Rightly Rewarding Wilco

The other day I held Wilco up as exemplars of how to treat online fans. As you’ll recall, they sent out a swell little email pointing out how nice they are to their online fans despite advice to the contrary. They asked that in return the fans buy their new record, Sky Blue Sky, the week of its release. The result?

We just wanted to take a moment here from mobile HQ (aka the bus) to thank you for heeding the call and supporting the band in overwhelming numbers. The result? Our biggest week ever… #4 on the US Charts, #7 in Norway, #9 in Canada and top 40 in Sweden, Germany, Spain, Ireland and the UK. Bravo to you all… and great thanks from the band (who are sleeping now after a great show in Berlin last night).

To show our gratitude, beginning today, we’re making more content available via the Enhanced CD… this time a free download of the studio recording of the aptly named “The Thanks I Get”. Many of you will know this track from hearing it live or in the Sunken Treasure DVD. This particular version was recorded at the loft during the sessions for SBS. [...]

(from a Wilco HQ email sent out Friday).

See? Giving things away and handling album leaks without hissy fits doesn’t necessarily mean death at the record store. It’s all about the relationship — Wilco trust their fans, they’re nice to them, and when they ask a favor, they’re rewarded. As it should be.

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