Monday, 18 August 2008

Music Lives On The Internet - Interview #1

Over the last few years music has found a new home on the Internet and has well and truly moved in and unpacked. There are a multitude of bands out there uploading music to their myspace pages and thousands of music bloggers telling everyone what they think of these tunes and what we should be listening to and then of course there is you, the reader, who patiently reads through our sometimes long, drawn out descriptions and recommendations. I see the music blogger role as a sort of filtering system, where we try to give you honest opinions on the music we hear. Of course, not everyone will always agree with what we write but there’s always the option to feed that back by starting your own blog or by just leaving comments - that’s the freedom of speech some of us enjoy.

So, to celebrate this freedom, I am starting a new weekly feature called 'Music Lives On The Internet' (couldn't come up with a better name) where I send the same set of questions to fellow music bloggers and then I publish their answers. I hope this will give you the reader a chance to hear about new bands, good music blogs, great venues and also give you some insight into the mind of a music blogger (potentially a scary place!) and their views on the music business.

So without further a do, may I introduce you to the lovely Abi of Stress Management.

Name: Abi Plunkett (Half of Katy and Abi, or alternatively, a third of Stress Management)

Blog/Website: At the moment our website is under construction, but until that's completed you can find us at:

What is your blog/website about?
Stress Management is basically a one stop shop for all the different aspects of the music industry that we are involved in. We have worked as managers, promoters, organisers, interviewers, photographers, videographers and, when necessary, damn good tea-brewers. The idea is that people can contact us there, whether they want to get involved in just one aspect of what we do or all of them. Equally we're always happy to hear from people who have an interest in music, or green issues, or anything that they're excited about- it's great to have a good old chat.

What started you blogging/writing?
Haha, this story somehow seems to evolve a lot as time goes on! But I believe the true version goes a little like this. Katy and I had gone to a gig, and at the end of it we met two of the guys that had performed that night. We went over to talk to them and ended up having a long chat about music, touring, the meaning of life, the universe- the usual stuff. I think it blew us away slightly just how down to earth they were. On the way home we started talking about other artists that we liked, and wondered what they were really like, as it was a completely new world to us. Anyway, we decided we were going to try to interview different musicians, and either luck or fate or something was on our side, because people started to give us opportunities and life naturally progressed to where we are today.

Types of Music you enjoy?
Oh man... I know this is so clichéd, but a little bit of everything if I'm honest with you.

I'm big into Acoustic/Folk/Singer-Songwriter stuff (although it has to be the good kind, MTV is drowning everyone with Singer-Songwriters at the moment) and more recently I'm really embracing more Blues and Grass Roots. I think everything from Rock to R'n'B to a shameless sprinkling of Pop finds its way onto my iPod.

Last piece of music that got your heart racing?
It would probably one of two songs - 'Yirra Kurl' by Xavier Rudd (guaranteed to make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck - trust me on this) or my all time favorite song in the world 'Country Stoned' by Pico.

Last gig that made you say "Wow"?
I think my answer will always be the same for this question. Every time I have seen Jason Mraz he blows my mind. The guy is going to be a legend for sure.

Where do you find out about new music?
Um, finding new music is a tricky one. Checking out sites like Room Thirteen is good as it exposes new artists really early on and you get to watch them as they grow and reach out to more fans and gain recognition.

Another really good way is by checking out support acts of artists that you like or look at who they list on their top friends on Myspace. The music community is pretty loving so everyone tries to help each other out. It's a really good way to discover artists (and waste time at work, haha), I have discovered some amazing people like Bushwalla and The Makepeace Brothers that way.

What would you like to see more of in the music world?
More ventures like the Hotel Café Tour or Music Magic & Makepeace tour.

The industry is going through a weird time at the moment so its awesome to see artists really getting into the community spirit and helping each other out - supporting each other. It really becomes more about supporting each other and the music (or magic) than the corporate side of things.

Favourite Music Venue?
Would have to be Concorde 2 in Brighton. It's a pretty small venue but they pull in some major artists. It always has a great vibe!

What blogs do you read?
Other than ofcourse, I check out http://postsecret. blogspot. com/ it was a recommendation by Jacob Golden - its pretty awesome. People send in postcards of their secrets and they're posted as a blog. It's an interesting insight to the lives of strangers.

What songs would you include on the soundtrack to your life?
Haha wow hard question. Would definitely have to include:

Love for A Child - Jason Mraz
Better People - Xavier Rudd
Us - Regina Spektor
Anyone Else But You - The Moldy Peaches
Three Little Birds - Bob Marley
Things are Going to Wait - Makepeace Brothers
Wasting Time - ALO
Miss Halfway - Anya Marina
Price to PayMates of Mine

In 10 years time music will be....
Hopefully a lot less commercial and bred to make money. Music will be more about sharing a piece of the artist and less about singing what people believe the audience wants to hear.

If you could have 3 musicians over to your place, they would be...
Xavier Rudd (are you noticing a trend yet?)
Jack Johnson
Jason Mraz

A big thank you to Abi for being the first interviewee.

If you'd like to be involved, please drop me a mail tlsreview@ gmail dot com

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