Hey friends, welcome to Patreon.
What is Patreon? Well, it’s a very new and great experiment based on very ancient models of royal patronage. I’ll never forget listening with awe to my music guru, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan, relating his memories of being a court musician to one of the kings of Rajasthan. Without financial concerns, he was able to play and practice and compose music day in and day out. He recalled it as one of the best and most creative times in a life filled with amazing experiences.
Of course, those days are long gone, at least in the Western world. So many artists of all kinds struggle to provide for themselves and their families in even the most basic ways. And now, with the incredible success of streaming services like Spotify and Pandora, which pay almost nothing to the artists, recorded music has lost its economic value and musicians can only make a living on the road. (It seems kind of crazy, but, thanks to two wonderful patrons, I am finally able to make a new double CD of music that I’ve wanted and needed to record for ages!!) So Patreon is attempting to rebalance the equation by creating a wonderful and very new platform for fans to help the artists that they love.
About seven years ago, I did a Kickstarter campaign to help me make a music video for one of the songs from Thunder Love. I was so amazed and happy and thrilled to see how all my fans came together, and in a week and we had the funding to create a beautiful video. Since then, Kickstarter and other crowd-funding platforms have become very popular, which is awesome, but I find that I am a bit overwhelmed by all the campaigns, and I had the feeling that I wanted to do something different. With the Kickstarter campaign we created a video and then, suddenly, I had no money again and needed to be constantly on the road, away from my family, with my health suffering.
Enter Patreon!!! I am asking you to go back to the medieval times of India where kings were patrons to the artists that they loved. Please, be my kings and queens!!! I’ll share with you about eight ‘things’ a month — home movies of me singing new songs or old songs, unreleased rough mixes or demos, backstage video blogs from a gig, just me talking to you about my experiences, and many other fun possibilities. In return I’m asking for a little bit of support each month. With Patreon, it can be as little as $1 a month or up to a million, and there’ll be perks for each level of donation. This could very possibly be a whole new and wonderful approach to sharing art and to supporting the artists that we love. I’ve already pledged a monthly contribution to several musicians and groups that I thought were cool and needed help. Of course, it’s a work in progress and I invite you to write to me and ask me questions, and let’s just see what happens. The music industry is now completely outdated, so let’s bypass and go friend-to-friend, fan-to-artist, heart-to-heart. Let’s give it a try, ok?
Join me on Patreon here!
Love and peace,