I got an email yesterday that there were new tunes on Musical Family Tree, and felt really happy to see that the site still going strong. But then I thought, ‘I wonder how many people DO take advantage of what MFT has to offer, or even realize what it is?’ So world, I’m going to inform you how to get the most out of Indiana’s unique MP3 archive site, Musical Family Tree.
I remember when I was a freshman at IU, starting out what became my three years of servitude on Union Board, the student programming committee (now I’m a director, so Boo-yah!). I was trying to get to know more of the area bands, but couldn’t afford to keep buying CDs, so when a friend said “Why don’t you just use Musical Family Tree?” I gave him a confused look and was told the secrets. Musical Family Tree is an online archive of Indiana bands (plus a few extra now). It was started in Indianapolis, Indiana by Jeb Banner in 2004, and has been growing ever since. In 2007-2008, the site went through a major upgrade, and now it is a full service networking site for music fans.
The new Musical Family Tree site utilizes the Ning social network creating service. Join the site for free and you get your own page on the site where you can add ‘friends’, comment in groups and discussion boards, and display information about your own musical interests. Check out mine. You can also add events to the event calendar for upcoming shows, chat with other users, and check out photos and videos uploaded by members. I highly recommend you seek out those photos/videos, because most of them are pretty retro, such as this 1988 Indiana Daily Student article on a locally made compilation cassette, or this photo from WIUX (then WIUS) Culture Shock 1990.
I’m sure this all means nothing to you if you aren’t from the Bloomington-Indianapolis area, so I’ll get to what really counts, The MFT MP3 Archive. It’s here where you can find a collection of music from Indiana’s indie past and present. There are some real gems in there, such as old demos from Margot & the Nuclear So and So’s (back when they were signed to Indy indie label, Standard Recording Company), or as well as old tunes, rare tracks, and live performances from The Impossible Shapes, Racebannon, Dave Fischoff, Kentucky Nightmare, the Delicious, Mudkids, and so many more. Even better, there are tracks up from now defunct bands and side projects such as BIGBIGcar (David Adamson’s band pre-Grampall Jookabox), Arrah and the Ferns, Handbook For William (Mike Adams and Tim Felton pre-husband&wife), and Archer Avenue and Panic Attacks! (Richard Edwards’ of Margot & the Nuclear So and So’s plus friends). It’s a great source for getting to know music from the area, and appreciating the many great bands that have graced the Indiana music scene.
Anyway, in with the new. New music has just been uploaded from Prizzy Prizzy Please, We Are Hex, Racebannon, and Everything, Now!, so run over there, join up, and check it out!