distribution of NMJ albums

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Dear IOL/Nigel, I have never come across any of your albums in any record shop, high or low, at any time over the last 16 years or so since I first came across your music. Is this the result of a deliberate policy? I am concerned that your music is not being made available to the wider audience that it undoubtably deserves. Are the terms of independent label distributors too onerous or compromising? Perhaps it is not really comparing like with like (apart from the festival-frequenting background), but even Ozric Tentacles seem to have some arrangement for distributing their sounds to the masses, as a lot of their albums are readily purchasable in any old record store. I would be interested to hear your thoughts on this.

Best wishes, Jim

-- Jim Green (jgreen@westclifflodge.u-net.com), April 11, 2000


Hi Jim, fair points. In the seventies I had a publishing deal. The dark days of any rip off they could pull off. I was advised to get out of it by a famous person who's solicitor pointed out I had signed my life away for nothing in return for twelve years. I was heavily involved through the seventies with anti nuclear protest and as I became aware of the corporate rip off of the human race at all levels I released my own first album because I did not want to be part of that system of corporate rip off. I was not in the trendy London scene so never met the few people who helped other well known names to reach a wider audience with their small labels. The outcome of independance is that unless you have a team of friends to handle the 'product' to market, advertise, push, hussle, plug to radio etc you stood little chance of gaining a wide audience. I have been busy on the road gigging and living so I had little time at home and rarely gave the albums much publicity. When I approached distributors and they had stock they never paid up. They all take stock on sale or return. I got fed up of the system decades ago as I have been pursuing an expressive agenda most of my life and it is an old cliche that artists make lousy administrators. At least I am intact and have never been more creative than the last few years, so compared to some of my fellow musicians I am lucky. I put some of this down to having listened to and followed my intuition. Big record companies treat you as only product and to hell with what your ideals are. No-one has ever been able to gently pursuade me for financial reasons to compromise a lyric, a stance, a perception, a statement or a performance to suit their financial agenda. I have not played the 'game' and relative obscurity is the penalty. You mention Ozrics, well they are a band in a different genre of music and I suppose if my 'sound' was in that genre I would have maybe reached a wider audience, but acoustic views of the world dont command a wide audience generally. I have recorded much that is not acoustic and the records always represented a chance to experiment with other genres, but live I have mostly been solo and the solo format is not a populist one. I am in love with the subtlty of acoustic sounds and my roots started with it. I deal with allsorts of musical textures now and the next cd, 'Planet' brings every type of sound into play. This is a long story of some idealogy and some accidents of fortune but at the end of the day as long as I can listen to what I have played/sung and know it is real and from a deeper place than the wallet, I can live with myself. Anything else would be a waste of time. Songs write themselves out of the ether of accidental coincidences. Some would disagree. They are welcome. Its just the expressions of one human after all but at least I can say its an honest expression. One more thing, I fell in love with animals, wild life and nature at an early age and moved to Cornwall in the seventies. Its true that if you want to reach a wide audience you shouldnt live in Cornwall. So...no mega fame but I do watch the sunrise and sunsets now and then in wild winter, I see the human race as I dive in and out of the cities as I have always done, I get to meet and end up knowing well lots of inspiring people, and I get to see how life really is around the streets here and abroad. If you aint living it you cant write about it. Im happy to have been supported by life to make it this far and still be creating and even more so as time passes. Life seems to sustain me and I am greatful. This is not true for many in this music game. Music is more powerful than many acknowledge. I am happy to have my chance to add alittle to it. Much of lifes potential is as yet unseen. Much like a piece of heart felt music. Hope that helps. Thanks for the dialogue. See the news letter on the website for news of why I am behind with life plans at the moment. Getting there. Be happy. Nigel Lets see if the website, the next albums and the re-release of Ship will help widen the sales/audience. Voice Print are a very good company of idealists and they are helping get the live cd around a bit. Perhaps they will help again with Planet. Who knows what lies...Behind The Stone...Definition...that which is hidden from human view. Be Happy, Nigel

-- Nigel Mazlyn Jones (iol@cerbernet.co.uk), August 02, 2000.

Dear Nigel, thanks for your very full and illuminating response to my question. I fully support your ethical stance and desire for artistic fredom.Also, thanks for the definition of 'Behind the Stone' - I was wondering what it was all about! Best wishes, Jim

-- Jim Green (jgreen@westclifflodge.u-net.com), August 03, 2000.

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