Funded! This project was successfully funded on June 23, 2012.

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SchoolTree is rock for your brain. Join the revolution, subvert the institution, this isn't prostitution (right??): make art happen!

[video by the incredibly wonderful Caleb Cole, pics and some studio footage by the fantastically awesome Gonzalo Plaza]

Added 6/12 - Album raw tracks preview (unmixed):

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More updates at www.laineyrules.com

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My name is Lainey SchoolTree and, with my band SchoolTree, I’m making an album.

It is my destiny.

I'm a composer, performer, and producer out of Boston. I'm known for my quirky originality, audio artisanship, obsessive attention to detail, and boobs. After recording my first release My Metal Mother for the RPM Challenge 2011, I started working with some great musicians and playing live shows in Boston. Across the last year, we became a band together. Our music is at times ambitious, some might even say progressive, but also (we hope) catchy and accessible. With the fabulous multi-talents of Jordan Ross, Brendan Burns, and Derek Van Wormer, we've begun a journey at the end of which we shall frolic in the meadows of album-having glory. But like Frodo and the One Ring, we’re only at the gates of Moria, and there’s a long way fraught with peril to get to Mount Doom (a.k.a. mastering?). We need your help to get there and save Middle Earth! I mean make this album.

To make an album, you need some money. This is the sucky truth. Originally I had no idea how to make this happen, being of the starving artist persuasion and therefore eluded by even the very concept of compensation. Then I became aware of the miracle of crowdfunding. Suddenly the impossible (having money) seemed possible. The good news is, if you’re clever, able, and willing to sacrifice and do as much as possible yourself, you can make an amazing album to a high standard on a comparatively small budget. And that, folks, is the Plan.

Some of the things we need to pay for:

- Recording at Dimension Sound Studios (This place is the Millenium Falcon of recording studios!)

- Mastering at world-class mastering facility Peerless Mastering with the Jeff Lipton – After pouring my blood, sweat, tears, and other precious bodily fluids into my work on this album, I'll rest easy knowing it will be in the hands of an absolute master.

- Eco-friendly replication and packaging of the album

- A couple pieces of audio equipment to record some overdubs at Lainey’s home studio

- Album art/design

- Photos of the band

- Distribution

- Copyrighting

- Promotion/publicity

- Donor gifts - packaging, postage, and other little costs add up!

- the bazillion other little things that come up along the way

By contributing to this album, you are becoming our record label. $8,500 may seem like a lot of money, but that total doesn’t even quite cover everything, even on this independent scale. It seems like a reasonable place to start, though. I’m clever and frugal and know how to stretch a dollar, find bahgains, and do everything I can possibly do myself…

We've also come up with some fun rewards we think you'll enjoy. I'll likely be augmenting packages (whoa) as this thing moves along, especially if we go beyond our goal, which would be so amazing, I'm thinking about offering something crazy if we do.

Every last cent we raise over this amount will go straight into cutting fewer corners, bigger rewards for donors, better promo, a music video, and to making the album generally biggerer and betterer!

Live track from one of our first shows together:

Aaaannnd the record that Lainey made alone in her home studio in 28 days (before the band was born):

More about Lainey and SchoolTree:

Over the years I’ve been involved in a lot of different projects, including a music-comedy duo (The Steamy Bohemians), producing and building a chaos-loving variety show (Jerkus Circus), writing and performing with a multi-media puppet troupe (Elephant Tango Ensemble), and composing music for and performing in a sideways and soulful cabaret show (Bent Wit Cabaret). In between all that stuff I went back to school for audio engineering/production and produced a couple of records. I’ve had a pretty amazing time.

But ultimately it’s all been procrastination, because at the bottom of my theater-loving, habitually joke-cracking, collaboration-junkie heart, the thing that I’ve yearned for relentlessly every livelong day as long as I can remember was to have my own band. A rock band. A PROGRESSIVE ROCK BAND. (Well, sort of.*)

Across the last year this obsession has materialized, and I’ve narrowed my focus to this one project.

I’ve been steeped in the album-oriented rock of the 70’s for a long time (bands like Yes, ELO, King Crimson, Genesis, Gentle Giant, Kate Bush…), and this has doubtlessly influenced me. In some ways I want to pick up where I feel this genre/era left off. But the music of SchoolTree itself frustratingly defies categorization. The songwriting has one foot in the classical world (some favorite eras include Romantic, Impressionist, and 20th Century) and the other in the realm of two-fisted rock-and-bloody-roll,-mate. If I had a third foot, I guess you could say it was firmly planted in pop – I love a succinct, well-crafted, and catchy tune. I think all these elements can co-exist simultaneously.

In order to properly execute this music, I needed musicians who were not only technical hotshots, but artisans of their instruments. I was extremely lucky (like, lottery lucky) to find them: Jordan Ross (drums), Brendan Burns (guitar), and Derek Van Wormer (bass). I am in love with this band. These fellas have poured their hearts and time into arranging and bringing the songs to life with me, defining our aesthetic and our sound. SchoolTree is the spirited collaboration of these tremendous people. I am honored to be making this album with them.

So SchoolTree is recording our debut album, FINALLY! Making this happen is do-or-die for me, so we’ve begged/borrowed/stolen to get things rolling, but we need your help to bring this album into the world.

