Dublin based NY rocker, Brew, kick-starts 2023 in virile fashion with his fifth solo single release, WALK ALONE. Doused in jangling guitars and delivered with Brew's trademark punk swagger, this melodic pop gem belies the dark underlying theme of futile hopelessness often found in human relationships. The uplifting chorus sees a defiant Brew declare his intention that this toxic relationship will have “no more hold on me”, offering hope for others in hopeless situations.  

The single was produced by Minneapolis producer, August Ogren,  Ogren’s love for melody and the analogue recording production techniques he used to great success with Cork band Rowan, made Dublin resident Ogren, the perfect foil for Brew's pop/punk pedigree. The single also reunites Brew for the first time in 25 years with Kiwi guitarist Brett Lemmon, who brings some sparkling riffs to proceedings.

Recording took place at Dublin’s The Clinic Studios late last year with pre-production at The Bunker Studios and mixing at Camden Recording Studios Brew recalled how Ogren asked to hear an unfinished piece of work. Brew happened to have a chorus of WALK ALONE recorded acapella to voice memo while stumbling back home from a night out in Dublin’s city centre.

Originally the song poked fun at people refusing to go out post-Covid when restrictions had been lifted. The revised version is the one Ogren heard and saw the potential in. Brew thought his compatriot producer was having a laugh. However, the results are no laughing matter and with any luck, Brew will be laughing all the way to the top of the Charts.  Release day for WALK ALONE March 3rd , 2023!

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THE ENIGMA DIVISION a Irish Progressive Metal band and formed in 2019. Their debut album has finally arrived and it features eight songs that blend eclectic elements such as film score, Synthwave, and Progressive Metal. The album begins with "1977," a song that starts with a slow build-up before unleashing heavy riffs, drum fills, and Symphonic elements. "The Escapist" is a catchy and threatening song that features heavy and aggressive rhythm guitars, harmonies, and keyboards. "Echoes in The Deep" combines electronic elements, edgy riffs, and vocal harmonies with outstanding guitar leads and smooth hooks.

"Afterglow" is one of the catchiest songs on the album, melding music and vocals into a cohesive and goosebump-inducing song. "The Age of Discovery" showcases the band's Progressive elements while maintaining its melody and innocence. "Kaleidoscope" is a smooth and mellow song that provides catchy melodies and a guitar solo that will light a fire under your ass. "Clarity" is a mesmerizing song that starts with piano notes that lure you in and gradually takes you on a journey filled with gentle and charming qualities.

Photography Credits - Dave Keegan Photography

The album closes with the epic "1977 - Ad Infinitum," an existential journey through the stars and into the heavens. The song takes you on a rollercoaster ride of choppy accents, prophetic spoken words, and chunky and aggressive sounds that will leave you chilled. The album, with its impeccable musicianship, catchy and deep songs, and elements that can be enjoyed by fans of Progressive Metal and beyond, is one of the best debut albums to come out in a while. We can't wait to see where THE ENIGMA DIVISION takes us next.

Listen To Full Album


Irish singer-songwriter Olivia Burke is gearing up to release her alternative pop single ‘Graves’ on March 24th, 2023. With an eclectic sound inspired by the world around her, Olivia's music tackles the human experience and its ability to unite. A graduate of BIMM Dublin's songwriting program, Olivia's youthful approach and raw talent make her a force to be reckoned with in the music industry.

‘Graves’ is a stirring ballad that explores themes of love, loss, and destruction, reminiscent of influences like Amy Winehouse, Lana del Rey, and Billie Eilish. Produced by Irish synth-pop artist Viscose and mastered by Simon Gibson of Abbey Road Studios, the track delivers a fresh, dark, and hard-hitting alternative pop sound that is both unique and familiar. Olivia is set to release more music throughout 2023, and we can't wait to see what she has in store. Stay tuned!

Instagram >> https://www.instagram.com/oliviaburkemusic/

Facebook >> https://www.facebook.com/oliviaburkemusic

Apple >> https://music.apple.com/us/artist/olivia-burke/497911243

Pre-save >> https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/oliviaburke/graves

Olivia Burke Music · Anybody Else

Musibiz will become a Social Network in 2023 for a whole range of reasons. When I first started out with my Music campaign I launched Livemicsworld as a Social Network but it didn't have the tools I needed to assist the Artist and I closed it down two years later. Better private Social networks are available now with new tools that I believe will be very helpful to musicians here in Ireland and indeed anywhere throughout the world.

My aim from the very beginning was to provide a place where the Musician / Band could use a platform that had a community that was dedicated to promoting each artist. At the same time having a platform that provided opportunities to those that were using the services within the platform to better themselves. In otherwards, both working together to advance New and Independent Music. 

This was not possible at the very beginning and led me down other avenues including launching Musibiz and opening a new music venue in Sligo in 2015. I quickly realised that although these two were parts of the overall plan, there were many pieces missing and that was mostly community and the missing tools i spoke of earlier. As the saying goes. " you learn with experience " and during those experiences, I picked up a lot of knowledge of what was going on in the music community and why it wasn't progressing.  

I took a break for a number of years as I was tired of all the brick walls and needed a break from this project and my unstable career at the time. Over the past few years I had to readjust my life completely to fit in with what I really wanted to do and that was coaching people to find their true purpose. I now work as a Life coach and entrepreneur that involves improving lives and keeping an eye on my own so I don't get distracted like I did previously.  I also reconnected with an old friend I had living in California. John Hartmann had worked as a manager in the industry for over 50 years and was retired. I remember him telling me about his desire to educate musicians on how the industry worked so they would have a better idea about the industry and how to navigate it. We both decided to bring that idea to the public and the Holodigm Academy was born.    

