THESHADOWBOX.NET

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

Amanda is making Art with your support on Patreon. Join become a patron and help AFP make ALL THE THINGS.

Pages: 1 2 [3] 4  All   Go Down

Author Topic: The Grand Theft Controversy  (Read 8954 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Mitholas

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 108
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #30 on: September 16, 2012, 10:38:55 AM »

I think the idea is that, to be a musician who can live off their art, you need to work towards that. Part of working towards that is doing things that pay little or nothing. You build a name for yourself. You are your own brand, and that brand is something you can monetize more and more as time goes by.

Amanda might not be a millionaire, but I don't think she currently falls in the struggling artist category either. Why? Because she worked long and hard to build her fanbase. Even if Amanda never has a song featured in a TV show to blast her onto the collective radar (like Imogen Heap had going on with Hide and Seek), she has a solid base of people who will buy just about anything she puts out. How did she get there? By doing a bunch of things, often for free, to build up a base of contacts to start making great music and get into clubs so she could promote their music and... I don't think I need to sum up her history as an artist.
Logged

Paul Jon

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 252
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #31 on: September 16, 2012, 01:20:27 PM »

Would Amanda have been employing "struggling musicians" if she had followed another "business model" I wonder? Or would it have involved the usual hierarchies being activated to bring in those already towards the top of those hierarchies? As usual it's vested interests complaining: you know this because they are the ones with most access to the media. At least when the Luddites wrecked machines at the start of the industrial revolution, it was because if they lost their livelihoods they would actually have seen their families starve to death in the streets, whereas when Metallica et al. complain about "theft" they are at risk of losing nothing but the loss of their baths that they can play baseball in, as the song says.
Logged

Morpheus Laughing

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1115
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #32 on: September 16, 2012, 07:19:05 PM »


Also, I could I just take this completely off topic moment to say to Morpheus Laughing - I've always found your posts to be really well-thought out and interesting. Sorry if my response above is a little off, I've been awake for about 23 hours and I'm starting to decline. Why is it that you don't often post around the lower boards? Is it because there's usually far less intellectual discussion down there or are you only really here for the music?

Thank you. 

Your response actually describes my general view of arts and volunteering. I ended up with 2 years of paid employment because I assisted someone (who was also volunteering) to produce a promotional poster. It didn't even occur to me that I might get a job offer...

I don't post much in the lower boards because I know that I use the Internet as a way to procrastinate. I should really post much less on these boards too but I have a hard time resisting these types of topics because of the relevance to what I have done and might do.etc.

For instance, I'm actually going to be involved in a "hospital foyer" gig in a couple of weeks and at least one local musician will be paid to curate and participate in it. I'm actually volunteering for that (bass guitar). I can see that this kind of thing might eventually have more funding thrown at it if the scheme is shown to enhance the "hospital experience." I'd advise artists and musicians to look for opportunities in this increasingly popular idea of art/music as being therapeutic because charities and  government (UK at least) are starting to embrace it.     

Music, and indeed art in general, sort of fall outside of that, though, since no one really gets into them with the intention of making a living, unlike with taxi drivers and the like.

A taxi driver I know said that he decided to be one because he loves driving and likes the social interaction. It also promised a degree of freedom and flexibility that many jobs don't have. I was actually in a band with the guy and he gave me lifts to practice, which I thought was kind of amusing. I'd never say that he'd compare his enthusiasm (for the perks of the job) with a musician but I can allow myself to imagine that he might. I think Taxi drivers are different to musicians in another way though: the job is quasi-public service and plays a role that is not so closely tied to personal indulgence as the arts. A shortage of taxi's at fair prices would be disruptive and arguably even cruel for many in a modern society, which means that regulations for working conditions and wages becomes a necessity.
Logged

Astica

  • Ghost
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Female
  • Posts: 3612
  • Purportedly decadent.
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #33 on: September 17, 2012, 02:24:06 AM »

I don't believe that it should be the expectation that musicians and artists are not paid for their work, and the romantic inclination that making art is not a living is a sad current state of things that should be changed, in my opinion.
I don't mean to imply that it should be, but it is, and while it is, there are artists who would work without pay for things like Amanda's tour fairly happily. I agree with Mitholas, a lot of it is just building yourself up as an artist/musician/whatever, and being prepared to put yourself out there with more abstract rewards when you're new and unknown.

Morpheus Laughing made another good example where he got a paid job from something he volunteered for. I'm in a similar position at the moment where experience I got volunteering at a festival has helped me with a regular paid job I'm in the application process for (but have not necessarily gotten ;D ) which adds a whole extra layer to this in a job market where demand outstrips supply in most sectors. Being able to advertise yourself as a musician who played with Amanda Palmer and the GTO could be something to boast about when applying to play at all sorts of other things.
Logged
Quote from: Indja
I mean really, my sins are my own - i don't wnat some cunt to swoop in and wipe the slate clean. it is my fucking slate. fuck offf.

