CMJ responds – “we…listen to…every single artist”
Matt McDonald of CMJ sent in this official response to the story I published earlier today:
We very much appreciate the amount of blood, sweat, and tears that each artist puts into his/her music, and the CMJ Music Marathon wouldn’t have lasted for 27 years if that appreciation were not in clear focus for everyone involved in the event. As head of the staff who reviews the music and selects the artists for the marathon, I can tell you firsthand that we do in fact listen to at least two songs from every single artist who applies, either by mail or via Sonicbids. In the case of Sonicbids submissions, for ease of listening, the showcase department downloads mp3s from their EPKs and drops them into our iTunes player. Sonicbids has recently changed their system to track streamed plays, however it does not currently track these mp3 downloads, making it appear that we did not listen when in fact we did. We can report back which specific songs were reviewed. Our review process is extremely thorough and difficult and with or without payment for submissions, I cannot even fathom the injustice of ignoring any submissions. I can reassure you that each and every artist was given the same respect and critique. We are truly thankful for every artist’s interest in this year's CMJ Music Marathon and wish them continued success in their future.