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LOUNGE => General Board => Topic started by: frankbriggs on December 11, 2008, 10:34 PM

Title: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 11, 2008, 10:34 PM
Hey Everyone,
I would love to get some feedback from you regarding where you think the music business is heading and what the changes and new formats will look like.

I will explain in detail the areas that I am thinking about.

Many of you may know already that the biz has seen better days and it has become more and more challenging to make a decent living (at least for me). Don't get me wrong, I have had some great years and experiences and have been lucky to do some really creative projects... no regrets but, I am seriously considering other avenues. My life is a happy one with the exception of the constant hustle for work; ex.sessions, students, sale of product (DVD, CD, Books etc). and now there is piracy on a global level.

I in no way want to discourage anyone but, things are changing and if you have been reading and researching (I have had meetings with publishers, retail distributors, equipment distributors and manufacturers, music labels and distributors, managers, other musicians etc.). I am doing some home work. It seems the Music Business 2.0 is coming and no one is quite sure what it is going to look like. This is scary and exciting at the same time. I am interested in ideas and perspectives.

Things are down. Granted there is a recession but the music industry has seen better days. I have some friends that are doing well because the gigs they have haven't been affected too much but, most of us I think are feeling the transformation of the industry.

Here are some issues to ponder.

1) CD sales (including legal downloads)
are pretty dismal for most. One manager I talked with recently pointed out that in the prior week to our conversation the top 50 jazz artists on Billboard sold less than 20,000 units worldwide. Many people feel that music should be free and to a large number it seems that it actually is.

Even "I" have had to ask that my album be taken down from some blogging sites that were giving it away (full length, high quality, with art work and liner notes) and I am in no way a name anyone is going to know. I was careful because essentially this person is a misguided "fan" who thinks he was doing me a favor... maybe he was... your thoughts?

This group that I discovered were Jazz/Rock fans and are posting at least 50 albums a month. I know a couple of people (artists and labels) that had their work posted by these guys and were concerned and felt helpless.

SIDE NOTE; It is not "Sharing" it is "Copying"

-I can't see how music can survive without financial support,..any ideas?
How do we get people to pay for music? What do you think of subscriptions? DRM? New formats?
Is it over? Is music free now?

2) Educational Books/DVDs;
Bill Bay (president of Mel Bay publications) informed me that they are filing out copyright infringement papers and asking sites to take down books that have been scanned and made into pdfs....weekly. We had a meeting about what format we might be delivering future product in... obviously pdf has some draw backs as far as getting compensated properly..or at all. BTW Mel Bay Publications has cut production 75% (maybe not a bad thing...read on)

-when you put years into a project and it gets ripped off, it is discouraging to say the least.

What format would protect an author and publisher's work?

Could this be an area for subscriptions?


Publishers and authors need some hope that you can get compensated (as little as it usually is) to write and publish new books, DVDs etc.
Some of you know that Warner Bros Publications was put up for auction a couple of years ago. That doesn't usually happen to a company that is in the black. Personally I think way to many books have been published and I see some of this as a backlash from flooding the market. What do you think?

3) Magazines/News Papers; In trouble. Any ideas for a future model?
I think they will look like the Cafe here to some degree.

4) Radio/Television; again... in trouble also. Any ideas for a future model?

My 2 cents.....
I think most media will be online and available via subscriptions and that the Drummer Cafe is a look into the future. ...a magazine that is interactive with sprinkles of TV, instructional video, articles and a store (interactive classifieds) etc.
When I discovered this site I immediately went "yeah" and "wow"...bravo Bart.

All books will be "on demand" (if you want a printed copy) and available for download into a proprietary reader..(kindle or something)

The computer will be in the living room in place of the TV and all the content will be on demand. No more having to be home to watch "Dancing With The Stars" at 8:00 on thursday. Not only your TV shows and movies but all your music, newspapers, magazines and probably your phone (iChat, Skype) will be in one device...plus you can take it anywhere you go.

I also see live performance and bands coming back as that experience can't be downloaded, unfortunately it isn't happening yet. We really need healthy local scenes again imo. that is where it all starts.

In a nutshell.
1. How will we get our Music, News, Movies, Books etc in the future? and how do you think you will pay for it?


2. What should we do in the meantime?

>I know there is a lot here to digest but, after reading some of the posts here, I feel the Cafe is up for the challenge. Thanks for taking the time to read and respond..
Looking Forward

Peace
Frank






Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Todd Norris on December 11, 2008, 10:55 PM
Wow Frank!  You're literally asking the multi-million dollar question.  Let me see if I can attempt to give my 2 cents on a few of these:

I don't think the physical CD/DVD is going to go away anytime soon.  I for one prefer to have a physical CD with liner notes etc.  Unless downloads bump up the quality AND include full liner notes/cover art, then CD's won't go away.  Same with DVD's. 