So I am coming back to my old project again that was shelved for a while. I left the website live as there were a few articles up there that were useful to Artists and I wanted it available to them when they searched online for information. I believe it is now time to continue with my own desire and finish what I intended to do and that is to bring new music out and the musicians that create it. I believe that this has been stunted long enough and a new formula is necessary for this artistic expression. 

I would like to create an Independent community who are willing to find new ways to have their music heard and also a sustainable future for them. It saddens me listening to so many talented artists going unnoticed and also having to scrape a living at something they love and I feel called to help out at this time. 

I have to also say that I cannot do this on my own as I have done in the past. It must be a community effort as I provide the platform. Without the community it will not have the spark needed  to progress this project. Commitment is the Key to everything and Ideas from others will help this move along with a better flow.

So I have a few suggestions for the Independent Community of artists in Ireland. As you will be the very first country forging the new path for the rest of the world, I would like your suggestions as to what you need from such a platform if it was available to you? What missing pieces are you seeing or experiencing that I could possibly help you with? 

I will keep my own Ideas a secret for now as there are many out there that are more than happy with me providing ideas for them.  I have learnt over the years to keep things close to my chest or the original idea gets distorted in ways that do not serve the artist. There are also very good people out there that I know will assist me and hopefully the Artist community will get behind this and allow it to grow along with them. 

Anyway guys, those of you who managed to get the whole way down this blog, i salute you and would like for you to make any suggestions in the comment section. I take everything on board and will answer each comment.   

Ive known Donal Coghlan since 2013 and he has become a loyal friend ever since. I asked Donal to write a little blog about what he thought about the Independent Music Community today and also make some suggestions on how the industry could be improved from his point of view.

Independent Music Community

Donal's Feedback

I started out as a singer of covers mostly in my teens. I gave up music altogether then for 40 odd years having had my fingers burnt several times already financially I decided enough was enough . Off I went towards office work and due diligence and all that stuff. During those forty odd years in office life I learnt a lot about business and logistics. During this time working I worked for other people many times and also started and ran two separate businesses. Eventually redundancy and life in general came to me being 58 years of age and no job and no idea what to do next. Not known for sitting on my laurels I went back to college and became a sound engineer. When I turned 59, I wrote my first song, this was a major step for me. It took me out of my comfort zone. I found out very early in this process that standing in front of a crowd playing your own music is much harder than singing covers. It bares the soul in ways I never imagined possible.

So now I am talking to you as a singer songwriter and also someone with extensive business experience. I decided I wanted to give singer songwriters a place they could perform their own material . I set about doing this in a café setting as experience has taught me that where drink is involved people don’t listen to music. It plays in the background so they can talk over it mostly.

I came across two problems which stick to me every day so far, they are many ill-mannered and totally selfish musicians who do not seem to know how to behave and network with other musicians.  Secondly a public that is totally unaware and oblivious to what new music is. My thoughts around this are, they are not interested because they expect to be listening to Music known to them by cover Artists. 

Let me expand on this subject, I started and ran two separate singer songwriter nights in Ireland. One was calling the Café Sessions located in a quaint little café in Clonmellon co. Westmeath. The second one was called the Kells Indie Sessions and was located in Kells Co Meath. Firstly, I want to speak about the general public's attitude to new music. It's non-existent.  The example I would give is that when I mention I write songs that I am what’s called a singer songwriter they look bemused and say and then say something like is it country and western?

I mean in general the public only want to hear songs that they have heard before , and mostly like to sing along with the bits they know. Now the question I have for all of them is how do you think the songs they write became known, somebody had to write them and play them in little cafes and bars to get heard before. But this doesn’t seem to occur to them. 

The second problem I encountered was the musicians themselves, some totally centred on themselves and their own performance with little or no regard for anything else happening around them. No regard or care for the person who made the night happen and all the work that had to happen to make this occur. Some not all I must state hadn’t even the manners to say thank you for the invitation which shocked me.

Also, I noticed a lot of them having a total disregard for the performer actually playing at the time which means they were centred on themselves alone. Singer songwriters must appreciate each other rather than compete with each other. Above all people should appreciate the problems facing another singer songwriter. They must support each other in every endeavour possible. The world does not revolve around each individual, they are important because they were creative and wrote songs, but so also did other singer songwriters

So, to me the answers are obvious, each musician needs to learn to support other musicians firstly by 

taking the time to listen when they play, secondly in any project they may need help in. 

I would suggest in the first instance a group or society of singer songwriters, dedicated people who are prepared to help each other, after all in the old age adage if we group together, we are stronger. No Room for time wasters here me thinks.

So the more dedicated people we can gather the stronger we become . 

Now for the major gripe singer songwriters have which is airplay on the national radio stations. 

So basically, if we can’t get on the radio stations- let’s start our own. 

In my view there is no point in complaining about lack of airplay if you aren’t prepared to do something about it.

So, let’s get this off the ground, instead of sitting around complaining, let’s see some action.

I think to summarize all of this is the need for a committed community of Musicians that can encourage, assist and share one another's work so the general public has a better chance of hearing new music. To complement this, the creation of a popular radio station for both the Artist and general public. I know this is possible but it's totally in the Artist's hands as it is them that will need to change things up and change the way new music is presented here in Ireland. 

Donal Coghlan - Singer Songwriter kells

The Rnb/Pop artist George Ivanovich was born in Krusevac (Serbia) on the 23rd of March 1991. He started his singer-songwriting career on his guitar shortly after the wars subsided and had his first gig at the age of 14. Two years later he was already playing in front of a crowd of 5000 people in his hometown.

