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Lessons Learned From A Fan-Supported DIY Band | Brian Mazzaferri of I Fight Dragons

You’re a DIY musician who's tired of the major label system… We feel your pain.

Or maybe you do want to get signed – in which case you should pay close attention.

Brian Mazzaferri and his band I Fight Dragons have been on both sides of the major label fence, and they've seen firsthand how hard it is for artists to get their work out there without being tied down by a label.

But, there’s good news as well.

There are methods that will allow you to keep your independence while still getting your music heard by millions of people all over the world!

Listen now to hear Brian Mazzaferri of I Fight Dragon describe how you can use creative techniques to keep your band afloat and make music that your fans will love, without paying out of pocket!

What you’ll learn:

  • How the 1,000 true fans model has become more viable over the past decade
  • Why having the right manager (not just a manager) is important to your career
  • How I Fight Dragons was able to negotiate out of a major label deal
  • What opportunity cost is and how it affects your career
  • How to use creative fundraising techniques for your band
  • Why unique, limited edition collectibles are a value-add for your fans
  • Why targeting fans of big bands isn’t the right way to grow your fanbase
  • What you can do to adapt Patreon to your needs
  • Why you need to shift from what you want to what your fans want
  • How hustling grows your fanbase

Listen now!

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Find I Fight Dragons online

I Fight Dragons website

I Fight Dragons Patreon

Get I Fight Dragons’ latest album for free!

Cyber PR article about 1,000 true fans



 – Cool Is Just a Number (EP, 2009)

 – Welcome to the Breakdown (EP, 2010)

 – Kaboom! (2011)

 – Project Atma (Kickstarter campaign)

 – The Near Future (2014)

 – Canon Eyes (2019)

 – Side Quest (fall 2021)


Mentioned songs

 – “I Fight Ganon”

 – “It’s Not Me It’s You”



Alive In Barcelona

Pinnacle Pro Sound


Facebook Group

Bandhive on Facebook







Contact us!

[email protected]


Artists and Music


Chiptune (genre)

The Legend of Zelda theme

MC Lars

Jonathan Coulton

MC Chris


 – “Handlebars”

Cobra Starship


Travie McCoy


John Mayer


Justin Bieber


The Offspring

Linkin Park

Bring Me The Horizon


Amanda Palmer

Fountains of Wayne

Adam Schlesinger


The Maine


Companies, Venues, and Gear






The Viper Room

Atlantic Records

Photo Finish Records

The Knitting Factory




Grou.ps (no longer exists)





Gave Apodaca

J.J. Italiano (no active website)

Matt Mahaffey

Seth Godin


Episode Transcript (automatic – excuse errors)