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Will Oldham
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Joined: 14 Dec 2005
Posts: 1782
Location: Kent, England

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2006 6:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess it depends who you are intending to sell the albums to, we are all pretty die hard fans who want to buy these albums in their original complete form. we want '37 slightly different versions of the same song' and 12 single albums is far superior to 1 double or treble album and really its us that are gonna be the people buying it however you put the stuff out as even if you went down the double album path, its not gonna be a greatest hits type venture to attract people who don't know much of your stuff. I can only speak for myself but with regards to any of your doubts over quality etc, I know what Im getting, and im prepaired to pay for it. I've wanted to get hold of this early stuff for ages. no body has to buy it but a lot of us will.

Its refreshing, but you do worry about to much about giving your fans a raw deal Laughing

I look forward to seeing the release/s

Nick
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jefflewis



Joined: 21 Nov 2005
Posts: 1213

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2006 10:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all -
I certainly appreciate the thoughts, keep 'em coming! I've spent a few days over at Major Matt's running all these tapes into his computer and labeling them and dividing up the tracks and trying to get the sound to be slightly better. A lot of it is worse than I thought! Most importantly I mean as far as the songwriting goes, although the sound mostly sucks too! But there IS some interesting stuff. Like the fact that my first "album", a tape from 1997, is almost all songs written and sung by Jack! Except for the opening track which is a (bad) jazzy cover of a Jethro Tull instrumental!
I guess the point of the debate comes down to my manufacturing costs and the time involved. See, if I am really to make a release out of something it's a lot cheaper and easier to make a greater quantity - say, 300 copies of an album on CDR (to make real CDs I think I'd have to make a minimum of 1,000). This is what I do with the Collaborations album - I just order a batch of 200 and all I have to do is pick them up at the place, I don't have to go buy CDRs and spend time burning copies on my computer and writing the information on each one, at quantities of 200 or more, even paying a place to do it for me, the price ends up about the same as doing it myself, and it's a lot easier for me. BUT there's no way I want to make 200 or 300 copies of each of these tapes onto CDR, that would equal like three thousand Jeffrey Lewis "albums" of quite dubious quality making their way out into the world, that's probably about the same number as most of my "real" albums have sold so far in the first place! What I'm leaning towards doing is making a "best of the tapes" album of maybe 15-20 songs (there's about 100 songs total on all these tapes, though at least a dozen of the songs are already findable in much better forms on my albums). That way I can order a batch of maybe 300 or 500 of this compilation, which will be just slightly pricier but much easier for me to do than making them at home. Then, for the maybe 5 or 10 hard-core crazed completionists out there I can just make home-made copies of CDRS of the actual individual tapes, "made-to- order" if and when any orders for them come in. I think after hearing the "best of" most people will feel that 15-20 tracks of this stuff is sufficient and won't bother digging into the left-over left-overs! But if I DO have a small handful of orders for copies of any of the tapes in full form it won't be too much trouble for me to make them myself.
AND this will have the added benefit of cooling off the ardour of my 3 or 5 most crazed fans, because after hearing this mediocre crap they will no longer be crazed fans! OF course, I'm sort of kidding... I love having crazed fans! Which is why I want to keep them and not lose them by foisting crap on them... I just know, as a crazed completionist myself, I like having the option of getting everything... like, if there's bad Syd Barrett recordings in a vault somewhere, I want to hear them! Or those documentary films where you see 30 seconds of black and white Velvet Underground footage from 1966 and the filmmaker has deemed that the rest is too crappy to show... but I still want to see it! Though maybe it's better to keep some mystique? (And I'm no Velvet Underground... my mediocre crap really is just mediocre crap!)
Anyway, it's GREAT to have this message board as a way of communicating with all of you!
Jeff
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jefflewis



Joined: 21 Nov 2005
Posts: 1213

PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2006 10:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OR here's another idea -
I can just make ONE copy of all the tapes onto CDRs, with artwork, etc, make it like some kind of unique one-copy 10-CDR "box set" containing one of each thing, and give it to the message board for free - maybe Dav would hold onto it - and it could be like a "library" thing - people could write to the message board to borrow it from Dav if they want to hear any of it, or make copies of it on their own, saving me the trouble! Though maybe this is putting too much pressure into the hands of whoever has to hold onto this box set.
Just a random thought.
Hmm, maybe this doesn't even make sense in the digital age- because I might as well just upload all the songs to be downloadable somewhere for anyone who wants them, which would again have the bad effect of making crappy recordings accessible to non-fans who are just curiousity seekers, and if they are searching the web to hear what i sound like they will hear one of these bad recordings as the first thing they've heard of mine, and decide they hate me, whereas if I exercise more "quality control" over what I allow out into the world there is more of a chance that curiosity seekers will stumble on something that I actually consider to be better work.
Hmmm.
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Dav
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Joined: 30 Oct 2005
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PostPosted: Thu May 11, 2006 10:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jefflewis wrote:
OR here's another idea -
I can just make ONE copy of all the tapes onto CDRs, with artwork, etc, make it like some kind of unique one-copy 10-CDR "box set" containing one of each thing, and give it to the message board for free - maybe Dav would hold onto it - and it could be like a "library" thing - people could write to the message board to borrow it from Dav if they want to hear any of it, or make copies of it on their own, saving me the trouble! Though maybe this is putting too much pressure into the hands of whoever has to hold onto this box set.
Just a random thought.
Hmm, maybe this doesn't even make sense in the digital age- because I might as well just upload all the songs to be downloadable somewhere for anyone who wants them, which would again have the bad effect of making crappy recordings accessible to non-fans who are just curiousity seekers, and if they are searching the web to hear what i sound like they will hear one of these bad recordings as the first thing they've heard of mine, and decide they hate me, whereas if I exercise more "quality control" over what I allow out into the world there is more of a chance that curiosity seekers will stumble on something that I actually consider to be better work.
Hmmm.


