Friday, June 5, 2015
This past Sunday, I had the pleasure of interviewing Gospel Rapper, D'aych (Daniel Harris), straight out of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. By the way, if you didn’t already know, D'aych is pronounced D.H. It wasn’t the first time, I was granted the opportunity to converse with this intelligient, focused, purpose driven, very hands on every aspect of his career artist. But I do declare, this time, I noticed there is something very special about D'aych, which distinguishes him from the host of Christian rappers we find introducing themselves to us everyday on Facebook, and vying for our support of their projects. D'aych does not adhere to any single dropping or album production schedule to please the crowd, as a recipe for success. Futhermore, he does not rap lyrics which are acceptable by all leadership of all religious organizations. In fact, he has been advised by some members of the clergy to tone down the audacity of the message he is attempting to deliver. A few have even gone so far as to say, if he does not make his message more palatable to the conservative Christians ear, it might cost him his life. However, for D'aych only God can determine when a man’s work on this Earth is done, therefore he allows The Holy Spirit to be his guide at all times.
D'aych has a new project he is promoting, but he is such a multi-faceted individual, I really don’t know if I wish to start out this piece talking about the album or his philanthropic connections. Let me get back on topic with the album review and then I’ll be more than happy to tell you all I know about the man.
Dyach’s latest project, “The Movement Music” (a mixtape), was crafted to encourage people of all races, who feel as though, the constant show of extreme force used by the police against people of color, equates to our civil rights being revoked. “The Movement Music” pays homage to the leaders and active supporters of the Civil Rights movement, by giving us some of that Marvin Gaye and Donny Hathaway flavor on the production side, but is coupled with a chilling reminder of the severity of the nation’s color divide, when the names of recent victims of police brutality and killings are mentioned. How’s that for a dose of reality and nostalgia all mixed together?!
Like many of the secular rap artists you may already be familiar with from back in the day, D'aych actually has quite a way of weaving his words together to blend, the perfectly crafted story he raps into the listener’s ear, admonishing him or her to take heed to the word of God, and strive to be more Christlike. As told by D'aych, there are a lot of young people in our nation today, who have been affected by news of other young people, who have been killed and attacked by the police. Often times, when brought to trial, the police officers stand before the jury and judge, stating the reason behind their fusillade, was their fear of being killed by the now dead victim. Our youth need direction; something that makes sense and doesn’t cause them to destroy themselves, with misdirected anger.
Personally, the song which grabbed me from the “The Movement Music” mixtape was “Bang Bang”. Wow...I was instantly caught up. It was an early, Wednesday morning, when I received the link via text message, however, I waited until late in the evening to give the song another listen, as well my full attention. You know how it is, it was super late and obviously time to bed down and prepare myself for the following day, however, I chose to plug my earbuds in my ear and reconnect with D'aych’s ‘Bang Bang’ banger. In an instant, a fire deep within me was ignited, and my sleepiness escaped me. Honestly, I was ready to call D'aych in the middle of the night and ask what I needed to do to enlist in his “Movement”. I believe you will feel the same when you listen to it.
Many of us are not in touch with hardships people in other countries endure regarding healthcare. But because of D'aych’s association with Pastor Kako, who was born in Kenya, as well as his mother’s missionary visit to this land, he had firsthand knowledge of the unnecessary deaths of people who had taken ill, but had no mode of transportation other than their feet, to get to town and receive care. Our brothers and sisters in Kenya were attempting to travel 70 miles on foot, while they were wounded, in labor and to get a diagnosis for illnesses they had no knowledge of how to treat. As you can imagine, there were plenty of deaths along the side of the road, as people succumbed to lack of much needed medical attention. One of D'aych’s many goals for the summer of 2016 is to visit this clinic.
Before we close our piece, we want to share the latest news with you about our artist. D'aych has finally answered the call of God and will be attending Rhema Bible Training College this year in the state of Oklahoma! His decision to go was based upon some obvious divine intervention, made crystal clear by individuals who were already in his life, as well as a Prophetic pastor by the name of Pastor Aguilar. One of his friends walked up to him one day and said, “Hey Bro, I'm getting ready to go back to school. You should come Bro.”
