Blog: This Is Our Jam
Team: Krista, Kristen, and Stacey
Occupations: Krista is a Consultant, Kristen is a Contracts Coordinator at a non-profit, and Stacey is an Editor (we’re very typical D.C.-ers...)
Current residence: Arlington, VA and Washington, D.C.
Tell us about This Is Our Jam. When did you start your blog? What gave you the courage and motivation to get going?
This Is Our Jam is the (mostly) musical brainchild of three friends who, once upon a time, changed their gchat statuses a lot. We love to share music, YouTube gems, and other assorted thoughts with the world.
Most of the conversations we had (before we began blogging) started with the phrase, “I have a lot of thoughts.” Finally, we decided (read: hoped) the rest of the world would be as entertained by us as we were, so we started a blog in May 2011 really just about our thoughts. Over the next few months, it morphed into a music-centric blog, but we still like to have occasional posts that are quirky and about some of our other interests.
What's the most important thing when it comes to the music you recommend?
The most important thing is that we honestly like the music we’re recommending. We never want to suggest new bands simply for the sake of being cool or novel (or even simply because someone asks us to).
Along that line, we want to be genuine with sharing what we like. If we’re unabashedly into the latest Justin Bieber song (and we often are), we won’t not post it for fear of not seeming cool enough. We also recognize that it can be daunting to press play on a random song or band you’ve never heard of, so we try to use our features like Band Math and If You Like to make new music more accessible.
What are some of your all-time favorite posts?
This is like choosing a favorite child! Among our many, many favorites are our interview with Vacationer, a throwback to Now! That’s What I Call Music, and our Halloween playlist.
Many blogs are produced by an individual. Tell us where the team aspect comes into This Is Our Jam. How do you work?
First of all, we sort of like each other a lot (and we look like sisters), so that helps. But seriously, gchat and Google Docs make collaborating SO easy. We are constantly having group chats and never-ending emails chains about happy hour upcoming posts. We get so excited when it comes time to draft new playlists, and we collaborate well together when one of us isn’t feeling her wittiest. And because there are three of us, it’s really great that the others can pick up the slack while one of us is traveling or super swamped at work—we like to keep the jams coming for you!
For all three of you ladies, what's everyone listening to now?
Krista: If you haven’t heard “Ho Hey” by The Lumineers. Go listen to it right now. We’ll wait.
Stacey: Alabama Shakes. On repeat.
Kristen: I’m completely addicted to Zak Waters (see the player below), and there’s no cure.
Any words of wisdom for budding bloggers?
Don’t be afraid to start a blog on a whim! We did, and it’s been such a great journey. Our blog has grown with us, and evolved so much over the course of its life, and it all started with a post that contained nothing more than a YouTube video.
Network with other bloggers that aren’t in the same niche as you. We’re members of the Capitol Area Fashion and Beauty Bloggers (CapFABB) group (because why not?), and we’ve partnered up with one of our favorite local hockey blogs, What’s Up, Ya Sieve. Don’t be afraid to put yourself (or your blog) out there. When we started (and still now), we would email tons of bands and agents to try set up interviews and make connections, but you just have be persistent (and not be afraid of coming across as a bit of a creeper...).
Lastly, don’t take yourself too seriously. And make sure that it’s still fun—that should be the priority! When it gets to be stressful, take a step back and remember that there are bigger things in the world (for us, our friendship) and that the blog is just an exciting way to express yourself.