RPM Challenge to make an album in a month begins Feb. 1

From a press release:

RPM Challenge to make an album in a month begins Feb. 1

The RPM Challenge is simple, but has compelled more than 8,000 bands from all seven continents to join since 2006. As the February 1 start date approaches, musicians across the globe are signing up at www.rpmchallenge.com to participate in the 2015 challenge, and more are always welcome.

It’s free, it’s fun, but it’s not always easy. The RPM Challenge invites anyone to record an album in 28 days, just because you can. That’s 10 songs or 35 minutes of original material, written and recorded during the month of February. Participants can either create music in isolation if that’s their preference, or join the online conversation to blog, add photos, participate in discussion groups, trade ideas, and send messages to fellow RPMers during the challenge.

To date, the challenge has resulted in the creation of an astonishing 30,000+ new songs. The music spans every genre imaginable—from electronic to experimental, from hip hop to heavy metal—and represents the work of all types of musicians: aspiring youth, longtime local bands, hobbyists, students, and closet musicians.

The music scene works together to lend a little peer pressure as musicians help each other to the finish line. The web site is the hub of the project, a tool for the musicians to connect and support each other. With thousands of musicians all working alongside each other, groups that might never come across each other in the regular world can meet, share ideas and collaborate through the site at rpmchallenge.com, bringing fresh perspectives and new insight into their own music. The RPM community has become a vital part of the experience. Personal connections made during the event have endured long after February ends, giving musicians a group of like-minded people with whom to share their artistic life.

RPM Challenge began in February 2006 as a creative challenge for local bands in Portsmouth, N.H., where it was conceived by a local arts and culture newspaper in order to further the local music scene.  The RPM Challenge grew to include the international music community, where it has been covered in popular blogs, on music Web sites like Pitchfork.com and on the National Public Radio show “All Things Considered,” with RPM projects featured many times on NPR’s “All Songs Considered.”

So this February, your option could be to hibernate, or you could choose to write a fistful of new material and get it recorded alongside other independent musicians from all genres and walks of life who will come together with a common goal: to set aside any obstacles to producing music for the month of February, and to find themselves on March 1 each holding in their hands a new CD of their own original work that they would not have made otherwise.

There is no fee to participate in the RPM Challenge. Bands who choose to sign up and complete the challenge must postmark their RPM 2015 CDs by noon on March 2 to RPM Challenge, c/o RiverRun Bookstore, 142 Fleet St., Portsmouth, N.H. 03801. For more information, to see the participating bands, or to read the whole text of the challenge, go to rpmchallenge.com.

About Alli Marshall
Alli Marshall is the arts section editor at Mountain Xpress. She's lived in Asheville for more than 20 years and loves live music, visual art, fiction and friendly dogs. Alli is the winner of the 2016 Thomas Wolfe Fiction Prize and the author of the novel "How to Talk to Rockstars," published by Logosophia Books. Follow me @alli_marshall

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