24-year-old Colin Tracey is one of the most promising up-and-coming indie musicians right now. His music has garnered a solid niche following on Spotify, currently sitting at more than 35,000 monthly listeners. New Ways to Miss You, one of his top tracks, is just a few thousand short of 700,000 total streams.
Releasing self-written, self-produced bedroom-pop under the alias Comfort Club has lead Tracey to be featured on a large roster of official music playlists, such as Spotify’s undercurrents. One of the top breakthrough platforms for indie artists, the playlist has a following of as many as 220,000 users at the time of this writing.
Comfort Club is also featured on Fresh Finds: Indie, fuzzy, Summer Chillout, and The Picnic List, all editorially curated playlists with a collective following of more than a quarter-million users.
To set the record straight, landing yourself a spot on such playlists as an independent musician is not an easy task in the least – in fact, for Tracey, it took “3 years of consistently putting out music and working my booty off” to land his first editorial playlist feature.
“It’s a process that is as involved as you choose to make it. Putting music out can be as simple as clicking one button and uploading it to all the streaming services. Getting it heard is kind of the hard part”, Tracey mentions in an exclusive Q&A with Student Press.
For Comfort Club, the social media platform Tik Tok was perhaps the greatest vehicle of promotion. Tracey regularly posts short, entertaining clips related to his music, whether it’s giving an insight into the production process, explaining the lyricism, or just comically highlighting the frustration of staying unique in an oversaturated market.
Tracey’s most viral moment was when he discovered a way to secretly communicate with his followers through a cheeky Spotify artist photo hack:
Today, the clip sits at nearly 400,000 total views, and the track featured in it, Colin’s very own Ok on My Own is now his fourth most popular music release.
“I think it’s a million times easier to be a musician now. Having people be able to listen to your music at any time because of the internet is invaluable. Now that we’re in the internet age and people don’t need to buy a CD to hear my music is such an advantage. It would be virtually impossible for me to reach as many people as I have. I’m grateful to be an indie artist now instead of ten years ago.”
Further detailing his experience with using social media platforms such as Tik Tok as tools of artistic promotion, Tracey also mentions the possible negatives that come with failing to meet your audience goals:
“It’s a tough one for sure. It has the potential to help you grow your audience but I think there’s an underlying factor of expectations and the feeling of failure if you’re not growing. I think I’ve noticed how often I’ll feel discouraged and think my art isn’t good when in reality it just isn’t reaching people because of algorithms. I wish it didn’t have that effect on people, but I’m guessing that a lot of people go through the same thing as I do.”
But Tik Tok has proven to be more than just a business tactic for the music of Comfort Club. Along with Zoom and Instagram Live, Tracey regularly hosts online concerts for his followers, as a way of not only raising awareness of his music and sound but to cheer people up:
“The virtual concerts are fun for me. I have a fun setlist and try to hit on all the emotions in one show. My goal is always just to make people feel something. If I’ve done that, I’ve succeeded”
Check back later for our full Comfort Club artistic profile, in which Colin details the inspiration behind his music and stage name, offers an insight into his production and writing process, and reveals plans about his upcoming music.
Permanent, the new single by Comfort Club is available here.