The Nashville Project

 2019 was a big year for me:  I traveled to Montreal with a group of Alaska musicians to attend and perform at Folk Alliance International; I was awarded a full scholarship to attend Miles of Music Camp in New Hampshire (an amazing experience); I had the honor of playing with an incredible band at some of Alaska's best summer music festivals; I traveled to Boston to play at Club Passim's Campfire. music festival over the Labor Day weekend. And then if that wasn't enough, it got even better... 

This fall I was offered the opportunity to work with a musician whom I've admired for years: JT Nero from the Birds of Chicago. I had the pleasure of meeting JT and his incredibly talented wife Alli at a concert in Anchorage produced by Whistling Swan Productions. Getting to record with JT is a dream come true. So, this February, I'm heading to Nashville to make that happen. It will be my first time turning over control to a producer, and the first time my music will have full orchestration. And while I have a big chunk of money saved to help pay for this recording, making the music is just the beginning. There's also production costs, promotional costs, and hopefully this time around, a real tour outside of Alaska.   

To fill my funding gaps, I'm using the Bandzoogle platform to crowdfund for this album (they host my website, too). I hope to raise $8,000 through this effort and all of the money raised will go DIRECTLY to the project. Did you know Kickstarter takes about 5% of a successful project's earnings? That, along with processing fees, would total up to $900 of my project goal. So, we are doing all the leg-work on our end to make this work with project tracking, follow-up, etc. When I meet my fundraising goal, that extra effort will have paid off and your money will go farther in helping me make this project a real success.  

If you believe in my music, then I hope you will support this project at the level you feel most comfortable with. I have a lot of fun rewards lined up (see them at the right or below, depending on what kind of device you are working from). If you are unable to contribute financially, then you can still help me considerably by raising awareness about this crowdfunding campaign. Please share!   

Thank you so much. I am so grateful for the support so many of you have already shown me through the years. I think this project is going to be really special and I hope you will be part of it. 

Sincerely, 

Ava

Here's my (well-worn) signed CD from JT Nero and Allison Russell following the Birds of Chicago's Anchorage concert in 2017. Note, Steve Dawson was part of their band that night (also signed!), and it is his studio where I'll be recording this Feb. He'll also be playing on my album. Feeling pretty lucky with all that!

Project Budget

Making music costs money. I am taking all the steps possible to make this album work on a budget, even though I'm traveling farther and going for a bigger sound than in projects past. Not including travel (which my parents have graciously gifted to me), I estimate the album costs at around $15,000. The hard costs include studio time, sound engineering, mixing, mastering, musician fees, and production/distribution costs. This crowdfunding campaign is obviously not intended to cover the total project costs, but I am hoping to raise a minimum of $8,000. It's still a big amount of money to raise in a short amount of time (30 days!), but with your help, I think it is entirely doable.

Project timeline 

I am heading to Nashville just before the President's Day weekend and will spend three days in the studio, working as long as it takes to get the right take. When I first started talking with JT, I was heartened to know that he likes making live recordings with as little manipulation to the music after the fact as possible. I want the music to sound real. Sometimes it's the tiny imperfections that you fall in love with. So, that's the sound we are going for, and with his musician friends lending their talent to the album, we should be able to make some beautiful sounds in short order. Mixing and mastering will happen soon after the recording, but artwork and production will take a bit longer. While I'd love to have the project finished in time for the start of summer, I am realistic in knowing that I am working with some pretty in-demand people and timelines may slip. I also need to make sure to allow for proper promotion this time around. I want the music that we make in Nashville to reach as many ears as possible, and that means teaming up with the right publicity folks for the album launch. So, all that said, the very latest I anticipate releasing the music is in August 2020. We will have a heck of a party once that happens, and you will all be invited to attend!

project risks

This project is happening! You will 100% receive the rewards identified with the contribution levels noted on this crowdfunding page. For me the risk is not making enough through this campaign to ensure the extra funds needed to do the right kind of promotion once the recording is complete. But that's on me. You should feel confident that in contributing, you will reap your well-earned rewards. Thank you so very much for believing in me!

The campaign is closed, so reward options now say "not available." Thank you so much for all who contributed, shared, and sent messages of support.

The campaign is closed, so reward options now say "not available." Thank you so much for all who contributed, shared, and sent messages of support.

_______________________________

so many rewards!

Here's the fun stuff! Click on the image for more information about each support package. Shipping and handling fees are included in the base price for backers in the US. International backers will be charged a small fee for shipping and handling.

#1 - The Earl-y Bird
  • #1 - The Earl-y Bird
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

Yours will be among the first ears to hear the new music I'm working on. Before the official release, I'll send you a link to a digital download of the album. You'll also get a high-quality sticker made from my original artwork.

Read more… close
#2 - The Traditionalist
  • #2 - The Traditionalist
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

You may not have a CD player in your house or car, but you are true music lover because you want the artwork, the liner notes, the lyrics. You'll get that with this package. Plus, you'll also receive the early digital download, sticker, and thank you note.

Read more… close
#3 - The Steady Beat
  • #3 - The Steady Beat
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

You are the steady beat of this crowdfunding campaign and will be rewarded with a super soft t-shirt made special for this occasion. You'll also get the signed cd, early release digital download, sticker, and thank you note.

Read more… close
#4 - The Thinker
  • #4 - The Thinker
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

You have deep thoughts and they need a place to go. With a campaign-customized "Nashville Dreamin'" Moleskine notebook, you've found a safe place for all those big ideas. Keep a journal, write a story, maybe even a song. With this package, you will also receive the super-soft campaign t-shirt, a signed cd, the early release digital download, a sticker, and a thank you note.

Read more… close
#5 - The Show-Off
  • #5 - The Show-Off
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

You deserve the recognition. I really couldn't make this album without you. So, let's make it official with your name in the liner notes. In addition to my public display of gratitude, you will receive the too-cool-for-school customized campaign Moleskine notebook, a super-soft campaign t-shirt, a signed cd, the early release digital download, a sticker, and a thank you note.

Read more… close
#6 - The Believer  (sold out!)
  • #6 - The Believer  (sold out!)
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

You believe in me, and I believe in you. With this package (limited to four contributors on this campaign), I will write you a song based on a prompt you provide me. I'll write it, record it, and master it so you have a high quality recording of what you inspired. In addition to the song, you'll see your name in the liner notes, get one of the too-cool-for-school customized campaign Moleskine notebooks, a super-soft campaign t-shirt, a signed cd, the early release digital download, a sticker, and a thank you note.

Read more… close
#7 - The Entertainer (only 1 remaining!)
  • #7 - The Entertainer (only 1 remaining!)
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

You like parties, and so do I. How about you throw one, and I'll provide the music? This could be a fundraiser for your favorite non-profit, a summer backyard event, a wedding performance, or whatever you want, assuming you live within 3 hours of Girdwood, Alaska. I'll make myself as available as possible to your desired dates, but we'll have to have some give-and-take since I'm a student and I'll be traveling a bit this summer. In addition to the house concert (90 min or less), you will receive credits in the liner notes, a too-cool-for-school customized campaign Moleskine notebook, a super-soft campaign t-shirt, a signed cd, the early release digital download, a sticker, and a thank you note.

Read more… close
#8 - The Overachiever
  • #8 - The Overachiever
In cart Not available Out of stock
Not available

We are kindred spirits and I am thankful for your support! You get a piece of my heart, along with a public display of gratitude in the liner notes, the too-cool-for-school customized campaign Moleskine notebook, a super-soft campaign t-shirt, a signed cd, the early release digital download, a sticker, and a thank you note.

Read more… close