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Alone Rewinding is a book and an album. They both tell the story of my last 20-ish years raising my daughter and making music.
315 backers pledged $28,338 to help bring this project to life.

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(UPDATE): Okay, it's the last week of the book/album project! The other night, for the first time, I played a set comprised of songs I'm thinking of for the book's structure, in chronological order, connecting them with narrative as I went along. I ended with a couple of brand new songs. It all felt perfect.

It gave me an(other) idea: if we can get up to 300-ish people involved in this project, I'll book a special recording session with a full band made up of friends and collaborators. We'll record at least 9 songs from over the years/bands, that we'll all choose together, plus at least one brand new song. Everyone involved (that's you) will get a copy of whatever we make, along with everything else you want. It might be interesting to write about the studio experience while being in a session. Mostly, tho, it'll just be yet another collective adventure. So, let's see what we can do! Any level, doesn't matter. I just figure the more of us, the merrier.

No matter what, I'm going to give this book all I've got. I don't take for granted the time, energy and money it will take to make it happen. More importantly, I'll never take yr trust and kindness for granted.

Onward, with love.

Jonah 
http://jonahmatranga.com

---

I want Alone Rewinding to be as interactive, communal and personal as possible. Anyone that supports this project will have access to all sorts of archival audio and video footage that I dig up as I work on the book and the album. I’ll also share semi-regular podcasts comprised of observations and conversations that occur over the course of creating Alone Rewinding. As I work on everything over the next several months, I’d love to hear any questions and/or suggestions you have about the book, the album, anything. Everyone that chooses to be a part of this project will be sincerely and happily acknowledged in the credits and otherwise (only if you want to be, of course). Alright, here we go…

THE BOOK

Fun fact: my nickname growing up was Bookman. Books have forever (and especially before music came along) been a much-needed refuge for me. I’ve dreamt of writing books of all sorts, for pretty literally my whole life. For so many reasons, this seems the perfect place, time, and way to finally dig in and make it happen. Alone Rewinding will be a collection of reflections on growing up, fatherhood, and playing music for a living, among many other things. It will feature conversations and recollections from people from all parts of my life; family & friends, fellow artists, people I’ve worked with and gotten to know through the music, people that have listened to the music, come to the shows, given me rides and places to stay, and let me and the music into their lives in so many ways. Through those conversations, I’ll address attempting to be a sustainable touring musician and a decent dad at the same time, how touring has affected my relationships for better and for worse, the stories of how various bands came together and fell apart, how major labels and indie labels and DIY and everything in between really works, how touring works and feels whether it’s in a bus or in basements, how to stay happy in what can sometimes feel like a a happiness-crushing world… you know, little things like that. As with everything I've ever made, I want Alone Rewinding to help me through -- and whatever’s going on in yr life, I want to it to help you through, too.

THE ALBUM

To accompany the book, I’ll be recording a collection of the songs that have meant the most to me over the years. I’m looking forward to re-meeting the music as I write the book. Each chapter of Alone Rewinding will be based around a song. I’m sure I’ll talk about the song itself some, of course. More than that, though, I’ll use the songs as jumping-off points, the proverbial breadcrumbs, little flags in the earth of wherever I was at the time. I’ll use memories of writing, performing and releasing the songs to help remember where I was living, who I was hanging out with, who I was in love with (and vice versa), who I was pissed off at (and vice versa), other songs that were happening at the time, any other ideas that were on my mind, just whatever comes up. I’ll look at where the songs led me, what they taught me. Through the songs as signposts, I’ll retrace my steps. Through the book, I’ll hear and feel the songs in whole new ways. I hope that people familiar with the songs will be affected in similar ways, and I hope that the combination of mediums will be illuminating to anyone reading and listening, no matter what their familiarity is with the music.

THE WORK

Aside from the immense amount of writing and editing and all that will be needed to make Alone Rewinding real, this project is also going to involve singing and recording (for the accompanying selection of songs), learning how to self-publish a high-quality book in both physical and digital forms, speaking intelligibly enough to record an audiobook (I'm particularly excited about that part), creating and distributing podcasts made of interesting conversations and reflections that happen along the way, and who knows what else. It’s definitely the most complex, long-term, emotionally and logistically challenging project I’ve ever taken on. I’m scared of all of it, and looking forward to all of it, and incredibly grateful for yr support as I see it through.

