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View Full Version : Amanda Palmer and the GTO



Sigur Ros Stache
09-16-2012, 12:02 AM
according to a conversation I had with her tonight after her show in Atlanta they are playing coachella next year. The show was amazingly great btw!

BobCaygeon
09-16-2012, 09:37 AM
Good news. I missed her on account of a conflict last time.

IceyHotshot
09-16-2012, 10:07 AM
Will she pay her musicians in more than hugs?

sonofhal
09-16-2012, 10:11 AM
Will she stand there just repeating praise she's got off people like she does every few minutes on twitter?

Kyliediscope
09-16-2012, 12:51 PM
Will she pay her musicians in more than hugs?

I honestly am rolling my eyes at everyone's reaction to this. She has a group of musicians she is traveling with that are paid. They play with her at every show. She is asking for volunteers for a few songs for a string section. Traveling with all those band members she needs for some of the songs would mean she'd have to charge probably double for tickets because currently they are only 25 a pop. I don't think it is unreasonable to ask if fans would like to come up and play a few songs with the band. How excited would everyone be if Radiohead said "we are adding a string section for a few songs and would like to ask volunteers to come practice the day of and perform on stage."

amyzzz
09-16-2012, 01:16 PM
I have a friend who is auditioning to play violin for the Phoenix show.

Trick Loves The Kids
09-16-2012, 01:32 PM
She raised more than a million bucks and still wants strangers to perform an integral part of her set for beer and hugs? that's insane.

I don't begrudge anyone who would volunteer but the same reason people volunteer is why this is a bad thing on her part. She's basically exploiting her fans because they're her fans and pocketing the money anyway.

Plus, fuck, I saw P-Funk and the Polyphonic Spree for ~$25 a ticket. They each had like 20 band members and managed to do it without raising a literal million dollars beforehand

getbetter
09-16-2012, 01:50 PM
I read she raised 1.2 million to make that album and string section would of costed 35 thousand dollars to go on tour with her.I personally don't care too much because all of this could of been stop by her fans.Yet they support it seems .

shakermaker113
09-16-2012, 01:53 PM
to say that she raised a million dollars is a little short sighted. much of that money immediately went back to fans as kickstarter prizes, she only took away some percentage of that to spend on her album & tour.

I do think it is a bit cheeky to be asking for more having so recently asked for so much. I think the dialogue that followed is healthy.

I like the idea of community contributing to shows, but I think that her choice of timing is poor. she could have done stripped down versions this tour (like every other band who can't afford a string section) and tried this experiment another time.

and I'm pretty sure p-funk has a bit more money behind him. venues probably go out seeking him and offering him larger paychecks up front knowing he will attract a decent crowd. it's not quite fair to compare a musical legend with decades of career behind him vs an artist with a few albums.

Kyliediscope
09-16-2012, 01:56 PM
Tricks,

Read her breakdown of what she had to spend money on. Some of the prizes for the kickstarted included custom painted turntables! I also attended one of the AFP house parties because a friend of mine donated 5K to her album. She paid to fly out and had to put herself up in a hotel and rented a car.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/amandapalmer/amanda-palmer-the-new-record-art-book-and-tour/posts/232020

Trick Loves The Kids
09-16-2012, 02:40 PM
That breakdown is really questionable. $15 to make and ship a CD? Her CD's on Amazon for $10, I assume that's not the deluxe version or whatever but CDs are cheap as fuck to manufacture if you're ordering 7,000 of them, $15 seems like an incredibly high estimate. All of the figures are fairly arbitrary, I mean she cuts off $250k to begin with just because which really begs the question of what she was going to do has she only raised her goal of $100k. I don't even really take issue with the Kickstarter though, let people give her money... my problem is with her asking musicians to pay for free when she's making money.

I don't like that people bring up community music and just playing for fun, I don't think it's applicable here. If she said "hey, I'm gonna be at this venue, bring your instruments and we'll jam" or "I'm playing a charity show and need backing musicians" this wouldn't be an issue whatsoever, it's that she's charging $25 bucks for a ticket and only paying some of the musicians she deems necessary to fulfill her artistic vision. And really, P-Funk might be an extreme example, but seriously... she wanted 100k, got almost 12 times that figure, and still can't work up a budget where she can pay all the musicians she requires for this show?

