Holy Cow : Amanda Palmer raises $1.2 M on kickstarter but won't pay her musicians!
#31
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #31
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chrisso's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
What the hell, it's an opportunity for that many more people to get an audience they didn't already have. No one's being screwed if everyone's happy with the deal.
This is the argument used by club promoters to not pay bands.
Forget McCartney and Stipe, are you happy that any band includes some people being paid, while others are not being paid, when they are both doing the same job, playing an instrument to entertain the audience.
#32
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #32
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drBill's Avatar
 

You play, you should get paid. End of story.

For those volunteering for free...well, best of luck to ya. You'll probably NEVER get paid. For those in the paid band helping rehearse the NON-paid volunteers....you should be ashamed. Degrading the profession that is worthy of much more than just a working wage..... I'd quit and work in a local top 40 band before going to that level.

So sad.....



But not that surprising. If you value your art...don't give it away.
1
#33
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #33
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Greg Curtis's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
don't think it's particularly the norm to pay people for sitting in for a couple of songs in a set.
What the hell, it's an opportunity for that many more people to get an audience they didn't already have. No one's being screwed if everyone's happy with the deal.
Of course everyone is happy: Amanda gets a free band, Amanda gets more audience members, the club gets more patrons without having to spend a dime, the extra players get to go to a rehearsal in the afternoon for free and then play a gig that evening without getting paid. How awesome is that!

In this scenario the "free" musicians allows Amanda to make (a lot) more money, give the individual clubs more money (more spectators at the door and swilling beer). the musician is allowed to do this for them. What a f'n privilege.

Pretty sad that this supposedly professional forum advocates performing for free for a group that is earning money and a club that is making money off of their talents. I have a big problem with that, obviously.

If there is commerce involved, all performers get paid. Period.
#34
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #34
3 + infractions, forum membership suspended.
 

I'm a pretty good pleyer of the old recorder. Does you think she will be leting me up on stage with her and this bandade
#35
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #35
I can't imagine she's rolling in the dough. The alternative would probably be more like just don't use any strings or horns. And there's no one making anyone do this. I just don't get the problem. I have problems with things are forced on people against their will, like piracy. Things that people do voluntarily, that only affect themselves, is their business. There's no way it can hurt the industry, because no one has to do it unless they want to. They may well consider it a lot of fun and well worth the effort. They may consider the improved chance of getting laid well worth the effort. I doubt anyone is planning on doing it 40 hours a week.
#36
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Roddey View Post
I can't imagine she's rolling in the dough. The alternative would probably be more like just don't use any strings or horns.
Which is fine, it's what everyone else does.
Lot's of duos around with no drummer for example.

Quote:
There's no way it can hurt the industry, because no one has to do it unless they want to. They may well consider it a lot of fun and well worth the effort.
And no one has to play a venue for free if they don't want to, and yet the industry struggles to make sure promoters pay, because it's the right thing to do.
Look, it's a lot of fun being a guest on Letterman. And you get to plug your book, or tour, or movie....... but the show still pays you a fee.
That's the way our culture has evolved, but now apparently if it's fun and is an opportunity..... don't expect to be paid.
Thin end of the wedge.
Audio X
#37
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #37
Audio X
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Roddey View Post
I can't imagine she's rolling in the dough.
Her husband is pretty wealthy and donates to the church of scientology.
Neil Gaiman - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

You'd think they could cover the expense..
#38
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #38
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I just don't get the mindset. As a bandleader, would you feel OK taking home money every night from a gig, and you didn't pay the band?
1
#39
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #39
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ionian's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
Exactly. The people who insist that the world go back to 1985 are the same people that hate that Amanda Palmer is successful. You shouldn't find a way to be successful today, you should rant on the internet about why you are being treated badly.
You can't actually believe what you're saying, can you?

I'm ranting against her. And I'm successful and I actually make a pretty good living solely from music so I'm not bitter or jealous of her. I Know what I'm ranting against - I'm ranting against the fact that she is capable of setting a precedent.

And that in fact, just happened - sort of.

A friend of mine who plays bass for a known artist, who for the artist's sake shall remain nameless, but nevertheless he's much bigger than Amanda Palmer ever will be, he just told my friend at a rehearsal last night, "You know, she has a pretty good idea there..." And went on to explain that it never dawned on him to use fans to pad out his band so he could have a larger band without paying them.

