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I'm moving in a new direction, folks, and I hope you come with me.
I'm moving in a new direction, folks, and I hope you come with me.
510 backers pledged $50,620 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$50,620

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The songs are written. I got my guitar and my duct tape and my little pen and dollar all set up (if you've seen me live, you know what I'm talking about!). Now, I need you guys to get me to the studio so I can bring this thing to life.

For those of you who don't know exactly how Kickstarter works, the main thing to remember is that if we don't raise ALL the money, we don't get any of it (you aren't charged until we meet that goal and the campaign closes).  It's the ultimate trust fall.  

THE STORY:

I started out singing Otis Redding covers in bars while football games were on the big screen above me.  When I got signed to a record label in 2009, I thought all my dreams had come true--and they did.  Being with Anti- and having them to support the creation of my last 3 records has put me in places that I had long wished to be, and I am beyond grateful for that.  But the business is ever-changing, and with that, I’ve been feeling the need to steer the horse in a different direction.  So this time around, I've decided to go it on my own for this next record...with just you guys to back me.  More than ever, I see the importance of building a community, and trusting that if you work your damn hardest and truly believe in what you're doing, people will rally behind you.  

THE ALBUM:

I’ve always been tied to the idea of having each record sound different from the one before it, and there’s no exception with this one. My writing on this one is really reflective of the story that I've been living out over the past few years--as a musician, a father, and a human trying to navigate this crazy world.  It's also the stories that we all share: the everyday stuff, and the big stuff.  As always, I poured my heart into these songs.  When I came across the opportunity to link up with an internationally acclaimed producer who I have long admired, I knew he would be able to add some deep mojo to the recordings.

Matt Ross-Spang (Grammy-Winning engineer of Jason Isbell’s Something More Than Free, one of my favorite records of last year) is a musical Willy Wonka, and his Chocolate Factory is the legendary Sam Phillips Studio in Memphis, TN. This place has an unmatched soul and a vibe that stems from the history of Memphis as a haven for many of my musical heroes. I’m incredibly honored and excited to work with Matt and the team at Sam Phillips to make this next record the best that it can be.  With your help, we'll start recording in July!

Matt Ross-Spang in front of the legendary Sam Phillips Studio
Matt Ross-Spang in front of the legendary Sam Phillips Studio

THE REWARDS: 

This New Album is not yet recorded, so it won't be released until early next year. To tide you over, though, I've got a new EP, All We Can Do, that was produced by my good friend Troy Pohl (producer of my records Magic and Madman).  It's got 3 new tracks and 2 covers (Leonard Cohen's "Bird on the Wire" and Edwyn Collins' "Girl Like You").  As soon as this campaign is complete and the goal is met, I'll start shipping out the CD to those of you who pledge $50 or more (any pledge amount gets you an immediate digital download of the EP).  Hopefully, it'll keep your ears happy til this new one comes out.  

Here's a listen to the title track, "All We Can Do": 

I wanted all the rewards to not only give you guys something for your money, but to also give you a real understanding of how much your support means to the making of this record--it's everything.  

The "Please Pick Me" Pack is the ONE.  If we can get 1,000 people to donate at this level or higher, the album is made. Besides physical copies of both the EP and New Album, I had this idea that I wanted you guys to truly be a part of this album -- by putting your faces on it.  If you send in a photo, it'll be included on the photo collage poster that is inset into both the Vinyl and CD versions of the New Album.  

Some other goodies include a Limited Edition Comic Cover Poster, created by official DC/Marvel comic Don Kramer (who I actually met at a house show!):

printed full color 11x17
printed full color 11x17

If you live anywhere within driving distance of Troy, NY, the "Exclusive New Album Show" pack is a really special event: For the first time ever, I'll be playing ALL of the tracks that will be on the New Album.  That means you'll have a chance to hear all the songs, before anyone else, LIVE.  And it'll give me a chance to personally hug each and every damn one of you to thank you for giving my songs life.  

There's other pretty great stuff in there, too, including a copy of my demos from Madman and Salesman and the Shark.  These won't ever be released or sold again, and there's a limited, numbered set of 200! 

Plus, if there's anything else you want to see as a reward...let me know and I'll throw it on there (please...take one of my cats.  They're mischievous little bastards). 

THE BUDGET:

Every dime you donate is going towards making this record and fulfilling rewards.  Here's where every single dollar goes: 

Album Production : including the incredible team at Phillips Studio and the top tier of session musicians: $21,600

Post Production : mixing, mastering, and making it sound worthy of your ears, plus laying out the album art: $4,300

Manufacturing : 1,000 vinyl + 1,000 CDs : $6,500

Fulfilling the Pledges : including designing + printing posters, lyric sheets, and thank you cards, and shipping it all out (shipping cost based on 1,000 shipped vinyl or cds; all shipping is included in your pledge): $5530 

Fees : Kickstarter takes 5%, and Amazon takes 3-5% to process the payments :  about $4115

Just In Case : because, who the hell knows : $1,455

THE TIMELINE:

Risks and challenges

The biggest challenge is being met right now, by you guys. After that, I'll be in studio doing everything I can to make this album the best one yet. I'll also have an amazing team of friends and family helping me ship out all the rewards to you, including the physical CD of the new EP as soon as that goal is met! And I'll keep you informed every step of the way, with video and picture updates from the studio, and updates on exactly when we start printing the albums. If there are ever any questions, I'm just an email away.

