By definition, a maverick is a nonconformist. When taking in the circuitous backstory of alt-country outfit The Mavericks, the quartet’s voyage fits neatly into their narrative, starting out with their origins playing punk clubs in the very un-country music environs of Miami to the most recent decision to launch their own Mono Mundo Recordings imprint with the release of “Brand New Day,” the band’s ninth studio album.
Following in the footsteps of fellow iconoclast Lucinda Williams, the quartet is embracing a DIY approach toward recorded music at a time when the imploding music industry is staking its revenue stream in downloaded songs and a phasing out of the CD format. Despite this reality, front man Raul Malo feels it was important for his band to strike out down this entrepreneurial path.
“It’s a better business model for artists like us,” he said in a recent phone interview in advance of the band’s Nov. 16 show at the Charleston Music Hall. “Artists who have a following and can sell X number of records and aren’t necessarily playing the mainstream country radio game. That’s why you see artists like Lucinda, Jason Isbell and The Mavericks hooking up with (music distributor) Thirty Tigers. It’s a great place to be, they’re great people.
“I would say for years to deaf ears that people are still buying records. My theory is that if we make music valuable to people again and make it worth something other than being a free download, which you offer as well, people will buy it. The reality is that we need those because you want people to have your material in whatever format or contraption they have. I see it with my kids. If they get all the stuff they want for free, they still go out and see a movie, even though they’ve already seen it on their (device).”
For “Brand New Day,” the Mavericks (Malo,…