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i nearly did a post like this tearing him apart but decided against it.
or is the whole, 'bands don't get time to develop nowadays' one of the biggest fallacies when it comes to this argument.
'oh yeah, well...y'know...the beatles only really probably sold about two records the first time out. i mean, in todays atmosphere, they'd probably just get dropped and never make music again y'know? bands need to be given time'
does anyone actually think this is a valid argument?
most of the 'breakthrough' acts of the past decade were bands who'd done things under one guise, changed their name and had a whole new appreciation for things (Snowfield: Editors, Fear of Flying: White Lies, Parva: Kaiser Chiefs, etc). having said that, I saw various different iterations of Florence & the Machine, some of which sounded more like The Kills, before she eventually found a sound labels / the media were interested in.
rather than acts not developing, I think it's the media (and some fans) who're too quick to write acts off, with lots of tossed off "they've been around for ages", as if the idea of learning and mastering your craft is such a bad thing. see also: http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/books/article4969415.ece
"they've been around for ages" dismissal ties in with what you were on about last week with the neophilia thing
yep, it's my big bugbear at the moment.
relatedly, see also: trying to find investors for DiS entering its 11th year vs new 'start-ups' with no audience raising millions. i might start a start-up...
then buy DIS off yourself.
best of both worlds
There are an infinite number of new bands available, so it's easy to dispose of one that doesn't quite fit your taste. Devaluation of musical endeavour?
so much music available that yes there is reduced loyalty to singular bands, so a poor debut can kind of kill off a band whereas they used to maybe get another album to sort it out (see Radiohead)
It is a sad side effect, but on the other hand so much music readily available. I think McGee puts the least competant anti piracy argument together I've ever seen, completely missing any salient issues. I have huge issues with a lot of people's odd entitlement to free music, this music was made by people's hard labour and you think you have the right not to enjoy it without paying? Bizarre.
The music industry has largely only itself to blame for being so slow on the uptake and so catastrophic in it's responce. Music will live on just fine should the big labels go down.
to be fair
expose the fact that McGee not only is completely ourt of touch with how the music industy really operates in 2011, but he also has not a scooby about the corporate world of M&A/ corporate finance. And why should he? But he certainly shouldn't try to write about them.
on a vaguely related note, i have plans afoot to resurrect the DiS label. just set-up a Facebook page for anyone who'd like to be first to find out what's occurring (won't be a little while yet) http://www.facebook.com/DrownedinSoundRecordings
Good work, I'll keep an eye out.
the author is still trotting the whole "musicians make loads from touring!" and "they don't need record labels!" (with reference to, surprise surprise, Amanda Palmer) lines, which are as much a load of silly talk as what McGee is throwing out.
he's a raving relic who should be quiet to save himself further embarassment.
Does he still write for the Guardian, or have even they given up on him?
We can't bust heads like we used to, but we have our ways. One trick is to tell them stories that don't go anywhere...
he was just in the right position to make money off them from you.
He's a twat. He was relevant 20 years ago as he was in that position, but these days he talks like someone who thinks they know what is going on and is actually clueless.
Both articles are stupid, but McGee looses easily.
and was working in a totally different era. but I digress...
none of the 'touring makes money' arguments hold up when you consider how much needs to be investment in a band's touring before they begin making money from touring. few acts below Shepherd's Bush Empire level (or Scala level in several major cities) are making much of a living from music, and a label is very likely covering the short-fall.
however, this is about businesses, not individual bands, and companies involved in live are making big profits, they're just not really re-investing them in their future...
Livenation signed Nickleback for three whole albums
Jeniferever's 'Choose A Bright Morning'
Youthmovies 'Good Nature'
Personally, I love these albums.
WINK WINK WINK.
(i love you)
I agree with his viewpoint.I think his way of presenting it didn't do it any favours... (the whole being Alan McGee thing made me want to disagree on principle)
The more money from touring argument is, to my mind disingenuous-
Even if in some cases it might be true that an artist may make more money from playing live.
