Earlier this spring, hip hop group De La Soul took to crowdfunding giant Kickstarter with a mission to raise only $110,000 for their new album. Within only hours of its launch, the initiative successfully secured its initial goal and by the end of its round raised over $600,000. Now, the band is ready to share details about the project, including why they decided to give the funding method a chance.
The group (Posdnous, Dave, and Maseo), took to Medium.com and wrote:
“First of all, as a group, we have been very blessed to be able to maneuver throughout the ups and downs of the music industry. One of our strong points has always been our live show, which allows us to be a part of many of the annual festivals across the world, as well as shows held in performance theatres. We have been able to do this for more than 20 years, with or without an album to promote.
“Now that album sales have decreased considerably, touring along with other options like merchandise and brand pairing has become the norm for artists. Traditionally labels would not be cut into the pieces of the financial pie, but with today’s 360 deals, the label no might be entitled to that money to make up for the dwindling amounts made from decreased record sales.
“We definitely could not foresee ourselves pairing up with a label and allowing them to take a cut of our bread and butter on the road. Even if we could get a label behind the project that would exclude touring from the deal, there was still a growing concern for how the creative aspect of this project would be nurtured and allowed to grow within the test tube of a label. Let us also not forget the amount of an advance that a label gives to you speaks volumes of their financial belief in your project.
“We honestly weren’t sure what a label would be willing to give us. Eventually crowdfunding was brought to the table. We had heard of Kickstarter before that point, but never really looked into it. Maseo (Plug 3) had actually brought it up in conversation a while before that and that was my first time hearing of it.”
While discussing the new album and what fans should expect, the group explained:
“The new record is turning out to be an album of great spirit. An album o not just beats and rhymes, but songs with well crafted stories and thought. Unconventional arrangements with mismatched features that fit perfectly within our world or ‘no rules allow.’ There’s a rock song, a country western song, a garage band melodic adventure, a drum machine masterpiece, a sad song, a serious song, a funny song. In other words, there is everything on this album. It’s going to be an adventure. We’re looking to release it in September.”
In regards to the support their received during the crowdfunding campaign, the band added:
“We had humbly asked for $110,000, hoping we would not only reach that goal, but also exceed it by the end of the campaign. So to reach the financial goal within the first nine hours of launch was absolutely astonishing. By the time we reached half-a-million dollars, it left us feeling joyous about the possibilities for this project.”
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