Published Feb 22, 2017Ted Leo has been on a bit of a collaborative streak, having reunited with Citizens Arrest back in 2011 and delivered an album as the Both with Aimee Mann in 2014. Now, he's taking up his own name once again and crowdfunding a brand new record.
Leo has launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise $85,000 USD by March 24 in order to finance his latest project. He describes the move as "taking control of the process of bringing my work directly and rapidly to those who want it."
Some of the songs have been gestating for five years, though Leo admits that a number of personal and financial obstacles prevented him from pulling together an album until now.
"But having the eventual freedom to work on it at my own pace, and in my own space, has allowed this body of songs to change and grow with me," he explains. "And now we find ourselves in a new political reality, and I find myself compelled to keep writing."
Leo has enlisted the help of a number of other collaborators to complete work on the project, including Pharmacists drummer Chris Wilson, Jean Grae, Adrienne Barry, his Both collaborator Aimee Mann (who provided harmony on a track called "Lonsdale Avenue"), Jonathan Coulton, Rachel Lichtman, his brother Danny, Jodi and Kickstarter's own Molly Neuman.
Fans who want to support the project with monetary donations will be rewarded with an array of quirky perks. A mere $9 will get you a digital download of the finished album, $15 will get you a physical CD and postcard, and $25 will get you an LP and postcard.
In addition to the new music, there are "Bag 'o Things" merch bundles, mixtapes made up of Leo's old demos, a $500 Skype chat, a $500 vegan dinner date, $1,000 personalized songs and — for a $4,500 pledge — a private solo show anywhere you please.
Leo's shared a five-minute preview of what he's been working on, and you can give that a listen below before deciding how much you want to pledge. See the complete list of rewards and follow along with the project's progress over at its official Kickstarter page.