EDIT: Congrats to R. Stevie and the fans who contributed. The goal was met and exceeded! at $8368.00 . Congrats, fans and R. Stevie.
You did good!
Thanks to a reminder from Youtube user autosam I just found out that not only is R. Stevie Moore TOURING, he’s even coming close to my town! I cannot believe I will actually get a chance to see this guy perform. I never thought it would happen. You may either be familiar with him (yay you) or remember my mentions of him in my article about “Basement Music” a while back. And if you are not familiar with him at all, the best way to GET familiar with him quickly would be to go to the man’s site and get yourself familiar real quick. There is a LOT of history to catch up with. This guy epitomizes “indie”, the real word and meaning, not what has become the genre.
But even more important, and proven to be good for your general health and longevity*, is that YOU TOO can help make this genius’ tour happen through Kickstarter!
So do it! HERE … NOW.
He’s 68% of the way there already (as of this posting),
(update: 69% now.. good number, but 99 is a better number so get to it…if we can’t back this man’s tour, we can’t do anything)
so anything you can do, even if it’s just a buck or 2, will help take him to the goal and get him on the road. And there are a ton of great, personalized incentives. Got an extra 2 grand sitting around? He’ll play your “house, venue or roller rink”! R. Stevie at a roller rink, now there’s a Saturday night for ya. This man is so important to music, and this is his first real tour. I hope we see many more from him, but there’s always the chance that this is your only chance. So support his tour, and then go see him live. The Kickstarter page has a list of confirmed and tentative dates.
*actual improvements to health and longevity not yet demonstrated. Individual results may vary. If donations last longer than 4 hours, please consult physician.
It’s a short artist, producer or curator interview conducted via e-mail that can either be 6.9 questions answered through a single e-mail exchange or more conversationally through several exchanges, 1 question at a time. I’m having fun with it so far, I hope it’s entertaining and/or informative for you, the reader. I’m also proud that my first interview is with one of my favorite artists, William Doyle. He agreed to the conversational style, thankfully, and here it is…be gentle this is my first.
William Doyle is lead vocalist, songwriter (in his band, along with Ben Clarke-multi-instrumentalist, Michael Goozee-Bass, and Alex Urch-Drums-Percussion), and guitarist/keyboardist. Doyle and the Fourfathers are from Southampton and were formed some time after William’s debut solo work, Born In The USB (my pick for album of the year in 2009). The band’s debut full album release, “Man Made”, was released on Feb 28, 2011 and can be had by mail through Rough Trade(CD or Vinyl) or digitally through 7Digital, iTunes, and Amazon (and soon eMusic). They are touring starting at the end of March, supporting The Undertones through the month of April, followed by some summer festival gigs. Find more info on the tour dates here by clicking “gigs”.
Indie69 – As you know already, I was a big fan of your first release, “Born In The USB“. Looking back at that time, do you recall your expectations for the direction of your music career and musical style being similar to what they are now? Or did you see something different for yourself back then?
About six months ago, the traffic to this blog was about one tenth what it is now. That’s pretty rapid growth, at least in my eyes. And I never expected it. While this is not a commercial enterprise for me in any way, it still is nice to reach a larger audience than I expected. With this larger audience, I believe comes a responsibility and an opportunity. Not just for me and my little ideas and opinions. But for YOU.. if you make music and you want it to be heard. So, with this month, I hope to increase the frequency of posts here, from opinion pieces to mp3 previews of new releases. So if you have that great new track you want people to hear, send it to me. I’m looking for all genres, genuinely! But one area of personal interest is home recorded stuff. Basement music. But with a focus on the new. I don’t want the stuff laying around that you threw together on a 4 track back in 98. I’m looking for music that is dying out there trying to find an audience. The weird, the outsiders, the recluses, the obscure. I need your stuff. I’ll be out there looking, but I need your help as well. If you know someone who fits this description, send me a link. Or encourage them to put their stuff online. I’ll help if it’s needed. That’s not to say I won’t be looking for label stuff as well, I will. But I also want that stuff that hasn’t been found… yet. So if you know of anything you know I have not found already, send me links, tracks, contact info, bios, anything. Send it all to : email@example.com
Thanks to all who helped this month with the round-up post and the playlist. The feedback and suggestions have been great. And thanks to all the new readers who showed up this month as well. I hope I can live up to the new attention and deliver. The playlist should be ready by the 1st or 2nd. The roundup post a few days later rather than the middle of the month.
