Amanda Palmer On The Loss Of The Middleman (More Important Than The Asking For Money Thing)

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Everyone is buzzing about how Amanda Palmer has come to the defense of asking for money from fans and the lack of guilt she has for it. While she does make a great point about her street musician background giving her a lack of guilt for the request, I think she briefly touches upon a greater point.

With more and more artists going their own way and looking to connect “direct to fan” some of the more “entitled” fans seem appalled you are asking for money. With that said, from my experience when you have a middleman (label) asking for this money some people seem to no longer question the request for money. Once it is seen that you are a part of “the system” it is as if some of the more connection challenged fans understand why you are charging.

I have begun to wonder about the problems DIY/go-it-alone artists are going to face with this. As a producer I have found that having management deal with problems where I need to ask for more money keeps me as the good guy, and the management as the guy who has to deal with a bottom line. When the manager is a dick, I have been able to say, “I’m not good with money and I need this guy to do that side of things otherwise I’d be broke and homeless.” My questions is this an issue DIY artists with strong fan bonds are looking at dealing with? Amanda’s blog post adresses the issue that many of the professionals she is working with are feeling guilted for charging for content these days. So what I ask is whether we are about to see an era where the go-it-alone artists need to adopt a less personal connection with fans in order to keep the arms length from the guilt givers? Are DIY artists going to have their arms pinned back by those in the “music should be free” community, where as right now those on labels can stand behind their label bodygaurds and claim innocence?

Jesse Cannon is the editor of Musformation. He produces records at his studio Cannon Found Soundation. Follow him on Twitter at @JesseCannonMusF. For more info please visit his website.

  • Anonymous

    Amanda P. is ****ing spot on target here! It’s about time somebody stood up to all these lame bloggers saying musicians should give away their music and get into t-shirt sales!