Andrea Young was born to work in music; it runs in your blood. After graduating college with a degree in music and psychology, she began work at MCA – a distributor who then handled Tom Petty, Chaka Khan and more. But like most of our Fluence curators she didn’t stop there, over time Andrea co-owned a chain of record stores, co-founded a company that computerized the music business (hello SoundScan) and eventually made her way to radio. We got a few minutes to catch up with Andrea and here’s what she had to say:.
Tell us about your present day career. What do you do? And what does it entail?
It’s always been about the music for me, whether as a hobby or a profession. I currently run my record label and produce my radio shows, so I am doing what I have always wanted to do! I spend my time listening to music to find tunes to play over the airwaves and share [digitally]. What that entails takes many forms, from coaching artists through Fluence and other online review sites to promoting individual artists I believe in through my record label, Aspenbeat. And from playing tunes on my weekly eclectic public radio show on Aspen Public Radio (“Aspenbeat”) or my jazz radio show (“Jazz From Aspen”), to creating playlists on Spotify for my private clients, or sharing in my newsletter and blogs and playlist sites to my listeners and fans – in other words, I share them anywhere and everywhere I can.
Is Fluence helping make your role a little easier? How?
Definitely. I think Fluence is part of the future of music promotion and distribution. The good and the bad news is that the field of getting attention for your music has opened up to anyone and everyone with a tune and some persistence. But how do you spend your resources wisely, what makes the most sense? That type of strategy is what I love to do and Fluence brings artists to me to do that in both a shorthand version (online review) and then in more focused ways as I work with some of the artists who have come to me through the site. Fluence matches up curators and creators in an affordable and viable way unlike anything that’s come before it. In the past you’d have to struggle to find an industry expert to listen to your music – now with a little bit of research and work you can reach curators like myself and gain some traction for your music. I’m always listening for something that resonates with me and therefore my audience. Fluence helps bring those tunes to me.
On the other side, I get too many submissions to listen to every day: Fluence helps moderate that process for me, bringing in artists who might be a bit more serious (i.e. willing to pay an industry expert for a listen and feedback). I’ve got an ear for hits and what makes a great tune. I’m building my label and always looking for artists to work with. While I’ve been in the music business a long time, I’m working through the transition happening in the industry right now just like everyone else. It’s a new paradigm and a new road for me and everyone. Fluence helps with that too. I’m a big fan.
Have you made any epic discoveries while using Fluence?
On the music side, I have discovered artists, that I love, that I have played repeatedly on my radio shows and that have become part of my ‘Aspenbeat Top 300’, ‘Aspenbeat Top Songs of 2014”, and ‘Aspenbeat Constant Repeats’ playlists, including CMBSTN, Birds Over Arkansas, Ted Pearce, David Rosen and memoryfield (now on the Aspenbeat label).
Fan girl moment, what artists can you not get enough of right now?
I tend to play certain songs over and over again when I find something that catches my ear. Usually just one song off an album, it’s rare for me to find two or three that I really love. You can find my Constant Repeat playlist on Spotify, SoundCloud, Youtube and my website. I tend toward pop and singer-songwriter with some good high energy rock and roll thrown in.
Right now my list includes songs from Dr. John (‘Sometimes I Feel Like A Motherless Child’), Sam Smith (‘Money On My Mind’), The New Basement Tapes (‘When I Get My Hands On You’), Stevie Nicks (‘Lady’), Willie Nelson (‘The Wall’) and Kids On Bridges (‘When The Needle Drops’). On the Aspenbeat label there’s memoryfield (with their cover of David Bowie’s ‘Space Oddity’), Natasha Marin (yes Cheech’s wife and a prolific classical pianist, try her ‘Chopin Collection’), MYA Project (electronic pop with ‘Believe Me’) and The Rifters (Americana with ‘One Hundred Miles’) just to start.
Oh! I just saw Billy Joel at Madison Square Garden and that reignited an incessant playing of Billy Joel music on my playlists, he’s one of the most prolific entertainers of all time, I consider him our world’s Beethoven or Mozart. I’m also a huge fan of what I call ‘big pop’ from the top of the charts, the Taylor Swifts and One Directions of the world, I love their complex production and energy.
Sweet! Thanks for your time, Andrea.
Want to send your music to Andrea Young? Visit her Fluence profile here.