Jorge Otero – vocals, guitars, harmonica, mandolin.
Paul Bertrand – piano, organ, background vocals.
Danny Montgomery – drums.
Juanjo Zamorano – bass, background vocals.
Juan Flores – sax, clarinet, flute.
Héctor Braga – cello, hurdy-gurdy, violin, bagpipes, harp.
Miguel Herrero – trumpet, flügelhorn, glockenspiel, percussion.
For a band that you’ve probably never heard of, we sure have some cool stories to tell…
Stormy Mondays started in Oviedo in 1991. Our first gigs were on the street.
When trying to come up with a name, we used the same trick as the Rolling Stones: we decided to take our name from a blues classic. For us, it was “They Call It Stormy Monday” by T-Bone Walker, published in 1947.
Stormy Mondays and Free Music
Stormy Mondays were pioneers in distributing their music on the internet, Copyleft, Creative Commons licenses and the Free Music movement. We resigned from SGAE (the Spanish copyright society) and we distributed our songs for free on our website, for years upon years. At the same time, we kept releasing and selling records on different formats, and many times in limited editions.
Giving our songs away took us further than we could have ever dreamt: we got to play at Woodstock ’99 festival, and our song “Sunrise Number 1” was played in Space. Sharing our music brought us a lot of oppportunities, new friends… and we even took part on some memorable TV debates.
Today it’s hard to imagine how revolutionary it was, in 1999, to offer a free mp3 download of a song. Twenty years later, it’s time to make an important change. In a world dominated by music streaming, the fight for the Free Music doesn’t make sense for us anymore. We won’t stop giving away some songs from each record, but we are coming back to the world of copyright. This time, through IMRO, the Irish Music Rights Organization.
We don’t want multi-million dollar companies like Google, Facebook, YouTube and Spotify to pay copyrights that belong to us, but that we can’t receive if we are not part of the system. And we also want our songs available for being featured on films, series or ads, which is not possible if we are not part of a performing rights society.
To sum up: we have enjoyed the journey of free music, and we’ve travelled all the way until -twenty years later- we arrived at the last stop. It’s time to take another train that can take us even further.