Monday, May 31, 2010

Lazy Roar Rebirth

It's been almost a year since I first conceived of Lazy Roar Records. I was in a counselor's office when I was asked what I planned on doing as a music major. I said that I wanted to do something in the industry, to make records. My counselor told me I would have to make a choice between the technical field of audio engineering or the business-oriented field of producing. Of course, I've always been more interested in the technological side of things, considering I had wanted to go into IT before deciding on a music major, but it was then that I realized that I could learn the business side much better by doing. The plan was that I should pour money into a project like this while I'm young because I'll probably never have this kind of financial irresponsibility ever again. I'd basically be paying for the experience and knowledge directly rather than paying for it through a college. I can't tell you how much I've learned of the past year, and it is because of these things I've learned that I've decided that Lazy Roar needs to be refocused. It's time for Lazy Roar to become more than just a money-sink. The next step in my education is to make Lazy Roar something that is actually meaningful.

First off, I want to broaden the focus of the music LR releases from "noise and punk" to simply "shit I like". Which majorly involves noise and punk, but I like a lot of other stuff too. I went into this project with doe eyes for the way that Not Not Fun runs their label; everything that is released has a very similar aesthetic so that, if you like one of their releases, you will probably like more of them. The label, in the way Amanda and Britt run it, is more or less an art project, a collage of music they think is groovy and fits well together. And, as much as I love their label, I've found that this approach is not the approach for me. Problem is, I just like way too much different music for this to work. Is someone who digs Sun Araw going to enjoy Wet Hair? Probably. But is someone who likes Healthy Animal necessarily going to enjoy The Dead Baron or Jailhouse Fuck? Less likely. Don't get me wrong, I regret nothing that I have released over the past year(okay, I regret one thing, but I'm not going to tell you what), but I'm sick of only thinking within the box that I've arbitrarily defined my label as sitting in. Lazy Roar should find its niche naturally, not through any forced part of mine.

Second, there may be even fewer releases. Again, I (almost) don't regret anything I've released in the past year, but I have a tendency to be too positive and accommodating towards people when it comes to releasing their stuff, a tendency that has swamped me with more work than I can handle multiple times. Not that I'm ever going to force myself to be rude to anyone, but I need to allow myself to use greater scrutiny when it comes to choosing my releases. Besides, those who have come to me before asking if I would release their material know that I am more than willing to help them find another label if I am unable to release it myself. I also push DIY and self-releasing, as the truth is that you really don't need me, the label, and if you are willing and able to put your own money and efforts towards it. And, if you do, you are likely to reap much greater reward. Anyway, the point is that Lazy Roar will be doing a lot more distro work to make up for it. Mostly because it's really easy for me and I like helping out people who don't have the means to sell their goods themselves.

Finally, past releases will start being released as free downloads. The inherent nature of running a label is that it is normally inappropriate for me to support the free downloading of the music I release. Healthy Animal has thrown both his tapes up on Mediafire the day of their release on my site and, while I don't think negatively of this at all, I've never felt it was appropriate for me to outwardly approve of downloading for free what I am supposed to be selling. Well, I am going to be changing this to an extent. It is the (rather unfortunate) nature of releasing music that not everything that I release will be heard to the extent that it deserves. That is why I feel it is important that this stuff get heard regardless. Besides, I know full well that I would never be into 2/3 of the music I'm into if it wasn't for downloading music. I also know that I wouldn't have bought the vast majority of the records I own if it wasn't for first hearing it on the internet. This is music I want you to hear, regardless of whether you paid for it or not. I'm going to throw in some extras, too.

That pretty much covers it. These are all things that will be happening slowly over this summer. I think that this is a good new turn for Lazy Roar. And, even if it's not, it will sure be a good learning experience.

Thanks for being a part of this,