I immediately loved this song when it came out. You know, I didn’t think I’ve noticed until now, but take a look at all the names involved in this one song! Wow, you need several people to make a hit song? That’s why nobody can make money, because every single person involved wants their cut!! But, I digress…… Any whooooo. “Through The Fire,” released on 1984 became one of my most favorite Chaka Khan songs. Now, it’s funny because, chart wise, the song didn’t do that well. It hit its highest at 15th position on the Hip Hop/R&B Charts; but on the Top 100 Chart, its highest peak was 60th position. I’m kinda in disbelief, because in the Black community this song was very popular back in the day. It’s hard for me to think these numbers were that low. Maybe it ranked higher in another category?
I just got an email yesterday from SoundCloud that said artists can now make money on their service! I was very happy when I read this. Now, I think it’s important to note that they’ve used the phrase “SoundCloud Premier Monetization.” Which means artist are not being paid royalties (unfortunately), so I’ll have to assume they must be doing something similar to YouTube with ad partners. This is interesting, because every time I’ve played music on SoundCloud, I haven’t noticed any ads. There’s some good music on SoundCloud! I mean, you sometimes have to do some digging, but it’s worth it when you find a gem you really like!!
Hi guys… I wanted to quickly share a conversation I had with someone, on one of those music web forums recently. Now, I want to reiterate that my opinions are from the standpoint of being a blogger, music fan since birth, a collector, my years of retail experience, and someone who USED TO purchase music (I do acknowledge being an actual artist is a whole different ball game).
I always seem to bump heads with artists from Bandcamp. An artist threw out a question “what are some of the ways he could promote himself better (something to that effect).” I don’t remember what I’ve written verbatim, I really didn’t think it was worth going back searching for it. However, I do remember getting a negative response back to my answer. He got so defensive, and told me how he was in a band, and they promoted his group by distributing CDs, and got their music playing on college radio. Blah, blah blah.. I told him that was amazing, cause I don’t remember how to even use my CD player. In fact, I’m sure if I walked around with my CD player on the train, people would look at me very strange. It totally didn’t occur to him that they accepted the CDs cause he was already in a college, with computers that have built in players. Today, I doubt anyone wants to carry a CD in their pocket! Not happening. Dude…. You need a serious social update!!
So, to make a long story short. I’m beginning to think that Bandcamp is for those old artists who just can’t let go of the very old business model. They still think they’re gonna make it big with selling CDs from the back of their truck. I want my readers to forward this article to any aspiring music artist you know. It’s important for artists to realize that by the time you publish your CD on Bandcamp, it’s already on YouTube. In other words, CDs are no longer a viable source of income. I’M TELLING YOU AS A MUSIC FAN…. NO ONE REALLY PURCHASES MUSIC ANYMORE!! Even the few that still do purchase music, a significant amount of their entertainment still comes from YouTube. Second, do you guys have any idea on just how easy it is to RIP something from YouTube? It literally takes less than a minute to encode an mp3 from YouTube. I know it’s hard to hear, but you MUST encourage your future fans to use music streaming. Put spotify codes on the back of your business card and distribute it. The people that still purchase CDs are a very small minority!
I found this reggae gem a couple of years ago by accident. I don’t remember where I heard it, but let me tell you, I LOVE THIS SONG!!! 😀 Pauline Catlin, Caron Wheeler and Carol Simms came together to form Brown Sugar. I was really disappointed that Spotify did not have these three talented women in their massive library (come to think of it, it doesn’t appear that any streaming service has it). But, I’m not surprised. This song is extremely rare, so unfortunately I have to direct you to YouTube. This reggae song is too sweet not to share with you guys. Brown Sugar reinterpreted their own version of Barbara Lewis’s mega hit “Hello Stranger (1963).” Barbara’s song hit #3 on the Top 100 Charts. Now, I love Barbara’s version, but, when I heard Brown Sugar’s version of “Hello Stranger,” that was released in 1977, I went bananas! It’s so amazing how a song can be transformed with just a little bit of reggae magic. They song barely received 1.2k Shazams. However, YouTube plays I estimated over 500k.
