Arts & Entertainment

Local music supported through crowdfunding

A Temple alumnus founded organization seeks $50,000 for a new music campaign.

As he sat on a flight from Israel to Philadelphia, David Silver had no way of knowing his newly launched Kickstarter would bring in more than $3,500 in less than a day.

Silver’s business incubator RECphilly—which supports local musicians by creating relationships between artists, venues and industry professionals—continued to accumulate donations, ending its first week with almost a third of its $50,000 goal. The Kickstarter quickly became the most popular music campaign on the site.

According to RECphilly’s Kickstarter, the organization plans to launch an online network to serve as an “opportunity hub, consistently creating quality opportunities for Philadelphia musicians both locally and nationally.” The organization aims to create an application where businesses and local artists can exist on one plane to interact and connect with each other.

RECphilly was started in 2013 by Temple alumnus David Silver and friend Will Toms to bridge the gap between bands, brands and small businesses.

“The Philly music scene is amazing, probably one of the best in the country,” Silver said. “It’s the structure of our city that needs help. Our mission is to reconstruct a successful music industry.”

In order to reach this goal, RECphilly started the Support Philly Campaign to raise $50,000 by Oct. 15. Funds will be split between three major elements: creating a studio space called the RECroom, constructing an online presence for networking and directly benefitting local artists.

As of now, the RECroom studio space consists of an open area with a visual lab, a writing lounge and a demo recording space with second-hand equipment. Upgrades will be made to the recording and visual equipment to make the space more legitimate and attractive for local artists to use.

“We’ve identified a handful of musicians, really the top talent that we think can mold Philadelphia’s sound in music moving forward,” Silver said. “We want to be able to give them that opportunity through this research and development phase.”

The last third of the Kickstarter money will go to the core of the organizations movement: the local artists themselves. Through different scholarships, RECphilly will give these artists a chance to expand their musical endeavors. RECphilly local artist Luke O’Brien, who performs as Lukey the Bird, said every time he attends an event hosted by the organization, “the crowd is always there because they love music and they love the arts.”

“As you’re performing, they’re listening,” O’Brien said. “I feel like it’s the perfect home for me. It all just happened so fast, [RECphilly] was taking me under their wing and it really re-energized me as an artist and made me excited about the potential of what could happen.”

RECphilly is planning dozens of pop-up performances throughout the city in order to promote and raise awareness for the campaign. Local musicians involved with RECphilly will perform in parks, on museum steps and on Main Campus. The campaign has raised $15,672 of its goal.

For Hayley Mansfield, account manager for RECphilly, the Kickstarter is just part of the organization’s future.

“The point of it is really to get people excited about what we’re doing and to prove to the city and to investors that what we’re doing is worth contributing to,” said Mansfield. “Having this little jumpstart is really what we need, but we don’t see it as the end.”

Emily Thomas can be reached at emily.ralsten.thomas@temple.edu.

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