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INTRODUCING: THE BLUE ROOM SHOWCASE

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The DC metropolitan area is a hotbed of musical talent. From Marvin Gaye to Minor Threat, from Bad Brains to Chuck Brown, DC has produced many national acts that span multiple genres. While we all know and love these big time artists, Blue Room Productions wants to showcase and support talented, passionate local artists and bands. To do this, we are introducing a new series of blogs where we check out a local band or artist in a live setting and write a review about it.

We will be going to DC9, Rock & Roll Hotel, the Black Cat, Velvet Lounge, and maybe even your friend’s basement! Anywhere we can find that true DC passion, we will be there to showcase the raw talent that our community has to offer.

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SOCIAL MEDIA: USE IT, DON’T ABUSE IT

mobile-phone-426559_640Social media is crucial to spreading your message and your music, but there is a fine line between over doing it and not being present enough.

When planning your social media content, the majority of your posts should build your brand in some way. What you post on social media is how the public is going to view you so everything you post should relate back to what you as an artist represent. Whether it’s a picture of you in the studio, setting up for a live gig, or practicing, you’re giving the public a glimpse in to your artistic process.

Another smart way to use social media is to support other local bands, recording engineers, or artists. This builds a sense of community as well as allowing you to network with your peers. This can result in more show opportunities, new people to collaborate with, and even promotion on your peer’s social media pages.

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2 MORE REASONS A DEMO IS IMPORTANT

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In an earlier blog, “SAVING TIME & MONEY: “THE WELL-MADE DEMO,” we mentioned how recording a demo (of your song) was a great way to get the most out of your studio time. Besides forcing you to have the song 100% written, there are two big reason why recording a demo is so helpful.

Reason 1

The first reason is that you can send it to your engineer before your scheduled session at Blue Room Productions. This allows your engineer to hear what kind of music you play and more specifically, what your song really sounds like. With this knowledge, your engineer can make informed decisions about what microphones to use, how to lay out the members of your band in the studio, and any other details that can eat up time during the session that you are paying for.

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GRAMMY SEASON: RECORD OF THE YEAR

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ALL WORDS BY MATT SHELL

The Grammy Awards Ceremony is arguably one of the most important nights in the music industry. The first Grammy Awards were held in 1959 and consisted of only 28 categories. That might be hard to believe considering there are 83 categories for the 2015 Grammy Awards! So who decides the winners of all of these categories? Well, it’s members of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (like Blue Room Productions founder and chief engineer Conrad Osipowicz) that vote to determine who takes home the awards.

One of the most anticipated awards of the night is Record of the Year. Record of the Year is awarded to the artist, producer, engineer, and mixer of a single song. This often gets confused with Song of the Year, which is awarded only to the songwriter of a single song.

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MUSIC VIDEO FROM PRODUCER MATTHEW SHELL

If you live in the DC Metro area, you know that everyone is talking about MTS Music & DJ Flexx’s most recent release, the ‘My Baby’ Music Video. What you might not have realized is that this song was produced, engineered, mixed, and mastered at Blue Room Productions (by our very own engineering team of Matthew Shell & Conrad Osipowicz). If you like what you hear, book a session with us today.

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SAVANNAH & THE SILVER LINE METRO

Everyone is talking about “The Silver Line” right now. You may have even seen one of the new ads that is aimed at raising awareness about DC’s newest train line. Our multi-talented singing & dancing “Savannah Love” was featured in the commercial below. Check it out and add it to it’s nearly 100K plays.

Savannah is not just working on her acting career. She is also an accomplished songwriter and musician and has been recording at Blue Room Productions for a while now. Savannah started off as a songwriter along side Jermaine Crawford from HBO’s The Wire. Savannah co-wrote and provided background vocals on “Janet” from Jermaine’s debut EP “Underdog”

Her latest project is about to be released and she already has a video up on YouTube/Vevo for the single “Undivided.” Check it out and help spread the word about this great local DC artist.

Savannah began singing and dancing at the tender age of five years old. She was selected out of 2,000 girls for the role as “Young Nala” in Disney’s The Lion King on Broadway (Chicago, IL and San Francisco, CA). Since then, Savannah has appeared in TV commercials and had a recurring role in the Emmy Award winning series “The Wire” on HBO.

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GENESIS (DOMSCOTT FUNK’D OUT REMIX FEAT. KENNY WESLEY)

Released today via #SoundCloud, with an iTunes release coming at the end of the month, this genre bending dance remix is by UK DJ and Producer Dominic Scott (also known as DomScott) of the song “Genesis” originally released by music studio producers Matthew Shell & Arun Shenoy.