We want to thank D'aych for being so kind as to grant us the opportunity to speak with him about his latest project and ministry. If you wish to enlist in the movement (smiling), by buying a copy of “The Movement Music” mixtape, please go to www.DaychMusic.com and the music will be sent directly to your phone. This way you are dealing directly with the artist because there is no middleman. Also, you don’t have to worry about where your money is going, because this man is on his way to seminary school.
Written by Arielle a.k.a. Determinator1
Wednesday, December 26, 2012
I am sorry, that I don't have a pic for you, or more information on the brother from Jamaica that left me this message on Friday. It is sooooo beautiful I couldn't keep it to myself. Yes...I'm sharing. We will have to find out more about his ministry so we can give you all the details. I've always said, some of the sweetest voices I've ever heard in my life come straight out of Jamaica, one of the poorest islands on the planet Earth. Lord have mercy upon each and every one of their souls. I know they are struggling.
Here's a snippet for you, so you get what I'm talking about:
Arielle a.k.a. Determinator1
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
Today, we here at UGTKONation had the pleasure of interviewing up and coming, gospel rap artist, Countre Boi from the Pine Mountain, GA. Now it could very well be you’ve never heard of him before and the name is totally new to you, however, this is not Countre Boi’s first attempt at becoming a successful rapper; about the only difference this time, as compared to his first try is, this time he is putting God first.
Back in 2003, Countre Boi connected with two aspiring rap artists on his job when he was working at a plant. During one of his lunch breaks, he noticed one of his co-workers writing, so he approached him and introduced himself. He let him know he was also an aspiring writer, and thought it would be a good idea if one day they got together to write sometime and maybe even form a group. After mentioning this, his new friend told him he knew of someone with some professional recording equipment that might be able to help them put it all together. The story of how things came together in the makeshift studio is a rather funny one. None of them knew how to operate the sophisticated tools they had, but they knew green light on the equipment meant they were doing something right, as opposed to a constant red light meaning they still needed to figure it all out.
When I interviewed Countre Boi, he indicated to me that he didn’t feel comfortable rapping about what the Trap County Boys were rapping about. They were talking about drugs and hustling, and that wasn’t a lifestyle he was accustomed to, he was always a church boy like his name indicates. Now of course I had to ask him if he actually knew what “trap boy” meant, and if so, why did decide to become a member of the group? His response was that although he was in the group, he made a decision to not rap about those nefarious situations the other two members in the group expressed. Of course this situation weighed heavy on his heart, because he felt as if he was a hypocrite, and as a result, he eventually left the group.
Countre Boi’s 2nd attempt at becoming a rapper was roughly around 2005/2006. We didn’t discuss too much about it, but he did say it was during this time he really had a desire to rap the right way – For God! But the main thing is this, his 3rd attempt at being a successful rapper is now, with the album he released on June 22, 2012, entitled “Refined”. I have included below, for your review, a snippet of one of the first tracks released from the new album entitled, “Praise Break”. Please let us know what you think, and pick up a copy today at http://Countreboi.bandcamp.comWe here at UGTKONation wish him the best, and hope he becomes as successful as he would like to be in this industry. He as well as the other contributing artists on the compilation have our prayers.
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
I have come to the conclusion by way of my interactions with numerous "so-called" Christian friends on Facebook, that there is no such thing as gospel music/christian music, in the traditional sense, once a person has bought into doing all types of scheming they can think of to increase the popularity of their project. Also, if your daily manner and actions don't line up with the life of a true Christian (in terms of being Christlike), sad, but so very true, I want nothing to do with you in the area of promoting something with no true meaning behind it.
Our new direction for the remainder of the year and beyond, is to promote that which is positive. I can tell you right now, there may not be a mention of Jesus' name as often as you like, and then again, his name may not be mentioned at all.
