Hello again everyone, I hope your 2012 has kicked off well. It seems to have brought with it ridiculously strong winds in the UK, and many other parts of the world. So watch out for flying debris if you’re out and about. I’m writing today to share a plan that’s recently formed in my brain and also ask for your feedback.
In my recap of 2011 I talked about my desire to do more music this year, and also find a way of generating income from it. I don’t want or expect to get rich from music but I am considering ways to make a modest sustainable income. I’ve thought about this a lot in relation to my band 20lb Sounds over the last 18 months. I came up with very rough plans for subscription fan clubs, crowd-sourced tours, merchandise and much more. None of them have yet come to fruition but hopefully they still will. Leaving the band to one side for now though the new plan is fairly simple.
I’ve long threatened to complete a full length album but as yet I’ve failed to do so. Since I was about 16 I’ve made vague promises (to myself and others) to record and release more songs. There’s one problem with this though, I am a TOTAL perfectionist. Ridiculously so. Getting material together that I am both confident in and happy with hasn’t been easy. No longer though. The new idea is to record an acoustic album using just my Zoom H4 portable recorder and a couple of microphones. No overdubs, no extensive mixing, no effects, just live performances. If you’ve heard my acoustic tunes on Rathole Radio then you’ll get the idea. I might bring in a piano and my harmonicas but crucially it has to be stuff I can perform on my own, in one take. That’s the golden rule.
I have a list of 22 songs, only one of which is a cover. It’s a good base of material so if I can’t get 10 or 12 decent songs together there’s no hope for me. I plan to get this recording done in the next week or so and I’m actually rehearsing for it now. The burning question is what to do with it once it’s completed.
In the past I’ve released everything free (in both senses) and I still intend to do that wherever possible. I will use Creative Commons licensing but I might invoke the non-commercial clause, which has long been a dilemma for me. I can’t help feeling that if I really want to make some money out these tunes I will have to keep at least some of them paid only. All this pre-amble leads me to some discussion points I’d like to get your thoughts on:
1. Firstly, would you be interested in this live acoustic album?
2. How would you feel about me using a non-commercial license? I’m thinking CC BY-NC-SA which is common for music. I know some people have idealogical objections to this but it seems the most viable approach.
3. A redesigning of danlynch.org because it’s never really grown the way I envisaged. The blog is about the only thing I use so maybe it should be the heart of the site. I could then out-source the music stuff to Bandcamp. A lot of my favourite independent artists have already done this.
4. I’d like to make physical versions of this album. CD’s are easy but I’d also like to investigate vinyl pressing. Would anyone be interested in those things? If so, what do you think is a reasonable price? I’m guessing some kind of pledge bank scheme will be needed for the vinyl to get it up and running.
5. I’m looking at using CD Baby to get my music onto iTunes, Amazon and other places. Does anyone have experience with this or perhaps a better solution? I’ll also look at Google Music if I can sell stuff outside the US.
Anything else you want to comment on or suggest please go for it. Use the comments on this post to keep it all central. Thanks!
That’s enough for now I think. I have a lot of rehearsing and arrangement to do on these songs. I’ll keep you posted on the progress.
Speak to you soon,