing

 

We can see on your social media pages that you’re performing a lot of live shows, radio shows and taking part in contests. Did it help grow the attention around the band?

 

Yes of course, several radio stations have included our song in their playlists. For example, we did live radio shows on starfrosch.ch

 

 

What’s next for A Virtual Friend, any plans for the future?

 

We’re very busy. We’re finishing our 2nd album and we’re preparing for our next concerts. We hope to tour in Japan next year - it’s a country we love.

 

 

And since it’s a tradition at Jamendo: is there a fun fact about you that your audience would be surprised to hear about?

 

Our drum machine left the band to join Jay-Z and his music streaming service. Now, he regrets it but it’s too late.

 

Get in touch with A Virtual Friend!

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Written by The Jamendo Team

Published on #Interviews

Published on June 10 2015

Potta La Motta: " The world of music was opening its doors to me"

Potta is a very talented beat-maker from France, experimenting with old-school hip-hop beats, reggae, jazz and trip-hop.


So far he published 6 original singles on Jamendo, that raised quite some interest in the past few months: the most popular one, “Skibidubap”, has been listened to more than 25,000 times.

 

 

Hi Potta! What’s up? First of all, can you tell our readers about you? What’s your story and how did you start making music?

 

Hi man! I’m fine thanks! I started making music a long time ago when I was still in high-school. One day a good friend visited me and told me "I got a new software bro, you need to check it out!”. It was Logic Pro and my first steps were very abstract because I had never learnt music theory nor tried any instrument before, but I loved too much music not to try it. Six months later when I was done with high-school, I chose to attend an audio engineering school to see what was up there and that’s when the story began… Everything I wanted to know and understand with music was talked about, every question was answered the world of music was opening its doors to me.

 

 


In your music, we can hear a strong focus on old-school hip-hop beats. What are your music tastes and your main influences?

 

I like this question! I started making music during this “old school era” of hip-hop. I fell in love with the analogic tone and with the vinyl grain. These old school flows mixed with a bit of reggae vibes were awesome. My main influence as a beat-maker is Pete Rock with his deep boom bap! His album with A Tribe Called Quest became a reference for me. The choice of samples, drum flows, etc… I loved everything! I’m not staying on one type of music only, I’m really open minded about that.

 

Potta La Motta: " The world of music was opening its doors to me"

Your most listened and downloaded track on Jamendo is “Skibidubap”. It carries that typical 90’s hip-hop vibe, like Biggie’s “Juicy”. A little scratching, female vocals in the background... In your opinion, what are the best ingredients for a perfect hip-hop beat?

 

For me a good hip hop track is: drums made with my MPC layered with vinyl samples, because it’s got the warmth of the analogic sound, and the boom bap sounds perfect. I mean, if the analogic process is respected, I think that’s when hip-hop sounds really amazing. For me it’s very important but for the moment I need to save money.

 

Potta La Motta: " The world of music was opening its doors to me"

How do you feel about the interest around your music on Jamendo?

I was very surprised when I saw my downloads increasing! Jamendo's concept is very interesting because it gives us exposure with the audience we want to reach. It also allows artists to earn some money with the Licensing system.


How does it work when you collaborate with singers or rappers? Do you usually brief them on your vision of the track, or do you like to leave it open to their creativity?

I generally choose a great artist like Sika and Miss Paca who collaborated on “Skibidubap”. I often let them express themselves the way they want to, but sometimes I can interfere with their choices. Sometimes I would act like a vocal coach with some MCs when I want something specific.

Potta La Motta: " The world of music was opening its doors to me"

What is your best souvenir of collaboration with an artist?

I think the best collab' I did was “Skibidubap“, we made the track in one night (beat plus vocals). It was very interesting for us to make music like that, very freestyle spirit.


Do you have any projects for the future?

For the moment I’m looking for a job as a sound engineer or a beatmaker. I’m more focussing on a professional career than on releasing a lot of music as an amateur. I’m not working on an album project currently but I will as soon as possible. I’m working with some artists right now, producing their albums, I’ll let you know what’s up real quick! Cheers!

Get in touch with Potta!

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Written by The Jamendo Team

Published on #Interviews

Published on May 29 2015

Neil of Soundstatues: "How on earth could I get my music heard?"