If putting together this campaign has taught me anything, it's that the only way that anything in this world can work is if we do it together, support each other, and have faith that people will be there to catch you. I have the ultimate good fortune to have an incredibly supportive booking agent, and a beautiful group of friends, family, and fans who helped make this campaign the best it could be. For that, I will be thankful no matter what.

And so, we're off. Thank you guys, from the bottom of my little bearded heart.
love,
sean

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    THE DIGITAL PACK:

    New Album download when it is released + an immediate (within 24 hours) download of the new EP, "All We Can Do". The EP has 3 new original tracks and 2 covers. I'll also send you a personal signed thank you card, designed by my good friend Erika Walsh and featuring a beautiful sketch of my old beaten up guitar in the weeds.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THE PLEASE PICK ME:

    This is the one, folks. If we can get just 1,000 people to pledge $50, this album is made. In return, you'll get a Signed Vinyl (or CD) copy of the New Album when it is released + a Signed physical CD of the new EP, "All We Can Do"(to be mailed starting July 1) + digital downloads of all 3 + the personal thank you card. When you pledge this amount, please also send in a photo of yourself (or your kids, or dogs, or whatever!) that we will place in a collage poster of all the fans who made this project happen, to be included in the New Album Vinyl/CD. I want to see your face on my album!

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    THE POSTER PACK:

    It's the "Please Pick Me" you see above + the 11x17 Numbered, Limited Edition Comic Cover Poster featuring me as a superhero, fighting the good fight. Ok, I'm no Batman, but still...

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    Pledge $90 or more About $90

    THE RARE SONGS PACK:

    So this is a super special one, folks. You'll get the "Please Pick Me" + a Signed CD and digital download of all the demos from my past 2 records, Madman and Salesman and the Shark. These demos are not released anywhere else and will not be for sale again after the Kickstarter is over! These are my babies--the little seeds that later became the songs you love. You'll hear the raw, unadulterated songs while they were still in the making. You'll hear ambulance sirens going by my window and the kids playing in the background. But mostly, you'll hear how the process happens for me. It's like peering into my soul...

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    THE LYRIC SHEET PACK:

    The "Please Pick Me" + handwritten lyrics to my song of your choice, written on an 11x17 poster created by my good friends at Commonwealth Press. The handwriting might not be so great, but the poster is pretty damn cool.

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    Reward no longer available 20 backers
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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    THE MIX TAPE PACK:

    The "Please Pick Me" + a mix tape (actually, CD + digital download) of song picks based on a theme of your choosing. Plus, I'll send along a card letting you know why I chose each song!

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    Reward no longer available 10 backers
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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    BY POPULAR DEMAND!
    Limited time, 10 more Lyric Sheets available!

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    Limited 6 backers
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    Pledge $110 or more About $110

    THE EXCLUSIVE NEW ALBUM SHOW PACK:

    Ok, this one is a good one. In addition to the "Please Pick Me", you get to be the first to hear the ENTIRE ALBUM FROM START TO FINISH, LIVE way before it comes out. On October 29, 2016, I'll be performing all the tracks off of my new album at my favorite spot, Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs, NY. I'm so excited to bring you guys these songs, to break in Caffe Lena's NEW sound system, and to personally thank each and every one of you for making this happen. Hope to see you there.

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    Pledge $220 or more About $220

    EXCLUSIVE NEW ALBUM SHOW PACK
    for 2 TICKETS
    Same as above, but for 2 tickets, so that you don't have to pledge twice!

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    THE GOODY BAG:

    All the goodies (the G-rated kind, people)!
    -CD + download of the new EP, "All We Can Do"
    -Vinyl or CD + download of the new album
    -CD + download of Demo Tracks
    -Comic Poster
    -Lyric Sheet
    -Mix Tape

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    THE VIRTUAL SHOW PACK:

    The "Please Pick Me" + a Virtual Concert, wherever you are in the world! It's an hour long set of my songs and covers that YOU (and your friends/family!) choose, plus a Q&A period after. If you're a fan abroad (or in the US far away from me) , I'd love to do this with you guys. I promise I'll bring all the energy and sweat that I do to the in person live shows. And, you can be in your jammies.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    THE FORAGING + DINNER PACK:

    If you know me, you know about my love affair with wild foods. Here, you get The "Please Pick Me" + a 3-4 hour foraging experience to be followed by a dinner made with all the goods we found that day! This is such an amazing way to experience foraging full circle. FYI, it's totally legit for you to share this incentive with others! You can have as many people as you are comfortable with (I suggest 10-12) and split the fee with them. We can do it in your own backyard, or at one of my super secret foraging spots.
    NOTE: limited to within a 4 hour drive of Troy, NY, OR touring schedule (so, you CAN pledge for this if you live in, say Washington State, but it will be scheduled for when I'm in that area).
    NOTE: I can also do a Survival Skills course instead of Foraging if you like! It's awesome for kids or adults, and we'll do skills like fire making, shelter, cordage, and/or baskets. Plus you'll get all kinds of material to keep for practice.

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    THE PRODUCER PACK:

    It's the whole damn thing:
    -Vinyl or CD and Digital Downloads of the New Album + the EP "All We Can Do" + the Demo Tracks
    -The Limited Edition Comic Cover Poster
    -The Lyric Sheet
    -The Virtual Show
    -Your Name Credit as a producer on the New Album
    -4 guest list passes to any 3 shows of your choice
    -My most sincere and humble thanks

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Funding period

- (30 days)