ARTICLE: What Independent Book Publishers Can Learn From Alternative Music Publishing
Cool article where they compare Sargent House to Indie Publishing (Read Full Article)
Managing Bands For The Sake Of The Music
In 2006, Cathy Pellow saw that one her favorite bands, RX bandits, was nearing its demise. Frustrated by bad experiences with the music industry, the band was ready to throw in the towel and never look back. But Pellow, a big fan, didn’t let them. Instead, she started managing them, backed up by her production and work with Refused TV. Sargent House was born. And after RX Bandits, many more bands joined its roster.
But Sargent Houseis not just another label. As quoted in Wonka Vision, Pellow doesn’t think of Sargent House as a music label but “as a management company that has the finances and whereabouts to be able to help their bands become bigger and better, which, after all, is a manager’s job.” And instead of disconnecting this managing and nurturing from the process of making and selling records, planning tours, etc., Sargent House does it all under one roof.
Pellow said: “We do it all differently with the mindset that our bands are our partners and we all really believe in each other.”
To get a feeling of just how differently, check out their artists on sargenthouse.com.
Each of the artists has its own tumblr. From there, you can find out more about the bands and get links to their music. Typically, the artists have their digital music on iTunes, Amazon and Bandcamp. (they also offer vinyl and CDs, by the way)
iTunes and Amazon are standards. What is interesting, though, is that they use Bandcamp, and how they do it.
Free Full-Length Streaming Albums
One of Sargent House’s biggest names arguably might be Omar Rodriguez Lopez, the guitarist and mastermind behind the band The Mars Volta. While his band is signed under Warner Bros. and allows him to put out only one record per year, Omar Rodriguez Lopez has a special agreement with them that allows him to put out more stuff under his solo-name, independently of Warner Bros.
On his Bandcamp linked on Sargent House you can find 30 of his music albums.
And you can listen to all of them for free, full-length!
It seems to be a Sargent House policy to do it like this, for most of their bands have full-length streams out on Bandcamp.
You can listen to the albums as often as you like and then buy them, with one click, without registering, and get the download in MP3, FLAC, or “just about any other format you could possibly desire.”
Personally, I can only say that this approach + offering awesome music has made me excited again about buying digital music. Although I have released some of my own songs on Amazon Mp3 and iTunes, I never bought a single song, there… It just doesn’t feel right. There’s not enough flexibility. I don’t want to be forced into using the iTunes software or the Amazon MP3 Downloader application just to purchase a song,while wondering how/if your payment will ever reach the actual artist.
Nah. Bandcamp feels a lot better (purchasing is often illogical), so I buy my music there because I get to choose how I pay, what I download and of course, I get more than a measly 30 minute preview.
Sure, Bandcamp needs to stay alive, as well, so they take 15% off artists’s sales but it’s still less than what iTunes and Amazon takes.
Also, each band has their own page and design with Bandcamp instead of a few lines in some corporately designed store-front.