We made this deal with a local band that had agreed to yield all
profits from their future album, until they paid off their studio bill. We
would provide the studio time and our production talents; they were
to provide money for mastering and duplication. As we believed in
the group’s music, we agreed to the terms. I finally got the chance to
go into full production mode, on good faith that the money would
come at the end. This deal taught Chris and I to never put financial
faith in a band. At the end of the year, the band came up short on
cash for the duplication, and (against my advice) signed a record
deal that provided the extra cash flow. In March of 2002, when their
album was finally released, they were no longer in control of the
profits. They received periodic royalty checks, which they used to
pay down their studio bill. They also gave us personal money from
shows. Today, the band has broken up. The outstanding studio
balance is just over five grand.
|This is where I must interject. As pathetic as this deal was, it is
actually a common circumstance that musicians find themselves in.
It happens all the time!
The remaining studio bill will never be paid, because the two
contracted entities no longer exist. This works out for the record
company, which now sells the album the same way I sell recordings:
online. The irony is, the record company only came to own the
album so the band could get money for duplication. Now that it is
sold online, duplication is not necessary.