I am starting to see more of the "on demand" stuff happening on my cable provider.  But it will take time for the amount of content to increase enough to make it worthwhile. 

I can see some value in putting a track from an album for free somewhere, but definitely not the whole album - and especially without the artist's permission!  How to stop pirating?  We can make it more difficult, but it will always happen.  Some @$$hole will find a way. 

I think newspapers will go the way of the buggy whip.  I haven't touched a paper in years.  I get my news on the 'net.  However, I prefer a physical magazine to carry around and take to the "library" (toilet). 

Radio/TV:  I won't even go into how bad the content is for both radio and TV.  I scarcely watch TV because it's all crap to me.  Airwave radio is a joke.  I do Sirius.  THAT's the way to go.  As a side-thought about "on demand", even satellite radio isn't all that necessary with sites like Pandora.  But even then, as I type this, I have over 6000 songs set to random play on my computer...

In short, I still see the need for real movie theaters with the ginormous screen, killer sound system, and big buckets of popcorn.  I still see the need for real CDs and DVD's.  I still see the need for live music.  I wish I had some answers on how to make live music more commonplace and affordable.  I haven't seen a big name act in years.  Too darn expensive to sit a thousand rows back and not see anything.  I'll buy the DVD that I can watch over and over and be up close for third of the cost.  Sad.  I do try to see local bands, but with my crazy schedule, that rarely happens either.   ???

BTW:  Love China Ranch.  Great stuff!
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 11, 2008, 11:36 PM
As above....
This is the 64,000 dollar question.
I've been looking into it, and reading, and researching for at least five years.
I think the short answer is no one really knows.
The next generation of consumers think a lot of content should be free (IMO), and they aren't that concerned about physically holding a CD or DVD.
I don't think it's the end of the world as we know it exactly, but I think things are changing in a big way.
The only partial solution I have is to diversify like crazy.
Keep drumming, teach, write music, get into film and tv, keep abreast of all new technologies and web innovations (MySpace, E-sessions, Drummercafe style forums etc).
My only comfort is that other creative people are struggling too, sometimes more.
Newspaper sales (and revenue) has seriously slumped.
Online bloggers are treated with the same regard as high ranked journalists who have to quote sources and check their facts to a high degree.
Some amazing writers/journalists are looking down the barrel, as are some of us in the music business. So something has got to be worked out.  ;)
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: NY Frank on December 12, 2008, 07:56 AM
No answers from me - just a coupla comments:

> in the prior week to our conversation the top 50 jazz artists on Billboard sold less than 20,000 units worldwide

That makes me very sad.  Do we know this to be absolutely true?
In that top 50, would the name artists like Diana Krall have been included?

As far as all the illegal downloads: I really think more money has to be invested in ad campaigns explaining that it is *stealing*.   There are people who are going to do it even after knowing it is wrong, but I have to believe there are many people out there who don't actually realize it's wrong.  They  need to be educated.

Final comment: I'm amazed at how often I encounter musicians who steal music.  People who aspire to to a career in music should know better.  They're actually contributing to destroying their own future livelihood.

There - I said it.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chip Donaho on December 12, 2008, 08:17 AM
I've watched what's happening in the music industry since I was a kid. People thought music was going down the tubes with Elvis, the Beatles, Doors, Jerry Lee Lewis, etc....It has always went in circles as a trend. Only time will tell, the more people get into depression the more they will quit listening to the news and throw on the songs they love. Because they're looking for something again. Sales may plumet, gigs go down because of economy. But it won't disappear completely. Seen this happen other times in history. What did they do? They built drums out of logs. ;D
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: felix on December 12, 2008, 08:53 AM
Call me crazy but I'm seeing and hoping for a resurgence in live music.

If gas prices can stay down and the economy keeps stinking people go out and DRINK.  I'm very surprised how the bars whom have bands in our depressed part of the country are doing much better than the summer and even the past couple of years.

Granted the pay is terrible but if the scene ever got where live music was playing 5 nights a week at any particular place in town- hey, that's a gig!

 
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: NY Frank on December 12, 2008, 08:58 AM
Call me crazy but I'm seeing and hoping for a resurgence in live music.

