“These days, a big fat national commercial ad campaign with a major brand is like getting Most Added at Pop radio.”
——Joe Berman
Jesse Finds His Latest Can’t-Miss Entry Jammin’ on a Beach in the Sunshine State

By Jesse Beer-Dietz

This week, we spotlight a hot new rock band from Florida that we’re convinced has the goods. Also, check out my interview with Joe Berman and Shauna Krikorian, who head up MediaHorse, I ran it last week and got a good response, so I decided to post it again in case you missed it. Keep feedin’ the inbox: [email protected]

Orange Avenue
(http://www.myspace.com/orangeavenuemusic): This Daytona Beach-based five-piece pop/rock group, which has been deemed MTV Buzzworthy, is definitely one of 2011’s up-and-coming bands. Their new single “Just Refrain” is nothing less than addictive—even if you forget the words, which is doubtful—and the memorable melody will stick in your head like glue. With a strong set of instruments plus a great lead voice, this band has huge breakthrough potential. Keep your ears open, because you definitely don’t want to miss this sound.

MediaHorse is a new progressive licensing/publishing/ media marketing company started by music industry veterans Joe Berman and Shauna Krikorian. With a global outreach, MediaHorse specializes in synch licensing for the film, TV, commercial advertising, gaming and consumer products industries. Some of their 100 plus represented artists include She Wants Revenge, Kula Shaker, Carl Barat (ex-Libertines), and Andy Clockwise.

How did you get your start in the business?
: I started a little label in the mid '90s, which led to years of experience in the areas of production, A&R, promotion, marketing, etc—true to the DIY ethic. I also spent a great deal of time in management, as well as artist development. I would find and develop artists from overseas (England, Sweden, Australia, etc.) and put them on major labels here in the U.S. (Boy, those days are GONE!) I was managing an international artist that couldn't get arrested at the labels, but ended up doing about $350K in syncs. That was enough for me to make the transition into licensing.

: I got my start working as a music interviewer/writer in my early 20s. I worked for a small production company that had relationships with all of the major labels and created content for syndicated radio, Internet (music websites that were the predecessors to our blogs) and a few TV shows such as Access Hollywood. I basically interviewed everybody at one time or another.

I’m a big believer in syncs; I think they really can build and artist's career. Do you guys feel the same way?
: Absolutely. These days, a big fat national commercial ad campaign with a major brand is like getting Most Added at Pop radio.

: Yes, I believe syncs are more important than ever. We’ve all witnessed the entire model of the music business change over the past ten years, and many revenue streams that once kept an artist alive and kicking have dried up. Radio is not as impactful in breaking new artists or singles from established artists as it once was. These days getting a really powerful placement in a commercial or a TV show can bring attention to an artist (or even break a band in some cases) from an audience that may have never been exposed to the music. I know many bands that have created enough revenue from syncs to live on and the exposure can really help to put them on the map.

A lot of people do licensing; what do you guys believe sets yourself apart from the rest?
: It's interesting, we get asked this question quite frequently. To sum it up...the MediaHorse model is quite different. Unlike most traditional licensing houses, we have a much greater reach with deep relationships not only in film and television, but also in the commercial advertising and consumer products arena's. We also have a great International strategic partnership network in place. Did you know that a potato chip commercial in Malaysia can net a little indie hipster band from Echo Park $100k?

: We’ve both been doing creative licensing for a long time so our relationships in the community are solid. Beyond that, thinking outside the box to create new ways to license music to emerging platforms such a consumer products or working with our overseas partners to produce creative initiatives for their clients are ways in which I think we set ourselves apart.

Have you ever helped launch an unsigned artist through licensing?
: I have helped many unsigned artists garner major national exposure through creative licensing. But keep in mind, with what we do, the whole "hit single" theory goes out the window. I have placed artist songs in commercials that in a million years would never be deemed a "smash single" by a record company.

Shauna: Sure, I’ve helped with the launch of a number of artists by getting them placed in some major TV shows, trailer campaigns or films. It’s always interesting to see what really works to picture, as it’s often not the single.

What has more impact, a show promo campaign/trailer or a feature in a show or movie?
: Promos tend to have a longer lasting impression than "in show" uses...trailers are also really good (pssst, and they pay pretty well!)

Shauna: It really depends on the project, the usage and how well received it all is. Indie movies with amazing soundtracks can be very effective in breaking an artist. A major commercial campaign or being featured in a music heavy TV show like Grey’s Anatomy is probably the most powerful in launching an artist’s career through sync. It really just depends on the way it’s used and in what media, look how it launched Sia with Six Feet Under.

Last question, what candy best describes your personality?
: Jelly Belly's...you never know what you're gonna get!
Shauna: Hmm…it would be a bag of Skittles. Colorful, with an “S” on every one… taste the rainbow!


Are you free Wednesday afternoon? (11/12a)
How's that for a tease, Bieber Nation? (11/12a)
Not the same as the old bosses (11/12a)
This sure feels like her moment. (11/12a)
It's down to two bidders. (11/12a)
They'll soon be here, and then we can start obsessing about who'll win.
Forget Brexit--it's our yearly survey of doings in Blighty. And if you still can't forget Brexit, try drinking.
Who's going to land the hottest unsigned property in music?
That's what Hollywood smells like. Seriously. 24/7.

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