Quote from: N.U.
Tricorns are fuckbanana awesome.

faninor

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 27
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #34 on: September 17, 2012, 03:03:40 PM »

This whole controversy reminds me a little bit of something from The Simpsons:

Quote from: Dental Hygienist
Here's a free tooth-brush! Keep those teeth clean!

Quote from: Bart
So you're saying I should do your job, for you, at home, for free? You wish!

Amanda Palmer has always offered an interactive fan experience. It's one of the reasons I love her. It's one of the only reasons I kept following her career for the past few years (apart from just a few songs, Evelyn Evelyn, Ukulelehead, and AP Goes Down Under never quite caught my interest).

I would never want her to do away with the interactive experience and crowdsourcing just because we already gave her a million dollars to fund her album and tour.
Logged

Miss Sahara

  • .............
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1009
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #35 on: September 17, 2012, 04:28:04 PM »

Being able to advertise yourself as a musician who played with Amanda Palmer and the GTO could be something to boast about when applying to play at all sorts of other things.

...this wouldn't be any different, if it was payed...

Logged

Mitholas

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 108
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #36 on: September 17, 2012, 05:24:33 PM »

^Yeah... except that Amanda doesn't necessarily have the money to pay everyone. Meaning that if she HAD to pay everyone, she would end up not inviting people to join her on stage and therefore they wouldn't have that opportunity.
Logged

CeeGBee

  • Too o-o-old to rock & ro-o-oll, but too young to die...
  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 18563
    • Facebook, website, what's the dif?
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #37 on: September 18, 2012, 01:10:34 AM »

^Yeah... except that Amanda doesn't necessarily have the money to pay everyone. Meaning that if she HAD to pay everyone, she would end up not inviting people to join her on stage and therefore they wouldn't have that opportunity.
Ummm...  Don't look now, but she raised ELEVEN TIMES her projected need....
I'm not after her to release her tax-returns or anything, but sorry, but somewhere
north of 5x, the "we can't afford that" argument starts to lose credibility for basic
touring needs like, say, musicians to play the music.
Logged
Is it bad that what she said made perfect sense to me?

Mitholas

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 108
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #38 on: September 18, 2012, 08:21:17 AM »

Ummm... Don't look now, but the girl also has to eat, drink, pay bills, pay loans, ... Traveling with half an orchestra isn't just "basic touring needs". Basic touring needs for Amanda has always been the few essentials required to play her music. She tours with an electric piano and some essential band and crew members. All of which already costs a lot of money. Adding a bunch of musicians to that, all of whom need to be fed and kept, would increase the costs immensely. Taking on that many people extra is a big endeavor and a financial risk. As she doesn't have a record label to back her up in any way, I think people need to stop assuming she has tonnes of green in the bank so that she can just do whatever and not have to seriously consider this stuff. I think people greatly underestimate what everything from recording to manufacturing to touring costs these days.
Logged

CeeGBee

  • Too o-o-old to rock & ro-o-oll, but too young to die...
  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 18563
    • Facebook, website, what's the dif?
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #39 on: September 19, 2012, 01:17:51 AM »

Ummm... Don't look now, but the girl also has to eat, drink, pay bills, pay loans, ... Traveling with half an orchestra isn't just "basic touring needs". Basic touring needs for Amanda has always been the few essentials required to play her music. She tours with an electric piano and some essential band and crew members. All of which already costs a lot of money. Adding a bunch of musicians to that, all of whom need to be fed and kept, would increase the costs immensely. Taking on that many people extra is a big endeavor and a financial risk. As she doesn't have a record label to back her up in any way, I think people need to stop assuming she has tonnes of green in the bank so that she can just do whatever and not have to seriously consider this stuff. I think people greatly underestimate what everything from recording to manufacturing to touring costs these days.
She's always done all of these things... eat drink etc.  Managed to get herself, Brian (or the band)
from here to there, put some sort of roof over the collective heads, and food on the band's table,
and never with anything remotely close to the resources she has now.  What do you suppose she'd
planned with $100K? Surely  SOME SORT of tour, no?  Now add an additional $1.1mil above and beyond.

If it struck her fancy she could fly first-class to every show, put the band up in 5-star and dine on the
priciest vegetarian dish on the room-service menu every night on tour, and still not spend half that.  It's her
money to do with as she pleases, and I dare say she's earned it, but to say she can't pay these people
goes beyond credibility.  [edit: Now, if you SEPARATE the tour from the album, apply the kickstarter only
to the costs of the album and premiums, and try to make a tour that's profitable, or at least break-even
on it's own revenues.... THEN another $35-40K for backup musicians could be an unacceptable cost.]


