Rediscovering the Forgotten Work of Craw

If you are a music fan, you’re probably familiar with the phrase “I’ve heard of it but haven't heard it.” Now that the internet is a thing (the internet is sticking around, right?), you probably hear it way more than you used to. Everyone knows a little bit about everything, even if they’ve never actually heard the thing in question. Musician/journalist Hank Shteamer took it upon himself to excavate the early catalog of Cleveland post-hardcore band Craw, a quietly influential group that somehow managed to do what is now almost impossible: be forgotten.

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This Week In Kickstarter

Welcome back to our approximately twice-fortnightly rundown of some of the lesser-known things that've been happening in and around our world. Right now it's serious summer vibes at Kickstarter HQ: the windows have recently been washed so the light is coming in all nice, and we swear we can smell a hint of sunscreen in the air. It's making us feel like we're finally alive, so in honor of that, here are this week’s highlights, broken down for the five senses:

35.4% of the existing McSweeney's issues.
35.4% of the existing McSweeney's issues.

Things to read, watch, play, and otherwise look at: Our favorite internet weirds McSweeney's launched their project. True to their wildly varied style, the project includes something for everyone — you can back for print goodies, swag, and emailables galore (shouts to the phrase "didge bund," which we sincerely hope will catch on in the digital fulfillment world). 

You know who's universally beloved? Grandmas. This project is a webseries that features grandmas telling stories and sharing their recipes — and it's filmed by their grandchildren. (Also, it reminds us of old-school KS favorite Oma & Bella.) 

And we have to mention Yooka-Laylee, because 3D buddy platformers are back, in a big way. 

Name socks for all three of you.
Name socks for all three of you.

Things to feel: How could we make rolling up your pants legs in the springtime even better than it already is? Well, for starters, it would certainly help if our ankles were more colorful. Take a look at these socks from Bryt (especially if your name is Sam, Charlie, Jesse, Eden, Frankie, Natalie, Noah, James, or Poppy.) And if it's your circulation that's keeping you from enjoying funky sock designs, don't worry — the peeps at Top & Derby have your feet covered too. Next up: sandals. 

Combining scents is a highly scientific process.
Combining scents is a highly scientific process.

Things to smell: Atelier des Martyrs is making scented candles happen in combinations like Lime Blossom Tarragon Petitgrain. And our old friends Commodity Perfume, which ran a Kickstarter project for their fragrance line in 2013, are launching a try-at-home service. It's pretty much Warby Parker for your nose. Well, we guess glasses sit on your nose too, so let's say it's the olfactory Warby Parker. 

Things to listen to: Did you know there's never been a book that comprehensively covered and celebrated both the TV show and the music of the Partridge Family? Johnny Ray Miller wants to fix that. And if your tastes run less seventies soft-rock and more Cleveland post-hardcore, you'll be glad to know that music writer and all-around cool person Hank Shteamer is running a project to bring back three albums by the band Craw. We talked to Hank last year and you canread that too

Hypnotic kolache.
Hypnotic kolache.

Things to taste: Do you love butter, but hate its container? This is the project for you — a Chapstick-like butter dispenser that keeps your hands grease-free. And if you live in Montclair, NJ, here's a lot of amazing-looking bread for you to liberally butter. 

And finally, unless you're from the Lone Star State, you might not be familiar with kolaches. Well, if Chris Svetlik has anything to say about that, the good people of Washington DC will soon find out how great they are. But just for good measure, we also asked the resident Texan here at Kickstarter HQ for a one-sentence description. His reply? "Texan-Czech pigs in a blanket." That's one way to look at it. 

3 Fragen, 1 Projektgründer: Interview mit Axel Pfaender

Kickstarter is now available for creators and backers across Germany — and we're sharing tips from some creators in Germany to celebrate!