In today's exciting digital music era, artists not only handle their own production, but also their own distribution, promotion, etc. The basically have to figure it all out by themselves and make their own decisions. In our very first guest post, Neil S. Matharoo, aka Soundstatues, looks back on taking the DIY road and experimenting to try to "make it".

 

 

By Neil S. Matharoo

 

It’s a great time to be a musician.

 

With modern technology, anyone can compose, record, and release music—with zero interference from shady, cigar-chomping businessmen.

 

There is a downside to this wonderful new world, however: everyone is composing, recording, and releasing music.

 

And how is a musician supposed to find an audience when there are millions of competing voices? Traditionally, this is where record labels stepped in (at the cost of owning the musicians’ work).

 

Neil S. Matharoo, aka Soundstatues
Neil S. Matharoo, aka Soundstatues

But now, record labels have been weakened to the point of irrelevance (unless you’re talking about manufactured pop music). So, the independent musician is on his own when it comes to getting his music heard.

And there’s another major problem: how can a musician earn money from his music? Every person deserves to be paid fairly for his work, even if his work is of a creative nature.

I myself was grappling with these difficult issues recently. I knew I’d written music which would resonate with many people, but I’m just a guy living in an apartment in Brooklyn. How on earth could I get my music heard?

I tried everything. I spammed social media, posted on message boards, emailed every label and agency I could find. Along the way, I found a site called Jamendo, which looked interesting. I quickly uploaded the song "Give It Up" and moved on.

A few weeks later, I reviewed the results of my promotion campaign. It was pretty dismal: nothing had worked. Most music-hosting sites turned out to be musicians just spamming each other for inflated stats.

 

But then I remembered this Jamendo thing, and I logged in to check my stats. I was expecting another failure.

I couldn’t believe it: Thousands of plays. Thousands of downloads.

I couldn’t believe it: Thousands of plays. Thousands of downloads. Fighting down my initial excitement, I assumed it was a fluke. But each day, I checked my updated stats, and there were thousands and thousands of plays and downloads.

 

Over the next few months, I periodically uploaded more of my music onto Jamendo, and two more of my songs ("Admire" and "In the Face of Injustice") got played and downloaded tens of thousands of times.

 

Jamendo is one of the very few places on the web where independent artists can be heard fairly. And if the music is good, then an audience will be found. All it takes is a few minutes to create an artist profile and upload your songs.

Here’s where it gets good, though. Because Jamendo has an actual, authentic user base (and not just musicians spamming each other), popular music will spread out of Jamendo. To my surprise, many people use my music from Jamendo as the backing audio to their personal videos on YouTube. And because Jamendo notifies its users that the music is part of the Creative Commons domain, proper credit is given to the musician in these videos.

 

Now, don’t get me wrong: it’s a real treat to see that a soccer team in Poland used my music in their video. But there’s a hidden bonus: YouTube pays me streaming royalties from these videos.

Neil of Soundstatues: "How on earth could I get my music heard?"

Jamendo has been the keystone of my music promotion. It has resulted in far more exposure than any other site I’ve used!

This leads me to my next point: Jamendo can indirectly help you earn money from your music. Yes, Jamendo offers music for free download. But as I tracked my huge increase in plays on Jamendo, I saw a parallel increase in revenue from services like Spotify, Deezer, and iTunes.

 

And with this hugely increased exposure came podcast and blog coverage, which resulted in even more paid streams from other avenues. I’ve even been contacted by various music industry professionals thanks to my success on Jamendo (I’m still independent though; I’m waiting for the right deal).

 

Jamendo has been the keystone of my music promotion. It has resulted in far more exposure than any other site I’ve used, which has had a ripple effect in other areas of my promotion strategies. I strongly suggest all independent musicians try it.

 

Just don’t spam each other for inflated stats, because that ruins the experience for the listeners! If your music is good, it will find an audience on Jamendo.

 

Neil of Soundstatues: "How on earth could I get my music heard?"

Published on May 20 2015

Mirva : "Staying inspired is the key to life"

 

Originally born in Sweden, Mirva now lives in Sydney. She recently released her second EP Get Ready on Jamendo. Her first EP One was critically acclaimed and ranked her #4 in the Australian Independent Music Awards (AIMAs) out of over 5,000 entries.

