Something Stinks Around Here…

In an unusual flash of inspiration, I decided to login to my band’s myspace page this morning. While wading through the typical friend requests and e-mails that were sent to us two months prior, I stumbled upon this little gem in my inbox from user: ourmusicexperience (who is neither friend or acquaintance).

The ELVi,

We found you on the web by searching for “Chicago Bands” on Google, clicking through 1000s of artist lists, and finally concatenating your name with in hopes of finding you on MySpace. We could have found you with two clicks on, but that is not the main reason we are sending you this message today.

The main reason is that we received a TOUR:SMART PLUS TICKET ($175 VALUE!!!) from Martin Atkins to GIVE AWAY.

[Editor’s Note: It rambled on for a bit, further discussing this Tour:Smart Plus Seminar and how awesome it’s going to be, but I won’t bore you with the details. Next comes my favorite part…]

1. Create your listener account
2. Create your musicians account (for Artists, Bands, and DJs)
3. Send an email with your musicians account URL. Subject: Tour:Smart Plus Competition
4. Get Votes on your musicians account from friends, family, and fans. We even have customized mini flyers on your promotions page that you can print, cut, and hand out to fans at your next show.
5. Who ever has the most votes by March 28, 2010 @ 5:00 pm EST wins. If there is a tie, we will draw a random winner from the tied accounts. Video will be posted on the home page.

For more information about the competition check out


Best Regards,

I’m not going to bother going into the logistics of who in their right mind is desperately trying to win a free ticket for a “two day immersion seminar in everything you need to know to become the rebel artistic entrepreneur you want to be.

What I would like to take issue with however, is yet another random company trying to solicit me and my band like a bunch of starving telemarketers. They found me by searching “Chicago Bands” in Google? Then they clicked through 1000s of artist lists, only to find us? Uh-huh… sure. I guess that’s what they make the interns do after they finish scrubbing the bathrooms and pealing potatoes.

Even if I WAS interested in what this company had to offer, I’m immediately suspicious and put off by their approach.

This “competition” is something we’ve probably all seen a million times before. If you haven’t learned by now, 99% of “whoever gets the most votes” competitions are a complete waste of time. First and foremost, you’re basically asking your family, friends and fans to show their support on something that’s not only frivolous, but also probably requires them to create an account and thus be inundated with an endless supply of junk mail from a company they could care less about.

Trust me… it’s a much better idea to call in favors when you have an important gig and really need people’s support.

Secondly, by creating an account yourself, you’ve opened the floodgates for every “get-famous-industry-enhancing-business-development-tool” that RMusicX and their affiliates have to offer. Despite the crumbling music industry, there’s still plenty of money to be made off starry-eyed kids with dreams of being famous rock stars.

Truth be told, I have no knowledge or insider information about RMusicX or their business practices. For all I know, they could be offering some great service(s) that would help you and your band to get out of the basement and into the public eye. But if you ask me… something about them stinks (including that 5 – 11% they charge for any goods you manage to sell through their site).

Above all else, I urge you to think rationally and logically before signing up for every “WE HEARD YOUR BAND AND WANT TO HELP YOU!” that comes across your inbox.


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2 Responses to “Something Stinks Around Here…”

  1. Katie Crain says:

    Hey Justin,

    My name is Katie Crain. I work with Martin Atkins at Tour:Smart and we are hosting the Tour:Smart PLUS seminar you blogged about.

    First of all, thanks for commenting the contest RMusicX ran. We like those guys and they are working hard to help bands. We allow all our partners to run contests as they see fit through their own sites. I know that Jason spent a lot of time researching bands and genuinely wants to help.

    Many of our other partners, Threadless, JBTV, Chrip, ran contests through their social media networks and chose a winner at random.

    Send me an email if you’re interested in the seminar. I’m sorry to hear your interaction with RMusicX left a less than desirable taste in your mouth. I’d like to make it up to you by offering you a comp pass to the seminar so you can make your own judgement about what we have going on at Tour:Smart HQ. I seems like Tour:Smart and The School of Hard Rocks share a common philosophy.

  2. Justin says:

    Hi Katie,
    Thanks for the offer. Unfortunately I will be unable to take you up on it, as I have other commitments this weekend.

    I completely understand allowing your partners free reign to run their contests, I just feel it’s my duty to inform people of situations that potentially appear greater than they truly are.

    Our seminar (and quite possibly yours as well) intends to offer advice to young people about the potential pratfalls and problems with the “business” of music. It’s largely based on things we have seen and experienced over the last 15 years, and hopefully will help teach musicians to use critical thinking and common sense before jumping head first anytime someone comes knocking.

    Best of luck with your seminar.

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