Brad Sucks

Brad Turcotte aka Brad Sucks is one the the most famous indiependent pop-rocker worldwide. His debut single "Brad Sucks One" was 2001 released on his website bradsucks.net. That time brad proofed an intuition for upcoming trends - he released all single tracks of the song the same time - three years before ccmixter.org used this idea as a base concept for their project. For Brad Sucks this paied of pretty fast to give away his work in such an open manner. As a pionier of the Open Music-Scene he was mentioned in the RedHat-magacine and it was up to him to design the audio-samples for the widespread multi protocoll instant messenger Pidgin. One os his tracks will be available in the Rock Band Network. Previews are published at YouTube. Of course it was up to his fans to vote for the tracks.
On his website he lists 561 remixes and 128 videos made by his fans.
So it's high time, to ask the brave man two or three questions. :)

Musik suggestion: Brad Sucks - Thanks for the Add (demo)

Christian: Hi Brad, can you give us a short introduction of yourself?

Brad: I'm Brad, I make music and do stuff with computers. I have a music project called Brad Sucks.

Christian: At which age did you start to make music? And which instruments do you play?

Brad: I started classical guitar when I was nine or so and wrote some tiny little things. But it wasn't until I was 12 or 13 that I got rolling with the computer. I play electric, acoustic, bass guitars, and enough keyboard to get by.

Christian: You are one of the most remixed artists at ccmixter even you haven't uploaded new tracks for a pretty long time. What do you think why artists like to remix your work so much?

Brad: I don't know. One of my theories is that my songs are pretty brain-dead simple so they're easy to cram into whatever.

Christian: Have you heard all remixes of your work at ccmixter? Which one is your favourite - if any?

Brad: I haven't heard all the remixes - honestly it's hard to listen to my vocals over and over again after a while. I'm probably the worst audience for them since I'm sick of the songs and tired of hearing my own voice. I like the ones that drastically alter the song though, so I can feel like I'm a part of something cool.

Christian: At the moment you are composing a new album "Guess Who's a Mess". This time you let your fans remix the tracks even while creating the album. Do you get influenced by those remixes?

Brad: So far I've only listened to a few of the remixes - I'm sort of saving them for when I go back and re-consider the songs. I'm hoping to be influenced, but there's a possibility I'm too stubborn.

Christian: What made you to leave the more classical rock style of your last albums and move more to the pop genre?

Brad: Just trying to mix things up a bit, try something a bit different. Really in my last couple albums I sort of dabbled in a lot of different styles. Electronic stuff was there, rock stuff was there, so I liked the idea of maybe trying to go a bit deeper.

Christian: Is there any reason, why your remix cd "Mixter Two: I Don't Know What I'm Doing" is only available at magnatune?

Brad: Magnatune set that up and handled all the paperwork so it's up on there.

Christian: Second "is there any reason"-Question: You have not added any "This music is under creative commons"-notes, neither to the downloadable archive nor to the mp3-Tags in each file. Did you just miss the chance?

Brad: I think there might be CC notices on the individual album pages. Is there a reason to add it to the mp3 tags?

Christian: Well, I think so. If a copy a track and give it to a friend, he probably does not know, that it's a cc track. If this information would be in the tags, he could easily find it. But usually I do tell people that the music I offer them is cc stuff. You might also add it at the zip files.

Brad: Interesting, I guess in my world nobody really cares too much about whether they're allowed to do something with digital content.

Christian: Mh. If you believe so, why did you choose CC for your music?

Brad: Joining Magnatune was the first time I licensed anything under CC, that was a prerequisite to joining. After that I put my stuff on ccMixter and it needed to be done there. I've just finally gotten around to putting badges on some things.

Christian: "please steal this cd" - this phrase in the download section suggests, that you mean to loose something if people share your music. Or is this just an ironic punch to the music industry that blames those who share music as pirates?

Brad: Yeah, it's just a statement to say if it's stealing, I would like to encourage you to do it.

Christian: Uh, that's weird. But well, that's what we know you for. :) Think I don't tell you something new if I say, that there are artists that feel ripped of, if somebody copies there music and does not return them some money immedeatly.

Brad: In the beginning I had some anxiety over whether I would be sabotaging myself in the future. But that immediately did not seem to be the case.

Christian: But you did decide for cc anyway.

Brad: Well, in the beginning I just said "do whatever with it". Gradually it was helpful to clarify it to certain people. Though the majority of music consumers don't really care, I think.

Christian: You were one of the first artists using creative commons licences and got a pretty big reputation since that time. Was it enough to rely only on selling music and doing show to live from?

Brad: It is now, though I'd be doing better if I actually played shows.

Christian: Why did you decide to join Rob Costlow's Reconstruction Music Project?

Brad: He emailed me and asked if I'd put my music up there and I said sure.

Christian: Do you two know in real life?

Brad: Just over the internet. I think he emailed me way back when he showed up on Magnatune and we said hi. He seems like a go-getter and that's pretty awesome.

Christian: Despite of just doing music you are running the websites stripcreator.com and in4mandor.com. Why did you start those projects?

Brad: Stripcreator was back when I had an interest in writing a comic strip, so I made a generator. Then I opened it up to everyone. Then I lost interest in making my own comic strips, but the site's been running for nearly a decade. In4mador had some lofty goals many years ago but now it's just a general link site with some funny people that use it.

Christian: Is there any chance to see you in germany playing?

Brad: If the right opportunity comes along, I'd love to. But it's expensive to get over there and I'm not really looking to spend tons of time on the road to inch my way over.

Christian: Brad, thank you very much for answering my questions!

Video suggestions (YouTube): You're Not Going Anywhere
Making me nervous
Bad Attraction

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