[Project Approved] Ferg's IMAGINARY BIG BAND - December 2021

Hi all

This is an application for funding under the NxM Projects program.

The purpose of the application is to fund the recording of an LP by The Imaginary Big Band. This LP will be released both as an audio NFT on the Mintbase NxM store, and also as a digital release. A subsequent physical release may also be made.


Ferg’s Imaginary Big Band is a 20+ piece big band based in Leeds, UK. The band consists mainly of a group of jazz trained musicians graduated from the Leeds Conservatoire. The band operates out of the Tight Lines collective.

The band has played a number of gigs in Leeds over the last three years, which have a reputation for both the dynamic sound & performance of the band, and raucous audience participation.

The sets consist of a mix of covers and original compositions, all arranged for a 20+ piece big band. Sun Ra is a big influence, along with Duke Ellington.

"Official Blurb"

Ferg’s Imaginary Big Band are a 22+ piece semi-fictional noise machine who are part of the burgeoning left-field independent Leeds based record label, Tight Lines.

Initially inspired by the cosmic jazz legend and musician/band leader Sun Ra, Ferg’s Imaginary Big Band is a semi-fictional large ensemble whose primary aim is to bring big band music kicking and screaming into the 22nd century.

The IBB play rowdy and always huge sounding arrangements of an incredibly diverse selection of tunes from composers including Duke Ellington, Sun Ra, The Rajasthan Express, Art Ensemble Of Chicago alongside a growing pad of original music composed by Fergus and other members of the group.

Fergus Quill and his band are on a mission to make Britain weird again.

The Project

The economics of running nearly all professional big bands are horrific. The IBB is no exception, and most gigs rely on the favour bank, the bravura of a bold promoter, a sympathetic venue, and most fundamentally - the willingness of the participants to give up their time [rehearsals & performance] for something that they believe is worth doing.

Equally, recording a big band can be a logistical and financial challenge. Most participants are contributing on an expenses only basis, however some additional requirement costs are unavoidable:

The proposal for funding is therefore for the following:

Studio time - Offered at a vastly discounted rate of £100 per day - 3 days at £300

Secondary engineer - £100 total

Supplementary equipment hire - [percussion rig, piano tuning, extra microphone rental, tape & printing] - £150

Musician expenses [food, travel, portage] - £150

Total £700 - $930 [GBP/USD 1.33 Nov 26th]

The end result will be a mastered digital LP which will then be minted as an Audio NFT. The inherent nature of a big band results in a lot of costs and a lot of splits on any income. However, this is a perfect way to demonstrate the multiple wallet splits functionality on Mintbase, with all beneficiaries of any sales being programmed into the token at minting.

The end result should see up to 30 different NEAR wallets minted into the audio NFT.

Initially, I will be acting as liaison between NxM and the project at the proposal stage, but three key members of the band will be asked to join NxM as part of the project liaison going forward, and taking part in other NxM initiatives.

The date for recording is sometime in December 2021 - tbc.

We would like to make a request for 50% of the funding as an advance.

The wallet for receiving the funds for the project is most likely to be fqmusic.near, but it can also be a dedicated wallet for the project.


Ferg’s Imaginary Big Band on Facebook:

Fergus Quill Music


Thanks @zeitwarp for this proposal. I’m a big fan of Ferg’s work and I think this would be a fantastic project to fund via NxM. We’d initially suggested a cap of $500 for funding projects and I see your budget at almost 1K. I think we also discussed the idea of expanding the cap, but I’m not sure if its fair to the other projects being proposed to have one exception. Maybe we can look at this as a two-part proposal, where it’s spread across two months and funded that way? This could help allow more proposals to be approved this month. Any thoughts from @nxm council on this?

1 Like

Yep…as u say i did ask for some clarification beforehand about the $500 cap…as we had been working on the basis that “nxm projects” would come in with the same budget as “nxm events”…based on the discussion in the community call a few weeks back (think it was #17…mid November?)…so the $500 did catch us a bit off balance after $1000 was published for “events”

Nonetheless…appreciate the point on fairness…and on sticking to the published criteria…so yes - with my council hat on - a two month budget makes sense…and will also encourage greater integration with NxM if Tight Lines want to look at proposals for other projects/events in January…

From the perspective of the project…2 months does not cause any great difficulty as there is enough reputational collateral to reassure all participants…and 50/50 over December/January can be managed…but it would still require 50% in advance as before…which arithmetically would represent 100% of December’s allocation…if that’s acceptable ?..


@vandal @chloe @Grace


Seems fine to ma. Having it split between two months if it needs to stay in budget.


Hey @zeitwarp We’re happy to announce that your project has been approved to receive funding under December’s Projects stream. Congrats on behalf of the NxM Council @chloe @Grace and myself :partying_face:

hey all

thinking a bit more about this…from a guild-wide perspective…and again with my council hat on…

going forward i think that it makes sense to consider applications/proposals from one collective / geographical group - such as Tight Lines - as a single proposal only…

so for example if one member of TL - or another similar collective/geographic group of individuals - makes a proposal…then another can’t for the same month…

thoughts @vandal @chloe @Grace

shall we adopt as a guideline for future events/projects ?


I think this is a good set of guidelines for NxM to adopt. I do hope that when we take our next steps and grow we will be able to fund even more projects and event some of the guilds/DAOs in the ecosystem. One positive step at a time!


Seems reasonable to adopt this as a guideline.


ok done, @vandal…shall we work it into the guidelines for events & projects going forward?

1 Like

Yes let’s do that. I’ll make an edit to to the current guide once things clear next week! I also need to provide more instructions on how to submit proposals.

1 Like

Hey @zeitwarp can you drop an update in the comments on the project. I know we spoke about it in the chat, but for the sake of our December report it would be great to have an update here on the post! Thanks!

Hi @vandal [@chloe @Grace @Monish016 @Paul ]
As reported in the community call, the project has been heavily delayed by Covid infections - principally to Ferg himself - which then ran into the Christmas break.
Realistically, nothing is going to happen until after New Year.
To reflect the hiatus, no application has been made to the DAO for the approved funding…however the intention is to apply for December prior to the next set of [January] proposals are approved, and then apply for the second month funding once we have some progress in January.
All subject to further covid restrictions etc.
Let me know what you all think


Thanks @zeitwarp! Yes, that seems reasonable to me given the situation and the commitment from NxM to this project.


Hey @zeitwarp we wanted to let you know that the 2nd half of the funds allocated for this project have been approved for this month. Once things are rolling feel free to submit your proposal to the DAO!


Ok @Vandal great, thnx.

Ferg is back in the swing of things and we will make the applications this week.

thnx NxM :musical_note:


The studio is booked for Feb 22nd - 24th inclusive [three days] as above.
Applying to the DAO for the first half of funds - again as above- thnx


The band had it’s first full 20+ musicians rehearsal for the recording session in Leeds on Monday 24th Jan.

(This is a photo from another rehearsal session in autumn 2021…as the photos on Monday were taken with a film camera…and waiting for development…)


Update: @NxMCouncil [not sure if this works - so adding @Paul @Monish016 ]

So, the three day recording session was completed yesterday evening and everything is in the digital can.

A photographer was there to record the event on analogue film…so when it is developed we will have some shots to post.

Next step mastering…


Partial band photo from the last rehearsal on Monday 21st


This is awesome! Oh the @NxM should work like this if I’m not mistaken. Also it’s currently just myself, you @zeitwarp along with @chloe and @Grace would be good to remove us and add @Paul & @Monish016