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Friday, April 12, 2013

Spotlight on Virtual Music Magazine and Jay Hurikan- Lanai Jarrico Reporting

Virtual Music Service Magazine (VMS) is a music company that focuses on virtual world talent in Second Life ©.  This magazine provides music lovers a variety of information about various artists and helps musicians with visibility across the internet using promotional tools like Facebook and joint collaborations with other virtual world media sources, like The SL Enquirer. Within their web pages you will find interviews with musicians, blog articles and web –based radio broadcasting.

The SL Enquirer met up with Jay Hurikan, the man behind VMS to talk about the things they offer the community and how new musicians can get the help they need to get started performing across the grid, including some great exposure.

Interview with Jay Hurikan

Lanai: Hi Jay, we’ve been working together behind the scenes for quite some time now. I think it is about to we share with our readers a little bit about you and what you have provided for the music industry here in Second Life. What brought you to Second Life?
Jay: Honestly, when I first connected to Second Life it is now 6 years ago, I had never heard about it. Actually, I was looking on the internet for something to do online. I fell on second life by chance looking for MMORPG.
Lanai: You certainly found a great virtual world for things to do! What I love most about Second Life is the way people are brought together as a global community. Where are you from?

Jay: I’m from France and I also love the way we share information in second life, like meeting people from all around the world and share our experience.

Lanai: I know when I was a noob, I felt lost and went through a lot of trials and errors before I found my place here.  What was your first impression of this virtual world, did you share these same struggles?

Jay: When I connected for the first time in second life I was really lost. There was a gateway for people from France, like Admicile. They provided all the help you need to start with second life. I didn’t know Admicile when I first connected. I was trying to understand the game on my own. I remember one of the first conversations I had with a girl. I asked her what’s the objective of this game and what are we supposed to do, she told me you can do whatever you like. I thought, hum ok.
Lanai: Has Second Life changed your perspective of other cultures since you have been here?

Jay: Yes, a lot. I discovered the French and American cultures first, then I met some people from other countries and I learned a lot of things like sharing experiences with people living in Sweden, Holland or even Australia.

Lanai: That’s really great to be able to do that n Second Life. Would you say SL is an extension of your real life or a hobby?

Jay: It was a hobby the first times I connected. First thing I did in SL was try to find some work. Luckily after a couple weeks, I started working for Jénzine Magazine; a French online magazine.   I created Jay Hurikan, a work based account.  I think that Second life is a good way to escape from Real life, in my opinion Second Life is not game but a way to get away from reality and what we can’t be in Real life. It is an expression of our creativity for a small amount of money .I couldn’t run such a thing in real life.

Lanai:  That makes sense.  With that said, how many hours a week would you say you spend in Second Life?

Jay: Oh I spend all my time in second life. lol I don’t work in real life so I have all the time to connect in Second Life.

Lanai:  What a luxury that is.  So, on a typical day, what are you usually up to?

Jay: Well, I go to see live music performances in second life, work on Virtual Music Services and spend some time with friends in clubs.

Lanai: Nice, I would have to say you are living it up like a Rock star in Second Life. Speaking of VMS, what inspired you to create your music magazine and what kinds of things does it offer the Second Life community?

Jay: Actually, VMS Magazine is the third try.  I used to own Zengmagazine and Cisumwwebzine, both of those magazines were also focused on music.
VMS is the third magazine I run and it is doing well.  I enjoy doing it. The musical scene is really active. I believe music in second life is the only thing that will never die .It is always moving.  I see new musicians every day and there is a lot of potential. I learned a lot about the music scene in SL thanks to Jénzine Magazine where I spent about one and a half years as a prospector.
When they left SL, I decided to make my own magazine. It started as a word press website when I created ZengMagazine .I was a noob at creating websites. I believe VMS is a successful accomplishment of 4 years of experience in SL music venues and Magazine ownership.

Lanai:  I think you are doing a great job with VMS. So, what is your main objective with VMS?
Jay: To promote musicians performing all around the grid as best as I could. I had to stop coming to SL for one year because of RL work. During that time, I thought a lot about how to grow a good music thing in SL. I up came with the idea to create something huge, but SL costs money and I couldn’t run some aspects of VMS. Now VMS Magazine is a promotional tool for musicians and only features music related news, music venues and radio.

Lanai:  That is great for people that like to follow the music scene in Second Life. Can you tell me about your website and web based radio?

