Red Bull is famous for its creative publicity, and after the Felix Baumgartner jump the company is attempting something that has proven just as challenging in the past: getting bands in the Middle East to go global.
The competition is called the Red Bull Bedroom Jam and it is based around a simple concept: the bands create a profile to ‘mobilise’ their fan base and Red Bull’s Buzz metre gauges how much each band is talked about and their general online presence. The top eight bands get to battle it out by performing for the world – from their bedroom.
Red Bull makes each band turn their bedroom into a stage unto the world, and the most talked about band of those eight will win the prize of recording an album in Red Bull’s studio in Madrid.
In the Middle East region, the countries eligible to participate were Egypt, UAE, Qatar, KSA, Bahrain, Lebanon, Jordan, Oman and Kuwait. Out of eight bands that have made it to the Bedroom Jam, seven are Egyptian and only Blimp is Lebanese. The bands include SimpleXity, Portrait Avenue and 3adam El En7eyaz records.
How the Buzz metre works is largely a mystery and Red Bull says that if it were made public the bands would figure out how to work the system to their advantage. That might mean bands from a populous country like Egypt would have an advantage over bands from smaller countries.
Red Bull does list a number of things bands can do to influence their Buzz metre, including number of views, the rating and the comments on the bands’ Red Bull Bedroom Jam pages. Also used are tweets that include the bands’ Twitter handles, page views on MySpace and number of plays on their MySpace music players and on YouTube.
The first phase of the competition ended on 31 October and the second phase will end when the Bedroom Jam is concluded.