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[ARTIST ADVICE] Getting Featured On A Music Blog: Tips For Success

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Years ago, all you needed was a good magazine review and your album would sell like hotcakes. In fact, the review didn’t even really need to be good; the only thing that was important was the size of the magazine’s circulation. However, times have changed, and most people don’t even see magazine reviews anymore. All the information they need is on the Internet, which means that music blogs are becoming increasingly more popular. Stereogum and Pitchfork are two of the current big ones, and they can help a new artist get a following fairly quickly. It isn’t always easy to get featured on one of the big blogs, though, but smaller blogs can be instrumental to a beginner’s success.

How do you connect with a blogger? The truth is, you have to go about the process in the right way if you want to be a success. The following five tips are crucial in helping you get the attention of a blogger.

1. Study The Blog: Before you do anything else, you need to look through a blog you are interested in to learn as much about it as possible. When you contact the blogger, you need to be familiar with the site and showcase that you have that knowledge.

2. Comment: As you are looking through the blog, comment on posts that you find interesting. Don’t say anything about the fact that you are a musician yet; you simply want to provide interesting commentary so that your name looks familiar to the blogger.

3. Reach Out: After you spend time looking through the site and commenting, and you think the blogger has had time to recognize your name, you can contact him or her and talk a little about yourself. The blogger should be more willing to listen to you if he has seen you making valuable contributions on his site.

4. Ask A Question: Bloggers get a lot of emails, and they simply don’t have time to make personal contact with everyone. Increase your chances by asking the blogger a question about your music. This may inspire him to get back in touch with you, particularly if he knows you are a regular on his site. You can follow up as well, if you don’t hear anything at first.

5. Give Information: Don’t try to “sell” the blogger on your work. Just talk about what you are doing and why you are doing it. Hopefully this advice helps you. It comes from a blogger that often hears from others in the industry, so it is valuable information.

6. Engage in Social Media: If you’re starting a music blog, then sort out your social media. Set up some accounts, add some followers and some likes to them and then start placing your content on them regularly at the right times and watch as they grow.

These tips will help you create and grow a good music blog that will give you and your tastes exposure.

[WRITTEN BY GUEST AUTHOR]

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Upcoming Event: 12/10 The Void Debuts “Folie” Every Thursday At Libertine in Miami

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For a year and a half, The Void has been responsible for producing stimulating and interactive music & art events in the city of Miami. Building a guest list of over 1,500 attendees, The Void became a consistent topic of interest for artists, creators, tastemakers, spectators, partygoers, and more.

With the New Year approaching, they are excited to announce the commencement of their new weekly party FOLIE. Guests can enjoy tasty cocktails, versatile tunes, and a fun, sexy environment where you can let loose! Dancing is encouraged, as The Void creates environments for people to freely express.

Join them this Thursday, December 10th, 2015 at Libertine for the kickoff of FOLIE, Miami’s new favorite Hip Hop Party!

DJ Sets by: Sean Bang, Niko Javan, Fvego Beatz, Pam Jones, & Slow Dope.

RSVP at Folie.Splashthat.com

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COSPLAY: ANIMATE MIAMI (Oct 23 – 25) at The Miami Airport Convention Center

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ANIMATE MIAMI is NEXT WEEKEND!!!! Join them on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday October 23, 24, and 25 at The Miami Airport Convention Center for the BIGGEST COSPLAY, ANIME, & ANIMATION event of the fall! Go to www.animatemiami.com for all the show info and get your tickets online directly at https://register.growtix.com/e/animate_miami_2015.

Animate! Miami is a full weekend celebration featuring some of the animation and anime industries’ biggest names, cosplayers, artists, comedians, entertainers, and much, much more! There will be hundreds of events, such as celebrity Q&A’s, costume contests, photo shoots, video games, comedy shows, screenings, and autograph sessions.

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Some of the highlights for Animate! Miami 2015 include:


* Steven Universe cast members! Zach Callison (Steven Universe), and Grace Rolek (Connie).

