Thursday, September 24, 2009

Where I Am At

So, I've received some questions pertaining to my deal...

So, I thought I'd let everyone know where I'm at. My explanation will contain some technical stuff, but it shouldn't be too hard to understand.

In May, after I left Brash (I asked out of my deal and they granted my request), I immediately started dealing with a major label (Christian major label tied in with a mainstream major label). Negotiations take more time than even I was prepared for. The reason why Idol contestant's signings are negotiated so quickly is that we negotiate for everyone before the season even starts...so once it's time to sign, there are no more negotiations. Brash was a small label, so our negotiations went extremely quickly (less than 2 weeks). So, I wasn't prepared that, when signing with a major, you are dealing with a behemoth that takes forever to do anything. It is seemingly impossible for a large label to do anything quickly because everything has to go through multiple and various channels.

So...

We have the deal negotiated. The thing that we finally hung up on was publishing. My publishing is with Brentwood-benson/Universal (BB/U). The way my deal works, on outside writes I split 50/50 with BB/U (a basic publishing deal). On songs I record, I get 75/25 (called a co-pub). The way the 75/25 works is that I own my writer's share (I can't give that up) and then own half of the publishing share on those songs I record. What the new label is asking for is the share of the publishing that I own, so basically, songs I record instead of being 50/50 would become 50 me/25 BB/U / 25 to the new label.

This is a lot to give up, especially for someone who writes all the songs on their own albums. But after discussing and thinking things through, it's an okay compromise to make: if the major label does what it should, I'll sell WAY more records than if I simply put out a record on my own. It's give and take...so we agreed to that compromise. We actually agreed to that compromise about 7 weeks ago.

The hang up right now is we are figuring out who will account for said monies. The new label doesn't feel like they should have to do it. BB/U doesn't feel like they should have to do it. So, we're stuck between 2 behemoths not budging and have been for way too long. Eventually, someone will budge and the deal will FINALLY be done. We're hoping it's within the next couple of weeks...but we've been hoping for that for a while.

So, the deal is completely done...with the exception of who is accounting for the 25% of songs I record on my album. It's funny the silly things that deals get stuck on. We worked through hundreds of detailed points in a few short weeks and get stuck on something this simple. It is funny, but frustrating. So...hopefully this will be done as soon as possible.

I just wrote the song that I feel like completes the album yesterday. So the songs are ready and rearing to go. So....we'll see when we can finally get in the studio. As far as I know, it'll be as soon as the tour is over...finally.

That's where I am at.

55 comments:

Nicholas R. said...

So great to hear some details about your deal Chris, I've been waiting anxiously for new about it!!!! Very smart to compromise less $ for more album sales. As still a relatively new artist to christian music, you need to build up radio support/ a fan base before you strike out on your own. That's another mistake Idols make post-idol, thinking they can make it on their own without any major lable assistance. All Idols taking the indie route after being dropped by their major label have seen their careers decline instead of advance.

And that's my 2 cents for the day, which will thankfully not make national headlines as your post did! Any press is good press to be certain. From what I've seen, it's about 50/50 people who agree with you and those who think you were being obnoxious. I'd say the 50% who thought you were being obnoxious probably wouldn't be interested in your genre of music in the first place.

Nicholas R. said...

woops I need to do a more careful job editing. That first sentance is supposed to say new information* about it. And I mispelled label. I distinctly remember someone saying in a comment on this blog that we need to be careful proofreading because typos make our posts seems stupid. Looks like I should have heeded that advice. Live and learn.

Zach B. said...

Alright so here's what you should do…boost your take to 55% for having to deal with their crap. Then the BB/U and label each get 20%, with the remaining 5% going to whoever mans up first and handles the accounting.

DJ in AL said...

Nicholas R. -we only say that to people who are being mean, LOL!

Chris, you know by now the devil is in the details. No need to say how happy I am for you, you know that already. Let us know when we can pop the cork on the champagne!

Sending you nothing but love!

DJ in AL said...

Chris- I'll handle the Accounting!

Just a suggestion................

gdahimself said...

Why doesn't BB/Universal do it? After all they would have if "The Label" wasn't get a piece of your share.

robyn said...

sounds like a good idea to me, Zach!

risalea said...

That seems weird to me. You'd think one or the other would be anxious to do the accounting to make sure they get their fair share. I guess they want their % without having to pay the accountants! So, is there any reason why one side can't do the accounting with the other side auditing their results? Or maybe you should hire DJ. I'm telling ya', she's a taskmaster when it comes to money. She'd look after your interests, fo' sho'!

