Re; My relationship with Jess Hart
Jess Hart is a young musician that sought me out regarding my recording activities on the Sunshine Coast. She was interested in how I worked and the recording facilities that I work with at my home. She had done a previous album that I listened to and was impressed by her talent and the sound of her album. Based on Jess’s opinion of our interactions and the quality of my previous work with female artists we formed a mutual interest in working on her musical material. She then asked if she could help out on sessions in exchange for gaining insight on how I produced music and production work on her material. I agreed to this exchange. So she kept herself informed as to when I was working and came by during sessions. I never had any expectations of her having to be there or that the sessions would be held up if she wasn’t there. Accepting her help in an artistic environment I was and still am willing to work with Jess to complete a production in the spirit of our artistic relationship
The reason this agreement broke down and Jess is trying to interpret this artistic verbal contract as employment is because of an unrelated disagreement I had with a room mate of hers that she took sides over. The unrelated dispute had to do with an art and music festival that I am a board member of and had nothing to do with Jess. Jess and I had a very amiable relationship up to this point and I was completely taken aback by the
breakdown of our relationship and the ensuing attitude towards me..
This was never an employer employee relationship this was an informal artistic agreement between Jess Hart and me. There were no regular hours ever and to even average out time spent has to be at the very least a partial fabrication. I didn’t need and couldn’t afford to pay an assistant for help with my work. I do a lot of production work for artistic and speculative considerations that never see any financial benefit.
They were never employed by me. they hung around my studio helping out in exchange for my services in producing thier music. I was also interested in artistically in this artist to want to work on thier music.
This form is called a request for payment
Employment Standards Branch
Ministry of Jobs Tourism and skills training and Minister Responsible for labour.
From: Ray Fulber <XXXXX@XXXXXX.XXX>
Date: July 3, 2013 1:15:07 PM PDT
To: Jess Hart <XXXXX@XXXXXX.XXX>
Subject: Re: studio
I didn't intend my last letter as a negotiation. Get a second opinion from Work B.C. if that's where you want to go. I don't accept your invoice and I will remind you that money was never part of our original arrangement. I would never of hired you that many hours for cash. I would never have agreed to this exchange if I didn't like your music and want to produce some of it. 100$ a day ?? We didn't discuss anything other than that we were sad that you didn't feel right about working here any more and that I felt like the data recovery should be considered seperate.
The only reason you don't feel like honouring our original agreement is because I told your roommate Nir that I think he was being childish about a grudge he was holding against Chris Hershiemer. If you really believe this is just between the two of us then you must be in some kind of denial about your relationship with Nir and how much you are influenced by that. His hurt feelings are worth more than you getting your music done. He is spilling his emotional reaction to what I said on to you and making you feel bad. This is what I was talking about to him when this all started except that now I'm Chris H and there's another grudge to live with. There is accountability on both sides for this situation.
On 2013-07-03, at 11:48 AM, Jess Hart wrote:
It is actually very easy to determine a quantitative amount for this trade as I have already spent all of the time compiling all of the dates that I worked as you can see in the attached. I would also remind you that you initially suggested that my work would be worth $100 a day and that when we had our final discussion about my work in the studio you had offered to pay me financially instead of through studio time, of which you agreed I had at least one and a half month time in the studio.
If I was renting the studio from you for a week without your presence it would be $1000. Do you really believe that 50 sessions and over a year of work is worth only one week in the studio?
As such, I really cannot accept any less than $3000 although I still believe I deserve closer to $5000. I have attached a copy of the original invoice with the date modified to reflect a month from now. If you disagree that my time at the studio was worth less than $3000 I will have to get a second opinion from WorkBC.
The thing that gets me the most here is your complete lack of accountability with regard to this situation. Once again, I would remind you that this arrangement was between the two of us exclusively, so I don’t really care if you get money from Matt, Edwin, Doug Deep, Getaway Van, Farmer’s in Arms or Susan as long as I am compensated for my work.