I'm always hoping for this.  It's dead in my region, but, I do believe it's possible
it could change.                Would make for some fun times.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chip Donaho on December 12, 2008, 09:25 AM
Granted the pay is terrible but if the scene ever got where live music was playing 5 nights a week at any particular place in town- hey, that's a gig!
Can't get lower than playing for free....I've known of many musicians to do that just to get exposure. Problem is, they're only getting exposed in that bar/joint. What good is it to haul out all your gear, set-up, tear down, pay for gear, and expect to make your dream. Plus doing a day-in, day-out job in a factory. Might as well be self employed. There's no guarantee the President will even make it. Whether a musician or as a businessman, it all comes back to what do "you" want. Is your part of the world treating you right? Only you can answer that.  ;)
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Lou on December 12, 2008, 10:02 AM
It has always went in circles as a trend.
I'm not sure if the current trend has a circular motion. I expect a weak(er) economic situation having an effect on people going to concerts and clubs, but when it comes to the sale of music (or movies or games) I think the Internet is what makes the current situation fundamentally different from 'the old days'. The Internet making it easy to find and download music ... and I also think the 'music companies will make enough without me paying for the latest album' attitude is a major factor too.

The general public (I belong to) has no idea about the financial struggle of the majority of the musicians. 'We' see the R&B artists on MTV in their million dollar cribs or read about the Rolling Stones, making half a billion dollars from their latest tour.

I have no advice for you guys (and girls) on how to improve your situation ... all I can say is that - seeing myself as an average consumer - the last three albums I acquired (Frank's 'China Ranch' and Poogie Bell's 'Get on the kit' and 'Thinking outside the box') I bought on line as MP3-files. The sound quality might not meet the demands of the audiophile, to me the quality is better than good.

My 2 Euro cents ...

Lou
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Peppe on December 12, 2008, 11:12 AM
I honestly think that the issue with illegal file-sharing will never be solved. There is just no way around it, technology-wise. The big file-sharing sites will offer protection to the users, making it easy for everybody to stay anonymous and eliminating the risk of getting sued by the record companies.

To be clear: I don't think that it's right to share copyrighted material, and I do know how much time and money it takes to get records out there. But to try and "correct" the behavior of internet users worldwide (like the record companies are trying to do) is naive and counter-productive. People will only be more opposed to the music industry. They never get to see the struggling musicians, they only see MTV Cribs.

On the more positive side, it has never been easier or cheaper to produce records in your own home, and you can do your own marketing on the internet. It will probably not generate a lot of money, but it can help you to sell audio-files and CD's. An impossibility only 10 years ago.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 12, 2008, 03:25 PM
I agree with everything said so far, particularly Peppe's last post.

Record sales are down (not just with jazz artists) and that has a trickle down (negative) effect. I wouldn't blame it all on illegal downloads though.
I think the internet has changed everything.
Less people are watching TV too.
Instead of going out, listening to records, watching tv, people are logging on to places like this and arguing about Neil Peart.  :(
 ;D
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Bart Elliott on December 12, 2008, 04:25 PM
I agree with everything as well.

To answer one part of this very big topic, I'm personally changing the way I'm doing things in the music business. I agree there are just too many drum books on the market. For the most part all they do is rehash the same old thing; there's nothing new. I personally have several educational books and CDs in the work that I've totally stopped working on because I think the market is flooded ... AND ... I don't want my hard work being made available to people who haven't paid for it. There are too many avenues that can allow this to happen, so I don't need to list them.

The Drummer Cafe itself is making some changes as well. With the addition of the Premium Resources, I'm slowly making what I have to offer via subscriptions. This way I can hold on to and protect what is mine, or at least make it harder for people to snag it and throw it up on YouTube, etc. This is another reason I'm changing the way this forum is used. People will now need to support this website in a financial way before they will be able to post on the forum. Any registered member can read the forum, but only past supporters, VIP members and/or current Premium Resource subscribers will be able to post and respond to threads on this forum. This change will be taking place January 1, 2009. You can read more about all of this  http://www.drummercafe.com/component/option,com_smf/Itemid,2/topic,18228.msg277758/#msg277758]HERE .
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 12, 2008, 05:48 PM
I think I'm in a unique position to answer this question, Frank. I've worked at newspapers and in broadcast as an online editor, producer, and columnist since 1995. I was an original staffer on the first profitable newspaper website in the country.

Oh, I'm also a musician with musician friends in LA, Nashville, New York, and all over the world.

All media is under siege by technology and a bubble-bursted economy. If you are in the media business at all -- print, broadcast, publishing, music, whatever -- you are no longer REALLY in the medium business. You are in the information business. You sell information, whether it be news, music, or data. And the dominating business model for the Internet is INFORMATION IS FREE. So whatever you produce has no value once its produced.

We've discussed at length on this message board that the hey day for session musicians was in the 70s and it's slowly become an archane phrase. The real studio stars these days are the Pro Tools experts who can turn crappy performances into radio-friendly performances on a computer that costs much less than a two-hour session with a musician and an engineer in an expensive studio. There's no real need for session musicians anymore, especially since today's music consumers have been brought up without hearing a professionally tuned acoustic kit recorded straight to tape. By that, I mean compressed sounds are the norm to young ears.

