St. Louis indie act Dropkick the Robot could use your votes in a worldwide songwriting contest that starts tomorrow. This is no charity case, though -- the band has the chops to back up the favor it's asking.
"We've been working for a really long time at songwriting," says Daniel Mehrmann, vocalist and guitarist. "It's nice to get recognized for something that you love to do."
Mehrmann and Dropkick partner Kara Baldus are out to win the electronic category of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, named for one of the Beatles' prominent lyricists. Mehrmann and Baldus wrote their song "Missed Out" in December, and it's been rising steadily through the contest's various levels, recently winning a grand prize ($9,000 worth of gear) for their session.
"It's very exciting for both of us," Mehrmann says. "I don't think either of us has ever won that much for doing what we love."
But beginning Saturday, April 5, "Missed Out" will be pitted against another session's grand prize winner in a worldwide vote on the Lennon site. (The link will not be activated until April 5.) Mehrmann says site visitors may vote once per day until April 29 for the song he says just came together.
"This was actually one of the first tunes that we wrote for the next Dropkick the Robot project," Mehrmann says. "It seem that all of the pieces fell into place -- the lyrical content, the form of the tune, the arrangements, the melody. Everything just fit together so nicely"
If they win the ultimate showdown, Mehrmann and Baldus could get $20,000 worth of prizes, not to mention untold exposure for their art.
Dropkick the Robot is on a roll right now, as Mehrmann's and Baldus' song "As Seen on TV" recently earned semi-finalist status in the International Songwriting Competition, making the top 8% out of 19,000 entries. Moreover, Mehrmann says Dropkick the Robot is preparing a new EP that's targeted for a May release. ("Missed Out," the song up for the John Lennon Songwriting Contest, already is available on iTunes.)
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"I don't think that we fully comprehend or grasp what this could mean for us, so we want to make sure we rise to the occasion and take advantage of all of this goodness that's surrounding us right now," Mehrmann says.
But Mehrmann isn't content to conquer the music scene in only the United States. The musician has been selected to spend one week in Avignon, France, as part of the Mix with the Masters program, where he'll work directly with engineer/producer Jacquire King at Studio LaFabrique.
"It's a huge opportunity to be that close to an A-list engineer," Mehrmann says of King, who has worked with Tom Waits, Kings of Leon, Punch Brothers and Modest Mouse.
"There will be twelve other people there with me, so I hope to establish new relationships and learn as much as I can about mixing," Mehrmann says. "The more I practice, the better I'll get, as with anything in life. I feel like being able to devote myself more and more [to this] can only bring good things."
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