26 Apr 2013

Benny Maths does Record Store Day 2013

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For the past few months, I’ve been incredibly busy with the day job at Just Good Music PR. We teamed up with Itchy Pig Records to launch a remix competition with a twist for Record Store Day.

We wanted to give one lucky person out there the opportunity to have some music released on 12”. The competition is basically to remix Sir Vinyl Instinct’s ‘Fruit Fly’, an upcoming release on Itchy Pig Records that has already received the remix treatment from Saytek and Abe. The winner will have their remix added to both the vinyl and digital release. Two runners-up will have their remixes added to the digital release.

In the week building up to Record Store Day, we visited five different cities across the North: Liverpool; Manchester; Nottingham; Leeds and Sheffield. We left a load of CDs dotted around each city at key musical locations, such as Le Bateau in Liverpool, once home of seminal techno night Voodoo, and 86 Palatine Road in Manchester, the original home of Factory records. On the CD, you could find the stems for ‘Fruit Fly’. We then released a series of clues to direct people to the various locations, just like a treasure hunt. We also left even more of the CDs with the record shops in each city, which were given away on 20th April, Record Store Day.

If you missed out on any of that and are thinking, “Damn! I’d have well had a go,” then fear not. You can still take part by downloading the stems from the Itchy Pig website.

http://www.itchy-pig.com/2013/04/24/download-the-stems-for-our-remix-comp/

The entrants now have until 31st May to send us their remix by uploading it to the Itchy Pig Soundcloud page, handily found via this here link…

http://soundcloud.com/groups/itchy-pig-records-fruitfly-remix-competition/dropbox

The winners will be announced on Monday 3rd June, the vinyl will be released on Monday 1st July and the digital release will follow on Monday 22nd July.

Whilst a lot of hard work has gone into making this happen, it’s also been thoroughly enjoyable and there have been a few personal highlights along the way. First of all, there was the interview I did for Bido Lito, a magnificent music magazine, available for free on a monthly basis right across Liverpool. You can read that article on my last blog entry here…

http://www.justholditdown.co.uk/bido-lito-interview-benny-maths/

Myself and Sir Vinyl Instinct, the boss at Itchy Pig, went onto Billy Butler’s show on BBC Radio Merseyside to talk about the competition. Having grown up listening to Billy and Wally, and in particular the quiz they used to do, Hold Your Plums (if you’ve never heard of it just type that into You Tube and have a listen; still as funny now as I remember it being as a lad), this was something I really enjoyed, not least because I knew my Ma and Pa were listening, as you can through the following link…

https://soundcloud.com/justgoodmusicpr/just-good-music-bbc-mersyside

When I popped home for a quick brew afterwards, the first thing Ma Maths said was, “You don’t half say ‘Errr’ a lot.” I can’t really argue with that. It’s a habit when I’m thinking to fill the silence with an ‘Errrr’. Still, trust Ma Maths to ignore everything else in favour of offering her criticisms first!

The biggest piece of promotion I did for this was an interview on Janice Long’s BBC Radio 2 show. This was done over the phone in the early hours of Friday morning on 19th April. By this point we’d had a long and tiring week visiting all the cities and getting everything in place. As I was waiting for the call, scheduled for 12.15am, I was aware of how tired I was and worried about simply yawning my way through the interview. However, after the initial call from the producer, in which I was warned not to discuss any court cases or libel anyone (clearly my reputation from the old Sunday Sessions on salvagedigital.com preceded me), I was buzzing, all thoughts of tiredness drifting away in an instant. Janice was very easy to chat to and I got some lovely feedback afterwards, but you can make up your own mind by having a listen to it here…

https://soundcloud.com/justgoodmusicpr/just-good-music-bbc-2-janice

The benefit of having done all the graft in the months and weeks building up to Record Store Day meant that I could simply enjoy the day when it finally arrived. We had a Hold gig the night before in Liverpool, playing our monthly residency at Camp and Furnace, so I took a trip to Probe Records on the Saturday, treating myself to The Beta Band’s ‘Champion Versions’, the only one I didn’t have on vinyl out of those first three EPs, and the ‘Cotillion Soul 45s 1968 -1970’ boxset, a global release limited to 2500 crammed with some absolute gems. That night I was on salvagedigital.com and decided to play every tune from the boxset. It also got recorded, so we could share the love. If you’re into your soul music, or just need your mood lifting somewhat, then grab a listen here…

https://soundcloud.com/benny-maths/salvage-digital-record-store

With this year’s Record Store Day now done with, in the main, thoughts have already turned to next year’s, for which I have bigger and better plans. Not only will we be doing the competition again, but we have something very special lined-up for the day itself. But I’m getting ahead of myself now. That can all wait for another time.

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