Patience is virtue...maybe the Lord is giving you a patience lesson. Hopefully, this will all be resolved soon! Tell Mitch to get in there whip somebody! LOL

Cathy Storms said...

Thanks for the update Chris.

I can't wait for the new album.

Any plans for a Christmas album?

And as what DJ says, maybe the blogger girls should be your accounting department. After today I might be looking for a new job. lol...

EmilyBoo said...

Obviously I have no idea how all this works, but I like Zach's idea. Or DJ's. ;)

gdahimself said...

Cathy,

until the deal is resolved and signed, projecting a release date for anything is impossible, or at best, optimistic

rosalee said...

I'm glad progress is being made. I wonder if this stumbling block has been encountered before with other artists. You'd think that past experience of both the major label and publisher would dictate a ready-made solution for the accounting problem.

Chris, could you elaborate on your phrase, "if the major label does what it should"? Does this involve my favorite word, PROMOTION? What are their obligations to you in this regard?

risalea said...

I agree, Rosalee. This isn't their first rodeo! And good question about promotion, as well. I'd like some more info on what we, your frands, can do. Frands-new word, combination of fan/friend...I have a feeling when I say friend it comes out more like frand, anyway. LOL

Cathy Storms said...

GDA~Yeah I know...But one can hope that it will be sooner than later...

gdahimself said...

Rosalee,

"if the major label does what it should"

I hope this includes actually getting product in stores. The only time a saw one was "Take A Chance..." in a shop in Keyport where the cliente was more likely to buy something by Black Sabbath/Ozzy Osbourne, Megadeth or Hendrix

Leah said...

I must say that I found it difficult to find a copy of your current album. I stopped at quite a few stores before I was able to locate one. None of the large retailers in my area had a copy of it. Those retailers would be places like, Target, Wal-Mart & FYE. I was able to locate one at a small christian bookstore. That said, I do hope that your next album will be more readily available.

Is it typical for a new contemporary christian artist to sell their music only in christian book stores? I ask because all of the stores I mentioned had a christain music section and I was confused why yours was not there among the others.

I was able to get the Half Past Forever CD from Amazon. Got it today actually, and I really like it. It seems more mainstream then your new one. Why the switch in music Chris? I know I am probably asking a lot of questions most of the other folks here probably already know but I am very curious about it all. If you or someone else could bring me up to speed, so to speak, that would be awesome.

ChrisSligh said...

Leah,

I'm assuming from the way you're speaking that you're not really a religious person. Either way, I'll explain it as best I can...

I started off doing Christian music. In fact the very hard to find first Half Past Forever album was a Christian record. Then my band made the decision to go mainstream and play clubs and such, so the HPF album that you bought off of Amazon was the result of that. high-energy, mainstream rock/pop.

With the Take A Chance album, I signed to a label that was going to do half and half mainstream/christian promotion (they didn't follow through, only focusing on Christian)...so, we made a half and half record. Half the record was straight up Christian and the other half could work on mainstream. I also went way more pop on the Take a Chance album b/c that's what I felt like would work for what I was doing.

The next record will be with a major label so it will definitely receive more promotion.

Thanks for coming by....

Chris

HstryQT said...

Also, regarding the stores where TACOSB is available, I seem to recall that he had some sort of exclusive thing with Family Christian Bookstores, or something, and the larger chains received less. But don't believe anything I say because when I first started reading this blog I had pregnant-brain and now I just have the more generalized mommy-brain. I could be way off.

Either way, I'm glad to hear that things are moving along. And I'm sure that the loooooong wait will pay off in the end when you get TONS more promotion for this album - and it will be deserving of such!

Also, was saddened to see no Sligh presence on the WOW 2010 album. Ya'll know I'm always harping on that. One day... one day. :) I still think Empty Me was robbed though. It deserved a spot, dag nabbit!

Nicholas said...

I purchased a copy of Chris's Running Back To You at Target. It was really funny actually, because I was wearing a tux when I bought it.

DJ in AL said...

Leah! You came back! And you bought Chris Sligh CDs! You have restored my faith in Anons everywhere and continue to win over the hearts of the 2%. BTW, we use that 2% very tongue-in-cheekish, just so you know. For a while we called ourselves the "core" group, and that caused quite the controversy though I've forgotten why.

Anyway welcome back!

risalea said...

Lori, where ya' been?