That is exactly what I am ranting about and against. Success has nothing to do with it. Once the first person does it, it becomes easier for the next. And if the artist my friend plays for is already entertaining the idea you can bet others are as well.

I have a lot of friends who make a living playing horns / strings / winds / etc. that can be affected by this. Some friends that are already struggling somewhat. I'd hate to see the opportunities for my friends to make a living start drying up because artists think those positions can be filled with unpaid fans instead.

Try to think a little bigger then simple jealousy next time.

Regards,
Frank
#40
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #40
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Here's a quote from her accounting of her $1,192,800 album/tour budget:

"i have to pay the VISUAL artists who joined this amazing art party. i commissioned them all to paint their art, they own it. i’m only BORROWING the art for the art gallery tour — and using the “likeness” (the digital copy) for the album/book/etc. packaging – and then returning the art to the artist to keep. still, i paid them all. add another $20-25k there. i feel very good about giving them all that money."

So...
1
#41
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #41
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I had no idea who this person was, but reading her accounting of where the $1.2 Million went is informative. *She obviously thinks her fans are idiots, and reading the comments it seems they are.


-Recording the album, paying her bills and loans off. 8 months living expenses: $250,000.
-Pressing 7,000CDs: *$105,000. ($15ea)
-Pressing 1,500LPs: *$30,000. ($20ea)
-Print 2,000 art books: *$80,000 ($40ea)
-Jacket design: *$20,000.
-100 art books: *$30,000. ($300ea)
-100 USB turntables, painted: * $15,000. ($150ea)
-1,200 7" records, 300 LPs, 1200 art projects: *$30,000. ($20ea)
-Loss on 3 "not sold out yet" art shows (in cities where her gig is sold out): $10,000. ($3,300ea)
-20 round trip flights: *$10,000.
-Visual artists for the art shows: *$25,000.
-Amanda and her staff commissions: *$150,000
-5 music videos: *$100,000. ($20,000ea)
-Amazon and Kickstarter fees: $100,000.

TOTAL: * $955,000

$1,192,800
-$955,00
=$237,800 left over.

Some pretty bizarre numbers up there. Anyone know what it really costs to press CDs these days? Press 180g vinyl? Cost for a catastrophic evening reception at a gallery that can hold 125 persons?




(Sent from my iPad)
#42
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #42
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drBill's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Curtis View Post
I had no idea who this person was, but reading her accounting of where the $1.2 Million went is informative. *She obviously thinks her fans are idiots, and reading the comments it seems they are.


-Recording the album, paying her bills and loans off. 8 months living expenses: $250,000.
-Pressing 7,000CDs: *$105,000. ($15ea)
-Pressing 1,500LPs: *$30,000. ($20ea)
-Print 2,000 art books: *$80,000 ($40ea)
-Jacket design: *$20,000.
-100 art books: *$30,000. ($300ea)
-100 USB turntables, painted: * $15,000. ($150ea)
-1,200 7" records, 300 LPs, 1200 art projects: *$30,000. ($20ea)
-Loss on 3 "not sold out yet" art shows (in cities where her gig is sold out): $10,000. ($3,300ea)
-20 round trip flights: *$10,000.
-Visual artists for the art shows: *$25,000.
-Amanda and her staff commissions: *$150,000
-5 music videos: *$100,000. ($20,000ea)
-Amazon and Kickstarter fees: $100,000.

TOTAL: * $955,000

$1,192,800
-$955,00
=$237,800 left over.

Some pretty bizarre numbers up there. Anyone know what it really costs to press CDs these days? Press 180g vinyl? Cost for a catastrophic evening reception at a gallery that can hold 125 persons?




(Sent from my iPad)

Looks like some pretty creative accounting going on there.... If the IRS got hold of that, they would tear her a new one... Her cost for pressing CD's should be less than 10% of what she declared. Oy!
1
#43
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #43
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chrisso's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Curtis View Post
I had no idea who this person was, but reading her accounting of where the $1.2 Million went is informative.
-5 music videos: *$100,000. ($20,000ea)
Unbelievable.
Coincidentally, half an hour ago I happened to be reading about the new reality of music videos on a DSLR forum.
The blog was written by the lead singer of a well known, signed band. He talked about making videos with a $100,000 budget several years ago.
The budget for their latest video? $8,000. He says this is normal.
This is a well known signed band mind you, not someone crying poor and making videos with fan donated money.
Maybe Palmer should make a couple of $8k videos and save everyone $12k in the process.
#44
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #44
Wow, we've spent pages and pages and pages complaining about how the current situation has driven everyone to cut back on everything, and lower standards and quality. Then she spends some actual money and now she's wrong for not doing it on a complete shoestring budget?