It's a little ironic. We all thought drum machines were going to replace us. We had the wrong post-production technology in our sights. Now, guys like Lars Ulrich don't need to be replaced on the studio tracks. His tracks just need to be adjusted.

So what's a session musician to do?

I think Randy Walker is probably the model for the future. He's a pro drummer with corporate gigs, but he's branched out: He owns his own studio, has a live video production company, and seems to have a knack for selling his session clients to let him simply produce the whole kit and kaboodle. He's in the position he's in because he understood back in the 90s that the future of the music business has nothing to do with location and everything to do with expertise and access to technology. It also helps to have built-in connections, but you still have to earn those wherever you're at.

I don't see the rest of the music world undergoing a major transformation in the short term. The corporate takeover of the music business happened a long time ago, and they still know how to wrangle a buck from young, naive up-and-coming acts.

As for a live music revival, that's a misplaced hope, I think. It's still dying a slow death, IMO. In the U.S., drunk driving laws and smoking bans -- as just and necessary as they are -- have had more to do with killing live music as anything in the music industry. Now we have ASCAP beginning to really crack down on fees, and bars aren't seeing the benefit of paying four or five guys for a night of mediocre covers. It's easier just to put in a juke box or hire a DJ. People really don't see a difference. They just want to dance.

I do think indie music on the Internet is the long-term future. Right now the industry is comparable to 16th and 17th century British Empire trying to patrol millions of acres of ocean for small, mobile, desperate and determined bands of pirates. I do think of the pirates as quasi-good guys in this scenario. I'm not refering to copyright piracy. I'm simply referring to otherwise savvy businessmen looking to get out from under the weight (girth?) of an industry bloated from a century of heavy-handed conquest -- and they're willing to take much less in the short-term to be in control of whatever it is they want to control down the road (musical vision, finances, whatever).

How that plays out is likely going to be further desegregation of musical genres and people as a whole. The Internet is a cultural fracture device. People gather in very small cliques and develop their relationships from there. That's how all information will be passed in the future. Something like this:

- If you are a Republican, you will get your news from Republic news sites and bloggers
- If you are a sewing fanatic, your entire world view will be filtered through message boards and sewing blogs
- If you're a drummer, your musical tastes will be shaped by the drummer communities at which you gather, as opposed to some uniform, wide-area radio broadcast trying to program you towards cultural conformity.

Eventually, the laws of competition will dwindle the number of players and information will have a value again because we'll approach oligopoly-like conditions. The closer you get to zero in a zero-sum game, the players are more likely to develop relationships with competitors rather than play the game out to its most extreme conclusion. The timeline for that is not a short one, though.

So I think the short answer to your question (too late!) is niche information providers will win with niche audiences. Find your niche and beat that drum loudly.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 12, 2008, 06:21 PM
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Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 12, 2008, 07:44 PM
I agree with everything said so far, particularly Peppe's last post.

Record sales are down (not just with jazz artists) and that has a trickle down (negative) effect. I wouldn't blame it all on illegal downloads though.
I think the internet has changed everything.
Less people are watching TV too.
Instead of going out, listening to records, watching tv, people are logging on to places like this and arguing about Neil Peart.  :(
 ;D



That is true Chris. This (right here) is another form of news, education and entertainment. The music business may be changed for good.

Quote
I honestly think that the issue with illegal file-sharing will never be solved. There is just no way around it, technology-wise. The big file-sharing sites will offer protection to the users, making it easy for everybody to stay anonymous and eliminating the risk of getting sued by the record companies.

To be clear: I don't think that it's right to share copyrighted material, and I do know how much time and money it takes to get records out there. But to try and "correct" the behavior of internet users worldwide (like the record companies are trying to do) is naive and counter-productive. People will only be more opposed to the music industry. They never get to see the struggling musicians, they only see MTV Cribs.

On the more positive side, it has never been easier or cheaper to produce records in your own home, and you can do your own marketing on the internet. It will probably not generate a lot of money, but it can help you to sell audio-files and CD's. An impossibility only 10 years ago.

I agree that piracy can't be stopped and it is cheaper but not exactly "cheap" to record an album.

I know people (not my friends) who take it as a personal challenge to crack a program, plugin, sample library, download an album, movies etc and get anything they can for free, or upload live recordings without consent from the artist. They don't see it for what it is .. "criminal behavior" .. which is a fairly recent phenomenon imo (I have heard "that is just the way it is now") and due largely to the fact that it doesn't "feel" like stealing or infringing on another's rights.

It is anti-social behavior and points to a personality disorder or at the very least flawed thinking. Most of the same people engaging in this activity would not walk out of a restaurant without paying the bill or Ameoba records with a pile of CDs.

