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Drip Audio: "A very, very, very sad time"

img  Tobias

You've mentioned that the decision will force you to cut back your offerings – how much so?
The Canada Council Specialty Music Grant has funded 75% of the recordings that DRIP AUDIO has released in the last two years. The grant has payed for most of our releases including the recording & manufacturing. With these cut backs DRIP AUDIO will be forced to cut back its release offerings by about 75%. As we all know there is not a lot of money in the creative music world and unfortunately the label has very small funds to actually pay for the creation of recordings. We will still do a few here and there, but we will not be able to document Canada's creative music scene like we have anymore.

Are you hearing similar problems from other labels and artists out there?
Yes there are very similar problems for many other labels in Canada because this grant was annulled. Most labels releasing creative music, which includes improvised, noise, new music, jazz, art-rock, electronic, etc., have released albums funded by this grant and will now suffer from a lack of support. Some of these labels include Ambiances Magnétiques, Songlines Recordings, Barnyard Records & Alien 8.   Many labels will now have to cut back their offerings tremendously. Some will survive, but ultimately many will have to seize operation

The case against cutting back financial support for labels like yours is, of course, not just that "noncommercial“ music needs to be subsidised. But that there are forms of art and ideas out there which need some time to develop before they can become not just artistically valuable but commercially viable as well. Can you shortly outline how the recording program has allowed you to grow and spread the inspiringly different message of Drip Audio over the past years?
This recording program has made it feasible for musicians such as myself to make recordings without feeling confined to sell, sell, sell. This grant enables you to concentrate on the creation rather than have the pressure to constantly control and guide your vision into something that will be accepted commercially. It helps musicians to keep searching for new sounds and to ultimately create new genres. It makes being an artistic musician a reality... There is no way DRIP AUDIO would have the history it does (23 releases) without support from this recording program.

There is a petition which has already raked in almost 6.000 signatures. Is there an action plan besides collecting the support of like-minded artists?
A musician named Nilan Perera started the petition. There has been huge backlash to this and in fact, many of Canada's newspapers including The Globe & Mail, The Montreal Gazette, Ottawa Citizen and The Vancouver Sun have all done extensive coverage of this situation. There was also a demonstration in front of the CBC headquarters in Toronto where many musicians and supporters dressed up in black clothes and brought down their favourite recordings funded by the grant to mourn publicly. The very CONSERVATIVE government we have in Canada has held back their annual funding from the CBC, Canada's national public radio and television broadcaster. The conservative government is very eager to fund commercial music and entertainment. They basically want to turn Canada into a soulless nation devoid of art & culture. It is a very, very, very sad time.

Picture by Jessica Eaton

Homepage: Drip Audio
Homepage: Online Petition against cutting Canada Council's recording program

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