Christianity is not a title you wear on your sleeve, but like Islam, it is way of life.
Thursday, November 15, 2012
Recently, I teamed up with DJ Ronnie Ron @ronnieron2k to offer a promotional package to primarily Holy Hip Hop artists via his show entitled, "Hip Hop Praise". DJ Ronnie Ron has been running his show on a shoestring budget for 7 years (via terrestrial radio) and 2 years (internet radio). Not once has he ever asked an artist for a single dime, and very rarely have artists approached him and told him they wanted to bless him with anything.
When DJ Ronnie Ron approached me about the idea of charging a tiny fee for interviews, I thought it was a great idea, and extremely affordable. Basically, yours truly would do the interviews (pre-recorded) and a write up here and DJ Ronnie Ron would play it back 9 times on his 9 shows, which would be at least 15 minutes long. For an introductory fee of just $20, I thought it was the BOMB! You don't have to be a Statistician to figure out, that it actually works out to be a little over $2.00 per show. Wow...you'd think people would be knocking each other down to get their money in the quickest, so they can be one of the first to be aired. Unfortunately, not all of the conversations have gone very well.
Insults have been hurled and the word PAYOLA has been put out there. SERIOUSLY?! Question: When did $2.00 become PAYOLA. Here's the other one: I will see what I can do. I have a family to feed, you know? (Really, off of $20? Are you the family you speak of?) And another thing, the DJ doesn't have a family? I'm confused.
Here's my thinking - If you go into the studio and lay down your tracks, then get it mastered, then pay money to get it pressed up, what would make a person think it would end there. YOU NEED TO COME UP WITH SOME SORT OF BUDGET.
The interview I posted recently on the internet radio stations kept pushing this one thing home: RELATIONSHIPS, RELATIONSHIPS, RELATIONSHIPS!!! Picture this: the station has100s of songs to choose from; aside from those which are requested regularly (a handful), it leaves the DJ with lots of songs to choose from. So where does that place your song? I'm just saying.
People have assumed, because they can't fathom the idea of paying to promote themselves that their music will be taken out of rotation. Well...I can't speak for Ron, but I will say this - if a person has 100s of songs to choose from and you have no relationship with them.; in other words, you are not promoting the station in any type of way, by posting any of their flyers on your FB page, or Tweeting to friends and family when your song is being played, what do you think will happen?
Without a DJ, getting a solid footing in the Indie Artist arena is Damn near impossible. Even major artists set aside a budget for radio promotions. It's not possible for you to build a relationship with every station at the same time, so I will reiterate from the previous Internet Blog, choose a handful at a time to run promos for you.
That's all I have to say about it. In a future blog, if given permission to do so, I will run a list of extremely low rates some of the internet radio stations are advertising, and you can take it from there. Trust me, I know that feeling when you produce something and you say to yourself, nothing else compares, but I want you to be well informed about how it really goes out here.
Thank you for allowing me to step up on my Soapbox and share my thoughts with you. We want you to post comments on this particular blog. Share your thoughts. Radio station owners and artists, we are trying to hear back from all of y'all. We need to dialogue on this. If you feel as though one of the stations has treated you unfairly, please share so we can try to get it straightened out.
Blessings to you and yours!
Arielle a.k.a. Determinator1
DJRonnieRon is always Looking for new music (not because he is dumping them if you don't go with the promo pkg. lol) to keep the program hot. Hit him up on Twitter @ronnieron2k
The Texas Gospel Announcers Guild will be taking place Nov. 22-24. Yours truly will be speaking on Saturday as a part of the Indie Artists 101 workshop. For further details and to get registered, please click on the flyer below:
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
I'm going to try to make this as simple and straight forward as it can be, then I'm going to ask you to follow the screencast. Let's face it folks; what good is it to have a Twitter and no one is following you. It's the same as talking to yourself. There's a huge community out there, it's your job to FOLLOW THEM, and have them FOLLOW YOU BACK. I don't believe in paying for FOLLOWERS, although I have been tempted quite a few times; actually, it can work out to be rather expensive. Picture in your mind the story of the Tortoise and the Hare. You are the Tortoise, and if you remember, it was slow and steady that won the race.
