Dan Bull is a prolific gaming rapper from the United Kingdom. He is regularly contracted by the video games industry, particularly Electronic Arts, to make songs and music videos about their new releases, for promotional purposes. He’s also a staunch supporter of an open Internet and more sensible copyright enforcement, particularly more fairness for Youtube content creators.

He’s also a pretty cool guy.

Dan was introduced to me through a mutual friend, Dave (“Boyinaband”) and asked me if I could help him refresh his website. It had some additional features and things that he needed, and he wanted to make the design look a bit more contemporary.

We chose a theme he liked, and I configured the layout and added his signage and incorporated his branding styles. He also wanted to have clearly featured Social Media links, better linkage with his discography, particularly to his Youtube content (one of his revenue streams is the advertisements that play before videos), as well as links for where people can purchase his albums; although he does make it a point to make all of his content available to listen to, for free, online.

I also had to wade through about 27,000 pending comments, over 95% of which were spam. Thankfully Akismet handled the vast majority of it!

The Discography section was a fun bit of theme-hacking: Each discography had links to third-party places where you could purchase the album. I wanted the styling to be consistent across all albums, so I created a custom template for both album listings and track listings, and used custom fields to set the purchase links for each platform. The pages were arranged hierarchically, with a single page for the album, and then individual pages for each song. I customized the track and album templates to display the full track listing for each album.

We also incorporated Google Analytics more closely with the website’s functions, and added some GA Events to album purchases, so he can track conversions on the website, since those purchases are made on third-party properties.

In Dan’s own words:

Aaron Hill is as enthusiastic as an enthusiast, and as professional as a professional.

If you don’t know how something works, he will explain it to you and if you can’t do it, he will do it for you!

– Dan Bull