Over a year and a half ago the ccMixter community decided to stop having formal remix contests in part because in a CC context, the traditional format seemed outdated. In a typical remix contest an artist would post the stems to one song, retaining all the rights to the samples as well as the remixes produced by the entrants. After the contest deadline, the samples are typically taken off the web site in order to take them out of official circulation.
By contrast, on ccMixter, we’ve turned to a ‘call for remixes’ model where we get the artist to put the stems for an entire album into the Commons and keep it there. Therefore the concept of a ‘deadline’ seems mute. The best part is that the rights to the remixes are retained by the artist. This has proven to be much more amenable to the community and it has responded with 1,000s of remixes to calls by DJ Vadim, Bucky Jonson, Trifonic,Calendar Girl, Brad Sucks and Shannon Hurley.
Shannon exemplifies the new hybrid sharing+business model because when we she was ready to put together an album of remixes she licensed, for a fee, the remixes from the producers for the album “Second Light: The Ready to Wake Up Remixes” (AMIE Street, CD Baby and iTunes).
She will be performing the remixes with Ben Eisen on bass, Sam Cunningham on drums, and “my apple notebook” in Los Angeles on December 10th. This gig will be quite the party as ccMixter producer DJ Doughy will be flying from Kansas City, Mo. and I’ll be making a special trip to LA for this event as well. (There is a $12 charge at the door.)
Our latest call has special significance because we’ve been trying to get indie star State Shirt for a while and he’s come through in a big way. Not only did he put his entire “This is Old” album, stems, a cappellas and all, into the Commons but his plan is to use the remixes themselves as source material for a new album of original music. State is a master songwriter who writes and performs in an “energetic and ridiculously catchy” way according to DoKashiteru who should know: his DnB smasher remix was an Editor Pick minutes after upload.
The State Shirt call is: “Remix Me So I Can Remix You”
He says: “Creative Commons is the perfect antidote for a collapsing landscape still clinging to traditional copyright. I hope more artists discover that freedom, flexibility, collaboration and community are now an option. I also hope that my fellow ccMixters would want to get involved with me, in both the creation and re-creation of music.”No Comments »
Brad Sucks, a CC license using pop/rock musician, recently released his latest album Out Of It for free online and under a CC BY-SA license. Brad is one of the most remixed artists over at ccMixter, runs an active blog, interacts with fans directly, and was recently interview by the Featured Commoners behind The Indie Band Survival Guide. Needless to say we needed to catch up with Brad and ask some questions of our own – read on to learn about Brad’s influences, why he uses CC licenses, and how he feels about his work being remixed and reused.
Can you give our reader’s a bit of background on you and your music? How long have you been creating music? What are your influences?
I started taking classical guitar lessons when I was 10 years old. I hated practicing and was never very good and quit because it was boring. Then when I was 14 or so I got into MOD/S3M trackers (Scream Tracker and then later Impulse Tracker) and was really into industrial/electronic music. I got an electric guitar a few years later and started trying to fit it all together as digital recording matured.
My influences were mostly classic rock as a kid. Pink Floyd, Rolling Stones, etc, the stuff my dad listened to. As a teenager I was into more aggressive stuff: Ministry, Skinny Puppy, Nine Inch Nails, etc. Besides being a lot harder, it had a real DIY ethic to it. There usually wasn’t much of a “band”, just one or two guys working on recordings. That was a huge inspiration because it seemed normal to me to think of doing everything myself. After that I mellowed out and de-gothed a bit but I secretly wish I could take myself seriously enough to rock like Ministry.
A lot’s changed since I started putting music on the Internet way back in 2001. Artist-endorsed free downloads were shocking. Flexible pricing was still an untested novelty. It was rare to find source files from artists and sharing music wasn’t encouraged by new artists.
Recently I was asked if I’d do anything different this time around [...] and I honestly couldn’t imagine why I’d do things different. The only reason I, a dude who made an album by himself in a country basement, has had any sort of success is because people took it upon themselves to share my music with their friends. They remixed it, they used it in their videos, they played it on their podcasts, they included it in software and games and it took on a life of its own.
To coincide with the album release, ccMixter got Randy Chertkow and Jason Feehan, authors of the “Indie Band Survival Guide” to conduct an interview with Brad Sucks. Brad is one of the most sampled artists over at ccMixter and the interview sheds much more light on his music in particular and opinions on the music industry as a whole.No Comments »