I'm getting a little confused here. Are we now arguing that this new paradigm is right, and everyone should be living in their parent's attic and cutting their own videos on a laptop and making CDs with a single shot burner or something?
#45
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #45
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Lower standards and lower quality of art really have nothing to do with budget. Sure for some great things you NEED some amount of reasonable budget, but creative and driven people with find a way to work within these natural limitations and create a piece of art that is better for it.

Sounds like Amanda P. And her peeps are doing a lot of different stuff with that $ than investing it in the art.
#46
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #46
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Look, it's a lot of fun being a guest on Letterman. And you get to plug your book, or tour, or movie....... but the show still pays you a fee. That's the way our culture has evolved, but now apparently if it's fun and is an opportunity..... don't expect to be paid. Thin end of the wedge.
But, wait, these people weren't expecting anything. An offer was extended and they accepted it. You and I are generally on the same page, but I can't get your point here. There are those things that are forced on people against their will and against the law, and there are those things that they choose to do and that only affect them. What people choose to do is none of our business, as long as it's not illegal. This is not illegal, or even unethical since it's purely voluntary.

It's not the thin end of anything. It's just people wanting to do something fun, or people who think that they may have some useful advantage from doing it. No one has to do it if they don't want to.

Hell, I'd do it if I was a half way decent string or horn player and not scared to death of playing in front of people. No one could make me do it again if I didn't want to. And there's no way the core musicians are ever going to do it, so I just don't see the problem.

Let's not create problems where they don't exist. We have real problems to deal with.
#47
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #47
Quote:
Originally Posted by abechap024 View Post
Lower standards and lower quality of art really have nothing to do with budget. Sure for some great things you NEED some amount of reasonable budget, but creative and driven people with find a way to work within these natural limitations and create a piece of art that is better for it.

Sounds like Amanda P. And her peeps are doing a lot of different stuff with that $ than investing it in the art.
Yeh, you can live in a grocery cart if you want, and maybe you'll still make some good art. But that's not a goal in life. This thread keeps making me think of the line "And the trees all kept equal, by hatch, axe and sword." If she got a million dollar advance from a record company she'd be condemned for that as well I'm sure. It's not like that money wouldn't have come out of the pockets of music consumers.
#48
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #48
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I think its cool what she is doing, inviting musicians onstage with her. Great, its not like she offered to pay them then didn't. The thread title seems a bit misleading. I guess its all were one puts the majority of value.
1
#49
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grawk View Post
Takes credit cards, provides bandwidth, provides legitimacy, and helps build things for other people to use to. Why not use kickstarter? Why not give them more legitimacy. She's not generally in the business of fundraising, and they are. They provide the infrastructure for a modest fee, and using them brings publicity to less famous folks too. She'd even helped fundraise for other MUCH smaller projects. And their cut is a ****ton less than Roadrunner's.
I still don't really get it.

The reason Amanda got what she got was because she already had legitimacy.

She paid them over $50,000 because they take credit cards? That doesn't seem like a modest fee to me. I could create 10 albums for less than just that fee (not as awesome as Amanda's probably, although I've never heard any of her music).

I just don't see what they really bring to the table unless it's advertising, which I don't believe they do.

The only benefit I have seen is that apparently there are some people who actually peruse Kickstarter and contribute to people's projects even if they haven't heard of them before. If that's true, that's pretty amazing.

What percentage that is though, I don't know. From what I've read so far, seems you have to have a lot of friends and family and fans already. And you have to do the work to get them to contribute.
#50
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #50
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chrisso's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Roddey View Post
I'm getting a little confused here.
Not confused at all.
She's cut back by not paying some of the musicians onstage.
What is confusing about that?
#51
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #51
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chrisso's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dean Roddey View Post
But, wait, these people weren't expecting anything. An offer was extended and they accepted it. You and I are generally on the same page, but I can't get your point here.
My point is simple and I've repeated it several times.
Thin end of the wedge.
Once you stop paying musicians because they want to be onstage with you, or because 'it's fun', then there are many more employers who would be happy not to pay musicians.
Like i said, look at late Night With Letterman, or Tonight with Jay Leno.
The exposure from being on those shows benefits the individuals, and the guests would do it for nothing, but the shows still pay them.
Audio X
#52
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #52
Audio X
Guest
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Curtis View Post
Anyone know what it really costs to press CDs these days?
Yes, one dollar each ($1)
If it's the fancy mutl page book cd's .. they top out at $2.
www.discmakers.com
Quote:
Press 180g vinyl?
$2.50
Rainbo: CD, DVD & Vinyl Record Manufacturing

