If you are an artist/ label/ PR company and would like to get your music blogged on Monkeyboxing, or if you are interested in advertising or sponsoring the site, please get in touch via the following email:
Please bear in mind that the ONLY music the monkey will consider is FUNK, SOUL, HIP-HOP, REGGAE (inc. ska, rocksteady and dancehall) and PARTY BREAKBEATS – along with associated mash-ups and cheeky versions.
Please also bear in mind that the monkey receives a lot of submissions. This means it is not possible to feature every submission and it isn’t even possible to reply to every submission. To help you submit music successfully, please read the guide below.
There used to be an excellent guide to submitting music to any music blog on the hilarious but now defunct loudat.com. So good was it, in fact, that some PR companies used it. Sadly, a depressing number of submissions (including an alarming number by so-called professional PR companies) still ignore some obvious basics that basically all boil down to common sense and knowing your audiences. The audience for your music submission is music bloggers; the ultimate audience for the music in the submission is punters who like music and (hopefully) read music blogs. While both audiences require some music worth listening to, music bloggers require a little more:
1. Only submit to a blog that covers your genre Unsurprisingly, different bloggers cover different genres. The monkey only considers funk, soul, hip-hop, reggae and party breaks. If your music isn’t this, it will almost certainly go straight in the trash. Repeat offenders tend to get marked as spam.
2. Make the genre of any music submission clear by the end of your first paragraph, preferably by the end of your first sentence and, ideally, in the message subject line. Most people manage to put the name of the artist and the track in the email title. Lovely. But if you don’t also make the genre of your submission obvious early on, it means a blogger needs to look for it and they aren’t going to do that because music bloggers are super busy fielding a multitude of submissions. What they are going to do is put your submission in the trash and mark repeat offenders as spam for wasting their time. Ideally, your message subject header should use a formula something like this:
SUBMISSION – [Artist name] – [release title and format] – [genre]
3. Even if a blogger is interested in posting about a submission, they still need you to provide a number of things in your submission that are easy to find amid all the PR guff:
i. Some info about the release ideally including an obvious active streaming link – ideally very early on. If you’ve submitted your music to an appropriate blog, bloggers want to listen it. They can usually tell in about twenty seconds whether or not they’re going to post about it from listening to it and all the PR guff in the world is unlikely to change that.
ii. Some info about the artist i.e. a brief bio. This is another no-brainer right?
iii. A release date (even if it’s only ballpark). You’d be surprised how many times this is missed out. If the submission is a free download then make that clear and provide suitable embeds or links that are activated to allow free downloads.
iv. Something to embed in a post. Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Hearthis or Youtube embeds are perfect. Again – you’d be surprised how often people making submissions expect bloggers to write about something they haven’t heard. Even if a music blogger were to write such a post, you can imagine how a punter who arrives to find there’s nothing to listen to or watch might feel mugged-off. If you can’t, then you’re probably one of the PR companies who ignores these basic rules. Punters don’t like being mugged-off and bloggers don’t like assisting in mugging-off punters because it loses them readers. As a result an embed-free submission is unlikely to get posted – unless it is very special news indeed. If no embed is available, do the decent thing and communicate when it will be available and make sure you follow-up with embed info. when it is available
v. A ‘don’t post before…’ date. Some people favour sending PR out a long time before release, some a short time before and some even send it after a release. It can become a nightmare to stay on top of what to post and when to post it. Plus, bloggers like a tidy inbox to stay on top of things. If you favour sending out your PR a long time before a release that’s great – it gives bloggers a good long time to properly get their heads round a release – at least if you’ve sent audio/ video links. If you don’t want ‘buzz’ too early then give a ‘don’t post before…’ date. Once again, since this is important, you might want to put this near the top of your submission.
vi. Provide a dj-quality free download for the blogger (i.e. at least 320kbps mp3) and if it’s a vinyl release, perhaps a copy of the vinyl. If you’re expecting a busy blogger to write about the music in your submission then it’s helpful if they can access that music when offline. In any case, bloggers spend time writing about the music you send so that it reaches a wide audience, effectively providing extra PR for no monetary recompense, so it’s just a nice thing to do. Furthermore, many music bloggers, including the monkey, actually DJ professionally or semi-professionally. Providing them with a copy of your music that they can play out is more free advertising and a no-brainer.
4.Got a submission coming out on a simultaneous international release date but thinking of submitting to your country’s blogs first and the rest of the world later? Don’t. No blogger wants sloppy seconds on old information. There’s this thing called the internet. Stuff is available internationally as soon as it’s posted. There’s no incentive for a busy blogger to waste their time blogging about something that’s going to net them no visitors because everyone already knows about it. Unless you bribe them with audio and vinyl of course – see point 3, bullet vi. above. The only acceptable exception to this is if you have staggered international release dates.
The more of the above steps you cover, the more successful you are likely to be. Good luck.
Big love to all those who already know the drill – you know who you are.
Big-ups to Jack ‘Loudat’ who wrote it first and much more amusingly.