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How The Human Circuit Got National Radio Play as a DIY Band (And Why It Matters)

Image via The Human Circuit's Sonicbids EPK

In today's era of Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, SoundCloud Go, and all the other countless streaming sites, we don't think much about traditional radio anymore. However, there are still a ton of people connected to the radio scene. Maybe the major radio stations don't have the same influence that they used to, but local stations are still impacting their communities.

Indie psychedelic band The Human Circuit hails from Austin, and they've had no shortage of radio play – their music has even reached #1 on local stations. But how do they manage to get spins as a DIY band? And, more importantly, does it actually benefit them? We caught up with them to find out.

radio, Music Business 101

Dec 23, 2015 09:00 AM

D Grant Smith

Start Getting Radio Play: 5 of the Best Indie Pop Stations That Accept Demos

Photo by Werner Vermaak

There are countless radio stations out there that carry pop music with a variety of other styles, and even quite a few that blend the commercial side of pop music with the indie work of DIY artists. Since most pop music is synonymous with the commercial side of both labels and radio, pure pop stations aren't typically as accepting of submissions from independent artists. For this reason, you'll notice that some of the stations listed below feature other musical styles in addition to pop.

One thing I noticed while looking into indie pop stations that accept submissions is that the larger the audience they have, the more likely they are to require a fee for the process. It's something to keep in mind as you plan your radio budget, which is an essential part of preparing for radio promotion.

radio, Music Business 101

Dec 9, 2015 09:00 AM

D Grant Smith

Start Getting Radio Play: 5 of the Best Indie Rock/Alternative Stations That Accept Demos

Image via flickr.com

From the time I've spent in radio, alternative and rock music are the genres that I've spent most of my time with. That being said, there are many more than five great indie radio stations for DIY musicians in alternative, rock, or crossover styles to get their music out, but you can use these as a starting point.

radio, hip-hop, Music Business 101

Nov 25, 2015 07:00 AM

D Grant Smith

Start Getting Radio Play: 5 of the Best Independent Hip-Hop Stations That Accept Demos

Photo via flickr.com

As an indie radio guy, I'm a little biased towards independent music platforms that accept submissions and demos versus more commercial routes. In my experience, indie, public, and community radio stations are consistently more supportive and beneficial for reaching the right audience for your music than any other media outlet.

For hip-hop artists, the same criteria and methods of promoting your music are true as those in any other genre. What is specific to you is that hip-hop has historically been a music style that celebrates the underdogs who rise to the top, as opposed to genres like rock or pop that tend to celebrate the celebrity image of success. The rags-to-riches story is pervasive in hip-hop, with icons like Biggy, Tupac, Jay-Z, Eminem, Run DMC, and so many more surviving a rough path to find monumental success through music.

Many emerging up-and-comers like to compare their talents to these rap legends, but what helped them rise to the top was their hustle and the ways they sought out getting their music into the hands of people who would support and grow their names. This is a short list of the hip-hop stations and programs I'd recommend, in seeing how they promote indie artists and hearing their programming.

Confessions of a Radio Programmer

All images courtesy of the author

Confession 1: Mail that has no name on it comes in all the time. Yup – no contact information provided for a new album released by a band that has a good sound and potential. How do I let them know we'll be playing their music? I wish people were more deliberate in their attempts to make contact.