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Ce Release Party Thoughts...


So… the CD isn’t done yet, but I’m already scheduling the CD Release Party—have a date, have the hall, &c. The experts say I shouldn’t be doing that. HAVE THE CDS IN HAND FIRST, they said. Apparently a lot of bands and musicians end up scrambling at the last minute to have “product” for an already-scheduled CD release party because something happened to delay production of the CDs. It could happen to us, too.

There is a lot of advice online about how to throw a CD release party (and one assumes at least some of it comes from people who know what they’re doing). Among their other pointers:

HAVE FOOD. Check. FREEBIES FOR THE ATTENDEES. A Deathgrass poster, perhaps. I think I know where to get those done cheap. SUPPORT STAFF. Somebody to deal with the food and drink, and somebody to deal with the money; the band can’t do it, because they’ll be playing. INVITATIONS. Can’t do it—the “joelist” has only names and e-mails, not mailing addresses. The media could get engraved invitations, though, along with their e-mails.

THE MEDIA GET ADVANCE COPIES OF THE CD, so the radio folks can play songs from the CD on the air, and the print folks can do reviews, all in advance of the Event—adding to the “buzz” that hopefully will induce people to come. The CDS SHOULDN’T GO ON SALE IN STORES UNTIL AFTER the release party, though, so people will go to the Event to get a copy before anyone else. The vendors are lined up beforehand, and displays made, so the CD goes on sale everywhere (or mostly everywhere) at the same time. Should have the CDBaby account ready, too.

We’ll have to do some things differently, of course. Our Event isn’t going to be held in a tavern; we’ve never been a “bar band,” and our fan base includes (unexplainably) a lot of teenagers. We’ll do it at the Bay City Arts Center (and generate some publicity for them in the process). We could even do it on a Sunday afternoon; one doesn’t have to do this stuff at night.

THE BAND PLAYS, of course—but a lot of the people I know are musicians; why not invite them to bring their instruments and sit in with the band? The Arts Center’s got a 15-channel mixing board—one can do a lot with that. (Big dance floor, too.) We play songs from the CD, of course—that’s traditional—but we don’t have to limit ourselves to that. And everything we do is simple, and easy to follow, and folks have heard it before. It could be more like a party than a performance, in other words. And we are small-time, after all; these folks are friends, not customers.

And—this is really speculative—could the Event be videotaped? Wil Duncan’s video class will still be going on, and the students might be interested in additional practice beyond the documentary they’re working on; yes, two of the students—Charlie and myself—are in the band, but there are five who aren’t. And the Arts Center has the equipment. If it happened, the results could go on the Deathgrass Website (which isn’t built yet)—and I might even be able to make DVDs (since “Alice” the ‘puter finally got her DVD-rewritable drive installed that I’ve had kicking around for months).

Back to the top, though. Need to HAVE THE CDS DONE AND IN HAND FIRST. And there’s still work to do to make that happen.



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