After high school he moved to Belgrade where he acquired a Bachelor Degree in Culture and Media while collaborating with various music production studios based in the Serbian capital. During the time of his Master studies (Society and Politics) he was living in Warsaw, Poland, where he was a member of No Hay Banda, an acoustic duo made with Adrian Gallardo Simon from Spain. In collaboration with the Warsaw Film Academy, he joins efforts with the prominent Polish female director Lulu Zubczynska and releases a music video for the first single of his solo music career, titled: ‘Too much is better than enough’ followed by an EP originally presented as a short film on Youtube under the title ‘Stranger’ – including the songs:
- Para
- Stranger
- Your lover
Upon the return to Belgrade he meets with Darko Dozic, the president of the international organization Tango Natural and works together on a project titled: ‘Like love (A Tango for Two)’ which was also supported by the Serbian CNN TV station. It tells a broken love story in a black and white narrative of music, dance and acting performed by the famous Serbian actor Branislav Trifunovic and actress Tamara Aleksic.

George Ivanovich has an strongly defined international musical experience, having both lived and played in countries like Serbia, Poland, Germany, Croatia, China and Ireland. He has worked together with some of the most renown Balkan artists such as Dejan Petrovic (the most famous Serbian trumpeter), Nikola Rokvic (the famous Serbian folk singer), Dragan Micanovic (sometimes known as Victor from the Guy Ritchie’s movie Rockenrolla), Lidija Vukicevic (the diva of the Yugoslavian cinema), Iva Kevra (the popular Croatian actress sometimes known as Krista from Black Sun, the popular US Amazon Prime Serbian TV show) and others.

The song ‘Mad over you’ featuring Dejan Petrovic has reached more than 600 000 views on Youtube and was voted number 1 on the Serbian National Television RTS top list. During the summer of 2019 he was hired by the Histrian Plaza Hotel to perform evening concerts for the visitors at the complex at the Plaza Champagne Bar.

The song featuring Nikola Rokvic 'It's fine' has reached more than 700 000 views on Youtube and is by far the most popular song released by Ivanovich.

George was previously affiliated with record labels Lampshade Media in Belgrade (Serbia) and Bentley Records in New York (US). Today George Ivanovich is based in Dublin, Ireland where he has released three of his most recent singles:
- Don’t look at me like we’re alone
- Dance and sing along
- Good evening, God

He is working closely with Adam McNamara as his preferred recording engineer and the legendary Fergal Davis as the mixing and mastering producer on his tracks, who has produced the likes of Sinead O’Connor and Muse. The genres George’s music tends to play with are usually Rnb, Pop, World Music and Indie Rock.

The World Music element is usually derived from his Balkan roots, however not limited to it in any way. The tempos involved are ranging all the way from downtempo to strong upbeat vibes built on poignant and melancholic harmonies. In accordance with the wide tempo range in his original songs, the natural entertainer’s solo performances capture the audience attention by taking the night from slow raptures to fast and back.

Facebook profile page: https://www.facebook.com/the.george.ivanovich
Youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtigLcOOV5l5d084S6qBdAQ
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/george.ivanovich/

Back In 2006 , I had a calling to assist the Independent Music Community In Ireland and attempt to Build an Independent artist network. For decades I had watched great musicians not having the opportunity to progress any further than the local pub or music venue. At that time I was a Pub / Venue manager and was always scratching my head about the reasons for this obvious lack of opportunity in the music industry. 


My first venture was called Livemicsworld and I attempted to create an Independent Music Network of like minded individuals that could help one another progress more. I quickly realised that the industry was seriously fragmented with disgruntled artists who had a very negative impression of the state of the industry and their chances of success. They had almost given up before they even started. 

MusiBiz & MusiBar

After gaining a little more knowledge about how the industry worked, I began another project called Musibiz and at the same time a Music Venue named Musibar. The idea behind this was to have a venue that nurtured Artists and Management in the venue and also showcase them online with the help of the Independent Music network website.

I wanted artists from all over Ireland playing there and also connect with local artists and create our own unique Independent network. 

At times I would invite dozens of artists and bands to attend a charity event called the Simon Gigs to help with the network I was attempting to build and at the same time, provide funds for the homeless. Poor Finances, Location and various other blocks put an end to that idea after 15 months. The sad thing about this was it was actually working towards the end and walking away for that was extremely difficult for me.

Irish Indie Chart

Irish Indie Chart 2017

Orestis Mammis

orestisguitar · Prometheus K2 The Bond Has Been Broken

New Careers

For the next couple of years I ventured into new careers and I became a Life coach / Business coach along with setting up a Web agency along with my good friend and Greek Musician / Web developer Orestis Mammis. These two new businesses might seem unrelated but both were helping aids that I could provide for people on a personal level and also in business.

It was about a year ago when I started to think about my previous Music Projects and I felt that I was in a better place to start yet another one.  I'm sure others who have had projects that failed, will have both fear but also better knowledge of what not to do the next time around. Some will either leave this idea for good or give it one last go with all this new knowledge. My decision was to give this another go.

So I contacted an old friend and Agent / Manager John Hartmann in the US. I asked him about an old project he was working on around the same time that I had started my first project. Like me, John had attempted this but it never really reached its full potential for various reasons. 

Back in 2009 I came across John Hartmann's website while looking to learn more about the Music industry. By then, John had been working in the industry for over 50 years and was attempting to provide a Music Management Course for Artists and Managers to understand and compete in the industry along with providing an Independent Music Network.

John felt that in order to be successful in the music industry, you needed to know the basics In Music Management along with all the other professions related to progressing the Potential Artist's or Band's. Like me, John also knew the importance of having a network of professionals around a particular act but also an Independent Community so the artists could connect with Nationally and Globally if necessary.  

