1. avatar fastfude
    There I said it. :D

    In the many years of maintaining band profiles on Fastfude, as well as reading them on Myspace et al, it has been a rare thing to find a band able to string together 100 words about itself that are clear, simple, informative and engaging.

    Why is this?

    Why do so many insist on copying and pasting so many corny superlatives, incorrectly applied metaphors and downright appalling clichéd phrases from the hacks of the 90s music press?

    Let me straighten it out a bit: no-one believes, or is impressed by, that shite. It makes you look bad. Like you couldn't be arsed to spend time on it, don't have anything substantial to say anyway and you'll probably split up after your second rehearsal. That kind of bad.

    Let's fix that.

    I want to read your biog to get a sense of your MUSIC first and foremost. If you then have a few words left over for subtle, clever style then great, but get the message across first.

    [i:4beef80e8e]Write LESS not more, and refine the shit out of it over and over.[/i:4beef80e8e]

    Stick down all the important points you want to convey about your music in a list of short sentences, then chop and whittle it back as far as possible, cutting out any words and phrases that do not contain 'the message'. Be brutal and honest here, it'll do you good!

    Then tweak, polish and massage those few bits until they fit together like a jigsaw and convey to a new reader as clearly as possible what your music is and why they might want to take an interest.

    Even just saying you're "A Stoner Rock band from Augher with influences X, Y, and Z" is a start. A little dull granted - a bit of selective wordsmithery would add some colour and character to the facts - but it communicates the info and I know what to expect from you.

    There are countless journalists and writers and readers and critics out there to get opinions from - ask a few to proof and critique what you write, especially ones who don't know your music. An external opinion like that can really help with how you present and describe yourself to the infinite strangers of the general public.

    Sorry, btw, if this come across a bit harsh, but it seems like such an own goal and could really, really be done much, much better to the direct benefit of your band!
  2. avatar Desus
    How about all the bands stop sending press packs too. The amount of paper wasted is ridiculous. I can get everything I need to know about a band through the internet.
  3. avatar Crackity_jones
    Excellent post, Roger.

    Less is more, indeed, and for god's sake make sure your bio is proofed for spelling, grammar and punctuation. Nothing says 'unprofessional wasters' like a bio which looks like it has been written by that dolphin bombers wanker.

    This applies to PR people as well, by the way - as a music journo the amount of overwritten and/or incoherent nonsense you read is downright depressing.
  4. avatar leeroy77
    I just posted up a load of other peoples reviews on myspace. I have press release stuff, written by someone good at english and grammar, because its hard writing shit about yourself.....without sounding like your lying or boring.....
  5. avatar thesacredhearts
    Band X meeting Band Y in a bar brawl with Band Z.


    Its a pretty unlikely event that they are going to meet all in the same bar and then be really uncivil and have a fight. i just dont think its plausible.
  6. avatar rentaghost
    Also - details of your childhood are unnecessary. I don't need to know youve been playing piano/guitar and writing songs since you were 6.
    Its best to avoid the overly whimsical as well.

    What I need is a hint of the kind of music you play, and any recent achievements/releases/reviews.
  7. avatar JTM
    [quote:e92eebdb08="thesacredhearts"]Band X meeting Band Y in a bar brawl with Band Z.


    Its a pretty unlikely event that they are going to meet all in the same bar and then be really uncivil and have a fight. i just dont think its plausible.[/quote:e92eebdb08]

    I enjoy coming up with new scenarios for band influences X Y and Z to combine under. It's a blunt tool to get your sound across, but done concisely I think it can work. What do you guys think?

    Also I agree - minimal and to the point is best.
  8. avatar Recycled Alien
    [quote:5fbd9305d4="JTM"]I enjoy coming up with new scenarios for band influences X Y and Z to combine under. [/quote:5fbd9305d4]Was this you?
    [quote:5fbd9305d4]"Uber Glitterati bring a genuine retro flair to start the night - If the Cocteau Twins ran into a taxi carrying Neil Tennant, Annie Lennox and Vince Clarke on the way back from the roller disco, then you'd ignore this terrible metaphor and get the hint that this is a complete dream of a band, not to be missed. "[/quote:5fbd9305d4] Made me smile at the time, but maybe not so good for the band to put on their bio.

    Or is it? I don't know.
  9. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:51cc99e9f7="Crackity_jones"]
    as a music journo the amount of overwritten and/or incoherent nonsense you read is downright depressing.[/quote:51cc99e9f7]

    And that's just in Jonser's areticles!