Here I present to you a guide to Basement music for the beginner or for the experienced listener who would like to disagree or help to make this work more complete and inclusive (within reason). Either are, of course, welcome to dismiss this as just another attempt to coin an additional, pointless label. Whatever the outcome, my intention is to simply bring more ears to the music itself. All other interpretations restricted, use only as prescribed. May cause bleeding from expectations. Reclusive, anti-social effects have been indicated in double-blind studies but do not necessarily represent a definitive medical condition.
I’ve posted a couple of examples of home-recorded (and mostly home recorded) albums that have risen above expectations in Another Day On Earth and William Doyle’s recent releases. But there’s an entire universe of what I will call (in the service of attaching labels where none are needed) Basement Music, to be sampled, ingested and archived. You’ve probably heard of what many call outsider music (Jandek, Harry Partch, Daniel Johnston, etc), but what I will call “Basement Music” ( not to be confused with the various companies, studios and services calling themselves “basement music…” ) is probably closer to a home-made, DIY, “maker” attempt at approximating something a bit more mainstream, even if only a little. Or at least an attempt to reach actual ears, which isn’t really fair to label as mainstream. That’s just past “not hiding from the world” , really.
Now, Outsider music is almost the same thing. But not quite, as it usually includes artists that employ no attention to home studio techniques and sometimes merely record with a cassette deck in the room with them. This, to me, is not Basement. I would say that for music to fall into this category, it must be created by an artist that is striving for something, with or without success. While a recording of one voice in a room could very well be interesting, it’s not Basement.
I find it still slightly difficult to use the label since so much of the music industry now (that matters) more closely resembles a cottage industry than a major machine. Many bands you would assume live a certain lifestyle or record in famous studios have simply invested in high end equipment and record right where they live, sometimes just beyond squalor. This stuff I will call “Basement” from here on out is a bit of a different animal. It’s neither outsider OR mainstream/indie. It’s that middle ground. Some would say maybe it’s simply the fact that not many have heard of these artists/bands. Perhaps. Or perhaps it’s the fact that these artists will most likely continue what they’re doing, recording and releasing albums and EPs no matter if you listen or not. And there’s something pure about this, to me. Something that’s been missing in music for the last few years. Doing it not necessarily for art’s sake, or for a living. Doing it simply because they must, passionately. This passion means that these artists sometimes work within limitations imposed upon them. These limitations can facilitate new discoveries, techniques and creative arrangements that would not be imposed upon the music in a less limited environment. Everything from fixed incomes and noise laws to limited hours of free time and even physical or mental handicaps can have an unexpected impact on the finished recordings.
In the words of Brian Eno, “‘Regard your limitations as secret strengths. Or as constraints that you can make use of.”
It’s also pure in the true sense of what music has always been. Back before lawyers (whom I do NOT hate as many people do, but rather associate with cowboys and hackers. They can wear a white hat and save your life or they can wear a black hat and destroy all that is good in the universe. But to call them all evil while ignoring a white knight such as Lessig is just ignorance) started hanging around campfires demanding royalties and peddling mandatory representation/protection schemes, music was made to be heard and to be shared, period. No business model was designed around it, no expectations of payment regardless of enjoyment existed beyond a scowl aimed at an empty hat and singing another person’s song or even changing the lyrics was a compliment rather than a rip-off or” lost” revenue. (to be lost, a thing must exist and be found somewhere, IMO)