I know that writing and releasing Alone Rewinding isn’t something I can do by myself. Knowing that and saying it out loud is pretty much just as scary as the idea of writing the book itself. I’ve tended to be a pretty insular and self-sufficient creature, for better and for worse. Songs kind of lend themselves to that. They’re relatively small and contained, all about impulse and imagination, and pretty easily written (and released) alone. I’ve made a safe little world for myself with music, and while of course I love it, the scale of this project, all the unexplored terrain… it’s just overwhelming. Through the haze of self-doubt, I really like that feeling. Even if it was a novel or something like that, I could just hide in my imagination for a while and come up with something, but as far as I can tell, to really tell a decent truth about what’s actually happened requires reaching out. I don’t just want to hear from myself, about myself, for myself. I don’t think that makes for a clear and whole picture. I want to hear what other people heard and saw and felt over the last bunch of years; about me, about the music, about themselves. I guess even if I could figure it all out on my own, that just doesn’t interest me at this point in my life. It feels really good to feel and write that.

THE REASONS

I think it’s really important to tell our stories as honestly as we can. I know that I’ve loved hearing and reading the stories of other people. Some of them have led lives kinda close to mine, some super-different. Just like with the songs, I’m not under any self-important illusions that the world needs to hear what I have to say in any mystical way. I just really like making things and sharing them.

Beyond the ideas themselves, my favorite thing is all the conversations that can happen within the creation of ideas, and then all the conversations that can come from ideas after they get out into the world. The community that’s evolved around the music has pretty literally kept me going, on logistical and emotional levels both. I’m looking for ALONE REWINDING to be a serious celebration of the infinite ways that music can become part of people's lives, and that lives can become part of music. I want to tell stories of the kindness I've received from countless people, from close relatives to relative strangers. I want yr questions, recollections and suggestions to be as much a part of it as mine. I’m looking forward to talking to people I’ve shared this adventure with in various ways, whether it's someone that I haven't talked to in way too long, or someone I meet as I make ALONE REWINDING. I'm so curious as to what will happen as I talk with people from bands I’ve been in and toured with, industry folks I’ve worked with (from local promoters to big managers and heads of labels), the people and families that have allowed me to be part of their weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, memorials, so many amazing occasions… and speaking of all this, I definitely want Alone Rewinding to include lots of you. I want to know what YOU want to know about, and I want yr help in illuminating so many dark and forgotten corners of my crowded, confused mind and memory.

I’ve known for a while that I’ll never be able to truly say how grateful I am that anyone has cared about any of this, much less helped me to make it happen. I often say at shows that I hope the songs and the energy I give to singing them shows my gratitude. In this case, I want the book -- and all of the time, energy and resources I’m going to give to writing it -- to be a reminder that I’ll never take for granted the fact that yr belief in me as an artist (and as a person) has supported me and saved me in ways I’ll likely never understand, much less be able to express properly. I will never stop trying.

Thank You.

Jonah Matranga, San Francisco, 1 Nov 2015

Risks and challenges

I'm going to be in a lot of unknown territory with this project, from writing the book itself, to figuring out DIY publishing stuff, to who-knows-what. That said, part of the whole point of this book is to talk about (and figure out) how I've been able to make a modest living making stuff, which has everything to do with letting in ideas, making them real, sharing them with people, making agreements, and following through. Fears and insecurities aside, I do know that I'm good at this. I've been following through for a long time now. I will not flake on you. For real.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $9 or more About $9

    VOTE OF CONFIDENCE: If you just want to support me in this idea and whatever else happens in this strange life, it's forever very (veryveryveryvery) appreciated. You can chip in as much whatever feels right for you. For every extra dollar you give, somewhere a little rocker angel writes his first song, and/or plays her first shredding guitar solo.

