Friday, February 28, 2014
When I was a little guy, I knew right off that I wanted to be in a rock and roll band one day. But more than that, I wanted to BE the band. I wanted to play all of the instruments, and when I came to understand how multitrack recording worked, I realized that I really could be a one man band. Once I started recording songs on my own, I started branching off into a plethora of styles, so I would give each group of songs in a similar style it's own band name. Before long, I was putting together compilation cd's featuring ten or twelve bands, that were all just me under different monikers. I decided to start a pretend music label to house my pretend bands. At first it was called Black Vibrations, as I was beginning to dabble in psychedelics and was fascinated with the idea of bad trips and bad vibes. This later morphed to "Bad Mantra". I carried this fake label with me into my thirties, when I began to wonder, what is the difference between a "real" label and my "pretend" label? Do I need some kind of business license? Bands don't need to do anything "official" to become a real band, why should my music label? I decided in the end, that if I put together a compilation cd featuring Wisconsin bands that didn't quite fit into any obvious genre, made up a nice, professional package for it, and had it professionally duped, with a real bar code on the back of the case, my music label would indeed become a real thing. So, in April of this year, I began putting together Bad Mantra's Strange Communication Compilation Vol. 1. It took about two months and two hundred dollars to put together a comp cd and have 100 copies made. In the world that we live in, anyone with a laptop, a printer and a little ingenuity can become their own business. I've since put out a cd for a local black metal band, a four cassette collection for my one-man noise outfit, made my own stickers and t-shirts, and recently put out a cassette EP for a rock band that I play in with a couple of my buddies. "Do it yourself" has taken on a new meaning, in that you can do it yourself and make it look like it was professionally done. If you're still putting off doing that thing that you've been meaning to get around to, do it now! At least start it now. Nothing is more satisfying than coming up with a good idea, and executing it.