Is it because they feel it is wrong or is it the fear of getting caught? The internet and the formats have eliminated the fear. Moving a mp3 from one window to another doesn't hold the same weight as getting pass a security guard because no one is looking. Musicians that engage in it are pounding nails in their own coffin I think.

)Side Note, I used a transcription program called Encore to write all my books. It was so easy to use I don't think I ever opened the manual. I was the only person I knew in Los Angeles that bought it though...serious. It was cheap too. I ordered an update in the late 90's that didn't arrive and when I called they told me they were closing shop due to piracy. They never had the high end copyright protection required today ...my first copy was on a floppy disc. They were bought by another company who doesn't update it very well and I was forced to buy Finale last year which is great but no where near as easy to use and it is expensive.)

It is an interesting and disturbing study of human nature. The question is what will some people do when they they feel they can get away with it? The answer is not exactly uplifting.

Thanks to the guys who picked up a copy of my album (Todd, Loubuntu etc.). This post is in no way about me trying to get people to buy it. If anyone wants to check it out the whole album is on Last.fm and it won't cost you anything to listen to it.

That being said; even though it is cheaper to record an album these days it still "costs". I have been reluctant to look at what I spent but I know it was at least 20k ...which is cheap. I have my own studio and many of the guys played for 0/barter or the buddy rate. 10 tracks x 4-5 players still adds up and that doesn't factor time (writing, recording etc). Mixing, mastering and duplication was probably 1/2 the budget. I don't care because it was my baby and I knew exactly what I was getting into. Would it be nice to break even?...absolutely.

This is all for education as I am a firm believer that knowledge is power. Experiences can be different. I am way upfront with my students without being negative about the business. At it's core it is "art" and historically "artists" don't usually get rich. I have a hard time watching some of my students and friends beating themselves up because they think it is "them" when the reality is, business as usual in the arts.

The current internet trend is another thing altogether. It could end up as being good but it isn't right now. No one knows for sure where it is going. which is why I thought it would be good subject matter for this forum.

That makes me very sad.  Do we know this to be absolutely true?
The figures I gave came from a very reliable source. A manager of some top smooth jazz artists. The figures were for all jazz (top 50) combined for a one week period in Billboard. He also said that none of his artists were selling albums and were doing ok touring. The current trend is to get a handful of names with one single back up band for touring. That in itself is not unusual and makes sense for many reasons. It does reduce the amount of gigs for sidemen however.

ok here is an article I found on the future of the "album"

http://tunecore.typepad.com/tunecorner/

I am putting a new band together and we have been talking about how to approach the album thing. We may only release a couple tunes at a time, no CD, digital only.

What is sad at this point is this; as an independent artist with the capability I could offer 24bit 96k audiophile audio as a direct download from my site or offer DVD quality instructional/concert videos and digital books. I could cut out the distributors and be my own publisher. This could reduce the price significantly... If it weren't for piracy I would be doing it today.

I am waiting for a solution to come to me. Right now I think part of the answer is in creating a community and family of like minds, which is a positive aspect of the internet.

Here is another thought provoking article by David Byrne in case you haven't read it.

http://www.wired.com/entertainment/music/magazine/16-01/ff_byrne?currentPage=1

OK Live performance.. when I first moved to LA I was shocked to find out that my band was going to have to "guarantee" a certain amount of ticket sales...pay to play.

 I played in central NY from the time I was 12 and always got paid and supported myself playing clubs (that scene is nearly gone also). It isn't the financial part of that that bothers me as much as the fact that "bands" and strong local scenes drive the industry (art) imo.

You have to start somewhere. A 25 minute set with 9 other bands isn't going to help you build a following. It is back to building a community .. your fans need a little time to get to know each other and you need more time to play.

 I had the chance to play every weekend as a teenager. Strong local scenes help the bands that are on the radio and young musicians get to hone their skills in front of an audience. I hope I don't sound like an old fart longing for the days of old, I really do think strong local scenes are an important part of the advancement of music. I haven't heard a decent rock song or band that I thought would be around next year, in quite awhile... maybe I am an old fart...lemeno and point me to your favorites.

Magazines, News Papers and Radio will be on the net for sure...probably TV also.
I was in the "first" digital issue of Modern Drummer last month.

http://www.moderndrummer.com/updatefull/200001710/Frank%20Briggs

If this seems like self promotion sorry...I am proud to be in there after being a reader since the first issue. The New Yorker, Sound on Sound and others are following suit.

I like the model Last.fm has and it looks like the future of radio to me. I am keeping my fingers crossed that Last and Pandora keep it up and honest.... again "content on demand" you are the DJ with nearly limitless possibilities. The artist gets paid (we'll see) a win/win... could be perfect.

