How to get the album for FREE or REALLY cheap.

February 19th, 2009

11002014538I thought that would get your attention! :)

Our album just went live today on one of my favorite digital music stores: AmieStreet.com.  Amie Street has one of the most creative pricing schemes I’ve ever seen.  Every album starts out free, and gradually increases in price up to a maximum of $0.98 per song. SO, if you’re the first person to snag our album off of Amie Street, it’s yours FREE!  If you’re the second person it will cost you like $0.50 for the album, and so on.  Interested?  Check it out here.

So what if you’re not first?  No biggie!  Our album is already listed on Lala.com which is giving 50 free web songs to new signups, and you can always buy the album for web-only play (wherever you have an internet connection) for $0.80.  That’s right, the whole album for $0.80.

Need to have an Mp3 copy on your machine ? No biggie!  In the next few days you’ll see our album show up on eMusic.com. That’s good news, because eMusic is giving out 40 free downloads to any new sign-ups.  Even if you’re not new, eMusic is a great place to shop — songs only end up costing about $0.30 each.  Check ‘em out!

Finally, if you’re into the subscription thing, you can signup with napster for a 14-day UNLIMITED download free trial, AND 10 free non-subscription downloads (conveniently JUST enough for our 10 track album :D).  Check it out!

As always, don’t forget to leave a review if you have a few extra minutes.  

We’ll see YOU in Hillsdale, MI this MARCH!

Vote for us @ Ourstage.com!!

February 16th, 2009

Want to help TEG get noticed? Go to http://www.ourstage.com and vote for our music. Currently, we have 3 songs in 3 different categories:

Come Along in Indie Rock
I and you in Rock
News in Alternative Rock.

You can view our EPK (electronic press kit) here. It’s got some of our tracks up, as well as our bio and links to our other websites. Share with friends and anyone you know in the music industry!

OurStage is an interesting concept in music judging: you can’t just search for us and vote as the artists are all presented randomly. You just vote for the best of the random 4 that are presented. But everyone has an equal chance of showing up in the voting bracket - so go to the site as often as you can, and when you see TEG pop up, go ahead and vote for us! And vote for other good music, too. You have to register to vote, but it doesn’t take long. It’s a great way to discover new music, and support your favorite indie band. =)

NUMBERS!

January 28th, 2009

Don't forget to grab the album art!

Don't forget to grab the album art!


The “unofficial” numbers are in.  

The result?  YOU still rock.

While the sales figures for the last week weren’t quite as good as we had hoped - and again, these numbers are unofficial and possibly innaccurate - they still were definitely a sign of success.  Last week on iTunes alone we had 263 individual purchases from 20 different metro areas across the U.S.  

Not too shabby.  

Definitely not earth-shattering or chart topping numbers, but a huge success none-the-less.  

Want more proof?  Below is a good summary of some of the awesomeness that YOU have made possible:
 

Website stats — 

  • At this point, we’ve had over 1,800 views of the site, from 33 different countries, and with 21 different default languages on their web-browsers.  I guess music really is the universal language! :P
     
  • On Wednesday (Jan 21st) we released a “Thank YOU!” free download-able track (go get it yourself!) on the website.  It’s a special version of “Whirlwind” not available on the purchased album.  That track alone has been downloaded 62 times.
     
  • 29 users have signed in at our site to become members.  Users can sign-in with their logins for Facebook, Google, Yahoo, or AIM. 
     

 Social Networks / Services —

  • On Facebook our “Help us MAKE HISTORY!” event garnered over 1700 total invitations, and over 300 “Yes” or “Maybe” responses.
     
  • Between Facebook and MySpace, we have 70 new fans since the album release on January 5th.
     
  • Our MySpace profile has been viewed 554 times.
     
  • On Twitter (@theeasterngate) we’ve gathered 152 followers in the last two weeks, including MTV Music (@MTV_Music), EMI Music Norway (@EMINO), ATT Mobile Music (@attmobilemusic), and several music blogs and radio stations.
     

Music sites —

  • Our album “Seraphim” is being sold on FIVE music distribution sites (iTunes, Amazon MP3, Napster, LaLa.com, Shockhound.com) and will be on FOUR others within the next two weeks (eMusic, Rhapsody, AmieStreet.com, and GroupieTunes.com).
     
