Remember last year, when I put Toyshop on sale for $1 in an attempt to get out of debt? It did some good– word got out, people who had never heard of me discovered me, some people really chipped in and helped out. But, I am still in debt, and extremely underemployed. I am looking for work right now, but in the meantime, I have to get this thing paid off.
So I present to you, Get out of debt sale part 2: Deep discounts on song commissions.
Have you ever commissioned a piece of music before? Hired an artist you admire to write a song for you, according to your specifications? Doesn’t that sound cool? Now’s your chance!
Commissions are usually pretty expensive, because they require so much attention and creativity from the composer/songwriter. But in an effort to raise money to pay off my album loan, I am going to offer them crazy cheap, for a limited time only.
Have you seen this commission I wrote? A generous fan offered me a $1000 donation to write a song called “Kelli’s getting Vaginal Rejuvination.” Here was the end result:
It actually ended up becoming a really popular song. Wish I’d had the commission in time to include in on the album. Next time! (If you like it, you can download it here.)
$1000 is actually a pretty fair price for a commission. But from now until February 28th, I’m going to offer song commissions for…..
Wait for it…
You see, my monthly payment is $126.83. So I’m charging that, plus I added on 10% to help with the extra costs: PayPal fees, interest, sending things in the mail.
Here are some reasons people get commissions:
- Gift for a loved one
- Having your own poem set to music
- Having your favorite poem or text set to music
- In memory of a loved one
- Song to cover in your own performances
- Just because
Here’s how it works: send me your request. It could be a title (like Kelli, above), a theme, your own lyrics, whatever. If you have ideas about how you want it to sound- fast, slow, major, minor, dorian, whatever- that’s cool, too. I’ll write something, make a live recording of it (a studio recording would send the price through the roof) on my high-quality Zoom recording, send you an mp3/wav/whatever you prefer, and the lyrics (if I wrote them). Can also do a YouTube video as above if you like.
My skills: I am an excellent singer and songwriter, an OK acoustic guitar player, and a mediocre pianist. So I’ll assume most of these to be voice-guitar songs, but let me know if you prefer piano and I’ll see what I can do. Of course, if you cover the song yourself, you can play it however you want.
I’ll try to have a fast turn around time on these, but as creativity can be tricky to tame, I ask that you give me a month just to be sure. (If you need a rush order, let me know and I’ll try to work with you.)
The fine print:
I retain the rights to the song. Since I’m an indie artist, I have control over my songs, so as long as that’s the case I’ll be happy to grant you rights to perform and record them and use them in your student films. But that might change some day (probably not, but who knows). So technically, I own the rights to the song. And you can’t sell downloads of my song for money (I can, though), but if you made a cover version, I would (assuming I’m still independent) be cool with you selling that for money.
I don’t promise that your song will be available for commercial release, on an album. If I make another album one day, and it seems like the song would go well on it, that’s a possibility. But no plans to do that so far.
I will do my best to make you happy, but I can’t positively guarantee satisfaction. I might be able to tweak things, but I won’t make endless rounds of edits.
I reserve the right to reject projects, like if you have some crazy racist hateful stuff you want set to music, I can be like, no dude.
Alright, so let’s see what we can come up with!! I look forward to creating with you.
Photo by valkyrieNYC.com.
Sometimes you write blog posts that are like articles, sometimes like press releases or mail blasts, and sometimes like a diary/casual update. I’ve been doing the two former lately, so I’m taking a chance to do the latter-most.
Here’s something cool: the website WomensRadio.com is offering a FREE mp3 download of Monica’s Getting her Tits Done! They have this cool thing called FEMMEP3 where they offer free weekly downloads (WITH permission- all legal!) of music by women. They asked if I’d like to participate and what song I’d like to offer. I really didn’t know, but at least Monica has the double-benefit of having the catching title and also just being a song that people really like. Go check out what they’ve got. Also- SO SWEET of them to put my name in the title of the article, right next to Royal Thunder! I feel special *blush*
Speaking of DJ’s being so sweet to me, Richard Lionheart of Lionheart Rock online radio show discovered my music via Twitter and has been just promoting it with all his lion heart! He’s played a lot of my tracks on his show, and even talked on the air about how I’m selling my album online for $1 to pay it off. The show is based in London, and Richard’s been bugging me to come over and do the UK summer music festivals. What do you think? I must admit most of my good press has come from England. :) Anyways, Richard has shows at 5pm on Fridays (indie bands are on around 6:30-7:30) and 7pm Sundays, all Eastern time. His sets are really good, classic rock and obscure indie bands, my two favorite things besides opera!!! To listen, go here and select the second station, XLMAX.
My band’s goal for this winter- after the music video was done- was to set up a “local tour” for ourselves, try to play back-to-back shows in Jersey, Long Island, maybe CT or Philly, and of course Manhattan and Brooklyn. But you know how scheduling goes. By the time I got ahold of everyone to get their conflicts, it was so late in the game that it was getting hard to get bookings in the ballpark of where we wanted them. What we DID get is a date in Hoboken- wooo, Jersey debut!!!!! We’ll be playing The Whiskey Bar on Wednesday, February 23. I’m excited because I actually do have a lot of friends in Jersey, and they usually wuss out about coming to my NY-centric shows, so maybe now that I’ll be in their neck of the woods we can all have a big party. Oh also they pointed my towards one of the local radio stations, who mentioned me maybe doing an on-air interview. I hope it pans out, i LOVE doing that stuff!!
Still working on booking other areas- slow going with Long Island and Connecticut, starting soliciting places in Philly today. Saving Manhattan and Brooklyn ’til later, as that’ll be easier because A. there are SO MANY PLACES and B. we have connections here so we can always get something when we need.
As for the $1 “sale of desperation,” it’s both working and not. The ways in which it is working: a bunch of people who knew me and/or my music but just hadn’t bought the album yet did come through and buy it. I had a few generous contributions. A lot of people retweeted my article on Twitter and I reached some new people that way. The ways in which it isn’t working: Even at $1 people haven’t been beating my door down. Haven’t gotten (or really pursued) much media attention (unless the Glen Ellyn News printed my press release and my parents didn’t notice cuz I never told them to watch for it). Actually, have not sold a single album for $1 yet. Don’t think I’ve sold one for less than $5.
Of course, I think this has a lot to do with HOW I’ve marketed this. I’ve mostly been focusing on the “help me get out of debt” aspect of thing, rather than the “omg only $1″
aspect, and hawking at people I already know who needed to buy the album anyways instead of strangers (friends of friends, media, etc). So I’m going to try changing strategies. Once I’ve finished soliciting people I already know (which I’ve been doing in waves), I’ll turn to focusing more on the “OMG this is only $1 tell everyone you know” angle, and see what happens with that.
This is reminding me of what I should be doing right now besides blogging. I guess I have time to do a few more chores before bed. Hugs!