* Sailor Moon cast members! Lauren Landa (Sailor Neptune), Erica Mendez (Sailor Uranus, Reika), Patrick Seitz (Kunzite, Malachite), Matt Mercer (Prince Demande, Prince Diamond).

* The stars of your favorite Anime! Cast members from Madoka Magica, FREE! Eternal Summer, Kill La Kill, Sword Art Online cast members, Attack on Titan, and more!

* Linda Larkin, the voice of Princess Jasmine in Disney’s Aladdin animated films, tv series, and video games.

* Christopher Daniel Barnes, the voice of Prince Eric in The Little Mermaid and Kingdom Hearts II, Spider-Man and Peter Parker in the Spider-Man Animated Series, and Prince Charming in Cinderella II & III.

* Olivia Olson, the voice of Marceline in Adventure Time, and Vanessa in Phineas and Ferb.

* Margaret Kerry, the original Tinkerbell and the Red-Headed Mermaid in Walt Disney’s 1953 animated feature Peter Pan.

* Dana Snyder, star of Aqua Teen Hunger Force (Master Shake), Squidbillies (Granny), The Venture Bros. (The Alchemist), Chowder (Gazpacho), Batman Unlimited (The Penguin), and The Thundermans (Dr. Colosso).

* Every Witch Way cast members! Jason Drucker (Tommy Miller), Jackie Frazey (Melanie Miller), Zoey Burger (Gigi Rueda), and Lisa Corrao (Ramona).

* Multiple costume and cosplay events each day of the show, with thousands of dollars in cash and prizes on the line!

* Over 150,000 square feet of convention space featuring 300 booths and tables with vendors, celebrity guests, artists, filmmakers, and exhibits. 3 stages of entertainment, over 10,000 square feet of video games, plus a dozen rooms for panels, tabletop gaming and screenings.


Go to http://www.animatemiami.com/p/program.html for a sneak peak at the complete Animate Miami program guide.

Go to https://register.growtix.com/schedule/animate_miami_2015 to check out the entire show schedule.

A limited amount of rooms are still available at the host hotels. Go to http://www.delmayandpartners.com/ANIMIA15.html and reserve your rooms before they sell out!

DON’T MISS THE DRUNK ON DISNEY V.I.P SPOOKTACULAR – HOSTED BY DANA SNYDER! (21+) tickets are available at https://register.growtix.com/e/animate_miami_2015. Three hours that will change your life FOREVER! DANA SNYDER’S VIP DRUNK ON DISNEY SPOOKTACULAR – is intended for discerning adults, 21-and-over, ONLY! Tickets are $60 and extremely limited! Hosted in a secret location on SATURDAY EVENING at 10:45pm.

Planning to attend Animate! Miami? RSVP at https://www.facebook.com/events/949154721776348/

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Culture Shock: Miami’s Indie Scene Looses Venue Support

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For the last two years Miami’s Indie Scene has taken a toll on where or when a local hip-hop showcase will happen. One of the biggest concert venues GRAND CENTRAL in downtown Miami has announced they’ll be closing their doors on September 26. And before a mass amount of supportive venues have shut down as well: The Stage Miami, LMNT, Club Eve, The Nest, The Goose Lounge, and the list goes on and on. We may call this a local entertainment recession right now.
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Here’s a bit more information on me and my experience with Miami’s Indie Scene. I’ve coordinated events in Miami and West Palm Beach areas since 2011-2014. With my accounted history I’ve coordinated about 50+ shows that were artist showcases, networking events, artist listening events, beat competitions, open mics, anniversary parties, The Walking Dead Viewing Party called iScream Sundays, and even a yearly event called Blogfest. I would say I was a lucky promoter guaranteeing venues at no cost because of the quality of the show I was providing. The bar will make their money off drinks and I’ll cover the events expenses with what I made off the door. As the years passed the harder it was to get a show booked, venues I previously worked with wanted to start charging me $1,500 to book a show on a Wednesday night, they would never give me weekends considering my crowds supported me more on the weekends. Also my budget wouldn’t allow me to cover these expenses which made it even harder to book shows.