  • On our first day for sale on Amazon MP3 (January 5th), we reached #200 on the best-selling albums of the day, and #1 on the “Movers and Shakers” chart.  Since then, we’ve peaked back into the top 1000 albums in sales rank 6 times.
     
  • Between Amazon MP3 and iTunes, 13 fans have left reviews — all 5 stars.  We have a perfect 5 star rating at both stores right now.

Follow us on Twitter!!

January 27th, 2009

Transparency has become a pretty popular buzzword these days. While you’re able to follow The Eastern Gate as a band on Twitter, we wanted to be able to give you, the fans, a little bit closer glimpse into the mysteries of those within the band. Alex and Josh are regulars on Twitter and wanted to give you the chance follow them. You can either find their tweets on their respective bio pages or at the following links:

Alex - http://www.twitter.com/alexlinebrink
Josh - http://www.twitter.com/jdpeterson

Follow us, and thanks again for listening :) We will have more news soon on the damage of our bomb last Monday!!!

Here’s a Treat — Our “Thank You”

January 20th, 2009

Yeah, Noah rocks too.

Yeah, Noah rocks too.


Because you ROCK.  

A few of you have noticed that the version of “Whirlwind” is a bit different than the album release.  You’re right — we were messing around afterwards and Ethan mixed up this version with a rad intro and a re-mixed solo.  

So, as our “Thanks” for your participation and support in the events of the last week, here it is — our present to you, absolutely FREE.

Whirlwind w/ Intro (right-click and click “Save As” to download)

In other news, I can’t say it enough: you guys have been INCREDIBLE.  Over the last week we’ve gotten over 1,500 views of the website from 29 different countries, with 18 different native languages on their web-browsers.  I guess music really is universal, eh?

We haven’t seen the album hit the iTunes charts yet, but we are still watching, so KEEP ‘EM COMING!  I’m wondering if the iTunes charts only work on an extended period of time.  Believe it or not, we’ve actually made it back into the top 1000 on Amazon MP3 twice in the last two days.  Way to go!

Thanks again.  The positive responses keep rolling in.  We’ve had people writing us about how inspiring we’ve been, and a rather large MI band by the name of Darling Down ask us to play with them. 

Who knows — if this kind of response keeps up, we might have to find ourselves in the same area again for long enough to play a few more shows :)

There are always more updates coming, so why not subscribe so you don’t have to keep checking back here?  Links are in the top-right for both RSS and E-Mail updates.

Have an AWESOME night!

Midnight Update: What a DAY!

January 20th, 2009

Waiting for the results...

Waiting for the results...

Congratulations on an awesome day!  

The e-mails, Facebook comments, and iTunes reviews keep rolling in with congratulations, thanks, and encouragement.  If it stops at that, we’ve already done something awesome.  Any event that causes that many people to rally together and make a stand for something this noble is a big deal!  

So far, I haven’t seen us crack into the “Top 100 Albums” chart on iTunes, but that doesn’t mean ALL hope is lost!  For one, the chart hasn’t caught up to midnight yet — it’s still at around 10:24 PM.  Second, the chart might be charting for the LAST 24 hours ONLY.  That would mean our positioning wouldn’t even have a chance to start until the chart time-stamp hits midnight, and more like 7 or 8 AM (so, we need to check back tomorrow).  And third, we made a lot of noise and momentum today!  We’re still waiting on at least two feature newspaper articles to come out, so there’s a good chance the press to come AND the already built momentum could push us into the charts sometime in the next few days!

One thing I do know is this: YOU put on QUITE a show.  The reviews on iTunes are rolling in, and people are talking about our album that I’ve never met before.  It’s a beautiful thing!

Not everybody was in love with what we were doing, though.  At about 8:20 PM (at the heat of our most active stream of web traffic) the site was hacked.  I apologize tremendously if you came during the next couple hours when it may have been dysfunctional or trying to push weird java-scripts at you.  On the other side, though, congratulations on being part of something so passionate that it caused controversy! :)  Deep in my heart, I believe it was a jealous record label that hired that hacker :)

The updates will still be coming tomorrow, so keep checking back.  Also, be sure to check out the newest site feature: the Shout-Box!  Feel free to shout something out to the site visitors by typing your message in the sidebar :)  You can even put video in there.