-note on that edit: I wasn't thrilled with the original tone of that post, but rather than nuke the whole thing
and replace it, I added an addendum.  Still not exactly right, but closer...
Logged
Is it bad that what she said made perfect sense to me?

faninor

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 27
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #40 on: September 19, 2012, 02:43:01 AM »

Even though the goal was only $100K, they realistically expected to get much more than that. If they had only raised $100k... I'm sure a tour still would've happened, but it would've been mostly or entirely funded by other means.
Logged

Mitholas

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Male
  • Posts: 108
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #41 on: September 19, 2012, 03:13:16 AM »

CeeGeeBee, you're still forgetting most of the kickstarter money was spent before it had even come in. 100k was about the most that would remain and with 4-5 videos made so far, it's doubtful that much remains. Her plan was always to reinvest all the money into promotion. Those gorgeous vids? Money turned into images.
Logged

Musings

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Female
  • Posts: 3011
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #42 on: September 19, 2012, 05:11:31 AM »

Even if Amanda had planned on making 1 million dollars, she made over $200,000 over that.  I still don't know all the arithmetic, and don't claim to, but it seems, at the least, that all of the money she raised was not budgeted correctly or that she did not plan on paying musicians in her budget.  Taxes, Kickstarter items, videos, and yes, paid musicians in every city, should have been part of the budget.  I'm not sure what's worse -- not planning the budget to pay musicians in all cities, or not managing the budget enough to pay all of those musicians (except, of course, in cities like New York City).

What might have happened is Amanda planned an extravagant tour with costumes, with a full playing band, with many, many stops.
She made a great CD.
She commissioned beautiful artwork and inserts for the CD for Kickstarter products.
And house gigs.
And videos.
And merch.
And her regular staff.
And etc., etc., etc., all the things I don't know that you pay for in a music industry.

And found that she didn't have enough money to pay musicians everywhere.

Now, some people would argue -- count down on the stuff (some tour stops, some videos, even some merch), and pay the humans more.  Yes, this results in less products for us fans to enjoy, and less promotion of the album, but...

Humans.
Logged
www.upstreamofconsciousness.blogspot.com

"Just dance, gonna be OK, just dance." - Lady Gaga, inspired by Rainer Maria Rilke

Miss Sahara

  • .............
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1009
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #43 on: September 19, 2012, 06:54:42 AM »

Ummm... Don't look now, but the girl also has to eat, drink, pay bills, pay loans, ... Traveling with half an orchestra isn't just "basic touring needs". Basic touring needs for Amanda has always been the few essentials required to play her music. She tours with an electric piano and some essential band and crew members. All of which already costs a lot of money. Adding a bunch of musicians to that, all of whom need to be fed and kept, would increase the costs immensely. Taking on that many people extra is a big endeavor and a financial risk. As she doesn't have a record label to back her up in any way, I think people need to stop assuming she has tonnes of green in the bank so that she can just do whatever and not have to seriously consider this stuff. I think people greatly underestimate what everything from recording to manufacturing to touring costs these days.
She's always done all of these things... eat drink etc.  Managed to get herself, Brian (or the band)
from here to there, put some sort of roof over the collective heads, and food on the band's table,
and never with anything remotely close to the resources she has now.  What do you suppose she'd
planned with $100K? Surely  SOME SORT of tour, no?  Now add an additional $1.1mil above and beyond.

If it struck her fancy she could fly first-class to every show, put the band up in 5-star and dine on the
priciest vegetarian dish on the room-service menu every night on tour, and still not spend half that.  It's her
money to do with as she pleases, and I dare say she's earned it, but to say she can't pay these people
goes beyond credibility.  [edit: Now, if you SEPARATE the tour from the album, apply the kickstarter only
to the costs of the album and premiums, and try to make a tour that's profitable, or at least break-even
on it's own revenues.... THEN another $35-40K for backup musicians could be an unacceptable cost.]


-note on that edit: I wasn't thrilled with the original tone of that post, but rather than nuke the whole thing
and replace it, I added an addendum.  Still not exactly right, but closer...


I don't know if you saw it but $ 35K was actually the figure she mentioned in the NYT interview. When the Kickstarter started, she said it was also for touring ("Amanda Palmer: The new record, art book, and TOUR"). And she said, the more money she gets the more fancy everything would be. So to make the tour more fancy and include more musicians and then not pay them all is inconsistent, at least.
Logged

Astica

  • Ghost
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Gender: Female
  • Posts: 3612
  • Purportedly decadent.
Re: The Grand Theft Controversy
« Reply #44 on: September 20, 2012, 10:12:23 AM »

It DOES seem kinda odd to respond to the unexpected increase in funds by making everything fancier (even down to the thank you cards) without setting any money aside to adequately fund the tour.

As I said before, if people are happy to volunteer then I don't see a problem, but to say she -can't- afford to pay them just sounds like she either can't budget or it wasn't a priority for her.
Logged
Quote from: Indja
I mean really, my sins are my own - i don't wnat some cunt to swoop in and wipe the slate clean. it is my fucking slate. fuck offf.

Quote from: N.U.
Tricorns are fuckbanana awesome.
Pages: 1 2 [3] 4  All   Go Up