IMG_0061For the last two months I’ve partnered up with PropsAndBonds who’ve coordinate monthly events within the Miami Scene and also coordinating Vice City Cypher’s Saturday Mic Live at Catalyst. From January-August I was living in California, I came to visit and was hoping to coordinate my sites 5 Year Anniversary show. I asked for their help and we’ve came up short. Every venue PropsAndBonds met with said they would love too but can’t since they’re going to be closing down due to higher rent costs within the Wynwood community. Which startles me because this is where the new Miami reached out to and helped grow from what it was. No one would have set foot in this area 10 years ago but now it’s the talk of the town. But will it still be considering now venues are no longer interested in working with the hip-hop community. Even though it’s been difficult we’re still working hard to make this event happen and give an amazing show with the best hip-hop artist we know.

The harder it is for a promoter to book shows will make it even harder for an upcoming artist to get some time on stage or be able to present a live show in-front of a real audience. As you see as artist you need to come up with creative ways to get your performance out there. There’s an artist who I know that goes out of his way and performs live on the street with a mic connected to a speaker. He’s name is Stide Prince and he calls these pop-up performances The FUCK YOUR VENUE TOUR. But there are issues with doing these type of shows you need a permit from the City of Miami. Or they will shut you down.

A video posted by Aristide Junior (@stideprince) on


I feel that we all need to come together in working to getting more shows coordinated and get more possibilities for the independent artists to perfect their craft. If you have any ideas or know any venues that will be interested in working with me contact me via Twitter at NikkiSiixx.

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POLL: Who Sampled It Better? Kingdom Hearts Utada Hikaru – Sanctuary

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Anything can inspire a beat, you just need the right sample. Samples can be quotes from a movie, soundtracks to video games and audio of passed interviews. Its common to have a few people inspire by the same thing. I decided to create a Poll to who sampled it better. This session we’ll concentrate on Kingdom Hearts II Intro with Utada Hikaru Sanctuary. Here’s how the intro looks and sounds like:

Alright, so you have the feel for Utada Hikaru Sanctuary. I’m a huge fan of the Kingdom Hearts Series and I love this song truly. What’s even better, I was able to find four artist who used this sample one way or another in their track. I was pretty impressed by the different versions of this track. Here are your options of Who Sampled It Better?

JAYOMEGA – SANCTUARY PART II – PRODUCED BY SYER


Screen Shot 2015-07-25 at 7.23.06 PM Jayomega was inspired by the original song when he first heard it on the opening credits of “Kingdom Hearts 2”, a popular Disney inspired RPG that released for Playstation 2 in 2005. Jayomega originally released “Sanctuary” on his mixtape “Ready Set Go 2: Going Going Gone“, but could never fully promote it as it violated some copyright laws. Jayomega sent me the track and advised him he should really get to remaking that beat to generate the song. But instead of using the same lyrics, he went in. Jayomega’s flow meets the pace to Syer amazing production skills.

BLIZZI BOI – SANCTUARY || PRODUCED BY: UNKNOWN


Screen Shot 2015-07-24 at 8.17.31 PMBlizzi Boi adds to his Oceanic Music collection his track Sanctuary. This beat was sent to Blizzi Boi from a female vocalist. She wanted him to write the song and set the tone. Being a huge fan of the Kingdom Hearts series, he couldn’t turn it down. Oceanic Music sets a smooth fantasy almost trap r&b type of love song. Inspired by ocean life, R&B music and fantasy. Blizzi liked it so much he actually ended up completing the song. One thing I really like was how he started the track.. “I feel alive, when I’m with you! Just want to be inside your sanctuary”. Its pretty dope he flipped Utada’s line and made it his own.