In 2009, Physical Distribution was on the decline and Digital was replacing it quickly with a new music renaissance emerging. Although Digital has moved on dramatically from 2009, that same Music Business Knowledge that John was teaching was still very much relevant.

What had changed was the massive decline in Music Managers and Labels due to this massive decrease in physical sales and most of that old knowledge was lost. This had a devastating effect on the artists as the vast majority of them had no clue how the Music business worked. Social media came along and again so many artists got lost in the promise that these platforms would help them with their own promotion.

So myself and John have come up with our own solution. To teach Artists and potential managers the Business of Music by way of a Music management course and also attempt to build an Independent Music Community So Artists / Bands had support and guidance that was seriously lacking. 

Music Management Course

I am happy to announce that Musibiz and Holodigm Academy will work together this year.  Holodigm will be providing Music Management Training for artists and managers to help them understand the music industry and Musibiz will provide an Independent Music Community where they can progress. Students of the holodigm who complete the course will be given a certificate in Music management by the Holodigm Academy.

Musibiz would love to build a global Independent Music community where artists and managers will have the ability to connect with Professionals from all over the world on their quest for a greater outreach. 

Holodigm are coming to the end of creating Our Management Course and are looking for beta testers to help us improve this course. Feedback will be critical from the beta testers and for all those who assist us and complete the training will be given a certificate in music management and be the first members of our digital network.  

Please contact us if you are interested In taking the course of have a suggestion about what you would like to see and be supported in within our New Independent Music Community.                                  

Independent Music Community

More Reading


Vertigo / Little Astronaut, released on November 20th

People in a small Boat on the sea

Emerging onto the music scene earlier this year is Irish singer-songwriter Joseph Kiernan delivers his brand new offering, releasing his new single Vertigo / Little Astronaut on November 20th.

Building on his sonic style, that draws upon a melting-pot of pop, indie, folk and electronic genres; “Vertigo/ Little Astronaut” immediately hooks you in with a bold, stripped-back acoustic piano melody. With a gentle and melancholic instrumental, the indie melody is infused with rich, emotive elements of jazz and soul.

Alongside the glimmering soundscape are Joseph’s delicate and poignant vocals, that add a pure and honest sentiment to the song. As the song progresses, it moves towards a more distinctive indie-led sound; introducing a rhythmic percussive beat, and synth elements. And this gently transitions into an acoustic guitar-led instrumental, infused with vibrant electronic elements.

Quote from Joseph

“I was making music to self-soothe. My closest friend was very ill and I was struggling with the inevitability of his passing. I was hibernating from the world out of necessity, and channelled all my sorrow and hopes into the record. The music really helped me to find meaning in all the uncertainty. I found listening back to the demos at the time very comforting. My hope is that others will experience the same.”

Alongside the single release, Joseph is simultaneously accompanying the record with a brand new music video. Capturing the energy and mood of the song, the music video begins with a peaceful landscape, as it shows an aerial shot of the calming ocean. Maintaining this visual aesthetic, the video brings together a stunning montage of nature-based cinematography; with fleeting and distant appearances from Joseph himself.

Beginning his musical career early this year, with the release of his debut single “The Bees Do Not Sleep”; Joseph Kiernan has already been garnering a mass of success, and establishing himself within the music scene - with his sophomore single “Strip The Vines” already reaching over 22K streams on Spotify alone. Honing his craft and artistry, Joseph is developing his unique style, sound and song writing talent; as he draws upon life experiences to create music that is personal, contemplative and introspective.

Joseph Kiernan · Vertigo / Little Astronaut

With the prospect of more music to come, with Joseph's debut EP set for release early next year, he is undoubtedly showcasing himself as an artist on the rise.

“Vertigo / Little Astronaut”  released on November 20th.

Joseph Kiernan is available for press opportunities, please email: [email protected]


Other New Artists

10 Marketing Strategies To Boost your Music Career Is A Step By Step Guide On How To Build a Marketing Strategy From The Ground Up And Right Up To Launching An Album.

There are countless marketing strategies out there for bands and many of them are very good I have to say. I have devised my own Top Ten Music Marketing Strategies from my 30 years working experience in Business, Marketing and Music. I have placed each specifically for artists who are starting off and are looking for steps to build a solid platform right up to launching their first album.

I will be releasing a small course this year on these very Strategies. This course will help you implement each one of these Marketing strategies with me guiding you through the process. Feel Free to comment on anything. Feedback and suggestions are always good. We are all here to help one another.

1.  The Why, What & How - Description Of The Artist.

This may sound like an unusual place, to begin with, but most business when presenting their business plan must be able to clearly answer these questions before the journey begins. The artist needs to be able to have their own unique story where people can connect too. Many artists do not know what that story is and get lost very quickly.

The story is not only the music but the artist or artists behind the entire venture. The reality is people need to relate to both and many artists miss out on this from the beginning of their music campaign. Why are you doing this? What's your Story? How are you going to achieve your goals?

The second part of this is expressing this to the potential Fan. Why should they get involved with you and your Music? What is it that will make them connect with and you and come back for more? How and where can they get involved and what benefits can you offer them.

All this has to be very clear from the very beginning before any campaign is planned. In the Coaching world, this is called setting your intentions from the beginning. When you do that, you are making a statement and it's coming from the heart. The heart and not the head is where the true intentions are and asking yourself these three critical questions from there will be closer to what you truly want moving Forward.

If you are a Band then each individual should be asked to ask themselves these questions also so you are all on the same page. You will realize their intentions very quickly and will save yourself much wasted time if a member or members are not on the same page as you.

These questions are also a very good way to iron out any misconceptions of the path ahead and align everyone towards the same goal. If you can get an agreement with everyone involved then you are off to a great start.

