So ... I've been dancing around this idea for a long long time, but you've probably already gathered from the title of this blog that I'm thinking about making all my music free.
Some of you are probably thinking "YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY", and I'm glad. You're the biggest reason why I'd like to do this, of course.
Others are probably thinking "Oh nyooooooo Mike! What about all teh moniezez omggggz!!!1"
You know what though? The funny thing about this situation is... I don't make that much money from music. Seriously. At least not from digital downloads. I do get lucky sometimes and make a ton of money selling CDs at a live show, or getting paid to show up and play music somewhere, or getting free money/merch to rep some company for a brief time. And of course the occasional fan will buy a T-Shirt. Those things are rad, of course.
Sidenote: Larry, You rock
So yeah... if I suddenly started giving away ALL my music for free, I really really don't think I'd lose that much of my income. Not to mention the fact that good will brings more donors and supporters to offset the minimal loss I'd have anyway. Plus its fun as hell to give away music!
I don't know if you know this already. Some people know this... but... I've already
been giving away my music for free.... for like... a long time. I just haven't been advertising it. I do it in a lot of various ways, like:
- If someone talks to me 1 on 1 about liking my music BLAM here's a free copy
- If I notice someone is being extra supportive, I'll sometimes message them like "Yo dude how would you like some free Mp3s beeeeeesh"
- Often someone will just be like "Uhm ... hi... can I have your music?" and I'll be like Blaammmmmmmm here you go
- I have several pages/modules in my website that give away a limited amount of free music and downloads
- I really don't have a problem with people sharing my music, and I encourage it regularly
So you see... I'm already kind of giving it away for free as it stands. The problem I see is that its not consistent. Usually to get my music for free, someone has to communicate directly with me. But lately I've been noticing people (for some crazy reason) will be fans and yet never send me so much as a hello. I just talked with a girl the other day who claimed to be a fan for the last 3 years without so much as a hello (I was like "YAY!" and "Wtfffffffffff" at the exact same time).
So its like... if someone wants to support me, I know they will. People find a way to give that good-will back when they want to and are able. They'll buy physical merch that they can't get digitally, or they'll help me promote, or they'll overpay for a new digital release that they could have gotten for free anyway. People are awesome.
Not to mention that music is in of itself promotion, so the more people who have my music, the more it will help my music in general. That's just the way it works.
I'm just having a problem right now with people who want my music for free, but don't know that they can get it... so they end up not getting it and totally forgetting about me, or not getting it and listening live on my website and feeling crappy about themselves, or pirating it and feeling even crappier. Its like, dude! It doesn't have to be that way.
So... I'm thinking of making it official. Maybe I'll host a torrent from this website. Maybe I'll add some links somewhere. Maybe I'll program in little "Free Download!" buttons all over my discography pages. Maybe I'll just make one new giant page that's like "Check the boxes for the Mp3s you want for free.... beeshes". Who knows.
I think my mind is almost made up about this, given that I'm essentially already giving away my music for free. And of course I can always change my mind in the future and take links down and stuff if I regret it ... but its not like I could ever stop someone from pirating my music anyway, now or since the beginning of the internet, lol.
I guess what I'm really hoping to do today is start the process of letting everyone know about it. I'd like to see what you all think. Also maybe building anticipation while I code up some new pages on this website will be fun.
What do you all think? Tweet/mail/comment me, beeshes!