It's hard to be patient at this point in the process. I had hoped for an early January release, but with the holidays and all the back-and-forth involved in finalizing the artwork that just wasn't going to be possible. It now looks like I may actually not be able to hold a release party until the end of January or -- gulp! -- early February at the soonest. I can't set a date until product is in hand, and I have to give the coffee house two weeks' minimum notice to reserve a date for the party. So I am forced to be patient.
I want to tell you that patience has its own rewards. But as someone blessed/burdened with a double dose of shpilkes (Yiddish for restlessness), I find patience to be a challenging trait to cultivate and maintain. The Hebrew word for patience is savlanut, which has a better flow to it, but which doesn't make me feel any more patient for saying it. So I wait, and try to keep busy, and look ahead to other choices that I will need to make.
How much do I charge for the physical CD? For the digital download? CD Baby offers suggested retail prices, which I can take or leave; oySongs has a set price which I must adhere to if I want to sell my music there. iTunes will usually honor CD Baby's pricing if CD Baby handles distribution to them. This is the route I took with City of Love and I see no reason to change anything. One thing that may be sightly diffent is that, with increased exposure, I may find it prudent to offer quantity pricing to synagogue gift shops and other retail outlets wanting to sell my physical album. Although the future is almost strictly in digidtal downloads, a lot of my demographic still likes to buy CDs, especially at shows. So I'm having CDs made.
I also need to figure out how to market myself as a live musician in order to get more gigs -- live shows are how you sell CDs, and there is no way around that. It's a little harder in Jewish music because the scene is so much smaller, because I live far away from the Big Jewish Centers (like New York and L. A.), and because in many cases you have to get invited to perform at various venues and events. I freely admit that I don't know how that works. Maybe it's all about whom you know, maybe it's having good enough music, and maybe it's getting the lucky break of having your music heard by someone who can help you get invited (so again, it gets back to whom you know. This is nothing new in the music business, it seems). The landscape is a little different than when my first album came out in 2003. There's the double-edged sword of having a piciker audience and also a new generation that is getting used to getting music online for cheap or free. How that translates into landing live gigs -- especially live gigs outside of Portland -- I don't yet know.
So I have to be patient and, well, just keep breathing.
Of course, as soon as the finished CDs arrive, I'll send up a flare, or rent a spotlight machine for my driveway, or hire a marching band, or something ridiculous. In any case, you'll all know as soon as it's ready to drop. I promise.