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Laura Kemp and Sean Peterson are The Liaisons.  Help a folkie and a musicologist make their first CD of all jazz standards!
Laura Kemp and Sean Peterson are The Liaisons.  A folkie and a musicologist are making their first CD of all jazz standards!
Laura Kemp and Sean Peterson are The Liaisons.  A folkie and a musicologist are making their first CD of all jazz standards!
116 backers pledged $5,630 to help bring this project to life.

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The Liaisons: a new twist on the old standards

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Thanks so much for checking out our Kickstarter page!  

My name is  Laura Kemp, and I am half of the jazz standards duo, The Liaisons.  My partner in crime is bassist, Sean Peterson, and we are creating our first album together!  I have been performing and making records for 25 years, and this will be my first CD that is all jazz standards (the previous 6 were in the singer-songwriter folk / bluegrass / acoustic vein).  Sean is a phd student in musicology at the University of Oregon and recently finished his masters in jazz performance on bass, as well as his first instrumental jazz CD.

Why are we making this record?

We've been playing together as The Liaisons for four years, having a blast reinterpreting these old standards, and folks have been asking us for a CD!!  We truly feel we have something unique to offer these songs, and as artists, that's what you do - you make records of your art, be it a painting, a sculpture, a book, a photograph, or a CD.  Plus, 15 years ago when I started exploring jazz I told myself I'd put out a standards album by the time I hit 50.  Time is closing in on me and I have less than a year to achieve that goal!!!   

What songs will we be recording?

We have chosen a dozen or so standards that we love to play. If you'd like to be the sponsor of a song, email me for the list of tunes and you may pick your favorite from the list and be it's sponsor and dedicate it in the liner notes to someone you love.  If your fave isn't on the list, you may commission us to learn and record it for the album (and dedicate it to your loved one!)  See the rewards for more information!!!

Who will be playing on the recording?

This is definitely not your typical jazz album - for one, there is no piano player and no drummer - just me and Sean and a couple horn players. I've been playing guitar for over 40 years and am really a folkie at heart, so our interpretations are a little different than most. I am playing all the rhythm guitar parts (and even taking a couple solos!) and Sean is joining in on a few vocals as well as playing the bass (and taking a few solos as well!) We'll be featuring Tony Glausi on trumpet, cornet, and flugel horn, and Paul Biondi on saxophones and flute. The horns add that vintage element, reminiscent of old Ella and Louis recordings (which are some of my favorites!) We want to create something that you'll put on while cooking up a yummy meal with friends, cracking open a bottle of wine, perhaps inspiring you to take your partner's hand and do a little dance in the kitchen... something upbeat, but not in your face, mellow, but not too melancholy. We want to do justice to these amazing old songs, with interpretations that would make the composers smile.

Where are we recording this album?

We have already begun tracking at Gung Ho Studio in Eugene, with engineer/producer, Billy Barnett.  Part of the reason we really wanted to record at Gung Ho Studio with Billy Barnett, is because we are making a record that is completely stripped down and exposed.  Billy has amazing gear and ears - we know we'll walk out of there with something we (and hopefully YOU) will love! Also, I recorded my 2nd and 3rd albums at Gung Ho Studio (back in the 90's) and I've been itching to get back in there ever since...

Why a Kickstarter Campaign???

Making a record in a studio is a spendy undertaking... we are two people doing our best to bring beauty and music into the world.  We are fortunate enough to be able to feed ourselves off of our music, through teaching and performing, but paying for an album is a completely different ball of wax.  Most of the time we don't see profits and are lucky if we can at least cover the costs.  What are those costs?

I've saved up $6000 over the past 4 years, mostly from sales off my last album, Bodhi Tree.  That will cover the studio time at Gung Ho, so we know that we'll be able to get the songs recorded and mixed.

We are setting our kick starter goal at the bare minimum of $5000 to cover the rest of the costs: mastering the CD, musician and publishing fees, graphic design, photography and manufacturing 1000 discs.  Of course, we are hoping to far exceed that goal in order to pay for the entire album and have some left over for promoting it! We also have to factor in the Kickstarter fees  which average around 8-10% of what we raise.

When will it be ready to ship?

The plan is to release it by Valentine's Day!!! That way you can plan ahead if you'd like to surprise your sweetheart with a CD that has a song on it dedicated to them!!

Risks and challenges

We are 100% committed to getting this album finished. I have successfully recorded and released 6 CD's which in many ways were much more complicated than this one (lots of musicians to herd, recording in Nashville during the worst flood the city had seen in decades, recording at home and having the computer crash and spending 2 weeks thinking the whole project was lost - just to name a few...) I don't foresee any big obstacles in the way of this one, and I am confident that whatever comes up, we'll be able to manage!

