Online profile draws audiences
When the Rolling Stones were making it big in the 1960s it was screaming girls and raw talent that solidified their popularity.
Things are a little different in today's music world.
Unknown bands are finding it's the power of the internet and social media that are king.
‘Brit-pop' band Troubled Frank formed out of Rutherford College in 2010 and are the winners of the University of Auckland's 2013 Battle of the Bands competition. Their prize package includes a song recording at Redbull Studios worth $1500, mentoring sessions with Split Enz Mike Chunn and $500 worth of equipment.
The band members are excited about their placing but say the real challenge is capitalising on their win.
They have already self-funded an EP, music video and enjoyed airtime on bFM and KiwiFM. They also have 1000 Facebook fans and the same number of views of their music video on YouTube.
But getting airtime on mainstream stations is another challenge.
Bassist Kevin ‘Awful' Horsfall, 21, says they're hopeful spending time with Mike Chunn will give them a clearer focus.
"We learnt a lot of lessons last time. We had an album and a video but we didn't know what to with them," he says.
New Zealand on Air's music funding scheme Making Tracks is one of the best ways to break into the Kiwi music industry.
It grants up to $10,000 towards recording a song and filming a music video and has helped fund Kiwi musicians such as Gin Wigmore, Kimbra, Six60, Savage and The Black Seeds.
But it takes more than talent to set your band apart. Of the 22 criteria needed for funding eligibility, artists should have 1000 online fans, 2000 plays for an online video and 100 paying fans at any one gig.
Troubled Frank is quickly learning the value of using the social media machine.
Lead singer and guitarist Lloyd Thomason, 21, says while music shouldn't be a popularity contest there are benefits to using social media.
"We do enjoy playing in competitions but we're more focused on getting people to gigs. Not winning a competition is disappointing but what's worse is when you're playing in front of five people," he says.
Troubled Frank's next live gig is at the Dog's Bollix on Newton Rd on September 6. Visit facebook.com/troubledfrank for more information.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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