Pledge your support to Black Tape For A Blue Girl on Patreon; get all access to our new music
SHORT VERSION: If you enjoy Blacktape’s music, want exclusive access to unreleased new work,
and can pledge $2 or more a month, please become a patron of my art.
Watch the video & pledge at: https://www.patreon.com/blacktapeforabluegirl
Hello, I’ve discussed here on the Projekt eList — and my Facebook page — the dramatic changes that have swept through the music business in the last 15 years. Only a few artists I know survive off their art. Most of us have day jobs, music is something we do when we can find the time. My day job is running Projekt Records (working with the artists, doing graphic design for the covers, product management as the CDs are manufactured, communicating with my distributors and press contacts). Hey, I’m not complaining, it’s a pretty fun job. I work for myself, and I’m involved with music every day.
The label began as a vehicle for my music, Black Tape For A Blue Girl. For twenty-nine years, I’ve been releasing ethereal, gothic, & darkAmbient albums. But we’ve only released two CDs in the last decade; the problem really is that the day job takes up all my time and I don’t get into the studio to create. I want to get back to the way it was in the 90s when I was a musician who ran a record label, instead of being a guy who runs a record label who occasionally has time to make music.
I’m asking for your support to make this possible.
Albums sell a fraction of what they did at the peak of the music industry, back when Remnants of a deeper purity was released. Even with the dramatic decline in sales, I realize people still listen to a lot of music; there’s so much available at our fingertips. For most people, their preferred price point is FREE.
There’s not much financial support for creators within “free.”
That’s a big problem in the system. Legally and ‘illegally,’ it’s easy to find music that you don’t have to pay for. But all of us artists deserve to be fairly compensated for our work. It takes time, energy, and passion to create music. And there needs to be return on that time spent, in orders for creators to keep creating. We live in a world of real things… like rent. Our landlords don’t take high-fives and MP3s of our latest song as payment. : )
And honestly, I don’t want musicians to be hobbyists. I want it to be their full-time job. As I wrote here on the list, last October, “I don’t want my favorite artists to be amateurs. I really want to live in a world where artists can focus on their art… Think about it! It’s a very weird world where the-average-joe expects to be paid for their labor, and yet people are generally OK with the artists they love working some other job so music can be their hobby.”
Yet I realize I’m a hobbyist. In 2015, a band like Black Tape For A Blue Girl, with years of history, doesn’t sell enough CDs and downloads to pay my living expenses, let alone support five of us. My “real job” keeps a roof over my head, and pays for my son’s ice hockey & my cat’s medicine.
I’d rather spend my time making music; it’s fun and challenging and interesting.
I’m beginning to see a solution that makes it possible.
Crowdfunding seems viable to me. It’s a direct connection to those who love my work. Plus crowdfunding has been so rewarding to me; not just monetarily, but on a personal level. When I did the Remnantsvinyl Kickstarter back in 2013, I loved posting updates, and private messaging, to keep you up-to-date on the status of the manufacturing. In the process, I learned more about you: the people who love what I create. It feels good to talk with people who are excited about music. Invigorating. In my line of work as Projekt’s label manager, I spend a lot of time looking at what has been lost over the years, and too little time thinking about what draws you to music, and excites you about we create.
Wayne Dyer says, “What you think about expands.” I reflect on this often, try to stay positive, and focus on the good things. Thinking about what’s possible is much better than dwelling on what can’t be done. Either strategy solidifies the reality of that particular perception of the situation.
Oh, got a bit off topic. Let me reel it back in…
I’m recreating the sort of exchange that happened during the crowdfunding of Remnants, and evolving it into an ongoing experience. I’ve started a page on Patreon to immerse you in my work: get access to my music as it’s evolving in the studio. Patreon allows YOU, the patron, to support ME, the artist, so I can dedicate more time to writing and recording songs for you. This really makes sense!
“Patreon is empowering a new generation of creators to make a living from their passion and hard work… Over 125,000 people have become patrons of creators on Patreon, paying them over a million dollars every month. Their patronage takes the form of a recurring pledge – a promise to pay creators per work or per month. The sum of these ongoing pledges constitutes sustainable, reliable salaries for professional creators around the world.” (from a blog on Patreon)
This is a return to the patronage system. But rather than one King, there are many Kings who support my music.
You are the new Kings.
In the last 24 hours, 20 patrons have signed on to support me! $189 expands my thoughts about my goal of setting aside more time to work on music. As more pledges come in, I have more impetus to take off from work to make music.
Your recurring monthly pledge of $2, $5, $10 or more gives me the freedom to follow my muse.
Patreon is different from Kickstarter. Rather than providing one-time support to fund an object such as a CD, you’re giving ongoing support. The money goes towards a sustainable, reliable salary (which I’ll use to cover my living expenses, plus wages for my bandmates when they join me in the studio, gear repair, plane tickets, out-of-town studio sessions, etc).
You’ll get exclusive access to Black Tape For A Blue Girl in the studio:
* private posts featuring work-in-progress
* behind-the-scenes videos
* revised versions of new songs as additional instruments are added
* tracks that otherwise would never be released
* early mixes of songs from older albums
* live recordings
* and my updates in the activity feed (where we chat and you meet a community of other Blacktape fans)
Thanks for your interest in supporting me. This is how to make a difference in 2015!< Watch the video and make your pledge to help keep the music flowing. Thanks!
PS: Even if you cannot afford to pledge today, it would be incredibly kind and helpful
if you share the link on your Facebook, Twitter, etc. Thanks.