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Category: Music

Inside the uPlaya Music Universe: Sarah Solovay

Listening to her energetic and addictive melodies, Hit Song Science isn’t the only one predicting sweeping success for young singer/songwriter Sarah Solovay.

Solovay fell in love with music at the age of six and in over a decade she has built an impressive resume for herself in the New York music scene. Solovay’s “Gone” won the 2008 New York Songwriters Circle’s “Young Songwriters Award” and is a finalist in the International Songwriters Competition.

Solovay has also been interviewed and featured on and TeenVogue.com and even the Tinder-like adult app Fuck Local.

Solovay’s “Hearts Collide” was featured in a March 2010 episode of a major prime-time drama on the CW, 90210, was highlighted at the end of the episode as a spotlighted song, and was placed on the season’s soundtrack alongside major acts like Owl City, JET and OK Go.

The drama typically averages between 1.5 – 2 million viewers, and its premier in 2008 broke the CW’s record for being the highest-rated scripted debut in the network’s history with 4.7 million viewers.

uPlaya.com:  Tell us about the moment you decided you wanted to become a musician.

Sarah Solovay:  There was never an epiphany moment for me, when I knew I had to be a singer/songwriter. In a sense, it’s something I’ve known all along.

uPlaya.com:  I see that one of your songs, “Hearts Collide”, was placed on the soundtrack for a major drama on the CW, can you tell us a little more about that experience?

Sarah Solovay:  I was so excited when I heard that they wanted to use the song because I have been watching the show from the start. It’s my guilty pleasure show.  When they wanted to use it, they flew me out to L.A. and I got to go to the set and meet some of the actors. It was a total out-of-body experience.  Even just watching the show while my song was on it was crazy. They used it perfectly, and I’m so grateful that they wanted it.

uPlaya.com:  Has your music been licensed for other opportunities?

Sarah Solovay:  I have been! My song is going to be in  an upcoming film, “The Hole” directed by Joe Dante (GremlinsThe ‘burbsTwilight Zone: The Movie).   I also wrote the theme song for the Web TV Show, BFF. My song, “Gone,” is going to be used in an upcoming show starring Rob Corddry (Old SchoolFailure to LaunchThe Heartbreak KidW.Hot Tub Time Machine). Conde Nast’s Teen Vogue used “All She Could Be” for photo shoot of Dakota Fanning, which was really cool too … It was thrilling … since I’m a big fan of her work. I’m always looking for ways to put my music out there into the world, so things like the teen.com and teenvogue.com pieces are magic to me.

uPlaya.com:  Why did you decide to use uPlaya.com?

Sarah Solovay:  I read about uPlaya from someone’s blog and loved the idea of uploading my songs and finding out how uPlaya’s Hit Song Science analysis would rate them.  I think it’s a unique and cool concept to be able to have scientific analysis to back up the idea of how a hit song might sound.  I also love to check out the contests that are offered!  So glad that I found you guys 

uPlaya.com:  What can we expect in the future?

Sarah Solovay:  In the future, you can expect lots of new music from me. I plan on putting out a full-length album sometime in the next year or two, and I really want to go on tour to support that album. I have lots of plans and lots of dreams, and I won’t stop until I make them happen. It’s that or death.

uPlaya.com:  Anything else you would like to share with fans?

Sarah Solovay:  The only other thing I’d like to share with the fans is my thanks.  I am so truly grateful for anybody who supports me in any way.  The love and support I get from the people who listen to my music make my day/week/month/world/etc.

How to Crowd-Fund Your Music Project – How It Works

Stats show crowd-funding site Kickstarter added $13+ million to the music economy in the past two years. Music was one of the most funded categories, second only to film.

uPlaya recently partnered with Microgiving, a crowd-funding tool that’s now directly on your uPlaya Press Kit. Microgiving goes a step further than most other crowd-funding tools by encouraging project owners to donate a portion of their gains to a charity of their choice.

This means you not only get the perfect opportunity to give back, but your fans will also feel good about the fact that they are donating to your band and an important cause the band supports.

We understand a crowd-funding project can be intimidating, so we’d like to help with a series of how-to posts on the uPlaya Blog.

In our first installment, we provide a “musician’s version” of an infographic Zippycart created on how to use Kickstarter to crowd-fund a project.

Step 1: Come up with an idea.

Develop a very specific idea of what you would like to raise money for. Is it a new album? To fund a music tour through the Southeast? Even in the initial stages, it’s important to be as detailed as

Step 2: Create a project page.

There are a lot of useful and effective crowd-funding tools out there, but we recommend uPlaya artists create an account with Microgiving. This way you can use your uPlaya Press Kit, which already showcases positive information about your music, to help you raise money.

Step 3: Set goals.

Determine the amount you would like to raise and also give yourself a deadline to reach those goals. We recommend a lot of research and planning to ensure your goals are realistic. You also need to hold yourself accountable to your donors and be able to tell them precisely how you intend to spend the money.

Step 4: Set Rewards.

