Russell Mofsky isn't asking much out of you. Just $15,000.
Even if you're not a local music freak, you might know Mofsky's act, Gold Dust Lounge. For folks into the art scene, it's the trio that has performed outside the Harold Golen Gallery in Miami on countless occasions. Fans of the tiki subculture, who spend their evenings at Fort Lauderdale's Mai Kai and pencil in the annual Hukilau celebration on their calendar months in advance, will recognize Mofsky's music in the forthcoming documentary on the resurgence of the tiki culture entitled Plastic Paradise, out this spring.
But for all of the recognition, Gold Dust Lounge's reverb-washed, warm blend of surf-rock, spy-movie soundtracks, and punk-rock sensibilities hasn't reached the masses with a well-promoted, hard-copy album. And that's where your fifteen Gs come in. Not just you, of course. Mofsky has started a Kickstarter campaign, which debuted Sept. 1, and the $15,000 is his goal.
"It is [a lot of money], and it isn't," Mofsky says. "It is in the sense that it's ambitious and the biggest part of that is to promote it. We're doing records, CDs, and the publicity. I've been told to budget $3,000 a month for three months just for publicity."
Although this is his first Kickstarter, Mofsky has done his research and can talk at length about all the strategies involved. "If you make 20 percent of your goal, your chances go up," Mofsky says. "There's a certain amount of snowball action. But 20 percent seems like a critical amount to get to. When you get there, it seems more viable."
The Kickstarter went live on midnight of Sept. 1. Just 10 hours later, it had 28 backers for a total of $2,891, almost exactly 20 percent of the $15,000 total, with 29 days to go.
Suddenly, $15,000 seems like a legitimate goal, not a wad that would require an angel investor.
"I'm feeling pretty optimistic about it, though I've never done a Kickstarter," Mofsky says. "Initially, I thought I would go for $7,000 to $10,000, but I don't think we can accomplish what we want to with that money."
With the $15,000, Mofsky plans to promote the album as well as print CDs and LPs. The actual creation of the album, Lost Sunset, has more or less been completed, but for the mastering. "It's grown in concept. We wanted to add some players after the fact, and we knew I was gonna do some solo pieces," Mofsky says. "We did six songs, and a couple weeks after that, I did some solo recordings, and then after that we added Juan Turros from Suenalo.