Leah, welcome...glad you made it to the next blog post. Let me ask you this, do you eat Rotel? (a subject that occasionally makes it's way into the conversation. Lol)

And I've got to start editing my posts better. Jeez, I left two words out of my last one!

The men have gone to the deer woods to put out their corn, and do maintenance on the deer stands. So enjoying a peaceful evening with Chris and Kris. : ) BTW for you tweeters out there, help trend #LiveLikeWereDying.

Leah said...

Thank you Chris for the clarification.

I do go to church but not very regularly. I am not into Christian music. For some reason, what I have heard in the past seemed very repetitive. There were a lot of lyrics about blood and grace. It seems the music focuses a great deal on death.

I happen to be a huge Beatles fan. I own every single one of their albums. Abbey Road & the Revolver album are my two favorites. To me, their music is timeless.

I listened to the Half Past Forever album all the way through and saw that some of the songs from it made their way to your new one. I guess those were the songs that could go main stream. I also listened to the new CD, Running Back to You again. I like the songs Loaded Gun and In a Moment. The Loaded Gun song had a Beatles feel to it with all those strings that you had going. You did a very nice job Chris.
Do you ever listen to the Beatles?

So will your new album be Christian with some songs that could go main stream?

I was very impressed with all that goes on to finalize a record deal. I never realized there was so much involved in the record business. I don't know how you keep it all straight. Just reading all those percentages gave me a headache. I think I will stick to solving people problems.

DJ-- Thank you for the warm welcome. Yes, I decided to read this post because it seemed very interesting. Chris seems very knowledgeable about how the whole record industry works. That is why I thought his advice to all the other idols was so relevant.

I kind of figured that the 2% thing was very tongue & cheek. It seems that Chris's fans have his same great sense of humor.

Risalea -- I have never heard of Rotel? What are they?

I am off to visit a couple of antique shops for the day with some girlfriends. ( a very bad habit of mine) I hope all you have a great weekend.

rosalee said...

Leah -

If you want a more detailed explanation to your question of "why the switch in music", read Chris's blog entry from Aug.23, 2007 (The Choice):

http://frommymindtoyoureyes.blogspot.com/2007/08/choice.html

I, too, am a big Beatles fan, as is Chris. I hear that the new, remastered CDs make you feel like you are right in the studio with them.

Rotel is a brand of spicy tomatoes that come in a can. It's often used as an ingredient in cheese dip. I'll let Risa explain more about the Rotel. I see that I and GDA are not the only ones who didn't know what it was (LOL). Are you from the Northeast?

risalea said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
risalea said...

What is Rotel?

Leah, meet Rosalee.
Rosalee, meet Leah. Lol!

Long story short, two years ago we got to talking about coming together for a fan gathering with everyone bringing their own regional dishes. Rotel is as Rosalee described, and is popular in the South for cheese dip and every kind of Mexican casserole ever taken to a church potluck. Rosalee and GDA didn't have it in their part of the country. I credit it for helping make our initial Chris Sligh picnic get off the ground. We even gave it as a party favor the first year.

http://s211.photobucket.com/albums/bb163/risalea/Fro%20Patro%20Picnic%20Experience/?action=view&current=DSC_0121.jpg

You can read more about it and other info about our picnics at www.fropatropicnic.webs.com

And if your love of antique shops extends to flea markets and roadside hidden gems, you and DJ must talk. She has an antique booth with a friend of hers and loves to go out on Saturdays to find treasures.

As Rosalee says, she loves the Beatles and Chris considers them a huge musical influence. So girl, if you're looking for kindred souls, you've come to the right place!

Cathy Storms said...

Leah~so glad you came back to the blog.

Rotel~It's yummy and if you can find it in your part of the world, you must give it a try. It's also very popular here in California. It's a staple in our house for Nacho's and I put it in a really good receipe that Risa gave me. Carmen has a really funny story involving Rotel.

I am also a huge Beatle fan. Chris is a really big fan and does cover songs by them in his past concerts. It melts people's faces off..

So welcome and really hope you stay around. Maybe even next year you can join us for our 3rd annual Fro Patro Picnic. The last 2 were held in Nashville and they are really a lot of fun. I'm still pushing to get the next one in California....lol....I think I live the furthest away from Nashville, but I have to admit, I really look forward to going every year. Nashville is really awesome!!

risalea said...

Nicholas R.-I meant to ask you, pray tell, why were you wearing a tux when you bought Chris's CD? Inquiring minds want to know!

DJ in AL said...

