Greetings Kickstarter Friends! Let's make some MAGIC!!!!!
Hi! If we don't know each other already, my name is Kristen Ford, and I am a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, looper, and one woman band who is head over heels in love with creating, crafting, performing, and sharing music.
I've been making records since 2008, and this winter I'm headed into the recording studio to make my fourth, full-length album and my first studio album since 2014!
I have been busy playing about 150 shows a year, whether as a solo act, with a backing band, or in my hip-hop group, The Blu Janes. Life is crazy and fun! I've performed coast to coast in the USA, throughout Europe, South America, and sometimes even at home in Nashville, Tennessee.
So here's the deal. I'm making a new record! Over the past 5 years, I have learned so much about live performance, collaboration, and songwriting. I've been doing co-writes in Nashville and getting feedback from professional songwriters. I've gone so much deeper with my guitar playing, looping, and harmonies after hundreds of shows and higher profile festivals, and by touring listening rooms across Germany.
I made past albums, like Rend & Render and Tighten it Up by live looping in studio. I recorded Travel Songs all myself at home. For free. But for this album, I am raising the bar! I have plans to work in 3 different studios across the country (how else would I roll!?) as well as hire a cast of super talented musicians, a full band, and great producers who can help take my vision to the next level.
So what’s my vision? I can't give away too much, but I have a concept album in mind - a journey from found to lost to found again - songs hyper-personal, yet universal, exploring love, life, passion, one's calling, disillusionment, purpose. Grandiose stuff! I have about 15 songs in mind for this concept, and a backlog of 40 or so other tunes that may be dropped into the mix.
The result will be a cohesive album, released for the first time ever on Vinyl (as well as every other format one might use to enjoy music)! There will also be an instrumental version of the record, and for the deluxe and fan exclusive release, a pile of B-sides and demos from the mountain of songs I’ll comb through for best possible fit: a bridge from this tune, a riff from that one, a change of words to this verse to pair it with that chorus...it's going to be an adventure for sure!
Before heading into the studio, I will be playing these songs and road testing them with different configurations as a solo artist, with a band, or live looping to ensure I've got the best possible feel and vibe for each one.
So folks! $20,000 is the goal! Here's where those funds are going:
-Studio time in world class studios in Nashville, Minneapolis, and Massachusetts
-Hiring the best possible team of producers, engineers, and musicians (Brett Bullion and June Millington)
-Mixing and Mastering
-Stunning album art from Black Wolf Arts (feathered dinosaurs and outer space themes have been discussed) on the vinyl, stickers, T shirts and more.
-Manufacturing of merchandise, Vinyl Records (bucket list!!), CDs, T shirt printing, Digital distribution
-Produce an epic music video from director Michelle Ehlen (abandoned zoos and urban apocalypse themes have been discussed)
-Reward fulfillment, packaging and shipping (plenty of caffeinated beverages to get that done).
Any funds left over, or should we exceed our goal, will go right into Marketing for the record.
This may include
-A publicist to reach out to blogs, magazines, and streaming playlists
-Social media advertising
-College and alternative radio promotion
-Tour support (you KNOW I'm going to be on the road here, there and everywhere)
This new album is going to be epic! I can't wait to share it with you, and I hope you'll be part of the process. The rewards are amazing! There will be a covers record of whatever song you want! Tour the studio! Vinyl records, T-shirts and all the great things in life!
This is your chance to help make some more magic in the world. If you can give a few bucks, if you can share this campaign, if you can get together with some friends or buy a reward for someone else, let's do this!
Let's make something not because it's easy, but because we love it and we want more of it! Thank you, thank you!
11/24 Update! I'm stoked to announce that Brett Bullion out of Minneapolis will be producing and mixing several tracks on this album, we will record in his studio with some awesome musicians who play in some of my favorite bands. Brett's sound is one I am a huge fan of. Synth-heavy, indie, pop, avant-garde, electronic friendly, and simple drum parts that feel huge. His skills and ear as a producer are going to be a great fit with my earthy, guitar driven tunes.
Brett Bullion has also worked with such bands as Now Now, Bad Bad Hats, Chastity Brown, Allison Weiss, Low and for such labels as Sub Pop, Trans-Records, No Sleep and Rainy Day Records.
I am over the moon to announce that music legend June Millington will be collaborating, arranging and performing on several of the albums tracks. June Millington was in the band Fanny, the first all female group to be signed to a major label and who ruled the California rock scene of the early 1970s. Scoring performances all over the world, on The Tonight Showand Sonny and Cher, she is a true electric guitar and women's music pioneer.
"Fanny was extraordinary... they're as important as anybody else who's ever been, ever; it just wasn't their time." - David Bowie
As a solo artist, guitarist, producer and arranger June has worked with such artists as Barbra Streisand, Cris Williamson, Bitch and Animal, Tret Fure and Naia Kete to name a few, and such labels as Warner Bros, Olivia and Righteous Babe Records.
I first met June when I was 15 years old attending the IMA's Rock n Roll girls camp. Since then, June has been a major influence on my playing and development, she produced my 2008 debut Filthy Nasty, we have shared the stage at National Women's Music festival- (no pressure) playing with Guitar Player Magazine's "hottest female guitarist in the music industry."
I am so thrilled to head back to Western Massachusetts to record at the Institute for the Musical Arts, in their seriously epic recording studio which has slowly taken over the "big red barn" where we made my first album and I spent many late nights learning to play the guitar, and many frantic moments trying to keep up with the teacher who so graciously shared her secrets.
Here's what a one-woman- looping-band live in the studio looks like! (and a $0 budget music video!)
Here's my last single, recorded, performed, filmed all for $0 by yours truly! Just imagine with a Kickstarter budget!
The last time we were here (2014!) The Kickstarter funds went towards making the album Dinosaur and this tune "El Camino" which has opened some serious doors for me, interest from a german label (who booked my last tour of Germany), a deal as a writer with SESAC and festival bookings! Thank you! Let's keep it up for this next album.
Collaboration is awesome! Here's a song I co-wrote with Dianne Davidson, recorded in Nashville at Left Plus Right Studio with a full band.
Thank you for sharing! Thank you for listening! Thank you for giving! Viva la Musica!
Risks and challenges
I don't feel too much risk heading into the studio to make album number 4. I feel fairly experienced. It's wonderful to focus on music full time, and I know I can make this album my priority and get it done right!
One challenge is potential involvement with a label. Should they decide to pick up this album and have different ideas about release timeline, the fulfillment dates may shift from where they currently stand. But rest assured, the content is going to be great, and I'm going to get it to you as quickly as possible! And I will certainly stay in touch as the recording and release process unfolds.
Another challenge is "option overload" with so many songs being considered. But I trust my team of producers and studio magic makers to choose 10-15 great songs. The ones that don't make it will make stellar content for B-sides and the "Deluxe" record!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (24 days)