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Sunday, March 20, 2011

It beats “The Twitter Band.”

Band self-promotion is a cold, desperate place. Without major label support, most acts are left to their own devices, and that usually means a shitty MySpace page. But what do you do when you don’t even have a name for the group yet? Fear not, because the innermets offer myriad possibilities. Ben Adley, Ryan Lewis and Kevin Russell from one new band in Seattle came up with a different approach with You Name Our Band. Actually it was the bass player Kevin who came up with. (It’s always the bass player that makes the most sense.)

Why not let a brand sponsor them for money, and in return, the band would be named after the brand?

To the cloud and eBay: AUCTION TIME! $251,000 later and they are now known as the band. (The bids were private so you can only imagine who bid for the rights.) Currently with one song out, the fellas will use the money to produce the rest of their album. After it’s done though, another twist: They plan on giving their music away and generating revenue off touring, merch sales and other some such stuff.

This last part is something all bands have to face, because if they go the route of self-producing, they’re doing it without that major label support behind them, which typically includes a budget for self-promotion. Interesting to try the approach when first starting out as it seems established acts can better afford to give their stuff away, especially if they already have an existing library that they’ve made money from (Prince, Radiohead, etc.), or in other cases create their own label but still charge (Ani DiFranco).

Good luck gang. First order of business with part of that $251K though: Hit for the domain. On second thought, the client will probably want to go with .net instead.

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