How to really get the public on music’s side.

Musicians seem to be on a permanent campaign for more money, and a larger share of whatever’s going.

There’s no doubt it’s tough to make a living in music. There are more musicians than there are living wages, and as an industry the way the money is shared out often leaves all but the top players out in the cold.

But beyond a general sense of fairness, that music and artists should be paid something and should if they are good be able to make a living, the public seems at best only mildly interested in music’s fair pay debate. Why should that be? And what can be done about it?

Thirty years ago Dire Straits summed up one attitude to pop success with ‘Money for Nothing’. Then or now, scamming it and behaving badly is not going to convert even passionate music fans into musicians’ rights lobbyists. And the Tidal megastar love in might have been a PR disaster if anyone had cared enough.

So, instead of esoteric arguments about how to share out 0.07 cents between the cast of thousands behind a popular song, here’s a shortlist of suggestions to help really get the public on music’s side.

1. Show the public at every opportunity what a lot of hard work is involved in creating, performing, and recording music. Tell them about the sacrifices we make to get just the right sound, the obsessive practising that delivers the perfect inflection, and the sheer nerve of putting a life and a career on the line day after day. If if they don’t like the result, they can’t disparage the effort.

2. When we claim to be doing something, make sure we can back it up. Sure you can mime to your own guitar solo or vocal on a video. But if it supposed to be sung, sing it, don’t fiddle it together with Melodyne and brazen it out. If it’s a work of studio wizardry that is fine too, as long as the truth is told.

3. Be scrupulously fair to others in our own industry, by crediting all performers, making sure the songwriters are acknowledged, and the information is all there so everyone involved gets paid properly. Nobody sides with a cheat; nobody can break through a wall of honesty and virtue.

4. Hardest of all, don’t oversell music! We’re not going to fix the global economy. When people say they can’t live without music they don’t really mean it. At best we are the sign that a society is developed and civilised enough to care about more than subsistence. A little gratitude for any help we get will go a long way.

If we show respect to each other, and make it easier to work with us and help us, and if we are duly thankful for the privilege of working with one of mankind’s greatest gifts and achievements, there is no doubt that the public, and the politicians who represent them, will reciprocate.

This post originally appeared on Paul Sanders’ blog Ratpie.

Forthcoming Releases – out July 31st

Our weekly run down of from state51 labels.


Jammer by The Chap. Lo Recordings.

Rejoice – they’re back! Jammer rocks. It’s catchy and fun but, of course, it has The Chap’s characteristic bite. Taken from their forthcoming new album.

Out on 31st July 2015


Carotene Dreams EP by Lindo Man. Jalapeno Records.

Jalapeno’s latest signing Lindo Man delivers a wonderfully eclectic and bass-ridden debut.

Out 31st July 2015.


Ain’t No Rock N Roll Rookie by Johnny Moped. Damaged Goods.

Well this is exciting. The first 7″ since 1978 from these proto-punk pioneers. And it doesn’t stop there. The single will be followed later in the year by their first album since 1990’s ‘The Search For Xerxes’.

Out 31st July 2015


Silica by Nymbus. Slime Recordings.

Silica is American producer Nymbus’ debut release on Slime. The title track is ethereal and melancholic drum & bass and the release comes with two garage remixes from Blackboxx and Aaron Static.

Out 27th July 2015



Turbulent by Luke Gibson and Carlo Gambino. Midnight Social Recordings. 

Straight up house grooves.

Out 27th July 2015


Kiss Chase by Maui. Strong Island Recordings.

A sun soaked and rather grimey indie banger. Fun.

Out 27th July 2015

Release Recap – July 3rd

Happy July! Here is  the latest in of our new release catch up, bringing you up to speed with state51’s great new music.

1. Piney GirMr. Hyde’s Wild Ride.


A favourite in the state51 office. Piney Gir’s sixth album, released on Damaged Goods. iTunes gets an exclusive version including 3 extra tracks.

A retro delight…” – The Guardian

…open-hearted pop that has you clutching your knees with glee” – Drowned In Sound

Exuberant, bursts with joy, divine and sometimes mournful” – Q

The type of open-hearted pop that has you clutching your knees with glee” – DROWNED IN SOUND

A honky-tonkin’ celebration of the holy pleasures of the flesh” – THE WORD

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2. AmbassadeursPatterns.