Leah, OMG you like Antiques too? Girl, it may be fate that brought you here or divine intervention whichever you are inclined to believe. As Risa says I spend most of my Saturdays sifting through yard sales, estates sales, junk shops and antique places, in fact Carmen does this as well. I was forced to open a booth in an Antique Mall with my best friend so our husbands would get off our backs about how much "junk" we were dragging home every week! Personally I prefer the word treasures.

Rotel did indeed play a huge factor in our decision to start meeting once a year. It is always alot of fun and next year should be no exception. Nashville is a great city to visit, lots to see and do.

Like you, church is not something I attend as I should:( I'm not particularly proud of that fact but nevertheless it is true. And to be perfectly honest the only Christian music I owned prior to HPF was a Mercy Me CD. Though Chris' music has alot of Godly messages they can just as easily be considered mainstream. A topic that has been covered.

Anyway, hope you stick around and drop in. We adore new posters, I mean we talk to each other every day, we get sick of each other after a while! JK

Nicholas, as ususal Risa beat me to the Tux in Target question, do tell!

Ok my Fro Friends, I am building an Ark as it is yet again pouring rain in AL! I mean, how much rain can we possibly need? We are promised nicer weather beginning tomorrow. On the other hand the rain isn't keeping me from another of my loves and that is College football. Risa your team has my permission to stomp AL all they want! LOL! War Eagle!

Hope everyone is having a great weekend!

Sending you love from a drowning DJ in AL!

risalea said...

Go Hogs...ROLL over Bama!

(We'll see what DJ is saying in two weeks when her beloved Tigers are up against the Razorbacks in Fayetteville!)

gdahimself said...

Leah,

1) Ro*tel Home page
http://www.ro-tel.com/index.jsp

New Jersey made Taylor Ham*/Taylor Pork Roll never caused quite the same fervor:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pork_roll

2) Chris is presently enamored with the album "The Beatles" aka The White Album. He often includes "Eleanor Rigby" on his mainstream playlist and has been seen wearing an array of Tee shirts that feature photos of their album covers, i.e. Abbey Road, Let It Be.

* Northern New Jerseyans call Taylor Pork Roll, Taylor Ham, actual Taylor Ham hasn't been offerred for sale in years.

Nicholas R. said...

Hahah I figured people wouldn't let me get away with just writing "I went to Target in a tux".

I was on my way to my high school's junior prom about 30 minutes south of where I live, unfortunately dateless, and I needed something to cheer me up. I figured, hey why not buy Chris Sligh's inspirational CD since there's a Target right off the highway. Customer service at Target is rarely any good, but the fact I was wearing a tux seemed to have caught the attention of the music manager guy, who promply located a copy of RBTY in the pop/rock section.

So I was rocking out to chris the rest of the way there, and on the way back as well. I'd go into detail about why I was dateless, but that would take a couple long paragraphs to fully explain haha. If anyone here wants to know, I'd be willing to write about it, because quite frankly, not having a date to prom(both years, senior and junior) is one of my biggest regrets about my high school experience.

risalea said...

Ah, Nicholas...I promise, I know the prom thing is a big deal now, but you've got so much more living out there ahead of you to do. It will be all right.

Cathy Storms said...

Nicholas R~Thanks for the update on why you were wearing a tux in Target. I was also wondering.
Of course we would love to hear your story. Believe me, we have all told some stories on this blog that no one else would ever believe.
Welcome to the blog...I'm really glad your here..

DJ~Please send some of that rain my way. It has been so hot and dry here for so long..I'm so ready to break out the sweatshirts and sweaters..I have family in Oregon where it used to rain all the time. The story I always told them was that people in Oregon don't tan, they rust..I guess it's the same for people down your way.

Nicholas R. said...

"It will be alright", is definately true, I'm not any lesser of a person because I didn't go to the prom with someone. That isn't what bothers me so much as I missed out on one of those one time experiences life has to offer.

Certainly in the grand Christian spectrum, going to prom with someone is about as un-important as it gets. So I completely understand what you're saying in that regard. However I'm still at the age where I'm trying to figure out what I stand for and what I believe in. I'm a science major and frequently have to come to grips with logic vs. faith. Chris's new song "I can't believe" connects so much with me. On one hand I can't believe all the wonders of the human race just occured by coincidence(the E word), but on the other, there's no scientific basis for the existence of heaven. I'm sure you all have compelling reasons why I should believe, but believing is'nt something you can convince someone to do, it needs to occur naturally.

risalea said...

