Chryss Carr

Amrap Q+A with Chryss Carr, Publicist AUM PR and 2XX's Dylan Anderson

Amrap, 3rd February 2017
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Australian music airplay is one of the main reasons why 5 million people tune to community radio each week and our broadcasters passionately support australian artists.

Amrap builds a bridge between Australian artists and the airwaves by helping community radio to access and promote new Australian music on air and online. Community radio and the music industry's enthusiasm for Amrap has paid off, with Australian music airplay increasing by 7% since Amrap began to a new high of 39%. In 2015 alone, almost 100,000 music files were ordered for airplay by radio makers from Amrap’s Australian music distribution service – AirIt. Over 20,000 Australian artists were promoted through station websites and social media using Amrap Pages.

In this Q&A series we go behind these stats to find out how community radio program makers, musicians and the music industry use Amrap to make great radio, support artists and connect with listeners.

Chryss Carr has spent over 20 years in the music industry promoting local and international artists to Australian audiences.

Since 1999, her publicity agency AUM PR has worked on campaigns for Gurrumul's ARIA Award winning albums and promoted releases by Dan Sultan, East Journey, Briggs, Kutcha Edwards, Skipping Girl Vinegar, Radical Son , Tjintu Desert Band and many more.

Since 2009, AUM PR has regularly used Amrap's services to get music to community radio and grow artist's audiences. Why is community radio airplay important to AUM PR? Amrap

Community radio stations in Australia have a very diverse roster of programs so I never fail to find a good fit for any of our musicians. Community radio also allows for longer length songs and expanded editorial opportunities so you can really tell the full story to listeners.

How has airplay on community radio led to other opportunities for your artists?

Radical Son came out of nowhere and debuted at No. 1 on the Amrap chart, beating Dan Sultan that week. It made people sit up and listen and we used that ‘win’ in our ongoing spiel to media which in turn made them sit up and listen, seriously. More recently emerging Indigenous artist Alice Skye was heard on 3RRR by one of the St Kilda Festival programmers and got a slot on the bill. Magic!

How does Amrap’s AirIt make your life easier?

AirIt saves us stacks of time and ensures that a song is accessible to most community radio stations. We simply wouldn’t have the resources to individually service the hundreds of stations and programs out there! In fact, when we start work on a new artist, the first thing we do is load the song and write the copy for Amrap’s AirIt.

How do you use the details on a program's individual Amrap Page to learn about community radio?

We like to jump online and poke around individual Amrap Pages to find out what programs look and sound like. We then determine if a program could be a good fit to pitch one of our artists to for an interview, or at the very least send the program a direct download to the song using the AirIt link. In fact, sometimes we have a Friday arvo ritual - we pour a glass at wine o’clock and the person to find the most ‘out there’ program in the most ‘unknown’ region gets to come in half an hour later on Monday morning.

How does community radio airplay in different regions of Australia impact on AUM PR's campaigns?

If we see that one or more states or territories show a lot of orders for a particular artist on their AirIt report, we'll go and explore other opportunities. If we see a solid band of airplay and on-air support (interviews, in studio performances) we report that to artist management and/or the promoter so they can plan and strategise with those potential areas in mind. We always refer to the AirIt reports and Amrap Pages to find past supporters and evaluate them from a genre perspective too. So for instance, when we launched East Journey’s EP a while back we referenced our reports for Gurrumul, Dan Sultan, Blue King Brown and other Aboriginal or roots based artists on our past and present roster.

Dylan Anderson is the Program Coordinator for Sovereign, Australia's largest Indigenous program on general community radio.

Sovereign airs 3 mornings a week on 2xx in Canberra and brings listeners stories, issues and events effecting Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community. Each Tuesday Sovereign Sounds shines a light on Australia's Indigenous musicians by airing artist interviews, spinning new releases and inviting musicians into the studio to play live. Previous guests include Kutcha Edwards, Thelma Plum and Troy-Cassar Daley.

Why is Indigenous music such an important aspect of the program?

We only play music from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists. We believe that our culture brings unique stories and viewpoints through music. Sharing these stories with the wider community is an important way to educate and demonstrate the viewpoints they might not hear through protests or art.

How does playing Indigenous music help you to connect to Canberra's Indigenous community?

Everyone has a favourite Indigenous song. For example, the one granddad played in the car on the way to town. There are songs that bring people together. When listeners request these songs they are wanting to share their experiences through us. We pride ourselves in playing songs that people might not know about yet, from local artists to songs from desert. There is a lot more music out there than Yothu Yindi!

How does Amrap’s AirIt make it easier for you to put your program together?
Dylan 2XX

AirIt connects us to artists that we have never heard of. It’s great to find new Indigenous music on AirIt and plan a show with that in mind. AirIt's genre categories and search function makes finding the right music easy. For example, we can search for ACT bands to find new local music. AirIt track info is very detailed and makes us sound professional when we introduce the song or interview the artist. You use Amrap Pages to log your airplay lists.

How has it helped you to promote music to your listeners? 

Amrap Pages searches for artists Twitter handles and we can use those to let artists know we’re playing them. The artist replies or retweets and now we’re known to their followers! Tweeting what songs we are playing has brought in fans of the tracks to listen to our program. It's the same thing with music video results on Amrap Pages. We may not know that there is a video of a track, but Amrap Pages finds it for us. Or the next best thing. We also have our pages embedded with our Facebook page. We like keeping everything in one place and it’s easy for a listener to engage with all that we offer.

Find heaps of Indigenous Australian musicians for airplay at airit.org.au and check out Sovereign at 2xxfm.org.au

This article was first published in CBX Magazine in April 2016.

Australian musicians can track airplay and discover programs using Amrap Pages using Amrap’s Airplay Search here. Community radio program makers get your Amrap Page here.

Australian artists apply to add your music to Amrap’s Airt here. Community radio program makers and music coordinator get music for free here on Amrap’s AirIt.

 

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