Finally, don’t stop spreading the word!  If you like our music, and you know of anyone else who would like it, PLEASE send the word on!  Even if our 1-day bomb doesn’t end up landing us that top 100 spot, we’ve covered some MAJOR ground for a no-name band and certainly hope for more!

Do you have any questions? Comments? Ideas?  Success stories? PLEASE drop us a line!  You’ve been the source of any success we’ve had, and your input is IMPORTANT to us.

Keep ROCKING!

-Alex & The Eastern Gate

Today YOU decide.

January 19th, 2009

Bombs away.

Bombs away.

It’s Monday - January 19th, 2009. 

Our album released on Amazon EXACTLY two weeks ago, and YOU made it hit #200 on the top-selling albums charts.  It was a feat to be remembered.  Thank you.

Now it’s time to make it count.

If you haven’t already, read about our mission to BOMB iTunes and what it means to independent music EVERYWHERE.

If you want to help as much as you can, do everything on our “2-Minutes or LESS” list.

But please, stop reading this already and…

GO BUY THE ALBUM ON ITUNES!!!

And by the way, here’s the chart we want to crack.  Use it to keep track of our progress.  We’ll also try to keep you up-to-date on here throughout the day.

Operation: BOMB iTunes —- GO!

(P.S. — if you don’t use iTunes and refuse to do so for us, we’d gladly support a purchase from anyone else.  Links are on the nav bar.)

2 MINUTES OR LESS: 10 Ways YOU Can Help MAKE HISTORY!

January 18th, 2009

Hey everybody —

We need your HELP, and NOW!

And we know you’re super busy, so here are 10 ways you can help MAKE HISTORY in TWO MINUTES OR LESS :::

Read the rest of this entry »

RAVE Reviews

January 16th, 2009

Thanks everyone!  

Below are just a few of the awesome reviews we’re getting from all over.  Thanks again — you’re awesome.  Stay tuned — we’re already getting interest from the press, and expecting a barrage of coverage on Monday.  Keep spreading the word!  And if you or anyone you know are working in journalism (including popular blogs), media, radio (online or offline), or anything that could get us some extra exposure — HOOK US UP!  We’re giving out free downloads of a few songs to press for review or radio play.  

One of the more interesting and eclectic albums, drawing from a wide range of inspiration from Led Zeppelin to Radiohead, from traditional irish melodies to blues riffs. Melodically driven, soaring instrumentals and and creative arrangements from a group of talented young musicians. … keep and eye out for these people in the future.   — M. Rhiannon Sheehan - Brooklyn, NY (via Amazon)

… The Eastern Gate succeeds in running in their first musical endeavor is laudatory; the inclusion of less finished and polished material is admirable. One feels that they are experiencing the musical process, which few bands are able to draw the listener into. — Jason Carr, Hillsdale, MI (via Amazon)

These tracks showcase a variety of styles from acoustic folk in “I and You,” to pop/alternative in “Light and Sound,” and 80s rock in “Rock and Roll Nun.” Needless to say, there is something for everyone in this album. All in all a great album from small town superstars. — Dorian Blakley - Minneapolis, MN (via Amazon)

… Each song on the album speaks of influences in different genres, and their wide-ranging stylistic ventures ensure a fascinating blend of melodic prowess, catchy tunes, and moments of sheer brilliance. The group breaks through the mold not only in their clever instrumentation but in their inspired use of violin to provide melodic counterpoint to the vocals and break free of the standard over-saturated musical genres. For those looking for a driving, virtuosic tour-de-force, look no further than The Eastern Gate’s debut album, “Seraphim.”  — Allen J. Shoff - Akron, OH (via Amazon)

Seraphim is awesome!!  — KalyanAkkipeddi - Ooty, India (via Twitter)

I bought the album and … I love the website, too!  — Tonya Kay - Los Angeles, CA (via Twitter)
 

Thanks again — you guys ROCK.

Help Us Make History

January 14th, 2009

We call ourselves “The Eastern Gate”.  

