music interview: Paul Irish, founder of Aurgasm
A couple of weeks ago, I had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Paul Irish, Boston native and founder of www.aurgasm.us. It’s one of my new favorite music blogs that got me into Wallis Bird, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Aurgasm often shares entire tracks of the artists it features, so it’s an awesome opportunity to figure out if you really like the music or not. (I just wish they posted more often!)
Aurgam’s specialty is finding what hasn’t yet reached mainstream popularity. For example, Paul claims to be the first to discover Isreaeli artist Yael Naim that you may know from the Macbook Air commercial. At the time Aurgasm featured Naim, she wasn’t on Israeli radio, MySpace or even Wikipedia. Aurgasm takes full credit for jumpstarting her career. How about that?
The following are his words. Enjoy.
The Birth of Aurgasm
Aurgasm launched August of 2004, but it actually started when I was active in this song sharing community in LiveJournal. That’s how I got my first audience. Then with regular posting, the audience grew.
I try to be different from other blogs that do only indie rock. And while a lot of people like that style, I try to focus on the more eclectic: reggae, folk, funk, jazz, world beats.
I find who I feature in no typical or consistent way. A lot of it is just downloading a LOT of music, and then somewhere around 5% turns out to be good, 1% worth posting. Also, I have a lot of friends all over the world that tip me off to good music that’s taking off in their locales.
Supporting Musicians and ‘Illegal’ Downloads
Back in 2005, I went to this show at the Middle East. RJD2 was headlining and Diplo was opening, but no one knew Diplo at that point. After the show, I went back to the merch table and told him I was really into his track… “Summers Gonna Hurt You”. And then I offered, “Hey, man. I downloaded your music online. I don’t need your CDs, but here. Take 20 dollars.”
Music is social.
Within the past 2 years a really different kind of scene has emerged–as far as dance music goes–specifically electro.
Since dance music has a really short shelf life, everyone is really eager to hear the next new thing. If you go out to a club that’s a weekly spot, you expect to hear brand new tracks every time.
DJs know this, and a few mp3 blogs have become the epicenter for providing new music. Meaning on any given night, all the clubs around the world are playing the exact same tracks because that’s what was highlighted on those blogs. They create an instant sub-culture. Now, from Syndey to Stockholm to San Fran, people are out dancing to the same music. It’s like a globally shared experience.