If you follow a number of local musicians (or any musicians not established on the national level, for that matter), you've no doubt seen your share of Kickstarter campaigns. The website has become a major tool in helping musicians (among others) get funding for releasing records. I've decided that every Monday, I will spotlight deserving local artists in need of your financial assistance. So give these artists a listen, and if you like them and can afford to contribute, do so. Plus, if you'll notice on their Kickstarter pages, there can be sweet incentives for donating, ranging from copies of the yet to be released CD all the way to private house concerts. Check each artist's page for their rewards for donating. Also, if you are in a band that has a Kickstarter campaign, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know, and if I like your music, I'll be more than happy to spread the word.
Anna Thomas (Kickstarter page)
The young Ms. Thomas started recording her music at the mere age of twelve. What makes that so amazing, however, is the incredible level of maturity, both in terms of performance and lyrics, that she possessed as such a young age. Fast forward about five years later, and Anna is still writing beautiful and intelligent music that needs to be heard by all ages. Fans of female pianists a la Regina Spektor, Tori Amos, and Fiona Apple should especially take note of her music. She's already released an impressive EP entitled Break Apart, and is looking to record her first full length with producer Levi Bradford. Her campaign ends in less than a week, so the time to donate is now. And yes, there are rewards for donating. My personal favorite is that for a $500 donation, one gets to co-write a song with Ms. Thomas, and she'll record a video of that song and post it on YouTube. Pretty cool, huh? Below is "Hush", the first song of Anna's I ever heard. Listen and see if you love it as much as I did.
Caterpillars (Kickstarter page)
I first met Caterpillars' lead singer Christopher Robinson during his stint in Menkena. He had the unenviable job of taking over Nolan Thies' position in the band. And yet with his skills on the guitar, Mr. Robinson proved that he would not just merely "fill in" those shoes, but prove himself to be a musical equal to Mr. Thies. That's no easy task. Caterpillars may share some of the dreamy qualities of Menkena, but also manage to incorporate elements of electronica with slight hints of emo (and while I'm not generally a fan of that genre, Caterpillars make the sound work). And the time to donate for Caterpillars is urgent, with less than three days left. Below is my favorite track from their self titled debut EP, ":Lifetime in the Pretense".