Getting funded by a record label
In my life i have, and am still, dealing with debt. My goal is to get out of debt and to stay that way for the rest of my life. I have thought about how that will apply to any bands that i am in that will sign with a record label (indie or major). So here are my thoughts as to how i think my band, and any band really, should handle the issue of going into debt with any record label.
Bands usually brrow money from record labels when they are on the label to finance a tour or the making of an album. Then they have to pay this money back. Most of the times this leaves the band in debt to the label. My goal is to not go into debt with a label EVER. As a matter of fact my goal is to not go in debt in any way 99.9 % of the time.
I think that a band should find a way to where they dont have to go into debt with their label to make an album or to fund a tour or to distribute their album when they make one. I think that a band should save the money themselves to make their own albums and to finance their own tours. I think that once they get going in this way that they can keep doing this better and better with the money that they make from each new album and each new tour. That way the albums can get better production and the tours can get bigger and bigger.
I think that if a band cant afford to distribute a huge number of albums without going into debt with their label that they should just distribute all that they can until they can afford to distribute more albums. This may take longer to get albums into more fans hands but it will keep the band out of debt with the label and ultimately put more money in the bands pocket. I also feel that if a band cant fund a big tour on their own that they should start small and build it up from there until they can fund a huge tour all with their own money. Again, this would keep them out of debt with the label and this would put more money in the bands pocket.
I think that a band should not take any cash advances from a label because this is just going to put the band over a barrel with the lable for who knows how long. If a lable says that they wont sign a band if they wont go into debt with them and if the band wont take money advances from them i think that they band should not sign with them.
The way that i think is the best way for a band to be on a label is for the label to have the distribution and marketing ability to help the band. But only as so much that the band can pay for it themselves. So that the more money the band has coming in the bigger things get. But not going into debt with the label, or anyone else, to get bigger. That way the label can push the bands albums into bigger markets and advertise in bigger magazines and websites but only with the money that the band gives them.
The whole thing for me is keeping my bands that im in out of debt with labels and anyone else that way we dont end up getting messed over and that way the label does not have leverage over my bands.
What are all of your thoughts on these things?