Thru the 'Storm
We have nothing really to add to the millions of posts that are out there just now. We have no profound vision nor philosophical response and those that know me personally know that I'm unlikely to be lighting up the Internet with my positive outlooks!
We will keep you informed over the coming months on where we are with WinterStorm but we are not going to double guess anything and you know what, we don't think anyone's sitting out there hanging on for our news or band announcements.
It is painful to see the damage that is being inflicted on those around us. Our main business is the hospitality sector and our friends' and clients' businesses are being destroyed and even more close to home we see posts from those that make WinterStorm happen with no gigs, no tours, no revenue for the foreseeable future.
It is also certain that individuals will not only be hurting from the threat of the virus but the loss of their social link to the outside world. We've said before how WinterStorm has a community edge to it that raises spirits and takes people out of the worries of their daily trials and tribulations. The effects of this isolation for many of us could be devastating. We all need to do what we can for others; and those of that need to we need to reach out and ask for help. There will be someone on this site who can and will help.
We don't have any big solutions - and indeed we are victims in a smaller way too - but where we can we will support those people and the bands who are now in a hiatus. Below are some small ideas that we have been playing about with and some that will depend on severity of future restrictions on movement and of course we will support the bands that have supported us over the past four years with links to merch and music wherever we can.
We are all in this together and only together will we get Thru the 'Storm.
WinterStorm Live Sets
Over the past three years we have been recording almost every song that's been played on the WinterStorm stage. This admittedly did get us into a little bother in some areas but the content was never being filmed for commercial use nor was it there to contravene any copyright or licensing. We have put out this morning a notice of interest to every band that's performed asking whether or not they would be interested in allowing us to edit down each set and publish online behind a paywall. We've had a surprising number of positives and we are going to go to full production on a test live set immediately.
The following is the plan - and please be aware that as we all know in this new world plans are subject to radical change...
We will edit down and produce the first video and then publish online at a price to be decided for viewing behind a subscription or fee. This is not going to be a remixed Live and Dangerous style video production - it will be raw in certain places but is a multi cam HD production and having seen the YouTube videos we've produced it capture the whole essence of WinterStorm.
(See WinterStorm YouTube Channel for examples - and please subscribe)
The revenues will be split in a number of ways and once this has been worked out will be made totally transparent. Subscribers will know exactly how much is going where
- The bands will be the major beneficiary of all revenues
- A split will got towards paying video editors and producers
- A split will got to the WinterStorm sound and light professionals to help through their own current crisis
- Any balances will go towards WinterStorm and South Beach Sessions
There are a number of issues that we remain cognisant of
- Pricing must be affordable but must also recognise there is a reason for doing this.
- There MUST be an option for those who cannot afford the videos to view with a code for FREEVIEW.
One of the things that we can do reasonably quickly is to create band merchandise pages for every band that has played on either the main or South Beach Sessions stage. Direct merch and CD sales will at this time put a higher perecentage of each pound spent into bands' pockets than anything else. We've already asked the bands to provide us with three key links
- To their general merchandise store
- To a preferred piece of merch
- To their preferred CD outlet
WinterStorm will take NO commission on these sales nor charge the bands for set up of the page. We'll promote it as far as we can and hopefully you'll do the rest of the work and distribute to your own groups and channels.
This is an area that we are actively pursuing but it may depend on changing conditions relating to lock downs and travel restrictions but if we can achieve this we will start giving more details on exclusive LIVE performances streamed from our channel. Exciting but only on the drawing board.
We've already had the comment about charging for streams when so much is free and of course we get that but our counter argument is that at this moment in time the last thing bands of any size and artistes even acoustic should think twice about giving all of their live performances away for free. It's a bit like giving all your recorded music through the low revenues channels ahead of direct. We may not be right on this one but if we can create a series of exclusive full live production sets then with a similar sales split we can possibly keep some bands and professionals paid.
We're not sure what of the above we're going to be able to fully roll out as it is pretty resource heavy and we will have to identify additional resource in terms of video editing and production and then set up and management of the streaming and subscription services but this is our direction of travel right now. It seems to be worth a roll of the dice...
Please comment on the related posts on Facebook with any thoughts and feedback.