Marjana Semkina

is creating sleepwalking music

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Observer Tier
reward item
$5
per month

Thank you for joining the party <3


Here's what you get for being with me:

• you'll be the first one to know absolutely any news

• backstage videos when any kind of studio work is happening

• blog posts about the writing process, band's life and personal reflections (i'm terrible at sharing my experiences, but i'll learn)

• occasional video blogs from places i go with or without the band, including recording studios, venues, museums and other pretty places

• once-in-three-months live streamed Bedroom Gigs with my usual chatting from wherever in the world i am. 


and when the time for an album comes, you'll get it earlier than everyone.

All-The-Music Tier
reward item
$10
per month
Hey, this is amazing! You're amazing!


Here's what i have in store for you:
• getting access to all of the musical stuff before general public (promise not to share)! 
• demos and alternative mixes of the songs from time to time
• bedroom covers. me, my guitar, sad songs, and i even let you choose what i record sometimes!
• access to my Discord server - a chatroom where we all get together and share our thoughts and experiences. also pictures of cats.


Plus:
• you'll be the first one to know absolutely any news
• backstage videos when any kind of studio work is happening
• blog posts about the writing process, band's life and personal reflections (i'm terrible at sharing my experiences, but i'll learn)
• occasional video blogs from places i go with or without the band, including recording studios, venues, museums and other pretty places
• once-in-three-months live streamed Bedroom Gigs with my usual chatting from wherever in the world i am. 


and when the time for an album comes, you'll get it earlier than everyone.
Includes Discord benefits
Bedtime Reading Live Stream Tier
reward item
$25
per month
So so so thankful. This is very generous and i'll try to make the experience as fun for you as possible!


You'll be getting
• monthly hour-long live streams with a live chat. I'll be talking and singing and hosting Bedtime Reading sessions (rn it's Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. As of this moment, we're on chapter 6). Join in!


Plus:
• getting access to all of the musical stuff before general public (promise not to share)! 
• demos and alternative mixes of the songs from time to time
• bedroom covers. me, my guitar, sad songs. i try to do it regularly but unfortunately the workload lately isn't letting me.
• access to my Discord server - a chatroom where we all get together and share our thoughts and experiences. also pictures of cats.
• you'll be the first one to know absolutely any news
• backstage videos when any kind of studio work is happening
• blog posts about the writing process, band's life and personal reflections (i'm terrible at sharing my experiences, but i'll learn)
• occasional video blogs from places i go with or without the band, including recording studios, venues, museums and other pretty places
• once-in-three-months live streamed Bedroom Gigs with my usual chatting from wherever in the world i am. 


and when the time for an album comes, you'll get it earlier than everyone.
Includes Discord benefits

89

patrons

About

Hi, my name is Marjana (or Mariana for easier pronunciation!) and i sing.

My band Iamthemorning is quite known in small circles but lately i've been trying to find a way to stand on my own two feet as a solo artist, which ended up in a solo record called Sleepwalking. I've been quietly working on it in 2019 - with significant breaks that were required for making an album with the band and touring in support of it. Well, quietly outside Patreon - but people here knew about it long before anyone else found out. Because they are the ones who made it possible to make it happen. They are the ones who supported me along the way, encouraged me when i felt depressed and of course, over time, made it possible for me to pay for the production.

When i got Patreon six months prior the announcement of the album i was planning to save up to move countries and continue my life in the UK. Arts Council England vouched for me and UK Government gave me Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa and i was determined to move over as soon as i have enough on my bank account to present real estate agencies to allow me to rent a place of my own....but then the album happened. It massively slowed me down because it was all i could think about and i had to spend my time where the studios are - in Russia and London, with no time to spare for anything else really, except for my 5 days a week dayjob and full-time band's activity (no, i don't sleep). And more than that, everything i saved for the move went into the album, because priorities, and i have no regrets. :)

But why want to leave Russia in the first place?

You see, if you've been born and bred there, they don't allow you to stay out of the country too much, and this affects everything in my life. More than anything, i want freedom to leave if i want to, and work on my music in another country, somewhere where i feel myself, somewhere where people would respect me for what i am and not treat me like social pariah because of the career path i've chosen.

So what's the problem?

According to my visa, in order to get the UK citizenship, i have to make a living within my field of expertise, and that would be music. But even though my band was successful enough to prove that i'm worthy of Tier 1 visa to Arts Council, it is nowhere near bringing real profit - and here, i'd like to take a short detour to tell you, why.

In the past five years, neither me nor my colleague Gleb (we're officially a duo) have taken any money from the band despite releasing 3 studio albums, one live album and a Blu-ray movie. We keep everything saved on our band's account because we know that the production costs of our albums are impossible to cover if we don't save for years and years, so we do that. Every penny that we're paid for the gigs we use to pay our session musicians and to cover touring costs (travel, visas, accommodation, crew fees). Because of how expensive touring is we don't really do it much, which is really bad for the band.

All of this also requires a lot of work, and i'm taking care of majority of it. I pack and send merch for our online shop, do social media and all necessary admin, book gigs in Russia and make sure people show up and pretty much everything else that has to be done if you're in a band. As a side job, i sometimes make origami birds to raise money for animal shelters.

But none of this brings me any profit that i can show Home Office during the settlement application process. I have a beautiful full-time job that helps me get by and support my parents, it allows me to put most of my energy into music, lets me tour, but as i already said, to get the passport i need to earn with music.

So after a couple years of trying to fight the crippling self-doubt (i was thinking about getting it long before the possibility to move to the UK came around), i decided to try Patreon. If Patreon works, maybe in a few years i'll be able to get settlement in the UK and concentrate a bit more on my music as opposed to making ends meet. I'll be able to move countries while still dedicating most of my time to music, writing songs, playing gigs, taking part in all sorts of music-related projects and being in direct touch with the community of people passionate about the genre overall and what we do in particular.

My ultimate goal with this page is to earn the minimal UK salary. This should be enough for the Home Office to consider me eligible for settlement eventually (more specific, three years after i officially move e.g. rent a place, get a bank account yada yada yada), and even if i don't reach the target, i might try and move out of Russia nonetheless. It's not cheap but it's good for my career in music and even better for my soul (i'm very open about my mental health struggles and i would love to dedicate more time to helping people that are in a similar position).

I hope you will join me on this journey. Being a musician is not easy, neither mentally nor financially, it's not a secret to anyone who is paying attention but i hope that this page will help me because nothing else seems to have this power.

Here's to our new adventure together <3
Marjana 
Goals
89 of 200 patrons
I am never planning to stop making music and when i manage to reach a wider audience and finally have a place to live and work in peace i'm hoping to be able to promise you something on a more regular basis. Monthly covers AND demos would be my ultimate goal and i'm planning to reach it as soon as possible.
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