Pernikoff Brothers Talk "On My Way" and Tunespeak
Tue, 05 Jul 2011 06:43:37
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Pernikoff Brothers have crafted a deep and diverse collection of intelligent indie rock with their debut album, On My Way. It nods to The Beatles and Dave Matthews Band at all the right moments, but there's a personal passion fueling the music that's distinctly theirs. Gorgeous melodies rise and fall like waves with intricate instrumental passages expanding the sound into classic territory. On My Way is just what indie rock needed…
However, Pernikoff Brothers' genius extends past the music. The group have created their very own social media and marketing service called Tunespeak where fans will get paid by the Brothers when they get their friends to purchase On My Way. That's about as far outside of the box as it gets, and it's bound to spark a revolution.
Pernikoff Brothers' singer and guitarist Tom Pernikoff spoke to ARTISTdirect.com editor and Dolor author Rick Florino in this exclusive interview about how Tunespeak works, the stories at the heart of On My Way, and so much more.
What was the genesis of Tunespeak?
My brother Rick and I have been musicians since we were little, and we've always written songs together. We both went to college to study other things, but we've always studied music. We ended up working startup-style day jobs in Silicon Valley for a few years, and we learned a lot about tech and product, while always doing music. We actually officially started the Pernikoff Brothers project while in the Bay Area. We were playing around San Francisco as a duo. At that point, we decided that we had enough songs and we wanted to do music full-time. We had this idea that we could use what we had learned in Silicon Valley to do something out-of-the-box. It's a compromise between giving away music for free and selling it at full price. That's how the idea came up. Once we recorded the album, we started working on it. We were working on the live show too and rehearsing every day. The hours we weren't rehearsing we were working on Tunespeak.
How does Tunespeak work?
The concept is an incentivized peer-to-peer online marketing and distribution service for bands. We're the sole band, and we want to see what happens. It's an experiment of sorts. The idea is you tell people about the album and you promote it. Every time three of your friends—whether they're on Facebook or Twitter—buy it, you get the credit back and you get one-third of the profit. For every three albums you sell, you basically get the price of one album back to you. We've set it up so it can be as easy as a PayPal transaction or we can actually send you a check in the mail. The long-term idea is to giveaway more invaluables like meet-n-greets, backstage passes, merchandise, signed stuff, and other things. As we progress as a band, those are the things we'd like to offer. When we add other bands, we'd like to give away similar items. Tunespeak is a standalone service, but every time you post on Twitter or Facebook taking an action, we track it on Tunespeak. If you buy it on Tunespeak to start, you only have to get two more friends to buy it. Then, you basically get the album for free. Later on, we think it'd be really cool to give other options like t-shirts or concert tickets instead of just the money.
Is the service unlimited for promoters?
Yes! As music consumers, it's appealing to us and that's why we created it. There's so much talk about giving away music for free. I know, as a music consumer, if there's a full album that I love not a single, I'll pay ten bucks multiple times for that album. If I couldn't listen to it again, I'd pay $100 for Dark Side of the Moon right now. This is a service for artists who want to create full albums. We believe in the art of the album. It's also a service for the super fan, the people who really appreciate and love those full albums. Promoters can donate right back to the band or the organization MusiCares too. We want it to be good for the music industry. We want to spread the word and get our music out there.
What's next for Tunespeak?
We want to see what happens when we go on tour and we're playing different cities every night. It's not meant to be a substitute for a music group out there who's trying to make it, it's meant to be a supplement. We're a band first and foremost. Everything we do starts with the music. This is just a tool for us and super fans to spread the word. It never was meant to take over the real hard work of becoming a professional musician or touring artist. We help bands that are on their way get to the next level.
Did you have one cohesive vision for On My Way from the beginning or did it come together song by song in the studio?
I would say there was more of a vision from the beginning. My brother and I lived in California, and we've always written songs together. This project started out there as a duo. It wasn't until we had most of the songs written that we said, "Hey, we're going to do this." We did the album in Nashville, and we wanted to record a full album. We weren't trying to make a single. I don't even think of any of our songs as a single. We had the songs and the idea of the album, and we wanted it to be a full record because that's what we love. The album is about going new places and trying new things. There's a lot of love lost and that kind of thing.
What's the story behind "The Beach"?
It was a big song from the beginning, and we really wanted to convey that on the album hence the horns and production. That was about the beginning of our journey, and that's why we put it at the top of the album.
Is storytelling important for you?
We love music that has stories in it. This album is so real for my brother and me. The stories are real. These songs came together over years and experiences. It was pleasure to put them on one album and fit them together. It does tell a story for us. Hopefully, it tells a story for the listener too.
Will you be purchasing On My Way via Tunespeak and referring your friendS?
Check out Tunespeak here!
For more on Tunespeak, click here!