Glenn Gamboa writes about music for Newsday.
Ryan Star, energized by the success of his self-released "Animals" EP, is now looking to see what else he can accomplish with the support of his fans.
The Dix Hills native launched a PledgeMusic campaign earlier this month to finance the completion of a new album and within a week already reached two-thirds of his goal.
"Thank you for reinvigorating me," Star says in a note to supporters on the site. "The outpouring of love and support I have felt from all of you is just so inspiring to me."
Star left Island Records earlier this year to take more control of the plans for his career and released the EP "Animals" (Ryan Star) in August on his own. Simply through word-of-mouth and his own social media campaign, "Animals" reached the Top 10 on iTunes alternative rock chart, with the single and video "Impossible" starting to get radio airplay.
Now, he's looking to capitalize on that momentum.
"I am so close to completing the music, but I need your help to get to the finish line," Star says in a note to supporters. "Together we can break the old traditional mold of how music is released."
Star is also breaking the mold of the usual crowdfunding campaign, offering a wide array of experiences and artifacts -- ranging from a $300 picnic in Central Park, complete with acoustic serenade, to the $25,000 diamond ring designed by Star's sister, Kristen Farrell, that appeared in the "Impossible" video -- as well as the usual album downloads and limited editions.
Star sees the campaign as a comment about the music industry, adding, "Help me show the world that nobody can stop the music if people want to hear it."
Contact The Long Island Sound at glenn.gamboa@ newsday.com or follow @ndmusic on Twitter.