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RAS General FAQ

FAQ Index
1. What exactly is Request-A-Song.com? A web site? A service? A band? A label?
2.How long have you been doing this?
3.Who writes, performs, and produces all these songs?
4.How do you decide which requests to use for songs?
5.Why do your songs suck?
6.Are you gay? Do you have herpes? Are you Jewish? Do you smoke
pot and collect guns? Are you really captain of the gravy train?
7.Will you write some music especially for our site, film, project, etc.?
8.How come all the songs are not requests?
9.What's with the tractor picture on the front page?
10.Can other artists contribute to Request-A-Song.com?
Frequently Asked Questions Printer  Printable Version
1. What exactly is Request-A-Song.com? A web site? A service? A band? A label?

     The best answer to this question is all of the above, although to varying degrees. We are first and foremost a musical act, going under the name "Request-A-Song.com," (perhaps the world's first and only "dot-com band," for better or for worse) comprised of two artists, Benj and Jeremy Edwards. Second, as we occasionally do commissions (songs for pay) that kinda makes us a service too. But, as stated many times previously throughout the site, the whole purpose and goal of RAS is not to fulfill every single request, but to provide entertainment to a larger listening audience through our art. That means when we actually do use a request, we try to make the song appealing to everyone, not just the person who requested it. Songs specifically about one's partner, babies, aunts, friends, surgeries, and relatives are highly unlikely to get chosen, because they would likely only mean something to the person requesting it.

We publish, control, and distribute our own material, so that makes us more like our own label. You could almost say that we're a "band-business" -- a self-contained musical group that is also concerned with all aspects of its management, publicity, and business affairs.

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2. How long have you been doing this?

     Although RAS has been in the works since mid-2000, Request-A-Song.com officially went live on October 1st, 2002 at approximately 2 AM.

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3. Who writes, performs, and produces all these songs?

     We do! Despite going under the group name of "Request-A-Song.com," at the moment, we (Benj Edwards and Jeremy Edwards) usually work completely separately on our songs. Each of us writes his own song, then performs or sequences all of the instruments on it (with a few exceptions noted below), sings it, mixes, produces, and masters it, then submits it to the site. There are a number of Benj's recordings which feature Jeremy on guitar, and some of Jeremy's that have Benj on backing vocals. As of this writing (Sep 2004), only a few songs have actually been co-written by the brothers Edwards. However, we plan on collaborating more in the future in the songwriting department.

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4. How do you decide which requests to use for songs?

     For questions about requests, songwriting, and the requesting process, please see the Request FAQ.

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5. Why do your songs suck?

     We all have our own unique tastes in music, so if RAS isn't your thing, we hope you'll look elsewhere for your musical entertainment. If you don't enjoy our stuff, that's ok; nobody (that we know of...) is forcing you to listen to it. One great thing about music in general is that each artist can bring his or her own unique brand of material to the table without necessarily directly competing or interfering with other artists' work. There's room enough out there for all of us, as long as listeners are given a fair choice.

Our songwriting and production values run the gamut from really sloppy (usually on purpose) to pretty good (sometimes by accident!). We don't use professional studios or producers. We are entirely a two-man operation that writes, performs, records, produces, mixes, and masters our own material with relatively low-budget equipment in our home studios. We also typically record and release a song with very low turn around time -- it ranges from a few hours to a couple of weeks after the song is initially written. So we don't even attempt to reach some kind of super-polished production quality that you hear on the radio (although we are always working on making our productions sound better in a shorter period of time).

As far as the compositional quality of the songs goes, that's obviously a matter of opinion, taste, and preference. Our biggest constraint is the time spent writing the song before actually recording and releasing it. We are always striving to write better music in shorter periods of time, and in fact, Benj prefers to work this way. He thinks his songs are better if he harnesses the spontaneity and novelty of a new song with a quick turnaround recording instead of spending weeks producing all the energy out of it. Jeremy works completely differently, however -- he tends to take more time on his songs, meticulously crafting them and revising them until they are as close to perfect as possible.

An interesting side note: although it doesn't happen very often, we find that if people say that our stuff sucks (usually on a foreign message board), it usually means they are actually intrigued by it, enough to take the time to publicize it (!) to all their friends, who are subsequently happy that the said stick-in-the-mud brought it to their attention. What can I say? People are weird.

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6. Are you gay? Do you have herpes? Are you Jewish? Do you smoke pot and collect guns? Are you really captain of the gravy train?

     No. They're just songs.

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7. Will you write some music especially for our site, film, project, etc.?

     Likely, yes, but bear in mind that our services in this regard are not free. Still, you can drop us a line, and we may write you a song because we like you, your site, your project, etc. Or we could write a song for you in exchange for something non-monetary, like advertising on your site or other publicity opportunities. If you're interested, send your proposal here.

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8. How come all the songs are not requests?

     Some of our early songs, as well as occasional others, have come straight from our heads. Upon launching Request-A-Song.com, we had no requests to work with, so it was necessary to begin that way. As for the other times--we regularly write music for our own entertainment and personal pleasure in addition to the music we write especially for Request-A-Song.com. Figuring that our listeners might enjoy it, we occasionally put up one or two of these songs if it seems to fit in with the general spirit of RAS.

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9. What's with the tractor picture on the front page?

     It's an image of a motor grader that Benj took in April 2000 at the construction site of a new mall that was being built behind his place of employment at the time. Thinking it a neat looking scene, Benj snapped a picture. Upon later review of the image, Benj was shocked to find a phantom treble clef appearing in the photo next to the motor grader. He swears that the enormous treble clef wasn't there at the time the photo was taken. Perhaps it is merely a trick of light and shadow, the result of lens flare, or even a stray finger in front of the camera. Still, there are those who attribute greater meaning to the phantom clef's mysterious presence. And we think they're nuts.

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10. Can other artists contribute to Request-A-Song.com?

     At the moment, no. Keep in mind that we are a band, not a songwriting service. Wanting another artist to contribute to RAS is like asking The Beatles to include "Butter Ghost" on Abbey Road. Nonetheless, things are never written in stone here at RAS, and if you're interested in perhaps someday joining our team, send us an email. Tell us your name, what kind of music you like to write, why you are interested, and send us some links to samples of your previous musical work. We'll try to get back to you ASAP.

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