Indie Band Guru wanted to introduce you to another hard-working band that has their shit together and seems just about ready to take off.  We recently had the chance to speak with NY/NJ alternative rock band The Nico Blues about promoting themselves, gaining a fanbase, and their take on the independent music scene today.

The Nico Blues - Blame the Boredom, Blame the Basements

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[audio:|titles=06 The Gents and The Jesus Freaks]

Here are their words that they wanted to share with the Indie band Guru readers:

-Basically, The Nico Blues strategy right now is to play as many shows as we can and sell our CD’s for $5 each at shows to get it in the hands of as many people as we can.  However, unlike most bands we have our music up on our website for free download.  As a relatively unknown indie band, this is the best way to gain fans.  Get your music on their IPods and computers.  The music can also be streamed so the only people downloading it are people that geniunely dig the music.  Sometimes we’ll play two shows in a day.  One time this summer the band played in Philly on Friday night, Queens Saturday afternoon, and Baltimore Saturday night.  The reasoning for this is that for the most part we’re not playing any amazing places.  Aside from shows in NYC and North Jersey, we’re usually playing dive bars or relatively dilapidated places.  However, the more shows a band plays, the greater the chance of some of those shows being good.  The truth is that we’ve played some amazing shows for crazy kids in dive bars, while in other dive bars we’ve played for practically no one besides the sound guy.  Actually, the first song on our album “Three’s A Crowd” is about playing your heart out no matter how few people are there to see you.  Any band that wasn’t born in to having some sort of connection in the music industry can certainly relate.

Bands also need to utilize social networks like Facebook and Twitter.  We’ve actually gained a lot of fans from both and its a perfect way to stay in touch and relate to your fanbase.  Showing that you care about them as much as they care about you will only benefit the band.  Also, emailing music blogs and hoping that the people behind the blog like the music is a great way to get exposure.  A lot won’t answer, some will say it’s not their thing, but, if you’re good, there will be some blogs that will promote the band.  Music blogs have a HUGE impact on up-and-coming artists and 9 out of 10 times, they’re the ones who know about a great band first.

Finally and perhaps most important, up-and-coming bands need to be nice to everyone they meet, for the most part.  You can’t be a primadonna jerkoff and expect people to like you.  If you’re nice to people and other bands, then they’ll ask you to be a part of their shows.  It really goes a long way in booking yourself.  Punk rock is freedom and you don’t have to play “punk rock” to share in its ideals.  However, all DIY indie bands need to share in its idealism.  In my humble opinion, anyone looking to start a band should read the book “Our Band Could Be Your Life” by Michael Azerrad.  He’s a great writer and it is one of the most inspiring books I’ve ever read.  Not to mention, every band mentioned in that book is amazing.

-The Nico Blues are an alternative rock band from New York/New Jersey. The band has just released their debut album on their own Tiny Giant Records imprint titled “Blame the Boredom, Blame the Basements”. This album was recorded, produced, and mixed by the band in their home studio. The Nico Blues are influenced by rock, folk, and punk bands from the 1950’s to 2010. All of their music can be downloaded free at their website

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