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    JUST THE MUSIC, CD-STYLE: If you're not into the book idea, and you are into an intimate recording of a whole lotta songs that have meant a whole lot to me over the last 20-ish years, this is for you. You'll get a limited-edition CD featuring all the songs that come to mind as I write the book, signed and dedicated to you or anyone you like, along with liner notes containing lyrics, chords, and thoughts on the songs.

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    JUST THE MUSIC, DIGITAL-STYLE: If you're not into the book idea, and you are into an intimate recording of a whole lotta songs that have meant a whole lot to me over the last 20-ish years, AND you like avoiding shipping costs, then THIS is for you. You'll get a hi-res download of all the music I make as I write the book, along with some thoughts on their origins, the lyrics, and whatever else comes to mind.

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    Pledge $36 or more About $36

    THE ACTUAL BOOK! (AND THE MUSIC) (AND A BOOKMARK): This will get you a copy of the BOOK, signed and/or dedicated to you or whomever you like, with a badass lil’ specially designed BOOKMARK to keep yr place. You'll also get the book as an E-BOOK to be read in any digital way you like, and also as an AUDIOBOOK, read by yrs truly... along with a CD and download of the ALBUM.

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    THE BOOK AND THE MUSIC, DIGITAL-STYLE: For folks not into physical things (and/or shipping costs), this will get you the BOOK in digital form, and also as an AUDIOBOOK, read by yrs truly... along with a download of the ALBUM.

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    THE MUSIC AND A T-SHIRT (OR TOTE BAG), BECAUSE DIY ROCK TRADITION: Again, for anyone not into the book, you'll get the ALBUM on CD and a T-SHIRT or TOTE BAG made especially for this project.

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    ALONE REWINDING, USB-STYLE: For those that love sassy gadgets (and minimal shipping costs), I’ll send you a custom-designed USB drive that will be made especially for this project. While it be pocket-sized and disarmingly cute, it will arrive with so much loaded onto it: the BOOK in its digital forms (as an E-BOOK and as an AUDIOBOOK read by me), the ALBUM, all the PODCASTS that get made, and some choice bonus video and audio from the archives. It'll be compatible with all computers, and you'll be able to use and reuse it for all yr portable storage needs down the line.

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    *HAND-DELIVERY STYLE*

    THE ACTUAL BOOK! (AND THE MUSIC) (AND A BOOKMARK): This will get you a copy of the BOOK, signed and/or dedicated to you or whomever you like, with a badass lil’ specially designed BOOKMARK to keep yr place. You'll also get the book as an E-BOOK to be read in any digital way you like, and also as an AUDIOBOOK, read by yrs truly... along with a CD and download of the ALBUM.

    *PLEASE ONLY CHOOSE THIS SHIPPING-FREE OPTION IF YOU'RE PRETTY SURE WE'LL SEE EACH OTHER SOON, AND/OR YOU LIVE CLOSE BY*

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    BOOK AND VINYL, PURE-STYLE: For those that love books and vinyl and keepin things simple, I’ll send you the BOOK (in physical and digital forms) and a special selection of the MUSIC on sweet, sweet vinyl, along with a download of all the music that doesn’t fit on the vinyl (ah, the limitations of physical things). Before the vinyl is pressed, you'll be able to vote (if you want to) on which songs you want to be included for sure on the vinyl.

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    Pledge $90 or more About $90

    *EARLYBIRD* ALL-IN COMBO PACK: This is the one. You’ll get a signed copy of the BOOK, the ALBUM on CD or VINYL (or both if you want), the CUSTOM USB drive with the EBOOK and AUDIOBOOK and some bonus audio and video from the archives, a SHIRT or TOTE BAG (yr choice), the BOOKMARK, and any other cool stuff that gets made along the way. For anyone that jumps in at this level or the ones that follow it, I'll also make you a MIX of songs by other people that have influenced me in various ways as an artist and as a person. Beyond all that, if you have other ideas that you think would be fun for this one (or any of them), lemme know, I'm sure we can make good things happen.

