Discussion Forums

Bands Breaking Out Of Ireland
Last Post 23 Feb 2005 03:48 PM by Norman Schwarzkopf. 36 Replies.
Printer Friendly
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Sort:
PrevPrev NextNext
You are not authorized to post a reply.
Page 1 of 212 > >>
Author Messages
Norman SchwarzkopfUser is Offline
Basic Member
Basic Member
Send Private Message
Posts:427
Norman Schwarzkopf

--
23 Feb 2005 03:48 PM
    A very broad topic I know, but Im interested in different opinions on why so few Irish bands manage to get anywhere outside this country. My fairly ill-informed guess is that a) there's next to no media outlet (TV & radio) b) a lack of drive in many cases where bands & artists seem content to be local celebrities c) no Irish equivalent of NME hyping new bands, for better or worse. I'm pondering a project and I need opinions. Cheeerz
    GarUser is Offline
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:1676
    Gar

    --
    23 Feb 2005 04:08 PM
    The media attention toward underground/unsigned acts in Ireland is very limited. Hotpress would be the biggest music magazine in this country and they usually only devote two pages to upcoming acts thus not really providing them with alot of coverage, especially since those pages are at the back of the magazine. The Ticket and Day & Night only really cover the bands when they do something big or get signed up. Gigsmart has long championed the unsigned process. And even here on Cluas, there has been alot of reviews and interviews with unsigned acts (some of which crop up every year in the end of year polls). Other newer magazines like Connected, Mongrel, Event Guide and Totally Dublin touch on the scene slightly. Basically there is a lack on concentration on the scene. It could be argued that there are not enough good bands out there for the mainstream to bother with the underground scene. Then again, it could be argued that there is. All a matter of preference and experience. Experience in the sense of people who actually know what type of bands are out there, what venues host these acts and if they offer anything different. I don't think Ireland needs an NME but a bit more coverage of unsigned acts would be a welcome feature in the mainstream media. Alison Curtis, Jenny Huston, John Walshe and Dave Hegarty all play unsigned bands on their radio shows so not much wrong there. Although I think the radio shows stay within a barrier of indie/rock aimed at a teenage audience. Donal Dineen and Rattlebag are usually on at times when alot of people can't tune in, but they are also good. A music talk show would be a good idea if it was handled well and incorporated various genres. Slowly but surely, there are more bands breaking out of Ireland. This is down to ambition, their talent and the fact that they are getting more professional. Alot of the bands who are launching themselves in the UK etc now have PR companies handling their affairs. This can be a bit of a pain, as some of them aren't very welcoming to freelance journalists and smaller publications (of course they will tell you differently). But the future does look bright for some acts: Republic Of Loose got some media attention in the UK last year, Jove, Hal, Wallmark, Mainline and La Rocca are all about to launch themselves beyond the Emerald Isle. So hopefully international media will pick up on them and realise that there are some really good bands in Ireland. Sorry for the rambling...hope it slightly answers your question
    dope fiendUser is Offline
    New Member
    New Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:78
    dope fiend

    --
    23 Feb 2005 04:22 PM
    lots of bands seem to get close. then get stuck in a rut or something and end up playing the tbmc as returning heros. when in fact they have done f**k all. Why did damian Rice make it? I think the album had a good original sound ie diffrent type of song structures and chords that gave it a sound. it was obvious that this was not just another c**t with a guitar. Even though he has milked it till the blood has run and deserves hate for this.
    bonzoUser is Offline
    Basic Member
    Basic Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:364
    bonzo

    --
    23 Feb 2005 04:51 PM
    quote:
    Originally posted by Norman Schwarzkopf
    A very broad topic I know, but Im interested in different opinions on why so few Irish bands manage to get anywhere outside this country. My fairly ill-informed guess is that a) there's next to no media outlet (TV & radio) b) a lack of drive in many cases where bands & artists seem content to be local celebrities c) no Irish equivalent of NME hyping new bands, for better or worse. I'm pondering a project and I need opinions. Cheeerz
    (d) they are simply not good enough.
    GarUser is Offline
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:1676
    Gar

    --
    23 Feb 2005 04:56 PM
    I'd disagree Bonzo. Many good bands out there.
    UnicronUser is Offline
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:1696
    Ian Wright

