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Touting Friends

Talked to my friend, Millie Hesser and her husband, both Baltimore musicians for waterplanet about the business of promoting yourself in the music world and how hard it is. First, there is the fact that musicians do it for the love and not for the money; as a result, they never really focus on the business aspects. Second, their income comes locally, whereas establishing a reputation through online mp3’s doesn’t really help them get gigs locally. Third, “word of mouth” spread through mix tapes (well, at least 10 years ago), and restrictions on sharing mp3 files prevents people from making mix tapes or CD’s. (Actually that’s not entirely correct. RIAA artists don’t get copied, whereas smaller groups don’t face such restrictions. Fourth, the musician type just seems woefully incompetent about technical matters. It never occurred to my friend to let online visitors tip them. They had never heard of musiclink. A lot of decisions depend on who created the website. If the music company does it, they’re less likely to create alternate revenue methods. If it’s a friend or the artists themselves, they’re more likely to learn about such things (though the site will look amateurish).

I made a free mp3 download page for Waterplanet. You’ll find an odd singing style, compelling otherworldly lyrics, memorable melodies, uneven rhthyms, almost dadaistic progressions. Their “elevator pitch” describes them as “Naive Psychedelia, a primitive mesh of guitar, percussion, and voice. Melodic and throttling, dreamy and dark–forged from the finest of art house and punk, they uphold true musical independence.

Interesting thing about IUMA . Even though it’s a real pain to download individual mp3’s from a browser, IUMA lets you limit your mp3 search by state or even country . Most people are ignorant about the talent that lies in their own backyards.

Waterplanet a naive psychodelic band

An amazing account of living in a psycho ward by my friend Augustine Milk:

After groups and meals are done, you have ?free time.? This means you may pace the halls in the ward, watch the television in the day room (which is constantly being tuned to different channels by agitated patients who enter and leave the room within the space of a few minutes), or talk to the other patients who are sentient enough with whom to hold a conversation. Note that, unlike the health care workers, you must never appear to become frightened of or irritated by another patient, no matter how aggressive toward you or another patient they may become. A seriously retarded lesbian may, for example, pursue a pretty female patient who has been hospitalized for anxiety around the ward for days with very little staff intervention. If you do show negative emotion toward your fellow patients, this will be charted as inappropriate behavior on your part and you may find your release date set back further and further. And so the day passes until the lights are dimmed and it?s officially night again. Tomorrow will be just like today ? every effort is made to create a ?stable? environment, free from mental stimulation of any kind. You will be just as bored and incarcerated tomorrow as you have been today. Your nerves, already frayed by your illness, will be stretched to the limit by rules and procedures that seem arbitrary or even sadistic.

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