Friday, January 14, 2011
I have had my brain on this for a couple days, thinking about how I wanted to present this topic. We can all make the argument that it is essential for artists, musicians and bands to take as much control of their careers as possible. I have written here before that within the context of the new music business paradigm, you must be DIY and that of course includes an endless amount of hats to wear. Technology has made it possible to record music on your own. The internet has eliminated barriers to distribution. So Jeff, what could you possibly say that is different? I BELIEVE THERE IS NO SUCH THING IN THIS BUSINESS THAT IS TRULY DIY.
Seems like a fairly bold statement to make, especially since I have been telling you to be as self sufficient as possible for months. If you are making music and or playing shows, you can't do it all yourself. I am not talking making music, getting it on the internet, getting a website, facebook, myspace, twitter, flickr, youtube channel, getting merchandise manufactured to sell at shows, rehearsing your ass off to have a great live show and on and on and on. I recently had a fan from my home town reach out to me on facebook. Just so happens that he designs websites. As all of you know, there has not been a gravitykills.com for quite some time so this infinitely cool person asked me if he could create a new site for the band. Yes, I could create a wordpress website for Gravity Kills and if needed I would certainly move forward with that but it would not represent the band in a way that Kurt, Doug, Matt or myself would be happy with. The point is that if you take the time to create real relationships with fans, they might actually help you. Fans want to help. They want to be part of the process. They want to take ownership in what you are doing. They want to get on the carnival ride with you. Martin Atkins preaches of this all the time. If you are touring, you might actually find fans that will let you crash at their house. I am not saying to take advantage of people. The second you do is the second that you have lost a fan and lost the other possible fans that they might evangelize to. We don't live in test tubes and don't exist in vacuums. Continue to be as DIY as you can possibly be while knowing that it takes fan relationships to start building the tribe and to really take your business model to the next place. Outsource to your fans. Make them part of your daily band business and you won't feel so fucking crippled by the amount of work that you have to accomplish in the new 2.0 world.