Bon Iver and its frontman Justin Vernon have been crowdsourcing up a storm lately — Vernon enlisted fans to design a fancy new tattoo, and the band itself turned to music collaboration platform Indaba Music in August to launch a remix content. Now, it seems, the winning remixes have come to light, and they’re a lot less painful than Vernon’s tat will be (meaning, they’re pretty good).
A refresher: Last month, Bon Iver teamed up with Indaba Music and Spotify to enlist artists and fans to remix the band’s sophomore album, Bon Iver, Bon Iver. The band then chose one remixed version of each album track, and from that created Bon Iver, Bon Iver: Stems Project, an album that was exclusively released on Spotify (see below). Each winning artist also scored $1,000.
If you’re unfamiliar with Indaba, it’s a platform that allows musicians to connect online for the purposes of collaboration. The site also features a ton of contests — from songwriting to remixing — that allow up-and-coming musicians to work with more established acts, like Bon Iver. Famously, Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo used the site to find folks to produce demos that he had written with his wife. The producers were also paid for their work.
We chatted with one of the remix winners, Teen Daze, about the contest and his reasons for entering. Check out his responses below!
Are you a regular user of Indaba Music?
I’ve used it one others time before, but I don’t think I won the contest I entered. Remix contests in general are a great way to hone your remixing chops; I entered probably fifteen different contests when I first started doing it, back in the day…
Why did you decide to enter this content?
Bon Iver, Bon Iver is one of my favorite albums in recent years, and the idea of remixing one of the tracks immediately jumped out at me.
Are you a Bon Iver Fan?
HUGE fan! I listened to “For Emma, Forever Ago” when it first was streaming on some now-defunct music site, before he had signed to Jagajaguar. I was completely captivated by the idea behind the music, and of course the music itself, and my fandom has only increased since then. I think I fell asleep each night to their Myspace Session EP for a solid year or so.
Why did you choose that particular song?
The horns. I knew I wanted to work with stems that had a long, drone quality to them, like horns or a pedal steel, and the horns in this song are so soaring, and triumphant. I knew it had to be this one.
What will you do with your prize money?
I’m putting out a new album this November, and I’m starting to piece together the live show for it, so I’d like to take it and put it into that. Whether that means some new gear for actual performance, or something to contribute visually to the show, it will definitely go back into the music.
What do you hope to gain from winning this contest?
An afternoon spent on with Justin Vernon, on his front porch, sipping scotch, smoking a pipe, and discussing the simpler things in life.