It’s important to show appreciation to the donors and fans who believe in you. Come up with a rewards system that will not only excite your fans, but also be something you can live up to. Sample prizes include backstage passes and autographed t-shirts. Make sure the prize matches the donation amount.

Step 5 & 6: Showcase your project.

Put yourself out there and promote your cause. Your uPlaya Press Kit makes this easy – you can display a link to your Microgiving project so fans can find it after seeing your promotional material. Email your uPlaya through e-blasts to fans, friends and family and to potential investors and music professionals who you think should see your work.  Do what you can to encourage other donors on Microgiving to check out your project (studies show that more than 10% of donors will give to multiple projects).

Step 7: Keep investors updated.

Throughout the building of the project, you must send updates on your progress. This lets the donors feel like they are involved and also gives you an opportunity to engage with them and keep them excited.

Songwriters – can you sight-read?

Can you actually read and write the notes of your songs?

Some of the most successful composers never could – and many today still can’t read a note of music.

So, is there a real disadvantage in not being able to read and write music?

The answer is yes. Let me say straight away, not being able to sight-read will not disqualify you from being a successful songwriter – but it will present you with a handicap over those who can.

Firstly, writing music gives you an immediate advantage in being able to create a top-line or lead sheet which you can use quickly to register the copyright in your song.

Secondly, writing out the music will help you in ways you cannot imagine especially in the layout of your song – rather like reading a road map – fields, signs timing, and direction fall into place in a more convenient way.

Yes, I know you can buy software that will write out the music for you using midi on a keyboard or guitar, but think of the convenience of being able to write out a piece of music straight to the manuscript as soon as an original melody runs through your head.

At any moment a brilliant tune may come to you – and minutes later it may be lost forever.

Interestingly, understanding how to read music is not difficult at all – in fact, it’s as simple as ABC.

If you can read the alphabet, you can read music. Notes appear on five horizontal lines called a “stave” or “staff” Each note falls directly on one of the lines, or in the spaces. Starting with the simplest of keys – C major, the next note above C is D then E-F-G-A-B-C.  You’re simply following the alphabet.

Once you get to “G” your next note above is “A” and so on. You see, in music the letters run from A to G only, that’s it.

The only other notes are the “in betweens” sharps or flats (b) which mostly appear in keys other than C major.   Sounds easy? It is. Familiarize yourself with all the notes and the keys and you’ll be reading music in no time.

Those who regularly read and write often begin to see amazing possibilities in other areas of music – such as arranging, harmony, chord structure, counterpoint, and even orchestration. You see, if you have creative ability, to begin with, chances are these are areas you were meant to move into. Once you start your mind working the possibilities in creative music are endless.

Hit Potential Technology

It’s your time, uPlaya independent artists, musicians and songwriters.

Hit Song Science™ and the Music Universe™ power the uPlaya Artist Revolution.

“Online services have helped address the availability problem for music, but consumers and artists are still frustrated by a lack of visibility to easily connect great artists with potential fans,” “Music Intelligence Solutions™ Music Universe™ and Hit Song Science™ can solve the visibility problem better than any other technology that I have seen.” Chuck D, co-founder of Public Enemy, legendary artist, author and Internet entrepreneur.

Do you dream of a world without boundaries, where you can place your work before a huge audience, with no limits and no interference?

Hit Song Science™ provides immediate feedback on your song’s potential for commercial success and instant legitimization in the market for high-scoring music.

Do you want help choosing the best channels and markets for your music and which of your songs have the best chance for success?

The Music Universe™ helps you understand the hit potential of your songs within different markets and niches, and includes targeted promotional features to help your music gain visibility with audiences who already like your sound.

Our rating system gives you immediate feedback on the quality of your music, its competitive edge in the music industry, and its reception among professionals and music lovers.

For example, if your song receives a Gold or Platinum Audionaut Award (Auddy™), then the underlying musical patterns are similar to songs that have been hits in the past.

The Music Universe™ includes many languages and all genres from around the world. Ultimately, The Music Universe™ will analyze and catalog all music ever created and digitized.

Hit Song Science™ compares the sonic characteristics of your tracks against all the songs in the Music Universe™.

In the Music Universe™, hit songs tend to “cluster” (in terms of similarity), and the likely commercial success of new music is judged by its proximity to these constellations.

Music Intelligence Solutions’ patented algorithms analyze the fundamental characteristics of all music, such as brightness and tempo, and measures how they change over time. Often, these characteristics are perceived unconsciously by the listener, and the correct mix of parameters is more important than any individual parameter by itself.

Detecting Hit Potential and Music Trends

Artists use the Hit Song Science™ technology to compare their unreleased songs against hits of the past and present, allowing them to see how well their music fits into the current market as well as to identify potential hits.

The technology also spots new trends and highlights how new songs fit in with these new trends. So a song containing mathematical patterns that are becoming more prevalent in new trends is detected as having high hit potential.

analyzes an album or song and provides multiple components of feedback: song ratings to assess hit potential, song ratings to assess “staying power” and “new trends potential”, affinity values vis-a-vis other artists, and information regarding album coherence.