This is like the unpaid internship of the music world, which is to say that it's bad. By this logic Metallica can pay their roadies in autographs and David Guetta can pay his limo drivers in sweat-soaked towels, 'cause they're fans and they're just thrilled to be a part of it at all, right? And yeah, I can't blame the fans whatsoever, I blame her for thinking this was acceptable in the first place.

IceyHotshot
09-16-2012, 02:50 PM
I think crowdsourcing is a pretty questionable practice (e.g. musician has fans compete to create a tour poster, gives the winner $200, makes 10x that on sales) and it's even worse when you pay them nothing. Add to that the fact that the kickstarter should have paid for this (what's more important? a ridiculous prize package or paying the people who make your shows possible) and it's garbage. I have never listened to Amanda Palmer and I will boycott.

My comment was meant to point out that she surely will get paid some nice sum to play two weekends of Coachella, and if she still doesn't pay her string sections, it doesn't say much about her integrity.

I like musicians who appreciate fans, not ones who feel entitled to them. The level of arrogance in suggesting working for hugs is also off the charts.

sonofhal
09-16-2012, 02:59 PM
Amanda Palmer and the GTFO.

IceyHotshot
09-16-2012, 03:01 PM
I hope Paul Tollett is paying her in hugs and cookies.

RotationSlimWang
09-16-2012, 03:17 PM
... yeah, I would be so fucking angry if one of my favorite musicians let me get on stage and perform with them and didn't pay me for it.

Holy shit you people are assholes.

Trick Loves The Kids
09-16-2012, 06:58 PM
Inviting fans on stage and asking musicians to show up, rehearse, and perform with you for free are intensely different things.

Also beyond the money issue, the idea that her artistic vision involves musicians who learned the songs earlier that day seems kind of questionable.

RotationSlimWang
09-16-2012, 07:06 PM
Most orchestras will practice entire symphonies for all of a few hours as rehearsal. She isn't holding a gun to their head. Most of these people would pay money to get to rehearse with her. I really don't see what the problem is.

Kyliediscope
09-16-2012, 08:03 PM
That 15 dollar cd book is a 25 page art book, cd, and thank you card. I'd bet that does actually cost about 15 dollars to manufacture and ship.

shakermaker113
09-16-2012, 08:03 PM
Also beyond the money issue, the idea that her artistic vision involves musicians who learned the songs earlier that day seems kind of questionable.

questionable why? pop/rock music is never that complex.

bmack86
09-17-2012, 12:37 PM
Ok, does no one else think it's ridiculous that her "Prior-to-beginning" debt is $250,000? What the hell is she doing in 8 months time to accrue that level of debt. My problem is that she just seems to think that it's okay to use fan money and fan time if they're willing to give it, rather than trying to be more self-sufficient and work within her means. She really annoys me.

And basically that has to do with all the extravagance of the show. Maybe people who are really into that are willing to pay the extra money up front to have the experience later, but it all seems kind of bombastic, pompous and extravagant to me.

amyzzz
09-17-2012, 12:39 PM
If the show is really that extravagant, I'm looking more forward to seeing her Saturday. (My brother bought me the ticket as a birthday present, I'm not really a fan, and I have not decided how I feel either way on this issue)

bmack86
09-17-2012, 12:47 PM
Oh, I also thought it was ridiculous that she said she'd pay for strings in certain larger markets, because obviously those shows matter more.

Kyliediscope
09-17-2012, 12:50 PM
Or maybe because larger markets sell more tickets and therefore have the revenue to allow her to pay those artists.

amyzzz
09-17-2012, 12:50 PM
Ok, THAT is shitty because I know I am in a smaller market.

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 02:00 PM
I'm sure there are musicians who can nail the sections with 20 minutes of rehearsals but I think if you want a consistent level of quality you'd probably pay people and take them on tour with you instead of relying on strangers who learned the songs that afternoon. It's not even "hey, let's try something cool with this tour, strangers will be my backing band!" it's literally and explicitly "I need these musicians but according to my own math I can't afford to pay them so I'm going to ask them to work for free."