2.  Genre Of Music And What Is It?

Over the years I have seen so many artists not knowing what their Genre is. Most will say they are a bit of this and that and get caught up in the influences that have inspired them. This is all very interesting but in my experience, you need to focus on a particular Genre. Now I know many will argue with this but this is for the fan to identify with you and what music they label you in.

Leave it to the fan to add in the extra bits. So determine what genre you are on a single term. Folk, Ballad, Rock, Punk, Country, Heavy Metal etc. Again this relates back to the Why, What and the How Description. Know what genre you are, Why you are that genre and how you have come to that conclusion.

There is another group of artists that don't seem to know what genre they are. They get stuck in between Genres or many Genres and can't quite put their finger on what suits them best. Again listen to the Fan or family with this.

They will have taken an interest in what best suits you if you are confused. Another thing, If you are confused then your Fan will be confused also and not be able to determine who you are in relation to your music. If you are changing all the time, many fans will abandon you because the direction is all over the place. Find your genre and stick to it.

3.  Connect With Artists From The Same Genre.

Connecting with artists from the same genre is a critical part of the Music Marketing process. They will have similar fans who like this Genre of Music and you will have your own fanbase that will like them also to help them also. Too many artists are suspicious of other acts and this is a major mistake.

Artists need to understand that this is not a competition but a collaboration. There are plenty of fans to go around and a Knowledgeable Musician will know this and will engage with other acts to work together for the same cause. That cause is all about the fan.

The fan is simply a customer who likes your music, likes you and wants to buy what you have to offer. It is no different than any other business. As a business, you have publicly announced that you are open for business and are looking for customers to buy from you.

Another point to connecting up to other acts with the same genre is you have just opened up lots of touring opportunities. You will be invited to perform at the other artist locations and they will have the same opportunity to travel to you. This is the quickest way to set up a touring circuit and have your music heard in many different areas and new fans.

4.  Connect Up With A Local Venue.

This is probably the most important strategy as most of your success will be revolved around this. I remember asking a music friend of mine in the US to answer a very important question. He had been a music manager for 50 years and was one of the very first Music Managers to manage the Eagles.

My question was " What's the best tip you could give to any artists or bands starting out on their Music Career. Without delay, he answered, " If you can't make it in your own back yard, you ain't going to make it anywhere ".

When I asked him to elaborate he simply told me that artists need to set up in their local community first and not be focusing on the outside at the beginning. "Master that first and the touring comes later", he said.

As a venue manager for many years, I understood John's advice very well. Many artists didn't seem to understand the power of the venue, their place of Operations. John had used this resource to his advantage all throughout his career. Its where he grew his acts from the ground up.

The local venue is where everything began. From there he could reach out to other acts of the same genre to his bands. He would invite them to perform and they would invite his band to perform at their Venue. The rest is history as he went on to manage over 100 bands. Even in this new digital age, this process Of venue and artist working together is the backbone of any success, to begin with.

I have a great Blog about myself and John and how we managed to connect with one another. Why not have a read. There is a free book you can download on there along with a whole nest of information about John. I think you will find all this very interesting and helpful as you progress in this business. Music In The Digital Age and John Hartmann 

To finish up on this point, I wrote a blog a few years ago about approaching a Venue and what to do while you are there. It all about collaboration with the venue and they will work with you to get the best results. Venue and artist is a joint venture so make sure you tell them about the Clear intention you have and you can both work together. Together you can make it a success.

REALITY CHECK FOR THE IRISH ARTIST / BOOKING A MUSIC GIG IN IRELAND. This blog was written over 3 years ago and is still very popular with readers today.

5.  Have A Super Website.

As you are not a stationary business( not including your local Venue ) the website will be your main base of operations. Its where all your information will be located. Over the years, I have seen some terrible websites which are unnecessary in this day and age. There are so many options out there now so there is no excuse for a poor website.

With the likes of Wix and Squarespace, So anyone can afford a decent website. If you are not that good at designing it, then find someone that knows what they are doing and get it done just right. I can't stress this enough and especially the front page. Don't clutter the front page.

Try and keep it minimal with a cool picture of the Band and all the tabs at the top and social links. You should have a shop set up too. Again all these platforms have this option. Any Physical CDs, Albums, t-shirts etc should be available for purchase. All you need is a Paypal account and you are set.

One of the most important features you should have is an email subscription so fans can sign up to you. Be inventive and not have "sign up for our newsletter". Have sign up and get a free ticket to our next show Or sign up and get all our freebies throughout the year. Give your new fan something and keep giving them till they trust you and you have built a relationship where they will follow you to the ends.

There is a magic in giving that few know about. Give to receive and receive to give without expectation. This is a natural law of nature. I don't want to get into any laws of attraction here but this works so be generous with any fan and you will be paid back in full and much more. The secret behind all this is give without the expectation of getting something out of it. It's going to happen anyway so don't worry about it.

Again I can't stress this enough. Email marketing is the single most important ingredient to the overall success of your entire operation. Any marketeer will tell you that its the most effective as many emails will be opened if you give a little something. More times I have opened emails from artists and it all about Me Me Me and not the fan.

You brought them over to your email list and now you want them to listen to you? Sorry but you haven't even built a relationship yet. I've had artists tell me it doesn't work and they are getting very few opened emails. These same artists haven't bothered or don't know that they must build trust and keep in touch.

I have subscribed to dozens of email lists from artists all over Ireland and can safely say that in all those years I have received less than 20 emails from my entire list I signed up too. No relationship built, no communication, no Consistency and me me me all through the email? Artists need to get this right or else you are wasting your time completely.