XV – WHEN WE’RE DONE || PRODUCED BY: SEVEN


XVEven though this track was created over 4 years ago, XV brings us his version of Sanctuary. I noticed there wasn’t any reference to Kingdom Hearts, but there is some type of reference I believe in his hook. See for yourself: “Not everybody lives, but everybody dies. So while a nigga here, I’m shooting for the sky. Landing on the moon, walking on the sun. Taking over the game, give it back when we done“. It’s more of an inspirational and motivational track. Titled WHEN WE’RE DONE, this track was the first leak off his Zero Heroes EP. Produced By Seven, I really like how that song inspired him to make this beat.

FRENCH MONTANA – SANCTUARY || PRODUCED BY: BLACK METAPHOR


french montana - mac and cheese 3We even have a mainstream artist using this sample. French Montana SANCTUARY off of his mixtape MAC & CHEESE 3. I find it doubt that Frech Montana mentions this in his track: “You know what I mean? Its sanctuary baby. You know they say it’s the game of life and you don’t get to play it twice.” I feel this can be a reference to the Kingdom Hearts 2 since he mention a game and playing it twice. Who didn’t play that game twice. Black Metaphor is the producer on the beat. I like how he was able to maintain the sample at the beginning of the track, which really set the overall tone. Thought it was cool how melodic French became with the hook and bridges. French emphasizes the growth of his network, and the capabilities to splurge it, living that good life.

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So here comes your job! Please pick one of your favorite versions of Utada Hikaru’s Sanctuary off of one of the biggest games in video game history Kingdom Hearts II. You need to decided from Jayomega, Blizzi Boi, XV, and Frech Montana. In 3 weeks I’ll announce who was your favorite!

Who Sampled It Best?
Jayomega – Sanctuary Part II
Blizzi Boi – Sanctuary
XV – When We’re Done
French Montana – Sanctuary

Poll Maker

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Upcoming Event: 01.29 – Vice City Cypher Presents The Flight Club

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Last year VCC returned with a brand new cast and renewed sense of ambition as we took off into the skies in search of good vibes and dope music. In 2015 we’re continuing our flight plan to the top as we bring you nothing but the best in shows and independent artists. So come rock with us this month and see just how much better life is when you’re a part of The Flight Club!

Thursday January 29th 2015
@ Railroad Blues
28 NE 14th Street, Miami, FL 33132
Doors Open 9:30PM
Ladies 18+ | Guys 21+
Ladies FREE before 11PM
Guys $5 before 11PM

PERFORMANCES BY:
Silenthand
Divine Don Julio
Troy B
Nell B
Seanetta
Fraser In The Flesh

MUSIC BY:
Siberian Space Bar
DeeJay Twin

Tix Available at: BUY HERE

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Catch Up With The Artist Series: Rob Regis at NETWERK

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Rob Regis Icon CUWTASNikkiSiixx took the time and caught up with Rob Regis at her NETWERK Event back in August 2014 at Propaganda Lake Worth, FL. Stay tuned for upcoming new music, a collaboration project, and more dope artwork by Faded Art Lordxx.

Stay Connected with Rob Regis INSTAGRAMTWITTERFACEBOOK SOUNDCLOUD

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Upcoming Event: 12/27 – Most Known Unknownz Indy Hip-Hop Showcase at Villa Lounge

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Saturday December 27th,
MiamiFactory and Stamped N Da Streetz DJs
are pleased to announce #TheMostKnownUnknownz indie showcase
at The Villa Lounge in Miami Gardens | 19501 NW 2nd Ave Miami, FL 33169
Indy Hip-Hop Showcase Featuring performances from some of Miami’s next rising stars.
Music by @iamslick305 of the @StampedNDaStreetzDJs.
FREE Food along with drink/bottle specials all night and more!
Doors OPEN 8pm – 11pm
EST LIMITED ADVANCED TICKETS AVAILABLE : CLICK HERE

NIKKIJOMAZING: S1 EP9 with iLLustrious

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NikkiSiixx x JojosBlock x Womazing brings you NIKKIJOMAZING a weekly hip-hop show brought to you by these four strong women in the hip-hop community. We bring you an exclusive interview artists and producer from iLLustrious members MeRCy, Bishop, Kojazz, Solidified. And mentioned other members YoAmanduh and SeeFrancis. We discussed previous projects/upcoming project, flashback to DXC 2 years ago, and the bond between the members.Tune In every Monday 4PM Eastern. Don’t forget to subscribe and follow us on twitter @NikkiJoMazing.

