Changes

LISTENS NOT DOWNLOADS

Who cares how many people downloaded the new U2 album, the only important thing is how many people LISTENED to it!

This is a huge sea change that is getting little publicity and has been overlooked in the outcry about streaming payments. In the future, you will get paid for every play of your track for all time. Talk to oldsters, the money’s in the publishing, and now the money’s in the play. The more people subscribe, the more each stream is worth. The more streams you get, the more you get paid. So you might have even retired, yet if your music is still popular, if you still have fans, you’ll continue to get paid.

STREAMS NOT SALES

SoundScan is nearly irrelevant. Furthermore, Spotify lists plays, information that used to be hidden from the hoi polloi. The fact that old media trumpets an old metric is indicative of their failing and flailing status. They do it because they’re brain dead and everybody else is doing it. It’s good to be number one, but much more important to be number one on Spotify or YouTube than SoundScan. Ask yourself, who IS buying music these days? Only the ancient Luddites, the rest have moved on to access.

HIGH QUALITY STREAMING

Deezer Elite is SO good you’ll gladly pay. I want to listen to all my old music all over again, to hear what I might have missed, especially on tracks where I never owned the CD. Tidal is coming and expect Spotify to follow. Sure, it’s double the price, but worth it if you’re a music fan. This is gonna change the face of both listening and the kind of music we are listening to. Rich acoustic sounds sound better in FLAC, it’ll pay to get it right in the studio, because once again people will be able to hear it!

RESALE/SCALPERS/SECONDARY MARKET

What kind of bizarre world do we live in where the only person standing up for paperless is Cat Stevens, who canceled at the Beacon because of high resale prices?

It’s sad that the NY legislature is so ignorant and so swayed by the wrong powers to the degree they ban paperless.

This is an artist issue. The only people who can prevent tickets from being sold at a multiple of face value are artists. But most don’t want to move on this. For fear they won’t sell out, or because they’re participating in the secondary market themselves.

It’s sad, income inequality has infected the music business. But, once again, it all comes down to the artists. They can solve this problem. You don’t have to make every ticket paperless, you can still do platinum, but you can either be part of the problem or part of the solution.

But the sad thing is the public has become inured to scalping. They know the only way to get a good ticket is to comb StubHub, and now even Ticketmaster lists secondary tickets. The enemy has won.

CONCERTS

The only thing that can’t be stolen, that cannot be replicated online. This is the music business’s advantage, one that everybody else is trying to copy. Events are rampant, publications have conferences, but music was there first. This is the silver lining of the internet era.

PHOTOS

The new autograph, the new souvenir.

Acts can charge for meet and greets, just as long as they let their fans post the resulting pictures to social media.

YOUTUBE

Was purchased by Google for $1.65 billion in 2006.

WhatsApp was purchased for $19 billion by Facebook in 2014.

Who got the better deal?

Yes, there are huge infrastructure costs, but one has to laud Google for picking up YouTube at what now appears to be a bargain basement price.

As for Facebook, I assume you saw the article that teen use had declined, “Teens are officially over Facebook”: wapo.st/Zzg1kk

It appears that Facebook paid quite a premium for WhatsApp, but the truth is you can’t be victimized by not invented here syndrome. Acquisitions can help you, the same way Apple purchased SoundJam to build iTunes.

SAMSUNG

What did Gretzy say, skate to where the puck is going?

Samsung is screwed in mobile because it doesn’t have unique software. The Korean company is being undercut by cheap Chinese Android phones. The big money goes to those who can predict the future and plan for it. If you’re focusing on today, you’re soon to be behind the times.

SHARING ECONOMY

It doesn’t matter how many people downloaded U2’s album, or Thom Yorke’s, but how many people shared them. Your goal is to get people talking about your production, it’s the only way to both keep it alive and make it grow. The old mold of mainstream media promotion is purely one on one, it engenders little virality, which is why new albums and movies are hyped to high heaven and are instantly forgotten. Your music should be a disease. Which can spread through the whole world via one person. If someone is not eager to share your work, you’re dead in the water.

 

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