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    3x BOOKS AND MUSIC GIFT-PACK: If you want the BOOK and the ALBUM for yrself and a couple extras to give as gifts, this will get you 3 copies of the book dedicated to you or anyone you want, along with 3 CDs of the ALBUM, and plenty of other lil treats to keep and/or give to great people.

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    HAND-WRITTEN LYRICS: I’ll happily hand-write the lyrics for any song that’s meant something to you, along with a dedication to you or someone you want to give a gift to. It’ll arrive mounted and ready for display and/or framing. You’ll also get a signed copy of the BOOK, and the ALBUM on yr choice of CD or VINYL.

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    HANDMADE HEARTS: Since I’m trying my hand at various mediums with this project, I’ll draw you a heart/question (which pretty much means ‘I love ideas’, among other things), along with a dedication to you or someone you want to give a gift to. It’ll arrive mounted and ready for display and/or framing. You’ll also get a signed copy of the BOOK in all its forms, and the ALBUM on CD or VINYL.

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    PHONE PHUN: People have dug this kinda thing before, so if you’d like to do anything neat like have me call someone on their birthday or you want to chat sometime or any fun stuff like that, this will make that happen. We can get creative with this one. You’ll also get a signed copy of the BOOK, and the ALBUM on CD or VINYL, and treats.

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    *HAND-DELIVERY STYLE*

    *EARLYBIRD* ALL-IN COMBO PACK: This is the one. You’ll get a signed copy of the BOOK, the ALBUM on CD or VINYL (or both if you want), the CUSTOM USB drive with the EBOOK and AUDIOBOOK and some bonus audio and video from the archives, a SHIRT or TOTE BAG (yr choice), the BOOKMARK, and any other cool stuff that gets made along the way. For anyone that jumps in at this level or the ones that follow it, I'll also make you a MIX of songs by other people that have influenced me in various ways as an artist and as a person. Beyond all that, if you have other ideas that you think would be fun for this one (or any of them), lemme know, I'm sure we can make good things happen.

    *PLEASE ONLY CHOOSE THIS SHIPPING-FREE OPTION IF YOU'RE PRETTY SURE WE'LL SEE EACH OTHER SOON, AND/OR YOU LIVE CLOSE BY*

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    Pledge $108 or more About $108

    $108-ish ALL-IN COMBO PACK: You’ll get a signed copy of the BOOK, the ALBUM on CD or VINYL, the CUSTOM USB drive containing the E-BOOK and AUDIOBOOK, bonus audio and video from the archives, a SHIRT or TOTE BAG, the BOOKMARK, and any other cool stuff that gets made along the way. And if you have other ideas that you think would be fair & fun for this one (or any of them), lemme know, I'm sure we can make fun stuff happen.

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    HANDMADE-STYLE COMBO PACK: If you like handmade and personal stuff, this is for you. You’ll get the BOOK in all it's forms, the MUSIC on CD and/or VINYL and/or USB (and as a download), a SHIRT or TOTE, yr choice of HAND-WRITTEN LYRICS, a HANDMADE HEART PICTURE, a PHONE-RELATED somethin of yr choice... and any other cool stuff that gets made along the way. And if you have ideas that you think would be fair & fun, lemme know, I'm sure we can make fun stuff happen.

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    A UNIQUE RECORDING FOR YOU (OR SOMEONE ELSE): Some of you know that I’ve been making Unique Recordings for years (http://jonahmatranga.com/yard-sale/unique-recordings.html). I love them so much. I’ll make a recording of any song you love (whether I wrote it or not), dedicated to you or anyone you want. you’ll also get the BOOK in all its forms, the ALBUM on CD, VINYL or USB, and lotsa little treats.

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    9-BOOK GIFT PACK : If you want the BOOK and the ALBUM for yrself, and a bunch of copies of each to give as gifts, this will get you 9 copies of the BOOK, dedicated to you or anyone you want, along with 9 signed copies of the ALBUM on CD, plus lotsa treats.