This isn't Ghostface bringing up a fan to do ODB's verse, this is Ghostface having one of his fans act as his DJ for no pay because he doesn't want to pay for one.

IceyHotshot
09-17-2012, 02:06 PM
Ok, does no one else think it's ridiculous that her "Prior-to-beginning" debt is $250,000? What the hell is she doing in 8 months time to accrue that level of debt. My problem is that she just seems to think that it's okay to use fan money and fan time if they're willing to give it, rather than trying to be more self-sufficient and work within her means. She really annoys me.

And basically that has to do with all the extravagance of the show. Maybe people who are really into that are willing to pay the extra money up front to have the experience later, but it all seems kind of bombastic, pompous and extravagant to me.

I agree with all of this.

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 03:01 PM
I'm sure there are musicians who can nail the sections with 20 minutes of rehearsals but I think if you want a consistent level of quality you'd probably pay people and take them on tour with you instead of relying on strangers who learned the songs that afternoon. It's not even "hey, let's try something cool with this tour, strangers will be my backing band!" it's literally and explicitly "I need these musicians but according to my own math I can't afford to pay them so I'm going to ask them to work for free."

This isn't Ghostface bringing up a fan to do ODB's verse, this is Ghostface having one of his fans act as his DJ for no pay because he doesn't want to pay for one.

Every charity in the world should just go fuck themselves. How dare they ask people to work for free who want to do it. Cocksucking fucks, giving people the freedom to participate in a show if they want to.

It costs money to tour across the country. When you're already bringing a bunch of paid musicians with you and you had to record your album yourself and are doing all your own promotions, there are a lot of people to pay I imagine. If her math says that she won't be making as much as she feels she needs to off the smaller market shows (because they pay her less money) and her answer is to ask her fans to come up and play and they're not only willing but EAGER to do so, I don't see how any of you dumb cunts can possibly object to it.

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 03:03 PM
I'm glad that you all have such firmly held opinions on exactly how much it costs to record, promote, and tour throughout a country that you can have incredibly definite opinions about what is and what is not financially plausible. Please, enlighten me with your ridiculous speculations and the fiscal realities of other subject matters you know fucking nothing about.

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 03:23 PM
You sound mad.

I think Ms. Palmer should get in touch with Of Montreal, they are independent as fuck, do huge tours all over the country with crazy production and manage to do it without asking anyone to play for free or raising $1,000,000 beforehand.

Kyliediscope
09-17-2012, 03:44 PM
I....
agree with Randy.

yeahfontaine
09-17-2012, 04:31 PM
I....
agree with Randy.

Me...

too. And I'm really excited to see her at Coachella! Thanks for the info, Stache!

Bumblebee
09-17-2012, 05:52 PM
I'm glad that you all have such firmly held opinions on exactly how much it costs to record, promote, and tour throughout a country that you can have incredibly definite opinions about what is and what is not financially plausible. Please, enlighten me with your ridiculous speculations and the fiscal realities of other subject matters you know fucking nothing about.

Polyphonic Spree have toured with Brass and Strings. Plus they've toured smaller venues than AFP.

shakermaker113
09-17-2012, 05:55 PM
Polyphonic Spree have toured with Brass and Strings. Plus they've toured smaller venues than AFP.

they save costs by exploiting child labor.

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 05:57 PM
And I sincerely doubt that any of them were actually making a living off of that band except maybe the lead whatever the fuck based on that. They probably all had some day jobs they had to do since the limited amount of money you make off a show doesn't split too well 26 ways. Amanda is trying to live off of her art and probably live comfortably, and goddammit as long as she's cheating her audience I really don't see how that's a problem. I guess you could condemn every musician who wants to make more off a show than the absolute bare minimum they need to live, but you'd be a fucking idiot for doing so.

