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Alternative sources of funding for electronic music performe
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Agnes



Joined: May 29, 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 06, 2005 9:54 pm    Post subject: Alternative sources of funding for electronic music performe Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

One of the subliminal issues at the conference this past weekend, June 3-5, 2005, was how does one finance one’s interest in electronic music. Asking a few questions informed me that most people interested in electronic music creation/performance finance their love of technomusic from their own pockets, citing daytime jobs as the number one method. Performers said that even though they had paying gigs, and sold CDs, mostly it did not cover expenses.

As one who has studied non-profit management and worked in the non-profit field for many years, I would like to suggest that people seek funding from grants from charitable foundations, many of which support the arts. Grants can be obtained by individuals, groups, and/or organizations and can be for equipment, composition, performances, events, and/or other things. Even our friends from outside the USA can be eligible in many cases.

I will be happy to answer questions you have.

Another point of information I have, (though strictly speaking this is not funding), is that there are many “artists retreats” where one goes to live for a period of time. Some are free and housing and meals are provided, and the “community” of other artists usually is an exciting and supportive environment encouraging your creativity. Usually one can fully participate in the social aspect including group meals, or you can ferret yourself away in your corner and create in seclusion.
For a list of retreats and more information you can go to http://dir.yahoo.com/arts/organizations/Artists__Retreats_and_Colonies/

Very Happy
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2005 9:27 pm    Post subject: Re: Alternative sources of funding for electronic music perf Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

abwajdyk wrote:
As one who has studied non-profit management and worked in the non-profit field for many years, I would like to suggest that people seek funding from grants from charitable foundations, many of which support the arts.
<snip>
Another point of information I have, (though strictly speaking this is not funding), is that there are many “artists retreats” where one goes to live for a period of time.
Both Greg and I have attended the Different Skies "festival" which is mostly an electronic musicians retreat. A few of us broached this topic of funding by grants. Except for one, none of us have any experience with writing grants, not to mention finding grants in the first place. (That's why 501(c)3 non-profits hire developmwnt directors.) How do we start? We could also apply this knowledge to electro-music, especially since bandwidth and a server are needed for streaming, something Howard really would like to do for the electro-music community.

Cheers,

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Agnes



Joined: May 29, 2005
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Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2005 11:12 pm    Post subject: part 1 on grant searching and writing Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Finding grants and applying for them are different for individuals* and 501 (c) (3) registered organizations. (*I define here, individual to mean any individual or group of artists that is interested in finding grants and that is not registered as a 501 (c) (3) organization.)

I will attempt to answer both questions, but before I begin to address separate issues, I’d like to mention a few shared commonalities. The search for grants begins by either getting a hold of a book of registered foundations in a particular area or by doing a search on the Internet. Just type in “Pennsylvania (or whatever state you wish) Foundations” and you will get the beginning of your search. I think all larger libraries and most of the university libraries have some of the foundation books. The one for Pennsylvania is called “Directory of Pennsylvania Foundations”, edited by S. Damon Kletzien, the current edition is #7, printed by, Triadvocates Press, 103 Oak Lane, Suite 101, West Chester, PA 19382-5434, Phone: 610-544-6927, E-Mail: PaFoundations@aol.com. The 7th Edition is priced at $85.00 plus $3.50 S/H; also add 6% PA Sales Tax, if applicable. You can see it on the web at http://pafoundations.net/7thEditionInfo.php.

There are some non-profit organizations that have this information available to you for free, do a Google search.

Don’t limit your search to your home state, many foundations do not require state residency. Even non residents of the USA are eligible for some of the grants. However, many foundations will deal only with 501 (c) (3)s and not individuals and that is where Electro-Music can play a pivotal role. I’ll say more about that later.

After doing some research, pick out ten foundations that sound like they might support your project. Do not pick out the ten best. Save them for when you have gotten a little experience under your belt. Write the ten a letter or give them a call and ask them if your project would come under their auspices. Most importantly keep the letter to one page (I know how hard that can be) and make sure you request in the letter the names of any other foundations or organizations that might be amenable to funding your project. If you are going to call, write everything down on two sides of a 3x5 card and half memorize it. Practice saying it out loud so you don’t stumble when saying it. Develop a strong opening sentence that has all the basics in it.

Make sure you have a definite project in mind and describe it very briefly, but concisely. Do not just ask for funds for some vague idea. And make sure that someone who has a good command of the English language proofs your letter.

Somewhere, some foundation is going to say that your project is not quite what they would like to fund, but if you make such and such changes, they might be interested. At that point you will have to make a decision; follow their lead or keep looking.

Follow-up on any leads these ten foundations give you and you will soon be a practiced and successful grant seeker.

