Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Unearth Rocks!

Over the last few years I've done street teaming for a bunch of different bands that I've liked, mostly through Streetwise. I've done it for three main reasons. The first reason is that I like to get people into the music that I like to listen to. It's always nice to have other people to talk about your interests with. The second reason is that I like to see certain bands that I like succeed. To do that, they need to get heard and to get heard people need to know about them, so I street teamed. The final reason I street teamed is to get free stuff from some of the bands that I like.

Now in case you don't know what street teaming is, it is promoting a band by distributing sampler cds, postcards, stickers, posters and the like to people and promoting the band at concerts of other bands in similar genres. Usually what I have done in the past is include stickers and sampler cds with my bootleg trading (which I no longer due since I don't have the time for bootleg trading, so don't ask). I've also taken stickers and such to Hot Topic to distribute with people's purchases. Lastly, on occasion I've also passed out street team stuff at concerts.

For doing this, some bands will give out little tokens of their appreciation. It's usually not much--a nice poster (sometimes signed), an EP, dog tags, or other little trinkets, but I've gotten a few neat things in the past. Finger Eleven sent me an EP of acoustic tracks. I got a nice, autographed poster from Boy Hits Car. There's some other stuff I got as well, but I've forgotten what it all was.

For a while I kind of gave up on doing promotion stuff like this, but a month or so I've gotten back into it. Right now I'm doing some promotion for the bands Strata and Unearth. Strata sent me some posters, stickers, and postcards to hand out. Nothing too neat, but I like them so I've been handing out their stuff. Unearth, on the other hand, sent me some cool stuff.

Their street team stuff to hand out is only so-so (postcards and newspaper posters), but what they sent to their street teamers for helping out is impressive--a copy of their latest cd and a copy of one of their label mate's (Black Dahlia Murder) cds. Since they did something cool like that for their teamers, I'm way more inclined to promote them as opposed to a band who lacklusterly sends out only some promo material with no incentive for the street teamers to want to help. So, if you get the chance, visit Unearth's website and if you like their style, buy their cd. It's some REAL metal (not the crap they call metal on today's radio).

Over the weekend I finished reading Isaac Asimov's Foundation. I'd been meaning to read his Foundation series for quite some time (I think I've had the books sitting on my bookshelf since the end of high school, and now that I'm taking the time to do it, I am really appreciating how good Asimov's writing is in this series. I'm now trying to whip through Foundation and Empire simply because the whole universe that Asimov creates is simply so compelling and interesting.

What really amazes me about Foundation is that probably 80-90% of the book is dialogue. I was thoroughly amazed that the book didn't come off as more boring because of this, but instead I was drawn to the characters more. It was also interesting to see the approach this novel took to telling its story. It's broken up into a few main sections, each dealing with different characters and a different period of time (Asimov does have 1000+ years to attempt to chronicle in his Foundation novels).

Beyond all of this, I loved the concept of psychohistory--the mathematical predicting of the future of a society. It is a deterministic view of existence, yet it retains notions of free will in that it is impossible to predict the actions of a single human being, or small group of people, but yet through the fictitious science of psychohistory, the entire future of a society could be mapped. I can't recall offhand what philosopher also attempted to lay out a metaphysics that operated in this way, but I do remember finding it an interesting concept that I enjoyed studying.

If you are a sci-fi fan and somehow haven't read this novel yet, you owe it to yourself to check it out. You'll probably end up hooked, much like myself, and want to read the entire series all at once.

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