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BLOGFEST 2013 – November 30th at WakeUpStar Studio

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NikkiSiixx.com Presents BLOGFEST 2013

A DAY Event that is meant for Bloggers, Musicians, Producers, DJs, Clothing Lines, and Music Lovers . Come prepared and be ready to network with CDs and Business Cards!

MUSIC BY DJ TR3S
Hosted By: NikkiSiixx & Special Guests

W* Studio
120 NW 25th Street Suite 301
Miami, FL

18^
$10 Door Cover
Doors Open at 2PM
Show Starts 3PM-8PM

Performances:
Silent Hand ENT
Ebanga The Songstress
Chyna J
Art Morera
Meyday Hansen
King Docious
Doobz Da Kidsta

Come Meet With Your Favorites!!!
Sponsors:
NikkiSiixx.com
Womazing.com
JojosBlock.com
BEZ Stylz
HypeGirls.com
Mellystarz.com
Valholla Entertainment
SimplyAnnick.net

Any questions or concerns please feel free to contact NikkiSiixx.

NikkiSiixx Do’s and Dont’s: How To Promote Your Music Through Social Media Outlets

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Social Media has taken the internet by storm, it’s not the same as 10 years ago. Social Media outlets are websites that offer ways to interact with others, they might be friends or family and possibly with people you’ve never met.. The most popular out of these social outlets are Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIN, and the list goes on and on. I would like to go over the proper way to use Twitter and Facebook since these are the media outlets I use the most. I consider these more like guidelines.

TWITTER:

DO:
[x] When promoting your music via Twitter do it best on your timeline. This will reach out to you’re followers, if they like what they see they’ll click the link because they are interested.

[x] When someone asks for more links to your music, send it through a DM. (DM – Direct Message) You’re followers don’t need to see you blasting your own music to others.

[x] HASTAG # RELEVANT TOPICS! Obviously genre, location of artist, and key words related to your song or content.

[x] Overload you’re timeline with content. This will bring you people who are interested.

DON’T:
[x] Spam everyone with a link to your track saying LIKE AND SHARE — First off… how can you LIKE a tweet? You’re in the wrong outlet. Especially when you spam everyone with the same tweet it gets ridiculous. When we’re using Twitter we don’t listen when we receive these type of tweets.

[x] DON’T DM with links to your music, especially when the person didn’t inquire to hear your music in the first place. This is when you can actually lose a potential fan or get reported as SPAM.

[x] DON’T EVER ALTER tweets to give you the benefit of the doubt.

[x] Say if you’re waiting on a blogger/brand to get back to you on a submission or an inquiry. Don’t tweet them publicly, this will put them on the spot on why they haven’t gotten back to you. You must understand by doing this, this will reduce you’re chances with them even working with you. Best way is either through a DM or an email. I find email is more private and you’ll have more space to talk about the situation.

FACEBOOK:

DO:
[x] Best way to promote your music via Facebook is to have a Artist Fan Page. This way any personal stuff doesn’t get shown to your fans.

[x] Promote – New Music x Projects x Collaborations x Photos x Music Video x Event Recaps of your performance x Any upcoming shows you have.

[x] Follow Facebook Guidelines! Such as posting photos of drugs you’re using or any type of nudity. Facebook does not play when it comes to these offenses. They’ve been reports of police departments going through pages and finding people posting them using illegal drugs. You just gave yourself away. There’s no need to promote it!

DON’T:
[x] Copy and paste the same promotion to everyone that’s a friend of yours. Either on a wall post or through a message. I find this to be inconsistent. When sometimes everyone is a friend of a friend and see you left them the same comment. Where’s the exclusivity? Why should I listen? Do I have time to listen? All these questions pop off when people get these notifications.

