BlowUpRadio.com, where NJ rock lives, is once again bringing together some of the best local indie musicians for the 11th annual Banding Together: Benefit for The Spondylitis Association of America this fall.
Every year Shoreworld gives props to Lazlo and his benefit for Spondylitis. Lazlo is one of New Jersey’s leading music aficionados. His BlowUpRadio show has been showcasing New Jersey original bands for years, and his love of music and the scene is unmatched by most. I’ve known Lazlo for a couple of decades, and he always comes through for musicians that would otherwise most likely go unnoticed by most media in the tri-state area. Corporate America cares about one thing. That’s money. Without money, most of these stations would not exist. They tailor their playlists with current trends in music as well as sponsors, advertisers and the like.
Lazlo has produced outstanding content on his BlowUpRadio show since as far back as I can remember and his show is always a memorable event. Never one to demand money or ask many favors from others, Lazlo has steadfastly kept the faith since Dec. of 2000, which is when BlowUpRadio got its start. His show is a veritable refuge for people who are tired of mainstream radios refusal to play real New Jersey original artists in favor of the bevy of national mainstays. There are many stations that claim to be Jersey’s rock radio, but aside from the typical mainstream popularity contenders such as Bruce Springsteen, Southside or Bon Jovi hits, they seldom do anything to support the army of New Jersey’s real rock population.
There are thousands of New Jersey artists that deserve radio attention, yet you hardly hear any of them played on mainstream stations. Lazlo’s goal is to represent the real (unsigned or up-and-coming) artists that keep New Jersey at the forefront of musical legend and lore. Yeah sure, if you want to hear the Boss or Skid Row there are many stations out there who will give you just that but Lazlo is a real pioneer when it comes to giving original music a voice in these crazy industry times. Most stations operate on a corporate basis, advertisers, and the bottom line, but Lazlo funds everything himself, and that can become an expensive task given the cost of gear and airspace. Given recent issues with online radio, Lazlo has been fighting the good fight when it comes to keeping his station online and in our ears.
The Copyright Royalty Board had decided to tax internet radio over that of what regular broadcast radio is required to pay. The fees are more than revenue being generated by any internet station today. If the ruling stands, the only stations who will survive will be those large enough to take a financial loss for a few years, a very significant financial loss.
The CRB is either drastically overestimating the amount of money brought in by online stations or wants to eliminate small stations in favor of giant corporations like Clear Channel. Otherwise, their decision makes no sense at all. When asked about the ongoing situation Lazlo says, “I know a good majority of the artists I currently play on both BlowUpRadio.com and Lazlo’s Den are independent artists, that will (sadly) never see a penny from the royalty rate increase, just like they have never seen anything from all the spins their tunes have previously received over the last six and a half years I’ve been doing this through Live 365, which pays money to ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, and SoundExchange.”
“I can’t speak for other webcasters, but for me, it is likely Lazlo’s Den, which is currently an hour long show I record five days a week, will become a podcast I will record five days a week. BlowUpRadio.com, on the other hand, may become a larger version of the jukebox that is already at BlowUpRadio.com, with several hours’ worth of local NJ music on it. Of course, that is dependent on artists signing royalty waivers.”
The issue continues but in the meantime. Lazlo keeps the faith and does what he can to ensure that New Jersey original artists continue to get airplay. In the interim, Lazlo continues his yearly shows for the support of Spondylitis.
This year Banding Together will feature four concerts between Sept. 30th and Oct. 21st at various venues in New Jersey with all money raised going directly to the Spondylitis Association of America to fund research and provide the programs and services the spondylitis community has come to rely on.
Spondylitis is a genetic rheumatoid arthritic condition that causes inflammation and fusion in the vertebrae of the spine. To date, BlowUpRadio.com has raised thousands of dollars for the cause and raised awareness of the genetic disease which the Centers for Disease Control says affects more than 2.7 million adults in the U.S.
“This is a very personal benefit for me as my wife, Naomi, suffers from ankylosing spondylitis (AS),” says Lazlo, the founder of BlowUpRadio.com and the organizer of Banding Together, “I have seen the debilitating effects of this disease and the chronic pain and discomfort it causes. This benefit is the least I can do to help my wife, and over two million others who suffer from AS and its associated diseases.”
Concerts will take place at the following venues:
Dragonfly Music & Coffee Café (Somerville) – Saturday, Sept. 30th
Brighton Bar (Long Branch) – Friday, Oct. 13th
Espresso Joe’s (Keyport) – Saturday, Oct. 14th
The Clash Bar (Clifton) – Saturday, Oct. 21st
Artists scheduled to perform at Banding Together concerts include: Blisstique, Bruce Tunkel, Catherine Wacha, DDA, Deena & Jon (The Cucumbers), Frank Patrouch, Jenny Cat (Jenny & The Felines), Jersey Drive, Joe Schroeck, Jon Caspi & The First Gun, Jonathan Andrew, Josh Bicknell, Joshua Van Ness, Lance Scott Greene, Laree Cisco, Match Party, Miss Ohio, Newfoundman, Paul Rosevear, Peter Prasa, Retroglyphs, Rhonette Smith (Centennials), September’s Ghost, Shotgun Bill, Son Of Dov, The 65’s, The Extras Inc., The May Darlings, Tommy Strazza, and more.
In addition to the live concerts, there will be a new digital compilation, with all money made from the sale of it also going to the Spondylitis Association Of America. The collection includes previously unreleased songs from: A Halo Called Fred, Bruce Tunkel, By Torchlight, Catherine Wacha, Centennials, Colie Brice, Deena, Diego Allessandro, Doctor Danger, Dw Dunphy, Evil Annie, Fuhgawee Hunting Club, Grey Goes Black, Happy Joe Canzano, Hudson Dusters, Jersey Drive, Joe Schroeck, Joker’s Republic, Josh Bicknell, Keith Beck’s Zigman Bird, Late Nights, Lion-Hearted, Matt Collaborate, Mike Ferraro, Newfoundman, Pat Veil, Quality Living, Sean Faust, Shotgun Bill, Son of Dov, Summer Husbands, The Accelerators, The Big Drops, The Subterraneans, The Wag, The Williamsboy
The compilation is available for pre-order (release date is Sept. 30th) at spondy.bandcamp.com. You can also purchase the previous Banding Together collections to help the Spondylitis Association of America via Bandcamp.
“Last year, when we had lost our Internet radio station (which has since been restored), we changed our annual benefit from a webathon to a series of live concerts. As we had our best year ever in raising money for the Spondylitis Association of America, we have decided to continue with this format. However, we do plan to do some special programming on our station in October to help promote the Spondylitis Association of America and the beautiful things they do.”
The Spondylitis Association of America (SAA) is a non-profit organization that was the first and remains the largest resource for people affected by spondylitis. Through their efforts, they help advance education, research, and treatment of ankylosing spondylitis (AS) and related diseases. For more than 30 years SAA has dedicated all its resources to help improve the lives of people coping with spondylitis.
BlowUpRadio.com is WhereNJRockLives. For almost 17 years they have been a website and internet radio station supporting New Jersey’s local original music scene, by playing predominantly unsigned New Jersey bands. For more information on Banding Together go to BlowUpRadio.com.
For more information on the Spondylitis Association Of America go to spondylitis.org.