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The million-dollar headliners, the Outkast reunions, the Ferris wheels

Why the Summer Music Festival Bubble is About to Burst.
posted by naju on Aug 5, 2014 - 44 comments

"Gotta keep the chickens fed,"

Mr. Muthafuckin' eXquire's Music Biz Misadventures
posted by valkane on Jun 23, 2014 - 7 comments

The Devaluation Myth

Tim Quirk, former singer for Too Much Joy and now Head of Global Content Programming at Google Play, gave a speech at the 2013 Future of Music Summit: "[Y]ou can't devalue music. It's impossible. Songs are not worth 99 cents and albums are not worth precisely $9.99." [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine on Nov 5, 2013 - 39 comments

"The idea of selling out is only understandable to people of privilege."

How Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy learned to grow up and start firing his friends.
posted by Kitteh on Aug 13, 2013 - 129 comments

"...the ways in which musicians are screwed have changed qualitatively, from individualized swindles to systemic ones."

"The "Tugboat" 7" single, Galaxie 500's very first release, cost us $980.22 for 1,000 copies-- including shipping! (Naomi kept the receipts)-- or 98 cents each. I no longer remember what we sold them for, but obviously it was easy to turn at least a couple bucks' profit on each. Which means we earned more from every one of those 7"s we sold than from the song's recent 13,760 plays on Pandora and Spotify. Here's yet another way to look at it: Pressing 1,000 singles in 1988 gave us the earning potential of more than 13 million streams in 2012."
Making Cents: Damon Krukowski of Galaxie 500 and Damon & Naomi breaks down the meager royalties currently being paid out to bands by streaming services and explains what the music business' headlong quest for capital means for artists today. [more inside]
posted by anazgnos on Nov 15, 2012 - 85 comments

On Snuggies and Business Models

"Now is a better time to be a musician, or a fan of music, than any other time in all of human history." Last Friday, the NPR Planet Money podcast featured musician Jonathan Coulton, whose online success prompted one host to compare the man (or his brand) to the blanket-with-arms Snuggie, i.e. "we didn't know we wanted it, and then all of a sudden we did." Coulton responds with his own thoughts on new business models for musicians in the Internet/file-sharing age.
posted by mrgrimm on May 26, 2011 - 48 comments

Working against the market consensus can be a winning strategy.

Everything Popular Is Wrong. Stefan Goldmann on the state of electronic music. [more inside]
posted by mkb on Apr 14, 2011 - 62 comments

It's raining bytes

As Amazon and the RIAA go head to head over the Amazon Cloud Player (esentially Dropbox with streaming) it seems like a good time to recap the turbulent history of the humble MP3, upender of the music industry business model.
posted by Artw on Apr 4, 2011 - 83 comments

you are beautiful.

i have let paypal go. old-fashioned wheezy paranoid beast. and i can’t find a simple enough new solution. so, all music is pay-it-forward. [more inside]
posted by tapesonthefloor on May 18, 2010 - 36 comments

California Schemin'

Your dreams of rapping superstardom are stymied by your Scottish sound, so what do you do? Simple: reinvent yourself as a West Coast wild boy, with American accent and history to match. Keeping it real might be murder, but even when it all falls apart, at least you got to tour with Eminem and D12 – and you can salvage something by writing a book about it all.
posted by Len on Apr 18, 2010 - 67 comments

Creatively Heinous

Toronto band Fucked Up was everywhere at the South By Southwest music festival this year--playing at official and unofficial showcases, even once on the street, but often at unofficial massive advertising areas by, say, Pepsi or Levis. Some might think: How can a hardcore band justify their position in these marketing schemes? The answer, posted on the band blog by Mike the Guitarist, is simply titled: SXSW WHY? [more inside]
posted by Potomac Avenue on Mar 26, 2010 - 47 comments

then we were niggy's band

Saul Williams releases his album with several payment options: $0.00 gets you 192k mp3s, and 5 bucks buys your choice of 192k or 300k mp3s, or FLAC. All DRM free of course. Trent Reznor, who was recently sighted complaining about the insane prices for his last album in new zealand, is to blame. Need a taster? Saul and Trent have leaked a track on pirate bay.
posted by fleetmouse on Oct 29, 2007 - 17 comments

Step 1: Unyoke the Artists

Five ways the music industry can prevent its own demise.
posted by Terminal Verbosity on Oct 18, 2007 - 52 comments

Now Ashlee Simpson... she's real.

