(Warning: LONG POST)
Thinking more about the Piano World music compilation project, this is what I think we can do for the first compilation:
- First and foremost, get a sense of how much music we will get submitted. It's hard to plan further without knowing how much music/submission we will have to deal with. SUGGESTED ACTION PLAN:
- Set a deadline (say, September 30, 2004) for people to declare their intention to submit a recording. It's not a set-in-stone commitment, but people should be fairly certain that they will follow-through on what they say they intend to submit before they make that declaration.
- A new thread will be setup for the above purpose - folks who want to submit will post on that designated thread stating the title of the piece and how long the recording is expected to last.
- THEN, set a second deadline for people to actually submit their material (more on this later).
[*]Frank is certainly the authority on what Piano World should be - but I get the sense that Piano World is more a community about regular folks who care about pianos and want to share their enthusiasm about the piano with each other, not exclusive to the elites who can buy the most expensive pianos or the geniuses who can give the best performances on the piano. So my first inclination is to shoot for an inclusive approach that will accommodate every one who manage to submit a recording in time.
Don't exclude people from the compilation on the get go. We can always have a vote for the "top 10" or something after the compilation discs are released. You can be creative about other voting categories too, just for fun, like "most creative submission," "most unorthodox interpretation of a classical piece," "weirdest sounding piano," - all for good fun.
[*]Even though I expressed confidence in Piano World members' abilities and willingness to fund the project, I think it's still prudent to keep the cost as low as possible. Given the all-inclusive suggestion made above, it is quite possible that the amount of material getting submitted will fill more than one Audio CD (e.g., one Chopin Op. 22 from Brendan will fill one quarter of an Audio CD, another Walstein sonata from some one else will fill up a third of an Audio CD). The cost of a multi-CD compilation would be high. So the following suggestions are made to keep cost low:
- <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Make MP3 CDs as the base line. It's a safe assumption that every Piano World member has access to a computer, so listening to MP3 recordings won't be a problem. And people can always burn their own Audio CD's from those MP3 files if they want to. (Yes, MP3 won't be as good as true Audio CD - but we're not talking about professional recordings here.)
- Instead of making a printed CD booklet, let's include a PDF file of the booklet in the CD, so folks can print their own CD booklet. (Piano World has the option to sell hard-copies of the booklets later for further fund-raising without first committing to printing all the booklets up front to go with the CDs - can even make super-deluxe leather bound version then!)
[*]About actually submitting a recording:
- <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Set a deadline (say, December 31, 2004) - people should submit all their material by this deadline.
- A submission MUST include:
- The recording itself (either a CD via mail, AIFF files, or MP3)
- A release form with the submitter's real name and signature stating that they allow Piano World to use the submitted material royalty-free for the sole purpose of making the music compilation. (I can provide a sample, but I suspect it'll be a simple thing for any lawyer here to draw one up that's fair to submitters and give Frank and Piano World sufficient legal protection.)
- The basic information about the recording: Name of composer and Title of the piece (or opus number as appropriate).
[*]A submission MAY OPTIONALLY include:
- <font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Any textual information the submitter wants to submit to accompany their recording - this will be included into the CD booklet. So, let's say, half a page maximum. It can be a "concert note" sort of thing, it can describe your recording setup, if can explain your original composition, etc. Whatever you want it to be.
- A picture. Can be a picture of the pianist and/or the piano, or just a picture that you figure would go nicely with the piece you recorded. Just make sure you're not submitting copyrighted material that you cannot legally let Piano World reproduce.
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[*]Mastering of the CD's - probably not an issue if we're going with MP3's. It will be nice to have some one going through every file and adjust volumes with ID3 tags in the files, but this is definitely much simpler than mastering an Audio CD. This person will also prepare the "master discs" that will be sent to the commercial CD press to make copies. If submission volume is small enough to fit an Audio CD - then we'll worry about Audio CD mastering.
[*]Making the CD booklet - basically a small Desktop Publishing job. Need one volunteer to put the submitted information (one submission per page) into some kind of fixed (or at least consistent) format and generate a PDF file out of it.
[*]Cover page art optional - something that can be easily handled by another volunteer.
[*]Cover page art may be submitted together with "master discs" for use as labels on CD's.
[*]Needless to say, we need a central coordinator to track all submissions and dispatch the proper pieces to the proper volunteers (e.g., the "booklet volunteer," the "CD mastering" volunteer, and deal with the commercial CD press).
[*]End product will be sold on Piano World, of course! ;)</ul><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">
Even though I use the word "volunteer" in many places above, I was going by the assumption that we want to minimize cost and that there are willing volunteers, but we can certainly subcontract the tasks to professionals if we demand professional quality work and are willing to fund it. (I certainly wouldn't mind volunteering/helping out with central coordination or even mastering the CD's, but I am not so confident with the other tasks outlined above.)