Yesterday I talked about the 1,000 True Fans essay. Then I shared the story of how I’ve put that theory into self-publishing my CorelDRAW Unleashed books. Today I want to share the story of a band who can count me as one of their 1,000 True Fans and how they have done well without a major music label.
The band we’re going to talk about is Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers. They started out as The Refreshments and their debut CD, Fizzy Fuzzy Big & Buzzy, was a big hit with fans. The second CD, The Bottle & Fresh Horses, didn’t sell very well and the band felt the marketing by their label was to blame. If you’ve seen the King of the Hill TV show, you are familiar with The Refreshments as they did the theme song.
After those first two CDs, the band changed their name to Roger Clyne & the Peacemakers and they have put out their own music since then. The third CD since the name change, Americano, was their best in the opinion of many fans. In fact, the CD includes a DVD of them making the music. When it comes time for some of their concerts, they promote them and sell tickets via PayPal. By taking out the middlemen, the money goes directly to the band. I’ve been to several of their concerts and they are a blast.
Already, you can see they’ve built a nice fan base, sold them music and concerts and done quite well. Which brings us to their latest batch of music. Early in 2008 they rented a house in Mexico to be their temporary recording studio. They planned on recording eight songs in eight days and called the sessions Turbo Ocho. Each day a short video was posted of the previous day’s recording. At the end of the sessions, they put on a concert for 500 of their fans where the new songs were debuted. Unfortunately I missed that concert.
Now they are about to release a new CD with these new songs. But before they do that, they are selling them online to their fans. The price? Whatever you want to pay! Some of the fans will pay a lot to get the songs right away and there will probably be some who don’t pay at all. Admittedly I paid a lower price as I plan on buying the CD (with accompanying DVD) as soon as it is available. If you want to check out their music, this is a great way to give it a try.
Obviously most of you are in the business of creating artwork, not music. I just wanted to pass along this story as it may give you ideas on how you can build your own network of fans for your artwork. I wish you the best of luck!