We've been hearing more stories lately about musicians who absolutely understand what many of us have been discussing over the past few years about how the music business is changing (not how it should change, but how it is changing). The latest is the story of The String Cheese Incident, who has built a successful business by giving people what they want. They recognized, unlike many other musicians, that they don't have a right to make money just because they make music -- but that they had to work at it to set up a business. They talked with plenty of other successful musicians and looked at the industry and quickly realized the old models were going away. They also realized that the way to succeed was to do two things: (1) give customers what they want and (2) realize the music is an input, and not the end product. So, their route to financial success included lots of touring, but also setting up a travel agency specifically designed to help fans make trips to see them and other bands. They also heavily promote their music online. They sell downloads of their concerts, but don't put any copy protection on them, realizing that: "The more people are exposed to the music, the better it is for the band."
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