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Luke Oxendale of Riot House: ‘We Believe That Artists Should Hold the Power to Their Music’

On January 26, the Riot House, a collective for alternative music lovers, announced the launch of its new Nashville-based creative hub. Inspired by the successes of 615 House, a content studio housed within Classic 77 Creative Co., the Riot House is already in the process of amassing success stories of its own with viral content created by and for emo fans.

Learn more about the Riot House with contributing writer Cynthia Gross, as she connects with Luke Oxendale, a member of the collective’s leadership team, including what differentiates the Riot House’s efforts from others within the saturated digital space and why he believes D.C., Maryland, and Virginia artists should consider exploring partnership opportunities with the organization.

Press Photo - Courtesy of Riot House
Press Photo - Courtesy of Riot House

Pop punk music is alive and well. Just ask mainstays like Avril Lavigne, Travis Barker and Blink-182, Green Day, and My Chemical Romance. In fact, some argue that there has been a resurgence of the genre in recent years. This is specifically what prompted mix engineer, producer, and editor Luke Oxendale and the rest of the Riot House leadership team to establish the collective.

“The recent resurgence of pop punk in the mainstream left a gap between older fans of the genre and newer fans just discovering the scene,” said Oxendale. “We want to create music and content that bridges that gap and caters to all fans of the alternative scene.”

Additional goals of the collective include providing a space for artists, producers, and content creators to collaborate with like-minded individuals, promote their music to a wider audience, and learn and grow within an environment that holds them accountable.

In addition to Oxendale, key members of the Riot House leadership team include Matt Bacnis, team lead and creative director; Adam Mitchell, producer, audio engineer, and musician; and Luke Bodine, content director, writer, and self-described “idea guy.”

Musicians, influencers, and fans of alternative music (pop punk, alt rock, emo, metal) from across the country can leverage their value with the Riot House through TikTok duets, partnerships, use of music and sounds, and in-person collaboration in the studio. Creatives can also apply to join the Riot House as a permanent member by submitting their music and social media assets for review by the team followed by a series of test shoots.

Benefits of becoming a guest or permanent member of the Riot House include connections to influencers in the music scene, cross-promotion of original music, access to Classic 77 for content creation (for permanent members only), and eventually, live show, endorsement, and merchandising opportunities.

“Each of the members of the Riot House bring such uniqueness to the table and the combination of their talent is what makes this unlike anything on the internet,” said co-founder and team lead Matt Bacnis. “The fact that alt/emo/pop punk is more alive than ever is so exciting for someone like me who grew up on this sort of music and the fact that we can be a part of this new wave has been one of the best things ever.”

Only about a month into its launch, the Riot House has a growing number of success stories to its credit that demonstrate the power of the emerging community. Chloey Wilson of Nashville duo LXIX, grew from 700 to over 20,000 followers on TikTok since the launch of the Riot House. The collective also has the backing of notable artists and brands in the scene, including State Champs, Sueco, Good Dye Young, Simple Plan, and Knox.

Photo Courtesy of Riot House
Press Photo - Courtesy of Riot House

At its core, the Riot House seeks to empower independent artists to take control of their creative careers based on a recognition of their untapped potential and strength of being in the driver’s seat. When compared to major labels, independent labels and artists are gaining market share increasingly. According to an MIDiA study published last year in Billboard, the market share of independent artists jumped by 9.2% to 43.1% in 2021, equating to an additional $2.1 billon – and it continues to gain ground.

The Riot House equips independent artists and industry professionals in the alternative scene with the know-how needed to manage their assets effectively outside of the confines of a major label.

“Every current member of the Riot House is an independent artist, and that is very important to us,” explained Oxendale. “We believe that artists should hold the power to their music, and our philosophy is that Riot House is ultimately here to lift artist’s personal music careers up. Not the other way around.” 

Riot House Logo
Riot House Logo - Courtesy of Riot House

When asked what is on the horizon for the Riot House and how D.C., Maryland, and Virginia artists, specifically, can benefit, Oxendale shared that the future reach of the collective spans city and state lines.

“The long-term vision for Riot House is to grow the brand large enough to expand further than just online content creation,” said Oxendale regarding potential opportunities with the DMV scene in the months and years to come.

“We would love to be able to create Riot House tours, collaborate with festivals in the scene, and potentially even venture into creating a record label around the brand. Since we are only a month in, we are still very eager to find people from around the country to make these bigger ideas a tangible reality.”

Whether you are a fan of nostalgic early 00’s emo, or the music or up-and-coming pop-punk artists, the Riot House has a place for you. Follow Riot House for future updates here, and consider applying for membership to the collective today.

Cynthia Gross

Cynthia Gross is a freelance writer and award-winning spiritual pop artist based in Maryland. With more than a decade of experience as an executive ghostwriter, she understands the power of each individual’s voice to create positive, meaningful change.

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