Mailing Lists, Physical Media, Podcasts / Mixes / Playlists, Website

I’ve been talking to several different label owners and radio hosts over the last few weeks. General theme of how do we lift up everyone in this genre of music – which for me is ambient and techno – the more minimal, atmospheric, dub leaning type of techno. Here’s a brief summary of some of those conversations as well as some specific thoughts and plans I have.

Mailing Lists

A label / artist / host NEEDS a mailing list. Everyone agrees there is more response from fans via email than social media. Social media is great but build your mailing list and provide them with useful information without over-saturating. I went out and looked at a lot of the mailing lists I subscribe to and they are almost all Mailchimp. https://mailchimp.com/ I plan to create a Mailchimp account and make it very easy to sign up on this site. I also plan to keep the messages short and sweet and to the point. Otherwise, I fear I’ll lose people’s interest and they’ll unsubscribe.

The Kids These Days – Physical Media

When I think of most of the people under 30 I work with – or my nieces and nephews – etc… everyone streams. I don’t see any of them excited about buying a CD or a DVD movie. Most all of them stream from Spotify, Apple, Pandora, Netflix, Amazon, Youtube. Most don’t bother downloading anymore, what’s the point when everything is instantly available somewhere? Yes – I know there are very strong supporters of physical formats – and many Ambient fans are fond of CD’s and many Techno fans of Vinyl. I’m seeing lots of vinyl kickstarters out there and seeing some beautiful vinyl releases. I know in the past it was very cost prohibitive, and hopefully that’s changed a bit since the vinyl resurgence. I don’t think vinyl or CD is truly right for Relaxed Machinery at least at this time. I’ll stick with digital only.

Podcasts / Mixes / Playlists

I’ve also been thinking about alternative ways to find ears. I’m all about getting the music in front of people so they can hear it! With Relaxed Machinery Phase I and with AtmoWorks before that – people who did mixes really helped get the word out there to introduce new people to the music we were releasing. I will of course continue to provide promo to all of the people doing mixes and reviews and all that. But, can I do some of that myself? I thought about a podcast and quickly realized that’s one heck of a legal nightmare in licensing. However, mixes on a platform like Mixcloud – where I already listen to a ton of mixes – that has possibilities. Creating playlists on Apple and Spotify? That has possibilities. I’m still exploring this – but I’d love to do a fairly regular series of great music from many other artists and labels mixed in with the music coming out on Relaxed Machinery. Platforms like Mixcloud, Apple, Spotify all pay the artists in some fashion or other – even if it’s not as good as a direct sale, it’s something. This also ties in my belief in helping everyone.

Website

So key… and so in disarray right now. I’m searching for the right wordpress template and then I’ll start building. My goal is to make it ridiculously easy to find our releases (both new and old), our artists, and key things like the mailing list and about the label.

Ok – that’s enough for now. Got some thoughts or comments? Hit me up at jrkoch5 [at] gmail

John

Time for an update!

I’ve had a couple of people reach out to me about releasing something in 2018.  Awesome.   Great to hear from old friends!

The new Relaxed Machinery will be a centralized label meaning it won’t be “self release… together” as we did the first 6 years.   I’m pulling it in and streamlining.   As always, the goal is to be a friendly partnership between rM and the artists.

I don’t think I’m going to keep the “cover art templates” like we did every year in the past.   Steve did such a cool job with those, but I think I’m going to keep it simple and have full edge to edge cover art for each album.

Standard releases will be digital on Bandcamp and distributed to digital outlets for sale / streaming.   However, special releases may be in different formats.

THE COG IS NOT GOING AWAY!   A lot of people have commented that I need to keep the cog – I never planned to drop it.  My posts and testing tagline just haven’t shown it.  It will evolve a bit, but that’s a long way from complete.

Taglines.  I still love the original tagline:   organic .: ambient :. techno

However, it feels limiting to me so I’ve been pondering it the last few weeks.  I floated a joke around the other day…

Yes!  I was kidding, but it was darn fun.  I’m a fan of old Godzilla movies.  🙂

A little more serious version – but still not the right thing… it’s a bit wordy but it explores all the aspects I see the label representing.  Ignore the font and background image:

“Adventured in…” reminds me of the old 1950’s radio show X Minus One intro:

Countdown for blastoff… X minus five, four, three, two, X minus one… Fire! [Rocket launch SFX] From the far horizons of the unknown come transcribed tales of new dimensions in time and space. These are stories of the future; adventures in which you’ll live in a million could-be years on a thousand may-be worlds. The National Broadcasting Company, in cooperation with Street & Smith, publishers of Astounding Science Fictionpresents… X Minus One

“Cinematic Vistas” represents the soundtrack music that truly inspired my love of music that I found out to be later called “ambient”.   And then “Deep Kinetics” represents the movement and the beats.

However, it’s just too long!

My wife and I have been bouncing this around and we may have a good idea on how to make this tagline be a better description of the label and of each release.

More on that in a future post.

John