These prices are for 1000 and drop the more you order.
cuckoo.old
Thread Starter
#53
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #53
3 + infractions, forum membership suspended.
 

Thread Starter
Found a couple of quite articulate comments which I think have some validity, and say things far better than I can.

Quote:


Dear Amanda,

Please come play at my house. I'll need you to furnish a stage, sound system, provide for ticket sales and advance publicity, and guarantee that you sell at least 2000 seats. Also, I'll need 50% of your merch sales. And I can't pay you. Because it's a privilege to play at my house. Not everyone gets to do it.
+1 of those stupid Facebookie like things here

Quote:
Chris Buono · Top Commenter · Video Stunt Guitarist at TrueFire

While anyone wishing to participate can do so by their own free will, there's too many instances.
where someone is dangling the "exposure" or "for the good vibes" trip for not much, if anything, in return. It's all too accepted that musicians/artists should continually work for free to "climb the ladder" or just do it for the art or hugs and/or high-fives. **** that noise. The bank who holds my mortgage wants cash or check every first of the month and could give a shit about "merch." We need to jump on every opportunity that comes our way to squash the notion this is OK. Maybe the intentions are pure here, but when you flash your headlights to the world exclaiming you're a crowd-source-made millionaire you're going to get scrutinized at every turn. If you spent the dough already on whatever and didn't budget for performance compensation in real world denaro then you need to fire your business manager and accountant pronto and at the same time keep your clothes on next time and not flaunt your shit if you can't manage it properly.
#54
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #54
Allons-y
 
Batchainpuller78's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
Unbelievable.
Coincidentally, half an hour ago I happened to be reading about the new reality of music videos on a DSLR forum.
The blog was written by the lead singer of a well known, signed band. He talked about making videos with a $100,000 budget several years ago.
The budget for their latest video? $8,000. He says this is normal.
This is a well known signed band mind you, not someone crying poor and making videos with fan donated money.
Maybe Palmer should make a couple of $8k videos and save everyone $12k in the process.
Isn't this kinda the same for albums? There are people recording albums for a lot less than what was once the going rate..
But if you have the resources you can spend anything you like even with donated money, if she wanted to make a video on 35mm film on location on every continent well it will cost and why not?
#55
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Curtis View Post
Same thing happening here with me.

Except, I want to add that as a horn player I've done many a gig as a last minute or planned fill-in for national touring bands/groups, and I've always gotten paid. Sometimes really well. But always more than I'd make with a local band. Even had to wear a stinky ill-fitting red blazer a few times, but that group paid **really** well.


Sent via iPhone/Tapasquawk
Ha! That brings back funny memories. I used to fill for one of those travelling 50's revivals, and it was always pretty obvious how far the gig was from laundry day. They'd wash those blazers once every few weeks, whether they needed it or not.

But yeah, the pay was good. Afternoon rehearsal at scale, then gig pay at over scale.
#56
17th September 2012
Old 17th September 2012
  #56
Anytime you are told that you are "getting great exposure" in lieu of compensation, you are getting ripped-off and you are establishing that your price for your services is $0.00.

How much is a 10% raise on free? Oh yeah....


I worked with an "indie" that did the same thing with their friends and hangers-on; the "privilege" of working the door, the merch table or "stage managing" for nothing; you get to tell everyone that you were part of the event AND you get no money, nor free merch; I spoke up about how unfair this is and I no longer work with these folks.

Look, how many threads exist on this board where we're telling a burgeoning mixer/recordist that doing free demos in the hopes of landing bigger contracts never works out; we read these stories all of the time; "I tracked demos for a band as a goodwill gesture and they went to another studio and paid that guy instead" or "A band I was recording for free left with the tracks and is paying another studio to mix them" and the like.

You should be compensated for your work; I won't play for free with acts that are local to me; why in hell would I play for free with someone that is somewhat established?
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