Behind the Opportunity: Ghost Ramp Records

Ghost Ramp Records, who has released music from a diverse range of artists including Wavves, Best Coast, Weezer, and more, is scouting unsigned artists via an exclusive ReverbNation opportunity. We chatted with Patrick McDermott, co-founder of Ghost Ramp, to learn about what sets them apart from other indie labels, what they look for in artists, and more.

Ghost Ramp Records is the the brainchild of Wavves front man Nathan Williams and Patrick McDermott. How did you two meet and what inspired you to start a label together? How has it evolved since its inception?
Nathan and I met via mutual friends. Our friendship really stemmed from our mutual interest in video games (and possibly getting relatively drunk while playing them). But seriously – I think when you meet a fellow gamer as an adult it’s something that does really build a bond. It’s collaborative and just really snowballs in terms of other nerdy hobbies and interests.

Ghost Ramp releases music across several genres. What are some factors you look for when recruiting new artists?
We aren’t calculated with trying to check boxes with genres or really worried about confusing people with lots of genres. I think the modern listener has a diverse palette as ever. People listen to everything just like we do. We truly just put out what we like.

Why do you think its important for a record label to release video game OSTs? Is the release process different from ‘regular’ music releases?
I don’t think it’s necessarily important for other labels to worry about video game OSTs (please leave them to us :)) haha but yes I just really believe some of the best electronic music is coming out of video game scores. I’ve always been super drawn to OST music and I believe it’s time to close the gap between the traditional music world and the video game world which is often considered niche (but in fact has arguably a larger listener base).

KevinBehind the Opportunity: Ghost Ramp Records
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Artist You Should Know: Dead Leaf Echo

Get to know Brooklyn’s music/art collective, Dead Leaf Echo! We chatted with the group to get the deets on their new cassette, I WILL Do Anything Tour, influences, and more.

Hey Dead Leaf Echo, introduce yourselves.
We are LG: Guitar,Vocals Ana B.: Guitar, Vocals Kevin K: Drum Steve S: Bass

You recently premiered “sparks.fly.from.a.kiss” on IMPOSE who called it, “Badass, sensual, and intense, this track is something we intend to play at our next big party.” What’s the story behind the track?
That’s a last minute B-side that was added to the tape. It was created in the studio with a drum machine and one guitar. The lead off track “I will do (anything)” (premiered on Brooklyn Vegan) was recorded at Mexican Summer’s studio Gary’s Electrical with Jorge Elbrecht (Ariel Pink, Violens) we tracked it there almost 2 years ago! It’s nice to finally release something after such a long time.

What’s the concept behind split cassette with Did You Die?
We played this wild techno party in Vancouver with them before the van broke down in British Columbia. It was ultimately the last show of our west coast tour last year. We knew there was something special there and they had suggested we do something collectively together. We have these 2 tracks that aren’t going to be on our new album so it worked out perfectly for this tape release. Plus we’ve never released any music on that format so that’s cool.

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On The Radar: Gina Cutillo

October marks our 10 year anniversary as a company, and what better way to commemorate the last decade than interviewing our very first artist! Pop songstress Gina Cutillo has been with ReverbNation since day one, and we caught up with her to get the inside scoop on her new single “Keep On” that just debuted at #34 on Billboard Top 40 Mainstream chart, her successful sync placements, how she’s dominated as an indie artist, and more.

Hi Gina, thanks for chatting with us! You just released “Keep On,” an impassioned dance track that is already climbing the charts. It’s #1 Indie Record on New Music Weekly’s Top 40 Chart, #15 on New Music Weekly Top 40 Chart, #53 on MediaBase Top 40 Activator Chart and more (so impressive!). Why do you think this song is getting so much love from radio? Is it better than others or has the fact that you have collaborated with big names influence the radio programmer’s willingness to spin the record?
That’s a really great question and the love just keeps on coming as “Keep On” debuted last week on Billboard Top 40 mainstream chart at #34. I feel like I’m living a dream and I suppose I am..you know the one I have been having since I’m 5 yrs old. I think the track is definitely something special, I also believe my resume makes it easier but as they say hard work and timing is key. I had been working hard, networking, performing and being very active on my socials building an online fan base so people were sharing my songs and talking about what I was doing. A radio promoter was sent my ReverbNation page (Thank you Reverb!) He fell in love with my song “Fly (Feel Love Tonight)”. After many conversations and a couple of months we decided to work together. He asked me what else I had (he knew I was in the studio recording the new album) so I sent “Keep On” and that was that! He said “Fly” will be a big hit for you no doubt but this one is a big hit as well as a perfect introduction to who you are as an overall artist. Nothing is a guarantee and radio is hard to break especially for an Indie but I really believed in what I was doing and felt deep down inside there was something really special here.  

KevinOn The Radar: Gina Cutillo
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Artist You Should Know: Beca

Dance-pop diva Beca just released “Future Foreigner,” the magical first taste of her forthcoming EP ‘Precious Gold.’ We caught up with Beca to learn about her musical background, collaborative recording process, recent sync placement, and more.

