Today’s Feature, January 16-17, 2008: TheOneLove.org

January 17, 2008 at 11:34 pm (Today's Feature)

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If it were up to me, web sites like TheOneLove.org would be the most visited sites in the world. To tell you the truth, I’m not sure why such a thoughtful site isn’t one of the most popular destinations on the net. Just look at the recipe:

– Blogs written by some of the most talents upcoming artists in the world,

– The celebration of one of man’s greatest creations, music, and

– Charity. The more popular the site gets, the more money it provides to charities of all kinds.

It all started when Cassie Petrey, Jade Driver and Ben Romans of The Click Five got together in England one night to simply discuss blogging. What formed was TheOneLove.org, a site with a mission to “encourage all music listeners to respect all types of music… to bring together the music community and help everyone realize that no matter what the genre or the subject matter, we all write, produce, market and consume music for the same reason…we love it!”

Now the group stands firm behind their cause, “to help bring a little light to as many people as we can by building our own community of dedicated artists, writers, producers and fans who can come together with their combined passion and love of music and change the lives of others.” The artists that blog for the site have chosen one charity to support, and 100% of all profits collected from traffic to their blog page are donated to their charity of choice. What’s better than that?

Ben Romans actually supplied the answers to our XXQ’s, so make sure you show some support and check out The Click Five playing an upcoming group of shows at Bill’s Bar in Boston, where the band played their first ever show. And check out TheOneLove.org for information on a songwriter’s show in NYC at the Bitter End. Jump into the XXQ’s for even more. TheOneLove.Org

XXQs: TheOneLove.Org – Ben Romans (The Click Five)

PensEyeView.com : How and when did TheOneLove.Org first come about?

Ben Romans: Cassie Petrey, Jade Driver and I accidently started brainstorming after a show one night in Nottingham, England, and they recommended that I start blogging. At first, I didn’t find myself to be a “myspace-type blogging kid”, but then I realized that it allows some great possibilities for an artist to share their passions, sometimes more than they are allowed to in the media world and behind a marketing plan. Later on, after wanting to somehow start a charity with the band perhaps, that idea fused with the idea of a blogging community of passionate folks in the music business, and bam, the idea turned into a reality… thanks to the web wizard skills of Cassie and Jade.

PEV: What is the overall mission behind TheOneLove.Org ? Has that changed over time at all?

BR: The overall mission is to simply share your passion within an online community, and give back through charity. Nothing has changed drastically yet, as we are a new organization, but we hope to have fun events over time, if it grows.

PEV: Who can we find blogging on TheOneLove.Org? Is any and all welcome?

BR: As of current, we are starting with friends, friends of friends, and so forth and so on. Eventually, I think the site will open up to comments giving readers a chance to “respond blog”. If you are an artist interested, please contact us through the site!

PEV: On the site there are many well known music and art bloggers. How has the response been so far from the outside community about what TheOneLove.Org is doing?

BR: So far so good! What’s great about a community, is we have fans from different artists, so we get a lot of great response and ideas from them.

PEV: You are a member of the extremely popular band The Click Five. What has been the best part about your career so far? Did you ever think you’d be where you are today?

BR: The best part of the career… there’s a few. Our recent tour of Asia was mind-blowing. I find the best part of anything, is seeing the process of creating a song, watching it take shape in the studio, and then seeing the results first hand as it’s played live. It’s the beauty of sharing. I am always in shock of some of the things I get to do as a result of this band, and am very proud to be playing with such close friends and amazing musicians.

PEV: What is the band working on now?

BR: We’re about to do some shows back in the states on the east coast. Two very special shows will be at Bill’s Bar in Boston, where the band played their first show ever. We’re playing with an amazing Boston band, Damone… AND might I add, Mike Woods, of Damone will be a newcomer to The One Love very soon!

PEV: Tell us a little about the guys behind The Click Five. What would we be surprised to hear?

BR: I’m just proud to be in a band of good guys. Everyone in the band is an educated musician, and cares about music more than I think they get credit for. I think people always are surprised to hear that my band started from different indie rock bands that fused together in Boston… before we got haircuts.. haha.

