Norm Bowler wants to record new artist music absolutely free. So he created the Grumpy Old Bear Artist’s Collective, began listening to local unsigned bands, approached those he thought had talent, and offered to record them free.
But there are a few catches. He only records singles, then releases them to iTunes and Emusic. So you won’t get a fancy 4 color album cover and a CD to show off. But then again, you won’t have thousands of dollars in start up costs to pay off either. If/when people start buying your music, Norm does all the sales processing paperwork! The only thing you do is give a portion of the money to Norm for doing all the work up front and doing a lot of your promotions for you. It really is the lazy musician’s dream come true: free recording, free marketing, and if you’re lucky, occasional royalty checks.
Is Norm Bowler crazy? What does HE get out of all of this besides a lot of work with maybe a few bucks in royalties? Well, partly the satisfaction that he’s helping other talent get a helping hand…something that he wishes was there for him when he was a young songwriter looking for a break. Now that Norm is a successful tech guy, and most of his kids are grown and out of the house, he was looking for a way to give back. And since he’s always loved music and had a passion for helping other people, it seemed like a good fit to start a record company. It also gave him the excuse to buy a lot of really cool recording gear and hang out with creative people.
Norm is a hero because he’s stepping out to help others using his unique talents and abilities….and having a lot of fun in the process.