Hi Beca! Thanks for being part of our series! How are you doing today?
Hi there! Thanks for having me. I’m great and about to rehearse with my dancers for a show. We’ll be getting everyone dancing and having a good time!

We read that you graduated from The Juilliard School. What was your experience like there?
It was pretty incredible. The program and teachers really challenged me and pushed me to my musical edge, while inspiring me to explore different genres and try different sonic spheres. My goal was to gain as big a sound palette as possible. That was my main focus there. Not to mention the students could easily sight read nearly all of my scores.

At what age did you know music was your path?  
I wanted to do music for as long as I can remember. Around age 5, I picked up songs on the piano at friends’ houses then my parents got me a piano and signed me up for lessons. I was always singing, dancing, playing, and getting my sister and friends to harmonize with me. I also liked to pretend I was the snow queen in the wintertime, just to throw that in.

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Artist You Should Know: Future Thieves

With a haunting new single that just premiered on Team Coco, a live album due out in January, and a slew of shows coming up, Nashville-based rock band Future Thieves belong on your radar. We chatted with the guys to get the 411 on what it was like to record their live album at Blue Rock Studio, their evolution as a band, and more.

Hi Future Thieves! Before we get into it, can you introduce yourselves?
Well first we have Elliot Collett from Eastern Kentucky on guitar and lead vocals, Austin McCool on guitar and Nick Goss on bass, both from Southern Indiana, and Gianni Gibson from Los Angeles on drums.

Congrats on premiering “Ghosts” on Team Coco (Conan O’Brian)! What’s the story behind the track?
Thank you! What a thrill to be on his website, we’ve always loved Conan. The track came from a riff Austin had on guitar and it evolved into a poppy, groovy song. The lyrics mention a bit about some darker subjects, such as the “early ghosts” bit. But overall we wanted a clean, well put together song that floats around for the most part and punches in the chorus.

KevinArtist You Should Know: Future Thieves
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Behind the Opportunity: Open for The Cool Kids at The Art Institute of Chicago’s After Dark Event

We’re so excited to share that we’re working with the Evening Associates of the Art Institute of Chicago to find one artist to open for the influential hip-hop duo The Cool Kids at their exclusive After Dark event live at the Art Institute of Chicago. We chatted with Jeremy Rothschild, Chairman of the Evening Associates Board of Directors at the Art Institute of Chicago, to learn about the successful After Dark series, how it’s become a platform for emerging artists, and more.

Hey Jeremy thanks for chatting with us! Introduce yourself and tell us what you do for the Art Institute of Chicago.
Jeremy Rothschild: Chairman of the Evening Associates Board of Directors at the Art Institute of Chicago

What is After Dark, what does it offer for audiences of the Art Institute of Chicago?
After Dark is an event series hosted by the Evening Associates Board of directors that highlights art exhibitions at the Art Institute of Chicago while featuring musical acts, cocktails, interactive theatrical performances, and occasionally art making activities all focused on engaging Chicago’s young professional audience.

The Evening Associates Board is a diverse group of young art-inspired professionals, innovators, and philanthropists committed to engaging Chicago’s under-40 community with the Art Institute of Chicago, driving Evening Associates membership, and promoting an understanding and appreciation of the arts. They were named the 2015 Associate Board of the Year by Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of Chicago (YNPN Chicago).

KevinBehind the Opportunity: Open for The Cool Kids at The Art Institute of Chicago’s After Dark Event
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Artist You Should Know: Owen Bones

Chicago-based producer Owen Bones recently premiered his latest single “Mach One” on Pigeons and Planes who described it as one of his finest displays of production. Read on to get the lowdown on the collaborative process behind “Mach One,” his upcoming debut album Dive Club, Spotify experience, and more.

Hey Owen Bones, thanks for be part of our series. Can you tell us a little about Owen Bones and is that your real name?
Thanks for inviting me! My real name is Owen *Jones* (clever, I know). Owen Bones is a bit like my alter ego. He does things I might not.

Pigeons and Planes just premiered “Mach One” the lead single off your debut album Dive Club and described it as one of your finest displays of production. Tell us about the track.
The beat was made earlier in the year in one sitting, and I knew right away that it had some special qualities. A close friend of mine was sitting in while I made it, and we imagined it might sound a bit like the inside of a spacecraft during intergalactic travel…the theme stuck, and the name was saved. When picking beats for the full project, I had been listening to a lot of Tunji, and I thought his voice fit. Same with Aaron – he was actually the first person to hear the beat.

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Artist You Should Know: Del Caesar

We caught up with Brooklyn trio Del Caesar to get the lowdown on their new single “Like They Always Say,” upcoming EP, 60’s garage/psych rock sound, and more.

Hey guys! Introduce yourselves – who are the forces behind Del Caesar?
We’re three dudes living around Brooklyn that love old school garage rock and the new psychedelia stuff coming out.  I’m [Aaron Lloyd Barr] on vocals/guitar, the rock solid Eric Arikian is on bass, and the animal Ben Reynolds is on drums.  

Describe your sound in ten words or less.
Del Shannon covering Ty Segall’s song “Caesar”

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