Billboard recently posted details about a proposed music service currently being created by Google. The proposal outlines ways to help major label artists with its tentative format, but there is no mention of indie labels or artists.
The proposed plans are to offer a basic digital music retailer concept with a twist. The company is hoping to provide an innovative cloud-based service where consumers can have their music in a “locker” for $25 per year. Music in the “locker” could be downloaded or streamed by an internet connected gadget.
The proposal seems to be an iTunes competitor and not a game-changer like most music fans had hoped.
When are the major online music retailers going to realize that working with major labels is only one part of the music industry moving forward? There are plenty of unsigned and indie artists who are worthy of their service, but seem to be excluded for now.
New music business models are currently being created to help indie artists market and distribute their music. From crowd-funding, distribution deals and music licensing, artists are finding ways around having to sign to a major label and make quality music.
Another aspect of this type of digital retail concept that is questionable is – quality vs. quantity. When iTunes was announced, Steve Jobs said they had a smaller amount of songs on their database, because they wanted “quality songs” (Derek Sivers of CD Baby Explains: The Day Steve Jobs Dissed Me in a Keynote).
Today, “quality” indie music is being made and is available for purchase. It would just be great for the music to be sold on such a large platform.
Do you think Google should break the mold and cater to indie music?
Noe Pacheco is the Director of Communications at GigHive.com.