The power of social media is growing in the music industry. Does it sell records? In rare cases, yes, but I believe that since it’s already become a significant factor in how music is discovered, sales aren’t too far behind. For example, my friends know my basic overall taste in music. If they don’t, a quick look at my social media channels could easily give them a few ideas. Charlie sends me a message saying, “What up man!? How have you been? I was listening to a band the other day and I thought you would enjoy them too. They are fairly new and are gaining traction quick. http://www.last.fm/music/The+Neighbourhood I think it’s pretty good stuff.” That personal recommendation (not a flashing message on the side of my screen or ad on Pandora) got me to open a new tab and listen to their music. It’s not rocket science people, it’s simply quality music that does the job. When bands take the time to make good music, it will eventually find their audience.
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Entries in video (4)
If you didn’t take a picture or make a video did you see it? The other day I found myself walking past a house with windows open, a small choir practising inside, something vaguely modern. My first thought was “I wish I’d brought my iPhone so I could record it and take a picture of the window through which the music came”.
I don’t imagine I had the same feelings at 16 about pop music as did someone born in 1900 and I don’t imagine young people feel the same about pop music as I did. But. There seems to be a movement towards admiration of craft and delivery that reflects the insistence of pop guru futurists that artists make sure they have a lot of interesting shit to show, as well as their fine faces and wonderful music. That is, that we like the music, OK, but what sets artists apart is how and what they show about how they live and make their art.
And there are two strands appearing. The first is the pure pop model that is as wet and spongey with its emotional and visual content as hard core porn. Have a look at the Kate Perry Making Of… videos. It’s not what she says or how she acts, it’s the actual tiredness in the eyes after a long shoot and the walking out of studio light into shadow. You never used to see that. The Monkeys did it in their incredible pop deconstruction film, Head, but who saw that? The Beatles tried it but it always came off cute. Both were scripted. I don’t think Perry faked it, indeed, that would be directing and acting worthy of a Cassavetes film. With the connivance of people like Perez Hilton the emotional pimples of superpop people are becoming as essential as the Max Factor that covers the physical ones up for the photo shoot.
YouTube is huge. We know that. But did you also know that it serves as the number 2 search engine, right behind the king of search and technically their parent company, Google.
That means there are more searches done on YouTube than on Yahoo, Bing, Ask or any other search engine! Do you know what they are looking for?
Much like the personal branding niche tells us to Google ourselves, musicians need to look at YouTub’in themselves. What videos show up? What channels, subscribers, comments and playlists are on the first page of your YouTube results?
Check out this site for interviews with the top music industry professionals, musicians, administrators, and more. Great way to learn about the industry in the present and future. I'm doing producer work for this website this summer by interviewing a classical music symphony and its administration. Great learning tool.