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Saturday 31 December 2011

2011, an interupted year

Well, here we are at the end of 2011, and firstly I'm going to look back at my predictions from January and point out that I got 3 out of 4 right (shame Northampton couldn't do the business or I'd have had a full set).
Having had this kind of success rate I'm not going to make any predictions again and refer to my previous good results forever more. Forevermore? For evermore? fuck it, you know what I mean.
It's been an up and down year, starting on a low with the closure of the record label which, in retrospect, definitely had a bit of a downer on the music side of things. This wasn't helped by the decision to move house and the effect of a falling market dragging this out for three months. Still, we've been moved in for 3 months now and things are going swimmingly so, work aside, things have picked up at the end of year.
Having had a bit of a haitus on the creativity side I'm hoping to start writing and recording again in the new year, so keep an eye on the site for updates and occasional splodges of music. Hopefully we can get back into some regular gigging too.
2012 is going to be an interesting year away from the music as well. In the UK we have a barrel of financial regulation coming that's going to have quite an impact at work (with a potential knock-on impact on my free-time). In Europe we have a bunch of bureaucrats driving an agenda that's sole purpose is to prolong their pet project rather than benefit the citizens they're supposed to be serving (how long will people put up with that?). In the states we have an election year and, as soon as the holidays are over, we're going to have SOPA and PIPA to deal with (if these bills get passed the internet could look very different by the end of the year).
So I've come up with a cunning plan to deal with it all. I'm going to hide in my house, rugby club and local pubs with a selection of instruments, booze and friends and ignore the whole bloody lot.
Beer, music, sport. Repeat.
Happy new year!

Thursday 1 December 2011

Name your price!

All our music is now available to download on a Pay What You Think It’s Worth* basis.

Over on my YAMDAC blog I’ve been harping on for a while about alternative business models for musicians and how the biggest challenge for an amateur musician is not piracy but publicity, so I’ve now decided to put my money where my mouth is and try one of these alternative models for myself.
For a long time the gatekeepers of content have tried to force the prices of digital content to match that of physical copies but it just doesn’t make sense. So what is the correct price for a download? Well, I guess it’s what the market decides is the right price. You’re the market, this is a chance to help decide.
So as of today all our music downloads are available on a Pay What You Think It’s Worth* basis (including “Free”) from our Bandcamp site**.
Personally I’d rather that more people heard and enjoyed our music than that we extract every penny from anyone who might like it. So please feel free to pass this on to anyone who you think might enjoy it (in fact, please please do that!) or anyone who writes / talks about music and the music business and might be interested in the experiment.
I put “Free” in inverted commas because if you go for Free then I’m going to ask you for an e-mail address and add you to my distribution list. You can opt out at any time and I don’t e-mail much stuff out anyway, I reckon that’s a fair trade.

N.B. the physical cds remain at fixed prices I’m afraid, because they cost a fixed amount to produce and I have costs to recover. If you download the stuff and then decide that you’d like one of the CDs (plenty of EPs left, a couple of handfuls of the Album) then I will happily knock off anything you decided to pay for the download.
Similarly if you’ve previously paid the full rate for the download and are now feeling ripped off (I really, really hope there aren’t many people in this category!) then drop me a line and we’ll see what we can sort out. I mean this, I’d hate for someone to be sitting there thinking that I’ve pulled a fast one on them.

* there is no good acronym for this.
** I’m working on setting up the same mechanism on other platforms.