At this point individuals looking for funding and 501 (c) (3)s begin to diverge. However, as Electro-Music is not a 501 (c) (3) it can proceed as an individual or, it can explore the benefits (and downsides) of becoming a 501 (c) (3). I can discuss some of this with you if you wish. One thing Electro-Music can do as either a 501 (c) (3) or an individual is some of the grunt work and make this information available to your members. As a 501 (c) (3) your members can come to you and say “I have a great idea, I need some money” and you can apply for your member to many of the foundations that deal ONLY with 501 (c) (3)s, apply for the grant and if it is awarded, administer it. This is where it is most easily done to make grant money available to anyone in the electronic music community no matter what state or country they live in. If Electro-Music is administering grants, they get the chance to broaden the pool of fundees.

Is this enough information for the moment?

Last edited by Agnes on Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:10 am; edited 2 times in total
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:
So.. this means that even though I am located in the Socialist Republic of The Kingdom of Norway, I can apply for US money for my projects? I better hurry before George Bush figures out we do have oil here. Laughing


Indeed, or muslims!

Seriously, a much, much better idea is to arange some international performances, then explain to the Norse emabsy in that country that you are desirering to represent Norse culture in their country but that the project is looking to make a loss which may prevent it from pulling through.

Well, that´s what it comes down to, of cource you don´t litterally write that.

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Agnes



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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:04 am    Post subject: part 2 on grant searching and writing Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

In reading over my last entry, I realize that I have not made clear three major points.

1. When you write the first letter to the foundations, you are NOT APPLYING for a grant – yet. You are only seeing information – will this foundation consider funding you and what organizations do they know of that might.

2. Most foundations will not give grants to any individual, only to 501 (c) (3) organizations, and the 501 (c) (3) organizations give the grants to individuals. However this is not a hard and fast rule, so always begin your search for funds at the source, foundations. If a foundation does not fund directly to individuals, but is interested in your proposal, they will steer you to an organization they have funded for that purpose.

If you know of organizations that fund electronic music projects, you can go straight to them, but they are harder to find if you do not already which they are. I also believe that any organization that gives grants for musical endeavors of the more “traditional” nature, may be open to your proposals even though they have not funded in this area before.

3. After you get some leads on where to apply, you have to begin the actual application process, a process that usually has specific dates for applying and always has rules or guidelines on how to apply. Most successful grant seekers have learned how to follow these rules exactly. Don’t forget, foundations and organizations receive many more applications than yours, and if yours is difficult for them to process, they may simply decline it based on that difficulty. The good news is that if they are really interested in your proposal, they will usually tell you how to rewrite your application to meet their standards.

There are two schools of thought in the non-profit world of foundations. One wants your application to perfectly conform to their guidelines, feeling that if you can’t do that, you will also be unable to successfully use their money. The other camp, feels that they are then excluding a large portion of the population who have not had the opportunity to get a good education, but who may be very talented, and a responsible and successful member of their community. No matter which school of though prevails in a foundation, presenting yourself in the best possible light is to your benefit. A scatter brain is a scatter brain, no matter their educational or financial level, and sorry, the head in the clouds artist image is not helpful in applying for funding. Vincent Van Gogh probably would not have been a successful grant applicant.

Last edited by Agnes on Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:07 am; edited 1 time in total
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Kassen
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

deknow wrote:
i dunno...the "frame of referance" is clear to me (as everyone's profile shows where they say they live next to their post), so i don't know how you could be confused (or offended). of course if the tone or intent was to exclude people from outside the u.s., then there would be no mention of "our friends from outside the u.s." being eligible.

deknow


I disagree, the post seems to talk about sources in general and electronic musicians in general. The only point where it becomes clear that only U.S. charities and grands are being discussed is in the "even our friends...." phrase which clearly implies that the a) author beleives that they have a smaller chance of receiving one and also that b)she was asuming they themselves might think they had none at all which in turn would imply that the author is simply not considdering non-U.S. sources of money.

Confusing here is that what is being written is directed at the U.S. situation which is only made clear in a very roundabout way by refering to people from outside in the U.S.A.. Condesending here IMHO is the note that implies it´s remarkable that non-U.S. people could aply for grants. We are left to figure out for ourselves that this only refers to U.S. grants, then wonder why we would need those instead of simply aplying to the local government or charities.

Of cource the meaning of the word "here" or "foreign" is made clear most of the time by the location set in the profile but when the subject could be either universal or local and no reference place is made then it does get confusing. Here the scope of the discussion only becomes clear by the end of the second paragraph and the topic´s title starts the unsuspecting reader off with the idea that a universal discussion will follow. Of cource much of that post indeed *is* universal, what gets to me is that the writer is implying it isn´t and instead is centralised around the U.S..