    --
    23 Feb 2005 05:24 PM
    quote:
    Originally posted by dope fiend
    Why did damian Rice make it?
    Luck, in a number of areas: - Meeting Lisa Hannigan - His album falling into the right hands, he's got David Gray's management behind him, and most importantly that guy who hosts Morning Becomes Eclectic on KCRW in California started playing him, he nominated O for the shortlist award, which he subsequently won, which he ... it all just snowballed for him.
    strollerUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:576
    stroller

    --
    23 Feb 2005 06:14 PM
    One reason is that they don't spend long enough touring outside of Ireland. If you want to break America you're going to have to spend at least six months of the year touring and promoting yourself. That's how U2 did it back in the day. It's hard work been successful. Franz Ferdinand sold over three millions albums last year, the majority of which were outside of their home country but look at how many gigs, festivals, award shows, interviews, radio sessions and TV appearances they did. I can't think of any Irish band that works that hard. And why would you want to work that hard abroad when things are so cushy back home. It's awful hard on the old ego to go from being one of the biggest acts in your own country to being complete unknowns elsewhere. I'm sure Glen Hansard doesn’t get hassled for autographs when he's walking through the streets of NY but back here he can fill Morley Park. But then what's the point of touring abroad if you're pedalling inferior produce? Unfortunately there simply aren't enough decent bands in the country. Considering the population of our Island we should be producing a lot more quality acts then we currently are. Greater Manchester has a population of less then 2.5 million and in the last 25 years they've managed to come forward with The Smiths/Morrissey, The Stone Roses, The Buzzcocks, Joy Division/New Order, Doves, The Chemical Brothers, The Fall, The Charlatans, The Happy Mondays and Oasis. What have we produced? Mundy? He'd struggle to be successful as a busker in any other country. That's the problem with this country; we constantly drop our standards when we're dealing with our own. Have you ever seen the Frames get a better review than 3 stars in any magazine outside of Ireland? The reason that these bands are getting ignored elsewhere is because other countries aren't making allowances for them. The people who are writing for Mojo/Q/Uncut/NME/Word etc aren't afraid to give the likes of Paddy Casey an honest (i.e. bad) review because they're not afraid of bumping into him in Whelan’s the next night and having to explain themselves. Our standards are just too low. If you're an Irish teenager growing up listening to Tom Dunne and reading Hot Press the given belief is that if you make music as good as the Frames, Bell X1, David Kitt, Paddy Casey, Mundy, Gemma Hayes etc then you're up there with the best of them. You're not. You're languishing in the lower divisions of the world music scene. The media in this country should spend less time pushing mediocre domestic artists and more time pushing outstanding international ones. Then maybe our current batch of musicians would aim there sights (and there standards) a little higher and strive to make quality music that's good enough to succeed abroad.
    GarUser is Offline
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:1676
    Gar

    --
    23 Feb 2005 06:22 PM
    Good points made Stroller. But there are some really good bands out there like the Redneck Manifesto who could make an impact internationally if their songs were maybe a little more radio friendly or their record company pushed touring, press etc in foreign lands.
    EoinUser is Offline
    Basic Member
    Basic Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:174
    Eoin

    --
    23 Feb 2005 08:06 PM
    I think we could in fact do with a paper/magazine on simuilar lines as the NME. ie. without the tabloid element and all the other bulls**t. I don't believe myself that it could be sucessful as a weekly venture, there really just isnt that big a sceane here and therefore not enough interest. But every two weeks like hotpress would be good. Like you say Gar, those 2 lousey pages towards the back of hotpress is just scandalous in my opinion.
    GarUser is Offline
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:1676
    Gar

    --
    23 Feb 2005 08:27 PM
    Well as I said Gigsmart have done alot for unsigned bands in this country for a long time now. And they are expanding now into Loudmouth Magazine which should be out next month. So anyone who has a slight interest in Irish acts should maybe buy a copy of this magazine, if it is laid out well with interesting features in it.
    dope fiendUser is Offline
    New Member
    New Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:78
    dope fiend

    --
    23 Feb 2005 08:53 PM
    not many bands seem to have the balls to be really different or to go against the grain, which is how bands make it I think. Franz ferdinand wanted to make rock music you could dance to without digital help(no remixers,loops etc) and look were that got them. The rednecks and a few others stick thier necks out and get noticed. You dont have to be epic to make it.
    GarUser is Offline
    Veteran Member
    Veteran Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:1676
    Gar

