10,000 Maniacs' PledgeMusic.com crowd-funding campaign reached its goal Friday, allowing the band to independently release a new album entitled "Music From The Motion Picture."
According to Steve Gustafson, founding member of 10,000 Maniacs, the band went with PledgeMusic.com to fund the new album because it isn't currently with a record label and the crowd-funding campaign seemed like a better idea than borrowing money.
"Like any good campaign, it's little donations coming in, and we thank everybody for their support. A lot of people in Jamestown supported us, which we're thrilled about. So, thank you very much," said Gustafson.
Pictured is the cover for 10,000 Maniacs’ new album “Music From The Motion Picture.” The cover was created by Nathan Arnone, president of the Reg Lenna Civic Center, who also does artwork for Southern Tier Brewing Company. The album was made possible as a result of a PledgeMusic.com crowd-funding campaign.
The 379 fans who made a pledge on PledgeMusic.com to help the band reach the goal will be charged for the dollar amount that they chose. That money will be used to start manufacturing the album and the other merchandise that pledgers wanted.
Those who pledged at least $10 will gain access to a streaming version of the album on PledgeMusic.com, beginning on New Year's Day, and will receive a digital download shortly thereafter. Those who pledged $15 or more will receive a physical copy of the album after Jan. 15; while those who pledged to purchase a vinyl album will receive the copy sometime around March. And, the album will be in stores starting in mid-February.
What PledgeMusic.com did for 10,000 Maniacs was create an opportunity to independently fund an album and promote it without a record label. Throughout the campaign, anyone who was friends with Gustafson on Facebook received an update on their newsfeed that took them to the pledge page.
"PledgeMusic.com helps spread the word virally," said Gustafson. "For me it became quite a bit of work because I'm probably the most Internet savvy person in the band. So, it sort of fell on my shoulders to be the campaign manager. When I wasn't down at JCC, I was staying up late, making updates or putting video together with a couple of students, including Cody DeLong."
Although the PledgeMusic.com campaign officially ended Friday, the page is still available for fans to continue pledging to purchase the album. Ten percent of the pledges made after the goal was reached will benefit Women and Children's Hospital of Buffalo.
"We picked that charity because Dennis Drew really wanted to do it," said Gustafson. "Both of his kids were born very prematurely, and if it wasn't for Women and Children's Hospital of Buffalo, they would have had a very difficult life ahead of them."
There are also three tracks available to stream for free on the page, including: "When We Walked On Clouds," "Live For The Time Of Your Life" and "Triangles." Both new and previous pledgers will retain access to the exclusive content such as videos, photos and a blog that they unlocked. And, a limited number of the "Pledge Plus" items will still be available as well.
"A gentleman from Boston, Mass., who pledged quite a bit will get a private Skype viola lesson with Mary Ramsey," said Gustafson. "He will also get the deluxe autograph package with producer credit. Of course once we start manufacturing, we won't be able to add any more names. So, those people who were part of the pledge and stepped up to the plate for a big pledge will get their names on the album, not just as thanks, but as producers of the record."
"Music From The Motion Picture" is 10,000 Maniacs' first studio album since the band reformed in 2003. And, the band's last studio album, "The Earth Pressed Flat," was released in 1999. The current members of the band include: Jerome Augustyniak on drums; Drew on keyboards and vocals; Jeff Erickson on guitar and vocals; Gustafson on bass guitar; and Ramsey on viola and vocals.
"We're sort of rebuilding our fanbase," said Gustafson. "There are a lot of people out there who have 10,000 Maniacs records, but not a lot of them know that we're making a new record. That's because we don't have a record label, and we don't have a publicist - that stuff is long gone for us. For us, it's back to being independent again."
The album cover was created by Nathan Arnone, president of the Reg Lenna Civic Center, who also does artwork for Southern Tier Brewing Company.
"He is a talented artist and a good friend of ours," said Gustafson.
10,000 Maniacs will celebrate the release of the new album with live performances starting in January in New York City, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and other locations. The band currently has no plans for local shows other than the season finale of "Rolling Hills Radio" on Sunday, July 28, at the Chautauqua Institution Amphitheater.