Kevin Murray completed a BA (Hons) in Commercial Modern Music – Songwriting at BIMM Dublin in 2017. Since then, he’s decided to make a move from performance to the fast-paced world of PR, with the inception of his own business venture, ‘Vamp & Fade’. We caught up with the graduate to hear all about how the company could help numerous local artists reach new audiences.
Hi Kevin, what made you want to start Vamp & Fade?
When I graduated, I was very lucky and got a job with PR company Good Seed here in Dublin. We do anything from one month to full year campaigns. When I started to work I had a lot of musician friends ask me about what we offered, but our plans didn’t suit a lot of them as they were either not ready or didn’t have the funds. It seemed to me there was no option for bands who just want to get their music out to the industry without the long expensive campaigns. It’s either DIY or pay quite a large sum for a campaign with a PR company.
There is nothing like Vamp and Fade around at the minute. PR companies do campaigns that can easily get very expensive and there are even some companies popping up with platforms trying to make servicing your music-to-industry simpler. But the ones I have encountered are clumsy, hard to use and still very expensive. I wanted something for the unsigned band or artist that was easy, affordable, transparent and professional.
Where would you like to see the business in 5 years time?
I would love for the business to have grown to an established name within the Irish scene. It’s important that Vamp and Fade is a reliable source of good music, or the bloggers and DJ’s will stop opening our mail. To do that we need to work with great bands and artists and I’m lucky that with the students coming from places like BIMM there is no shortage of amazing talent in Ireland at the minute.
What are your main pieces of advice for any band/artist looking to start a successful PR campaign?
If you are going with a DIY campaign, first, do your research. Look at other bands similar to you. Look at their Facebook, etc and see what stations have played them, what blogs have covered them and if they’ve done any live sessions. A lot of bands and artists don’t actually know the media scene very well which is fine but if you’re doing a DIY campaign prepare to put in the hours to research who to contact. Once you’ve done that, get a snappy and concise press release with all the necessary links to make you and your music easily accessible.
And where/how do you think most artists tend to go wrong?
It may seem obvious but I think a lot of artists include too much in their first email. No one is going to read a full-page bio and press quotes, and if something large like that appears in a blogger/producer’s inbox, it could put them off listening. The trick is to be informative and concise and have the relative info easily accessible if the reader wants to delve deeper. Make it a short paragraph on who you are and who you sound like, with links to music – Then a google drive or Dropbox folder with full bio, mp3’s, press photo etc.
What was the most valuable lesson you took from your course?
To make use of your time around so many talented people. After leaving BIMM and being involved in the live scene, you quickly realise how influential BIMM is and how many graduates, lecturers and even current students are involved in the industry.
To see what sort of affordable PR services are being made available by Kevin at Vamp & Fade, check out the official website.