Posted By Anna Watson
Stu Buchanan’s Real Book

Stu Buchanan was a most beloved jazz musician especially in Christchurch where he based and all around NZ. One of his former students, Nanako Sato, helped him launch a PledgeMe campaign in 2013 to fund his album “Hey! What’s the Time?”. While Stu has since passed away, Nanako is keeping his legacy alive through a book that contains Stu’s stories and compositions. We talk to Nanako to find out more about the campaign.

Why do you think this campaign is important?

Stu Buchanan was a beloved jazz musician, especially in Christchurch, where he was based, but also all around New Zealand. Throughout his 50 year music career, he had frequent appearances on various radio shows as member of several music ensembles from the 70s to the 90s, entertaining people at many bars, weddings, and jazz festivals. He taught or gigged with most of the musicians in Christchurch. Many people are still grieving his passing in 2014. He was much loved by those he inspired and encouraged by his music, music making, and his teaching. To have his original compositions book would be a fantastic and fitting tribute for his former students, colleagues, fans, and whanau.

I started this project, the making of the Stu Buchanan Real Book while he was still alive. With great time and effort, and with his permission, I have compiled his compositions from 1968 to 2013 into Real Book format. When Stu passed away in 2014, it was really hard for me to keep working on this project but gradually I have endeavoured to bring this work to completion. It is with intense feelings of satisfaction and relief that this project has almost reached its final production.

I think this campaign is important because I believe it will reach out to much wider audience than what I could achieve by email or Facebook.

What motivated you to reach out to your crowd?

I organised and set up a PledgeMe campaign for Stu in 2013 in order for him to record his album “Hey! What’s the Time”, which was a great success and for which I know Stu was extremely appreciative. During that campaign, I realised that the target audience of his music was much greater than I had been aware. Consequently, I made some new friends and acquaintances with people who all shared in a common love and respect for Stu. Once again, my hope is that this platform will reach its wide audience.

Another thing I learnt from the previous campaign was that through PledgeMe, I was able to count how many copies to print. As I do not have a budget to print off hard copies, I undertook a survey last year, asking people to confirm their interest in a hard copy of a Stu Buchanan Real Book or their preference for a PDF version only. Surprisingly, even in this online age, people still preferred to receive a hard copy. In fact, most people (and especially musos) wanted both a PDF and a hard copy version.

What do you have planned for the rest of the campaign – anything for us to look forward to?

What I am really excited about is reaching my goal so that I can print off the copies. I am organising a book launch party in May. I will post the details on the PledgeMe page as well as the RIP Stu Buchanan Facebook page.

Anything you would like to shout out to your crowd?

I want to say thank you for reading this blog. Many thanks to those who have already pre-ordered the books and left lovely messages for me. You guys are amazing. And thanks in advance to the people still intending to contribute in the near future.

I sincerely hope people will realise that I will only be able to print off copies equal to the number of orders I get through this campaign as there is no other budget to allow for additional copies. I hope no one will miss out ordering this time, so please help older people or those around you with a computer phobia and offer them your assistance for the PledgeMe process as this may cause a lot of stress for elderly people, like my mother.

To order a copy of Stu’s Real Book, check out the campaign page here

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