@TWITERHERO - I just found them today through my friend Jenny. They got some #TEAMFOLLOWBACK tag teaming action going on. Like anything else, check out the profiles to see if you have anything in common and FOLLOW. When you follow the people in this group, they will FOLLOW you back immediately. No exaggeration, about 10 people from the tag team followed me today, but my buddy says, on average, about 20 people will follow you a day.
Okay...here's a song for you to get you in the mood of FOLLOWING PEOPLE and waiting for them to FOLLOW BACK. (Where my Christian House Heads at?)
Okay...that about does it for me. If the @Twiterhero works for you, please be sure to tell a friend and help a Sister out over here on the blog. I need YOUTUBE subscribers FACEBOOK FRIENDS and FACEBOOK LIKES and OHHHHHHHHHHH...TWITTER FOLLOWERS . Also, while I'm getting my Keith Sweat on, please be sure to G+1 me on the Right and at the very bottom of this particular blog. Last but definitely not least, JOIN the blog. Pretty soon, I'm gonna shut it down up in here, and unless you've already JOINED, you won't get the info. Sorry :( but I need y'all to stop peeking, and come on in.
May God Bless you until the next time. We love hearing from you, so please leave us a comment.
Arielle a.k.a. Determinator1
Thursday, October 25, 2012
A wise man once said in so many words, "At the end of the day, it's not about how many connections you make, but rather relationships you build." (Chip Mathews - @chipmathews, if you are reading this, I hope you don't mind me borrowing your Twitter post again.) With all the clicking and adding of Facebook friends and Twitter followers daily, throughout the day, how many of those clicks are we turning into relationships. At the rate many of you are going, slowing down to take the time to really get to know someone, seems totally inconceivable. However, if you wish to stay relevant in this industry, which it becoming more and more competitive from day to day, there are two types of relationships, you want to work on consistently - Relationships with your radio stations (terrestrial and internet) and Your FANS! We'll save the FANs for a different blog and roll into what you need to watch out for with the internet radio stations.
I was blessed to be able to interview 3 different movers and shakers in internet radio, and sort of serve as the mediator between you (the artist) and them. I spoke with Kevin James, Program Director for CJBRadio.com
Now let me tell you something, IT DONE GOT REAL with some of the more popular, gospel, internet radio stations when it comes to artists not checking in with the stations after pressing the send button to email their their mp3.The WELCOME word on the welcome mat, is starting to fade and less folks are getting a chance to step on it. Every now and then, if you're in some of the internet radio groups on Facebook, you'll see an outburst/announcement/rant about how UN-supportive, indie artists can be at times. Okay...the bottom line is this, unless you are Mary, Mary or Kirk Franklin, sending your song off to internet radio with NO FOLLOW UP, means NO AIRPLAY. Okay...maybe you got lucky and they snuck your song in there; well...keep in mind, it's just as easy to pull it. Believe that! It happens everyday.
I interviewed Kevin James, of CJBRadio.com first. Now I absolutely love talking to this man. He is so smart and loves sharing his knowledge with people he knows will take the information and run with it. (How am I doing so far Kevin? LOL!!!!!! Oh well...just call me the town crier! I can't keep all this insider info to myself, because I know it is going to benefit you.)
Well...with an estimated 25-30 submissions per day, you'll be surprised to know less than a handful of those get put in rotation. Why? Look...let me ask you a question first? Why would you send a song over to a station and instead of tagging the song with its proper name, you have it tagged as Track 1, 2,3, etc.? I don't know if you got the memo or not, but you ain't finna get paid for those through SoundExchange, or nobody else. Make sure your song is properly tagged! And another thing, if you produced the song in a newcomer's studio, expect it to sound like that. Keep in mind that it is not possible to go from an FM Station to AM and not expect the listener to know the difference. What will they say when the DJ goes from Tamela Mann to your song? Oh I know. They are going to switch to another station in a heartbeat.
