Monday, 30 July 2012

SITE NEWS: 250,000 Page Views! Thank you's and best moments so far...



A few months ago I reported that this music blog had received over 100,000 page views since its birth in 2010. So now as the site becomes more popular, I am pleased to announce that this figure has increased to 250,000. That's quarter of a million. I do keep an eye on my visitor stats, not because I want myself to be well known, but because I want to achieve my aim of introducing as much good music to as many people as possible. Therefore the more the page views grow, the more the awareness of top quality music spreads. 

This site first appeared on March 13th 2010, when I hosted radio shows on various internet stations, launching a website with details of the music played on my shows. The posts were few and far between but gradually the frequency of new updates increased, leading to the relaunch of the site on November 19th 2010 as a general blog for music old and new. At first it was mainly based around album reviews and my personal music-related memories, but February 2011 saw the introduction of 'Song For Today', a daily feature including an essential track, the first being Gene's 'As Good As It Gets' on February 9th. Due to also having to work in a day job at a demanding company it meant that on some days I wouldn't have had time to update the site with the latest track, so in some cases i'd have to post two songs the next day. 

Soon I began to include more music news items on the site, most of these sourced from the NME, but some including stories that the still-popular music news site chose to ignore. A rare interview has occured every so often, subjects including Dodgy, Northern Uproar and Port Erin. Every now and again you'll see the odd gig review, along with galleries of my music photography, and maybe some (often badly filmed) gig videos. Now in August 2012 there's lots more to discover here, including album streams, '12 Of The Best' features, album previews, the occasional Random Musical Item, Spotify playlists, opinions, recommendations and lots more. 

So as the monthly page view count continues to increase, the all time number has reached the 250,000 milestone, surely a good reason to reflect on the last couple of years and to take a look at some of the best moments this site has been involved in. Here's some of my favourites moments/incidents that Mr Scott:Music has seen so far... 

Midge Ure doesn't take kindly to my review... 
After seeing Midge Ure playing an acoustic gig seven years ago, I was interested in hearing more Ultravox material other than the obvious big hits. After buying a number of their LPs, I gradually learned that the pre-Midge Ultravox led by John Foxx were much better, but was still pleased to hear that the "classic" 'Vienna' era line up were reforming and releasing a new album. Their first new material for 26 years appeared a few months ago in the form of the inaccurately titled 'Brilliant', an album that proved to be an underwhelming disappointment. Giving the album an honest overview, I made sure I mentioned the album's strengths as well as its obvious weaknesses, while commenting that "This album doesn't turn out to be a great comeback, but it isn't hopeless enough to be called a true disaster." But clearly the 5.2 out of 10 that I gave the album wasn't enough for Midge Ure, who after seeing the review, took to Twitter to send me a tweet that read simply "Twat". Cue a series of jokes on Facebook regarding Midge's dismissal of my words, the best being "he should have just ignored the criticism and said 'this means nothing to me'"... 

Stephen Jones reviews the singles... The criminally underrated genius that is Stephen Jones is not just the author of all those Babybird classics and a great writer, but also one of the most hilariously surreal people on Twitter. During another ill-fated outing for England's footballers during Euro 2012, Jones tweeted some of his own commentary on the match, including the priceless quote "I’ve never seen one ball look so awful since they found Hitler dead in his bunker". 

His opinions on the televised coverage of T In The Park was so entertaining that I (half jokingly) suggested that he should write some reviews for the site. Being a massive fan of this man's music, I was most pleased when he agreed to review a number of recent releases, of course in his own unique fashion. Describing ska-punks-turned-chavs The King Blues he commented "Don't people like this stumble across these reviews then vow to hunt you down and kill you?". He referred to a certain group as "Franz Turdinand" and imagined the prospect of "Vanilla Ice's crossover reggae funk fusion album, with Jedward on the steel drums, tied up and covered in honey and fire ants". But best of all were his thoughts on the contrived pompousity of Muse's 'Survival" and it's author: "I was in a cafe in North London a while back and Bellendamy and Kate Hudson came in with her kid and they seemed very nice and quiet. You half expect his Freddie Mercury pants to explode and for him to jump on the table and finger fuck his axe, but no. Quite disappointing..." A legend. 

