Michael W. Dean is the former lead singer of the 90s band Bomb, an author of instructional books, podcaster and is probably most well known for his documentary DIY or Die about independent artists. I watched DIY or Die a year or two ago and had made a note to get Michael on the radioshow, and then promptly forgot. Then this weekend I read this excellent commentary that he wrote for O’Reilly Digital Media, Anarchy, Integrity and the Digital Marketplace:
What I’m saying is this: I believe in a free-flowing global exchange of information. I believe free flow is important to continue advancements in art, science, and commerce. And I believe in Fair Use. But I also am not a communist, and I enjoy getting paid for something I work very hard on. I think the artist (or content creator, if you like) will do well to learn what all the various options are, all the different levels of copyright, copyleft, free, and pay, and adjust accordingly on a project-by-project basis.
Don’t believe the pundits, intellectuals, or dumpster-diving squatters who tell you that any one way is the right way or the wrong way. Don’t let anyone guilt you into doing anything you don’t want to do with your art. Your art is your baby. Respect it, love it, cherish it, but don’t devalue it just because “everyone’s doing it.”
Art belongs to the ages, but it primarily belongs to the artist. To you. You are free to do with your art as you please. And that’s true anarchy.
So i shot off an email to him and almost immediately received a positive response and we recorded an interview Monday night.
Be sure to tune in to this week’s radioshow to hear this very interesting interview with someone who is making a go of it as a multi-media independent artist. You can listen live Friday at 5:30 PM Central Time on WEFT’s live stream, or wait for the archive which will be posted by midnight Sunday.
And a quick note on the tech behind this particular interview. Michael suggested we do it “double-ended” where he recorded his voice in his podcast studio and I recorded my voice in my studio. We did the interview over Skype, which I also recorded so I would have a good sync reference. Michael uploaded a high-quality mp3 of his vocal track and I’m mixing it together with mine. Then it will sound like we were in the same room together.
That’s actually how a lot of public radio interviews are conducted, like on Fresh Air. All those celebrity guests don’t travel to Philadelphia to be in-studio with Terry Gross. Instead they go to some studio or station nearby where they record the celebrity’s voice as s/he speaks with Terry on the phone. Then the Fresh Air producers mix it all together.