I’ve gotten myself all wound up over the discovery that there are bookmarkletsavailable to enable otherwise disabled downloads on Soundcloud tracks. Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but aren’t most Soundcloud users independent artists? If they choose to disable downloads, but enable streaming, aren’t they doing that for a reason? Isn’t it worthwhile respecting that, especially since they’re not getting major label funding?
According to some of the comments posted after mine, apparently not. The general gist seems to be that people don’t care – they want a marriage of convenience and not having to pay for something. I never thought I’d get sucked into the recent debate provoked by the honest post by NPR intern Emily White (about her 11,000 song library and how she only paid for 15 CDs in her entire life), but I inadvertently did. The conversation over the Soundcloud bookmarklet is but a microcosm of a greater discussion. Have you taken the time to read any of it? Cracker’s David Lowery provided what was probably the most thoughtful response. Many others followed, ad nauseam: 1 | 2 | 3 | etc.
There’s no point in sugarcoating this. I’ve seen my own enthusiasm about being a musician start off a raging torrent, and dwindle down to a nearly dry stream. Years of gigging with One Drum, De La Buena, Sindoolaa, and Urban Empress & the Urbanites took their toll. I no longer want to play for an audience, and instead long for long hours spent working on songs in the studio. Flip side? I need to pay the bills. Independent musicians typically only make residual income on recorded music, unless they get lucky and sign a sync licensing agreement to get their songs into TV or films. Thankfully, I have skills above and beyond being a musician. Had I put all of my eggs in one basket, I would be in a terrible place. I consider myself lucky.
The Kickstarter project to fund my debut album is a success, with 189 backers pledging $5,732! Essentially, the project was overfunded to 114% of my original goal! This generous outpouring touches my heart, and I thank all of my supporters. I am eager to continue this process, and I will be scheduling time to record musicians in the coming weeks.