Today we interview David Gray, David is Director of Support for Blazetrak.com, an impressive project where direct video responses are given from music industry professionals, helping new artists in their career in many ways.
MM: David, Blazetrak.com is the world’s first website that allows you to get directly in touch with established music industry experts and celebrity talent, how did you have this powerful idea?
The idea came from that fact that A&R are striving everyday to find new music. They are checking social media, going to clubs, networking, they are always actively looking for quality new music.
For an artist, one of the main ways to get in touch with an A&R was to mail them a CD and hope that someone listened to it. The artist would never know if the CD had been played and the artist would never get any feedback on why the record was not chosen, or what the artist could do to make it better. The process just ended there.
That is where the idea came from. We have A&R who are looking to find new music. We have artists who are looking to get their music heard and actually receive feedback on the record. Why not just marry the two? Blazetrak is as much a technology company as it is a music company. We saw two groups, each with a need and formed a way to get them together. This has changed the way music is discovered around the world and has allowed millions access to industry moguls they never would have accessed on their own. Everybody wins.
MM: I’ve seen submissions for Songwriters, Producers and Artists. Are there other interesting submission opportunities that help artists in their career?
Those are the main three, but you will find management, advertising, blogging, modeling and some other opportunities out there. We have had searches for video dancers, we have had lawyers and even professional athletes. We learned though that we wanted to do music really well, instead of a bunch of things moderately. Blazetrak keeps its focus on the music industry, but we do branch out into all aspects of music – not just main stream hip-hop. We have professionals searching for placements in commercials, film, video games -all styles and all genres – anywhere music is needed. By staying focused on a single industry, we hope to really make a difference here and see where that takes us in the future.
MM: Can you tell us few interesting success stories of Blazetrak.com users after submitting their material?
Everybody wants to hear the Blazetrak success stories and there are many out there. We have placed artists on major labels, many producers have been discovered through Bt and gone on to work with major players in the industry. Songwriters discovered on Bt have written lyrics that have been heard around the world. We currently have 2 artists that are getting ready to really break mainstream in the US. The big successes are fun to look at, but really every response from a professional is a success in its own. A rapper from Iowa connects with a Grammy winning producer and gets advice on how to grow – A singer in India gets in touch with a vocal coach in Atlanta and they build a relationship through social media. That is that part of our site that gets discounted. Yes, you can make it big, but even if you don’t you are getting advice from the biggest players in the industry. This does not happen anywhere else, in any other market. Only in music and only on Blazetrak. That is really what makes us powerful.
MM: How will be the future of Blazetrak.com, what are the next goals?
I think the next main goal of Bt is social engagement – getting our users better able to connect with each other. The best unsigned musicians in the world use our site. It is time to connect the producer in Ohio, to the singer in Ireland and the songwriter in Georgia and get them all making music together. Technology allows us to shrink the world. We just need to put the right talent in the same (virtual) room and see what happens.
MM: Comparing to the old traditional channels, can we say that an artist today has many more opportunities than in the past?
Absolutely. And I would never say that the old channels are a waste. It is still important to play in clubs and local venues. Artists need to build a fan base for themselves and have the experience of local, organic growth. There are still plenty of people that are discovered this way. However, with social media outlets, especially Twitter, there is no reason to not always be on the cutting edge of what is new and happening now. Music is all about re-creation and making new sounds. Because of the internet, you don’t have to be in New York, LA, of London to get discovered. A few clicks can get you heard 5,000 miles away. I still respect the traditional grind of becoming big in music – it is an aspect of the industry that will never die. You have to live hard and take risks – always putting yourself out there for your art. However, don’t pass on the new technology either. A single Bt submission could take the place of years grinding it out. You have to explore all options.
MM: What do you think of internet and music in general, how do you see this connection?
Music was created to share. It is one of the original human art forms. Music makes us social, it tells our stories and makes us unique and similar at the same time. The internet allows us to share our stories across world. We are now able to explore new sounds and ideas that where impossible to find 20 years ago. Many purists argue that the internet and digital age have killed music, but that is not true. It has just opened up a new phase of music history and theory. We are able to do things now, that where not possible before. Think about how brass and stringed instruments changed music. Think about the first time a guitar was plugged in. All these things changed music. The internet is just the newest instrument. It beings us together. It helps us create and discover new sounds and talents. I think the internet was made for music.
MM: Thank you David for this important interview, I’m sure ManuelMarino.com readers will be enthusiast of your answers and will check Blazetrak.com at once. Thanks again!