Local bands try to cash in on mp3s

    A local entrepreneur has launched a way musicians can ask their fans to pay for the cost of making records.

    Downloading and sharing music has become so easy and commonplace that record labels are scrambling to figure out how to make money off of mp3s. A local entrepreneur has launched a way musicians can ask their fans to pay for the cost of making records.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090803pcmuse.mp3]

    Local blues-rock band Pawnshop Roses is on MySpace, Twitter, Facebook, and they gig 2 or 3 times a week. They need $20,000 dollars to record and promote their new batch of songs.

    With a web-based fund raising tool called Feed The Muse, the band is reaching out to those fans for donations from $1 up to $50. In return, fans might get a free music download, or their names in the liner notes.

    Feed The Muse creator Jamie Lokoff says it allows fans to participate in the band.

    Lokoff: I think that’s the direction we’re headed. A more direct relationship of fan to the artist is what you’re seeing. It’s a product of what’s happening in the music industry right now.

    In the two weeks Feed The Muse has been online, Lokoff says 50 bands have collectively earned over $5,000 dollars.

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