Finance

OCCUPY THIS ALBUM FINANCE UPDATE – 03/25/2014

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 10/13/13 – First statement from Razor And Tie reflecting breaking a negative balance –  $563.44                 SEE STATEMENT HERE

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 11/31/13 – First payment we should have received from Razor And Tie to Music For Occupy for the release of Occupy This Album – $837.48 SEE STATEMENT HERE  – have not received payment as of update

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 12/31/13 –  Second Payment from Razor And Tie to Music For Occupy for the release of Occupy This Album – $444.47  SEE STATEMENT HERE Received Payment

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 01/31/14 – Second payment from Razor And Tie, including a release of return reserves to Music For Occupy for the release of Occupy This Album – $5,747.84 SEE STATEMENT HERE – Received payment

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 02/28/14 – SEE STATEMENT HERE

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 03/31/14 – SEE STATEMENT HERE

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 04/30/14 –SEE STATEMENT HERE

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 05/31/14 – SEE STATEMENT HERE

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 06/30/14 –SEE STATEMENT HERE

EARNINGS STATEMENT – 07/31/14 – SEE STATEMENT HERE

 

This year (2014) we have received approximately $8,000 in funds from sales of Occupy This Album, some of which has been used for further promotion of Occupy This Album, as well as numerous actions to support the Occupy movement.  Over the past couple of years our funds have been spent on:

– Created 2 benefit concerts to support Occupy Sandy efforts – which helped many Hurricane Sandy victims and produced mini film documenting our process – see here

– Brought Perry Farrell of Jane’s Addiciton, along with his family to the Rockaways to visit and give assistance to Occupy Sandy efforts

– Produced numerous concerts and poetry slams to promote Occupy awareness, at The Bowery Electric, Arlenes Grocery, City Winery, Stephens Talkhouse, and more.

– Assisted with accomodations while Pussy Riot came to NYC to visit with Occupy Protestors in summer of 2014

– Co- Produced a music festival to raise awareness about Pete Seeger, protest music/movement music, and social justice at Lincoln Center, Central Park’s Summer Stage, and many other locations – see here

– Planning a $2,500 donation in 2014 to the next Rolling Jubilee effort  – an effort started by OWS to eliminate debt – see here 

  • How exactly are profits from this album calculated?
We believe that a lot of people have misconceptions about how these things work, and how the money is earned, and in this case, where it will go.   The record industry is complicated and not easy to understand so we will break it down for you like this:
Here is the reality – and please feel free to pass this on.
Music For Occupy has a distribution deal with Razor & Tie (who are distributed by Sony/RED) to distribute this album.  R&T has advanced (paid directly to vendors – not to Music for Occupy) approximately $50k in upfront costs, from artwork, to manufacturing, to press, to marketing/promo. These are basic costs for setting up a record.  To date, Music For Occupy has received no direct income for this project.
Music For Occupy will need to recoup the amount R&T and Sony/RED have advanced for setting up the record before they ever see a dime of income.
How is it recouped?
Based on a $9.99 price, the distributor will receive a cost of around $7.73 per album.   If we sell 5000 units – which is what we expect our first week sales to be, that generates a gross of $38,650.  Subtract the distribution fee, and you are looking at a total of around $31k.  And this doesn’t account for the fact that 50% of those sales were discounted at 10% (standard music industry discounts first week of sales).  So – this means, that Music For Occupy will still be un-recouped approx $20k at 5,000 sold units.
Say another 5000 units sell (10,000 units total) . . . Well – then  there will be approx $11k of earnings . . .so what happens with that money?
R&T will receive $$ from Sony/RED three months after the album is released (release date is May 15 – which means R&T gets paid from Sony/RED around Aug. 15).  Music For Occupy won’t receive income from that statement until 3 months later, around November 2012 . . .
What happens with that money?  As it stands now, Music For Occupy is registered as a 501c3 under the Group Exemption Umbrella through the Alliance for Global Justice, which is the same group that oversees the funding for Occupy Wall Street and several other Occupy organizations.
Once the first statement is received by Music for Occupy with funds from R&T, we will be in communication with them to ensure the funds are spread to the Occupy Groups, after any promotions and marketing expenses that Music For Occupy had, which thus far have been very minimal, will be recouped as it has been publicized that it will.
The CD right now, more than anything, is a vehicle for promotion and awareness about the movement.  I think people’s false sense of financial success from the CD is clouding it’s original purpose.  People think selling CDs makes money in the industry . . .it’s not that simple or easy.
I’m hopeful this is helpful to those who have questions.  We will be ,reviewing the financial distribution, and posting records of the same, once that is an issue. Right now, it’s about getting people in the mainstream to talk about the movement again. . and hopefully this album will assist that. . ..
  • What are the costs for production and administration of this project and are there any other entities or items being paid for out of the revenues of this album including before dispersal to the Occupy Movement? Were there any advances that must be reimbursed before any profits will be disbursed, and if so, to whom were these funds allocated and for what were they used?

