So your social media has possibly been blowing up all weekend with news of Brooklyn metal band Unlocking the Truth signing a $1.7 million dollar record deal with Sony. Whether you are happy for these young metal heads, or not-this record deal is NOT what the media has reported it to be.
According to The NY Post -the group, featuring guitarist Malcolm Brickhouse (13), bassist Alec Atkins (13), and drummer Jarad Dawkins (12), have signed a deal with Sony for upwards of $1.7 million, thanks to diligent self-promotion. One day, they decided to take their instruments to Times Square and video of the session went viral-with over 1.5 million views. The band were profiled endlessly, leading to gigs opening for Living Color, and performing at Coachella and a few dates of Warped Tour, so there is quite the buzz about them. The band were discovered in Washington Square Park by Eric Clapton’s drummer, Steve Jordan and eventually referred the kids to their now-manager, Alan Sacks, who coincidentally is the co-creator of the 70s sitcom Welcome Back Cotter, according to Metal Injection.
The $1.7 Million contract is NOT being reported completely according to Sony:
The band is actually only getting a $60,000 upfront advance (implying of course, the label will recuperate that money off album sales). If the first album sells 250,000 copies, the band could get upwards of a $350,000 advance for their second album. Sony has comitted to two albums, with the option to eventually release six. Since all three musicians are minors, the contracts had to be filed in a Manhattan supreme court. The deal which could possibly net them $1.7 million, assuming high sales expectations are met. Like so many record deals which the media mis-report IE Chief Keef for example-If anything, they're actually $60k in debt at the moment. That doesnt stop these kids from being psyched:
“I’m so excited! We’ve made it!” gushed 12-year-old drummer Jarad Dawkins, of Crown Heights.
Trivium bassist Paolo Gregaletto chimed in on Facebook with the following:
The young kids that were signed got a 60k recording budget for their first album, and have to sell 250,000 copies to receive royalties. That isn't a 1.7 million dollar recording deal. I hope that they got a good lawyer and someone looking out for them.
Veteran A & R executive Mike Gitter, who currently works at Razor and Tie, chimed in with this note on Facebook:
There is a MONGO-difference between a 60K deal (which probably includes a publishing component) and 1.7 million as klutzily intimated by The Daily News. Mini-Max formulas and subsequent options do not make for a deal of that preposterous stature as emphasized here. Kudos to Unlocking The Truth for getting a major deal. The Rock N Roll Swindle/Afro-Punk Takeover trundles on! The Kids Will Have Their Say.
This deal is not what has been reported exactly in mainstream media channels, however it is still a tremendous achievement on behalf of these excited young Metal-heads, and a shot in the arm for the entire genre within the music community in addition to being a voice for a new generation of urban embrace of all things Metal.
Info cited from Metal Injection