Hi, my name is Matt, and I used to be an electrician.
For the last several decades, I’ve also been an independent, DIY, internationally-touring, singer-songwriter and recording artist based in Austin, TX.
Now when I say that I’m DIY (done it yo-slash-myself), what I mean to say is that I could not have done any of this without the love and support of so many for so many years.
I am so lucky to get to live this dream of a “job”, so to my family, friends and all of the fans that have continually supported my endeavors for decades, a heartfelt THANK YOU! I am truly eternally grateful.
This song, "Thank You," is for YOU. You can have it. For free. It is available in all the places online, for download and streaming. Thank you.
Now, when it comes to the recording process, I have also had help over the years (Dave Sanger, Bruce Hughes, Mark Addison, Scrappy Jud Newcomb) in the form of co-producers, and I am so very grateful for that as well.
But, after years of doing things a certain way, I realized recently- for reasons both creative and business related- that it was time to try something new.
New, to be honest, is somewhat terrifying.
But, I am also feeling exhileration at the prospect of trying something new- something risky, creatively (and financially!!).
I decided to try and make my next record with a (capital P) Producer.
Who you might ask? I asked myself this as well. So... I made lists. Talked to friends in the music biz. Made more lists. Listened to many many records. Edited my lists, and then, fortuitiously and organically, I found someone…
Last Summer I got to play at the Newport Folk Festival for the second year in a row.
I swapped songs with the great Chris Smither on festival's intimate Museum Stage.
It was surreal, and a wonderful experience.
I was also very excited to see that one of my recent faves, Laura Veirs, was playing the same stage earlier the same day.
When thinking about producers, I had listened to Laura’s most recent release, The Lookout, and made a mental note to check out who the producer was.
While backstage before the show, I met Laura and her husband, Tucker Martine, who it turns out, had produced her most recent record. But I didn’t know that yet. I also didn’t know yet that Tucker had produced many records that I already knew and loved. What I did know, was that Tucker Martine was, in real life, A Kind Person.
Now Newport Folk is a great place- and most everyone is friendly- but in the business of musicing, that is not always (or often) the case.
There exists an unspoken, high school-esque hierarchy, and I have often felt at the bottom of that existential ladder. #hashtagcharliebrown
Not everyone takes the little extra steps to be kind. It may be hyperbole, but when I met Tucker Martine, there was an aura of kindness that emanated off of him, and I think I decided right there and then, that I wanted to make a record with him.
Being comfortable in a studio with someone is a huge part of the recording process, although it’s not often stated. Setting the tone of creative collaboration, as opposed to authority-weilding, is a subtle but powerful skillset for a Producer. Now, to be clear, I went home after Newport, and did my homework. I dug into the entirety of the albums that Tucker had produced, and only became more and more impressed the further I researched. I knew about The Decemberists, Laura Veirs, Sufjan Stevens and so many more, but I had no idea about all the Bill Frisell, Wayne Horvitz and Jenny Scheinman!!
So now, months later (that have been full of dreaming and planning, composing and coordinating), I will go into Tucker Martine’s studio, Flora Recording, in Portland, OR, in early October to record a full length album!
I humbly ask for your help and support to realize this thrilling project!
The Kickstarter goal is $30,000. That is indeed a lot of money, and it covers the studio, engineering and producer fees. This record will cost more than that, but this is the bare minimum to get moving on this project. There are travel costs, lodging, musicians, and then manufacturing, promotional and distribution. So, in the parlance of the kids, we will have STRETCH GOALS! #stretchgoals
1st STRETCH GOAL-$40,000
This will ensure that i can pay for all of the musicians that will play on this record, and feed them. We will eat mostly power bars. And i believe most of us will be intermittent fasting. This will cover the travel as well, getting people to and from Portland, OR.
2nd STRETCH GOAL-$50,000
This will help to cover the manufacturing costs of the record, and the artwork, and all the million things that go into the design and packaging of a finished record.
3rd STRETCH GOAL-$60,000
Once the record is finished, the promotion and radio promotion will help to ensure that all sorts of people will hear it, which is something i definitely hope will happen.
This sometimes feels crazy, asking you all to help me when you've done so much already. This shifting and challenging new paradigm of digital media ingesting, and it's lack of financial compensation for media creators, has left many of us both curious about and skeptical of the unconventional ways we must now pursue the funding of our work. But in the end I'm grateful, too, for this Kickstarter platform, and it's ability to connect me to you, and to be given the opportunity to ask for your help. I very much appreciate that you're willing to listen to my story and my songs. I thank you all again for being willing to support me, I don’t take it lightly, and I hope I can create something that we will both be proud of, and you can enjoy and take with you, wherever you go!
Risks and challenges
This is a steep ask. I get that. But I also want to be upfront about the costs about making a record in a bigger, different way than I have in the past.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)