So it's been a minute since I last posted, but there's a pretty good reason for that. First of all, we did have a death in the family a couple of weeks ago, and also this seemed like a great time to start a new business.
Actually, this business has been in the works for at least a year, and it's something I have considered doing for much longer. The idea germinated after a conversation with a young musician at the church that I used to work at. I had known her for several years and always enjoyed working with her. She was a talented vocalist, songwriter, and developing worship leader. We also played some weddings together as well as a few other special events.
One day she came up to me and asked about recording, and I basically said I would love to, but what is your budget and your musical goals? Well, she was long on goals, but short on budget. I think at the time I suggested that maybe she do some fund raising to help cover the cost of recording. But the conversation stayed with me as I considered her and a few other young songwriters who I'd been wanting to record but just didn't have the means.
I also started to view the studio a bit more philosophically once again, re-asking the same questions that prompted the original buildout:
what do I value
why do I want to spend all of our savings and spare money on music
do I mind sacrificing a lot of other worldly possessions, not to mention social status, or perhaps even career advancement, in order to invest in music production
how important is music (and the arts) to me
how do i want to spend my time
is this about me or is it part of a bigger plan, or narrative, for our family
would i regret not doing this
do i want job security or do i want satisfaction and peace in my work
do i choose music or does it choose me
Well, as you might've guessed, I decided to follow my passions and live out my stated values by starting a record label. My main reasons for doing this are as follows: I really enjoy working with young musicians and developing them, I really enjoy recording, mixing, and producing music of all kinds, and I really enjoy finding other ways to broaden the artistic reach of the studio.
So, a few weeks ago that young musician at the church I mentioned signed a piece of paper agreeing to work with me as a representative of 6:4 Records. Her name is Rachael Winters and I'm going to produce her album, and hopefully begin what will be a long-standing working relationship. She is young and very talented, but essentially untested, like me running a record label. So we will both be learning a few things in the process.
I don't know if the label is going to succeed or turn a profit. It may go down in flames. But I know that we are at least going to make a great sounding album.
More importantly, I know that I have never regretted following my passions and acting in a way consistent with my values, even if it costs me a lot personally. There's nothing more satisfying and rewarding to me than doing what you believe in deeply. I have always loved music, and by God's grace I have been given a lot of opportunities to make my living playing, recording, mixing or otherwise producing it. I'm very excited about this new venture, because it not only affords me the chance once again to create music with some great people, it's also another opportunity for me to inculcate the importance of preserving the arts among the next generation. Stay tuned!