CROWDFUNDING RADAR: Amy LaVere, Lee Coulter & Dixie Matthews, and a Pete Seeger Tribute
Amy LaVere (photo by Amos Perrine)
As the old saying goes, nature abhors a vacuum, and that has certainly been the case in the crowdfunding world. The temporary (maybe) loss of PledgeMusic has led to a boom on other crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo, with some more established artists moving to those platforms alongside the young acts looking for a boost. For this edition of Crowdfunding Radar, I’ve got a mixed bag of all of them, from one of roots music’s brightest stars to a pair of Pete Seeger’s pals honoring a specific vein of their friend’s musical output, to a debut album from a duo who scored a surprise hit with a one-off collaboration.
Amy LaVere – A Color Scheme
While it’s been five years since Amy LaVere’s last solo studio album, she’s been far from idle. From performing with John Paul Keith in the band Motel Mirrors to contributing songs to Luther Dickinson’s Sisters of the Strawberry Moon project, LaVere has maintained her presence on the roots music scene and continued her ascent as one of its stars to watch. But now she’s returning to solo work with A Color Scheme, which has already been recorded and is now being crowdfunded on Indiegogo for final mixing, artwork, and promotion. LaVere is aiming for a summer 2019 release. Just a few days into the campaign, she’s already over 25% of the way to her $15,000 goal, so there is obvious appetite for LaVere’s vocal and upright bass talents. Backer rewards for the campaign include the new album via download and CD, vinyl copies of her two solo albums and the two Motel Mirrors albums, an 8×10 photo of LaVere’s “road pup” Isla, and a house concert from LaVere and Will Sexton.
The RIX – Steering Pete’s Course
Rik Palieri and Rick Nestler are both longtime collaborators with the late folk legend Pete Seeger. Both men started singing with Seeger in the ’70s and wanted to honor him with an album together, recorded under the name The RIX. With such a vast library of songs, The RIX decided to focus on one of the less covered areas of Seeger’s catalog, his maritime songs. Steering Pete’s Course features 19 of Seeger’s songs about rivers and oceans, including favorites like “The River That Flows Both Ways” and deeper cuts like “The Sloop Woody Guthrie.” To help them out, The RIX also employed other Seeger friends like Guy Davis, Sarah Underhill, David Bernz, and Melissa Ortquist. Backer rewards start at $1, which gets the first 100 backers a thank you card, guitar pick, and a one song download from the album. Other rewards include the album on CD and download, a signed song sheet, and a house concert by The RIX.
Lee Coulter & Dixie Matthews – Debut Album
San Diego-based songwriters Lee Coulter and Dixie Matthews were hoping for good things when they released their 2018 one-off duet “We You Me.” What they never expected was the song to explode in Coulter’s native Australia, where it beat out pop titans like Drake and Maroon 5 to hit No. 1 on the iTunes Singles Chart. Naturally, the pair of unsigned artists decided to strike while the iron was hot and record a full duo album for a 2019 release. In addition to the album via digital and CD, backer rewards include handwritten lyric sheets, a personalized video dedication of one of their songs, a cameo appearance in their upcoming music video, and a Little Martin LX1E guitar like the one Coulter plays on stage.