Jay: Well, the magazine is now on Joomla and we publish as a blog. We try to publish one revue every couple of days. I’d like to do more but currently we have only 2 reporters who are good and are not robots. It is hard to find some reliable people that are serious and who want to work in Second Life. So for this reason I thank my reporters Pen Dragon, Sarah Elisabeth Brenham and my chief editor Stacy Mosely. I hope to find a third reporter to have one review a day.
Concerning the radio, it is just a hobby. When I came back to second life, I wanted to create a radio for second life musicians, but that is a full time job. My music venue and the magazine take a lot of my time already. So now VMS radio is just a 24/7 playlist broadcasting all kind of rock music. (Genres from ska to NU metal)

Lanai:  Yes, I know all too well that running a news source is time consuming but not only do you have a website and web-based radio but you also recently started an in world magazine version? How are they different?
Jay: Well the difference is the price lol. To make an inworld magazine, you need to have a big team of graphic designers, several reporters and some money. We released 5 issues of VMS Inworld Magazine so far. It was working really well, we even had about 16 000 readers on and some of our magazine issues are still being read. My graphic designer was one of my best friend in second life, she made all the layout of the inworld magazine but I couldn’t pay her. After 5-6 months she decided to stop because it was taking too much time and it was not sustainable anymore. We are still friend even if she doesn’t come on online anymore. Her name was Thirza Ember and I really am thankful for her because without her, we couldn’t have made such a great inworld magazine.
Lanai: True, it takes more than one person to create something like that.  I notice you are dressed like Slash, former lead guitarist for the famous 80’s band Guns N Roses. Is this a representation of your personal style?

Jay: No not really. I am a drummer in real life and not a guitarist lol. I am a fan of bands as you said like Guns’n Roses . Metallica or Pantera. Slash is one of my favorite musicians in Real Life so I am having some fun with this avatar. It is very close to the real Slash  J

Lanai:  lol I know! Cigarette and all! Talking about style, how would you describe VMS style compared to your own?
Jay:  VMS is a creation of my own so I would say it is myself in VMS.  I love music and I have found the best way to promote the musicians thanks to our magazine. I like to share music with others too; you can see on my facebook page that there are several videos from second life and real life musicians. I just like music and VMS is a part of me J
Lanai: Is VMS open to any genre of music?
Jay: Yes we write on all kind of musicians in second life, except the DJ’s.
Lanai:  Aww poor Dj’s. They need love too ya know! Lol There is a lot of talent here in Second Life. Do you have any favorites?

Jay: Oh yes many. I think TerryLynn Melody is a wonderful musician and ….yes I have a lot of favorites and when possible I book those artists for the VMS Music Venue.

Lanai: Being a media source manager myself, I know it can be a challenge to keep up with both real life and Second Life. How do you manage?
Jay: Actually, I have a chief editor who is excellent; she is American so she can promote the magazine in the US.  I promote the magazine in the other part of the world. Since I am not working in real life at this time, I have all my days free for second life and VMS...
Lanai: What kind of service do you offer musicians looking for exposure?
Jay: I came with the idea to make some inworld services like profile pics and biographies creation. We also used Facebook and Twitter for promoting.
Are there any fees for these services?
Jay: There was but we don’t provide those services anymore
Lanai: How would you prefer to be contacted?
Jay: Directly in world I like to meet the people who are interested in VMS.  Otherwise email is good too.  virtualmusicserv@gmailcom

Lanai: What advice would you give to new musicians interested in showcasing their talent here in Second Life?
Jay: There are a lot of venues who are doing Open Mic.  It is a good way to start for some exposure. I have a message for second life musicians; don’t think you are going to be rich with SL.  It has to be a fun way to play for second life. Some musicians are making a lot of money but music venues are important too. It is hard to make some money with a music venue. They have to pay musicians and land fees, so tipping them is very important. Above all, it shouldn’t be all about money. It has to be for fun.
Lanai: Second life has gone through many changes through the years; where do you see the future of virtual world music?
Jay: It will always exist I believe, I mean it is a good way to promote with an audience composed of a global stage. Promoting isn’t only done in Second Life, websites like The Stage TV and social media helps too.
Lanai: Are you hiring anyone for VMS? If so, what positions do you have available?
Jay: Yes, we are looking for one more good and reliable reporter.
Lanai: Do you offer advertising to anybody? If so, do you have any current specials?
Jay: Yes we offer advertising on our magazine. For a small amount of linden we offer some ads space in our magazine and main website
Prices start at 1000 LS and 2000 LS month for a special ad (the banner below the menu)
Lanai:   You have an inworld office and venue that was established in June of 2011.  How often do you have event there?

Jay: Yes and we have two or three events per week.
Lanai: Can Musicians book your venue or do you do exclusive invites?

Jay: We handle the booking but it is open to every musician from beginners to seasoned professionals.

Lanai: I’m excited to share that we are teaming up for our first exclusive event together. Would you like to tell our readers when it is?

Sure, The SL Enquirer and VMS have created a special White Party event on the 16th of April from 3pm to 5pm SLT. It will be an event with me as DJ and I hope AMFORTE Clarity after my set. It will be a good way to celebrate a partnership between our two magazines!

Lanai:  I look forward to it!  Ok let’s wrap up this interview. What group can people join to keep up with your music news and special events?
We have only one group and it is called Virtual Music Services. I will finish with these words: Thanks to the VMS team for such a great job!  I am very thankful and thank you for the interview  J


Additional Information:

Virtual music Services Main Website
Virtual Music Radio.


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