Nicholas, not minimizing at all your feelings about not having this experience, just letting you know from someone who's on the other side (ahem, WAY on the other side LOL) who also didn't go to prom, that you have so much to look forward to. Everything is relative, and at this point in your life it takes on more importance than it will down the line. Trust me on this one.

You're right, you must come to faith on your own. Hebrews 11:1 says, "Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." I don't know how people without faith or belief make it through the hard times. For myself, it has carried me through dark days and I cannot imagine being without it or without Him. I pray that you find your faith as you study His word. It doesn't have to be a choice between science or faith. I believe the natural world is a testament to His mighty power.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

gdahimself said...

A theologian once observed that true belief is a gift from God.

Cathy Storms said...

GDA~Well said...

Anonymous said...

Chris Why Don't You RELEASE THE HARD TO FIND HALF PAST FOREVER ALBUM AGAIN? you know people would buy it

"so the HPF album that you bought off of Amazon was the result of that. high-energy, mainstream rock/pop.

With the Take A Chance album, I signed to a label that was going to do half and half mainstream/christian promotion (they didn't follow through, only focusing on Christian)...so, we made a half and half record. Half the record was straight up Christian and the other half could work on mainstream. I also went way more pop on the Take a Chance album b/c that's what I felt like would work for what I was doing."


the half past forever album on amazon is take a chance on something beautiful right?

gdahimself said...

Take A Chance On Something Beautiful has been available on Amazon but is Temporarily out of their stock, but available thru other sellers (8 new from $5.11 is a link to the other sellers).

HstryQT said...

Hey Risa,

The shift from summer to fall (or, er, September) was a bit epic since I now have a serious job (selling the Famous Be'ans :) and I'm back in grad school and I'm chasing around a toddler. It's a crazy but fun life!

I had responded back in the drama-blog-post. Can't believe all that I missed! I think I'm up to speed now though :).

Really so glad to see so many new "faces" hanging around here - it's great!

HstryQT said...

Wow but apparently Cathy & DJ aren't too happy with my teasing! (I include appropriate emoticons :) in my posts for a reason!)

Sorry ladies. Guess I'm officially not in the inner circle anymore. Didn't mean to offend.

Badpacifist said...

I just caught a little bit of american Idol rewind as I was changing channels. I thought i saw Gina Glockson. Could they be doing the season with that curly headed guy?

DJ in AL said...

Lori, pulleeaaseee.....no apology necessary, no offense taken. Joking right back, you've been gone too long if you can't recognize that:):):):):):):):):):)

Too happy, too beautiful a day for drama!

Cathy Storms said...

Lori~No apologies needed here either. We were joking also...
No worries..your still in the inner circle. Or the 2percent as we're called now.

risalea said...

Randy, I thought I read somewhere they were doing season 5 this time around...but will check it out!

risalea said...

Oh, and for you ladies, had the opportunity to hear Priscilla Shirer from Dallas speak tonight. All I can say is Awe. Some.

Bully said...

Hey Chris-- I bet it's nice hearing people discover your earlier musical efforts! Personally, I am always anxious for the fruits of your growth, you know? Can't wait to see where you're at now. :-)

Leah-- I know what you mean about the christian music stuff, but there is actually alot of it that is uplifting and even just meant to be enjoyed. I was surprised to find so much available, in so many cool genres. Chris got me into DC Talk, and then TobyMac took over from there! There's variety to find. (Check out Cutting Edge Video, if you have satellite tv.!)

While it's maybe a bit over my head, I think it's fascinating to hear about the details of the record deal. Thanks for sharing, Chris.

risalea said...

From Twitter: Chris and Andrew singing "Compassion" on the tour.

http://www.twitvid.com/94BA2

EmilyBoo said...

Risa, that link is to a different song, isn't it? Here is Compassion, and it's beautiful!!

http://www.twitvid.com/19EA1

rosalee said...

Risa -
That song is called "Here". It's up in its entirety on Chris-Sligh.info.

risalea said...

Sorry, didn't have time to listen when I put it up...was going by Andrew's dad's tweet!

Badpacifist said...

I saw Michael Johns and Brooke White last night vids are at my

youtube.com badpacifist

Jason said...

I bought one copy of running back to you from Walmart soon after it was released...it was on the top section of the Christian section at the local walmart here...i gave that one away and bought another copy from the website...

Nique's Nana said...

Chris, thanks for the update. A lot of information, but it is interesting information seeing how the inter stuff works.

Anonymous said...

Personally I would never, ever abdicate the acctg role to someone outside of your organization.