Indie Band Spanish Prisoners Using Kickstarter To Buy Van For SXSW Trip [VIDEO]

Gold-foolsA lot of elements go into a successful Kickstarter campaign. Spanish Prisoners combine a unique request, funding the purchase of a low-budget tour van, with unique offerings, songs recorded in the van along with other goodies from their upcoming trip to SXSW. Of course, the music needs to appeal to listeners and the pitch video needs to communicate effectively. You'll have to decide for yourself but I think Spanish Prisoners have put together a campaign that has a solid chance of success though they've only reached about $2000 of their $5000 goal.

Brooklyn-based Spanish Prisoners' Kickstarter campaign, "Make our VANTASY come true!,"  offers unique funding rewards that are tied into their desire to get a touring van and take it to SXSW in the spring. Those who pledge $20 or more receive a:

"SUBSCRIPTION TO OUR VAN SONG PROJECT! one song recorded in the van every day from March 7-31st, exclusive photos and videos of our adventures and LIMITED EDITION WOODEN POSTCARD (handmade in the US on 100% natural birch wood)"

Spanish Prisoners' Kickstarter Appeal

Though more money gets you more stuff, it's this road trip music offering that's at the core of their various bundles and ties in nicely to their funding needs. As member Mike DiSanto pointed out to Brenna Ehrlich:

"We really kind of felt like we were at this point where, to get to the next level…we needed to leave New York and specifically try to get to SXSW and play shows along the way…We're in the touring mindset, but we're also trying to look for some new ideas…We're going to try to come up with songs that might end up making it onto the next album. It'll be as though we're in our rooms demoing songs for the next album, but we'll be on tour. It will be influenced by the day's events."

Sounds like a great way to connect with supporters inspired, in part, by the campaign to rebuild The Silent Barn which won a 2011 Village Voice Web Award for Best Kickstarter Project.

Though their campaign may not receive any awards, Spanish Prisoners did receive NPR honors for having one of the 5 Best Bandcamp Albums Of 2011. The album, "Gold Fools," can be streamed on Bandcamp or downloaded for a price you name.

I think they've done a good job and have the whole package, from unique offering to pleasing music. Combined with Kickstarter's all-or-nothing funding, which commenter Jonathan Jaeger maintains adds a needed sense of urgency, I'm betting they'll meet their goal by February 23rd.

Hypebot Features Writer Clyde Smith maintains his freelance writing hub at Flux Research and music industry resources at Music Biz Blogs. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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  1. Lousy video. The general public doesn’t know what SXSW is. They come across like a bunch of mopes too cool to be asking for donations.
    And also what document and qual said above.
    And ALSO, if you’re gonna run a non-story, why not run one about a band using PledgeMusic, who is sponsoring your site? I don’t see any Kickstarter banner ads.

  2. I think it’s true, if you don’t know the band, the video is lacking. I was thinking in terms of people who would know who they are or have heard their music. After 10 years of music blogging I’ve seen pretty consistently that people who like a band, appreciate this kind of thing, if they don’t, they think it’s awful.
    But if the video is the first thing you see, which a band should assume, then it should start with something musical and interesting for strangers. That said, it seems like everybody’s guessing at what’s happening on such platforms and nobody really knows. They’re just making assumptions about why somebody donates and what they knew about the artist beforehand.
    Regarding writing about advertisers, I check out advertisers for topics that interest me and that I think will be useful to indie musicians, but I don’t pitch our editor based on advertising at Hypebot. For Kickstarter topics, I generally find them through other news outlets, as do many bloggers, and then amplify and bring whatever to it that I feel is appropriate. I’ve seen no coverage of Pledge Music campaigns but I have written about Indie Go Go campaigns.
    Also, nobody’s sending me promo material about their crowdfunding campaigns despite having covered at least 4 or 5 since I started writing at Hypebot. So that’s an example of an obvious opportunity that people are missing. Not that I can cover very many anyway.
    Newsworthy? Though there is a current events angle, as their is with anything I write, I did not write this as a news item so newsworthiness is kind of beside the point and I think at least one of those comments is spam anyway. But the Hypebot policy is to give people the benefit of the doubt no matter how minimal or confused their contribution.

  3. Clyde, I don’t work for PledgeMusic (nor are they advertising on a blog I write for) but you should look into what they’ve got going on over there.
    There is a charity element attached to all Pledgemusic campaigns. If this douchey Spanish Prisoners band said something at the end like, “by the way, 25% of what gets donated goes to help the homeless in Brooklyn”, I’d care a bit more.
    Also, PledgeMusic is global. Kickstarter projects have to have a U.S. bank account attached to it. Huge difference. You have international readers don’t you?
    Food for thought.

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