Nov 08

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The Bandcamp blog had a very candid conversation with John Beeler of Sufjan Steven’s label, Asthmatic Kitty, after the release of Sufjan’s very successful All Delighted People EP release through Bandcamp. It was refreshing to hear someone from Beeler’s position in the industry speak this way. From the interview:

Bandcamp: All of the tracks from this EP can be streamed in their entirety on Bandcamp – no 30 second snippets. Do you think you lost sales because of that?

John Beeler: No way. I think it really helped that people could stream the whole album. My personal theory is that people can stream anything in its entirety anyway; YouTube is essentially a giant on-demand playback setup ala Spotify these days. Type in a song and artist and bam – you’re streaming right away. The question for record labels and musicians is how far the buy button is from that stream.

I have been noticing the importance of clear communication between artist and fan lately. Asthmatic Kitty’s recent mailing list post is another great example of this. In it, they describe in very human terms what Amazon’s very low pricing of Sufjans full length release The Age of Adz means to both fans and the label. I recommend reading it yourself, as it is really the best way to understand the power of the language and tone.

David Bazan is also asking fans to help him make a record. Here is a great example of the kind of language I am talking about.

David is making a new album right now! The songs are all there, recording is underway! We are shooting for a Spring 2011 release. Barsuk gave him dough to pay for dudes to play on the record and some gear upgrades to make it sound great. But in order to focus his full attention on recording (so he doesn’t take three years like he did with “Curse Your Branches”) we need to keep him at home as much as possible until he’s finished recording the album. That’s a little tricky because a significant part of his income comes from touring.

Transparency is a word that gets thrown around lately without much meaning. As an Artist I think you can share as much or as little about your process as fitting for your artistic message. What is important, is that what you do share is clear, direct, and written like a human, not a PR company.

Treat your content with as much respect as your music, they are the same audience after all.

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Dec 15

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Everything Is Better At anythingbutmyspace.com

Author: drew
POSTED AT 11:12 PM

Potential fans today are more fragmented than ever. At Oniracom we believe that great content in as many places online as possible is important to provide little friction to any fans out there looking.

Everything is Better at johnvanderslice.com

If there is anyone that could change my mind about this it is John Vanderslice. Mr. Vanderslice had an Mp3 blog back when pitchfork was still a tool used on a farms. As he puts it himself his eviscerated myspace is probably my favorite designed myspace page out there.

This got me thinking about two things.

 

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Nov 18

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If you haven’t had a chance to come visit Oniracom, you should know that we can get pretty nerdy here. Even during our daily lunchtime gatherings where we tend to talk about other topics, we still end up talking about content management systems and the value of open source. This just happened the other day. The White House has just transferred whitehouse.gov to the drupal content management system. Sean mentioned that it is highly customized version of it, created with a lot of internal development. Hopefully they release a lot of their changes to help the community. We are a smaller shop though, and are better suited to outsourcing that work to a third party. We chose Expression Engine as our main content management platform. It is not a matter of which CMS is better, but what fits the needs of the project….

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Nov 11

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From the Basement

Author: drew
POSTED AT 08:11 PM

From the Basement is an amazing series of videos created by producer, engineer, and recent Thom Yorke bandmate Nigel Godrich. I have taken the liberty to watch pretty much all of the videos. Besides the videos you know you should see1, white denim was a band I hadn’t heard of, but is worth a watch. Their drummer is incredible, and their sound is familiar, but yet different. I don’t think that is even possible.

What makes From the Basement unique is that it takes a trend I have been seeing lately and gives it amazing production value. That trend is studios putting out video podcasts of artists who record there. Chasing the Moon is another great site that showcases San Franciscan artists. This is smart because we all know that studios are struggling from the availability of home recording equipment. This allows for studios to utilize the internet to have an audience. Studios could offer to make the video for free as a promotional incentive for bands, as long as the band agreed to being in the podcast. If the band liked it enough, and wanted to use it as a official video then some sort of fee could be in place to recoup the costs.

  1. If you want to know the other videos you should watch, ask and I will put them in the comments.↩
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