Before the Music Dies Documentary of the current state of the music industry now on DVD. Perhaps not much we don't know, but certainly some insight and perspective by those entrenched. And it's got a nice marketing technique to it. Reminds me of the Wilco doc screenings I attended in Brooklyn warehouses.
posted by adamms222 on Feb 16, 2007 - 31 comments

Ya'll want a single? **** That!

A Korn video that definately gets the message across about the music industry. (direct link to windows media, nsfw i believe)
posted by spidre on Mar 13, 2004 - 49 comments

What busking could teach the music industry

What busking could teach the music industry An intelligent essay on how the music industry should adapt to the new digital realities, drawn from the author's experiences as a street (well, subway) musician. No one who could learn from it will read it, of course.
posted by mojohand on Jan 8, 2004 - 41 comments

From the music sheet to the MP3

From Sheet Music to MP3: Music through the 20th Century Among the current notices of legal online music stores finally coming of age across the 'Net, this is a lengthy but quite deep and interesting analysis (deepest I've seen so far) on how the music industry ended up being what it is today, how "pop" music came to be, and more. If anything, it shows how corporate greed and shady business practices are far from being a recent happening in the industry everybody loves to hate. The study ends with the state of the industry circa 1999, but that makes it no less valuable.
posted by betobeto on May 22, 2003 - 2 comments

Semi-Legal Music Piracy Defenses

The NY Times reports that music companies are considering some new anti-piracy measures of questionable legality. The ideas include a program to lock up user's computers, another to find and delete illegally downloaded files, and what amounts to a DoS attack on user's computers. There are some supporters of these possibly extralegal measures. Representative Howard Berman (D-CA) introduced a bill last year to provide the music industry with a "safe harbor from liability" when pursuing P2P traders. Should media companies be allowed to operate outside the law in their efforts to stop illegal downloads of their music?
posted by punishinglemur on May 3, 2003 - 23 comments

WMC 2003

The 2003 Winter Music Conference is now one month away. During the conference you will be able to attend the main conference, the 2003 DanceStar USA awards show, the huge ULTRA 5 Music Festival, and countless other parties during the week. Everyone influential having anything to do with dance music will be there for 5 days of endless pool parties, late night clubbing, networking, and general debauchery. If you need to know what will be going on, you should already be on the Miami Master List, the definitive guide.
posted by cmicali on Feb 17, 2003 - 12 comments

Hating Hilary.

Hating Hilary. We've certainly heard a bit from Hilary Rosen, CEO of the RIAA. Love her, hate her or hate her more, this particular interview reveals (to me at least) a very different Hilary, a woman who is perhaps not the beast that her bosses expect her to be and the immovable technophobic distribution system and business model she represents forces her to be.

In fact, Rosen tried to steer the labels toward the online future long before they saw it coming. In the mid-'90s, Rosen brought [Esther] Dyson to a conference of music executives to brief them on how technology would transform their business. Dyson described for them the inevitability of digital delivery, an eventuality Rosen says she had begun to understand but wanted her bosses to hear from an outsider. But as Dyson spoke, the label executives became defensive, then furious. By all accounts, the meeting devolved into a shouting match.

the picture of her with an iPod says it all

"I finally convince the idiot record companies that they have to offer a product to compete with pirates, and now the publishers won't make a deal," she said, throwing up her hands. priceless.
posted by 11235813 on Jan 23, 2003 - 39 comments

Michael Jackson: the music industry is racist.

Michael Jackson: the music industry is racist.
The erstwhile Agent M made some interesting claims about the record industry as a whole while in the midst of a dispute with his record label, Sony. He mentioned such paupers as Little Richard, Mariah Carey and Sammy Davis, Jr. as "vistims of the industry," and singled out Sony Music chairman Tommy Mottola. In other news, Al Sharpton and Johnny Cochran have formed a coalition to investigate financial profiteering off black recording artists.
posted by me3dia on Jul 8, 2002 - 43 comments

The anti-Napster or Napster's future?...

The anti-Napster or Napster's future?... File sharing as perceived by the music industry. I wonder if there isn't a deal with Napster already. But what are they going to do with all the Napster clones?
posted by talos on Apr 2, 2001 - 15 comments

Say you want a revolution?

Say you want a revolution? Well you know, we all want to change the world..
posted by ZachsMind on Jul 25, 2000 - 3 comments

my.MP3.com Loses to RIAA

my.MP3.com Loses to RIAA In case you didn't see it on Slashdot and everywhere else.
posted by fil! on Apr 28, 2000 - 7 comments

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