We're pleased to announce that for our 2011 Fall U.S. Tour, we've partnered with Lands' End Canvas. You may be asking, "What does this mean?". Well, the short answer is that Lands' End Canvas will be helping us with our tour support budget and providing us with a new wardrobe in exchange we'll be providing them some concert footage and other content for their website.
The long story is that we're an independent band who has never been under the direction or support of a record label. All of the albums we've created and tours we've gone on have been funded by us or directly by our fans. Our producer, booking agent, publicist, etc all work directly with us; as opposed to being hired by a record label. It's a very rewarding experience to be able to work with such a great team of people on our own terms.
The downside is that growing a band is a arduous task and it becomes exponentially harder with less and less money. Touring, the U.S. in particular, is very expensive. The U.S. is a massive country with long drives in between major cities. The cost of gas alone on a tour is thousands and thousands of dollars. Let alone other vehicle maintenance, food, lodging, etc. Traditionally in these instances a record label will help float these costs while a band grows their fan base to where their income outweighs the cost of bringing music to their fans. Since we're not on a record label, we don't have this luxury.
We've never been a band to let obstacles stand in our way; and with every obstacle there is a new opportunity. When making our new album, we raised almost $12,000 directly from our fans by selling pre-orders of the record. This was a new frontier for us and an amazing show of support from our loyal fan base. Between our previous tours and now, our fan base has grown, and bunches of new fans have popped up in cities all over the U.S. and thanks to the internet, all over the world.
In response to this growth we are setting out on our most ambitious tour to date. Spanning nearly 10 weeks and hitting all corners of the U.S., we're hoping to see as many of you in person as possible at one of our 50 shows between now and December. Thanks to Lands' End Canvas, this has become a reality. They're assuming the role of a record label and providing the tour support we need. In exchange, they'll get access to some exclusive concert footage and our music to share with with their consumer base on their website. They're even going to spiffy up the exterior of our RV with a nice custom wrap job.
I can hear the cynical inner monologue in some of you out there, "but isn't this is selling out?" I can honestly say we feel great about this partnership. We've gotten to know the folks over at Lands' End Canvas and they've been nothing but supportive. They have a true interest in helping spread new music as well as aiding the musicians who make it. They have no interest in asking us to modify our music or alter when and where we go on tour. They only care that we're able to be on the road and share our music with new people every night. Sounds like what a record label used to do.
Sure, they're a business who's goal it is to make money just like any other business; and hopefully the cross promotion will bring some new people to their website and stores who enjoy what they have to offer. To us it's a perfect match and we couldn't be happier to be working together.
We'll see you in a city near you, soon.