With the 00’s coming to an end on December 31, we can look back at this decade as the one that changed it all. From the 9/11 attacks to the crumbling economy, the 00’s turned our world upside down and shook to the core age old institutions, leaving most of them to scramble and try to find a way to adapt to the age of Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. One of the victims of this new era was the music industry, which is still struggling to adapt its business models to the digital world.
“The industry is completely shaken up and it’s shrinking,” said Pete Chema, 24, bassist of the band Ten Feet Deep, “And really no one knows once the dust settles what’s going to happen.”
Ten Feet Deep is a perfect example of the band of the new millennium. The band, which consists of Alexander Craig, 24, Mike Leff, 25, Brendan Ryan, 24, and Chema, is building and promoting itself through social network websites such as Facebook and video sharing websites like YouTube.
“We did a music video on YouTube for one of our songs called “Hands Down.” The reaction was so good,” said Craig, “That was basically what opened our eyes to how much promoting had to do with being a band. You put it on YouTube and you tell a thousand people to go look at it, and they go look at it and then they listen to it and they go “Wow, this is pretty good,” and then they come to your show.”
The four bandmates are in charge of all their business themselves, including bookings and promotions. In fact, they have formed a partnership called Rubber Soldier Music LLC.
“We’re trying to make the most of this transformative era in music and try to do it on our own,” said Chema. “It’s a learning process, but we’re really excited to be doing this from the ground up.”
The guys all went to high school together in Bedford, NY, and they started playing together about ten years ago. They all learned how to play instruments after receiving them for Christmas or birthdays, and they started getting together for fun. The name of the band comes from their first concert, which they played in an empty swimming pool for their friends and family in the spring of 2000.
“One of our friends had a pool, and it was empty, and it was ten feet deep,” said Craig.
Ten Feet Deep’s upcoming self-titled CD will be available in hard copy on Jan. 10, and it will hit the iTunes store somewhere at the end of that month. Do visit their website to find out more about that album and their yet-to-be-planned release party, which will include a free show in Manhattan.
Check out the slideshow below to see the band performing at a benefit on Dec. 7 and to hear more from Craig and Chema.