Happy New Year, friends! I always look forward to every holiday but the New Year’s celebration always feels extra special. I know that some people hate the concept of a “new year, new beginning” but, personally, I absolutely love it! It’s the perfect time to re-evaluate everything around you, make changes and dive into your life again with a new, fresh attitude and a ridiculously huge amount of enthusiasm.

As you might have read in my previous article called Music Identity Crisis, 2017 was quite a complicated year for me. It was definitely a rollercoaster with equal parts of ups and downs. I struggled with identifying my own music and then I had to take some time off to find what felt right. However, closer to the end of the year, when I finally felt like I was ready, I started making some preparations for a new chapter of my music career: my new EP project!

The thoughts about releasing my second EP had been at the back of my mind for quite some time. I never really stopped writing new songs and every time I’d come up with new material, I’d always assess it based on whether the song was good enough to be included in a new hypothetical EP. Unfortunately, due to multiple circumstances, it took a while before I could start thinking of the second EP as a feasible project that I could undertake! However, they say good things come to those who wait and in September 2017 it finally started to look like the new EP idea could actually become a reality.

The possibility of starting a brand new project was really exciting. Since the release of my first EP “Visitor”, learnt so much about different aspects of music production and releasing that I couldn’t wait to put that knowledge into practice. I had plenty of time to think my plan through and I knew that, if everything fell into place, my new EP could take my music career to the next level. However, there was still one more thing to take care of before I could say yes to the new project.

As a fully independent artist, I have total control over my career. I make all the creative and business decisions myself and I rely solely on my own capabilities. Most of the time this freedom is amazing, however, it does come with one major downside: as well as being my own manager, I also have to be my own sponsor. And as you can imagine, funding a whole EP project can be difficult.

Previously, I managed to release music with little to no funds at all, which was exceptionally lucky. My single “Energy” was recorded as a collaboration with Andrea Adriano and the video for the single was shot at Bridgewater & Taunton College as part of Kerrie Slopper’s work experience programme. Apart from some extra expenses that I had to cover, like mastering the track and distributing it online, I was really lucky to be able to find people who were willing to work with me purely for the joy of creativity. Unfortunately, there is only so much you can do without a proper budget. Your resources and your reach are very limited and with my new EP project, I didn’t want to settle for less anymore.

So, where could I get the funding I needed? The most obvious answer was to try and save as much as possible. That option was definitely my safest bet but for that, I’d have to postpone my project for an indefinite period of time until I had enough to set the wheels in motion. Even though I did start saving, I was sick of waiting around! I wanted to start the project as soon as possible!

My next option was to seek funding opportunities. I reviewed multiple grants and schemes available for the independent musicians residing in the UK. As expected, the application process was very complicated and the timescales were often drawn-out. I made a few applications and even got through a few stages but due to the ridiculous level of competition and many other factors, I never got selected as a winner.


Photo by Mar Reyes

I struggled to find the right sponsorship programme that would select my project but I definitely wasn’t willing to give up. I was determined to make it one way or another and that’s when I decided to take a huge risk and to launch a crowdfunding campaign.

Anybody who has ever had a campaign of their own or has followed one online knows how unpredictable crowdfunding can be. You can have all the support in the world and people might get really excited about the prospects of new music but not everyone would be willing to jump on board of your campaign and subsequently you still might fail to raise enough for your target. This would mean that despite all that effort put into the campaign, you would get absolutely nothing and would be starting again at ground zero.

Despite all the risks and uncertainty associated with crowdfunding, I decided to give it a go! On 21 November 2017, I launched my very first crowdfunding campaign in support of my New EP Project, and the whole experience has been very educational! Notwithstanding the fact that the campaign has been launched with an obvious financial motive to sponsor the future EP,  running it has helped me build a community around my music and allowed me to invite my audience behind the scenes of preparing a music release. Only time will tell how successful is going to be this idea but I can say for sure that with the launch of the campaign, a new chapter in my music career has been opened!