Get to the top through hard work and determination. I guess that’s one way. But what if you didn’t have to?
The resurrection of vinyl surprisingly started November 2013. The resurrection was powered by the release of Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories and classic rock reissued vinyl sales. Sales exploded that November according to Amoeba’s general manager, Rick Sanchez. Sanchez said, “It’s just continued since – it’s substantial, a really heavy spike, having a record in your hand is just way cooler than having a file in your iPod.” Around that time total sales soared 51% to 9.2 million. Vinyl now comprises 67% of total physical album sales.
Finding paid UK music jobs as a creative audio professional has at times been an uphill struggle. Just like musicians, audio professionals (sound engineers, sound designers, mix/mastering engineers etc.) are often highly skilled and highly under paid. It is difficult to think of another industry in which highly educated and skilled workers are routinely expected to work for free or in unstable or very low paid positions. Audio professionals are usually highly passionate and driven about their work and often take on unpaid projects or jobs, especially early on, in the hope of building a portfolio strong enough to find regular income. Getting a well-paid UK music job is tough and demands patience and determination to succeed.
I was recently absorbed by the teachings of one of the greatest war strategists in history, a Chinese general Sun Tzu. You may be thinking, “is this website not about music?”. And you would be right. Although, I am a big advocate of basing my knowledge and insight on as many different resources as I can (and I think you should too!). Even if the works in question do not refer strictly to your field, oftentimes you may discover fresh mindsets that can be quite rewarding in your work.
- Cherie Nelson | How Smart Musicians Are Selling More Albums with Social Media
- Wallace Collins | “Blurred Lines” Could Be Overturned On Appeal
- Jason Ventura | The Music Industry Says Farewell To Freemium
- David Reeves | Do Bands Need PR? An Alternative for Bands and the Importance of PR
How many times have you read about a cool new band who are about to change the face of music forever, usher in a revolution in popular culture and destroy everything we thought we once knew about art, style and ideology? How often does excitement fade to envious bemusement upon hearing the band’s EP and realising that we haven’t finally discovered the next Velvet Underground or The Clash, but rather a new King’s of Leon, if the King’s of Leon came from Hertfordshire and the singer’s mum writes for The Guardian. Sometimes, the hype machine is turned on before a band has even played a gig or released a demo. A band can have created less musical output than an average 7 year old with a new recorder, yet can still command the attention of the music press. Many new, undiscovered bands quite rightly wonder why they remain unknown while other, equally shit bands are showered in praise and press coverage. The answer, of course, is PR.
It is my opinion as a copyright law matter that this “Blurred Lines” decision will be overturned on appeal.
The genre or musical style of a song is not protectable under copyright law - the lyrics, the melody and the harmony may be, but that was not the allegation in this case. The claim was that defendants copied the style of the Marvin Gaye song, and I do not believe that legal threshold would be upheld on appeal as a matter of copyright law (although a jury might not understand that concept).
Maybe Rob Wells doesn’t really get the idea of cannibalism. I don’t agree with him on this, because streaming has hurt the one-track sales and the buying habits of the consumer. We see that in a reflection of the dropping sales in the iTunes marketplace and other content providers that have dwindling sales. In the November 2013 MIT Sloan Management Review, Wells explains that he does a lot through charts to get people on his side and a lot of the senior staff at the label seem to be less tech savvy, so it is hard to convince and persuade the senior level staff. Well used the example that he had to introduce senior level executives to Snapchat and Vine. He could tell if they were interested if they were engaged in the conversation, if not they would ignore him all together. This seems very frustrating, time consuming, and ineffective.
Beyonce demonstrated social media's music marketing potential when her unpromoted December 2013 iTunes exclusive set records and sold more than 800,000 albums in three days. Beyonce's feat encouraged Apple to acquire Beats for $3 billion in a partnership intended to replicate her success, insiders told the New York Post. Other sources told Billboard these moves signal Apple's intent to take over the music industry and squeeze out competitors such as Spotify. These trends herald a sea change where social media is becoming the key to successful promotion for both albums and concerts. Musicians who know how to engage their fans with today's technology stand the best chance of becoming tomorrow's chart-toppers.
- Simon Tam | Bands Shouldn’t Practice. They Should Rehearse
- Jay Cartere | Why You Need A Music Video
- Max Snow | How To Start My Music Career
- Anita Ginsburg | What Can You Do With A Degree In Music? Six Fun And Rewarding Careers to Consider
Attaining a degree in music opens up a world of possibilities. Not only is it enjoyable and mentally stimulating, but it can be very rewarding financially, as well. Among many others, you can pursue careers such as video game audio, orchestral musician, musical therapist, TV music supervising, music attorney and orchestra conductor.
Back in the 80s it may have been enough for you to release a song with no visuals, this song may have then touched the hearts of many who would grow to love your music and you as an artist.
Snap back to the modern age and you’d be lucky if anyone would take the time to shake a stick at your audio only release. In this day and age you NEED a music video to accompany your song, whether it’s a professional video or you’re singing your heart into your webcam, a visual aid will definitely boost your chances of capturing new fans tenfold. When’s the last time you downloaded a mixtape or bought an album from an artist you didn’t know?
Every year, thousands of people attempt to start their music career. With new technology and online services, this is now a journey that anyone can navigate. Making yourself knowledgeable about the evolving music industry is your key to starting a sustainable and successful music career.
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(Updated April 6, 2015)