Patterns is the debut album from the much-championed UK electronica artist, Ambassadeurs: bass heavy, ethereal electronica, through to dark ambient moments, and shimmering, melodic techno.

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3. Ephemerals, Nothin Is Easy (Deluxe Edition).


Crossing the London – New York divide, Ephemerals were the breakthrough soul act of 2014 and one of the hottest tickets for 2015 festivals with Glastonbury, Bestival and Mostly Jazz lined up for the UK. This deluxe re-issue includes new tracks.

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4. Bad Habit, Screens.


if you have any love in your heart for UKG, this EP is for you – with a single release, Bad Habit stakes his claim as one of the best and brightest operating in garage right now.

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You can listen to all of these on our Release Recap Spotify playlist. Enjoy!



Forthcoming releases – out July 20th

Coming soon from state51…

Cornbrail Acid 2.5 – Beatwife (LOVJP01, Love Love Records)

Album (14 tracks.) Out 20th Jul 2015.


Looking at You – Ambassadeurs feat. C Duncan (LT012, Lost Tribe Records)

Single (4 tracks.) Out 24th July 2015.


Departures – Owl & Mouse (Fika044, Fika Recordings)

Album (11 tracks). Out 24th July 2015.


Mind – The Ancients (HUM-11  Human Label)

Album (14 tracks.) Out 21st July 2015.



EP (5 tracks.) Out 24th July 2015.


Throwback: 2.0 – S.E.F., Lost & Found & KG3 (SOR016, Switched On Records)

EP (three tracks.) Out 24th July 2015.


5 Years of Gruuv, Vol. 4 – Various Artists (GRU5YR4, Gruuv)

EP (4 tracks.) Out 20th July 2015.


Pony – Strange Cages (SIR011, Strong Island Recordings)

Single (1 track.) Out 20th July 2015.


Coolin’ In Cali – Craig Chambers ( PR0041, Plus Recordings)

EP (4 tracks.). Out 20th July 2015.



Release Recap – June 26th

The latest instalment of our new release catch up, bringing you up to speed with state51’s great new music.

1. Orphan Boy, From the Provinces.


From Concrete Recordings, Orphan Boy’s album is full of observational lyrics and memorable tunes and comes with an NME stamp of approval (8/10).

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2. A.J. Holmes and The Hackney Empire, Martyn’s Elephant Charm / Ghost Daddy.


Decidedly British.. Imagine if Madness decided to play soukous instead of ska.” (The Guardian). Do you really need more encouragement than that?!

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3. Field Studies, Money of America.


Out on Denizen Recordings from the always great musical city of Nottingham, Field Studies display a flair for dense atmosphere  and claustrophobic, abrasive indie rock.

Download_on_iTunes_Badge_US-UK_110x40_1004 play-on-spotify

4. 5 Years of Gruuv, Vol. 2, Various Artists


To  help mark Gruuv’s 5th anniversary,  they are releasing 6 EPs featuring some exclusive new music from their favourite producers. 

Available from all good digital stores including Spotify, iTunes and Beatport.

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You can listen to all of these on our Release Recap Spotify playlist. Enjoy!



Amplificador – Various Artists (Far Out Recordings)

Amplificador artwork

Label: Far Out Recordings
Cat No: FARO186
Release Date: 13th July 2015
Formats:  CD/ Vinyl/ Digital

Amplificador documents the diverse music blossoming from Brazil’s vivacious musical undergrounds.

This compilation draws together components of Novíssima Música Brasileira (brand new Brazilian music), ranging from afro-grooves to rock, to modern samba and MPB (Brazilian pop music).

The music reaches back across Brazil’s rich musical and cultural traditions. But it also shows the influences of other movements from around the globe, including African music and in particular Afrobeats. Artists such as Abayomy Afrobeat Orchestra from Rio bring with them sounds and rhythms of Candomblé. Zebrabeat Afro-Amazônia Orquestra draw upon traditional instruments such as carimbos and fuse them with Afrobeats to create a unique regional hybrid.

Amplificador is scheduled for release on the 13th July 2015. You can purchase it through Far Out Recordings store.

A 21st Century Music Company.