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    THE DOWNLOAD: get the digital download of the new Liaisons CD before it is released!

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    THE BASIC: A copy of the new Liaisons CD and the early digital download; let us know if you want your CD signed!

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    Pledge $45 or more About $45

    THE VARIETY PACK: A copy of the new Liaisons CD and the early digital download AND a copy of Sean’s new jazz instrumental CD, “Let it Show” AND your pick of one of Laura’s songwriter CD’s (Bodhi Tree and May are still in print; Alone, Corduroy, or Volcano will have to be burned for you off Laura’s computer.)

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    THE CHARTS: Laura’s handwritten charts of the songs on the album, in a pdf format that will be emailed to you, or printed out and sent with your CD if you’d prefer. She’s been told the charts are “quaint” ☺ Includes THE BASIC package as well.

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    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    THE TRIPLE PACK: this is the BASIC times 3, for those of you who want to give out the new CD for gifts and keep one for yourself! We’ll even send a greeting card out to your loved ones letting them know it will be arriving sometime in the early part of the new year. Let us know who the other discs and cards should be sent to!

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    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    SKYPE LESSON WITH LK: One 50 minute skype guitar lesson with Laura AND her handwritten charts of the songs from the CD, in pdf format. Here’s your opportunity to ask her any questions about how to play those weird jazz chords on the guitar! Includes the new Liaisons CD and digital download.

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    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    SKYPE LESSON WITH SP: One 50 minute skype bass lesson with Sean – ask him anything you’d like to know about playing the bass! Includes Laura’s handwritten charts of the songs from the CD, in pdf format and the new Liaisons CD and digital download.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    THE THANK YOU SONG: Laura is going to write a thank you song that includes the names of everyone who donates $100 or more to the campaign. Yes, it could be a little goofy and it could get long, but here’s your chance to be immortalized in song! We’ll record it at the home studio and send you the mp3 when it’s finished as well as the typed up lyrics/music! Includes THE BASIC.

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    THE THANK YOU SONG DELUXE: Includes everything in THE THANK YOU SONG pack, plus a copy of Sean’s new jazz instrumental CD, “Let it Show” AND one of Laura’s songwriter CD’s, and a copy of Laura’s “quaint” charts!

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    TREATS: Okay, this one is a little off the subject of jazz, but we wanted to share some kitchen treats with you. Laura will make you 2 quarts of her infamous fresh organic nutmilk and a dozen chocolate nutmilk meal balls (vegan and organic); Sean will make a batch of his insanely delicious homemade cookies to go along with the nutmilk (for those who prefer a little more decadence). We’ll deliver the whole shebang to your home within a 30 mile radius of Eugene. Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    ADOPT A SONG: choose any song on the album (we’ll email you the list) and we’ll print your name in the CD liner notes as the song’s sponsor and/or dedicate it to someone you love! Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack plus an extra copy of the new Liaisons CD signed to whomever you’d like!

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    LOCAL HOUSE CONCERT/private party with the Liaisons Duo (Laura and Sean) – 2 hours of jazz at your home (within 30 miles from Eugene). Start planning your holiday, anniversary, birthday, retirement, you name it party and we’ll provide the music! Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack. Please allow up to 12 months for scheduling.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    SPECIAL REQUEST: You choose your favorite standard (or close to it – we’re flexible), and we’ll learn it and record it for you in the home studio (demo quality). We’ll send you the mp3 when it’s finished! Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack.

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    OUT OF TOWN HOUSE CONCERT/private party with the Liaisons Duo (Laura and Sean) – 2 hours of jazz at your home (within 300 miles from Eugene). Start planning your holiday, anniversary, birthday, retirement, you name it party and we’ll provide the music! Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack. Please allow up to 12 months for scheduling.

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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    WAY OUT OF TOWN HOUSE CONCERT /private party with the Liaisons Duo (Laura and Sean) – 2 hours of jazz at your home anywhere in the lower 48. Start planning your holiday, anniversary, birthday, retirement, you name it party and we’ll provide the music! Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack. Please allow up to 16 months for scheduling.

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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    YOU PICK A SONG FOR THE ALBUM: a standard, of course, but feel free to run anything by us. We’ll learn it and record it and put it on the album, with your name in the liner notes as the song’s sponsor, and dedicate it to someone you love! Think about a really sweet anniversary, Valentines, birthday or holiday gift :-) A few options are helpful ☺. Includes everything in the THANK YOU SONG DELUXE pack, plus an extra copy of the new Liaisons CD signed to whomever you’d like!

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Funding period

- (52 days)