by Daniel Hill
We here at RFT Music work hard to keep our concert calendars current and provide as comprehensive a list as possible of shows that are happening around town. At the moment we get our information from an amalgamation of sources -- shows submitted online, concert listings on venue's websites, e-mails from promoters and publicists and sometimes just plain old ear-to-the-street flyer-hunting. We pride ourselves on the job that we do, but we are always striving to top ourselves and to be as thorough as possible. Hence, the purpose of this blog post.
Bands, venues, promoters, publicists, avid fans and the like: read below to find out how to best make us aware of your shows, to see just what we do with these show listings, and to learn how to have your events featured online and in print in the most prominent way possible.
First off, allow me to introduce myself: My name is Daniel Hill and as of a month or so ago I am the new Clubs Editor around these parts. I've been actively involved in the local scene for over a decade and am unendingly passionate about St. Louis music, so I am excited and honored to be able to serve in this way. In short, my job here is to input all of the shows that come to our attention into our online calendar, and to work with music editor Kiernan Maletsky to pick out and give extra attention to the ones that are of particular interest to music fans in St. Louis. My e-mail address is flooded with literally hundreds of concert announcements every week and I do my best to try to give each of them the treatment they deserve. Now, call me a glutton for punishment, but I am here to ask you for more.
The main manner by which shows are submitted is through this form (go ahead and click that link and follow along; it opens in a new window). It has all the necessary fields in place for me to get the show online and in print: venue, date, time, price, name of the act, etc. One thing important to note when using this form is the "Event Type" field -- remember to click the "music" button or else it will not end up in my e-mail. This method is the easiest way to get your shows to our attention.
Alternatively, you can e-mail your events to me directly. This method might be ideal as a time-saver for promoters or venues that are submitting multiple shows at once -- for example an entire month's concert calendar. If you choose to use this method, please be sure to include the following for each event: Name of the artist(s), venue, date of event, showtime, price, and an appropriate genre tag (examples: rock, blues, punk, indie, etc.). With all of this info, it should be no problem for us to get your events the attention they warrant. My e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org and I check it constantly.
Every show submitted will be entered into our online concert calendar. The easiest way to find said calendar is by moving the mouse over the "Music" tab in the navigation bar at the top of this page, and selecting it from the drop-down list that appears. Print listings are located towards the back of the paper, between the music section and Savage Love. With enough advance notice (at least a couple weeks, but the further out the better) there are a few options through which above-average shows can receive above-average treatment. Every week in the print edition we feature five "Critic's Picks" -- blurbs recommending shows for that issues's week. These are written and chosen by RFT Music staff from the shows that are submitted to us. In addition, every Monday on the blogs we do a post called "Out Every Night" which recommends shows for every night of the week -- click to see all of the past posts here to get a sense of what that is. Every Wednesday we do another blog post entitled "This Just In" which lists all of the newly announced shows we have received within that post's week -- click here for a past example of what that post looks like. Finally, every Friday we blog a "Weekend Best Bets" post for the weekend warriors, which lists ten recommended shows for the end of the week. Check here to see past examples of what those posts look like.
Typically when choosing the shows that populate the above posts we emphasize national acts that are of interest to St. Louis music lovers and local acts that write and record their own music, but this is by no means a hard-and-fast rule. When submitting shows, PLEASE feel encouraged to include an explanation of why your event should be of particular interest (perhaps in the "event description" field of the event submission form, or anywhere in an e-mail) and know that we will be reading that and taking your thoughts into consideration. Also, again, be aware that the more advance notice is given, the more we can do with an event.
Again, my name is Daniel Hill, and I thank you for allowing / helping me to serve St. Louis music in this fashion. If you have any questions or comments feel free to e-mail me (I'll try to get back to you as soon as I can, but please remember the aforementioned flood of e-mails I see regularly) or just post in the comments section below. Thanks!