Faces in the crowd: WNC crowdfunding campaigns

Dulci Ellenberger, far right, performs regularly with her country motown quartet Sweet Claudette, but she's also ready to go solo with a brand new album in 2015. Photo courtesy of the band Courtesy of Sweet Claudette

Crowdfunding platforms make it possible for individuals and organizations of any size to harness social networks and raise start-up capital for projects that might otherwise fail due to lack of funding. Each week, Xpress highlights notable Western North Carolina crowdsourcing initiatives that may inspire readers to become new faces in the crowd.

DULCI ELLENBERGER’S DEBUT SOLO ALBUM

“I’ve got the songs, the producer and the time,” says Dulci Ellenberger. “Now all I need is the money!” The vocalist and guitarist, who is also an active member of country Motown band Sweet Claudette, says that eight years of full-time musicianship alongside talented bandmates and friends have finally prepared her to venture into new territory. “I feel like I’m finally ready to record my first solo album,” she says. “All the ingredients are there. It’s just going to cost a little more than I have.” Ellenberger, who plans to partner with producer Seth Kauffman on the debut, aims to raise $4,000 by Saturday, Feb. 28, to cover recording, mastering, marketing and at least 100 physical copies of her new album.

10-CAN PERCUSSION’S NEW SONG

Born in 2013 and comprised of Mars Hill University graduates Corey Denham, Emory Hensley and Justin Mabry, 10-can percussion is “committed to the performance of new and classic works for percussion.” The musicians, who revel in ditching the status-quo, perform Afro-Brazilian-inspired tunes often in WNC and are currently enjoying coaching other ensembles during their residency at MHU. An upcoming undertaking by the trio, however, will see the percussionists returning to the role of students. They hope to employ the expertise of composer and long-time mentor Andy Smith, who specializes in Afro-Cuban and Brazilian music, in creating a new song tailored to the 10-Can style. The tapping troupe aims to raise $550 by Monday, March 2, to cover the costs of the collaboration, including recording and filming the song.

Image from 10-can percussion campaign page
Image from 10-can percussion campaign page

DUINOKIT JR.

“This kit could be the simple solution to the most dreaded complaint parents hear during the summer — ‘I’m bored,’” reads the campaign page for DuinoKit Jr. Creator Dan Alich says the user-friendly system is designed to get youths with no knowledge of programming interested in the many applications of a simple do-it-yourself electronic device. The stripped-down prototype — whose uses are only limited to user creativity, according to Alich — was created in response to feedback from educators and parents. They’re advice? Make it smaller and simpler. Alich has already surpassed his $13,500 goal for manufacturing a batch of DuinoKits and was also featured as a Kickstarter Staff Pick. His campaign will be funded on Sunday, March 1.

Send your crowdsourcing campaign news to kmcreynolds@mountainx.com. A limited number of campaigns will be highlighted each week, at Xpress‘ discretion. Campaigns must be locally based and should represent a current project with an achievable goal. Conditions are subject to change. Read about more Western North Carolina projects here.

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About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

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