Sirens and Shelter talks about connecting with people through music on behind the music

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I have very little interest in the music business. For me, creating, releasing and performing music is about connecting with people, not the number of likes, downloads, views, streams or sales. I take pride in my work and that will always trump trying to “make it”, whatever that means.


Band Name: Sirens & Shelter
All music by Scott Mallard

Song name: Carried Your Weight

Music Genre: Rock & Alternative

I live in... Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, though I was born and grew up in Gravesend in Kent, England.

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In the summer of 2018, I moved to Malaysia and, without meaning to, continued to write songs.

‘Carried Your Weight’ is quite simply a release of frustration at a situation back home which I felt powerless to influence or help resolve; I could only observe from afar.

Living 7000 miles away from your family and friends has its difficulties, and feeling the distance is definitely one of them. This track is personal and I think you can really hear that in my vocal takes.

The music...

It’s difficult to explain why I create, but I’ve definitely used my time away from family and friends as a source of “inspiration”. I’m not particularly good at answering questions or expressing myself under pressure; taking time to write songs helps me reflect and articulate things in a way that I struggle to, ordinarily. 

Aside from this, after releasing two acoustic full-length records, I just really wanted to make some noise and get loud!

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How do you think this release represents your current direction?

‘Carried Your Weight’ is a very significant release for me, as it represents a new beginning and direction for my music. As I mentioned before, my previous releases have been acoustically driven, but I’ve found that by adding additional instruments and starting a “band”, I feel I’m able to express myself in greater depth. 

I worked with a wonderfully kind and talented producer and a drummer called Paul West at Awesome Source Recording. He has helped me capture ideas that shaped this song, and I’m incredibly grateful for his help.

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What most inspires you?

I’ve spent the last few years living abroad and this has given me some great memories and also some incredibly humbling experiences. I love writing songs because it challenges me to communicate and capture these memories and experiences. Everything I write tends to be quite emotionally charged; I wouldn’t want to release music that wasn’t genuine. 

Writing songs is incredibly enriching when you achieve something that you’re proud of. It takes me a long time to write music because I want to achieve balance, meaning, connection and musical ideas that resonate with me. There’s a lot to consider and many important decisions to be made with every song.

Website & social media links:


Jacqueline Jax I totally agree with Scott. Music shouldn't be only about the number of likes, it should be about the connection with those who hear you.

Percival Ngidi one,as long as you reach someone's heart

Greg Godovitz You only need two followers... in my case it was my Mom and Dad who never tired of telling interested strangers that I was their son... Xoxo

Theo Starr None... if you have influenced someone for the better that's all you need

Joe Ausmus I've heard to strive for 1000 fans that will spend $100 per year on music, merch, tickets etc.

Jamie Lee Fisher If you create music fluently and can express your emotions than you are a successful musician

Kendall Hollinger 0. But you need a whole lot of friends & listeners haha!

Victor Kanmelu i dont think followers online really matter you know. i believe your real follower or followers must be that person that is committed to your success. i dont really believe in having huge follower base to make an impact, i believe in one being a majority like example one man can change the world, one follower can buy all your merch , one follower can buy all your c.d, one man in the bible prayed and the heavens ceased of rain. i dont believe having so much followers result to a musicians success. its even risky in a way security wise.

Squigee Mango Depends what you mean by successful followers and likes can be bought so how many can you afford......

Thomas Craymer Both sides are somewhat valid (: having computers does make it much easier for independent artists (such as myself) to record more songs without having to pay overpriced studio prices....

Though with all the artists starting up, talent alone is not enough to get oneself noticed, but a good image for a target audience, and a lot of luck is also needed....

Ryan Kirkpatrick It isn't all negative though. I'd just encourage artists not to fall into the trap of believing success is predicated upon a metric, number or algorithm. Music and art are about tangible, substantive connections and emotional commonalities. I guess you have to prioritize what's more important, money, or matter. You still have to get out, take your message and art to the people. I still believe that most of those who are searching for something, aren't finding it on a device screen. Make it personal. It matters. Cheers!

Steve Wilkins With all I’ve done online so far, I’ve been much more successful busking, playing shows, and selling CDs to people at work than I have been promoting online. So for me I would say it’s not easier.

Chris Franz Its easier to promote yourself but the numbers you are required to have on all social media platforms restricts a lot of new talent from even a shot at becoming big. For example the model country music uses now for new artist is to not only get them touring but also get them on a radio tour as well. Of course the artists must foot the bill but its really the only way to get near the charts. You dont have to be number 1 on the charts to get noticed but you need to on the chart. Social media becomes a marketing tool but ultimately you need to increase your fan base the old fashion way. Playing the gigs and getting the fans.

Jacqueline Jax Hi Chris. So true. But I had to build my business every stage of the way and if I wanted to make music my business, I would treat it just like that. Invest in your product and the marketing. Have a good plan and push forward. But at the end of the day, it’s very hard work and many artists just don’t have what it takes to stay dedicated.

Victor Kanmelu You must have real skills , internet is just to have presence and marketing but tell me whats presence and marketing without quality content my queen? infact when i get to where God is taking me to you shall not see me online anymore, i shall relegate all duties to my manager because i shall be busiest on the field. one more thing am gonna impact my spirit into my manager so he/she wouldnt be posting whats not me

Slam Dunk Theres nothing easy about being a music. Otherwise everybody would do it. but its a great trip.

Vern Peterka I think the internet has nothing to do with “becoming” a musician. It might have lessons to learn and a means to show the world what you do, but becoming a musician is something that is in us, in our hearts. The majority if my music making happens in my studio with no internet connection happening.

Prin Sielski I get what your saying. It matters, because your music and creative projects need to be heard. I know for myself, there was nothing more discouraging than people in my family and friend circles knowing I was working on musical projects and sort of shrugging things off. People are aware of the physical, financial, mental, and emotional investment there is when creating music and the very low return rate on any profit, and yet, they are willing to like, share, comment on posts of trendy or famous people, but not their own creative family and friends. So yes, likes, comments, and all that social media stuff matters, because that is how people hear anything these days. Without an active social media base, there is no one to hear your music. Also, I’ve known people who have a large following and when something gets put out, like an album or a simple single, almost none of those social media followers will even spend the blessed $1 it takes to support the person lol ... oy! So you can’t even say having active followers guarantees anything! AhhhhH!

Thomas Craymer Very, as I am still starting.... so far, my favourite comment was from a friend Ron.... he said "Take the psychedelic path less travelled, and you'll find Thomas Craymer".... I have included that comment on my Spotify bio (:

Johnny Travis Yeah too many cheeky fkrs Some need a slap lol

Karisa Kay Support is important but most important is “that song helped me” that is why I do it!!

Gregory Boyce Halls I value comments because they tell me what people feel but i applaud your perspective.