Marshall Crenshaw’s last record, 2009′s “Jaggedland,” contained some of his best songwriting in years. Another way to say this is that it contained some of anybody’s best songwriting in years. I’ve been watching the music business for a long time, so it shouldn’t have surprised me when a record this good, thick with hooks and bristling with bittersweet observations on life and love and the passage of time, passed through the commercial marketplace without creating much stir. But it did, and it did. It may have surprised Crenshaw too. Or maybe he’s been there and done that too many times. Whatever the impetus may have been, though, for Crenshaw to Kickstart his upcoming project, it’s a welcome development, and an undertaking every lover of pop music ought to support.
Backers will help Crenshaw launch a series of six limited-edition EPs over two years, on 10-inch picture-sleeved vinyl and digital download. Each EP will contain a new Crenshaw song, an old one re-recorded and a cover, and they’ll land every four months. Backers will fund the first year. The whole series will eventually be available to all, but where’s the fun in that? Supporters get to grab the new stuff first, Crenshaw gets his money up front, and everybody’s a winner. (Especially the big-ticket backers: Pledge $5000 or more and Crenshaw will play a show in your living room.) I’m backing it. With just over 24 hours to go and a little under $10,000 to be raised, you should too.