DIY Album

Do It Yourself music album.
As an indie music band, we don’t have any producer / manager / artistic director / label / distributor / booking agency / designer / … which technically means, we have to do all that stuff by ourselves. It’s a bit like being an actor, one day you’re a photographer, the next day a sound engineer… or at least, we try to be !

DIY Album

All about money.

We setted up the release day for… the day after tomorrow, which means, within 2 days. In a way, we’ll be happy to be Sunday !

As we already mentioned, after long discussions, we decided to sell it for 12 euros (that’s about $15.50), including shipping costs… But what is “a” right price ?

The question is more complex than it looks at first sight. When we searched around the web, some advices were not to sell it for more than established artists. We’re not established artists. When we refer to French albums’ prices, it doesn’t seem to function that way, at least for physical CDs. Music produced by small labels tend to be much more expensive (too expensive? we’re talking about at least 20€ / $25) than mainstream records.

Where does the value of the music we play come from ? Is it about the value we think it has ? Is it about the value other people would give to it ?

show me the money - how much should we sell our diy album ?
Show me the money

We’re not planning to really earn any money directly from the sales, even if we hope our music would spread enough to get more venues. Still, we have to get at least a part of the money we invested to get it manufactured, and anyone can guess that for small quantities like ours, it gets the price per CD much higher. We’re far from talking about refunding the rest of the material, not mentioning any salary.

show me the money - how much should we sell our diy album ? 12

So far, we questioned as many people as we could about the price, and although we didn’t get any “that’s really too expensive for a self-produced album”. We could have chosen a “pay what you want” option. We could. Maybe we don’t feel yet confident enough in the value people would give to our music ? In a way we also consider that people are not only “buying” a CD from us, they’re supporting our project on a much longer term.

If you really think “that’s really too expensive”, let us know why…

§ Simone

DIY Album, Musicians' Diary

Our first sale ?

What ? Yes, of course the release will only be on the 30th. But, in the meantime we are testing the on-line BandCamp forms to order, together with the paypal system, checking how long it really takes us to get threw the all procedure, fixing the order notification, the automatic replies and so on. We are really new to this, so we really wanted to make sure ones the sales will be launched, we won’t have to come back to solve this kind of details. And ? So far it works perfectly !

Meanwhile, a little amount of albums have also been sent for promoting the album itself as well as to apply to some venues. This will also give us an idea about how long it really takes for one piece of CD to be shipped from Turkey to other countries.

USA = ABD in turkish for Amerika Birleşik Devletleri
USA = ABD in Turkish for Amerika Birleşik Devletleri

Since we are into form and data-bases, we also got a nice on-line form to sign in for our newsletter. If you sign-in you get a free mp3 from Tri Martolod an Oriant, you’ll get updates on the project, but also to special releases, to work in progress tunes, to promos & more. We’re repeating it again, not more than once a month. Pour les francophones, la version sera un peu “rallongée” pour reprendre des news développées au fil du blog en anglais. 

Last but not least, we decided to re-invest the benefit from our first sale into this artist. Sofia Talvik is Swedish, and she’s organizing herself her 2 years tour threw the US, called the Drivin’ & Dreaming tour. We were very impressed by her story that we discovered in this very interesting for CD Baby. And… of course we’d like to tour in the US !

That’s all for now, thank you for reading !

§ Simone

DIY Album, Sound & Video

2 weeks left…

1 Comment

Only two weeks left before the actual release. We’ve almost made our mind to sell the album online via Bandcamp. It has many advantages, including that those following us rather via facebook will also be able to get it directly from there.

We’re right now preparing a fun promotional video, which will include a small contest

In the meantime, here’s a taste of what it will sound like :

It’s called “tri martolod an oriant”, based on traditional tune and lyrics from Brittany, quite famous under the title “tri martolod yaouank” (3 young sailors). Share it, comment it, give feedback…

DIY Album

To sell or not to sell ?

So, yes, things are on their way, which means :

  • all the CDs are now in our hands
  • we’re still waiting for our bank’s authorization to use PayPal so that we can start… well… selling this album !
  • we started to send our album to a couple of journalists that may write reviews about it

The PayPal part is indeed tricky, much more than we would have expected it. As we’re WordPress blog users, technically we shouldn’t be using it for commercial purposes. And technically we won’t really, since in French law, our album is produced by a non profit organisation (called association loi 1901), that we declared to the authorities. The main advantage is that we’re out of the scope of VAT, which makes it makes it more flexible and easy than a company. As long as there’s no financial benefit (and for now we don’t think there would be), we may “sell” some “products” to cover the expenses. Which is… exactly the case.

donate or sell ?

To go back to WordPress and PayPal, they’ll only consider it as a sell. And PayPal “pay” button isn’t compatible with the blog itself. Only a “donation” would be. So… we’re trying to brainstorm and think about something that could easily work… Any idea is welcome…

§ Simone

DIY Album

Album boxes – part 2 ?

We’re heading to Greece this morning, if you remember, we left half of our brand new albums there, because we thought splitting the boxes would make it easier to enter Turkey. And so far it did. We’ll be there for a couple of days, which will also be an opportunity to relax in this kind of places :

Nea Peramos - Trakia
Nea Peramos – Trakia

We’ll try to find some interesting music, last time we met a very good lyra player. And we’re also preparing a video for the album’s release, we already have a couple of ideas, we need to put them together.



DIY Album

In 3-D


This is what came to my mind this morning, having the CDs on hand makes them real, I’ve seen the graphics on screen for weeks and then… they’re in my hands !

Astrakan Project first album
it is real !

Not all of them, we left a big box in Greece that we’ll get back within a week, but we have enough of them to start promoting. We need some time to prepare the web-site, and open a pay pall account so that anyone will be able to order from… anywhere ! So we’ve thought official release would be on September the 30th, for Full Moon. We’re probably gonna be playing around in Istanbul for the release but for those following us online, here, but also on FaceBook, on YouTube, or on our newsletter we’re thinking about a nice way to lunch the album. And… we have come up with a couple of interesting ideas we’re happy and excited to start sharing with you !

Thank you all, again, Simone & Astrakan Project

DIY Album

At the borders

If you’re following us on Facebook, you already know we got the CDs from the factory in Germany – we’re really happy, they look great, and it’s a relief, the sound is good, and the visual, oh, well… the colours are really vibrant and shiny, much beter than what we would have expected.

So, we’re on the road to Istanbul, and we had to deal with a couple of unexpected situations regarding custom’ regulations. The sound is not really good, it was really windy this morning, but it should give you an idea of what is going on…

DIY Album

We’re heading to Germany !

For two days now, we’ve been busy finding a new company (remember ?) that could manufacture our Album in Europe, at a decent price. And luckily, we found one in the south of Germany (in English here), everything will be processed at the same place, including cover printing. We got them already a few times on the phone, and it’s really nice for a small release like we are to have such a nice and direct contact.

The funniest part of the story, is that they’ll be able to manufacture it within 10 to 12 days… and that we can claim the album directly at the factory ! Because, by chance, the location happens to be on our way back to Istanbul, which will also save us a little amount of money. And it can be funny experience, isn’t it ?

The other good new then is that we’ll be able to release to album by the 1st of October, much earlier that what we were expecting. But for now… let’s go back the wonderful world of administrative authorisations and paperwork !