I hope you are doing well and are maintaining your musical creativity. I was saddened by the tone of your communication and I'm trying to maintain some objectivity dispute what I feel is a mean spirited start. $100 every visit really? I was thinking about the spirit of our original agreement to exchange efforts to our mutual advantage. I thought of it as an artistically interesting project because I think your music shows promise. I was interested in it as a producer. I accepted your time here thinking I was sharing my work space with you to your advantage and comfort.(there was always something to smoke.) I didn't need most of the help and I would never of hired anyone for it. I notice there was a "paid" marked on your invoice. That was because we didn't ever think of that data recovery phase to be part of an artistic exchange and I think you weren't paid enough there if my artistic goodwill isn't involved. I feel you are owed more money for that time and I will think about it in a different light now and get back to you about that shortly.
We never had a direct falling out so your discomfort in working with me comes from a place of relationship with Nir. I had a momentary loss of patience with the vindictive tone that Nir had around Chris, the festival and how it impacted the film festival work Tamar was wanting to do. I thought he was being inconsiderate and selfish towards her. I guess I made the mistake of thinking of you guys as having individual relationships with me. I also think you are loosing a good musical opportunity for the same reason. Having said that I will now have to add the work I did with Nir into the contents of our exchange. I will get back to you about all this soon. I have to give it more thought.
Matt's album has come a long way. I'm playing live now and we will be playing an opening set in Vancouver on the 15th of August at Venue for a few labels and the press. We think the show will be sold out....600 or so. We are excited! You will of course have credits on the album ..............
I have brothers and sisters .......we yell at each other and speak our minds all the time. I'm sorry that this has cost a friendship.
Jess Hart <XXXXX@XXXXXX.XXX>
I certainly understand your disappointment, as I felt the same way when you came to our house to throw away our friendship without a second thought. More so, I am bothered that you never came to apologize or put things right, because you simply do not care… there is nothing else in it for you.
“I didn't need most of the help and I would never of hired anyone for it.” Really? That may be true, but without my help you would still be sitting on Matt’s/ Suzanne’s projects now.
I want to make perfectly clear that this arrangement is having nothing to do with Nir or any outside parties. I worked 50 sessions at the studio for which I was expecting to receive an equal amount of days in the studio or a payment of equivalent value.
We do have our independent relationship, but I guess you can say I am having a momentary loss of patience regarding your vindictiveness towards Nir in this situation. Furthermore, my reservations towards recording my project at the studio are stemming less from a place of personal relationship than business logic. I don’t feel secure that I will ever get access to a month and a half of un-interrupted production at the studio. I need a professional environment with a positive atmosphere where I can trust that the equipment and facilities will be running smoothly and unfortunately I can’t trust the studio in this regard. Especially when I am not a paid engineer there… seriously.
Sorry to be harsh, but I think that your curt judgments have led you here. If I am lashing out it is because I really valued our relationship and friendship and I am disappointed with the outcome. I consider Nir and Tamar my BC family and before this you were actually included in that group which is why it is coming to such a shock and disappointment to me as well as you!
That being said, I do want to work out an agreement that we both think of as fair. I know that I put many hours of time and energy into the work that I did at the studio and that it was beneficial to the projects at hand.
I am sincerely XXXXX XXXXX hear that Matt’s project is taking off. It was great working on the material and I think he is super talented and will go really far. Also glad that you are getting back to the bass! I hope you guys are enjoying the summer days and looking forward to your thoughts.
On Wed, Jun 26, 2013 at 11:04 PM, Ray Fulber <XXXXX@XXXXXX.XXX> wrote:
I thought a lot about this sad situation we're in here. Because we were talking about an artistic trade we will never be able to come up with an agreeable monetary value. I am going to give you $1000 (Matt is contributing to this) and leave the door open to help your music in some artistic way that doesn't bump your sensibilities, if that's possible. I disagree with with a lot of people that I don't dislike. I think you are a talented artist and I hope you get to your music.
Date: August 15, 2013 10:29:31 AM PDT
Some time has passed. Maybe some of the passion has let up and logic is entering ....... I still would record some of your material. We entered into a trade. Matt's album is being mastered and turned out at a high level that industry people are impressed with. I think you are a good artist. Artists have a responsibility to personally give their art the highest priority in their lives.
hope this finds you well
This is copied from our correspondence The $ amount of value per day I ever considered was for time spent organizing some data