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    Pledge $360 or more About $360

    UNIQUE COMBO PACK: If you like personalization and interaction, you'll be in to this. You’ll get the BOOK in all it's forms, the ALBUM on CD and/or VINYL and/or USB, a SHIRT, the TOTE BAG, the HAND-WRITTEN LYRICS, a HANDMADE HEART PICTURE, a PHONE-RELATED somethin of yr choice, a UNIQUE RECORDING, and any other cool stuff that gets made along the way. You’ll also be listed on a SPECIAL THANKS PAGE in the book for people that went above and beyond to help Alone Rewinding happen. And if you have other ideas that you think would make this badass deal even better, lemme know.

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    STORY/MUSIC/CREATIVITY SUPPORT: If you want support in making YOUR idea real, I'd love to work with you on that. Along with a copy of the BOOK in all its forms and the ALBUM on yr choice of CD, VINYL or USB (or all three), I’ll work with you to get yr creative juices flowing, whether it’s towards a song, a book, something else entirely, or just to get and stay inspired. If we can meet in person, we will. If not, we’ll talk or Skype or whatever makes sense and feels fun for all. You’ll also be listed on a special thanks page in the book for people that went above and beyond to help Alone Rewinding happen.

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    LIVE MUSIC IN YR LIFE (REGIONAL): Live music can be such a great way to make gatherings of so many sorts that much more special. I'd love to a part of yrs. I’ll come to yr house (or any place you choose within a couple hundred miles of San Francisco) to sing, read, talk and have fun. If it’s a long-ish drive, I might ask for a little extra gas money and a place to crash, we’ll work it out in fun and fair ways. I'll bring along a copy of the BOOK in all its forms, and the MUSIC on CD and/or VINYL and/or USB, a SHIRT, a TOTE BAG, and other random treats. You’ll also be listed on a special thanks page in the book for people that went above and beyond to help Alone Rewinding happen.

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    HOUSE-ISH SHOW COMBO PACK: I will come to yr house -- or anywhere in the whole wide world that you think would make for a fun show. I'll sing, and maybe read some if that feels fun. I'll bring BOOKS and MUSIC on CD and/or VINYL and/or USB for you and yr family/friends (up to 9-ish copies). You pay travel, we'll work it out in a simple and reasonable way. You’ll also be listed on a special thanks page in the book for people that went above and beyond to help it happen. And seriously, as it starts gettin to these lofty levels, trust me when I say that I’m open to ANY ideas (get yr mind outta the gutter haha).

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    LIKE A BOSS COMBO PACK: At this point, we can really start gettin creative, so if you have ideas, I want to hear them. No matter what, I'll come to you anywhere in the world to sing and read and hang. I'll bring as many copies of the BOOK as you want, similarly plentiful copies of the MUSIC on CD and/or VINYL and/or USB, SHIRTS (or TOTES) for all, HAND-WRITTEN LYRICS to yr favorite song, a HANDMADE HEART PICTURE, a PHONE-RELATED somethin of yr choice, a UNIQUE RECORDING, and any other cool stuff that gets made along the way. You’ll also be listed on a special thanks page in the book for people that went above and beyond to help it happen. And remember, I’m extra-open to creativity if you’re this open to being this great.

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    EVERYTHING EVER: We’re up in the supersweet stratosphere now. If you’ve got the loot and/or the generosity to support me and my art to this degree, you’ll pretty much get as much as you want of whatever you want, whether it’s something I’ve made in the past, the present, the future, whatever. Anyone that chips in like this is on the guest list forever, gets free stuff forever... it pretty much makes us family. For real. If you’re curious about making amazing stuff happen, let me know anytime and we’ll make it so. You’ll also be listed on a special thanks page in the book for people that went above and beyond to help Alone Rewinding happen.

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    EVERYTHINGER EVERER: Just like what I said right up there, except more. I believe in the possibility of someone wanting to hook me up like this in a way that feels fair and fun for all involved. Want to come stay in my little apartment in San Francisco (or have me come to you) and I'll babysit yr kids and give them music lessons and help you write yr book and give you a massage and make you dinner and give you my endearingly beat-up car and my endearingly beat-up guitar and help you make tough decisions and write and play songs for and with you and...? You get the idea. You’ll also be listed on a special thanks page in the book for people that went above and beyond to help it all happen.

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Funding period

- (36 days)