Musicians' Resource Directory
Even with your half-zillion friends on MySpace, your music still isn't reaching everyone you want it to (like your mom, for instance). Don't rest until you get your single on the radio; it's easier than you think.
Locally speaking, a number of radio stations have specialty shows dedicated to playing local music. KEXP 90.3 hosts Audioasis every Saturday night, 107.7 The End and KISW 99.9 have The Young & the Restless and Loud & Local, respectively, on Sunday evenings, and Tacoma's Funky Monkey 104.9 FM hosts Garage Monkey on Tuesday nights.
Each show invites local bands to submit their music for possible airplay—you just have to know your audience. Andrew Harms, a DJ and the music director for The End, says that it isn't especially rare for a band to get added into the station's regular rotation just by sending in a CD.
"It doesn't happen every day, but it does happen. We get a lot of CDs every single day, listen to a majority of them, and play the ones that we think are good," Harms says. "It doesn't matter if it's from a major label or a local demo—if it's good, we'll play it."
However, the first mistake many bands make is burying their recording under an unnecessarily extravagant press kit.
"A lot of bands waste way too much energy (and money) on fancy press kits, photo shoots, and other garbage like that," Harms says. "What I look for is a quality recording and a quick one-sheet telling me some vital stats. An 8-by-10 glossy picture of the band standing in front of a brick wall isn't necessary."
You can read more about what not to do with your press kit on page 9. For now, remember that even starting small is better than not starting at all.
"We always have local music in regular programming," Harms says. "Some of it is bigger bands like Death Cab and Modest Mouse, but at least a couple times a year we throw music from unsigned local bands into regular rotation. However, most unsolicited local music ends up on The Young & the Restless."
Not a bad place to start—it worked for Death Cab.