I become Northern Uproar's biographer... Certain sections of the music press probably scoffed when Manchester combo Northern Uproar announced that they were reforming, but I certainly wasn't one to display such shallow and uninformed ignorance. In fact their 1997 hit 'Anyway You Look' was one of my favourite songs that soundtracked my youth, and I regard the group's first two albums are sorely overlooked Britpop gems. Talking to members of the band was pleasing enough, but being able to publish an exclusive interview with frontman Leon Meya was a real honour. The guys liked my interview so much that I was asked to write them an updated biography for their website and for use in press releases. Since then I have continued to show my support for this excellent band, although I wish they'd play a gig somewhere that isn't at least 200 miles away from where I live... 

Gaining various valued supporters... One band who have always offered encouragement to the site are UK psychobilly pioneers Frenzy, led by legendary bass devil Steve Whitehouse. My review of the band's superb 2010 album 'In The Blood' was one of the first in-depth write ups I had worked on in a long time, and thanking me for my glowing praise of the album, Steve was also impressed with the quality of my writing. This gave me the confidence to carry on with the blog and to make it grow into what it is today. 

Special thanks must also go to the guys from Doyle And The Fourfathers, who as well as releasing one of the finest debut albums in recent memory, became early supporters of the site and sang my praises on their Facebook page. Sadly this incredible band have recently split up, signalling the end of one of the very few modern groups whose music truly reflected the times. They will be missed and certainly they will never be forgotten in terms of this site's history. 

However, my proudest moment so far was probably winning the approval of Dodgy, a band who I have absolutely loved for many years now and whose music is certainly very close to my heart. Drummer Mathew Priest treated the site to one of the first interviews regarding the magnificent album 'Stand Upright In A Cool Place', their first album in 16 years, and the guys were even kind enough to post a message of congratulations when the blog passed 100,000 page views. 

Others I'd like to wish special thanks to in particular include the amazing Ultrasound, Stephen Jones, Mark Morriss, Northern Uproar, Queen Elvis, Port Erin, Thought Forms and every other band and artist who has ever helped out or shared the blog with their fans during the first couple of years. There's too many of you to mention! I'd also like to thank everyone at BBC 6Music, the good folks at Raves From The Grave, Geoff Barrow and all at Invada, Leah at Warp Records, Simon Adlington, everyone at the Too Pure Singles Club, Ollie at Top Button Digital and the countless other people who continue to alert me to the finest music around. Lastly but of course not least the biggest thank you goes to all of my loyal readers... I will continue to serve you well and deliver more of the very finest music there is. Unlike some sites/publications, I will not let you down... 

Some random facts... 

There is one particular item that has generated more page views than any other so far, also statistically meaning that the band who the piece was related to became the most popular band or artist on this site. Who do you think it was? Maybe a huge act like Coldplay or Muse with massive fanbases? Perhaps an act who have recently made various big announcements, such as Blur or the Stone Roses? Could it have been a news article relating to the death of one of the sadly missed artists we have lost over the last couple of years? Was it one of the subjects of the exclusive interviews that have featured here? None of those at all. The band who have so far attracted more readers to this site than any other are in fact folk rock legends the Levellers, who released their 9th album 'Static On The Airwaves' in June of this year. A preview of the album with information, videos and links was getting lots of visits and ended up scoring even more when I added my review of the album, only the second proper review of the record to appear anywhere. The page still continues to get plenty of views, proving that this fine British band still have a keen fanbase. 

The largest part of this site's audience are from the USA: 98,320 page views from the big land. In second place is the UK with 67,157, Germany with 11,512 , Denmark with 7262 and France with 6495 . Making up the rest of the audience are visitors from Canada, Italy, Australia, Brazil, Spain as well as lots of other great nation's... 

A graph of the site's visitor numbers is here...

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