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Entries in music business (60)

Tuesday
Feb142012

If Your Music Career Was Like a Food Cart

I often like to compare business practices of other industries and to take the lessons learned to apply it towards a music career. The other day, I was thinking about the food industry and it was so much like our world in music. I grew up in a very entrepreneurial family and started helping my parents’ restaurant business when I was still in elementary school so many of these lessons came quite early in life.

Here in Portland, OR, most people are starting their food business in the form of a food cart. It’s less expensive, there’s less risk, and you’re often grouped together in a “pod” of other food carts so often times you’ll just get crowds of hungry people who would like some food but are unsure of what they’d like yet (or you can be exposed to the customers of other carts). Picture yourself as a chef who wants to make a living doing what they love for a living: cooking. Not much unlike the music industry isn’t it?

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Friday
Jan202012

The Music Business Is Not Dying

We read so much doom and gloom about the record business every day that it’s easy to think that pretty soon the whole thing will come crashing down. Cheer up. It’s not as bad as you think.

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Thursday
Dec012011

Biz: New School Concert Ticketing w/ Ticketfly

You don’t need to be an industry insider to know that the ticketing segment of the music business needs a major overhaul. Concerts are more relevant to the industry now than they have been in a very long time, but there’s a lot more to be done if we are to see them reach their full potential — for artistsand their fans. Thankfully, movers and shakers like the innovators behind new school ticketing platform TicketFly still exist.

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Wednesday
Nov092011

How To Reach Out To Industry Execs

Every now and then, I go on an open mic binge and discover new little spots and new artists honing their craft. There was this one girl who was absolutely amazing. I told her what I did and she started asking questions. Our conversation came around to how one can get the right exposure and further their career. I shared with her a lot of things, but one of them was about reaching out to industry insiders and building a professional network that will help propel her career forward. It’s not enough to play live. You have to also work hard at building your professional network in the music industry. Finding contact info is easy. There are directories and registries out there you can buy. However, there are some realities concerning industry people that you have to understand before you reach out to them. Or else, you’ll only annoy and alienate them. Here are those realities.

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Tuesday
Oct112011

Navigating the Music Business - Mapping Out A Living

So how hard is it really?  You write songs and sell them, that’s all there is to it, right?  Unfortunately the music industry isn’t quite as simple as we’d all like it to be.  There are many different sectors through which an artist must pass and even more ways in which these sectors can be negotiated and traversed.  To successfully navigate the music industry one must learn what happens in each of these sectors and how they inter-relate.  To help you get started we have a ‘Map of the Musical Universe’ courtesy of PRS (click to enlarge).

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Thursday
Oct062011

Spotiwhy? : Are Subscription Music Services a Sustainable Business Model?

This essay is neither for nor against subscription music services, and will focus on answering four questions. 1) What is the revenue potential for subscription music services? 2) What are the most likely rates per stream? 3) How much money can an artist expect to make from subscription music? 4) Is a compulsory rate a sustainable business model?

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Monday
Sep192011

On the Money: Examining Musicians’ Revenue Streams in the New Digital Landscape

Future of Music Coalition (FMC) has launched a groundbreaking research project called Artist Revenue Streams, where we ask US-based musicians and composers, “How do YOU make Money from Music?” Project Co-Director Kristin Thomson from FMC explains in this MTT post where they idea came from for this research and why it’s so important that every musician or composer in the US takes this online survey, which is available at http://futureofmusic.org/ars until October 28, 2011.

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Wednesday
Sep072011

You Don’t Know Anything and Your Ideas Are Worthless (No, Seriously, Get Used To It…)

Originally written by David Greenberg for Berklee College’s Internship Blog and reposted during the Summer Re-run season on Greenberg’s own blog, tapedave. More about Greenberg follows this article.

In your first job (out here in the business world) there will be times when people are not going to listen to you. Many times. Or worse, tell you how wrong you are to your face, if not in an all-caps email that gets circulated throughout the company. Get used to it because it never ends, even when you get that so-called “experience” under your proverbial belt. For whatever reason, and there are multitudes of them that I could not possibly list here and stay within my allotted 400 words. Let me just say the personal successes and failures of your co-workers and, most importantly for today’s blog, YOUR FUTURE BOSSES, gives them their own specific, personal tunnel-vision that you cannot expect to fully perceive, much less fathom.

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Tuesday
Aug302011

Great Artists And The Music Industry Banana

Kurt Cobain blew his head off, even Martin Mills has a Maseratti and Amy Winehouse’s blood is not on Island Record’s hands.

The music industry is a strange thing. Full of a lot of mushy stuff that just loves being squished into its tight little cubicle alongside all the other mushy stuff.

James Blunt is the suburban front lawn of artists – there’s a song, there’s an album a cover, there’s a hit, there’s a car.

Most great artists are like the annoying neighbour that ignores your invite to the neighbourhood barbecue, the one that keeps letting his garden grow slightly wild, the one who ‘doesn’t care’ (but really does).

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Wednesday
Aug242011

Advice for Beginners and A Reminder to Veterans in the Music Industry

It amazes me that after being in the industry long enough to be considered a veteran by many that I have come to respect over the years, that there are some artists and companies industry related out there that think they are going to “GET TO THE TOP” by backstabbing or undercutting other musicians, agents, managers, producers, etc. That being said, they are “Playing Games” in our Industry!

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Tuesday
Jul262011

Question: Can there be another "CD Baby"?

Derek Sivers revolutionised the way music is distributed when he created CD Baby. Since then many others versions have popped up. Is there scope now for another CD Baby-esque venture?

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Monday
Jun272011

Why the Confusion? It Has Always Been About the Business

So much talk about the success, or lack of, making it in the new music business industry. But it really comes down to treating your musician career as a business. Let’s look at some statistics. History shows that…

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Monday
Jun202011

Pandora- What's In A Name? Does The Music Service Walk Its Talk?

One of the interesting aspects of the Rethink Music conference back in April was hearing MOG CEO David Hyman and (separately) Pandora CEO Joe Kennedy discuss the present and future of online music subscription services.

MOG is all about access. Outside of the usual holdouts, MOG’s catalog contains just about everything, including most of the releases on our Static Motor imprint. For fans, it makes for an intelligent (Echo Nest-driven) music discovery experience that seamlessly blends the mainstream and the independent. For artists, getting your music onto MOG is a cinch. As long as you’re distributed via an indie aggregator (CD Baby in our case) your music will soon pop up on MOG. For fans and artists alike, MOG is an excellent platform. Easy access for all, with top-notch audio quality to boot (and no ads!).

A different business with a very different model, Pandora certainly talks a similar talk, which is why I was struck when Joe Kennedy commented (paraphrasing):

Pandora is all about connecting people to new music.

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Wednesday
Jun012011

Remake Remodel - The Major Labels Speak

Amongst the busy chatter of digital DIY dudes and galloping gurus it’s easy to forget that there is a major, multi-million dollar music industry that already exists. That’s because we seldom hear from the major players outside the sanitized propaganda sheets of Billboard and Music Week. But this week we can read their views in a Music Tank report by ex-EMI head, Tony Wadsworth.

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