Archeology Records is a music distribution label bringing under-heard garage bands, buskers, outsider artists, and renegade musicians to worldwide audiences through community building and digital-fu.
In brief: Archeology Records partners with artists for digital distribution and community promotion for their (possibly forgotten) musical treasures.
Artists own their masters and responsible for all creative direction > we take a split (automatic) > music gets heard. PS Originals only.
Have a shoebox of your most-excellent CDs in your garage? Recordings you always meant to “finish and release”? Can’t be fcked learning how to upload to all the channels and find audience? Great, let’s do a project. Get in touch.
Canadian broadcaster Grant Lawrence posted a bit on CBC Radio 3 blog (now disappeared from internet and not archived) about “Backup Job Plans for Musicians” and i chimed in with unsolicited advice, [the article seems to be lost from the internets as cbcradio3 has ummm… disbanded] anyhow, ergo:
My advice is to have a backup plan which used your skills to help other bands. Keeps you in the mix and gives you an opportunity to share your knowledge and skills with other band folks who are on similar path/mission/trajectory as your own.
A few good ideas:
Silkscreen T-shirts / Merch Master:
Every band needs these and a lot of bands fuck this up or pay too much. Not just T-shirts, but other smart merchandise. At my day job, we made passports, tubes, guitar picks, stickers, scarves, flags… Get creative with your merch and people will buy it. Seriously, they want to give ya bread to keep participating in your culture.
I mean being a real designer, not just someone with Photoshop on a computer, to make poster art and album covers and so on. Packaging and March are too critical elements about the music business which are often overlooked. Look at the career (Vancouver legend) Bob Masse has built for himself since the mid 60s making awesome posters.
Social media promoter/community builder:
Fans are communities who desperately want to learn more about their favourite musicians, spend their money and rock out. Social media is the best way to build this community. Labels, bands and promoters are just catching on… Perhaps you can help them.
This one seems obvious and as difficult as making it as a musician but, with radical changes in the way music is recorded and released, there is huge potential for someone who understands both analog and digital recording methods.
Most bands have someone that kind of knows this game or they become too reliant on the labels, managers etc. If you are a touring road warrior who has built relationships with clubs, venues etc. but aren’t up for it anymore, work the phone and help emerging bands set up tours. You won’t get rich doing it for one band but doing it for 10 will pad your stats, especially when one of the bands hits big.
This seems a little reality TV-ish but many bands don’t have someone to instruct and advise them and care about them. Managers and labels usually don’t have the resources to dedicate to merging bands and so they are left to making mistakes and put in their career in someone else’s hands. Bands often need someone who has a deep long history with the music business but also has the empathy and insight to counsel and advise them on band dynamics. The right advisor can make the difference between a two album “flash in the pan” band and a generational band who last for decades.
The things we make in the rapid pace of creativity, often fall judgement to our own perfectionism and subjectivity at the time,… But, one stashed away and preserved, they can become artefacts that show us how we became ourselves. Additionally, by preserving output made by our co-conspirators and collaborators, we can help fill in the gap’s of their stories.
In this case, videos made by my dear pals:
Brandon G Kiggins (Formerly of Utah, now of Brooklyn/NYU) “the environmentalist” (award-winning)
Eiji Masuda #RIP Japan who was my collaborator on the pioneering digital doc Hempen Road (20 years old this year) “Mistaking the shadow” #Experimental
A documentary about the Russian revolution “The beginning of our troubles” made by my Uncle Mark Bannatyne while at USU doing graduate studies
A film by my Mom Lauralee Elliott #RIP with significant assistance from the aforementioned Brandon Kiggins, while at #UVCC “Tattoo”, note: long before everyone had a tattoo :-)
A public TV show which broadcast clips from the previously mentioned Hempen Road on “Master Weed theater”
The one labelled “Giggling Piglet Co-op” features me and the Japanese girl on the island of Guam demonstrating flower sticks and talking about the Grateful Dead and Jerry Garcia who had recently died on a show called “Buenas”, and might… also contain a similar juggling stick performance from Tottori, Japan which appeared on the nationally broadcast morning show “Zoom in Asa”.
In some cases, these might be the only remaining evidence of these diligent creative endeavors. Eventually they will be digitized and shared an archived so the hours that one into them and the inspiration which comes out of them, can pass on to others.
What do you have in your closet or shoe box which Will surprise and inspire your friends and strangers?