awww we definitly can do that, we can make a "chain" like i send it to two users and those two users make two copies of it.....
I can handle the pression, don't worry
This way, i guess, you prevent seekers to get it.
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chocabloc



Joined: 08 Feb 2006
Posts: 144
Location: various

PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2006 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i absolutely love the idea of a box-set that can be passed around the message board. it would be sooooooo exciting when you know that it's your turn to get it. forget all this 'digital age' stuff; having an exclusive box set being mailed across the globe between fans is definitely the way to go. what a fantastically romantic notion! of course it would depend on trusting people to send it on without nicking bits of it, but i trust y'all. yes, this is definitely the right option. plus a compilation album as well.
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numberdan



Joined: 14 Apr 2006
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2006 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd love to hear more new (or at least, new to me!) Jeff and Jack Lewis material, but don't think I'm a "crazed completionist".

Maybe for me, I'd like a double album or two long-ish albums. One CD could be of songs which aren't included on any of the rough trade albums, the other (for the slight obsessive in me), of interesting casette recordings or live versions of songs I know/cover versions, which I can buy through Olive Juice music. Maybe with some cool art work too!

Along side this, since it sounds like it won't involve that much more work for you, you could copy all you're old tapes on to CD's and do the passing it around the message board thing too?

This way the completionists will still get to hear the tracks that maybe you think aren't great, which they'd probably get to hear, some how, eventually, but you still maintain some degree of quality control of material people are going o buy.

Hope this is helpful!

Editing myself: I just re-read chocablock's email; basically I agree with chocablock!!!


Last edited by numberdan on Fri May 12, 2006 3:29 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Will Oldham
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Joined: 14 Dec 2005
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PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2006 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is something very appealing about having one boxset that gets passed on from fan to fan around the world, maybe including something for everyone to sign when it is in their possesion.

this does seem to solve all the problems as well a compilation we can all buy with out you having to have thousands of albums made plus making the entire back catalogue avalible for us crazed individuals with out flooding the world with what you deem sub standard stuff (Have I just repeated what you said?!)

Anyways, It all sounds good to me so it gets my vote!
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jack fe



Joined: 08 Apr 2006
Posts: 865

PostPosted: Fri May 12, 2006 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm also loving the boxset idea. Can't wait to hear any new stuff.
And don't worry, I'll be staying a crazed fan, whatever crap you give us. Very Happy
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jack fe



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PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 2:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, and by the way Jeff, when you were on your way to Matts to remaster those old songs (an album, if you will), did you go on the L train? Anything of note happen?

Sorry, I couldn't resist. It was too obvious.
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jefflewis



Joined: 21 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I took the J train to Matt's this time just to be safe, plus it's closer to my current apartment.
But I was mugged by Jason Molina.
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moe



Joined: 29 Apr 2006
Posts: 326
Location: Liechtenstein

PostPosted: Sat May 13, 2006 3:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi....it would be cool in any way to get this stuff....

Moe
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Will Oldham
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Joined: 14 Dec 2005
Posts: 1782
Location: Kent, England

PostPosted: Sun May 14, 2006 12:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

jefflewis wrote:
I took the J train to Matt's this time just to be safe, plus it's closer to my current apartment.
But I was mugged by Jason Molina.


You have the worst luck, The rest of the musical world seem to have it in for you!

I've seen west side story, this NYC rhyming turf war can only end in tears
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ronsard58



Joined: 02 Dec 2005
Posts: 20
Location: lille, france

PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2006 6:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not sure it s good to sell a lot of thing that public don't know the sound quality (and artistic?) before,

A fan (as we are here) know who jeff is, but if i was new in your music and buy a CD with crappy sound and "bad" song i don't know i will really deceived and sure i will not buy or try to know anymore ...

I think a "big compilation" is better, more "intense" for the listener, with a lot of different things, live, demo etc ..different sound and quality in one block

Even if I"ll personnally prefer to have everything's complete...

Keep the grateful dead's spirit !

I think I have some CD to send ...
fabrice
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Dav
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2006 7:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This was posted on the olive juice my space page :

"Jeff Lewis continues to sift through and remasters over 300 minutes of home recordings and demo tapes for an outtakes and B sides release coming soon!"
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Will Oldham
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PostPosted: Thu May 18, 2006 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sounds like the decision has been made
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