Look what you did 😳

Thank you for being a lighthouse in the midst of crashing waves and unrest. The tides roll in, the tides roll out, and there you are.

Look what you did 😳

This past week I've been taking stock.

I guess that's bound to happen at tax time.

But more than money, I've been counting gains and losses in this weird journey I'm calling a music career.

Life in music is a real roller coaster ride and without grounding it can turn your stomach.

I've been feeling a little queasy.

Last month I put out a song that reached 10,000 Spotify streams in 3 weeks. A new record!

This month I put out a song that may not reach 200 streams in the same amount of time.

And it's a good song.

I kind of knew this was going to happen.

I didn't do any of the hustle things. I didn't hit up a bunch of big playlists. I didn't DM 200 people and ask them to listen.

I was in Mexico, taking a hustle break. I don't regret it, but the stark contrast has still given me emotional whiplash.

So here's some grounding.

I'm reminding myself WHY I do this.

Or rather - YOU are reminding me.

Even as I watch my Spotify numbers free-fall back to 'normal' levels, some numbers have actually increased. Streams per listener are up, for instance.

"Streams per listener" means each person is taking more time with my music.

And my Apple Music listeners are actually better for this song so far than the last one. Since I don't do much of anything to promote my stuff over there (sorry my apples), I know this is just real people taking the time to listen on their own.

Engagement is up. Connection is up.

And connection is EVERYTHING.

I make music for connection and community.

There are so many directions I could go and so many things I could chase and it can be so disorienting.

I need a North Star. And you are it.

We are it. Connection and community.

I make songs that heal me and I hope heal others, too.

I make songs that give voice to some silent inner space your heart is just longing to express but doesn't know how.

My songs see me in ways nothing else does. And I hope these songs see you, too.

And then we see each other. We connect.

I'm thinking a lot about how I build connection and community with my music and how I can focus in more on that and less on building numbers for whichever tech company is in charge today.

I'm in it for us, not for them.

I'm asking questions like "does this opportunity build community?" and "does this lead me to make deeper connections with my music?"

The hard truth is those 10,000 streams made me about $30.

$30 is the cost of one of my pre-sale vinyl records.

Wanna guess which $30 means more to me?

I'm getting ready to send out my pre-sale vinyls in May (get your order in by the end of this month!) This week I ordered the special stickers and the lyric sheets that are going to go inside.

My lyric sheets contain a section on Gratitude.

I had to fit 49 names on there because 49 of you gave money way back at the end of 2022 to help me make this record. Actually more, since some of you gave anonymously. Almost $6000 of money.

You may be on that list.

It was hard to fit 49 names on my limited amount of space. Thanks for that challenge ;)

Do you know how many Spotify streams I'd need to make $6000? About TWO MILLION.

But enough math.

What truly matters in this life cannot be counted.

As I sing on the record;

it's the little love we offer
it's the little seed of faith

Thank you for continuing to plant seeds in my career and in my spirit.

Thank you for being a lighthouse in the midst of crashing waves and unrest.

The tides roll in, the tides roll out, and there you are.


In dumb hope,

(Dave) Von Bieker

PS. I'm coming to Calgary to play a show with TAYLR on May 3 at Congress Coffee! If you'll be in town call now to book a table!