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The Cleavers and Computer Technology
by Dick Eastman - Alright! Records, Posted October 2004


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The Cleavers' debut CD, Television Mind, not only depends on great original music written and performed by the band (even if I do say so myself!) but also computer technology that allowed our band to record and promote this CD with less cost and total control. This melding of science and art has created new opportunities for the independent artist. The Cleavers have been able to master the various tasks needed to record, manufacture and promote this CD by taking advantage of these computer technologies:  

1. Multiple Home Recording Studios - With home studios equipped with sophisticated yet relatively affordable recording equipment, The Cleavers achieved the same professional results that in the past could only be achieved by paying thousands of dollars to outside studios.  The band spent hundreds (maybe thousands) of hours recording Television Mind and simply could not have afforded the costs at a professional studio. Also, several of the band members have home studios that are equipped with the same Yamaha AW4416 recording board (www.aw4416.com) so we didn't need to be in the same location to record.  Dave Leeds, the bass player, recorded some of his bass parts in his home studio in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.  The majority of the CD was recorded at my home studio in Antioch, Illinois and the drummer, Ron Kaplan, recorded his drums 1,000 miles away at his home in Dallas, Texas.  Very often during mixes, we'd send an mp3 file down to Dallas for Ron's review.  Thanks to DSL (another important ingredient in this project), it was all done in a matter of minutes. Also, due to a breakthrough in electronic drum technology, Ron achieved the sound of "live" drums with his electronic Roland V-drums (www.rolandus.com).

2. CD Design and Manufacturing - The unique photographic artwork on the cover and inside the booklet of the CD was discovered on a royalty-free website, www.picturequest.com. Working with a local graphic designer, Barbara Harper of Wilmette, Illinois, we were able to create cover, booklet and CD design over the internet, sending files and e-mails back and forth, until the artwork was just right. Then all the information was downloaded onto a disc and sent to the manufacturer, Oasis in Virginia (www.oasiscd.com).

3. Websites - Paula Eastman (hardly a technological wiz by her own account) created a website for the record company to promote the project, www.allrightrecords.com, using Site Builder at www.interland.com.  Now people around the world can visit the websites to learn about the project, sample the music, download a song, and hopefully buy a CD.

4. Worldwide Web Infrastructure - A whole infrastructure has been developed to sell and promote independent releases like Television Mind. The Internet, DSL and mp3 technology offer The Cleavers the ability to reach out and tell others about the project. The band has sold CDs of Television Mind to people throughout the United States and in England, Australia, Japan and even Iceland!

    A. Internet Sales - In addition to selling the CD through their website, www.allrightrecords.com  using Paypal, the band also offers Television Mind through www.cdbaby.com, the leading internet seller of independent music. CDbaby will soon be making digital downloads of the songs available on iTunes.

    B. Internet Radio - Hundreds of Internet radio sites are playing independent music.  One of the songs from Television Mind, "Jungle of Love", is in rotation on www.aiiradio.net, an internet radio station based in Essex, England, and has climbed their charts to #2 during the week of  July 5, 2004.

    C. Internet Communities - There are communities of people who are listening to and discussing all different types of music on the Internet. Ron Kaplan used his contacts from the Yahoo message board regarding the Yamaha AW4416 to help the band master the recording process. An informative site about promoting and selling on the Internet is www.musicbizacademy.com. Also, Television Mind has been accepted for inclusion on these pop music websites: www.webcds.com, www.koolkatmusik.com, and www.notlamerecords.com.

Our project, Television Mind, probably could not have been accomplished five years ago. Now the timing is just right for the independent artist to be able to record and promote music that fulfills 

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Dick Eastman, along with his duties as a member of The Cleavers, has become a producer/engineer/record company president/booking agent/publicist in order to record and promote Television Mind, The Cleavers' debut CD. Check out www.allrightrecords.com for more information about this project.
 


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