New Album, New Site
Hello Daniel, My Old Friend
Ok, I admit, Daniel and I have never met face-to-face so I can’t really say that we’re old friends but I have worked with him since 2009 and he seems like a really nice guy. The first time we worked together was when he released his self-titled album and needed a new site to promote it. I designed a site based on the artwork from his album and had it connected to a custom CMS so he could make updates to certain content.
For his next two albums, Easy Livin’ (2011) and Ocean Wide (2013), the structure of the site stayed relatively unchanged but the design was updated to match the albums’ artwork.
A Fresh New Site
Daniel was releasing a new album, I Am Your Man, and was looking to revamp his site. We discussed his current site and all the things that could be improved. The framework of his site was almost 6 years old so I recommended that we create a new site rather than just re-skinning the current site as we had done for the previous two albums.
- Move the site to a modern platform.
- Simplify the navigation – the current site had a lot of pages that users rarely visited.
- Make the site responsive (i.e. optimal for all screen sizes).
- Update the audio player to one that works on all mobile devices as the old one was done in Flash.
- Allow users to purchase the new album with the potential to add more products in the future.
- Utilize social media to provide some of the content for the site rather than having to updating both (e.g. pull photos from Instagram, include his Twitter feed).
Daniel was releasing the album on his own label and his budget for the website was tight. Because of this I recommended that we build it on Squarespace since it offered everything we required and I could customize one of their templates as needed.
Typically I would sketch some ideas and create wireframes but because of the tight deadline and budget I decided to forgo these steps in order to save time and money. I had taken several notes based on our conversations and was confident that I could proceed directly to the build. It was also a huge benefit that we were building the site using a template and that Daniel trusted me completely with the design and customization.
So I built it and he loved it. It was that simple. Sometimes there’s no need to over-complicate the process.
Although the turnaround was short and we skipped some of the typical steps in the design process, the finished product turned out great. We were able to accomplish all the goals we had set and Daniel is now selling his new album on his site. Give it a listen and buy the album if you like what you hear. I think it’ll get your toes a tappin’.