    --
    23 Feb 2005 08:59 PM
    No you don't have to be epic to make it but there are alot of bands who do things differently e.g. Republic Of Loose, Redneck Manifesto, Sack, The Chalets. Maybe we expect too much from these bands or not enough, maybe we (as a concious music alert people) expect bands to be fairly average - this might stem from the lack of great Irish bands recently or from the Irish attitude of never expecting too much success or praise. Think I'm rambling again so I'll just stop. Anyway, for a couple of decent acts on tomorrow night. Check out: Mighty Stef in Sugar Club Wallmark in Whelan's
    bonzoUser is Offline
    Basic Member
    Basic Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:364
    bonzo

    --
    24 Feb 2005 07:14 AM
    quote:
    Originally posted by Gar
    I'd disagree Bonzo. Many good bands out there.
    There are but not good enough to make it outside of Ireland.
    MullyUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:849
    Mully

    --
    24 Feb 2005 07:22 AM
    quote:
    Originally posted by Gar
    Alison Curtis, Jenny Huston, John Walshe and Dave Hegarty all play unsigned bands on their radio shows so not much wrong there.
    Yes, There is. Its at 2o'c in the morning ! There is a good right up on the state of 2FM in the ticket last week http://www.ireland.com/theticket/articles/2005/0218/3543895871TKDISCONEW_A_A.html Basically saying how the just move the chairs around in the sitting room every so often (chairs being Ryan, Callaghan & Gogan ~ all old men, who with the exception of Big Larry, dont know exactly have their finger on the pulse of music) instead of trying something new. If the head of 2fm had so much faith in the new djs that get the night shift, why doesnt he give them an audience. The lack of Phantom has been a death knell for a lot of bands over the last few yrs, so fingers crossed that not too much changes when it kicks off in July.
    PilchardUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:699
    Pilchard

    --
    24 Feb 2005 07:26 AM
    quote:
    Originally posted by Norman Schwarzkopf
    A very broad topic I know, but Im interested in different opinions on why so few Irish bands manage to get anywhere outside this country. My fairly ill-informed guess is that a) there's next to no media outlet (TV & radio) b) a lack of drive in many cases where bands & artists seem content to be local celebrities c) no Irish equivalent of NME hyping new bands, for better or worse. I'm pondering a project and I need opinions. Cheeerz
    A fantastic topic and again explains why i like spending quality posting time at cluas! Well, first lets disregard (a) and (c) - these are domestic issues which have no bearing whatsoever on what happens abroad. the irish music media has always been highly complacent and always (almost without exception) praise our own without ever pointing out their faults, filling nohoper bands heads with notions of grandeur. HP is the worst for this with their awful Demo Dips and industry features. a few journalists do call it like they see it but theyre always criticised for this - see anytime jim carroll in the irish times makes a point that no-one else is making about irish rock. we always like to praise our own so when one of our own says things we dont like to hear or read abour them, we turn on them, its the work ethic which does for irish rock every time. The irish bands who have made a decent impact (and I will define "impact" in this instance as having daytime radio play in foreign lands, having their videos played on TV and touring to crowds of 1000+ each night, which rules out the indie mob) have worked very very hard. We may not like them but Irish music abroad means The Corrs, The Cranberries, U2, Sinead O'Connor, Van Morrison and, most recently, Damien Rice. the likes of THe Thrills have not made as much of an impact abroad as their press here would lead u to believe - for all their high-profile tour supports and the like, they're not selling thousands of records or filling venues in europe and the US on their own. All of the irish acts who are having an impact abroad have one thing in common - they work very hard. its not really about the music, people, i'm afraid, it's about the work ethic. This work ethic means getting off your arse and touring touring touring touring touring touring touring until u are blue in the face. Ash spent 18 months touring the US between "free all angels" and the last album and theyre gone back for more. The Frames will spend 2005 touring abroad. The rest? They scuttle back home at the first sight of a bad review or an empty venue. Mundy, as someone else said, is a bad busker but he's also a lazy f**k who is happy to sit on his 15k sales in ireland and not go any further. paddy casey will also come back home again with his tail between his legs after trying the UK and US. i know he's not irish but i would say that Josh Ritter will do very well in 2005/06 with his new release and of the new irish mob, declan o'rourke (whose music I detest) seems to have the potential to put in the hours abroad. similarly, if i bet on bands rather than greyhounds, i'd put a few euros on La Rocca who have signed a new deal with an interesting US record company Dangerbird headed by Air/Beck producer Tony Hoffer and who worked like dogs in 2004 touring to get there. Work, it's a four letter word to so many bands but it has to be done. Read any of the U2 biographies about their tours of the US in the early 1980s and see what they had to do. You have to go out there and tour like a motherf**ker. Play every gig. Shake every hand. Smile every day. Do the press. Dont complain. Dont whinge about missing your boyfriend/gilrfriend. Do not pine for a late pint at Whelans. Its why Irish bands down thru the years have failed so miserably abroad. just because a band call fill the TBMC with ex-girlfriends and drinking buddies doesnt mean they'll do well abroad. they have to go out there and work their fat asses off. in 2005, few bands can be really bothered to do that when they can sell 5-10k records at home and tour endlessly here on the back of that.
    Vent My SpleenUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:500
    Vent My Spleen

