5 things we learnt this week from Amanda Palmer

Amanda Palmer Dresden Dolls at Auckland Sept 06 by wonderferret cc-licence

As the fallout from the Kickstarter fiasco starts to cool down, a number of valuable lessons have come to the fore.

1. If you’re not ON a label, you ARE the label

A record ‘label’ is just a corporate identity for a series of functions – the funding of the recording process, manufacturing, arranging distribution, publicity, and numerous other business transactions. If you want to have your record available to buy by the general public and are not releasing it through a label, you have to assume responsibility for all of those functions yourself. You’re not so much “sticking it to The Man” as becoming The Man. This will inevitably mean hiring help to deal with these things, which makes you a manager in the business sense. The more you can understand about business and marketing processes, the more likely you are to succeed at what you’re doing. Being able to budget effectively is at least as important as writing a nice tune.
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Whatever I was expecting from Robert Zemeckis’ 2007 CGI mo-cap interpretation of the ancient Anglo-Saxon classic, Beowulf was a complete surprise. It might share technology with The Polar Express,  but this is no children’s fantasy. It carries a hard ’12’ rating – as bloody and unsettling as The Dark Knight – but its pitch as a grown-up type of monster tale is mostly carried by its themes.

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