John Lefebvre - Psalngs

John Lefebvre - Psalngs

December 18, 2008 13:10 ET

29 Songs on Psalngs for Free Download at

Downloading in an Uplifting Fashion

Songwriter gives the gift of song, one megabyte at a time

SALT SPRING ISLAND, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 18, 2008) -

Music, like books and great recipes, should never be sentenced to the agony of the shelf. Instead, music belongs with the listener, floating on the air it moves where it can capture you but you can never quite capture it. That music should be liberated from the tyranny of the shelf is a credo which songwriter John Lefebvre lives. That's why he made the twenty-nine songs on Psalngs, the double album he released this week, available for free on his website

"It's art, not a business deal," states the musician from his Salt Spring Island home. "I'm fortunate that I don't have to repay an avaricious record company's investment. For me the job was done when the record was done. The rest is letting people enjoy it if they want to."

Lefebvre cites Prince as a prime example of letting music run free. Prince gave away one million copies of his CD away in the morning newspaper. After that, he filled Wembley Stadium for several nights running, which translated into about a half million tickets sold. Lefebvre figures the musician sold over $30,000,000 worth of tickets in the deal by not charging for one of those albums.

"In the old days if you wanted to make money as a musician you played live in a concert hall or a saloon. Then came record companies and live performance became a loss leader to sell records. But sell them for whom? The artist got about 7%. Now, with the advent of the Internet, recorded music has a diminished value. And I think it's getting back to the traditional paradigm; (if) you want to make money with music, go out and play. Like my friend said, 'The Internet cuts out the people in the food chain that add the least value.'"

That the music on Psalngs is valuable was proven when producer Brian Ahern (Emmylou Harris, George Jones) chose to work with the project. Appreciative of the songs' honesty and drive, Ahern brought in a team of the most seasoned musicians in music to do them justice. These veterans agreed with Lefebvre's idealism. "Most of them thought the whole (free download) model was a great approach. But hey, they're musicians and love to actually play. Brian, my producer encouraged the approach as a way to 'get it out there.'"

While Lefebvre fondly remembers rushing down to Glenn's music in his Calgary hometown to pick up a new 45 rpm from the Kinks or Stones, his experiences with downloading are equally pleasurable. "I remember being amazed that I could pick up stuff that I loved but lost eons ago. For example, all 45's became virtually useless. But now I could have them back. I don't hear people discuss this angle much but most of what I ever downloaded was stuff I used to own on vinyl or tape, which I think most people would agree doesn't particularly offend the ethic."

And neither does making songs available to people who want to enjoy them. Thus, for Lefebvre, the success of Psalngs will not be measured by sales. "It's a total and complete success every time someone tells me their favorite song from the album. I guess I think of it more like a painting. I feel very sorry for painters. They have to give up their stuff. That would break my heart. Musicians have it way better. You can take the record but you can never take away the song."

For free downloads visit

Contact Information

  • For interviews with John Lefebvre contact:
    Lorraine Wilson
    (604) 351-9205