In January, I received some really cool news: I was selected for a showcase at the Americana Music Conference in Nashville this coming September (Wed Sept 16 at 8:00 at The Basement, if you'll be there). This was extra-cool news because it's a difficult festival to play, even if you have a record deal. In fact, every artist I've ever seen play there has had a record or distribution deal of some sort. So it's a huge honor to have been chosen as a completely independent artist. I thought I had plenty of time to get a new record together for the September show. I've got tons of material, and I'm still writing new ones. But somehow, we're approaching August, and I haven't recorded anything.
My, how the year goes by.
It's great to have a deadline though. I work well under pressure, and my best work (at least in school) has always been under procrastinating circumstances. Why spend two months on a project, when you can spend two days? It's a matter of economy of time.
Anyway, I've got plenty of material, -- am sorting through about 30 songs that I'm mostly satisfied with -- but I'm determined to finish a few more songs before tomorrow morning when I start recording scratch tracks. I'm also determined to finish the record in no more than five days of recording. You know, just know what you want and play it right the first time.
Making a CD is terribly expensive, despite the advances in technology. And I'm terrified of spending more money. I canceled my label deal just before releasing WEST 28th STREET and self-financed the whole CD. That is a really scary thing for someone who is most definitely not independently wealthy. It's also not a wise investment, considering the state of the music industry.
I keep dwelling on the fact that even if I somehow magically got free studio time and didn't have to pay my musicians (as if), it still costs over $2500 just to print the CDs. Then factor in all the promotional CDs -- there are 350+ Triple A radio stations alone -- and it's pretty much a losing battle. But NOT making a new record is NOT an option.
Hmmmm ... how did I end up on the subject of financing a CD? Maybe I should be begging those of you who burned a copy of my last record from your friends to maybe at least purchase it from iTunes? Or at least don't balk at a $5 cover charge the next time you go out to hear live music...
Or if you steal my music, maybe at least buy me a drink? Or offer me a free massage? Or whatever it is that you do?