Kevin reminded me of something very important when I was speaking with him. We all must remember, advertisers are happy when folks are tuning in. Content is what keeps the listeners locked in and the advertisers want to make sure their ad is heard. If you got a track (labeled I must add (LOL)), the listeners are asking for, or sitting by their computer waiting for it to be played, then you are on your way. According to Kevin, and he was just stating the facts, "Radio doesn't care about your song. It's just content for their advertisers." If you can get this in your head, then you are definitely on your way to WINNING big time!
Now once your song has been selected for that rotation, you need to keep in touch with the station by calling or emailing every two weeks. Ask how you can get more spins and exposure. Find out how much it costs to take out a banner ad/and or ad spot. When your song is not playing, folks will be able to hear a snippet of it in the commercial ad you prepare, and they'll be able to see you while your ad is playing. Remember, it's the song that is in heavy rotation that plays in our heads when it isn't playing anywhere else. (Also, when you call in, ask what region of the country, or other countries, where the station is receiving lots of requests to hear your song played. )
Brother Kevin James was working in Terrestrial Radio for about 12 years before he got into internet radio. He believes that in spite of how rapidly technological advances are being made for our online music listening pleasure, there are still a few offline terrestrial radio strategies you should keep in mind regarding radio success. There really is no need to constantly switch up your selection of songs even though you have a wider pool to choose from. Listeners still like repetition.
Another tip Kevin offers artists, is to make sure they submit songs anywhere from 3-4.5 minutes in length. Anything longer than that, more than likely, just won't be added to rotation.
Below are two sound clips taken from my conversations with Delroy Souden and Andre Carter. (They were recorded separately.) Of course I extracted the most important portions of our conversations.
As I mentioned to you earlier, Delroy Souden is the founder of Ensound Radio, which is really 3 stations; to access Ensound Radio and My ESRN, please go to MYESRN Please give a listen to the tips he provides us with about how to be successful as an artist in internet radio. Also, for those of you are still AFRAID of Twitter, listen to the logic behind how it works for you and the station. (I am going to put up a Twitter Screencast in a few days to show you how to build up your followers, and make Twitter work for you.)
Interview w/Delroy Souden - Founder of Ensound Radio and The Ensound Awards Show by UGTKONation
Now I usually prep the interviewees before I start the interviews, but let me tell you, Mr. Andre Carter, of Synergy1Radiowinner of the Stellar Awards 2012 Internet Radio Station of Year category must have had an agenda when he called in. I barely got a word in edge wise, which is indeed rare, because I am known for talking over people. (Not good, but I've gotten better. I wonder when my daughter's change will come about. (Sigh)). When you listen to how the conversation goes, how he won the Stellar Award will start to add up. This man is a definite go getter. I wouldn't be surprised if he went around town with an Ipad, knocking on folks doors and navigated to the online voting spot for his station after he had them log in under their own names. But honestly, all joking aside, this man has a direction and plan for his station, as well as the artists. He too would like to see you wining at this game.
Andre Carter of SynergyRadio.com and Synergy Magazine by UGTKONation
Now look....I'll be honest with you. I don't know how you found your way over here, but if you found the information included here to be informative, be a Sweetie and click the JOIN button to the right of the screen. Also, if you don't have a whole lot of time to figure out what this Blog is all about, just take a moment and turn on the Video player under the JOIN Button and listen to me talk about what The Christian Artists' Promo Blog is all about. I'm sooooo out of here. Talk to you and see you soon. Subscribe to our YOUTUBE , Follow US on Twitter @UGTKONation , LIKE US on FACEBOOK and be my FRIEND ON FACEBOOK. I was about to say that's it, but I remembered, I have to ask you to G+1 us here to the right and below this blog, so we will be easier for people seeking the truth, to find.
Blesssings! Have an Awesome Thursday!
Arielle a.k.a. Determinator1