If you don't get this right then no point reading any further.  How are you going to sell your music with no trust built up? How are you going to sell a ticket to one of your shows? How are you going to do anything if you can't get the fan to open your email of see your post on Facebook?  It's just not going to happen unless you start communicating personally with the fan.

One more final thing that baffles me every day. People like myself doing what we do ( and they're quite a few of us around ) are regularly dismissed as a fan? People like us should be the first on your fan list and be in regular contact with. If you can't communicate with the people that are trying to help you then what chance have you got with the general public. I can answer that! ZERO. I can't tell you the number of times I have been contacted by a passionate artist who has asked for advice and have a feature on my website. As soon as the advice is absorbed and the feature page is published, this same artist is gone, never to heard off again?

Sometimes I may get the odd Generic email newsletter from one of these artists a year later with the expectation that I would open it. What would you do? anyone who shows a spec of interest in you, you should keep and cherish. To finish, go to the trouble of putting their name to the email sent and not Hi there or Howya.  Email platforms have the ability to have every individual name at the top of each email newsletter.

All you have to do is write the name in once on that platform and every email will be sent to your email address along with your first name.. When someone addresses me by my first name I will open and read. The sender went to the trouble to apply my name as this a personal touch and I like that and so will everyone else.

6.  Social Media And Targeting The Right Audience.

So now we come to social and all its misconceptions. Don't get me wrong Social Media is very powerful and has lots of advantages. Trouble is many artists cant see them. We all know from experience that most artists have a pain in their face putting up posts and very few responding. A few likes and loves, The odd comment from the very few die-hard fans and that about it. So what's happening here?

I hate to tell you but its boring and people are being bombarded with this type of post every day. Listen to my new song, my ep or my album etc. The answer is why should we listen? Have you personally Contacted each fan with the news, Have you built that relationship I spoke about in the above tip ? are they on your email list?

Have you reached out to them recently about how things are going? Have you told them how much you appreciate them personally? Have you given them any gifts to stay interested?

If you haven't done all of these things then that's your answer there. Social media is a public platform where people are being bombarded will all types of information and you are no different ( Unless you build a relationship separate to social media Via email ). By doing that you separate the real fan from the ones that give you a like to be nice.

Use social media as a source of capturing Real fans and get them on your email list. Social media has become a display advertising platform. It was created for business and not for your personal posts. Everyone's information and behavioural habits are widely available and marketed too So you as a business need to get on board and do what's best for your business.

Every post should have email signup with a brilliant offer so they want to join you. when you have them on board you look after them from your own platform which is your own website and the communication from your email announcements. That's how all businesses do their business. For artists, you can either do this with live steaming with an offer and a subscription page or a targeted ad with the same.

Did you know that you can target any specific audience in every niche possible? let's say you are a Rock band living in a certain area. You find the best rock acts all around you and you can target all the people who like their band page? How powerful is that? Imagine you have the right song, with the right offer and targeted the right audience?

What do you think would happen? Would you attract some of those people? What would you do with those people once you have them on your fan list? Would you look after them? Would you build a relationship with those people? My guess is you would say yes to all of this? So why not do this?

7.   Never Launch An EP Or Album Without Enough Fans.

This tip goes back to all the previous tips. The Cart before the Horse plan that seldom works. How could it work? The preparation wasn't done. One big night with family, friends and a few loyal fans and its all over. Years of practice, Studio time and money and then the disappointment kicks in. What was that all about? The music was brilliant, the album was classic and no one bought it only people on the night of the launch.

For many, they do this all over again and get the same results and then resign themselves that the music industry is against them and only people with contacts and money have the power to make this happen.

This is not true and is an illusion that was created around disappointment. Now I know there are also many other factors that would prevent success but I have seen this type of Music Launch over and over again. Money is not the problem. Preparation, knowledge and communication is the key to all of this.

Launch when you are ready. When you have that list of people who love your music, love you and know what you are all about. Allow then to follow you on your journey by communicating your goal and being generous and consistent with them. You must stay in touch personally and not just a public display poster or post on Facebook and all the others.

Facebook tried to capture the email market by introducing groups to their platform. It didn't work as its still public posting and not personal. I personally set up many groups myself over the years and had 1000s of followers and very few reading any post or listening to any music. Why?

Artists have the same habit there also. Display posting and not getting involved with anyone else's post or track. It's too impersonal and leads to nothing. On top of that the constant notifications when someone posts on a group. If you are a member of a few groups this you are going to be bombarded and that's just too much for anyone to take.

I hope you are getting the picture here? It's a communication problem and it needs to be separated into just your own segment of People. This cannot be done on social media unless you have a massive following but it's still it's public and has its limits. Social Media is Public announcement and public conversation and email is private communication and relationship building. Big difference.

So if you are lacking in any of the above then please reconsider or pause your Music launch till this is sorted. You should have at least 500 to 1000 fans on your list to have a realistic chance of a successful campaign that you can be proud of and remembered as a positive experience.

8.  Launching An Album.

Launching an album has to be one of the biggest statement an artist or band can make. Years of practice, promotion, marketing, touring and so much more have brought them to this place in time. It is a sign of growth, accomplishment, musical excellence and a vision to where the artist or band is going with their career. Everything up to now has lead them to this point.

Over the years I have watched the digital age takes its toll on the music community and transitioning through it has being hard slog for everyone. I set out over a decade ago to investigate ways to break into the industries secrets and allow me to show the artist what is wrong with this industry and what can be done to fix it.

On my journey, I have found many holes in it and unfair rules to make it successful for anyone. I suspect the major labels share big responsibility in all of this as they scrambled to survive in this ever-changing and now digital business format.

I have to say that the artists themselves also share in this responsibility as they became too reliant on the labels to do their bidding or marketing for them. That came at a very big price for many as they decided to concentrate on their Music and let the labels do the rest.

