Ray Budworth lives, eats and sleeps music. Everything in his life can be related to a melody and all he wants to do is make his mark on the local music scene. Unsure of how to be heard, he’d try telling his friends about his newest recording. He didn’t want to seem desperate and post fliers, but he wanted to get the word out.
A friend told him about a social networking website devoted to musicians: ReverbNation. This new site revolutionized his world and millions of others.
Launched in 2006, ReverbNation has been changing with the times and leading the way for social media sites focused toward the use of musicians.
Another local musician and student at Pierce College Puyallup, Andrew Crook performs as a solo musician and said he frequently gets contacted for show opportunities through ReverbNation’s helpful show finding program.
ReverbNation allows booking agents, venues and promoters to seek and find local acts that would best fit each of their specific shows. They can do this by entering information like where their venue is and what genre they’re looking for.
On the flip side, musicians are able to seek out and apply to play at shows through ReverbNation. Some applications for bigger shows may have an entry fee, but those shows are typically for larger bands that have the budget and experience to enter.
“Any method of getting my name out there is good and ReverbNation is where a lot of venues look for live acts,” Crook said.
Yet another Pierce College Puyallup student, bassist and back up vocalist for The Ongoing, Andrew Slack also finds ReverbNation to be an essential tool for any up-and-coming musician today. Slack said that his band is a testimony to how effective ReverbNation is and The Ongoing has even found shows through the musical networking site.
A few alternatives to ReverbNation are BandCamp and RootMusic. Both competitors are notable, but they lack certain key components of ReverbNation. BandCamp and RootMusic are designed to share a band’s music and sell it for them, but ReverbNation does all of that in addition to finding the band shows to play.
Not much would change if ReverbNation ceased to exist, but many musicians like Crook would have to work much harder to find shows.
ReverbNation also is building ties between local musicians. Many musicians use ReverbNation to market their music, but many musicians also personally use and discover other musical acts through this site.
Having found similar bands through sites like ReverbNation, Matthew Zazula of Citizen’s Arrest is an example of how helpful the site is.
“One time we found a show in Seattle with a band on tour from Italy. That was a great experience because they were really close in genre and we were able to tell that we would work well together because of ReverbNation’s music playing capability,” Zazula said.
When marketing their bands through ReverbNation, musicians agree it’s in their best interest to use the networking site frequently.
“Seven times a week, once each day,” Crook said.
“I’ll probably check the site two or three times a day to see if we got any show opportunities and to check how many plays our songs have,” said Budworth.
On the listener end of the music, everyday student at Pierce College Puyallup Huxley Cross said, “I probably listen to music through ReverbNation once or twice a week when I’m checking out local bands. It’s really user friendly and tons of bands have them.”
Bigger acts such as local band Navigator are continuously selling their merchandise through ReverbNation. Anything from shirts to sweat-stained guitars can be sold to help the musicians profit.
“We appreciate the tools provided and the convenience of connecting all of our social media in one location,” Slack said.
ReverbNation is free to use and it makes for great publicity. With over 2,000 plays on four songs The Ongoing has been taking advantage of the free advertising. Some popular capabilities of the networking site are exploring the community’s music scene and publicity for the band’s upcoming shows and music releases.
“Money is tight, and promotion is expensive. It’s a good outlet,” Crook said.
The Ongoing’s ReverbNation account is linked directly to their Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts so that their plays and promotional material are all conveniently linked together.
“ReverbNation provides tools that are beneficial, especially the EPKs [Electronic Press Kit] distribution and merchandising tools,” Slack said.
By utilizing the technology of a digital generation, ReverbNation is trying to be the next best thing for both bands and audio consumers alike.
The Puyallup Post is the award-winning student news of Pierce College Puyallup in Puyallup, Washington. Copyright The Puyallup Post 2017. Twitter/Instagram @puyalluppost