 

We think most of this has been answered in the last answer above, but if that is not clear we will attempt to clear it up further here. The Music For Occupy costs of production of “Occupy This Album” have been very minimal.  Only minimal travel expenses totaling maybe a couple of thousand dollars at most. We do expect to incur further marketing expenses, such as promoting the album at different music festivals by having booths at these fests, and staffing these events.  We also have laid out funds that were given to street teams that helped promote the album at a few different events.
In addition there will be some legal fees that will need to be paid to Music For Occupy’s counsel, yet that # is still unknown as there is still some work to do.
We do intend to do further promotion of Occupy This Album, such as develop concerts, increase our street teams, and book tours which would require hiring individuals, and significant funding coming into our organization to do so.   We are hoping you can donate today!The only entities other than MFO that are being paid out of the revenues of this album before distribution of funds to the Occupy movement is expenses that Razor & Tie has paid in connection with the album, which has been detailed above.  In addition the distribution fee must be taken from our profit, we are not at liberty to disclose Razor & Tie’s distribution fee.
  • By what method and when will funds be delivered to Occupy? What entities will be responsible for the dispersal of funds?

 

We are currently in the process of exploring the best methods for disbursement with many well known, and respected individuals within the movement.  As many things do within the movement, making sure we are doing the right thing for Occupy with the funding takes time, deliberation, and certainly consensus among many individuals, which is exactly what we have been working on building for many months.Originally we had publicly stated that half of the funding would go to the NYCGA General Fund, and the other half would be dispersed throughout the country.  Since then our ideas have taken different shape and grown considerably in the past 8 months.  Considering that the NYCGA General Fund was frozen, and the NYCGA at this point has become unpredictable, and almost non existent in nature being that it is currently frozen, we have had to explore alternatives to ensure that funding would get to the right places.  We have done this exploration by speaking with many occupiers and trying to figure out where best the funding would be best put to use, so the following is under very serious consideration:If any funding comes from the sales of this album we are strongly considering giving 50% of it towards an Occupy Media Center that is being worked on by many people within the movement proposed to be in Brooklyn NY.  The media center will be fully equipped with a cafe, copying machines, printers, radio broadcasting center, a television studio, as well as a recording studio.The other 50% will be given away in grants to multiple occupations around the country to those who apply for these grants.  There will be a board of individuals from within the Occupy movement which will include people from Occupy The Hood, Occupy.Com, Occupy Media, Yippy Cafe, as well as The OWS MWG, and numerous others.  We will develop a plan in order to take these grant applications in, properly vet them, and grant approved projects together as a board through consensus based decisions.  As you see that we will not receive any actual funds for some time we still have a great deal of time to work these details out and let the public know about them.
  • Please delineate the income and allocation of funds, income, publicity, or promotion from any other related activities using the Occupy name associated with the album, including but not limited to the listening party at the Gibson showroom, the $99.99 per person album launch party at City Winery, the “Occupy This Wine” bottles at the release party.