It misses out the fact that bands previously could make money by selling just records and didn't have to uproot their entire lives for however long their tour lasts just to get paid. Now, because of illegal downloading they don't have that option. -
Why should someone taking music for free (A.K.A stealing) have the ability to justify their behaviour by telling the artist that if they want to get paid for this thing they just took they'll have to play live, whether they want to or not?
What I'd like to see is (and this IS crazy) is bands suing their record companies for loss of earnings caused by them not doing enough to stop illegal downloading. - has anyone done this?
ah, ye olde "but Kate Bush never toured" argument. it's one that i've constantly mentioned. also, things which are big in the charts don't sell very many tickets, as people like the song, not the artist. this has damaged the commerce end of the industry far more than piracy. youtube has probably caused more disruption and damage than Napster ever did (although, in theory it opened pandora's box, which is a whole other matter)
the labels could have bought Napster. they could have set-up iTunes themselves. they could even have turned 'tour support' into an investment in band's live careers but alas, they didn't.
ad the stuff about songs which are big in the charts not selling many tickets etc etc? Just sounds interesting, can you link any articles?
you just need to look at some of the biggest chart acts and compare the size of venues they're playing to their record sales. for instance, i remember James Morrison not selling out Koko a few years back when he had a massive hit. And James Blake should, in theory, be playing somewhere the size of Wembley Arena but doesn't.
also, i wrote this which is vaguely relevant to all this a while back http://seaninsound.tumblr.com/post/1136577707/artists-make-more-money-in-file-sharing-age-than-before
Not necessarily true. A massive amount of chart pop/r'n'b acts who you wouldn't expect to tour in the traditional sense that an indie band would are doing so on a regular basis, they just play bigger venues with fewer dates.
Is the actually any evidence that the live music industry has been helped by illegal downloading?
is as crushingly naive as the Alan McGee one.
at Great Escape last year http://www.prsformusic.com/aboutus/press/latestpressreleases/Pages/Livemusiccontinuestooutperform.aspx
and if memory serves in this video http://vimeo.com/10840403
am sure i found something else recently that had some great stats but forgot to blog it
that I don't get. Surely the huge growth in live music over the last decade is due to more than everyone getting albums for free and wanting something else to spend their money on?
although yeah, there isn't really any evidence, I'd say there was more evidence that the growth in live music WASN'T due to downloading, though.
which correlate abilities to explore with increased passion for and knowledge of music, with increased consumption of music...
and therefore gone to more live gigs. I know plenty of other people who do this too, whether it's illegal downloads or things like spotify,myspace etc.
So yeah I don't have the answer to your question
and does the Netherlands even have as large a live music scene as the UK? Just lots of this stuff seems speculative- what I mean is, just because the amount of illegal downloading has gone up, and the amount of people going to gigs has too, does that mean that they have to be so closely related? Didn't live music enter the public consciousness during the last decade in a way that it hadn't for many years?
It means that there is evidence of a correlation. I guess you're really asking about causation though. Anecdotally it seems music knowledge/awareness is much broader now than say 10 years ago, which means the number of bands touring that a person might be interested in seeing is larger, which might convert to more gigs seen per person. Certainly total live revenue is significantly up in the last few years, and I would honestly hypothesize that the proliferation of music sharing (both illegal and legal, ie the full spectrum of the internet's influence) has contributed strongly to this. In other words, live music entered the public consciousness in the last decade because potential music fans have become able to learn of and listen to so many more acts than previously.
just kinda feels like that the boom in live music is often hijacked by people trying to justify illegal downloading.
Imposing draconian statutes on internet usage.
It's impossible to police downloading. There's no effective way to do it without massively curtailing the way we use the internet. I don't think anybody is willing to relinquish those freedoms to restore record labels to the 'glory years'. That would be punishing a great many to benefit very few.
I'm sorry, but if you can't find a way to run an profitable company using the most powerful business tool that has ever been created then you don't deserve to make money.