    --
    24 Feb 2005 07:42 AM
    I think we also need to realise that in terms of buzz and hype about a band, Dublin/Ireland is a backwater. Think about the buzz there was about Rep of Loose going back a year. If they were based in an English city, they would have had a great deal of media attention. Right now, if you were serious about being successful in a band, I'd head for Glasgow or some other Dublin sized city over the pond. Going to England to tour is just not the way forward. The best was is to go there and 'own' a city. Also, whilst Pilchard is correct about hard work, many a good band has failed to generate interest outside of Ireland through the management having no clue about how to tour, promote and make ends meet outside of Ireland.
    PilchardUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:699
    Pilchard

    --
    24 Feb 2005 07:48 AM
    quote:
    Originally posted by Vent My Spleen
    Also, whilst Pilchard is correct about hard work, many a good band has failed to generate interest outside of Ireland through the management having no clue about how to tour, promote and make ends meet outside of Ireland.
    yeah, good point but it also points to a band's failing - remember the band EMPLOY the manager and not the other way around. if your manager is clueless (and u will quickly find that out) show him or her the door. if u are a band with potential, u will have good international managers queueing up to work with u. the vast majority of irish managers are great at doing the things needed here - getting RMG to distribute your record, booking shows in Cork and Waterford etc, getting plays from Alison Curtis/Jenny Huston/John Creedon, getting reviews in HP - but are useless clueless brickies when they get on a plane or boat to leave the country. there are a handful of great irish managers - Paul McGuinness @ Principle and Ben Barrett (Damien Rice) come quickly to mind - but, like with everything, we're a small country and we only can produce a limited amount of any resource.
    strollerUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:576
    stroller

    --
    24 Feb 2005 09:52 AM
    quote:
    Originally posted by Vent My Spleen
    Think about the buzz there was about Rep of Loose going back a year. If they were based in an English city, they would have had a great deal of media attention.
    No they wouldn't. In any major English city the media are spoilt for choice when they choose which band they've going to lavish attention on. Why would they choose a bunch of 3rd rate FLC knock offs?
    Vent My SpleenUser is Offline
    Advanced Member
    Advanced Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:500
    Vent My Spleen

    --
    24 Feb 2005 10:07 AM
    quote:
    No they wouldn't. In any major English city the media are spoilt for choice when they choose which band they've going to lavish attention on. Why would they choose a bunch of 3rd rate FLC knock offs?
    Maybe ROL was a bad example. The point was that if a band were to get a lot of attention in an English city, they would be on the radar of the music press whereas the same attention here counts for squat in the context of breaking out of Ireland. For example, if Snow Patrol were based in Dublin, I suspect they wouldn't be having the success they are now. (Bands mentioned are purely incidental)
    mutchUser is Offline
    Basic Member
    Basic Member
    Send Private Message
    Posts:392
    mutch

    --
    24 Feb 2005 10:09 AM
    I think music quality is little to do with sucess, at least I hope not or otherwise Aslan are fantastic and better than, say, My Bloody Valentine!
    You are not authorized to post a reply.
    Page 1 of 212 > >>


    Active Forums 4.3