Mesa Band Makes Ridiculous Offer To "Music Journalist"

Categories: Weird
MusicJournalistWanted.JPG
Are you an aspiring music critic? If so, Mesa band Trains Eye View has a gig for you!

There's no pay. And, ummm, your work won't be published anywhere. Oh, also, you're not really being edited by someone who knows anything about journalism or could serve as a reference in the future.

But, as this awesome craigslist ad, titled "Music Journalist Wanted!" explains, your "review" will be used in the press kit for the band. Here's the hilarious text of the ad a colleague sent me. To save some poor schlub the indignity of completing this task, I'll go ahead and bite the bullet by reviewing the songs on their MySpace.

Local band Trains Eye View is in need of a Music Journalist to write a review on their music and the band itself. The band would use this review in their Press Kit which is sent out to venues and record labels to give them an idea of what the music sounds like and what the band is about. The band is scheduled to play a show at The Sail Inn in Tempe on Monday November 15th @ 8:00PM this would be a good chance to meet them and do your review. The band is not able at this time to pay you for your talents but if you're interested in gaining some experience as a journalist, then please contact Sue @ (801)...................

Yeah, so that's all great. Here's a little blurb they can use in their press kit, attributed to Phoenix New Times:

Trains Eye View sounds like one of those projects where a girl who can kind of sing impresses a guy she knows who is eager to put the guitar lessons his parents paid for to work so he drags her into his "home studio" (actually just a Mac Book with two microphones crudely connected through a USB hub) and tells her to let loose. She is flattered beyond words and happily complies. TEV singer Sue Jones' voice is strong and the melodies aren't bad on songs like "Preacher" and "Cloud 9," but the ideas are clearly not fully formed, and the poor sound quality makes it hard to take them seriously.

The tracks on their MySpace fail not for lack of earnest passion or because of a paucity of natural talent, but because they shouldn't exist. It's just too damned easy to hit "Record" these days. So many bands hear about so-called "MySpace success stories" and think it's as easy as making a rough recording of what should have been a practice session then tossin' it up on the ol' interwebs where the right person stumbles upon it. Next thing you know, the labels are in a bidding war! Sorry, folks, that ain't how it goes. Bands like the Arctic Monkeys -- arguably the first and best MySpace band of note -- didn't do it that way. No, they busted their asses getting things right before they took their songs public. That's what Trains Eye View needs to do -- practice and play out regularly to develop some chops before worrying about how to promote the band.

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14 comments
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Poop Titty
Poop Titty

...sarcasm, ironicy & mean-spiritedness...

Those are editorial guidelines 'round these parts, in these times...

Taniawarf
Taniawarf

sarcasm and IRONY in writing makes things more entertaining to read. It is soooooo easy to write something that comes across as sarcastic.... see I couldn't even do it. Most people have to state "that was meant to be sarcastic". I don't know if this was "mean-spirited", but listen "Shitty Titty", you shouldn't act like you're all self-righteous and don't make fun of people who act stupid sometimes. We all do it.Three cheers for "ironicy"... i mean "moronicy"

Ashley
Ashley

While it seems that this band is, to put it politely, less than professional, they clearly have some understanding of how this business works. They know they need a press kit after all. And they ARE publishing the writer's work: it's being sent to the press remember? Sure, the name of the writer may not be on this information, but how often does that even happen anyway?

The band should have said in their Craigslist post that they will recommend you to other bands or something like that. Some kind of incentive for a writer to do this. I am in PR and I have done things for free. It's worth the contacts and the experience. I also have training as a journalist and I can tell you: it would create terrible bias if the band paid the writer to act as a journalist for them.

Boo
Boo

this is pretty simple. yeah, the band is dumb for posting something like that instead of just asking a friend to do it. but cizmar is an asshole and loses credibility as a journalist by providing them with a "review." it wasn't a review, it was a sarcastic and mean spirited blurb that was meant only to put them down for the post and had very little to do with their music. over half of it is about how it's too easy to record and they should have developed some chops. i'd have to say the same is true for writing these days. maybe martin should hone his skills on some shitty attacks on bands before he starts writing real reviews....oh wait, looks like he is on that path! this piece of writing shouldn't exist.

i love martin cizmar
i love martin cizmar

I'm mixed about this.. I'm a musician, and I understand the desire to commission some content to help for publicity purposes. When you don't have a huge presence, there aren't a lot of journalists dying to review your band... and if you're trying to put together some sort of media package, fine, maybe cast your line out there.

Doing it in a public forum like Craigslist was the mistake. Everyone knows a writer, don't they? I think they sort of deserve the harshness for making a public declaration for media attention, but I also think it makes Martin Cizmar a prettttty big douche for finding it and going out of his way to publicly humiliate the band. I didn't think the band's post was a completely unreasonable one.. but they may have been better off going with someone who they knew personally, rather than leaving it open for elitist douches like Martin to grab onto.

But it's good to see that Martin is writing about something that doesn't lead readers to believe that he's getting BJs from Dear and the Headlights for gushing about them in the paper.

i love martin cizmar
i love martin cizmar

However, I do not wish that he get hit by a truck. Verbal lashings will suffice.

miles
miles

I usually disagree with Cizmar, but on this I agree. Criticism is just that, if you can't take it don't put your music out there.

Michael Lopez
Michael Lopez

This is exactly what I have to do with YAFI every week. We tell bands that the reviews are "often harsh" and yet I still get angry comments telling me how awful I am a writer and how "mean" I am. Those commenters that like to call us out like that don't realize that we, ourselves, are putting our work out there for them to judge.

So who's really the mean ones? Martin sure as shit didn't tell anyone to "get hit by a truck."

miles
miles

When it gets personal is when it become bullshit. It's no long reasonable criticism of art, it's pointless mudslinging.

I'm a musician--I've had my stuff reviewed here, sometimes positively and sometime not. Personally I don't care how a reviewer reviews it, as long as they give it a fair shake. I'd prefer they are merciless. There's plenty of mediocre/bad music out there--it's reviewer's jobs to sift through the crap and let people know what is good. Sometimes that is perceived as "meanness" and "cruelty". Unfortunately people can't discern the difference between meanness and criticism.

Jim Miles

Dude
Dude

the difference is that cizmar went out of his way to do this. the band probably did not personally ask for martin cizmar to review their songs. that is why martin cizmar is a sad pathetic man.

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Humbug
Humbug

You are a bad mean man, Martin Cizmar. Coming from such an esteemed "journalist" as yourself, as well! You are such a pompous asshole. Why do you have to put down this band, regardless of their merit, or lack of tact?

You are just a big bully, picking on the unexperienced and naive. Go get hit by a truck.

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