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Gensokyo Radio and the Future of Touhou Music in the West
LunarSpotlight  2014/10/04

Readers are highly encouraged to comment on this article as feedback may determine future activity at GR.

As development on GR6 continues, the staff behind Gensokyo Radio is thinking ahead to next year, and our ideas for the 2015 convention season are by far our most ambitious ever. At this time, we're at the point where we want to get feedback in order to gauge how some of our new concepts might be received by the community. Read on to catch a glimpse of what the future could be like at Gensokyo Radio.

Promoting the (Western) Touhou Music Community
Next year, we want to focus more on getting material created by Touhou music artists in the west out to fans and listeners. In short, this is easier said than done. We have a great start and a great ability to do this for western artists since we're a radio station, but this only really solves half the problem that western Touhou artists face outside of Japan.

While we are able to promote artists in this way, the channels through which artists can sell their works are more limited than what one might find in Japan. Not only is there a much larger presence of Touhou-related works in Japan (with Touhou IPs making up a significant portion of all doujin circles, as well as having the Touhou-based Reitaisai every year), but the barrier to entry for artists to get their works out in places like North America is much higher, presenting a bigger challenge.

What we want to do at Gensokyo Radio is to provide a way for these western-based Touhou artists to get their works out in a more similar manner to what occurs in Japan.

Combining Two Big Ideas
Starting in 2015, we would like to provide a custom publishing and distribution service for all western Touhou music artists as a way to help get works out in a physical format. We would offer physical distribution at conventions in North America through our own booth as Gensokyo Radio, and in this way, we may be able to sell works on the artist's behalf.

Our service would be flexible, offering two general options for artists to choose from. One would enable artists to only order CDs to be shipped to them so that they can sell their own works with their own time and effort. This would involve a higher upfront cost aimed at covering the material costs needed to produce an order, but it could potentially enable the artist to make more of a profit in the long run. The second option involves distribution through Gensokyo Radio's booth where the staff would make sales on the artist's behalf, and a percentage of the actual sale price goes back to the artist. This would require much less initial investment by the artist, but would enable them to get their work out there with less effort on their part. A combination of both could also be done.

Making the Idea a Reality
Making an idea like this actually happen takes a lot of time, money, effort, and planning. Before we can move ahead with any of the real "doing", we need to acquire knowledge first. First and foremost, we need to know how much interest there actually is from the community for such a publishing service. This doesn't just extend to artists in the US and Canada, but also to artists in Europe, South America, and beyond.

Our intent is to focus on artists who want to get out there more but don't have the means to do so on their own. Perhaps this idea might one day spread to some artists in Japan, but for now, we want to start small and make sure we can do this successfully on a more local scale.

If we feel that there is enough interest in this, we'll move forward with allocating the time, getting the necessary funding, and making sure that when the convention season comes, we'll be armed with the knowledge to help ensure that promoting the Touhou Music Universe is something we continue to do, no matter what form it may take.

Your Feedback
There are a couple ways you can provide feedback for this concept. We would like to encourage our listeners to comment below in order for us to get a better picture of if this is something we'll be able to do within the coming months. If you're an artist or if you have a comment you want to whisper in our (off-air) microphone, send us an email at staff at gensokyoradio dot net.

Stay tuned for more info on our special 3-hour event for Live #25 happening later this month, and thanks for listening!