Many dream about launching a career in music. Far fewer actually find the keys to success. Here is a closer look at one of the top new breakout acts of 2012, Wiping Out Thousands, and what has been working for them. See “Launching a career in music: keys to success.”
WoT is pioneering a new Minneapolis sound. Alaine Dickman’s vocal performance over Taylor Nelson’s heavy electronic mix has evolved from studio-bound electronic music to live spell-binding performances, electrifying the audience as a backup band to YACHT February 2012 according to Andrea Swensson in her blog for The Current.
Alaine Dickman was studying vocal at McNally Smith College of Music when she met Taylor Nelson. Taylor was a student but also played in The New Monarchs band. They tried a collaborative session with another friend Adam Tucker. Dickman and Nelson began producing music in a studio.”
As Nelson explained to Perfect Porridge in 2011, “we wanted full control over our own creative processes.” Nelson and Dickman recorded, produced and published their music from their own studio. They also created their own artwork, web pages and videos. They gave away much of their music and “it didn’t cost us a single dime to record or produce. So why charge people to listen to it? Music should always be free.”
Strong working relationship with a manager
Nelson said, “We feel very lucky and privileged to have such a strong working relationship with our manager Kent Horgan. He’s been a huge part of Wiping out Thousands ever since we decided to release our debut EP Reaction Machine at the beginning of the year with him steering the ship.”
Nelson continued, “ever since we first met, we have shared a vision for how new artists should go about promoting and releasing their material. The free/pay-what-you-want model is something we think is a viable option and is something more artists should take seriously. It’s not economically feasible to print hundreds of vinyl records if no one knows who you are. People are far more likely to click download if there is no paywall standing in the way.
Reaction Machine was incredibly well received, and we were not expecting that at all. But we do feel that giving it away for free played some part in it.”
Examiner asked: “What do you feel now that you didn’t before?”
Taylor says he feels a “swell of understanding.”
“I’ve been in bands before where the focus was to make records, print it to a CD or vinyl, and then sell it. It doesn’t work the way it used to. And in some cases, it isn’t very successful and you find yourself with a closet full of vinyl records.
The internet is a real valuable tool. It has helped us put out a lot of great content. I’d rather meet my audience half way, and give my music to them for free, rather than have them not listen at all or try to find it for free somewhere else.
Coming from a music school, this was never taught. And I understand that now because it’s a huge risk. But we’ve become quite fond of it.”
The group’s first album, “Reaction Machine,” was released earlier in 2012 consisting of vocals over computer-generated music produced in a studio. They followed up with a new album, “This Came First,” in the fall of 2012. See more about the band on their website. See more news about WoT and other new bands at CBS Minnesota.
Wiping Out Thousands is the first of a series on careers in music.
Related: 2012 Sounded Good: The Best Breakout Music Acts In Minnesota
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