UPDATE 8.2.2019 - FUNDED! Stretch Goals at the bottom of the page!
Hey friends! My name's Mike. I am the sole member of the pop punk band Arwings. It's my pleasure to welcome to my first ever Kickstarter campaign for my debut album,
'I Promise It Will Be Okay.'
Arwings is an imaginary alt/pop-punk band influenced by artists like Max Bemis and Jeff Rosenstock (also been told I sorta sounds like Reggie & The Full Effect and Modern Baseball. BEYOND flattering). I like to call Arwings an imaginary band because the band and crew really is just me. For this record, I’m singing all the parts (minus some guest vocals), playing every instrument, recording it, mixing it, and will be mastering it. I’m even shooting and editing the music videos on my own, as well as doing all of the (bad) art.
This is a solo record in the most literal sense possible.
Doing this completely solo has been remarkable, but very challenging at the same time. It’s awesome having complete creative control, but at the same time I need to know when to stop and give myself deadlines to hit. Plus, to get specific for a sec, I ain't a drummer. Deciding to track drums on my own was a pretty dumb call. But hey, it worked!
Even with these challenges, I'm absolutely LOVING how it's turning out so far.
But don't take my word for it, check out the first "full band" single!
How about one more:
Fun Fact: This is the only "positive" song on the record (even though it's a love song with a darker twist), and one of the only acoustic tracks on there. While we're on that subject...
What is the record about?
Well. For a lack of a better term. It's depressing as all heck. I've been in and out of bands since high school, and temporarily bailed on that part of my life to focus on my audio engineering career. In more recent years, life has hit myself and my family incredibly hard.
I lost my dad to cancer.
I dealt with the regret of pushing him away and never reconnecting before it was too late.
I was cheated on by someone who I thought I was going to grow old with.
I felt alone and abandoned.
I felt like a freak.
Y'know. The usual.
To cope, I started writing again and playing guitar more often, posting early demos and whatnot on Instagram to get myself comfortable with being heard again. Eventually, I realized I had a handful of songs (or at least ideas) that I really dug and conveniently coincided with this theme of venting about pain and those who've hurt me (including myself). So I decided to turn it into an album.
But why use the name Arwings and not just Mike Towndrow? Short answer, Star Fox 64 is my favorite game of all time. The Arwing is the ship Fox and his team uses on missions. On a deeper level, this is the only game that helped my dad understand my love for gaming and why it mattered as an art form. Ironically, it so happens to be a story about a son following in his father's footsteps. It's both a little nod to our relationship, and just a nod to the greatest hero to have ever lived.
Working on a record that's so heavy in concept and completely alone is physically and emotionally taxing. Plus, it takes a LONG time. But I see the light at the end of the tunnel, and I’m getting super close to a late summer/early fall release.
So why Kickstarter?
TL;DR answer: To help me continue creating music. For both Arwings and my pro audio work, I exclusively mix on my laptop. It’s served me well for many years, but it’s starting to die a slow, painful death. Random shutdowns, not being able to handle sessions like theses Arwings sessions, unable to record basic audio. The whole nine yards. So the goal of this Kickstarter is to help soften the blow of a replacement MacBook a bit. For what I need inside a pro audio machine, it’s going to run me a little over $2,000. As someone right outside NYC looking to move into a new place with his girlfriend, I can’t drop that kind of money right now. But like. I need to for work. And that's hilariously rough.
What can I offer in return for your support?
I’m a huge fan of physical goodies and perks that go along with album pre-orders, so I thought of a few fun ones!
- An early download to the album, either a day or a week
- A Kickstarter exclusive "deluxe" edition with embarrassing early and unused demos
- A physical version of the Kickstarter Deluxe burnt on a CD personalized with a Sharpie
- A random vinyl from my personal record collection
- A Kickstarter Exclusive shirt!! (mockup below)
- An original song written for you
- Sweet nasty P R O D U C E R credit!
Plus! I want to do a livestream "concert" from the studio exclusively for all backers once the campaign wraps and is successful.
UPDATE 8.2.2019 - STRETCH GOALS
I'm legitimately in SHOCK that this campaign was funded in 9 hours. It completely blows my mind and fills my head. From the bottom of my sad, emo boy soul: Thank you. With that being said, let's keep this train rolling with some Stretch Goals!
$750 - Acoustic EP (Winter 2019) [REACHED!]
I have a few new and old song ideas in mind to do a smaller scaled acoustic EP for late this year. Granted, this record was originally supposed to be acoustic and look what happened. But that's the plan right now! In addition, every backer will receive a digital download early with bonus demos. How early? Pretty much as soon as I finish it.
$1000 - Hip Hop/Pop Cover Album or EP (Winter 2019/2020)
This is something I've wanted to do forever. When starting Arwings, I had an idea to a YouTube series of covers. But I started the album, and it would've just become too much to do at once. My idea is to record however many covers and film "music videos" for each one, releasing them weekly on YouTube, and eventually as a full album or EP (depending on how many song I end up doing). Fall/winter will be the perfect time to get back to that. Similar to the Acoustic EP, all backers will receive the cover album/EP in full before the YouTube videos being to go live or I even shoot them. Again, essentially as soon as I finish. In addition, folks who contribute at the $50 tiers or above can suggest a song for me to cover. If we hit this goal, I'll add a reward for a weird, stupid, fun physical edition.
$1250 - Album Release Show/Party (Fall 2019)
I want to get back to playing shows, and what better way to do that than to throw a party celebrating this campaign and all of you who've supported me. Time, day, and location is obviously TBD, but I want to throw a casual DIY party or little show at a bar, possibly get some friends to play with me. This would be in the NYC area.
$1500 - Actual Legit CDs
The Physical Deluxe (which I regrettably didn't call "The Bootleg Edition") is super fun and all, but I'd love to press a run of legitimate CDs. This means full artwork, liner notes, jewel cases, the works. It would be a run of 100 CDs for the time being, and I will add a reward option for it. All backers will get a thank you shout out printed either in the liner notes or on the inside cover of the CD.
Woof. That's a lot. Now let's crush these stretch goals!! Please keep sharing this campaign, the lyric video for 'Cowboys', and my Twitter/Instagram. If we can crush $500 in 9 hours, we can definitely crush $1500 in 30 days. <3
This has been a project that I’ve poured literal blood, sweat, and tears into, and I’m so incredibly excited to share it with everyone soon. I hope you consider backing! I think there are a lot of fun, cool perks that come with your support, and I'd love to send you some music early and throw a little show for you. Plus, I really need to thin out my record collection.
If you have any questions, or just want to chat, go throw me a follow on Twitter via @arwingsmusic.
Thank you for listening.
I love you.
Risks and challenges
As I mentioned, I'm close to nailing that late summer/early fall release. But my biggest challenge is being able to accept that it's truly finished. That's where this Kickstarter will really help.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)