EEvery $ we can save on promotion is a $ we can spend on beer. We are true Belgians and we live up to our name. We are a band that works out simple ideas which we make up while having a few beers.
Let’s get down to business. I’m here for sharing a remarkable story about fate, coincidence and luck. We were looking for a new way to launch a single. Literally. I remember writing a song and thinking: “Wouldn’t it be great if I could see the music lift off?”
Now, we don’t like rockets or fireworks. Balloons filled with helium? That could do the trick. We buy USB keys and copy our new single onto a stick. We attach the keys to the balloons and hope that our music will fall from the sky.
We take some advice from the national weatherman. He talks about pressure zones and wind currents. We go ‘yeah yeah’ but we don’t understand a single word. Then we find out that helium is expensive (there is a shortage of helium worldwide, making it quite expensive). We decide to drink less beer in the evenings. On top of that we find out that as from 2030, all helium resources will have vanished from planet earth. We think of all the children that will never get to see helium balloons at their birthday. What a shame.
Launching the balloons makes us feel like we’re 16 again. Adrenaline! We watch the USB-keys as they disappear in the clouds. We hope they make a safe landing in our neighbourhood to surprise some people and who knows, maybe surprise some of our own friends! After a few days, we get emails from people saying they found a balloon. Even from music lovers in our neighbouring Holland! They send pictures of them showing the key. It’s fun. And then we get this email from… Scandinavia. We find it hard to believe and ask for evidence. Evidence is what we get.
The finder of the balloon in Denmark reminds us of the extra pdf file that we included on the USB stick: it’s the promise that we would visit the finder of the balloon who travels the farthest. 800 kilometers to meet someone we have never met? We keep our promise. And we want to meet the guy and hear his story.
A 10-hour drive leads to idyllic Soenderborg in Denmark. It’s the middle of nowhere. As we approach the house of the finder, we start getting nervous. We ring at the door and wait. What follows is surreal: both for him as for us. Luck, fate, coincidence has united us. We shake hands, I hand over a promo package and play an acoustic set. He tells me how he found the key on his way to school. It is an awkward situation, but it is REAL.
We drive home and we start making a video about our journey. We post it online. The video is shared massively right away. The next day, we find out Coldplay decided to put our promo video on their website. It’s amazing. I find myself playing national radio and TV shows. In the meantime, we make new fans across the world as people keep sharing. Tonight, we will be celebrating at our favourite pub while we will think of another cheap idea to make things work.
I'm Andrew Apanov, the founder of Dotted Music and We Spin. I invite you to fill out a We Spin questionnaire to receive a big bundle of audio, video and written materials for indie musicians that I and my team have created with much love and effort in the last three years:
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