Musicians are having a hard enough time selling their wares these days -- imagine if they tried to sell folks on the mere promise of something.
That's what signer-songwriter William James "Bleu" McAuley III did earlier this year. Using a campaign through the increasingly popular Kickstarter.com, Bleu joined myriad artists (the Deadly Syndrome, Casxio and the Monolators are among the other locals who've gone this route) in asking fans to fund the making of his new album.
Bleu's goal was modest -- raise $8,000 in 40 days -- even if his track record was a bit iffy: His previous album A Watched Pot was recorded in 2005 but not released until 2009 (a label dispute over rights to the album was involved.) Then again, the 35-year-old has a rep as a guy who can turn a phrase and write irresistible hooks.
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Turns out Bleu has fans, and fans with deep pockets. His Kickstarter campaign raised $40,000 in pledges, and his latest album Four will be released in November on his own cheekily named The Major Label. And, yes, the album lives up to its promise as a stick of power-pop dynamite.
Expect the mood to be upbeat tonight at the Hotel Cafe, where Bleu will be joined by frequent collaborator Mike Viola (members of Rooney also play in his band).
Elsewhere: Riding a wave of critical acclaim for their fifth album Lisbon, the Walkmen headline the Music Box, with red-hot garage rockers Japandroids opening. ... The Melvins bring the heavy stuff to the Troubadour. ... And folk singers AA Bondy and JBM team up at Spaceland.
Also: Black Rebel Motorcycle Club at the Glass House; Mark Kozelek at Largo; Diabia$e, Low Limit and Blank Blue at Low End Theory at the Airliner; U.S. Royalty, Chasing Kings, Line and Circle and the Smiles at the Bootleg Theater; Lyon Crowns at the Viper Room; Bob Wayne & Linda Kay at the Mint; Another Perfect Crime at the Silverlake Lounge; and Stab City at the Redwood Bar.