    As Roger said, there's plenty of people out there who can help, and I am indeed, one of them.

    Advice is frequently given out for free, you know...
  10. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:2b09a9a508="Steven Dedalus"]

    And that's just in Jonser's areticles!

    [/quote:2b09a9a508]

    Shit...I spelt "article" wrong...


    [img:2b09a9a508]http://www.cultofmac.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/DoubleFacePalm.jpg[/img:2b09a9a508]
  11. avatar Sir Bob Gelding
    I once had the misfortune to come across a press release about a certain band that contained one page of relevant material, then a further three pages (one for each member of the band) of bio and 'fun facts'. I don't care if the bassist's favourite food is Spag Bol. And I don't think anyone else does. Save the culinary issues for the rider.
  12. avatar thebatgranny
    And don't, [i:e8b7bdb539]just don't[/i:e8b7bdb539], tell me how your music is going to make me feel. You don't know me, you don't know where I come from musically, and you don't know for definate if your latest dirge is going to make want to jump for joy and shake my thang or stick pins in my eyes and jump out the window.
  13. avatar Strong Reaction
    Personally, I'd never read a bio..
  14. avatar Chi-Lite
    Haha, we had a class one there that said we were like "beautifully interpreted retro deposits that are never stale, but work always modern. How would you like to squeeze into tight trousers, a black-white-checkered dress shirt and driving a duck pond on his head on a Vespa through the night?"

    That has to go on the bio like, doesn't it?
  15. avatar SweetDickWilly
    Ok some fair points made by folk above, here's my band's [url=www.myspace.com/deliriumtremensrock ]Myspace[/url] with a revised Biog-Blog. Anybody care to have a wee glance and give some feedback please?

    Spank you very much

    Peter
  16. avatar Crackity_jones
    [quote:d736bbc030="Steven Dedalus"][quote:d736bbc030="Steven Dedalus"]

    And that's just in Jonser's areticles!

    [/quote:d736bbc030]

    Shit...I spelt "article" wrong...[/quote:d736bbc030]

    And 'Joneser'! :lol:
  17. avatar Nietzsche's Last Days
    It's all shite though isn't it, be it refined or non.

    It's just about what goes in the ears really.

    And genres are all shite as well.
  18. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:7de156abaf="Crackity_jones"]
    And 'Joneser'! :lol:[/quote:7de156abaf]

    Flip sake...

    To be fair, it's been a long week....
  19. avatar Jamesy Yakuza
    I really fear for what will happen when band a meets band b on drug c...that's going to be messy!
  20. avatar jenniemcc
    One of my biggest 'facepalm' moments was writing that a band "never fail to disappoint" in a press release.

    My advice - PROOF READ PROOF READ PROOF READ PROOF READ.......
  21. avatar my-angel-rocks
    [quote:c532dfff8b="Desus"]How about all the bands stop sending press packs too.[/quote:c532dfff8b]

    Really? All the other information I've seen says "Don't forget your press pack". Or do you just mean stop sending press packs to promoters, rather than stop using them altogether?
  22. avatar thecomeons_2
    i think it means not to bother with a press pack if it's poop
  23. avatar Woogster
    You're often much better if you just have a label on the CD case/sleeve with your less-than-100-word bio + contact details on it, particularly if sending to radio and/or DJs.
  24. avatar JTM
    [quote:a4fba0a3d9="Recycled Alien"][quote:a4fba0a3d9="JTM"]I enjoy coming up with new scenarios for band influences X Y and Z to combine under. [/quote:a4fba0a3d9]Was this you?
    [quote:a4fba0a3d9]"Uber Glitterati bring a genuine retro flair to start the night - If the Cocteau Twins ran into a taxi carrying Neil Tennant, Annie Lennox and Vince Clarke on the way back from the roller disco, then you'd ignore this terrible metaphor and get the hint that this is a complete dream of a band, not to be missed. "[/quote:a4fba0a3d9] Made me smile at the time, but maybe not so good for the band to put on their bio.

    Or is it? I don't know.[/quote:a4fba0a3d9]

    Yes that was me. I enjoy being a little bit different when hyping a gig to get an instant feel across (and a laugh) to the reader. But it's a fine line between creativily advertising your band/brand, and just plain bonkers.

    I'd certainly tone it down if a band wanted me to write a proper bio or provide them with a solid quote to use.
  25. avatar fastfude
    It's worth bearing in mind that a bio written to win over a fan may not be the same bio you want prospective promoters or industry types to read.