She's helping save some money on her tour and giving her fans a chance to be a part of something that they'd all kill to do. How you assholes are turning this into her abusing her fans is fucking ridiculous. You should all be ashamed. I would love it if Arcade Fire came through town and asked for fans willing to come up on stage and play some percussion. I'd show up for free and be fucking thrilled to bang the shit out of their drums. Would that somehow be different?

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 05:59 PM
You sound mad.

I think Ms. Palmer should get in touch with Of Montreal, they are independent as fuck, do huge tours all over the country with crazy production and manage to do it without asking anyone to play for free or raising $1,000,000 beforehand.

They also sold their song to Outback steakhouse and probably made about a million off of that. Just stop trying to draw comparisons, it's fucking retarded.

Bumblebee
09-17-2012, 06:04 PM
And I sincerely doubt that any of them were actually making a living off of that band except maybe the lead whatever the fuck based on that. They probably all had some day jobs they had to do since the limited amount of money you make off a show doesn't split too well 26 ways. Amanda is trying to live off of her art and probably live comfortably, and goddammit as long as she's cheating her audience I really don't see how that's a problem. I guess you could condemn every musician who wants to make more off a show than the absolute bare minimum they need to live, but you'd be a fucking idiot for doing so.

You are assuming Poly Spree was a break even propostion, but it has been going on for over a decade. I know of profitable rock bands that also work day jobs between tours. Hell, even a member of Arcade Fire has a day job.

You also assume that even paying a local horn/string player would have her go broke. Her tour is playing venues that can gorss upwards of $30,000 per night on ticket sales alone.

Are you saying that it's OK for AFP to pocket kickstarter money for unrelated lifestyle choices?

Kyliediscope
09-17-2012, 06:09 PM
I think that using the money to pay rent/bills/flights incurred while focusing on creating a record while having no other source of income is fine because it is part of making the record. Paying the people that were working for her for those few months is acceptable as well.

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 06:10 PM
I'm saying you have absolutely no authority on touring costs. You are speculating based on comparisons to other bands. The Kickstarter fund was not just for her tour--it was to produce the album, it was to manufacture all the special items she sent to her donors, it was for a lot of things. You're making a lot of character assassinations about a case that you know practically none of the financial details of and you're doing it for a fucking stupid reason to boot. The musicians she's having volunteer for these shows aren't totally ESSENTIAL. She could perform without them. But if she wants to ask volunteers to add to the value of her show in a way that the budget for her tour just doesn't allow, what the fuck is the problem?

WHAT ARE YOU DICKHEADS ANGRY ABOUT?

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 06:58 PM
Would you say that Steve Albini knows a thing or two about recording, and/or touring? About the mysterious and unknowable costs of recording and touring?


Given that the typical budget for albums I work on is less than $10,000, you can take your pick of line-items in her budget, divide by ten and still have an order of magnitude worth of waste from my perspective. I haven't looked at the breakdown since I first saw it so don't quote me on it (haha, "don't quote me," I just said something funny), but I recall that she skimmed a couple hundred grand off the top for her pleasure prior to beginning to make the record. That alone is enough to make the record of your dreams a couple times over and seems like a straight-up "fuck you" to everybody who pledged money to the project.

It's crazy that I have to explain to you how ridiculous it is to blow a million dollars. More than a million dollars. Just say it out loud and think about how much fucking money a million dollars is. That's several really nice houses with a Jaguar in each garage. A lifetime's wages. It's just an incredible sum, enough to make a hundred records. Palmer had more than that at her disposal and now claims not to have enough left to pay musicians. To pay them for gigs she is also being paid to play. This coming from someone who already had a successful career before she had her audience begin paying all her expenses in advance. A millionaire pleading poverty and asking for additional charity. It's fucking ridiculous and it mocks all the bands who genuinely need their audience to help them conduct their business.

I don't have authority, no, but like.... Palmer's playing the Fillmore when she comes to SF. There are ~50 shows scheduled at the Fillmore (it's a fairly big, really nice, historic theater here) and as far as I know Amanda Palmer is the sole artist out of those 50 who needs people to play for free in order to put on the show. Is it possible that she has these mysterious costs and really just can't possibly find a way to pay every member of the band, despite that the other 49 scheduled acts have somehow managed to make the funds work? Yes, but more likely she's either terrible with money or wants to get out of paying people when she can get them to work for free.

