It used to be that bands would go about their business playing shows and building a following to try and attract the attention of record companies. The upward path ran through the labels, and even though it didn't work out for most bands they still tried to follow it. That was a different world, however, and nowadays most bands are financing themselves -- and growing numbers of them are turning directly to their fans to underwrite recording projects and tours, often via online pledge systems like Kickstarter or Pledge Music.
"I like the micro-funding approach, crowd-funding projects like this," says Craig Kinley, a South Carolina man who recently contributed $600 to a Jennyanykind/Moaners recording project (and will have both bands play a house concert this summer as his reward). "I've got a couple of friends doing some Kickstarter deals for things like sending people to Africa for relief work. It seems like it's really gotten to be a big thing over the last year."
For more, see the story in Sunday's paper.