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Making music our way. Notes of cayenne pepper, time passing, and ghosts. Your pledge will make our next album a reality. Get into it!
Making music our way. Notes of cayenne pepper, time passing, and ghosts. Your pledge will make our next album a reality. Get into it!
321 backers pledged $16,925 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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$16,925

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*Stretch Goal $17.5k *

**If we can make it to $17.5k we will be able to add an additional track to the album, bringing our total to 10 songs!**

My name is Claire and I am a songwriter, instrumentalist, vocalist, and arranger based out of New York City. My band, Youth in a Roman Field, is prepping to record our second album with legendary producer Stewart Lerman (Elvis Costello, Sufjan Stevens, Rufus Wainright). And we're asking for your help.

THE BAND 

I started the band four years ago with the help of BFFs Tiffany Topol and Scott Stangland. Since the summer of 2012, we have grown from three members to six (adding Cassidy Stirtz, Katrina Lenk, and Jamie Mohamdein), moved from Chicago to New York, recorded an album and an EP, and played a bunch of shows here in our new home on the East Coast. 

THE MUSIC

We'll be recording 12-14 songs- a set of tunes very much about and influenced by wandering, searching for roots, and feeling haunted by people and places along the way. 

I like to call us a bastardized string quartet-meets-folk-band; many of the songs are written on the violin, and we use two violas, upright bass, piano, accordion, guitar, ukulele, percussion, and vocals, making up the rules as we go to get the sounds we like.

New Orleans, LA. The place where a lot of these tunes went down on paper.
New Orleans, LA. The place where a lot of these tunes went down on paper.

THE PRODUCER  

Instead of going the conventional route and trying to impress a record label, we are going directly to you, our community, in hopes of creating an industry-quality album while remaining completely independent of the industry. If funded, we'll be able to work with the one and only Grammy-Award-winning Stewart Lerman. Stewart is a rockstar of a producer, having worked with St. Vincent, Sufjan Stevens, Sharon Van Etten, Elvis Costello, Neko Case, Patti Smith, Antony + the Johnsons, Rufus Wainwright, and Nellie McKay, among others. He frequently produces for HBO as well as for directors Martin Scorsese, Wes Anderson, and John Carney.

What so invigorated me during my first talk with Stewart was that he instantly honed in on the fact that we could make this record happen any way we wanted, using our unusual instrumentation to its fullest. It quickly became clear that he could make the events in my mind a reality- could help guide, support, and challenge us. We want to work with Stewart because he not only understands where we’re coming from but celebrates it.

My prized possession & chief writing tool- a Lupot violin handed down to me by my dad.
My prized possession & chief writing tool- a Lupot violin handed down to me by my dad.

THE MONEY  

Our goal of $16,000 isn’t actually enough to make this whole album. Every day in the studio costs us $1,000, and that's before mixing, mastering, and paying anyone in the band. The more we raise, the more complete this album will be. We care about making a fair-trade album where everyone gets paid for their time.

THE COMMUNITY 

We can only make this album if you decide that you, our community, want to support our fair-trade, independent, no-rules approach here on kickstarter. We are so grateful and inspired by the response we've gotten at our shows. It makes us think that there are more of you out there that want to get behind a new project; that want to support; that want to say yes to the unknown. We want to celebrate our community, and so we're offering a really cool package that includes not only our album but albums from other independent artists that we know and love. We're offering live events like listening parties and concerts in non-traditional spaces. We're offering personalized songs and videos. We want to include you, to share with you, to make this happen together.

Claire, Tiffany, Jamie, & Scott, doing some highly creative work.
Claire, Tiffany, Jamie, & Scott, doing some highly creative work.

   

Risks and challenges

This a highly experimental process in the sense that we haven't yet recorded with this particular lineup of incredible people. With our band having grown to six, we're aiming to track a lot of the record live as well as allow time for experimentation, re-instrumentation, and new ideas. Each dollar raised above and beyond our initial goal expands the number of songs we're able to record as well as the amount of time we're able to spend fine-tuning them. And then there's marketing the thing. A top priority with this record is expanding our music's reach, and each and every one of you can help us with that, whether it's by donating through kickstarter, sharing our campaign, or attending our shows. We are so grateful for the support we have already received and thank you in advance for participating any way you can.

Cheers to one & all!

-Claire & Youth in a Roman Field

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    The Social Media Shout Out

    A personal thanks from me to you. Not on the social network(s)? I am just as grateful and will send you an email about it. Not on email? You're my hero and I will be calling you.

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    The Main Event: Earlybird Edition

    A digital download of the album + The Social Media Shout Out.

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    The Main Event

    A digital download of the album + The Social Media Shout Out.

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    The Curated Digital Collection

    Eight digital album downloads from fellow independent musicians hand-picked by the band + The Main Event + The Social Media Shout Out.

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    The Single Thumbs Up

    A vinyl pressing of the album + A Make-Your-Own-Rules Button + The Main Event + The Social Media Shout Out.

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    The Double Thumbs Up

    The Single Thumbs Up + eight digital album downloads from fellow independent artists hand-picked by the band.

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    The Curated Vinyl Collection

    Three Vinyl records & three CDs from fellow independent artists hand-picked by the band + The Double Thumbs Up.

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    The Epic Hang

    An invitation for you & a friend to attend an album listening party (before the thing is released!) in the NYC area. Includes The Double Thumbs Up.

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    Pledge $375 or more About $375

    The No-Rules Kitchen Concert: Solo Show

    I will come to your house/any location you feel embodies our 'no rules' concept & play a show. You get to help choose the setlist. Must take place within the greater NYC area OR in an area we are passing by on tour. Includes the Double Thumbs Up + The Epic Hang.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    The No-Rules Arranging Service

    Are you a writer or musician looking for some epic strings or swooning vocals on a track? I will lovingly expand a song of your choosing, arrange & record vocals/strings/other negotiable instruments. Includes The Double Thumbs Up + The Epic Hang.

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    The On-Location Cellphone Video

    Videos are all the rage these days! & we’ll make one for you! I will come play either a Youth tune OR a cover of your choosing at any location, provided it’s within the greater NYC area or in an area we are passing by on tour. Includes The Double Thumbs Up + The Epic Hang.

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    The No-Rules Kitchen Concert: Band Show

    At least three members of the band will come to your house/chosen location & play a show. You get to help choose the setlist. Must take place within the greater NYC area OR in an area we are passing by on tour. Includes The Double Thumbs Up + The Epic Hang.

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    The Creative Outlet

    I will write & record a song just for you. Includes The Double Thumbs Up + The Epic Hang.

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    The No-Rules Arranging Service

    EP Edition. My arranging & recording services on up to 5 of your songs. Got more songs? Let’s chat. Includes The Double Thumbs Up + The Epic Hang.

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    The Patron

    If you are supporting me at this level, you clearly believe in the music we're making and I'm very grateful. Let's have a coffee, phone call or skype to figure out how we can team up to break the rules together. Includes a combination of the above rewards.

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Funding period

- (29 days)