Hi! I’m Penfriend aka music producer and solo artist Laura Kidd. Half of Obey Robots, ex- She Makes War. Thanks for visiting this page!
This is your invitation…to receive thoughtful, lovingly made limited edition art and music bundles, to directly support the creation of new music, and to be treated like the VIP music fan you already are in a genuinely supportive online community.
Will you join us?
WHAT YOU GET
Since my club started in 2019, members have received 15 bundles of art and music in the post and via download (nearly 100 audio tracks shared in total), and have participated in weekly warm, friendly and illuminating conversations in The Correspondent’s Club Forum – my ad-free space for supportive discussion.
So far, Correspondents have supported the making of 2 studio albums, 50 podcast episodes, 5 official music videos and more than 200 YouTube videos. Phew!
Browse ongoing membership options below, visit this page for one-off sponsorships, and thank you for being here xo
Whichever tier you choose, you will receive:
+ weekly Airmail emails
+ access to The Correspondent’s Club Forum
+ monthly Voicemail / Facemail updates
+ download code for all official Penfriend album releases
+ VIP invitations to bi-monthly private online events
PLUS extra perks listed below
No commitment, switch up or down tiers on a pro rata basis whenever you like
Pay for 12 months and save
I don’t want to join but I would like to contribute
Thank you! You’re always very welcome to pick up physical or digital music or merch in my shop or on Bandcamp, or make a one-off contribution of your choice via Paypal.me xx
Why do you have a membership club?
I’ve been releasing my music since 2009, funding the recording and release of five-and-a-bit albums through a combination of Bandcamp pre-orders, crowdfunding campaigns and merch sales. I love inviting people along for the entire journey of making and releasing an album, and am lucky enough to have had some wonderfully warm support from music fans over the years.
Running pre-orders and crowdfunders is a gargantuan effort to make for each one-off thing, so for me having this membership club ticking along at the heart of my activities makes way more sense. It brings a sense of real, ongoing community without all that distracting marketing activity, meaning I can spend more time and energy making music and videos to share with you.
Who runs The Correspondent’s Club?
Me – Laura. I set it up on my website and I administer it.
Is this a Patreon?
Yes and no. It’s the same idea, but I decided against using a platform like Patreon for a few reasons.
1) I’ve been burned before – Pledge Music folded and took £6000 of my crowdfunded money at the end of 2018, so I have trust issues generally.
2) The majority of my supporters are currently in the UK, and as Patreon is a US company, all non-US payments will come with a currency conversion fee. I loathe middlepersons, and it doesn’t make sense that you should have to pay more.
3) I earn more money this way because there’s one less person in the middle to pay.
What will you use my money for?
I’m a full-time artist, so your generous contributions pay for everything. I have various tech costs including web hosting, a subscription to Restrict Content Pro (the WordPress plugin I use for the membership club), mailing list fees, shop fees etc, costs for mixing, mastering and manufacturing my music, as well as the usual roof-over-my-head, food-in-my-mouth type of concerns.
I feel extraordinarily fortunate to be in a position where I’ve been able to make this my full-time occupation due to the relentless encouragement of people like you over the years. I spent a long time ignoring the clear signs that enough people liked what I was making for me to be able to do it every day, but I’m certainly making up for those lost years now.
Why should I give you money?
I don’t think you “should” do anything. As an artist, though, I find myself living in a time where the art I make is expected to be available for free, fees for live performances are shockingly low, and music industry vultures treat us like idiots. I decided long ago to opt out of all that nonsense and focus on what I feel is most important – making music and sharing it with the people who want, need and enjoy it.
Some of those people are in a position where they can choose to pay for it, by buying downloads / CDs / vinyl, and others find it fun to actively fund the making of new work, in exchange for a peek into the creative process and the warm glow they get seeing their name in the credits. Thank you for considering joining their ranks.
Is there a free tier?
No. I consider my mailing list the free tier – join us there and I’ll send you two free songs and stories to your inbox right away, and keep in touch over the coming months.
What if I can’t afford it?
Then you’re very welcome to:
1. Join my mailing list for free songs and stories.
2. Subscribe to my YouTube channel to watch my weekly videos.
3. Visit my Bandcamp pages for Penfriend and She Makes War, where you’ll find plenty of digital releases marked “pay what you want”. You can enter any amount from £0 to infinity.
Who or what is Penfriend?
Penfriend is my solo music project – my name is Laura Kidd. You can read more about me here, and get to know me better on my YouTube channel.
If your question still hasn’t been answered, click here to send us your query.