Domscott is joined by Kenny Wesley on vocals and a host of other instrumentalists from around the world on this recording produced by Scott in collaboration with Shell. The recording has been mastered by Conrad Osipowicz at the recording studio and mastering studio Blue Room Productions and the cover art done by Steven Discipline.

DOMSCOTT

DOMSCOTT  born and raised in the UK is a music producer and DJ based in Valencia, Spain.  His acute style focused mainly on all forms of house music has been spreading globally and his consistency to deliver time after time now has been recognized by key labels in this genre. Signed to well knows independent labels such as King Street Sounds, Loudeast records, La Musique Fantastique,  Good For You Records etc and with various Beatport / Traxsource TOP 10 Chart hits under his belt such as “Out Cold”,“Go Feat Kenny McNeil” and “Destiny Feat Aqeel.   Domscott continues to move forward and upward in his professional music career creating an admired musical identity and an organically growing global following.

KENNY WESLEY

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TIPS FOR BOOKING YOUR FIRST TOUR – PART II

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PART II: FOLLOWING UP & FINDING LOCAL SUPPORT

ALL WORDS BY Dan Miraldi

In my previous installment, I focused on leaving the safety of the recording studio for your first tour and how best to select clubs and initially reach out to booking agents.  But what happens after you’ve sent your initial emails and have heard back from no one?  What do you need to do next in order to lock down those dates?

As I mentioned in my earlier entry, booking agents get tons of emails everyday from bands wanting to play their stages.  In these situations, mastering a regiment of polite persistence is your best strategy.  Give the agent a week to get back to you and then try again.  Hold back the self-righteous indignation when writing to a booking agent for the second or third time.  You may want to say something like: “Hey Jackass!  Why haven’t you responded?”  Obviously, that is a bad idea.  A more professional approach is something like:  “Hello.  I wanted to follow up on my inquiry from last week . . .”

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JAY BROWN – A DIFFERENT KIND OF HIP-HOP ARTIST

Rick C. Brownlee Jr. (known by his stage name “Jay Brown”) is not your typical musician or artist. Jay has a serious mission to raise awareness about the foster care system and to share his experiences through the unique hybrid of spoken word and hip-hop. Stream his latest track “When You’re Torn” right here on SoundCloud, and let us know what you think! Here are a few questions we had for Jay to try and understand the differences in managing a music career which doesn’t fall into the mainstream in terms of artistic format or message. A native Marylander, Jay Brown, creates poetry books which have interactive visual and audio elements. You can find out more about his various projects on his website. Follow Jay on Twitter.

1. What was the first show you ever played?

A: The first show I ever played was when I performed for my neighborhood’s annual event: “Scotland’s Community Nite-Out”. In attendance were Suburban Hospital Staff, Montgomery County Police Department, Residents & Visitors.

2. How do you think the use of the “spoken word” in your music differentiates you from other artists?

A: My Spoken Word is different from other Poets & Rappers because I implement my “FULL-VIEW” technique were I use different Voice Effects, Sound Effects & Background Beats and/or Instrumentals to let the listener get a True In-Depth Feel for what I’m trying to portrait in the piece.

3. Do you think “spoken word” has a special ability to communicate your message as opposed to other mediums?

A: Spoken Word DEFINITELY communicates the message that I want to get across in a very creative and clear method.

 

4. What is your live show setup?

A: I don’t do many live shows but it would basically be a Good Mic, Good Speakers & and a couple of my Performance Tracks to my songs.

5. If you could have lunch with any figure in history, who would it be and why?

A: I would like to have lunch with Bishop S C Johnson & Dr. Martin Luther King Jr because they were both Great Men who have went “Above & Beyond” for mankind and were great public speakers in their day.

6. Who do you think will win the Democratic nomination for president in 2016?

A: I don’t know who will win but I hope whoever gets the spot knows what to do in the spot and lookout for the best for ALL Americans.

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NEW ALBUM RELEASE: 9 QUESTIONS WITH BRANDON TAFT (CITIZEN XVII)

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Over the last week we spent some time getting to know one of DC’s up and coming hip-hop talents, Brandon Taft (AKA Citizen XVII). His latest album, HEIR 2 THE TORCH, is a great collection of eclectic hooks, impressive lyrical arrangements and beats that make you wonder if this guy is signed to a major label (A&R reps should take notice). Check out our 9 Questions with Brandon and definitely listen to his latest album if you are looking for some upbeat songs with more than just your typical rap lyrics. This guy is thoughtful and talented. We’ll be keeping an eye on him for the next year!

1. Where do you get the inspiration for your lyrics?

A: My inspiration for my lyrics comes from a love for language and vocabulary. I love to use words and phrases that are not commonly used in day to day conversation.

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