    They have to read hundreds of these things and such gimmicks stop being funny and quirky after the second or third one they've read. By the four hundredth, they may just shred your biog on sight, then burn the strips, then stamp on the ashes while shrieking like a wild animal. You probably won't get that particular gig.
  26. avatar thecunnyfunt
    yeah well your search feature sucks!
  27. avatar NaomiS
    some great advice... I always find it werid writing a bio for myself, I always go with less is more...
  28. avatar SweetDickWilly
    Thanks very much to Karen, Chris and Roger for all your feedback and suggestions. Our PR is the best it's ever been, you're wee stars! :-)
  29. avatar Desus
    [quote:b6c7cc8bf0="my-angel-rocks"][quote:b6c7cc8bf0="Desus"]How about all the bands stop sending press packs too.[/quote:b6c7cc8bf0]

    Really? All the other information I've seen says "Don't forget your press pack". Or do you just mean stop sending press packs to promoters, rather than stop using them altogether?[/quote:b6c7cc8bf0]

    Yeah sorry I should have said stop sending press packs to promoters. We're not the press after all.

    But even in this day and age anything that goes in a press pack can be put onto a MySpace page?
  30. avatar Desus
    I don't think Deci will mind me posting this but this is well written and informative. Although granted its probably a little out of date.

    [i:fbd4fad8fb]
    The Jane Bradfords are a four piece. Sometimes they can be as large as a seven piece. Sometimes its just one guy in a studio cursing at old keyboards that used to work perfectly well.

    The Jane Bradfords are difficult to pigeonhole into a genre; on the surface they’re Indie, but elements of Pop, Electro and even post punk are all in the mix. There’s the nonchalant swagger of The National, the driving, tight Peter Hook style bass and at times the euphoric hosannas of Arcade Fire, but they have a defiantly unique sound.

    The list of bands that they have supported reads like a who’s who of niche indie and includes The National, Maximo Park, LCD Soundsystem, CSS, Cold War Kids, and Peter Bjorn and John among others, emphasizing their unique cross-genre appeal.

    They have received critical acclaim from the media, including being crowned ‘God of the Pod’ in Huw Stephens best of unsigned 2006 on Radio 1 and recording a subsequent session in the famed Maida Vale studios. Radio 1’s ‘introducing’ subsequently awarded the band with ‘album of the week’ for their 2008 self-titled debut LP. During that time the Jane Bradfords had a minor success in a small country in the middle east; but that’s a different story… [/i:fbd4fad8fb]



    Its got everything you need. First paragraph is a very concise background. Then a paragraph hinting at what they sound like, and then major achievements.
  31. avatar JTM
    That's an excellent biog.
  32. avatar Bileofwood
    I've just updated the page for "The Hubris" and I am quite confident that it shall henceforth be the bio by which all subsequent bios will be judged.
  33. avatar fastfude
    Perhaps in a "don't do it like this" way, yes ;)

    You could replace the lot with "[i:1770636d45]The Hubris are a 4-piece alternative punk band, drawing comparisons to Green Day, The Jam and The Clash and have been performing live shows in Belfast since mid-2009.[/i:1770636d45]" without losing any meaningful content!
  34. avatar my-angel-rocks
    Yeah, well your $wgLogo still sucks.
  35. avatar fastfude
    I was thinking of getting it tattooed.
  36. avatar Bileofwood
    [quote:756e83f807="fastfude"]Perhaps in a "don't do it like this" way, yes ;)

    You could replace the lot with "[i:756e83f807]The Hubris are a 4-piece alternative punk band, drawing comparisons to Green Day, The Jam and The Clash and have been performing live shows in Belfast since mid-2009.[/i:756e83f807]" without losing any meaningful content![/quote:756e83f807]

    Bollocks! I'd lose half the bio!

    Who said content had to be meaningful?!?
  37. avatar my-angel-rocks
    [quote:deaead6ae6="Bileofwood"][quote:deaead6ae6="fastfude"]Perhaps in a "don't do it like this" way, yes ;)

    You could replace the lot with "[i:deaead6ae6]The Hubris are a 4-piece alternative punk band, drawing comparisons to Green Day, The Jam and The Clash and have been performing live shows in Belfast since mid-2009.[/i:deaead6ae6]" without losing any meaningful content![/quote:deaead6ae6]

    Bollocks! I'd lose half the bio!

