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Prince Going Back To Stores Rather Than The Net

from the business-is-business dept

Prince, a musician who took to the internet very early on in exploring new internet-related business models, apparently has had enough of internet-only distribution. He’s signed a deal with Sony Music to put out a CD the traditional way. While some may claim this indicates the failure of artists promoting their work online, I don’t think a single early-adopter musician is a large enough sample size – especially one who some might considered more of a washed up musician than one at the top of his game. Still, it sounds like he’s pushing the boundaries with other aspects of music business models: anyone who buys tickets to see him in concert will get a copy of his latest album.

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Comments on “Prince Going Back To Stores Rather Than The Net”

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Jeremiah (user link) says:

No Subject Given

I was a “fly on the wall” for a conference call last week between a “power attorney” and an up-and-coming artist. The attorney’s camp (including a biz advisor, etc) were suggesting that the best model was to use CD’s as a loss-leader (the same way Safeway uses $0.79 2-litre sodas as a way to get you into the store) to promote events.

It’s no secret that a musicians *real* money is made at live shows selling schwag (t-shirts, stickers, etc.) The idea is to provide a bit more incentive for fans to swallow the growing price of tickets by using CD’s as a loss-leader: “..get asses in the seats and then pitch, pitch pitch your real profit: merchandising.”

Anonymous Coward says:

No Subject Given

Shouldn’t be to surprising. The only artists who stand to truly benefit from online exclusion are up an comers or those who are filthy rich and no longer need the money. Mr Princes extragravant life style has prevented him from being part of that second group so it’s back to the traditional method of getting lots of money up front and turning out what ever kind of music he feels like.

If somebody ever figures out how to make this online thing really work (ie every one makes money) they are going to be very rich. At least until microsoft steals the idea and makes it part of the windows operating system.

LittleW0lf says:

Re: No Subject Given

The only artists who stand to truly benefit from online exclusion are up an comers or those who are filthy rich and no longer need the money.

I buy a good 90% of my music online. And I am not alone. I hate going into record stores any more (as it seems more and more like they just push the current “top-ten” music which I cannot stand,) and prefer to stay away from Best Buy and the like unless someone has given me a gift certificate that I have to get rid of (and then I usually buy DVDs or Games with that.)

If I buy any music off-line now-a-days, it is in Costco or Sams Club, and it is usually stuff that appears on the shelf one day and is gone the next (usually best of albums by musicians I like.) Everything else comes from cdbaby or hgmn or the other indie music labels, and occasionally from Barnes & Noble online. And even more occasionally from the websites of the bands I like directly.

If I liked Prince’s music, which I don’t, I would probably have bought all of his music from his website by now.

Music, just like computer scientists, salespeople, education providers, etc., isn’t going to make anyone (except maybe the business managers running the labels or the lawyers running the RIAA) rich, certainly not musicians. If they wanted to be rich, they should have become business managers, union bosses, doctors, lawyers, plumbers, professional athletes or auto mechanics. Music has to be a labor of love, as very few with any real talent at music is going to make much money off of it.

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