 

"I want to create feel-good, inspirational & serotonin-raising musical experiences”, she says. Under the Mirva umbrella, I strive to make music that is good for the soul with a positive approach aimed to inspire and spread happiness in our world."


One achieved tremendous success on Jamendo and Mirva returns with new songs that channel the same vibes that got her popular in the first place: happiness and energy.

 

 

 

  • Hi Mirva! It’s a great pleasure to have you on the Jamendo blog! We already know how awesome you are, but just introduce you to the entire community in a few words!

 

Hi there! I'm Mirva. I'm a singer/songwriter, an author and a holistic entrepreneur. I am passionate about making feel-good music and spreading happy vibes onto the music scene.

 

 

  • Your first EP on Jamendo was downloaded 18,000 times and listened more than 400,000 times, congrats! How do you feel about it, generating that much interest in your music?

 

Amazing! It's been great to generate so many new fans and such tremendous recognition. I'm so happy people are connecting with the songs and the message.

 

 

  • Did such exposure and success result in anything for you as an artist?

 

It's done many things. First of all, people have been using my music all over the internet for their video clips, podcasts etc which has been really heart warming. Seeing "I Am The Sun" on wedding videos or "This Is How We Stand" in a  beautiful nature clip for example really warms my heart. I have also been contacted by quite a few media outlets that are wanting to use my music in several ways which has been really cool. The most important thing though is that it has really given me the positive feedback I needed to get inspired to go on. All the amazing comments and reviews from the Jamendo community has been truly good for the soul so, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

 

Mirva : "Staying inspired is the key to life"

 

  • Let’s talk about your brilliant new EP, Get Ready. What is the inspiration behind these new songs, musically and lyrically?

 

Get Ready really is a natural extension from the last EP "One" which was inspired by the idea of oneness and connecting to your inner self. Get Ready is about stepping out on life's stage and into your own, standing in your own power. It's about being proud and owning all that you are. As the lyrics of the feature song say: I'm ready now, so hold on, don't try and stop me."

 

 

  • Do you collaborate with other musicians, for writing and producing your songs?

 

I do co-write at times but not that much. I feel writing is a real personal thing for me. I quite enjoy sitting alone by the piano and let the music take me wherever it wants to. It's kind of like a meditation to me. When it comes to producing though, I always have someone working with me. On the last 2 EP:s I have been working With Braddon Williams which has been amazing. His expertise when it comes to executing my ideas is extremely valuable. We have lots of fun producing together.

 

Mirva : "Staying inspired is the key to life"

 

  • Could you share with us what an ordinary day in Mirva’s world looks like?

 

Well, it differs a bit as I like to stay creative but most days I start and end my days with a meditation. I have been doing that for years now so it's as natural as brushing my teeth. Meditating puts me in the right state of mind for the day. I also try and do some form of physical activity every day as I find it makes me feel great and I religiously watch or listen to something inspirational every day like a podcast or a youtube clip as I find it feeds my soul. I don't watch the news or surf TV channels really at all. I find time is too valuable to watch stuff that doesn't make me feel good.
I have a very flexible job that allows me to honour that in everything I do so I feel very blessed. I can't write songs and promote positive change unless I am at a positive place from the inside out myself so making choices that supports that every day is priority number one for me.

 

 

  • What are your future projects?

 

Well, at the moment I am incorporating some more juice into what I am already doing and promoting. I am a HUGE believer in Positive Psychology and helping people connect to their greatness and creativity from within so I am doing a few workshops around connecting to your creativity this year. I have also just created a session for a new App called MindPT which is really exciting! MindPT is a personal trainer for the mind in the form of an APP and my session, called Mad About Life, is created to help people connect to their inner fire and creativity. MindPT is in my opinion the BEST new self-development tool on the market out there and I am so excited to be part of it. After that, I'm sure a new EP will be on the cards, music is never too far away. As I've said many times, writing a song is like finding a friend that knows exactly what you need to hear, and who wouldn't want more of that in their lives!

 

Mirva : "Staying inspired is the key to life"
Mirva : "Staying inspired is the key to life"

Get in touch with Mirva!

Jamendo

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Written by The Jamendo Team

Published on #Interviews

Published on May 20 2015

Written by The Jamendo Team

Published on #Videos