Heroes and Villains of the whole goddam year…

Wow… Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop to look around once in a while you could miss it – or more to the point miss telling all the people who made it happen how wonderful they are…

So the Raw Material heroes and heroic moments of 2009 are as follows:

  • Da Team: Dan, Caitlin, Viv, Mr Bling (and Tom & Ellie) – without the hard work, energy and enthusiasm put in by you guys we wouldn’t be the company we are. And I wouldn’t know half the bands, drinking games, characters on Gossip Girl or street slang I am proud that I do.
  • Hannah Harley Young: one of the nicest people and most talented photographers you could ever encounter. Truly, you are awesome. Welcome to our gang, Missy.
  • Matt Wells: sometimes people come along that you just click with and know you are not only singing from the same hymn-sheet but having a cheeky lager ’round the back of the church afterwards with too. Last year this person was Sean Holbrook (and we’re glad he’s still very much in the Raw Material posse!) and this year Matt Wells from DV8 has taken this title. Let’s raise a warm can over a granite deity to  a successful 2010, Sir!
  • De La Soul: Apparently they spent their collective 40th’s locked in a studio smoking weed. We were entertained just spending a few hours with them. Hilarious.

  • Onwards and Upwards opportunities: we’re as sad as the next person to see the London Paper and Lite go, but proud of the new starts it has been the catalyst for some of our dearest friends for…

  • Mick Wilson from DJ Mag: a true gent. Thanks for supporting our stable of talent…

  • The Tube Carriage office of Joy: we share our office with Jack, Kath, Auro, Duncan and Anna who run Village Underground and we’ve got to say, they rock. Thanks guys for letting us move in so seemlessly and making coming in to work with you guys an added bonus!
  • MC Mr Lukey B: the day in the studio with Victoria Hart, Tim Bazell, Tom Rees- Roberts and the Bling Cool Sound System and Mr Blackall came out with ten minutes of impromptu pirate radio style chat will forever be the stuff legends are made of and proof that there’s so much more to him than snuffling after celebs…(PS we think your beard is possibly the greatest thing ever!)

  • Magda and the staff at BLT: we spend a fortune in this sandwich shop but they have the ability to stuff a whole fridge worth of food into one humble toastie… Even though Dan thinks Magda stole a baby from the street we hope she’s having a great Xmas (and not cooking for anyone!)
  • Christian and the staff at Lena on Gt Eastern St: thanks for giving us a glamorous bolt-hole this year (and turning a bling eye to our bar tab)
  • Zoe: I don’t think all that many people realise just how funny Zoe can be – just one of her many millions of talents – but we’ve laughed out loud through the toughest times this year with some of the things she says… We’re so proud of the success of her website and know 2010 will be her year of world domination!

  • Halloween: possibly usurping xmas now as our festivity of choice; this year big props to Maria and Theo for coming to the Opal Nera Ball with us and to the 60 year old lady who opened up her home to the Mutate Britain gang (plus half of West London) and furnished it with a storm machine, cobwebs, gargoles etc whilst wearing a wedding dress and a crown of thorns! Also  to a girl called Daphne whose costume consisted of some dead chicks… we’re still not quite sure about this one but it certainly livened things up!
  • Garfield, Mutate and our Cordy House family: we are really honoured to work for you guys – what you stand for is legendary and what you’ve achieved is incredible. Special mentions to Alex Wreckage for introducing me to my boyfriend, to Andi Oliver for the best hot chocolate in the world, to Bobby Kray, Stacey and the bar bitches for braving the cold with such high spirits, to Caroline – Sam Heggarty’s missis – for being like a big sister, to Jack for his patience, Jo Dunne for getting things sold, to the 20,000 people who came to One Foot in the Grove this year (especially those who bought art), to the Pakka Horse, Larry the Dog, Sebastian the Dinosaur and all the flamethrowers, stiltwalkers and performers – and to Joe Rush – what can we say, really…? Roll on next year’s show!
  • Nick Warren and Danny Howells: to have you guys on our books is like having a Ferrari in the garage and Nick’s performance at Ministry’s Bday Party and Danny’s seven hour set at the Arts Club are definitely moments of the year.
  • New Talent: but it is also great to have been able to support bright hopes such as Nod Factor and 360 Degree Music’s rosters, Stroll On, True Tiger, Leatherhead, new writers and photographers and interns who have now become publicists…
  • The support of people we respect: Ben Woolf, Sue Skeats, Nick Ede, Gary Berman and Mark Borkowski, it means a lot to know you think we’re doing something right…Thank you.
  • James from Gorkana: where would we be without you? Thanks for listening, being so proactive and supportive. Come see us soon?
  • Nicky Clarke DesiRED hair straighteners: OK, it seems a bit shallow but they really did improve my life this year! Thanks Helen at Brazen PR for sending them…
  • Our Blogger Network: one of the best things we’ve done to date. Drop us a line to rawnews@raw-material.co.uk if you’d like to be included or to recommend a blog to us…
  • Our crew of dreams: the people to whom our doors are always open (you know who you are) but this year we couldn’t have done without (in particular): Andy Dangerfield, Joe Ryan, Nick Delaney, Matt Glass, Charli Morgan, Sophie Gozlan, Jen from This Little Lady, Lucy Land, Marco from Music News, Paolo, Denise Kutzer, Alice Dalton, Amy Studt, Matt Crossick, Mr Beanland, Becky Barratt and Andy Jones…

