Indie Music and Film: New Culture

Years ago, we can remember watching major films such as “Casablanca”, “Gone with the Wind”, “The Godfather” (I, II, & III), “Miracle on 34th Street”, “Superman”, “The Wizard of Oz”, “Star Wars”, “Rocky”, “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner”, “Transformers”, and “Die Hard” to name a few.  Yes, there are many more  (to numerous to name for sure); but we know you get the idea.   In addition, major films presented wonderful opportunities for major actors like Al Pacino, Jane Fonda, Shia Lebouf , Clark Gable, Humphrey Bogart,  Sidney Poitier, Judy Garland, etc.  However, the indie film scene is presented with much more difficult, but not impossible, tasks to overcome.  Issues such as lower budgets, lack of financial support or investors,  etc.  In a recent blog by Truly Free Film, the blogger discusses what he feels are the three biggest problems in the indie film business.  He lists problems such as: mindset, infrastructure, and content.  The blogger also discusses how to make better films, as well as taking a look at various issues and actions to resolve them.  See his blog at:

In yet another blog by the Rain Dance Film Festival, Elliott Grove discusses seven challenges that the indie film industry faces.   He identifies these challenges as:

  • Digital revolution producing more product than buyers
  • Online distribution commonplace
  • Storytelling techniques, ideas and creativity
  • Difference in cinema distribution
  • Public Funding (budget cuts)
  • Lack of Development Funding (here this presents weak story lines)
  • Social media

Elliott’s blog may be viewed at:

Today, there are numerous opportunities for indie film makers and indie music artists whose songs are being featured in many indie films.  Although there are still many challenges, we believe that the indie film and music industry is on the brink of a new culture.  Even though there is great access to the Internet, yet promotion and finance are very crucial to indie film makers.  Take a look at the Rain Dance Film Festival acknowledgment and discussion of an indie film called “The Machine”.

Here’s some food for thought:  What type of challenges confront African-American and other minority indie film makers?  Please feel free to comment.


Sounds of Imani Talks about Vision and Motivation

Sounds of Imani is an indie contemporary gospel recording artist in Detroit, Michigan (USA) whose musical harmony brings joy, healing and inspiration to listeners of all ages.  Imani is an African word meaning faith and this artist definitely lives up to its name.  Sounds of Imani was formed in 1996 out of a vision to provide the music world with a distinct sound of excellence and quality musical expertise; as well as to develop and create positive, uplifting, and encouraging music.  Gerald & Carol, the versatile husband and wife team  (along with their band) thank God for longevity and total submission to biblical principles.

This artist has continued to remain focused on pursuing the goals they have set forth.   Maintaining a self-contained unit certainly isn’t easy but Sounds of Imani realizes that working with a unit of individuals prompts commitment, respect, and loyalty (extremely important).   Sounds of Imani has worked with various musicians over a period of time and is still going strong with longtime backing musicians of  many years.

When we think about the term “vision” we consider its meaning to be somewhat centered around “strategic forecasting”.  Although it has not yet come to pass,  people can still plan with the expectation of it coming to pass.  Sound familiar?  Faith is defined as being “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (KJV – Hebrews 11:1).  In other words, faith is the foundation on which all our hopes for the future are built; the evidence of things not seen means that our faith in action shows we are not driven by what currently appears before us.  Without faith we would limit ourselves to a narrow minded concept of what we see with a “worldly” or  “carnal sight”.

But what about motivation?  Simply this,  “I know it’s going to happen, therefore I’m going to do all that I can to prepare myself for the fulfillment of that vision”.  We must be ready to walk in the door once the door opens.  Another great passage of scripture also states, “For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak; though it tarry wait for it, because it will surely come” (KJV – Habakkuk 2:3)

What do you suppose keeps indie music artists going?  What motivates them?  Should you be a visionary?  What does it take to reach the goals you have set?  Do you encourage or inspire other music artists?

Take a look at the interview below and let us know what you think.