I get a lot of emails from bands wanting me to listen to their music. Too many, in fact. Some of them clearly know and love our artists, some of them are idiots. Completely unsuitable musically, clueless and delusional, they have this primitive idea that signing to a label means that they can kick back and say "hey mum, we've made it" whilst someone else puts in all the hard work and the bank balance ticks up as if by magic. However, my very least favourite emails are the ones full of lies...
"Thanks for coming to see us the other night in (insert bizarre town name a hundred miles from home), glad you enjoyed it, we're getting in touch as requested." Fine, if true, but I wasn't at that gig. Don't lie, you're not going to fool me into believing I saw and enjoyed your set.
"Dear sir/madam. I really appreciate your roster." Really? So you 'really appreciate' all of the hundreds of labels rosters you've shamelessly cc'd in on this one email? Don't lie, you're not going to flatter me into signing you, especially when you refer to me as "sir/madam"
"I've tried everything I could to contact you about our demo." Emailing me every week via Myspace, my least favourite form of online correspondance, is not 'everything'. It takes roughly 5 seconds to quickly Google the label name and find my email address, Facebook details, Twitter account and more. Don't lie, Myspace isn't the only way to contact someone and certainly isn't the best way to be noticed.
"Hi, my name's (insert very odd name) and I'm the manager of (insert terrible band name)" "Mate, you're not gonna believe this coincidence! I just checked out the bands website and the guitarist has exactly the same name as you! What are the chances of that?!" Don't lie, giving yourself a title of manager is neither big nor clever, and certainly doesn't make you look any more professional, especially when rumbled.
And then there was today's lie. It began with a friendly enough email until I reached the 3rd paragraph: "I spoke on the phone to a colleague at your company and he suggested we send an email to this address." How intriguing, I was under the impression that BSM was a one-man company with no other employees, and I certainly don't remember taking this call. Out of curiosity I asked for a name of the person they spoke to on the phone. "No name was actualy given. it was a very quick call." A very quick call indeed as having responded once more, this time asking for the number they called, I was told: "To be honest no number was given out, it's just an email, to try get the band heard." Now that sounds more like it. The phantom phonecall has been exposed. Email deleted, music never listened to.