Happy Birthday To Me – Help Yourself To Some Music

2010 has been a bumper year for me, musically. Not only have I – as my top 20 shows – found more brand new music that I love than I know what to do with, it’s been an unexpectedly busy and productive year of music-making.

The ‘unexpected’ part is because it was also my first full year as a dad – 2010 is definitely the year of the Flapjack. At the start of the year, he was barely a month old and we had no idea what we’d be able to carry on doing as musicians and how much would have to go by the way-side.

Fortunately, largely by ignoring the advice of people around us, we discovered that he not only coped with us doing a load of house concert gigs in the UK and US, he thrived in that environment, his love of music growing throughout the year, and his fascination with people being fed by all the remarkable and lovely people who came to our gigs this year.

So, I’ve been able to release four albums this year – three put out by me, and one by Trip Wamsley (his half of our two-albums-in-two-days recording project). And even then, I still have a massive quantity of music recorded and mixed that Mike Outram and I made back in February, that STILL isn’t out, but will be ASAP. I promise.

Each of the three albums I put out have been Bandcamp-only releases (The only other way to get them has been buying USB sticks at gigs) and as such, have been in profit from day one. They’ve all been available ‘pay what you think its worth’ from the off, and have all made money.

Bandcamp allocates a limited number of free downloads based on how much an artist’s listeners have paid for their work. You lot have paid so much for these albums that I have literally thousands of free downloads still available. Every time I’ve invited you to enter into this new exploration of the relationship between musician, listener and ‘value’, you’ve surprised me. For that I’m eternally grateful. I hope the music has been its own reward… 🙂

But it does mean that I can happily invite you to ‘help yourself’ to more music. You’re still most welcome to pay for it if you want to, and to be part of making it possible for people who are either just discovering what I do, or have no money, to get it without having to part with cash. Or you can – with my blessing – grab some of the albums you’ve yet to hear and stick em on your iPod, as a slightly belated Christmas/Birthday present (this week sees me entering my 39th trip round the Sun…)

Here are those three new albums I put out. But if you click through to http://music.stevelawson.net there’s a decade of music to explore.

Have at it – and PLEASE, share it around.

  • Send MP3s to your friends
  • Bluetooth tracks to their phones
  • Burn CDs
  • Make MP3 compilations of your favourite choonz and give ‘em to your dad
  • Do cover versions and stick ‘em on YouTube or Soundcloud…

That ‘Creative Commons’ bit on the licensing of the tracks means you can do that. Legally. Go for it – it’s a hell of a lot more use to me than an advert in a magazine would be.

Here’s to more musical funz in 2011…

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