I liked this from the very groovy Norman Records:
OK all you read about is doom and gloom for physical sales and I won’t deny it’s true. Physical sales are spiralling downwards and the quantities of records ( by records I mean the physical formats…) being sold these days is pitiful to what it what it was say 10 years ago. BUT major labels have reported an increase in profits over the last year. They’ve diversified into other areas and aren’t just focusing on physical sales. Legal downloads aren’t really plugging the gap but things like merchandise, touring and ringtones (oh why oh why) and helping things turn around. So we’re clearly in a state of transformation but where on earth will it take us?? What do you think??
That’s all well and good for the majors but how on earth is the indie label gonna cope? is it gonna be small runs of 200 7?’s and 50 CDR’s that keep them alive? I hope Ninja Tune don’t mind this but this is nicked from the back of a promo CD for the last Cinematic Orchestra album and I thought it was quite pertinent.
“Before you copy, burn or upload these recordings, please take a moment to think about what you’re doing and what you’re not doing. You are not “sticking it to the man”. You are not “striking a blow against outdated copyright laws.” You are not “liberating content from the corporations”. Nor are you “promoting our recordings for us.”
You are making it much harder for the musicians in Cinematic Orchestra to make anything like a living wage for creating the music which is good enough to give friends and associates. You are making it harder for an independent label like Ninja Tune to stay in Business (We’re not trying to rip anyone off, so don’t pretend we are- we split all our profits 50/50 with our artists and we put out music we believe in rather than music we just think will make the most money).
By all means pirate the latest corporate spew from major central. But don’t pretend it’s the same thing as copying this. Because, one day, when we’re all gone and all that’s left is two or three giant multinational conglomerates putting out lowest- common- denominator bollocks, you’ll wish you hadn’t- No Clicking…”
I can see their just being a couple of majors left and aside from that I’m not sure what else will survive. Despite the utter shite and extra toss brought on by the myspace generation it has presented young artists with a platform to promote their music and lots of ‘em are releasing their own records on their own labels. Quality aside this has to be a good thing (though you won’t get me to say that when I’ve got 10 of ‘em to review in a row….) So where are we gonna go?
Personally I think physical sales will be about for a while but over the next couple of years there will be some massive casualties of large labels, shops, distros etc… Rest assured we’re still battling on and you can also be guaranted that Norman won’t start selling downloads cos we think they’re shite.