All communication was primarily the responsibility of their creditors who Compensated themselves very handsomely as a result of the Musicians signed contract. When digital arrived, this created a gaping hole in the Artists' understanding of the Communication and marketing process to make a Music career.

Never before was the artist faced with the job of commander and chief of the entire operation. No longer could he or she rely upon the lifting work of any label. The money for that was no longer there. Many labels closed or got swallowed up by the bigger ones who jumped ship and went where the money was in digital. So the artists had two choices. Sink or Swim for independence and do it all yourself from now on.

Opportunity for all those who dared to swim and take their place as independent artists. It was a frightening place to but liberating to think that maybe, just maybe this Independence could be achieved. No more being mortgaged out to the eye gorging labels That had capitalised on the backs of music excellent and the human expression through music.

They ran away to the lucrative Digital world to capture a piece of the pie and created their genre of capitalism and invented popular demand for the masses. The same old, same old again and again and again. the beast needed to be fed and they came up with the idea of competitions and a conveyer belt of the best talent and manipulated them into the same popular demand.

They hypnotised us with dazzling lights and showbiz to entertain and buy into this fiasco and support our desperate artist who longs for stardom. We all like a good story, a sad story, a convincing story so we connect with our young and talented stars.

You see they had all this experience from the old days. The tricks of the trade in showbusiness at its best and the doors were shut tight from anyone else getting in on the action.

Where were the Independents during this time and how were there going to respond. After all, they were the creators of this great music but no one was getting a look in. They had to learn the trade in painful steps. Steps that would take years to learn and master. That time is indeed fast approaching and the time of the independent is ever near.

They have become masters of the game that is the music business. They are beginning to see that it is possible to achieve great heights and be independent in all of this.

It's an even field when your know-how. All that's required is Communication, marketing knowledge and excellence of their god-given Art. It is there for the taking if they see the opportunities right in front of them.

Communication through their art was enough in those times but more is needed now.to connect on a personal level like the label so skillfully did for decades before. No more lost in the bottle of oblivion from the disconnect to reality and the human emotion. No more excuses to the self-isolation that was chosen with the signed contract, resulting in the supervision of all emotional communication from the outside world.

Independents have a real chance of stepping forward and Connecting with the fan on so many levels. They can lay it all out and just go for it. Nothing stopping them except themselves and the feeling that all is lost to them. It isn't and is there for the taking.

I remember when I first started on this journey and artists who were not signed and had a habit of referring to themselves as unsigned artists. This term always bugged me as It implied to me of some failure or not yet successful in music yet. I believe that this term no longer applies and Independent artist is the correct term to use.

Anyway sorry for the rant there. Let me get back to the album launch. Assuming that you have all the Steps in place in the above-mentioned list of Strategies, there are lots of ways to increase the success of your album launch.

By now you will have realized that the backbone of your entire operation is the fan and the fan list, period !. You will have already announced to them the dates and given them samples of tracks, freebies and generally a good experience. You may have also set up and some pre-order of the album through your email posts before the event.

You will have contacted radio stations ( Most of which will not acknowledge or respond ) and that's fine. Contact them regardless and put them all on a separate email list. Make sure the email is short and sweet. Email them after the launch and again short and sweet and a little of the success you had.

Digital is where we are going. we are all aware of this but you must remember that physical sales are also still relevant. Golden Discs revived itself on the back of the new upsurge of Vinyl sales.

Cds are also still there and quite popular with fans. I am one of those people who love my CDS for example.

The reason I mention this is that these two items are more valuable than you might think. Here's why. A single sale of a Cd or Vinyl has the same value as 1250 streams on Spotify when it comes to a possible Chart entry. CDs or Vinyl need to be sold in a record store registered with the Official Charts Company for consideration for a Chart entry.

Most stores offer Independents a space in their store for album sales. They are especially interested in Artists who have their homework done and have an army of fans waiting to purchase their album. Again this goes back to your fan list and all the work you did to keep your fan happy and ready to buy your anticipated album.

Make sure you ask your fan what format do they like, Cd, Vinyl, Download or Streaming. You will need to know their preference. Ask your Record store to make it available online so your fans can purchase from anywhere and not have to travel many miles to buy the album. If the record store refuses then take your business elsewhere. Remember you are offering them an opportunity and not the other way round.

9.   Lightning Live.

There is one more thing that many artists are not aware of and its hidden from you. Very little is written about it for some odd reason.? There was a new initiative brought out by the official Charts company called " Lightning live ". It was introduced to assist artists who didn't have a big following and wanted to give the Charts a go. I spotted this back in 2015 when it was introduced into the UK.

At the time I was bemused that it wasn't laid out in Ireland as the same company are responsible for both the UK and Irish Charts. So I emailed them and asked about this. They told me that this was being introduced in 2017. True to their word it was introduced but barely a word about it from our music communities here in Ireland.

So what is all the fuss about? Well, this allows any artist to launch their album at any venue and all music sales can be counted towards the Charts. That a very big deal Guys. Not only could you have your album available online for fans to purchase but also at your launch or two launches if you wanted.

This opportunity gives any independent with their homework done as good a chance as any big act out there. I was screaming about this last year and very few took any action?

Finally, I had the opportunity to speak to one of the top men in Golden discs and I asked him a very important question? How many sales would it take to get an artist into the top ten in Ireland? I was told that he had seen artists reach this with just 150 sales in one week.

I was shocked by his answer but pleasantly hopeful for independent artists to actually have a crack at this. Now wouldn't that be a very nice launch indeed? I'm sure the radio stations would like to hear about that in your second email, don't you? I wonder if they would reply? You have just proven that you are the real deal and they will want you on their show to talk about it.

