February 1, 2010
Continuing her journey through Laos and beyond, Rachel explains both how difficult and rewarding it is to run her own label and get Visqueen's music out to the masses, all from the comfort of her laptop.
Hello my Chuck Taylor lacing friends, this is Rachel.
Today I’m writing from a small, hot, ancient street side table in Southeast Asia. To prove it, here is a picture of a kitty on a motorcycle. They ride dirty over here. I’m far from the Pacific Northwest, in Pakse, Laos, but there are always Visqueen emails coming into our global headquarters (my laptop), and no matter where you are in the world, the work must get done!
When I decided to put out the new album myself and start Local 638 Records (our own record label), I knew I’d have several jobs to perform. I book and schedule the shows we play. I call radio stations and let them know who we are. I’m a regular at the Post Office. I make sure the CD’s get manufactured and pressed and into local record stores. I make sure our songs are available online for people to hear. I don’t sleep very much, and I’m constantly strategizing. The most important thing that I can do (besides practicing), is make it easy for people to find us, and to get turned on. And smile, as simple as that might sound. For me that’s the whole point! To make music that makes you feel great and then play it to whoever wants to hear it. It’s funny, I read a review of our new record, “Buy this record and you will experience what it feels like to have magical glittery microscopic unicorns fly into your eardrums. Seriously.”
Who the hell knew this would be a reaction to the music we churn out, freezing our fingers off in a mouse infested (though our mouse, Jerry, is awesome) practice space? I love it. Totally surreal.
But the best part?
There’s no major corporation or giant label conglomerate blindly running our band or directing, or telling us what sounds “right”, good or bad. We can be as big or small as we want to be. If we suck, it’s our problem. It’s our responsibility, our art, pass or fail. It’s nerve wracking sometimes, putting ourselves out there, but ultimately liberating. We’re taking a chance.
You will fall flat on your face sometimes, not everyone will dig you, but you have to try. Best not to think about it, and just step on stage and tell a joke. Preferably one about your drummer.
Check in on Rachel and the gang at www.visqueenonline.com