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Late Tuesday night, local indie Ameri-fusion band “The Sandusky’s” announced their intentions to record a new album at a local studio in March. It will be the band’s third release, and the working title for the new album is Here With Me. They have decided to fund the project with the new online threshold pledge system called Kickstarter.
“We’re really excited about this one,” says lead guitarist and songwriter Butch Frankenfurter. “We think our first two albums are good, but we really let the material come to us this time, and we hope our fans think it is worth the wait!”
When asked why they decided to use Kickstarter to pay for the production of the album, Butch explained, “A lot of bands around the country are using Kickstarter to fund their projects now. Kickstarter has really taken off, and a lot of bands that we’re friends with, and a lot of the bands we listen to have used it successfully. I mean, what’s better than guilting your fans, friends, and neighbors into giving you money?” Butch jokes. “Actually we’re going to be offering some really cool incentives for folks that pledge, so we hope for it to be a really fun process for everyone involved.”
When asked how The Sandusky’s funded their first two albums before the advent of Kickstarter, Butch explained, “Well, our first album Built For Speed we did in the drummer’s basement. We took a bunch of carpet remnants out of the dumpster of a local carpet store to deaden the concrete walls, and then borrowed various pieces of recording equipment from our musician friends around town and paid a sound guy from a local venue here $50 and a 12 pack of Pabst to engineer. It was a little crazy, but it worked out just fine. The second one we all saved up money collectively until we had enough for some studio time. We also recorded part of it at the local university. We simply asked if we could use one of the music department’s practice facilities after hours, and they said ‘yes’.”
And so why did they need Kickster for their third album, if they figured out how to make the first two without up-front financial help from fans and friends?
“Well, we really want this third album to be special, and a label has never really been an option for us, nor is it really for anybody these days. Don’t get me wrong, we’re proud of our first two albums, and we hope that the heart and songwriting shined through some of the lower production value, but this time we want to make the album we envision in our heads. We hope our fans will help us do that.”
Another local band “The Brittons” are also planning to record a new album soon, and have decided not to use Kickstarter for funding.
“I just can’t justify asking people for money for something I’m going to do on my own anyway,” explains The Brittons’ drummer Ed “Gonzo” Johnson. I mean, do The Sandusky’s have cable TV? Do they all have the latest iPhones? How much money do they spend on beer? I honestly don’t know, but I have trouble holding a cup out asking for donations and asking our fans to do the hard part for us when it has always been our responsibility. Making music is not a right, it is a privilege. You want to make an album? Tighten the belt. If you believe in the music, it’s worth sacrificing for. If it’s not worth sacrificing for, it’s probably not worth being made. That’s my 2 cents.
“I mean, I got no problem with the Sandusky’s,” Gonzo continued. “We let them borrow some of our gear to make their first album, but that’s another thing. Instead of spending a bunch of money on a studio, why not just spend that money on gear you’ll still have the next time you go to record? The technology you can get at home now is the same in the studios pretty much.”
When asked what The Sandusky’s would do if the Kickstarter fails, if their 3rd album Here With Me would ever see the light of day, Butch assured, “Oh of course. We will probably go back to begging and borrowing gear and space, and just like our first two albums. And hopefully the songs will still shine through.”
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