So I think the short answer to your question (too late!) is niche information providers will win with niche audiences. Find your niche and beat that drum loudly.

I agree... a couple final questions.

How are the local scenes where you are?
What do you think can be done to improve them?
Any innovative ideas for delivering teaching material? (Bart is doing it already btw)


thanks for the space and the feedback..

Frank

PS I tried to post this all day... sorry if it seems scattered,
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 12, 2008, 08:38 PM
One thing that bugs me about the entertainment industry is that they can't get together and agree a few things across international borders.
I was subscribed to Pandora for a while.
I guess the idea is that you create your own radio stations, and the software offers up new and interesting music you've never come across. It's a great marketing tool.
Then one day I received an email from the site saying I wasn't a US citizen and therefore copyright laws dictated I could no longer use the service.
Likewise, I have movies, tv shows and music films on DVD that I bought in one country or another because they aren't available in my home country.
The media companies make it as hard as they can, and very difficult, to then view these DVD's. I know international DVD players exist..... I have one..... but even so, some DVD's are difficult to view.
I would purchase the right DVD if it was available.
Finally on the downloading thing.
One aspect that annoys me is the reasoning most downloaders use.
Let's face it, there are illegal downloaders posting on most forums, including this one.
You're right, they don't typically shop lift, nor do they walk out of restaurants without paying, but they don't value the effort put into a music production. As Bart even says (above), they don't understand the time and effort put into a place like this.
They think being a musician is about sleeping late, partying, being paid several hundred thousand dollars for doing a tour or album. Money For Nothing as Mark Knopfler famously sang. So they don't think it hurts anyone if they take some music off a website and don't pay for it.
 :-\
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 12, 2008, 09:09 PM
I heard Pandora was not able to work out a royalty agreement or something in Europe and is now only available in the US. I am not sure what the details are. What is interesting about that is Last.fm which is based in GB isn't having the same issues and they are providing a similar product. I actually like Pandora better except Last allows an independent artist to upload their copyrighted music and I will need to send Pandora a CD and wait to see if it gets added.

I have heard every argument of people downloading media or uploading for others... "sharing".
It is all pretty lame.

There is this opinion that if you have an album or have toured and published books etc. that you have enough and it is ok.

Honestly I don't see where anyone has the right to say who has enough. For some their royalties are part of their retirement plan and you should be able to leave something to your heirs... No one has a right to say that you or your publisher/label has enough...and besides they are usually wrong.

I think the formats will get worked out as the world gets smaller. When I authored my instructional DVD I made sure it would play in all countries (except for China)...

You guys rock..thanks


Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Brett Tanner on December 12, 2008, 10:36 PM
This is a post from a fellow on another message board.  He use to be an independent retail music shop owner and has taken his business to the internet and ebay. 

My CD and vinyl sales on Ebay took a dip along with everything else, though they seem to be coming back a bit. I think there was a two- or three-week span there when the media first starting yelling "the sky is falling!" and everyone collectively @$%# their pants and started planning to live on bouillon cubes and mud puddle water.

I also don't want to start the tiresome download-or-not argument, but I will point out the one big reason why I'd never sell new CDs again -- they devalue so fast it makes your head spin. Post-internet, it's really hard to keep anything on a retail shelf, even at a reasonable price by retail standards, because of the 'race to the bottom' online. Within a day of a CD's release, every unwanted promo copy is on Ebay or Amazon, alongside whatever copies have been stolen from every warehouse and distribution point in the chain. Add in everyone liquidating the stock of defunct stores, like I'm doing now, and it drives the prices still lower.

Anyone who wants a back catalog CD, new, can go buy it on half.com or Amazon for $5-7, if not less, so there's no point keeping a deep catalog of anything from a retail standpoint. It almost seems like the only good business model for physical product any more would be to make your run of CDs a limited-edition, just like the vinyl. Hand-number 'em, hype 'em, and when they're gone, people can download it from the usual channels.


This was a response to record sales and the economy but I think it's relevant to this topic.

 
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 12, 2008, 11:20 PM
Add to that musician prices have been driven consistently lower.
My peak wage (in whatever band and capacity) was around 1992.
Since then all my session fees, tour wages and tv score writing fees have been aggressively negotiated down by employers.
I'm sure if you compared early 90's prices (living expenses etc) to 2008, my earnings have taken an even bigger hit.

Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 13, 2008, 11:21 AM
Add to that musician prices have been driven consistently lower.
My peak wage (in whatever band and capacity) was around 1992.
Since then all my session fees, tour wages and tv score writing fees have been aggressively negotiated down by employers.
I'm sure if you compared early 90's prices (living expenses etc) to 2008, my earnings have taken an even bigger hit.

