Archive for June, 2007

Canadian singer/songwriter shares music

Brad Sucks Ottawa independent music

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The success of Ottawa-based singer/songwriter Brad Turcotte is probably the best argument against the paranoia over file sharing displayed by large record labels in recent years.  On his website,

Turcott explains:

In 2001, I started using the Internet (blogs, MP3s, P2P) to spread my music and not worrying so much about copyright violation.

He adds that he:


…figured that spreading my music should be the number one goal and so far it’s worked out pretty well.

Despite giving my music away for free online, my songs have been licensed for television, played on commercial and campus radio, and I made enough money from licensing and sales to do a real pressing of my first CD.

Check out a couple of Brad’s songs or download the whole album here free, and for more on Brad and his one man band (he writes, records and performs everything himself) read this entry from


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The living room sessions

guitar living room music session independent

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Until recently, the best place to hear live original music might have been at a local open mic at a café or other commercial venue.


But musicians at such events still had no easy way of sharing their music with a larger audience.


With the advent of mp3 files and now YouTube all that may soon change and a social change to match the new technological possibilities seems in order.


Imagine, for example, the emergence of living room sessions with original music beamed right out of people’s homes via audio or video onto the Net.


Imagine hosting an open mic party at your house instead of a Super Bowl Party packed with friends and invited musicians.


Podcasters could even be invited to capture the event live and disseminate it to the Web, so there’d be no reason to even worry about providing your own gear. Just the space.


Sites like could even be used to gather the right mix of folks and musicians though, of course, great care would need to be exercised to overcome the inherent danger of such an endeavor.


Those interested, for example, might gather first in a public place to check everyone out and make sure there are no causes for concern.


For those who think this sounds strange remember that early blues singers and hip hop DJ’s played rent and house parties before larger venues were ever open to them.


And for a better understanding of how the underground club scene in New York City got started out of a guy’s oversized apartment read about David Mancuso and The Loft here and in “Last Night A DJ Saved My Life: The History of the Disc Jocky” by Bill Brewster and Frank Broughton.


If you decide to host a living room open mic, we’d like to know about it.


Drop me an e-mail and some audio or video files if available so I can share them with the network. N10ah will also be working toward having some of its own similar sessions in the future.


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The Peopleized interview

Halil Peopleized Shawn Hessinger interview

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A few months ago, I was interviewed by a guy named Halil from Stuttgart, Germany whose new site Peopleized offers members the opportunity to create conversations with friends, associates or perfect strangers.


The result will give regular readers of this blog a little behind the scenes info on me and some of my other projects in case you’re interested though it is more about the blog.


You can join and do your own interviews on-line. I’m hoping to use the site myself to do some musician interviews in the near future. Enjoy.

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Vote for your favs

vote independent music contest

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After another depressing election season (May here in PA), it’s nice to find something that’s really worth supporting with all your heart and soul.


No, I’m not talking about do-nothing political candidates. I’m talking about great independent music!


SongFight! offers a weekly roster of artists performing songs written around a common theme or phrase selected by the site’s creators. Visitors do the rest via the voting section.


Here are some examples of recent entries and a sample of a recent ballot.


At least there may finally be some democracy in the music world even if there isn’t much anywhere else.


Make your voice heard!


Photo credit: Dawn M. Turner, Morguefile

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Blast from the past

Big Daddy Blue blues music

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Here it is as promised. More info on my two cassette releases, Big Daddy Blue “His First Recording” from 1993 and Big Daddy Blue “King of the Northeastern Blues” from 1994.

The title of the second may sound a bit hyped to some, but, more than a boast, it was intended as a play on the titles of other traditional blues performers who often attached some similar grandiose description to their names—King of the Delta Blues, King of the Texas Blues, King of the 12-String Guitar, etc.



I was living in the Poconos in northeastern Pennsylvania at the time, so I figured “King of the Northeastern Blues”


Anyway, I had a small psychotically dedicated following, did two live radio spots one for WVIA in Pittston and another for a defunct station that no longer exists, and had the tapes for sale in Tie-Dye Dave’s Hippie Gift Shop (now Dave’s Unique Gifts and Novelties) and a few other regional outlets. 


In fact, I think ol’ Dave may still have some of those tapes or may have sold them in the interim since I admit I was not much good at regularly servicing my retail accounts. Wasn’t much of a business man in those days, just a dumb kid barely out of college.


So that’s the story. Questions are welcome, and I still have a closet full of inventory since I ordered much more than I needed. There was another recording too by the “Buck Hill Ramblers” a traditional country, cowboy and bluegrass duo of which I was one half. Again, a small dedicated following and some gigs.


Once I can figure out how to get some of this stuff on line I most likely will. Perhaps as part of an on-line independent record store, a companion to this site, that I’ve been kicking around. More on that later…


Suggestions for that venture and what you’d like to see? E-mail me!

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