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 07:11 PM
I'm saying that if she's willing to let amateur non-professional musicians who want to perform with her do so in exchange for beer and hugs and getting to hang out with a person they idolize so that she can make a little more money, she should be allowed to fucking go for it. 1.2 million from Kickstarter isn't exactly enough money to retire on. 10 percent gets taken right off the top, then half to taxes, then paying for all the recording and actual production of the merchandise that gets sent out to the people who donated to her campaign. The bitch has invested hours and hours of her life fostering a fiercely loyal group of devoted followers by constantly interacting with them and making herself personally accessible. It's finally actually paying off, and you're gonna begrudge her the right to make a couple hundred grand off an album release? Jesus Christ, fuck yourselves.

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 07:15 PM
Hmm. You seem a bit heated.

Perhaps it's time for me to cool this conversation off.

http://i.imgur.com/JqZXI.jpg

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 07:40 PM
I just don't get it. Filesharing has made it impossible to make money off record sales and rendered record labels that used to fund shit like tours obsolete. This chick found a way through delivering a personal relationship with her fanbase to actually make some money off a completely independently produced album and tour. She's trying to prove that if you take the time to actually establish a connection to your fans you can still be compensated well for being an artist. Rather than spend a bunch of money on putting up another three or four musicians in hotel rooms and paying for their travel and everything else, she decided instead to try and save some money by giving her fans--most of whom will not be professional musicians probably--to get up and play with her. She's not offering them any money 'cause, well, she doesn't have to and what if they're not really any good. The fans are happy to do it. She's proven you CAN be a profitable musician without any industry help. Why the fuck do you feel like you should begrudge her those profits if her fans feel lucky to get to play with her for beer and high-fives and the experience? What the fuck is it to you?

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 07:43 PM
How much money SHOULD she be allowed to make? Where's the line where it's unfair to try to keep up a profit margin, exactly?

Kyliediscope
09-17-2012, 07:52 PM
I got to attend one of her AFP house parties and it was great to see an artist so humble and connected with her fans. She is constantly video chatting with her fans, interacting with them. I feel like she worked really hard to develop a relationship with her fan base.

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 08:03 PM
How much money SHOULD she be allowed to make? Where's the line where it's unfair to try to keep up a profit margin, exactly?

Divorced from her personality, from the Kickstarter, from basically anything else I think it's bullshit to charge $35 for a show while asking musicians to pay for free, regardless of the circumstances. That's all.

Kyliediscope
09-17-2012, 08:07 PM
25 dollars.

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 08:08 PM
Because she'd be doing better by her fans to pay for four touring musicians to come along with her and be paid for those gigs rather than give four fans in each town a once-in-a-lifetime experience?

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 08:08 PM
My bad, $35 is with fees. The tickets are indeed $25. Still, my point stands.

Kyliediscope
09-17-2012, 08:11 PM
I don't see how it would be better to play with just the members she is currently touring with and exclude the fans that would love to come up and play strings and brass on a few songs (which aren't necessary for the show, but an addition that will enhance the audiences and the fans experience).

Trick Loves The Kids
09-17-2012, 08:27 PM
I think it would just be better if an act made sure to pay all of the people responsible for performing on a night when said act will be taking home a fair amount of money?

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 08:40 PM
Think of it this way: she's not charging them to come perform with her, so in a way she's paying them.

Boourns
09-17-2012, 09:03 PM
Fans getting an unprecedented chance to play with someone they idolize is a lot more interesting than a few traditional musicians getting a payday, ones that may not know or care about the artist in question. I think that artists in need of a more just compensation ought to be taking notes on this level of openness and fan inclusion.