And a brief mention of the bad guys:

  • The Burglars: we’ve not quite been the same since, for all sorts of reasons. A heartfelt request guys – please don’t do it again!
  • Rodliffe Accounting: thieves and misogynists.
  • The guy who attacked me outside Chinawhite: Dave Thorpe, I hope we never ever meet again…
  • Substandard PRs: there have been a few people whom we feel let the industry down. We are proud of what we do and proud to contstantly try to raise the bar – we wish you guys felt the same…
  • Alex and Adam: even though you don’t talk to us anymore it was nice to play cupid and we’re glad it all worked out so well! Hope it’s as good in real life as it is on Twitter ;)
  • Yellow Nail Polish: it looks great when it’s on but for about three months afterwards Dan still thought I had jaundice…

HAPPY NEW YEAR: BRING IT ON!

Firgas

2010: Back 2 Basics

The thing I like about the ressurgence of popularity of that ‘Keep Calm and Carry on’ poster isn’t so much the wartime message motivating us through tough times but more the simplicity of the Ministry of Information. Plain, non-ambiguous text on a red background. No messing.

This year one of our goals is to embrace simplicity and straightforwardness.

One of the greatest bits of ‘stunt’ PR I have ever seen was actually unintentional. A kid sent in a picture to Look In magazine back in the 80s with a picture of his brother standing next to George Michael holding a plank which had ‘I am a plank’ written on it. Genius. (Laurence Lancashire in later years did something similar with Will Young and a Furby to get the tabloid headline ‘Will Young likes Pussy!’)

And if anyone else remembers the 90s  as the decade of t-shirt bands you’ll recall plain and simple statements such as Silverfish’s ‘Lips Hips Tits Power’ and the Family Cat’s ‘All Other Bands are Dogsh*t’ – a step away from the post modern ‘Frankie Says Relax’ or ‘Choose Life’ slogans and without  thought of any subtle brand collaborations…

Raw Material has always been about taking a straight talking, no bullsh*t approach. We’re bored of seeing press releases kicking about and asking ourselves where the point is – after three paragraphs…

So in 2010 we’re going back to the old skool with clear, simple media messaging: Our clients are f*cking exciting!

We’re not here til next year…

 

After our final champagne picnic of 2009 in the tube train office we’re off for chrimbo…

We’re still picking up emails and all that malarky – never fear – but we’ll be doing it with mince pies in our mitts…

Happy Christmas from Dan, Firgas, Caitlin, Viv and Mr Bling…x

Listen again to Justin Sandercoe on Liberty Radio

If you didn’t catch Justin and Liberty Radio’s Richard Andersone getting on like a house on fire at the start of the month on the More Music Breakfast Show, you can listen again here

Justin’s debut album Small Town Eyes is set to come out January 2010, and he’ll be around for interviews throughout January. To get in touch with Justin for an interview, or for a review copy of the album, drop us a line at dan@raw-material.co.uk