PEV: Where do you think TheOneLove.Org will be in 20 years?

BR: That’s really up to anyone who supports it. It would be amazing for this organization to grow, get new and exciting artists, and open up opportunities to do benefit concerts, recordings, and passion-based events all over the world.

PEV: What is your opinion on the growing phenomenon of blogging?

BR: As I said earlier, I was almost terrified at first, as it can be full of opinions and such. However, I began to look at blogging in the same way that I looked at essays in college, or prose. I like to look at it as art, and art comes with mistakes, but you can’t paint an idea unless you try, right? So if there’s a purpose, then I’m all for it, especially when I learn something new from the artists that do it.

PEV: On TheOneLove.Org you list a saying: “Love life. Love music. Love communication. Love one another. Love progress. Love companionship. Love art. Love passion.” What is your take on today’s music and art scene and is it still as “lovely” as we all hope it can be?

BR: That’s a good question. I’ll try to state a short answer. I look at it in two pieces. There is a scene, and there is an industry. I suppose one needs the other to be heard. It’s no myth that the industry is changing and in trouble as tangible records are becoming obsolete. However, industries come and go. There have been music industries before there were records, for example Tin Pan Alley. So in the midst of changes, I think that the actual music community is going to become stronger and more creative, or so I hope. The actual interest in music has been pretty high, as of recent, as far as the public goes, though it doesn’t show in sales. I’m also would like to continue and encourage the public to check out live music. There’s a lot of good stuff out there.

PEV: What advice can you give to any inspiring young artists out there, being told that they can’t make a living in the creative arts world?

BR: I’ve been told that a million times. I mean, I still am told that… haha. The advice is: keep working and working and working. You can only get better. Also be conscious of your heros in music and take note of what they’re doing or what they did. There’s a lot of resources out there.

PEV: Do all the bloggers on TheOneLove.Org mostly agree with one another?

BR: Not necessarily, but I think that everyone does have a passion for either creating, performing, or the business, and giving back to the community. This sets up an interesting palette of thoughts.

PEV: How often do you blog on TheOneLove.Org?

BR: I blog whenever I have time, or feel like I have something to write about.

PEV: The site was created in Nottingham, England. How is the pop culture community in England different than that of the US?

BR: I have ALWAYS been a fan of British bands growing up and now. I really don’t know what it is… I can say that more melodic based compositions are being written, and that the public seems to be more interested in the music than the lifestyle…. I could be wrong, but that’s my outside observation.

PEV: Is there an up and coming artist or band right now that we should all be looking out for?

BR: A few- I’ll go ahead and list a few bloggers: Atomic Tom. Every time I see them play in NYC, they keep getting better and better. Go check them out. Also, Frank Ciampi just put out one of the most brilliant power pop records I have heard in quite some time. Worth a listen!

PEV: You also offer video blogs on the site. How have the videos helped advance TheOneLove.Org cause?

BR: It generates interest to get more people to the site. We’re going to actually tape the next songwriter’s show coming up. This gives people a unique look into the events that The One Love put together. If people enjoy it, they’ll have another reason to visit the site, or participate in events.

PEV: What has been the best part about the site’s success so far?

BR: Being involved with a group of passionate people, and getting to tap into the brains of our bloggers everytime I read what they have to say.

PEV: What is your “One Love”?

BR: Wow… now THAT’s a question… haha. Tough one, because it could be many things. I’ll leave it all: I love to create, and I love having awesome friends.

PEV: What is currently on your iPod or in your CD player right now?

BR: The new Hard-Fi record. Awesome. I also have been listening to “Lurch”, the new Mike Viola record, and some Jon Brion film scores.

PEV: So, what is next for TheOneLove.Org?

BR: We’re doing a songwriter’s show in NYC at the Bitter End at 9:30pm. It’s going to be a very unique night of music, so if you’re in town please come check it out!! Visit the site for more details.

For more information on TheOneLove.Org, check out www.TheOneLove.Org

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