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Before the Music Dies on IFC


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IFC just aired a great documentory on the music industries called Before the Music Dies. Top radio stations all owned by the same companies and record companies looking for the fast buck and not willing to groom talent. It reminded me of a year or so ago when Professor Carmen was schooling us on the music industry of the 70s, 80s, and 90s. Not much has changed except fewer people making the decisions on what gets aired.

However, technology is bringing us more bands and a more diverse way to spread the word. Is it the beginning of the end for conventional FM radio?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hard to say.....but judging by the past, statements about something being "dead" are dead wrong.

They thought TV would kill the movie houses, but the theaters ended up making more money.

Three-minute pop songs were thought to be headed for extinction in the mid-70s, but then came new wave.

And music downloads---free and cheap alike---have

whetted the taste for people to buy more music.

But it is true that the labels are not into artist development. It seems there are no more four-album contracts....you have one shot, and that's it.

As I had mentioned before, in an example, Justin Guarini(runner-up on the first American Idol)sold 140,000+ copies of his debut album. But the label thought it wasn't enough, so they dropped him.

Something is fundamentally wrong with the big labels. I would be more than thrilled to have my album sell 1/10th as much! And exactly WHERE is all that money going?

But I do think smaller, independent labels will make great strides in the coming years.

They will come out with a specialized, hand crafted product. It may cost slightly more, but will still be reasonable, and have a sense of pride doing it as a limited edition.

It is happening in another industry....beer! Yes, the same approach can be taken making music, as the microbreweries have been doing with beer.

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