I think a lot of people's situations have changed since 92. A lot has changed in the industry.

BTW Chris I think we met in 1992 at namm at the Noble & Cooley booth??
I was touring with a band called Atlantic Starr at the time and I believe you were on tour with Dire Straits?

One thing that has changed is the studio scene.

I used to do a session here and there and got a chance to record in some very nice recording studios. Now I have a studio here at my house and do mostly indie projects. We are sending files back and forth via the internet. My web site has an ftp uplaod/download drop box for files, charts etc.

I have done some TV, albums, demos, instructional stuff and even did a "porn' awards show theme:) One of the studios I used to work at a bit was called Master Control here in Burbank. I became good friends with those guys and got to see how the technology changed very fast and led to them closing the doors in 04-05.

When I first recorded there it was a couple of Studer 24 track (2" tape), a 500k SSL, tons of vintage gear. When ADATS came out their business dropped because bands were coming in with tracks they recorded at home. Instead of a 3 week booking for an album it was now more like a week..mostly to mix. They would transfer the ADAT or DA88 tracks to the Studers and mix or just plug in to the SSL and mix. Madonna, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Disney and many others recorded and/or mixed there.

They had accounts with various labels (many defunct now) and I remember that it was getting increasingly harder to get paid in a timely fashion or at all.

Then ProTools happened. They bought the best ProTools rig you could get and set up a room for it and tied it to the SSL. They had a beautiful setup, The mix room was great.

Business dropped even more and they were doing virtual no tracking any more and the mix sessions and budgets were reduced as well. No one felt a need for the SSL with flying faders because you could "automate" a mix at home on your own Protools rig. IMO the quality of a home setup verses recording through a $500,000 Neve or SSL ..well there is no contest. Cost and convenience win out every time.

That being said I saw them slowly go into hock trying to keep it afloat until they closed the doors and sold everything off. At that time you couldn't give the SSL or especially the Studers away.

I think he sold the gazillion channel SSL for 40k and was happy he got that.

This change maybe took less than 5 or 6 years... for them.

So much has changed since 92, There wasn't digital (or digital that was accessible and affordable to average consumers) and there wasn't the internet. There also wasn't this huge glut of freaking drum sample libraries and loops..and they keep coming.

The mix engineer on China Ranch mixed it in his home studio (his garage). I think it sounds really good. BTW he mixes the YelloJackets, Lyle Mays, Vinnie Colaiuta, Disney projects and Peter Erskine in the same space....things are way different all the way around. Peter does a lot of recording at home and I am pretty sure Vinnie did his track on the last John McLaughlin album at his home studio.

Having your own studio it seems has become a necessity. I am not an ultimate authority so if you have another experience please chime in

I have been building my sample library for Stylus RMX it is ridiculous what you can do with this one instrument. I could do TV and probably some film scores right here by myself and I think that is part of what happened to sessions for drummers...correct me if I am wrong.

Read some interviews with Hal Blaine. He was a huge session drummer before the drum machine was introduced in the early 80's. I only got to play cymbal overdubs for Atlantic Starr because they liked the drum machine vibe. Samples, Loops etc have replaced a lot of drummers in the studio.

You can argue that the quality isn't the same. Of course it isn't. Real drums played by a good drummer, recorded on high end pro gear verses samples?? it is a joke in comparison but... it seems the convenience and the cost tips the scales for many. Plus I don't think the average person knows the difference...so the consumer isn't complaining.

I have lost composing gigs to non musicians with SoundTrack Pro or GarageBand. Royalty free loops of all instruments. Quick, easy, cheap....what now?

We all know (or should) that CDs sound better than mp3. I read recently that many felt the LP wouldn't catch on because it didn't sound as good as the the previous version where you needed a stack of discs to play Beethoven's 5th. Now you could get it on one disc and convenience won out over quality.

I remember so many people thought CD was inferior to vinyl and that digital is harsh sounding etc.... but now you can have the whole Symphony on one side!. Personally I embraced the fact that you also had dynamics which wasn't possible to a large degree with vinyl.

Sorry this is so long.

To sum it up and my whole reason for this post.

Things change, technology changes, business models change. Everyone saw the CD coming and we all see the MP3 etc. coming.
What I think many people didn't see coming is the economic ramifications of all this new and awesome technology. Music will never die. People will continue to make music always. It seems the importance of it is changing or diminishing along with the way we deliver it and the way we get compensated as creators of it. The drummers dilemma started nearly 30 years ago with the introduction of the drum machine.

I would love to hear David Crigger's point of view. Is the master in the house?

