Last weekend I traveled to New York to perform one song, the first dance, at a friend's wedding. I took the opportunity to pack five years' worth of missed visits into about 14 free hours the Friday before the wedding. Over the course of what I had dubbed The Apology Tour of Williamsburg, I was able to spend a few hours with Eric Ambel, who produced my first three records and whose album, Lakeside, was one of my favorites of last year. We talked mostly about guitars and the possibility (inevitability?) of war, but we also talked about whether or not I would make another record. I told Eric the same thing I'd told anyone else who had asked the same question: I'd written 40-some songs over the last five years, about a dozen of which I thought were pretty good. I wanted people to hear those songs but I didn't have a budget, I didn't have a label (despite a very positive conversation a day prior), and I wasn't exactly in a position to fire up a Kickstarter or PledgeMusic campaign. Being a musician was no longer my full-time job, and it had not been for some time. I had no idea what would be next.
As I wandered through the nearly unrecognizable neighborhoods I'd spent so much time in just a handful of years ago, as I celebrated my friends' marriage and heard two hundred people shout along with my own voice and the digitized voices of the artists they love, it occurred to me that while music may no longer be my profession, it remains the one thing I do best. While I don't know to what extent I'll ever do it again, while I may have squandered that opportunity, I did not forfeit the right to do what I can, when I can, in whatever way I am able.
So before I'd even landed in Portland, I'd contacted a few friends I've been playing with out here and said, "Let's start to make a record. We can work between jobs, off-hours, whenever. There's no money now, no label now, no tour, but maybe there will be. Maybe not. Maybe we'll only finish one song, maybe we'll finish ten. We'll send whatever we've got to X and see what happens."
So that's what we're going to do. As I said, Kickstarter and Pledgemusic are not options for me. Bandcamp offers subscriptions so, if you'd like to pay $5/month, I'll share what I can. Demos, rehearsals, updates, b-sides, unreleased songs, a free download of Sideways, streaming access to the live recordings I've posted, whatever I've got. I have no idea what will happen but at least a few people have expressed interest in being involved with whatever that may be, and how they can contribute. This is how. If you're not interested, I get it. This is what I can do, for now, until I figure out what's next.