Kat Nicolls on finding new music:

A music lovers greatest thrill is always finding a new band to fall in love with, nothing else quite matches that feeling like you’re a kid thats been told juicy gossip. Some people choose to keep this information a secret and walk around a little bit more smug than everyone else, and some people want to scream their new love from the rooftops. I personally fall into the second camp- If I’ve fallen in love with a song/band/artist, everyone knows about it. So I thought I’d compile a little list about how I go about finding new music, of course with technology these days it’s easy to discover new talent on the web and TV, so here are a couple of other options to add on for optimum success….

1) word of mouth:
This is usually a fail safe method of finding great tunes, whether it’s you best mate demanding you hear a song or a random excited tweet from Fearne Cotton on twitter. It’s always a good idea to give them a go- if it can make one person that happy it’s worth a shot no? Through this method I’ve found some of my favourite artists, Laura Marling http://www.lauramarling.com/, Peggy Sue http://www.myspace.com/peggywho and Russell Joslin http://www.myspace.com/russelljoslinesquire (you see what I did there- pass it along kids).

2) The support:
I love when this happens, you go to a gig to see a favourite band, but then just when you’re comfortably propping up the bar waiting for the main act- something amazing pulls you to the stage. Suddenly you’re in love with whoever it is that’s making your skin go all goosepimply and you’re desperately searching drum kits and banners for their name. If in doubt, don’t feel scared to shout out “What are you called?” Most bands will be more than happy to tell you.

3) Buying a completely random CD:
This is always fun, I browse around whatever CD shop I’m in and if a cover or a name grabs me, I purchase. I know it’s wrong to judge a CD for it’s cover and all- but hey, it’s a fun game. Of course this is risky, and I have been left with some doozeys, but when you pick up a hidden gem it feels like fate wanted you to discover them. The best places to do this are in independent record shops and charity shops- adds some character to the choices.

4) Heading to the hidden stages at Festivals:
For example, the gazebo in the woods at Bestival. A great way to find new talent, and to fall in love with gravely voiced bearded front men….

5) Late night TV:
OK, this has only happened to me a couple of times, but worth mentioning. Late night with Jools Holland always has amazing artists, also keep an eye out for coverage from festivals, they can show you the stages you didn’t realise existed. This is how I discovered Seasick Steve http://www.myspace.com/seasicksteve.

6) TV Adverts:
Surprisingly packed with good musical talent. This is how I found Lisa Mitchell http://www.myspace.com/lisalisamitchell My next mission is to find out who sings the song on those oxford notebooks adds….

So there you have it, a few different and fun ways to find your new favourite-band-in-the-world-ever. Good luck and God Speed.