 

Private donors paid for the listening party at the Gibson showroom.
The price of the $99.99 tickets for the “Occupy This Album” record release party included a bottle of “Occupy This Wine” as well as a copy of “Occupy This Album” a total of a $55.00 value.  Please note that there were also tickets for the event available at a price of $54.99 without the bottle or album.  We were hoping to raise additional funding from this event for Music For Occupy to pay for further marketing of the album, but unfortunately saw no profit, and instead a loss associated with the party.  Details below:
32 tickets sold all together – with 440 people in attendance
VIP seats – 3@$99.99           =     $299.97
Reserved Best: 12@ $99.99 =     $1,199.88
Standing Room 16@$54.99 =     $879.84
Discounted: 1          @$25.00 =    $  25.00
TOTAL GROSS –              $2404.69
Expenses  – Wine          –  $ 675.00
                   –  Producton – $1,649.85
                                 Tips  – $   200.00
________________________
            Total Loss             – $120.16

VERY IMPORTANT INFORMATION – Please note that we gave away 408 tickets to this event.  We spent time at a wonderful Occupy action in Central Park, as well as numerous days down at union sqaure and asked folks that were Occupying to go on our mailing list for updated information and a chance to win free tickets.  We contacted EVEY SINGLE PERSON who signed our mailing list to give them free tickets.  Unfortnately we got about 30 returned email address, which would have put us much closer to capacity, but not everyone has perfect handwriting.

The tickets were at a price of $99.99 because we wanted to give away as many tickets as possible for free to our firends in Occupy Wall Street and still be able to pay our expenses. The only way you can give away the most tickets, is by charging a bunch for some of them.  ALSO not one bottle of “Occupy This Wine” was sold away from the ticket packages.

We know that the prices of tickets, as well as the “Occupy This Wine” bottle offended many within the movement.  While we feel badly that we would offend the same movement we work to preserve we could not find another way to offer the most free tickets possible.

  • I thought Music For Occupy was a corp, and not a non-profit.  What happened?

 

Music For Occupy (MFO) began it’s journey as a corporation.  Desperately wanting to shed the INC, MFO went on a journey to search for a way to become a non profit in a timely manner.  MFO explored numerous opportunities for fiscal sponsorship, and eventually after months of deliberations decide that the Alliance For Global Justice (AFGJ) was the best fit for our mission. Music For Occupy is fiscally sponsored by the Alliance For Global Justice in Washington D.C. This change occurred on April 17th, 2012.

 

  • Have any artists, or producers been paid for producing “Occupy This Album”?

 

NO!  The folks who produced “Occupy This Album” did not get paid a penny for any of their work while producing it.  All artists have agreed to gratis licensing to MFO, which means any and all royalties that would typically come in to an artist, publisher, or anyone else will be donated to our organization.

 

  • What does the future hold for Music For Occupy?

 

As a non-profit record label, we intend to produce other albums in the future that will spread the idea of truth in music and further the culture built by the Occupy Movement, which we like to call “Movement Music” the music that moves you. We also intend to employ people who believe in our mission, and folks who have a history of supporting the Occupy movement in such positions as Label Managers, Audio Engineers,  Marketing pro’s, and administrative positions.  This can only be accomplished if we are able to raise further capital above and beyond what comes in from the sales of “Occupy This Album”.  We are working very hard at doing so in these difficult times, and if you would like to help please feel free  to donate here http://musicforoccupy.org/donate/

If you have any further questions please never hesitate to ask.  We welcome ALL feedback, we actually encourage it!  Let us know your thoughts, your ideas help us decide our next move.  musicforoccupy@gmail.com.

  • “Who EXACTLY is Music For Occupy?”

Music For Occupy is an organization founded and directed by Jason Samel, who also is the Executive Producer of “Occupy This Album”. Samel has built up a vast network of “Friends of Music For Occupy”, in the entertainment industry as well as the friends he has found to be indispensable to the organization made within the Movement.

Samel first visited Liberty Square/Zucotti Park NYC on 09/19/2012, and the next day he formed an idea which would quickly evolve into the Music For Occupy we are today.  Since, he has relied on the expertise of his network of extremely talented and dedicated individuals to navigate his way through this industry he previously had zero knowledge of.

Music For Occupy’s Mission Statement Can Be Found HERE .