Axel Pfaender ist der Projektgründer der Berlin Boombox, und vereint klassisches Boombox-Design mit neuester Technologie. Die Berlin Boombox — hergestellt aus recycelter Wellpappe, mit einem kinderleichten Aufbau — ist “ein Lautsprecher für alle,” kompatibel mit fast jedem Smartphone und MP3-Player.

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Guest Post: How to Think About Rewards

Sarah A. O. is a repeat creator and consultant on many projects across the arts, including performance festivals, music venues, dance, and photography (here is her latest project, a sci-fi graphic novel in collaboration with 50+ artists). In short, Sarah has a pretty good idea of how to put a project page together. We asked her to write a guest post for us about how to plan and structure good rewards for your project.

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Talking Shop: Framing Science through Art

Year zero was a long time ago, but that's where Rachel Sussman's "The Oldest Living Things in the World" project begins. From photographing a 13,000 year old eucalyptus specimen to an 80,000 year old clonal tree colony, Sussman's work captures an incredibly diverse breadth of living things that were here long before us, and will hopefully be here long after.

Sussman considers her work a study of Deep Time, a concept she describes as creating a more personal relationship to timescales outside of our typical human experience. 

Recently Sussman visited Kickstarter HQ to discuss the project, her path to becoming a professional artist, and offer her advice for photographers and anyone trying to approach art as a career.

Here are a few of our favorite moments:

@9:41 "I think with creative work, regardless of whether it's art or not, we all want to have this sort of lightning bolt of inspiration. And I'd love to tell you that I was standing in front of the tree and got this idea, but that's not how it happened."

@16:42 "I think there's quite a mythology that can get built up about being the artist that makes it and breaks through. And more times than not, it's really going to be yourself pulling yourself up by your bootstraps."

@29:12 "Working through fear and doubt, and not giving up, is more important than what camera you have, or should you switch mediums. To me it's always about the idea."

Be sure to watch the full video above, then take a look at the project page or Sussman's website.

Tech Weekly: Out of This World

Space: the coolest frontier. We all want to go—to boldly follow in the footsteps of legends like Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and the other ones. While consumer space flight may still be a few years off, that's not going to stop some intrepid creators from shooting for the moon. Our Technology category is brimming with space-age modern marvels like the ones you see below.

Vulcan I: Rocket Powered by 3D Printed Engine

According to the Students for the Exploration and Development of Space, "The next logical step in human civilization is not only to explore, but to evolve into a spacefaring civilization." SEDS is a group of undergraduate students at the Universtiy of California, San Diego, and their project is called Vulcan 1. The mission is to design, print, and test a fully 3D-printed rocket engine. If all goes well, they'll launch the Vulcan I in June, and take the record for highest flight of a rocket powered by a 3D-printed engine.

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Ten Creators, One Question: What's Your Shipping Advice?

After you've reached your project goal, it's time to celebrate. But as we all know, the project is far from over. Now it's time to begin shipping out your rewards. It can seem like monumental task, and everyone does it slightly differently — but there's no reason to reinvent the wheel each time. We asked ten creators to share their best shipping advice with us.

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An Interview with De La Soul's Dave AKA Trugoy the Dove

Hip-hop can be tricky. The genre is about perpetual forward movement, and it's easy for artists to move from legendary to forgotten in no time at all. De La Soul have avoided that their entire career, perpetually reinventing themselves and exploring new territory even as they stay true to who they are as musicians. From their debut LP, Three Feet High and Rising, to today, the trio has consistently changed the way we think about music and pioneered new ways of making albums through off-kilter concepts and tonal shifts.

When they launched their Kickstarter project to fund their new album, we knew it'd do well, but we couldn't have predicted this magnitude of success. Here was a legendary group notorious for their willingness to experiment, taking a huge risk, putting the existence of their next record in the hands of their fans. Now, as their time on Kickstarter winds down, we spoke to Dave Jude Jolicoeur—who you may also know as Trugoy the Dove or Plug Two, depending on where your entry point into the De La Soul catalogue happens to be—about the group's past, the music industry, and what they're up to now.

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