This project is very simple: record a collection of songs at Honeytone Studio with some accomplished comrades.
Instead of calling myself an independent musician (which, by industry standards, is true) I am truly dependent on many factors.
I depend on my early education in music in a household of singers; rehearsing, recording, and performing live with my family (the Hebl Family Singers).
I depend on a formidable community of midwest musicians who have toured the world and yet continue to call Wisconsin and Minnesota 'home'.
I depend on your support and your genuine desire to hear what comes of this deeply inspired collaborative effort.
Hemma is the moniker I use to write the songs that will be featured on this debut EP. Swedish for 'at home', Hemma happened to be a nickname I carried with me through my high school experience at boarding school in New Hampshire. Having been scattered throughout the US and Canada since the age of 14, the act of songwriting has been a fervent gravity that keeps me grounded in the feeling that I know to be linked to the landscape and vibration of my childhood home.
The band formed when the chance to open for the Minneapolis-based Cactus Blossoms arose at a new venue in Eau Claire called The Metro. It was clear from the downbeat of the pre-show rehearsal that this 4-piece outfit had the power to bring these songs to new life.
On the ever expressive Pedal Steel and Synthesizer is the inimitable Ben Lester. I met Ben outside of the House of Rock a handful of years back (my sister and I were dazzled to meet the drummer for A.A. Bondy). Lo and behold - Ben has become a staple player on the Eau Claire scene and a good friend to boot. Playing with groups like Aero Flynn, Mike Perry and the Longbeds, the Tallest Man On Earth, S. Carey, it's clear that Ben's sensitivity and versatility as a musician can span many genres. We are honored that Ben has enthusiastically agreed to join the crew for this album. His work includes the following albums:
All records by S Carey
Carrie and Lowell by Sufjan Stevens (2015)
Believers by AA Bondy (2011)
Marigolden by Field Report (2014)
Songs from a Tin Can by Chris Hadfield (an astronaught !!!) (2015)
Pat Kuehn is far and away the most fun bassist to work with. His attention to detail is counterbalanced by his rowdy antics and there's literally never a dull moment with this dude. I met Pat in Eau Claire while I was home on a break from a boarding high school in New Hampshire. He was studying in Boston at the New England Conservatory at the time. Since, we have toured together the better half of America, he's been involved countless projects including Humbird and Ian Sweet, working his tail off on his solo project - Pat Keen. Check him out! The dude does not stop! Check out his work at the link below the photo!
An engineer has the pivotal task of translating live sound into a recorded artifact and there's really no one I trust more than Brian Joseph. A household name in the Indie music production world, he's worked with the Indigo Girls, Bon Iver and FOG to name a few. Over the years, Brian has graciously upheld the capacity to bring out the best in the artist. Beyond the accolades, Brian's reputation precedes him -- a generous, genuine, huge-hearted, hilarious dude. There's no one I'd rather have at the helm. The Hemma Helm. His studio - The Hive - is located in Eau Claire and he's always up to something great so, cheers Brian! (It's truly baffling that you chose to live in Eau Claire of all places. We are astoundingly lucky to have you.) Check out his work at the link below the photo!
Last and a true catalyst-- my producer, Shane Leonard. In this era of the independent music market, one needs a catalyst in order to go it alone. A springboard, a spark, a motivating force. Someone to say "Hey, let's make this happen". I'm fairly certain that no one believes in Hemma more than Shane right now. When I'm having my doubts, Shane is there to reassure me that this project is worth the time and resources. As a musician, he has nearly devoured the teachings of traditional folk and Appalachian music and his hunger for knowledge and participation in musical engagements appears insatiable. He's not only producing the album but acting as assistant engineer and our 4th instrumentalist. Like I said, insatiable. Check out his work at the link below the photo!
About the studio:
"Honeytone is a state of the art recording studio built into a beautiful victorian mansion. Our collection of instruments, microphones and recording equipment is extensive and reflects our deep commitment to quality. Our space is warm, unique and inspiring - Honeytone is a home away from home with comfortable lodging on location.
Our goal is to bring together the very best in vintage and modern production philosophy to create recordings of the highest possible quality. Our engineers are friendly and patient, emphasizing thoughtfulness over expediency in capturing a custom recording. From pre-production to finished mix, we look forward to assisting in bringing any part of your next project to life."
Honeytone was founded by producer-engineers
Patrick Boland, Marty Brueggemann and Mark Zbikowski.
"The collaborators who run Honeytone Studios... they've built this smorgasbord with everything at your fingertips to make great sounds, and are incredibly meticulous and thoughtful. They put all their energy and focus in facilitating this music - I can't even express how valuable that is" - J.E. Sunde, (Cartouche Records) Minneapolis, MN
$10,000 breaks down into:
$1500 on-site lodging, access to lots of cool stuff, and an assistant engineer
$7150 pays the musicians and engineer a living wage (also," 7-1-5", Eau Claire area code!)
$300 rehearsal fees at a deal!
$300 sustainable, small business supported meals for the session.
$750 mixing the album! what a steal!
Surplus to Support Women/Womyn/Femme Identifying Audio Engineers, Performing Artists and the next generation of sound technicians.
The exciting thing is that, through this process, Hannah becomes closer to inhabiting the space of audio engineer / performing artist in an industry that holds less than 5% of its space for female identifying persons. It's helpful for her to feel supported in male-dominated spheres and to have the doors open for any task from choosing microphones to the mixing intricacies, she can count on this team to include her in the decisions that she holds near and dear. She is determined to apprentice in the midst of performing the album because of her innate hunger to hone this craft and garner respect as a female audio producer, engineer, and songwriter.
If funding goals are exceeded, Hannah would like to donate the surplus to an organization that helps womyn of all ages and stages of life enter into the audio world with confidence and prowess. This organization may already exist locally but she is also looking into modeling a program for the Twin Cities Metro area after a San Francisco-based only-recording-studio-in-the-world-built-and-run-by-women called Women's Audio Mission that holds camps, audio engineering classes, and overall gives womyn and young girls access to a recording studio. Women's Audio Mission -- learn more at the website!
She is confident that she has chosen a team that will flow at a pace that is both productive and promotive of her ability to cultivate a knowledge-base that hasn't always been so readily accessible in her experience as a female musician. She looks forward to having more womyn/femme identifying folks in her crew for the next project. She wants to express how deeply encouraging and respectful each member of this team is, always.
Exceedingly excited and eternally grateful for the musical connection that we share,
Risks and challenges
Can’t think of many risks or challenges...Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)