Pearl Jam’s New Album – Love It

How Much Do We Actually Make Selling Band Shirts and Stuff?

Dig The Particulars Shirt SalesIt’s not cheap to keep a band alive. With every little dime we make, there’s someone out there with their hand out waiting for a cut of it.

Do you think that we are getting all of that fifteen bucks you dropped to buy one of our custom t-shirts? Ha! First off, we had to pay to have it made, and then we have to pay the chic that’s hawking them after our show. At most, we got a whopping three dollars to go towards buying a new set of guitar strings for the shirt that you bought during our gig.

It’s the same with all of the merchandise that we are trying to sell. The stickers, posters and key rings are all just us trying to make some extra money. And yeah, we are kinda’ using you as a walking and talking ad for our band. If someone asks you about the cool shirt you’re wearing, make sure you give us the shout out we deserve.

It works out to less than 50% profit for us for every item that we put our logo on. When you think about how cheap we are selling some of this stuff for, it makes you stop and think how we can even afford to pay our rent. No one tells you about this stuff when you first start jamming in your dad’s garage. You just think “hey, we sound cool, and that guy said we sound cool. Let’s go play some gigs.” There’s no one telling you about all the costs that go into it and all the commissions you have to pay on the little profit you can manage to make.

All of the stuff we do to try and make enough money to stay alive works that way. We have to pay for studio time, CD reproductions and printing the cover work that goes along with them. There’s barely any money left over for lunch after all of that. We’re not trying to play the “oh woe the poor starving band” card with you, we just want to give you an insider view into what it really takes to get ahead in this industry. Or in our case, stay afloat.

So what if you pay a cover charge to come see us live? Do you think we get a cut of that? Nope. The club owner is paying us a flat rate, and then banking on your covers and all of those beers that you drink. For him, it’s the more the merrier for his wallet. We think it’s cool that you all come out and see us, but not so cool that that guy is making such a big profit off of our hard work.

So there you have the dirt on what is really going on with that money you spend to help support us. You don’t have to spend more, but maybe spread the word about how rocking we are so that some of your friends will send us some love too.

How We Got the Motivation to Make Yet Another Album (3 Months Later)

Motivation

Truth

Unless you are a musician, it’s hard to grasp the constant drum of a beat that is going on inside of our heads. As we are laying track for one single, the guitar riff for the next is begging to let loose. This is what happens when you have a lot of good ideas floating around and only a 60 minute track to let them loose on.

Back in the day, it was unusual for a rock band not to release back to back albums. While people not in the know may see this as an in your face marketing ploy, musicians understand it to be that uncontrollable need to let it all out.

We weren’t completely satisfied with our last album, and know that our fans weren’t either. But we are a play from the heart kind of group and that is what our hearts felt like during recording. That release taught us a lot about recording and helped us in making this one so much better. It’s already gotten a lot of good buzz from our fans, which makes us excited to see how it goes over when we start playing the tracks at live gigs.

Our fan base is small, but loyal and we got plenty of motivation after that last album to push us into a better one right away. Don’t assume that just because we managed to put it together so fast that’s it not worth listening to. All we needed was a little push down from that pedestal to realize that no matter how many people we have interested in our music, we always have to stay on top of our game.

Fear is a powerful motivator, and it was a fear of letting our fans down again that pushed us into making another album so quickly. This one is a better reflection of our style and the music that we love to make and that our fans love to listen to. Without a doubt, we are much prouder of the work we pulled off in the studio over those last 3 months than anything else we have ever put together before.

It wasn’t without hard work. As a group we worked around the clock, experimenting with beats and refining our lyrics. The ideas for the music were already there, we had only to apply the lesson learned of making it great before putting it down on a track.

That effort shows. What we hear now are cuts that are edgy and refined, with that unique sound that made us popular in the first place.

There is not a band in history that you can point to and say that each and every track was absolutely perfect. We screwed up, we know it and we are sorry for that. But we got right back into the studio and used that experience to make some noise that is undoubtedly going to be music to your ears.