The Album Cover for "Seraphim", by The Eastern Gate

The Album Cover for "Seraphim", by The Eastern Gate

That’s only because the name we used to go by (and all of our fans know us as) was taken by a Taiwanese heavy-metal group.  We changed it because we didn’t want to get sued.  Two Mondays ago we released an album.  We finished it last spring, but have held on to it - debating whether to get professionally mastered.  In the end, we didn’t.  Freshly graduated college students don’t have the money to get an album professionally mastered.

So, with frustration, we released everything AS-IS.  We did it mostly to get the thing off of our shoulders, and to get our three biggest fans from the college days to stop asking when they can get a copy.  It’s funny how loud 3 people can be sometimes.

So we released it on Monday, January 5th, 2009.  I uploaded it to a music distribution service, we put up notices on Facebook and MySpace that the album was available, and within hours our loyal fan-base had sky-rocketed us to the top 1000 albums on Amazon MP3.  

A couple hours later we were still climbing, now into the top 500.  Finally, at about 6 PM, we reached our top spot at#200 on the Amazon best-selling mp3 albums of the day.  Not only were we on the top albums charts, but we also reached #1 on the “Movers and Shakers” list.  

The Eastern Gate's "Seraphim" - #1 on Amazon's "Movers and Shakers" list

The Eastern Gate's "Seraphim" - #1 on Amazon's "Movers and Shakers" list

We were speechless.  How in the world did an amature, unsigned band of poor, just graduated college students (from a college of only 1,200 in a town of less than 7,000) manage to crack an un-mastered album into Amazon MP3’s top 200 in only a matter of hours?!

On top of that, how did we do it with just a Facebook event, and a new MySpace page with 4 friends?

It seems there is something to this social networking thing.  When people get something in their mind - when people find something they like (un-mastered or not) - word-of-mouth still reigns supreme.  People who are passionate about an idea (or maybe about a music album) can spread popularity faster than ANY record-label-backed guerrilla marketing campaign.  

Unfortunately, the mild success we had with our Amazon MP3 launch isn’t enough to prove to a lot of people that an independent no-name band can still achieve some sort of chart-topping success in today’s day and age.  

So, we’re, going to try things again, and this time with a bit of planning (not much).  

Our album was released on iTunes this week, and we want to try to make history this time.  How?  By making it onto the iTunes front-page.  

Independent artists have made it big before.  Just think of Death Cab for Cutie, or Nine Inch Nails with their latest post-label launches.  But it’s either taken time (in Death Cab for Cutie’s case) or already established fame and marketing power (Nine Inch Nails).  Youtube has made a few artists popular, but it’s a long process, and seems to be focused only on niche performances (Bo Burnham anybody?). 

We want to make the iTunes charts only 2 weeks after the debut of our un-mastered album.  We want to make it as an independent artist who has 80 fans on Facebook and just got our 6th fan on MySpace.  We want to make it to the iTunes front-page because YOU liked our music and bought our album.

So what’s the catch?  Obviously we don’t have the marketing power of the big guys.   We don’t have record-label money to throw behind a huge ad campaign.  We don’t have 1,000,000 MySpace friends, or even a Youtube video.  All we have is a blog, some good music, and YOU.  

So we’re counting on YOU for this one.  We’re counting on you to hear music you like, and pass it on.  We’re counting on you to become our fan on Facebook and MySpace, and to tell your friends to do the same.  We’re counting on you to DIGG, Stumble, e-mail, and share this page/site in ANY way you can.  And PLEASE, sign-in on the right with your Google or Twitter account so your badge proudly displays as a member/fan of this site, and share the sign-in with your friends!

And most of all, we’re counting on YOU to buy our album on iTunes on Monday, January 19th, 2009.  If we can get everyone to buy at exactly the same time, maybe for just one day we can prove that an indie band really can go from zero to famous in just a couple weeks.  YOU don’t need the bank-roll of a record-label to tell you what good music is.  Decide for yourself, and prove to the world that they can decide for themselves too.  

So fan us up, join our Facebook and Google  Calendar events, and bring all your friends.  Together we’re going to make music history, or at least have a wild ride trying!

-Alex