It's all about the latest music news with them after all. Lightning Live Details found at the bottom of Irish Album Chart Rules.

10.   Budgeting.

The final tip I have is the importance of Budgeting. Every business needs to have a budget. So many costs like equipment, posters, recording, fuel and Merchandise etc. All of these costs should be taken out before a penny is paid to anyone. Maintaining the business should the basic focus for everyone involved. I've seen many instances where one member seems to be coughing up all the expenses while the rest look on and then expect an equal cut of the band's money at the end of the night.

This is not a good situation and will cause problems down the line. Everyone is responsible for the costs from the very beginning and that includes the manager if you have one. How many times I have seen managers pay for everything and the last to receive a penny for a job well done. Share the cost and everyone is equal and know where they stand.

Set up a band or artist account. Make a plan at the beginning of the year and put in all the costs for everything. Then divide it by 52 and that's the amount that will be the weekly cost. it's as simple as that. Whatever is left will be split evenly. If you don't meet that cost then you all add to it so the business is sustained each week.

This is not a joke guys. You do what is necessary to stay afloat and keep the dream alive. Having a budget also will keep you all on your toes and drive you to succeed. Any lacking and there will be a personal and financial cost to you each week. If you are looking for accountability then this is it.

Nothing more powerful than making the Ego accountable financially. It will shift anyone into gear and create unbelievable results. Some will fight this but if you are serious, you will be doing yourself a favour in the long run.  You must make yourself accountable and do exactly what you say on the Tin.

Ok, guys that it. I hope you enjoyed and got something from this. Please comment if you want to hear more or you have found something here that has you asking any question.  Thank you all for taking the time to read.

Sam Hardiman is a 23-year old songwriter/producer based in Dublin, Ireland. Sam’s musical life began at a very young age, taking up the piano at 5 years of age, before being granted an entrance scholarship to study classical piano in the Royal Irish Academy of Music at the age of 9.

Sam Hardiman then ventured into writing his own compositions at the age of 15, eventually debuting his original work by performing ‘His First Flight’, a piece based on the short story of the same name by Liam O’Flaherty, in Dublin’s National Concert Hall in January 2015. Music was therefore a vital part of Hardiman’s time in school, playing in orchestras and bands for school productions any chance he was given, and later encouraging him to pursue music into third level education.

Music Technology

Sam Hardiman began his degree studying music in Trinity College Dublin in September 2015. Upon entering his third year of college, he opted to specialise in music technology and eventually graduated with a first class honours degree in November 2019.Throughout his time in university, Sam worked as a professional composer and sound designer for theatre and film, with major credits including WELL THAT’S WHAT I HEARD (The Breadline Collective), B(L)OOM, (Tasteinyourmouth Productions), VIVA VOCE (Lauren Shannon Jones), and DON’T SING Original Screen Musical (IADT Graduate Showcase).

In the summer of 2019, Sam Hardiman released a collection of pieces he composed for hit Dublin theatre production ELECTRIC, written by and starring his sister Ali Hardiman, which then went on to enjoy a 4-month tour of Ireland and the U.K., culminating in a three week run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2019. Hardiman and his sister continue to collaborate through ILA Productions, the theatre company they founded and run together.

Trinity College Music Society

His musical involvement in Trinity College extended beyond his degree and his work as a sound designer, with Sam becoming heavily involved in Trinity College Music Society. In the 2017/2018 year Sam was in charge of managing all social media accounts in the society, before becoming the Events Officer for the 2018/2019 year. In November 2018, Hardiman and the Music Society held Trinity’s first ever Multicultural Musical Showcase, which earned the award for Best Collaborative Event, and earned Hardiman the award for Individual of the Year in Trinity College’s Society of the Year awards, March 2019.

‘A Strange Kind of Intimate’ marks Hardiman’s official entry into the industry as a singer-songwriter. The 4-track record was written as part of his thesis in his final year of college, entitled ‘The impact of the internet on musical collaboration, and a comparison of its effectiveness compared with traditional face-to-face collaboration.’ The first track, WYA, features the talents of New-York based singer-songwriter Alidade and Texas-based guitarist Giorgio Suarez, both of whom Hardiman collaborated with over the internet. COMPOSING MUSIC, however, was co-written with Dublin poet Anna Dalton, with THE AVA SESSIONS being co-written and co-produced with fellow producer GEF, both of whom are close friends of Hardiman’s.


Collaboration is therefore a very important part of this debut EP, with Sam Hardiman himself saying, “I really value the idea of my own style and my own musical tastes being a mere common thread throughout my work. Collaborating with different artists allows each track to exist in its own space, to be distinct from one another, and this really helps me to achieve different forms of expression and explore new territories. Not to mention it allows me to improve as a musician and is a whole heap of fun in general.”

The EP itself covers a wide range of topics, with the introspection of WYA and the anxiety PANIC ATTACK contrasting the serene romance in the penultimate track COMPOSING MUSIC, and the finale THE AVA SESSIONS offering a critique of our society’s reliance on technology, using a metaphor from Alex Garland’s 2014 film EX MACHINA.

Musical Background

Sam Hardiman’s wide musical background and the diverse range of collaborations allow for a synthesis of styles on this record, with elements of classical piano, electronic music and mellow ambience being spread throughout the four tracks.

Sam Hardiman takes the authenticity of his lyrics and his musical approach very seriously, and is quoted in saying “Although there is an argument to be made for music that speaks for itself, I’ve always found I can connect with the world of a song more deeply when I understand the mind of the writer. That’s what I’m trying to achieve with this EP I want people to understand why I wrote these songs so they can get more out of them.”

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