[x] You’re content on other people’s walls. Who gives you the right? I know it may seem like a great idea at first. But what if the person doesn’t like you pushing your music on their wall or doesn’t like your music at all. You wouldn’t like another artists to do the same on your page.

[x] Tag People on photos of your cover art. Unless they had something to do with it. If they made the cover art, produced the track, was featured on it. These should be the reasons why you’re being tagged in the first place. When I see images I’m tagged in that I have nothing to do with I just remove my tag.

I hope you were able to use some of my pointers in properly promoting you’re content via social media outlets. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to contact me via Twitter @NikkiSiixx

Nothing But The Truth: Meet The Press Edition by Fawn•Nicole

The worlds of blogging and talent discovery have certainly changed with the boom of social media, thus affecting the music industry as we know it. But, rather than complain about the current state of affairs, I’m here to offer some sound advice. It’s time to meet the press. I am Fawn•Nicole, I write for NikkiSiixx.com and I am an artist manager. Currently, I manage three artists, and everything I am about to write about are things that I have already done and they have worked.

Now, we’ve seen a few articles on how to “properly” reach out to online media for press coverage, and they’re jam packed with the political jargon to toot the horn of the blogger. I am writing this article for the artists, and this one is catered to hip-hop artists because helpful articles seldom cater to us. There are a few things that absolutely have to happen when you decide your music is ready to be shared with anyone that isn’t a friend or relative.

High Quality Mix/Mastering: This is simply non-negotiable. You are sending your music to people who listen to music all the time! These people have the potential to share your music with their readers, and your ultimate goal is to gain a fan from what they listen to. Regardless of whether or not the music is good, sound quality is important. The best way to look at it is this, the second you decide to share your music with the world, you’re an aspiring music professional. Your music needs to sound as such.

Be Brief: Trust me, when you’re reaching out for the first time you’ll want to include as much information as possible. It’s only natural. You’re trying to intrigue the blogger with interest so they’ll actually press play then decide to post YOUR music. I learned the hard way. While I learned to be creative within a few paragraphs, once I narrowed down the information to a few sentences, things started to look up. Simply put, you’re one out of a few hundred, if not thousands of aspiring artists bombarding these inboxes on a regular basis. They want to know who you are, where you’re from and what your music is all about. It really is that simple. If the music is dope, they will know when they hear it.

Keep In Mind, This Is A PROFESSIONAL COMMUNICATION: Yes, this is a business transaction. As much as folks wants to abandon this principle (one reason why the genre is a mess), this is a requirement!  Use proper grammar. Spellcheck, I mean seriously… most of our machines do this for us today, do it! While slang isn’t banned, do not be profane.

In an attempt to let this sink in, and to answer any questions up to this point, I’ll save the rest for a part two to be published soon.

Tweet me, @FawnNicole with your questions, and use the #NothingButTheTruth hashtag.

Upcoming Event: 09.15.12 Bars And Beats Open Mic – Producer/Artist Showcase at The Lounge Room

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BARS AND BEATS
Open Mic x Producer/Artist Showcase

09.15.2012
DOORS OPEN AT 10PM

The Lounge Room at Club Eve
1306 N Miami Avenue

COVER:
18-20 $10
21^ $5

OPEN MIC IS FROM 10-11:30
PRODUCER/ARTIST SHOWCASE 11:30-2:300

PRODUCERS:
KILLAH TRAKZ
MINDLABS
SCAMZ ON DA BEAT
BONUS

PERFORMING LIVE!
TAY-G
RON SLYDA

SPONSORS:
NIKKISIIXX.COM
FLSP

** [PRODUCERS] **
IF YOUR INTERESTED IN FOR OCTOBERS BEAT BATTLE PLEASE SEND ME AN EMAIL TO SIIXXNIKKI@GMAIL.COM WITH YOUR BIO- SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS (TWITTER/FACEBOOK) – BEATS

IF YOUR CHOSEN THERE’S A $20 ENTRY FREE WHEN ACCEPTED!