Where we are at now: we just recorded basics at Dimension Sound Studios in one 15-hour day of total madness. Next: take selection/comping, overdubs, many many overdubs, and then mixing. Basically I’m knocked up with a music baby, and I need to bring this sucker to term and deliver it. I’m so excited about the material we already have – great care has gone into getting wonderful sounds and capturing the sound of the band.

The one constant in my kinda chaotic life has been the music that I write. It’s to my utter glee and terror that it’s moving forward in such a huge way.

The support for this album has already been so amazing. There's a great deal of excitement and investment in making this happen. Please help me do it right!

Breast wishes,

Lainey

p.s. The music featured in the video will indeed be on this upcoming album.

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    1 backer

    PeeWee Package - One free download from our upcoming album + you pick a word and for that day, every time Lainey hears it, she will scream real loud + our sincerest gratitude

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    4 backers

    Bread and Buttah - Two free downloads off the album + your name listed on our website + an fb shout out + Lainey will think of you when she is making toast

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    24 backers

    Pitch a Ten - Album pre-order! One digital download of the new album + your name listed on our website + an fb shout out

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    Press Pass - Be the first kid on your block to own SchoolTree’s debut album. Includes a digital download of the album one week before the release + your name (or alias) listed on our website + an fb shout out

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    6 backers

    Bent Wit Soundtrack - Exclusive download of all the music Lainey created for variety show Bent Wit Cabaret in its original, raw form - from song sketches to audio used in the actual show. Cannot be found anywhere else! Includes "Three Lovin' Holes", "Baby I Got a Bomb Shelter", and many more + the Press Pass Package

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    Believe the Skype - A 15-minute Skype concert with Lainey. I’ll play songs for you, give you advice, frolic through the house before your very eyes, or put on a play for you with my Star Trek action figures + the Press Pass Package

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    Anna Log - Signed physical copy of the album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + a hand written thank you on a hand-made postcard + an awesome cassette tape from the 80’s

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    Shoopy Doop - Signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + Lainey will Photoshop you into a picture with her (or the celebrity of your choice) for you to put on the interbutts for all the world to see! + the Press Pass Package

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    The Voyeur - RPM Tragedy demo EP + a signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button. This includes an exclusive download of an EP of Lainey’s unreleased weird electronic music she was doing for the 2011 RPM Challenge before her computer died, unheard by anyone! + the Press Pass Package

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    Animal Lover Early Bird Special - Pledge early and beat the crowds to get this coveted reward at a bargain-basement price! Your favorite cover song, sung by a cat, chicken, or other animal in three part harmony, deliverable in the audio format of your choosing (mp3, wav, wma, ogg, omg, etc) + a signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    Little Drummer Boy - A 1-hour lesson with THE Jordan Ross in the subject of your choosing (recommended: drum lesson, introductory badassdom, advanced badassdom, claiming to be a badass when you have no business doing so, and home decor.) – in-person for locals and via Skype for the geographically distant + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    Guitar God - Channel the gods of rock through your axe after a 1-hour guitar lesson with virtuoso and professional instructor Brendan Burns - in-person for locals and Skype for the geographically distant + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    2 backers Limited (1 left of 3)

    Bass Camp - A 1-hour lesson with heartthrob Derek Van Wormer in the subject of your choosing (recommended: bass lesson, life lesson, hair styling advice) – in-person for locals and via Skype for the geographically distant + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    Hot for Teacher - A 1-hour lesson with Lainey in the subject of your choosing (recommended: voice coaching, songwriting, audio production, cooking/nutrition, how to please your man), or we can just hang out! – in-person for locals and via Skype for the geographically distant + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    2 backers Limited (2 left of 4)

    Larp with Lainey - Lainey will don her unicorn princess costume and take you with her on a magical journey, which we'll film and put up on youtube. (If you're not nearby enough, she will larp with a picture of your head on a stick and put the video up for all to see.) Includes signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package.

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    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    Animal Lover Returns! - A second chance at happiness, via your favorite cover song, sung by a cat, chicken, or other animal in three part harmony, deliverable in the audio format of your choosing (mp3, wav, wma, ogg, omg, etc) + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    3 backers Limited (2 left of 5)

    The Muse - An original song written about you or the subject of your choice in the style of your choice, recorded by Lainey, deliverable in the audio format of your choosing (mp3, wav, wma, ogg, omg, etc) + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    The Songbird - Lainey will produce a song that you have written. She will either record you in her home studio, or she’ll record herself playing your music, complete with arrangement, production, and mixing, deliverable in the audio format of your choosing (mp3, wav, wma, ogg, omg, etc) + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    Cyber Sects - A 1-hour Skype concert with some or all of SchoolTree! Watch us play for you in the comfort of your own home. We'll learn songs for you or play you our original music + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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    Kiss the Cook - Includes a dinner date with SchoolTree. We'll make your favorite food, hang out with you, talk about how attractive you are, get drunk, and maybe even have a jam sesh + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + your name in our liner notes + your name on our website + the Press Pass Package

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    Live and Let Live - A live concert at your house! SchoolTree will pack up their gear and come play for you (outside 60 miles travel from the Boston area, we ask that you cover travel expenses) + signed physical copy of the new album + signed 11 x 17 poster + SchoolTree button + the Press Pass Package

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Funding period

- (29 days)