Peninsula singer-songwriter's Kickstarter campaign at critical point
By Charlie Bermant
Peninsula Daily News
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The 33-year-old singer-songwriter from Greenland now living in Port Townsend is seeking financing for his second album, which he wants to create, independent of a record label, through Kickstarter, a website where individuals can invest in a new project and get rewards at its completion.
The pop singer's goal for the campaign, which ends Friday, is $35,000. If he doesn't reach it, any money he raises must be returned.
As of Sunday, he had raised $14,443 from 303 donors in the effort he launched Feb. 13 — 41.2 percent of his goal — but he is not discouraged, although he said he has no contingency plan in place.
“I've gotta keep the faith,” said Lynge, who grew up in Greenland and lived in Denmark before moving to Los Angeles and then to Port Townsend, where he has lived for six years.
“A lot of people know about this, and they often wait until the last minute,” Lynge said.
“The larger donors usually come in at the end.”
As of Sunday, 40 people had pledged $40 or more. Thirty are giving $100 or more, 10 backers pledged $135 or more, and there was one donor each at the $265, $300, and $1,000 levels.
So far, there had been no takers for the top three levels: $1,200, $2,000 and $5,000.
The latter donation receives the prize of accompanying Lynge to Greenland to fish and hunt with him and his father, and be entertained by music amid icebergs, the website said, adding that air fare is not included.
If the goal isn't reached within the allotted time period, the money is returned, and the campaign starts over.
Kickstarter is a popular financing tool for artists and musicians who want to work outside of the music industry and maintain control over the final product.
The Quilcene band Locust Street Taxi raised $4,167 to complete its latest album, and singer Jenna Marit, Lynge's wife, took in $7,500 for an album through Kickstarter.
Lynge said his $35,000 goal is the amount he needs to do it right.
He already has released one album, “The Future,” and has toured Europe several times, where he seems more popular than in his adopted home.
“I'm not going to make an album in Port Townsend,” Lynge said.
“I've arranged to use musicians who are the cream of the crop, and they don't work for free.
“I want my music to have a broad appeal, and I want to work with people who are really good because it elevates what I do.”
Lynge said he will make sacrifices in order to maintain control over his art and is not attempting to affiliate with a major label.
“Labels invest money in creating a product,” he said.
“Unless you have a real track record doing something on your own, they want to have a say about what you do and what the sound will be,” he said.
“I wanted to avoid people with suits telling me how my album should sound because it would have meant compromising the art.”
Lynge's music now helps support himself and his family: Marit, son Django, 5, and a baby that is due March 2. But a musician's income, he said, can be touch and go.
“As great as Spotify [a digital music service] is for finding new music, it doesn't pay much.
“I can get 55,000 plays of my songs but only receive about $75,” he said.
“And a lot of young people think music should be free,” he added.
“They don't mind paying $1,100 for a laptop or $500 for an iPad, but they won't pay $8 for an album or 99 cents for a song.”
Lynge hopes that the new album's success will get him off the travel treadmill. In the past few years, he's been out of town about half the time.
“One of my goals is to have my music heard in America,” he said.
“With the baby on the way, I'd like to be closer to home.”
To donate, see http://tinyurl.com/b78pmbj.
Jefferson County Editor Charlie Bermant can be reached at 360-385-2335 or at email@example.com.
Last modified: March 10. 2013 6:18PM