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File Transfer Protocol - Q&A (2012)
2012-01-07 | Katarzyna NINa Górnisiewicz | via Formspring | RSS | "Regime" - free song download

Go to: 2012-01: 05 | 06 | 07 | 08 | 09 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 2011 Interview

Q: [NINa] You're a purely DIY artist. A lot of blogs give advices as to how a DIY band should be run successfully. In my opinion, if one wanted to follow those tips, there would be no time for making music. How do you manage your solo project? Any special regime?

A: [Sean Rieger] That's a good question. I think there are a million people offering musicians advice on how to be successful. Frankly, I haven't seen too many of the people offering the advice, who have been successful or even musicians, for that matter. I mean, that's fine and all, but I tend to follow my own path. It's what works for me.

So far, the secret to keeping up with everything, for me, has been balance. I think some people get so wrapped up in chattering on social media, that they stop releasing new music. I try to remind myself that for the most part, my fans know me, and are interested in me, because of my music. Music is my "product" & if I spend all my time promoting a product that doesn't exist, well... Then I've become a "personality" more than a musician. I'm not interested in that. My music is far bigger than I am. It's far more important than what I had for breakfast.

Now, all that being said, it IS very important to stay in touch with my fans. The days of releasing one album and then disappearing for a few years are gone. So, I need to stay in touch. I don't like the idea of having a PR firm manage my social media, but I have to balance my time... So, my iPhone never leaves my side. I have a few tools that allow me to watch all of my social media sites, and I am constantly checking for people who have asked me a question, or commented.(Don't believe me? See how many times I respond at 5:00 AM... Yeah, the first thing I do everyday is grab my coffee and my phone & and see who said "hello" from a different time zone, while I was sleeping. Having a global fanbase is awesome, but many folks in New Zealand and Poland for example, are up while I am asleep in the US. ) I think it's incredibly important to answer people. They took the time to ask me something, I should take the time to answer back.

Also, I'm honest with my fans. I give them a heads-up when I am trying to finish up a release. I try to give them something to look forward to, by filming a song in progress, or taking pictures in the studio and posting them. It let's them know that if I am not responding to everything, it's for a reason... I'm actually making music to give to them. I find that they honestly understand that, and give me some time to finish things up. In short, it's funny what happens when you just start talking to your fans like the rational human beings that they are... You actually start to understand each other.

The really cool part is that because we understand each other, we begin to help each other out. Example... I listen when a fan asks me if I've seen a new piece of audio software. Why? Because they are offering me information that otherwise, I would have to spend time looking for on my own. They just opened up some time for me. So I respond to them and offer suggestions on other software or things that I have seen. We help each other out, and that takes a little but of my time, but in the long run, it saves me a bunch. Here's how:

My fanbase is so loaded with smart, creative people... From designers, to writers, to musicians and computer tech people. Why would I not rely on them? They are like family to me. So, they help with creative inspiration, gear suggestions and even promoting my music, which buys me time to keep pushing new material out. It's pretty much like they are shareholders more than they are customers. So yes, I am DIY to an extent, but I have this huge team of people that help me, called fans. It just seems to work for me, and instead of looking out over a bunch of nameless faces at a show, I get to know people I may have never met. It makes the whole process of music, much more intimate for all of us, and in my opinion, it just doesn't get any better than that.

What do you think? | Send your question to Sean

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