    Who said content had to be meaningful?!?[/quote:deaead6ae6]

    It is helpful though. I read your bio and got to the 3rd line and thought "fuck it, can't be arsed reading all that shite", and then I read Roger's summary and it was much more helpful.
  38. avatar Bileofwood
    Oh, fair enough.

    I was going for the whole "more words equal more important band" approach. Maybe I should rethink.
  39. avatar The Ronster
    Right, I haven't really altered ours except to remove some out of date info.

    [url=http://fastfude.org/wiki/Black_Bear_Saloon]Check it out.[/url] Does it make the grade?
  40. avatar fastfude
    I'd put 'musical style' and 'touring' above the 'history' section, as they're more immediately useful bits of info, while history is kinda secondary further reading, but otherwise have a badge.
  41. avatar tinpot anto
    [quote:311f9278ed]So, I mean, if look at the state of some of this shite; the way stuff is, and the way it could be if there wasn't wankers wrecking the world - and you just think to yourself "In the name of F*ck!", then you want the Tin Pot Operation. You do, like. [/quote:311f9278ed]

    I am soooo reluctant to ever change this. :)
  42. avatar The Ronster
    Done and done.

    While we're at it - Anto O' Kane and Anto O'Kane in the Artists Category need to be merged.

    With an arc-welder, preferably.
  43. avatar salfhal
    Howcome few of the people who promote their practice space on here actually have made a wiki page for it?

    Surely it'd be in their interests to have their details on there.
    [i:7252fcf246]
    And don't call me Shirley.[/i:7252fcf246]
  44. avatar my-angel-rocks
    [quote:b45bf0f7a4="The Ronster"]While we're at it - Anto O' Kane and Anto O'Kane in the Artists Category need to be merged.[/quote:b45bf0f7a4]

    And it needs to be case insensitive too: compare and contrast

    http://fastfude.org/wiki/Black_Bear_Saloon
    http://fastfude.org/wiki/Black_bear_saloon

    Cos while its nice having the gig listings autolink to the wiki pages, people don't seem to care (or know in some cases) for proper capitalisation so a lot of the time the links are to nothing.

    (Not picking on you or BBS, Ron, just it was an example that I already had the page open for)
  45. avatar fastfude
    I suspect Mediawiki is hard-wired for case-sensitivity in page titles though (Except, oddly, for the first letter which isn't). I could probably rejig the gig listings to better match up with that though.
  46. avatar fastfude
    [quote:1bf0468efe="salfhal"]Surely it'd be in their interests to have their details on there[/quote:1bf0468efe]
    Horse, water, etc.
  47. avatar Steven Dedalus
    [quote:d428dce39c="my-angel-rocks"]

    (Not picking on you or BBS, Ron, just it was an example that I already had the page open for)[/quote:d428dce39c]

    Give 'em HELL!
  48. avatar my-angel-rocks
    [quote:4c02d989f4="fastfude"]I suspect Mediawiki is hard-wired for case-sensitivity in page titles though (Except, oddly, for the first letter which isn't).[/quote:4c02d989f4]

    Yeah, thats what I suspected.
    The first letter thing isn't case sensitive because MediaWiki says all articles must start with a capital letter: even typing http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ipod redirects you to Ipod, which then says "iPod (redirected from Ipod)." The correct address is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPod
  49. avatar InnerCitiesClaud
    I've just updated our Wikifudia.

    [url=http://fastfude.org/wiki/Inner_Cities]Let me know what you think[/url]
  50. avatar Stevie Mac
    I'm always at a loss when it comes to the whole PR thing, dancing about architecture etc.
    Someone else make me sound great on paper, I'll just keep writing tunes.
  51. avatar my-angel-rocks
    [quote:6915bc6ae2="InnerCitiesClaud"]I've just updated our Wikifudia.

    [url=http://fastfude.org/wiki/Inner_Cities]Let me know what you think[/url][/quote:6915bc6ae2]

    It would read better in 3rd person.
  52. avatar Crackity_jones
    [quote:19002cf970="my-angel-rocks"][quote:19002cf970="InnerCitiesClaud"]I've just updated our Wikifudia.

    [url=http://fastfude.org/wiki/Inner_Cities]Let me know what you think[/url][/quote:19002cf970]

    It would read better in 3rd person.[/quote:19002cf970]

    That's true. Also, there's no need to capitalise non-proper nouns like the names of music genres and instruments. I've never understood why people feel the need to do that.

    Other than that, it reads fine - short and to the point. If you get any quotes in the music press, be sure to add and attribute them.