And you all know this controversy is just going to inflame that us vs them mentality and make the fans latch onto her even harder. Imagine what she will be able to dump an obscene amount of money into after the next kickstarter.

shakermaker113
09-17-2012, 09:35 PM
you guys are funny. there's nothing wrong with having fans play. the only thing she did wrong was the way she presented it. after you've had an extremely successful fan-fuelled fundraiser you probably shouldn't talk about not being able to afford things. it may be true the kickstarter funds weren't enough to go far enough to afford all those extra touring musicians, but that still was not a tactful thing to say. "ugh! all your generosity only afforded me THREE diamond rings..."

RotationSlimWang
09-17-2012, 09:49 PM
Except that you assholes have no idea how much it cost her to make any of this shit that had to go out to the people who donated, or how much it cost to hire the touring musicians she did hire, or how much it costs to tour the fucking country period.

Boourns
09-17-2012, 09:51 PM
It's a tactless thing to say, definitely. But how much of the uproar has been over the lack of grace versus the act of having fans play for free?

Sigur Ros Stache
09-18-2012, 02:50 AM
In Atlanta she had two additional fans that volunteered one of which was considering driving to New Orleans on the 17th cuz he had such a great time. Interesting view points on both sides but in 2009 i allowed myself to be AFP's bitch and got painted with latex paint and was part of her "Amanda Fucking Palmer" people at the beginning of her show. It cost me a good 3 hours of my Coachella and you know what, was worth every minute of it and I would do it again in a heart beat. It was damn nice that after the show she hung out and talked with us after doing a meet and greet for 1k plus people, was about 145 am at this point and she was pretty fucking awesome for doing so.

Whether you like her or not or her business practices the show was stellar and had a great mix of DD as well as AFP songs....the change up in "Miss me" is AWESOME. If she was playing closer by id definitely go again.

amyzzz
09-18-2012, 08:05 AM
All this AFP talk has got me wondering what Thom Yorke has to do with this. (I get it, but it took me a minute to get it).

shakermaker113
09-18-2012, 08:18 AM
It's a tactless thing to say, definitely. But how much of the uproar has been over the lack of grace versus the act of having fans play for free?

if she hadn't just had a kickstarter nobody would be talking about this.

bmack86
09-19-2012, 03:35 PM
Well, she's paying them now (http://www.amandapalmer.net/blog/20120919/).

xanman86
09-19-2012, 03:44 PM
Anyone else there for this?


http://youtu.be/6KEOsV-Fa0I

TickleMeElmo
09-19-2012, 11:35 PM
Gawker had a nice write up on this whole thing...

http://gawker.com/5944050/amanda-palmers-million+dollar-music-project-and-kickstarters-accountability-problem

stinkbutt
09-20-2012, 10:13 AM
Amanda Palmer is married to Neil Gaiman, they have money

Kyliediscope
09-27-2012, 10:27 AM
BitCLF7hgcQ
This was my favorite song they did last night. All of the best songs live were her own that she adapted to the full band (well some have four parts on record, but this is the first time I saw her perform with them all), but I think the new songs sounded great live well. Killing type was a lot of fun. Berlin sounded pretty great. I really like her as the front woman. She has so much energy and her fans respond so well. Very energy filled room. I do think she shines the brightest when it's just her and a keyboard or a uke. It feels more inspirational.

Cheddar's Cousin
10-13-2012, 04:46 PM
I'll let her and the whole band stay at my house again...and I still won't charge her millionaire ass.

tral!
11-02-2012, 04:52 PM
I'm reading this thread and just sitting here wondering why the hell so many people have a problem with her having fans play in her band for free. If I could play an instrument well, I would jump at the chance to play with Amanda Palmer and I'm not even that big of a fan. She isn't exploiting anybody. There are no tricks or broken promises. People know exactly what they are getting into.

shakermaker113
11-03-2012, 09:26 AM
you obviously didn't read it very well.

shakermaker113
01-25-2013, 08:53 PM
according to a conversation I had with her tonight after her show in Atlanta they are playing coachella next year.

so much for that...

Grant
01-25-2013, 08:54 PM
so much for that...

apparently her friend has cancer and she cancelled her tour dates to take care of her friend.

shakermaker113
01-25-2013, 09:23 PM
oof. good reason.

goes to show how good our so called "confirmations" are.