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I don´t think Kassen really meant to be negative. It was more like some kind of OT departure on the term foreign. That said, I have observered that many members are trying to be funny when they enter their "location" in the member profile. This means that the members profiles very often aren´t really "helpful". Some of the entries are hilarious, but this also means that using the location data as a resource isn´t possible.

Anyways, I think should leave there "here, there and nowheere" for now, and look into what abwajdyk posted. Abwajdyk is trying to be helpful.
This is however not his own opinions on the matter, but rather an explanation of how this works. This can hardly be argued. What we need is sensible info and abwajdyk is providing that.

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Kassen
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:
I don´t think Kassen really meant to be negative.


Indeed, I believe I stressed that a number of times already. Sadly we live in a time where being critical inherently means "being negative" (whatever that means) which in turn is inherently bad.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

THX! THis is a lot of great info and i am sure we would love more.. but please don´t make any new posts before the timewarp problem is solved. The timewarp is seriously messing up both the communication and the database.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Right.. problem is solved. Keep on posting.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 9:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

abwajdyk, thanks for your very helpful information. I would like to chat with you at length about this topic. I will send you a PM. Maybe we can get together on the phone or meet for lunch or something.

There are many positives and negatives about the grant chasing business. Things are also different in each country. I appreciate that you are knowledgeable about this and also interested in electro-music.com. I'm sure something positive will come from this. Thanks for your interest.

At the moment I'm too swamped with things to even carefully read all of this information. Crying or Very sad

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Kassen
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Yes, indeed, Mosc.

The thing I hinted at in the EU is especially interesting, I think, for musicians. As I understand it you can get money for projects that cover a few countries, of cource this is in the name of uniting cultures and so on. I think that for many adventurous musicians it could be the thing to make a D.I.Y. style tour run a small profit instead of being a thing you do for the adventure and swallow a little loss.

I´m just not sure what would happen for U.S. or -say- Australian artists, perhaps they could aply for it too, but I´d guess not since that wouldn´t realy fit with this "European unity" concept. Embasies are interesting for this though...

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

thanks for the many infos on this mysterious subject.
I am going to delete this post of yours:

Posted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 5:38 pm Post subject: Reposting as original seems to have disappeared.

the original posts are back on Very Happy

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2005 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

seraph wrote:

the original posts are back on Very Happy


Sometimes it's better to be lucky than good... Laughing

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Agnes



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 7:03 pm    Post subject: Clarification of statements by abwajdyk Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Clarification of statements by abwajdyk.

First of all I would like to clarify the fact that I did assume that the majority of people at electro-music were from the USA. If this is not so, I apologize.

I know very well every country in the world has charitable organizations and “alternative” forms of funding.

What I did assume and still do assume, is that most people who live outside the US are unaware that some US grant money is available to them. In so assuming, I believe and still believe that I was “sharing” my knowledge with them and trying to let them know that my information on alternative funding did not exclude "our friends outside the US".

I have no experience in non-profit charitable work, or finding sources of grant money, or writing grant applications in any country other than the USA, and as such, I would not attempt to give advice or opinions to anyone applying to a country other than the USA. If the information I share is applicable, I’m happy, but it is accidental.

Lastly, I have checked my original text and I do not find anywhere that I used the word “foreign”. I am well aware that people object to the word and avoid using it.

I hope this clarification and explanation ends this side discussion which does nothing to promote friendship and is detrimental to the main issue of helping electronic musicians, and all those related to the field, to fund their creativity.

Last edited by Agnes on Fri Jun 10, 2005 7:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 7:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Well said...

Sometimes written statements on the forum or on email lists are misunderstood or misinterpreted. Inappropriate reactions come with the territory. It's best that no one take things personally or react hotly. We all want the same things.

I think the more we collectively know about grants in all of the countries where we are based the better.

Abwajdyk, thanks for your help and your involvement. You attended electro-music 2005 as a member of the audience. Now you are becoming a member of our community. I think that's fabulous.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2005 10:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Something I would like to mention with regards to grants. Check your local libraries. Not only do they have a wealth of information, quite a few of them (in the US - I would think elsewhere too) are recipients of grant money for funding performances, discussions, craft shows, etc. promoting the arts. In effect you would be getting the grant money indirectly.

How much do they pay? That is hard to say but I do know that our local library system will pay an artist up to $400 for a 1 1/2 hr performance*. It's not a huge amount of money - but it doesn't hurt and exposes your work to a larger audience.


*disclaimer - different performers earn different amounts of money..
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

Brother, Can You Spare $500: A Guide to Individual Fundraising for Composers

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2005 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

"Brother, Can You Spare $500: A Guide to Individual Fundraising for Composers?"

Amusing photo but just a little too close to the truth to not hurt. Goes for all the creative arts.
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