I know I’ve written about this awhile back, but I think it’s worth mentioning again how great soundiiz is. I’m not on a mission to promote them by any means. However, it is an important tool for people who heavily use music streaming. Obviously there are many different flavors of music streaming; and whatever type of personality you have, there is a streaming service that will fit your needs. Be it paid or free! So, what is the benefit of using something like soundiiz? To convert playlists from one platform to another! Well, why on earth would we want to do that? One huge reason is because most of us (even those with the least technical ability) who are streaming savvy use several online streaming service, but have one main preferred music source. For example, you may like to use the FREE version of Spotify, and maybe you like to also use YouTube, and SoundCloud. But your MAIN music source is iTunes. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t save playlists of songs they love, in whatever platform they’re using. At some point you’re gonna want to bring those playlists together, and share them across the other platforms your currently using. OR, you might be trying out different streaming services to see which paid service you like best! Best of all, soundiiz is FREE!! It is not really necessary to purchase a subscription, unless you are one of those people who need detailed reports about everything. Just give it a try. It’s one of the most important tools every digital music consumer (literally) should know about.
I should remind to my readers that, there will always be some songs that the other platform will not have. This is true especially when converting playlists from SoundCloud, those are often either customized edits & remixes, OR, artists who (for whatever reason) chose to only promote themselves through SoundCloud.
Let me tell ya’ll young people something….. Taylor Dane was (and still is) one of the best & baddest vocal musicians that ever come out of the 80s generation! I don’t even know what category to put her in, because she sings all kinds of music; pop, a little rock, r&b, everything! Her voice is truly a powerhouse in my opinion. I remember watching an interview where she told America she originally was training to be a classical opera singer. Well, if you’re familiar with her music, you would never believe it if she didn’t say it! Taylor cranked out many hits, and one of my favorites ballads on the top of that list is a song called “I’ll Always Love You,” released in 1988. This was my jam! This was most people’s jam!! The song hit #3 on the Hot 100 Charts, and stayed relevant for 30 weeks! Her music really spanned all races, case I heard EVERYbody singing this song! Another amazing ballad was a song called “Love Will Lead You Back,” released in 1990. The song hit #1 and stayed there for a week. I didn’t know any Black person that wasn’t playing these two songs to the ground back in the day. Other hit favorites include: “With Every Beat Of My Heart,” “I’ll Be Your Shelter,”
The above has always been my favorite photo, because for some reason she reminds me so much of Milla Jovovich from the movie Resident Evil. In fact, you can really see the resemblance in her “Love Will Lead You Back” music video. Throughout Taylor’s career, she has sold over 75 million records and won 3 Grammy(s). Almost 40 years later, this 80s legend still continues to perform! I want you to check out some of her extended remixes. I just heard these for the first time today. “With Every Beat Of My Heart – Mental Dub,” “Tell It To My Heart (Club Mix),” “Don’t Rush Me – Continental Dub House Mix.”
This particular song is very personal to me. This song takes me back to my fondest memories with my grandpa. He use to play this group all the time, and it also happens to be one of my many many favorite classic calypso jams. The song is called “Ring Ting Ting,” by The Merrymen. I had trouble pinpointing the release date, but I know it had to have been the late 60s or early 70s. The dates that currently appears I think are “digital release dates,” or “re-release dates.” This was a very popular song, and although there are only 329 Shazams recorded (at least the song off this particular album), the group itself received over 10k Shazams. That is amazing! That means in this day and age, people still remember them! It also means that older folk are finally using technology, ’cause ain’t no young folk interested in this song! Just being honest 😀 I found this song to be so hilarious, because we mostly heard songs from women about their man giving them material things; but with this song, the woman wears the pants in the family, and the roles are reversed. LOL. The Merrymen are from Barbados, and released quite a few songs. However, Ring Ting Ting, was the only one I remembered growing up.
Ok. I was going to wait a couple of days before I’d publish this, but I said f*ck it. It’s not like I have a limited amount music to write about 😀 I was skimming through my list of songs I want to write about and decided on one of the very few old school hip hop groups I USED TO like. They’re called the “House Of Pain.” Do you remember these guys? I say “used to like” because their music went from fun dance music to street gangster (which I’m not a fan of). They were really hot in the early 90s. Actually, to be honest, I only favored this ONE particular song because it was more like dance/party music than hip hop in my opinion. The song was called “Jump Around,’ released in 1992. I heard nothing like it before. It was like my body was forced to move and dance on it’s own when I heard it. I think you can still rock this song if you had a 90’s party. I lot of non-hip hop fans used to dance to this too. I found this club edit by Micky Slim. It sound kind of hot, it’s like an EDM version remix.