Von Bondies Turn Free Agents For New Album
Attention music industry: the Von Bondies are available. "Not for sale," cautions frontman Jason Stollsteimer, but looking for a new label deal.Attention music industry: the Von Bondies are available. "Not for sale," cautions frontman Jason Stollsteimer, but looking for a new label deal.
The Detroit group -- whose 2004 major label debut "Pawn Shoppe Heart," came out on Sire and launched the hit "C'mon C'mon" -- has asked to be released from its deal and gotten approval, so long as it doesn't sign with another major. The Von Bondies have finished a new album, "Love, Hate And Then There's You," financed by founding members Stollsteimer and drummer Don Blum, as well as an EP, "We Are Kamikazes," that the group is distributing on its own.
The problem, Stollsteimer tells Billboard.com, is that "everybody we talk to thinks we're still signed. Everybody thinks we're still on Warner Bros. Our shows are sold out. People still come and they still like the old songs and they're really excited about the new ones. We sell tons of merch. But we haven't gotten one (label phone call)."
The group played several shows last week at South by Southwest in hopes of spreading the word. "We're not looking for a big thing," Stollsteimer explains. "It doesn't make sense for us to be on a major. Majors are for bands that sell 500,000 to a million records. We're happy selling 100,000; we're proud of that. But majors aren't."
The group had a successful tour of Europe earlier this year but has called off plans for an April tour in the U.S. for financial reasons. Stollsteimer says some May dates have been booked that he hopes to keep. For now, he's mostly excited that the Von Bondies are active and is optimistic that the new music will get out in some form.
"In a funny way, we're veterans, but right now I feel like a kid," he said, adding with a laugh, "my back feels like a veteran. But my head and heart and how nervous I felt getting onstage tonight feels like a kid. We definitely don't want to give up on this."