The Pixies Say No To Record Company, Focus On Touring

from the good-for-them dept

Ever since Napster came out, it was easy to see that it was going to be increasingly difficult to just make money selling CDs. This seems fairly obvious, of course, but when people asked where the money would come from, it seemed equally obvious that the money would come from using the music to promote other items for sale, such as concert tickets, fan clubs, access to the artists and plenty of other ideas. Some people responded that (a) no artist would make as much and (b) what about artists who don't like to tour? There are simple answers, of course. Most musicians don't make any money. Under this plan, those few super star artists may not get as rich, but it would be much easier for other artists to make a reasonable amount of money -- since they wouldn't have to go through the same record label/radio promotion process. As for the question of musicians who don't want to tour... too bad. I'd love to be able to sit here and have people pay me entirely based on what I wrote yesterday, but it doesn't happen. I needed to come up with a business model that continued to make me money, and so do musicians. One group that seems to have at least figured out the basics of this is the Pixies. Rather than sign a record deal, they admit: "That's not where the money is. The business is with the real customers, the fans. They're the ones who say, 'OK, we'll come and see you perform." So, they haven't signed a record deal, but are out making money touring... and selling exclusive recordings of the shows right after they happen (which might violate a patent, but that's another story). It's funny that the music "industry" which is supposed to house the business whizzes is struggling to figure out what they can do other than sue people, while the musicians are out there reinventing the actual industry.


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  1.  
    identicon
    diablo esquire, Aug 13th, 2004 @ 4:19am

    tech rich minstrels whining

    what always amuses me is that the former street
    or stage minstrels who only were made rich by tech enabling the "bottling" of their performance arts for mass consumption,
    who in former eras, had to acutually show up and work for a living now simper and whine, about tech impinging mildly on their tech based
    gravy train...ah irony, ah ingratitude, ah ignorance

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    diablo esquire, Aug 13th, 2004 @ 4:20am

    tech rich minstrels whining

    what always amuses me is that the former street or stage minstrels who only were made rich by tech enabling the "bottling" of their performance arts for mass consumption, who in former eras, had to acutually show up and work for a living now simper and whine, about tech impinging mildly on their tech based gravy train...ah irony, ah ingratitude, ah ignorance

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 13th, 2004 @ 6:51am

    No Subject Given

    Not a fair test to see if going it alone works. The Pixies already had a following.

    Once a bad comes up from ground zero (ie never had a relationship with a music company) and can make this model work, then it will prove nothing.

    There are several acts today that could ditch the music companies and strike out on their own and make lots of money ... but only because people already know who they are.

    Would some one like Dave Mathews, John Mayer, or Hooties and the blowfish (just examples regardless of whether they are to your taste) have been discovered/popular at their current level if they hadn't gone through a music company first ?

    Maybe, but it has to happen before the rest of the lemmings will follow.

     

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  4.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), Aug 13th, 2004 @ 9:51am

    Re: No Subject Given

    Indeed, it is a different situation for popular bands and small bands... but it's not impossible to see how it works for small bands. Small bands *already* usually make most of their money playing local gigs anyway. However, but embracing file sharing and using their MP3s to gain new fans (especially outside of their immediately local market), they can hope to build a growing fan-base by which to become bigger. I'm not saying they don't need more promotions... but that they can do it much cheaper by leveraging the music, rather than trying to sell it.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 13th, 2004 @ 11:20am

    Re: No Subject Given

    Ok, but this is where I see a service such as itunes being more productive for these artists rather than straight sharing of the music ... I haven't 'shared' in quiet some time but I don't believe it was much more beyond a repository of music classified by genre if you were lucky. One of the nicer features in the iTunes world (and I assume other pay for services) is the links which point you to other music people bought who have similiar tastes. Therein I consider the music service to be worth it's .99 cent pay to play as I discover a number of artists I've never heard of.

    Again, I could be wrong, but sharing as I knew it was pretty much relying on word of mouth from friends or acquaintenances .. which often made me discover that I had very little musically in common with those people.

    I believe apple and hopefully the other music stores provide an avenue for independent musicians to put their music up ... know idea what the fee is but suspect it is very little. That appears to be a more coherent manner of reaching the masses, making a couple of nickels on the music downloads ... which aren't really what your trying to do ... but most importantly getting your music in front of the most eyes and ears possible.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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