The Story Behind The Mix Tape Series


The Mix Tape Series 

Years ago, a local musician told me about a song swap. Interesting? 

“A song swap did you say? Tell me more please!” 

The originator of this project told me that his game plan was to involve numerous local jam bands. 

“You got my attention, keep going please!”

The  idea behind this innovative project was for each band to throw their names in a hat and pick out another band’s music to cover. Right off the bat,  I loved the idea. Local bands covering other local bands’  music, how cool would that be?!  This was going to bring me one step closer to not hearing “Brown Eyed Girl” for the millionth time. 

This project really stuck with me because it was different than the normal. It was creative!  Each band would put forth their own rendition of the other band’s song,  but we never really got around to getting the project off the ground.  

Transition to today; from spending my last six years submerged in the local industry,  I am completely aware of failed projects. I have a giant list of them. Life gets busy, and no matter how innovative the project may sound at the time, it’s not always easy to launch.  However, this was one project I didn’t want to see hit the wayside. 

So I started pondering how I could make this project work. My first step was to try and envision  how this game plan could fail, how I could take the failures and tweak them up so that they would succeed. The creator, a long time friend and mentor in the music industry, Jerrod Simpson, told me about the obstacles they faced when they originally tried to launch the song swap. I took all the insights he gave me and tried to see where I could make small, 1% changes that would make the song swap successful. 

This is how The Mix Tape Series was born. Twelve artists will cover each others’ songs, playing them live on WMNF 88.5 and then sharing the songs on a digital download. All in the name of ” Support Local Music. ” 

 This project is designed so that one  may get to hear a Reggae band out of Indian Rocks Beach cover a Country/Folk artist from Lakeland. Imagine someone covering your own song, adding new flavor and creativity to the mix. This organic mashup will only strengthen our local music community. It also will help bridge the gap in the community. When marketing music, we typically direct our efforts towards our friends and family, when in reality we should be targeting people who love music. This project’s main purpose is to help spread the wonderful tunes that grace the Bay Area and to help strengthen the only local radio station that not only supports all local artist but helps with educating the community on important issues. 

In the future, the project will evolve into more than just local bands covering each others’ tunes. I want the core of the project to reach each musician in town. I want to see more collaboration between local artists. Venues and music halls networking together. Agents and promoters moving forwards instead of backwards. The Bay Area can no longer be contained in a vacuum if it wants to succeed. 

Supporting each other goes a lot further that just liking or sharing a post.  We need to grow and learn from each other, that’s the only way the music will spread.  And we also need to stand behind the only local radio station that plays, supports, and encourages local musicians on a daily basis.

 All proceeds from this project will go towards WMNF 88.5. Each song from The Mix Tape Series will be broadcast live and then will be made available on a digital download after each band has hit the studio. 

would like to thank the following for making this happen Dustin Hapli, Jerrod Simpson, Live Music Showcase 88.5 , Grand National Championship 88.5, Musicians Wanted 88.5, Mighty Mongo,  Ben Bryan Band, Between Bluffs, One Mile Final, NoNeed, Oceanstone, Stick MartinBrian Sutherland Band, Jonnie Morgan Band, Josh & Jenny Higgins and Actual Bank Robbers

” The First Rule of Entertainment is Engagement. ” 
Bob Lefsetz 
Stay tuned on this project by following us at
The Mix Tape Series 


Best Regards 
John Sammel 


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