Crazy title for a post, huh? Well, the time has come, after many years of remaining silent on the subject of my recordings, to address an issue that continues to come to the forefront quite often. This will be a very brief post, but I’ve been asked about my recordings several times this week alone. Rather than continue smiling sweetly and acting blissfully ignorant, I want to speak truth. At 32 years old (GASP–I don’t believe in hiding my age), it’s been many years since I cut ties to the recording industry and the life I once knew. What hasn’t changed, however, are the facts.
No matter how many years go by, music does not go away. My love for music has not gone away. Songs–all songs–are forever etched into the fabric of culture and the hearts they touch. Music is the universal language that speaks to the soul and no matter how old, it is always new and exciting to the person hearing a song or artist for the first time. So, whether you stumble across this blog and have never heard my name, or if you once came to shows and requested my songs on the radio, I’m grateful for you. So, so, so grateful.
Where am I going with this post? Well, believe it or not, many people write or tell me that they have recently purchased my songs. I’m always shocked they even managed to find them after so long, and then I begin to wonder where the royalties are going. Certainly not to any account in my name. For years I’ve let that thought drift in and out knowing there’s not much I can do to physically tackle the subject. I don’t want to let bitterness creep into my heart and at the end of the day, the love of money is a root that can lead to some rotten fruit. So, I briefly ponder and then I move on. But, since this is a subject I’ll likely tackle as long as my music exists (the rest of my days), I’m asking you in the most interesting/only way possible, please don’t buy my music. You read that correctly. Don’t buy my music.
I am SO grateful that so many people continue to show such love by investing in and listening to my recordings. Music is my gift from God and the notes play a melody in my soul that knows no end. After many years, I’m finally at a place where I’m ready to begin opening up more about my past in the industry, the things I experienced and how that impacts the very different world I live in today. When it comes to my recordings, however, the reality is, I would much rather gift you the songs (if I could afford that option) or have you pay me directly. When someone writes or tells me they love(d) my music or recently discovered some cut from long ago, it touches my heart on a visceral level. What most people don’t know is I’ve never received one cent from those recordings. While I’ll never know how much money was/is made from the songs, what I do know is people are still supporting my music and it’s not supporting my family. Someone out there is not even noticing the $1 here and $10 there. But to my family, that money would completely alter our lives.
While men from New York to Nashville are driving their fancy cars, eating out at fine establishments and hopping about around town, my family is diligently working to pay off student loan debt, live on a cash only budget and teach our children the value of a hard-earned dollar. It’s a very different world and I happen to be caught between the two. Only the reality is, one of the two probably doesn’t remember me, but they know my name because the checks come in…but the checks, however small to the labels, would be huge for us. And, more than that, they are rightfully, legally, mine. Gabbie Nolen. That’s my name. Don’t buy my music…unless you buy it from me:).
I know this is probably a very silly post to most of you and not my typical subject of choice, but it’s my strange reality. I’m caught between two very different worlds and the only thing they have in common is my name. If you’d like to support my music and enjoy the songs, I’d love to send you a signed copy or make them available for download on this site. Since this is a topic that comes up, I’m going to make an intentional effort to add a shopping cart or paypal system to this site so you can order directly from me. And guess what? Your $1 will be GREATLY appreciated, noticed and put to solid use. Regardless, I thank you for your continued encouragement, prayers and kind emails reminding me that once upon a time I made music that mattered to you. That is a beautiful treasure to my soul.
For the Love of Music,