Making it in the Music World 2012

Getting discovered and making it big in the music industry is every band’s dream, but achieving this goal is not always easy. It takes excessive dedication, hard work and love for what you do. Now the big question is to be signed – or not to be signed – to a label.  Check out my interviews with three very different, but very similar Canadian youth bands on their journey to being discovered.


Sharmaine & Luvena- Classically trained sisters Sharmaine and Luvena Kwong started making music together 15 years ago, when they were just little girls sharing the family piano in their Coquitlam home. With over 1 million views on their YouTube channel, an endorsement deal from Daisy Rock Guitars, and selection as one of 30 finalists in EMI Canada’s “Get mobile, Get discovered” competition, these girls are ready to sweep you off your feet.




What Fools-Originally a three-piece instrumental band, then an alternative rock/funk band, What Fools were formed by four guys who enjoyplaying music together. Despite only having been together a year, they have nonetheless developed a recognizable sound and a multitude of catchy songs. With influences from jazz to modern rock, this is definitely a group of guys you don’t want to miss.



Tommie Smith- Dynamic sister duo, Ike and Marvin, started working together after Marvin received her first guitar and discovered an old Beatles album. Having been compared to the likes of Adele and Joss Stone, these girls want to inspire, change and revolutionize by making listeners into believers. Between two guitar chords and a notebook full of lyrics, they will always tell you, Keep the Dream Alive!



VG: How long have you been playing/singing together?

Sharmaine & Luvena: Three years as a duo. What Fools: A year on March 8th.

Tommie Smith: Four years now.

VG:In three words or less, describe your musical genre to Vervegirls.

Sharmaine & Luvena: Pop/rock.

What Fools: Spicy rock.

Tommie Smith: Passion. Soul. Inspiring.

VG:Who are some of your musical idols?

Sharmaine & Luvena:

Stevie Nicks, Beatles, Taylor Swift, Avril Lavigne.

What Fools: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Arctic Monkeys, The Notorious BIG. Tommie Smith: Beatles, Prince, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan.

VG:Do you feel it is still necessary to be signed with a label in order to be successful in the industry?

What Fools: No (we’re playing hard to get!).

Tommie Smith: Being an independent artist is more difficult, but if you really want it, nothing is going to stop you from reaching your goal. VG:Making it in the Music World 2012 What has been your greatest success so far?

 Tommie Smith: Being on a future EMI compilation, and being a finalist to win a recording contract.

What Fools: Recording some singles with Juno-winning producer Ken Friesen.

VG:What has been your greatest struggle in building a strong fan base?

Tommie Smith: With so many great bands out there, it’s hard to get noticed. You have to be unique to stand out above the crowd, and that is what we are trying to do!

VG:What is the funniest fan experience you have encountered so far?

What Fools: The first show we played, we went on immediately after an incredibly loud and bad death metal band. It was awkward for everyone involved.

Sharmaine & Luvena: This past summer, we released our first CD of cover songs, and at one performance, a lady that had been watching us turned to our mom with a confused look on her face and said “these girls are singing . . . why are they selling a cup of tea”? She had misheard “cover CD”.

VG:What is your ultimate goal? Where would you like to see yourselves in the next 5 years?

Sharmaine & Luvena: It would be amazing to release our own album and tour across the country.

VG: Based on past experiences, what advice would you give to any bands/groups trying to make it in the industry?

Sharmaine & Luvena: Take every opportunity you can get to perform. Performing is a great way to gain new fans and to network with other people.Be careful when some people say they can help you get signed, because sometimes these people are scams. We know what we’re talking about!

VG:Give us a song you think Vervegirls would like.

 Sharmaine & Luvena: “My Turn to Leave.” It’s a great song to listen to if you have gone through a rough break-up.

Tommie Smith: “Genuine.” About finding something real and true in love!

What Fools: “Barking Dogs,” “Short Lived Time”

VG: How can we find out more and follow your band?

Sharmaine & Luvena: Twitter: @sharmaineluvena

What Fools:

Tommie Smith: Twitter: @marvinandike