The MusicNerd Q&A With Mike Plume

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Moncton-born, Nashville-based musician Mike Plume is looking to share the Christmas Spirit.

This past March, Plume gained national attention after penning and releasing the heartfelt track “So Long Stompin’ Tom” when the iconic Maritimer singer-songwriter passed away. The song became a viral sensation of sorts, racking up 54,000 YouTube views within a week of release.

Of course, Plume is a much bigger going concern than one song. This past June, he released his latest full-length record, Red and White Blues, his first album in more than four years.

And as if that isn’t quite enough, Plume just released a Christmas EP, Back Home For Christmas, via Bandcamp. The EP is available for a pay-what-you-want download at mikeplume.bandcamp.com.

Earlier this week, Mike reminisced with The MusicNerd Chronicles about the past year and why he has embraced digital downloads as a format of getting his music heard:

What inspired you, more than 20 years into your career, to finally release a Christmas record?

Over the last few years, I have often tried to write Christmas songs. If I liked them I kept them and if not, I threw them away and never thought about them again. I had accumulated four songs that I liked and finally wrote a fifth song this past October. I couldn’t be happier with the way that the EP turned out. This EP was recorded and mixed over just a few days. At any other time in my career, I would have written these songs and then had to wait six to nine months for them to see the light of day.

Many musicians will allow their music to be streamed on the internet but fewer offer their music for free download as you’ve done with Red and White Blues and your new Christmas EP. What made you decide to go this route with your music?

There are two things that are virtually guaranteed in life: The first being that no mother is going to turn down a home made Christmas ornament from her kids. The second is that if I don’t offer music for free download, people are just going to find it for free elsewhere. Why shouldn’t I offer my music up for those who might be looking for it?

I’m assuming then that you enjoy the immediacy of recording a song and then releasing it as soon as you see fit, as you did with “So Long Stompin’ Tom”?

As much as I enjoy the album format, its popularity is dwindling. It is getting tougher and tougher to sell a full album these days. At this point, I am more inclined to release a digital 45 every six weeks than to try to bundle a bunch of songs as a complete album.

 Article published in the December 19, 2013 edition of Here Magazine