Anyway.. this is all filtered through my experience mostly so I welcome feedback.
FB


Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Dave Sharma on December 13, 2008, 11:34 AM
an effort at summing up big ideas in a short response:

things are not easy now.  the general climate of financial fear means that some of the lamer-but-well-paying gigs (holiday parties, etc) have disappeared.  Never things I enjoy as an 'artist' but as a craftsman, i got no problem making a good living do the mundane.  beats working a mundane office job... except that you get benefits and a dependable salary.  

but i digress.  the industry is shrinking from it's previous form on all fronts.

BUT::

this is an industry, and if you engage in any method for pay or barter, you're doing BUSINESS.  so it's time to think like a business.  Plan, strategize, assess, re-assess.  

where 90% of people see a problem, you have the opportunity to be in that 10% that see an opportunity.  not a solution, per se, but a chance to do something different... and if you don't, someone else WILL.  think like google and change things entirely.

what doesn't work in this industry?  Record labels?  ok...start your own.  it'll be a pain (i know this from running a small label), but once you secure distribution, your label exists.  sell CD's on cdbaby; sell mp3's and mp4's through itunes/amazon/emusic etc.  start a subscription service on your website that gives upfront-paying fans something extra (free tickets to shows, unreleased tracks, stickers/buttons/pins etc).  All ways to generate revenue as an artist and potentially grow a fanbase.

Yes, the album is essentially a dead format... and for all but the most compelling of projects, good riddance to bad rubbish.  We, as a purchasing public, allowed major labels to develop that model into a bloated monster.  No one in the world needed a jessica simpson "album," save for the up-and-coming songwriters who were able to put foot on the table w/ a placement in there.  

Let albums be albums and let's all hail the return of the single.  let's hail the demise of the CD and the re-emergence of vinyl... even 7" records.  yes, they're a growing percentage of a shrinking market, but still-- the #'s are on the up.  press vinyl; make it a collector's item.  include free mp3 downloads w/ the release (something i'm doing for a release coming out next week).  develop really great artwork and make your item something worth buying.

we're in a situation where we can either bemoan the death of an industry, or we can build a new one in it's place.  If you've got the hustle as an artist, YOU can make it happen.  Read up on what derek sivers @ CD baby has to say, check out taxi, etc.  do it yourself!  because no one's gonna do it for you.

and as chris said, diversify, diversify, diversify.  I know a lot of people making a living playing music, but none who are ONLY playing.  the day and age of the Jim Keltners and Jeff Porcaro's may truly be over... in order to survive as a muscian, you need to be a player, educator, manager, promoter, publicist... the list goes on.

but it CAN be done.

just not the same way it was before.

(and that's not exactly a bad thing).



Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 13, 2008, 03:01 PM
and as chris said, diversify, diversify, diversify.  I know a lot of people making a living playing music, but none who are ONLY playing.  the day and age of the Jim Keltners and Jeff Porcaro's may truly be over... in order to survive as a muscian, you need to be a player, educator, manager, promoter, publicist... the list goes on.

but it CAN be done.

just not the same way it was before.

(and that's not exactly a bad thing).

Well yes, I agree and actually have been doing it for a number of years.
The Renaissance man is a necessary approach these days... I think. There are still some premium gigs out there and even more qualified people to fill them.

Selling music direct (and basically everything else) will be the future.

I guess we are tapped out of ideas. The post from "gatorsnot"...great name:) is right on.
Cds are already dead but not everyone knows it yet.

And I really hope this doesn't come of as bemoaning. I embrace change most of the time but there is an extraordinary amount of change going on right now, a lot to digest.
The internet isn't much different than the wild west in some ways.

I still make a living but like you pointed out I am now engineer, producer, song writer, record label, distributor, publisher, video editor, web designer, ..oh yeah and I play the drums!!:) almost forgot.

I think it is pretty clear where it is all going .. at least to me.

I am still curious about local scenes though. To me that is the heartbeat of it all.
I know about LA and NY a little already.





Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 13, 2008, 05:24 PM
By the way Frank, great (long) post.
I concur with everything you said. My experiences are very similar.
I admit I'm a glass half empty kind of guy, so I don't mind these discussions. Being the person that I am, I tend to think the contrary view is unrealistic; a rebirth of the industry, but in the end I'm not all doom and gloom. As has been said, music and musicians will survive.
Regarding local scenes, I'm not sure if my input is going to enlighten you any.
My take on the Aussie scene is that it is quiet.
We are so far away from other scenes.
Born and bred Aussies are resourceful, so bands have broken out (AC/DC, Wolfmother, Kylie etc...) and individual musicians and recording engineers/producers have moved away to further their careers.
I was hoping the internet would shrink the world some more, and Australia would seem less isolated, but the net here is under resourced, therefore slow and expensive.
My last few years in the UK scene were no better.
For at least ten years DJ's had replaced musicians.
The dance clubs were much more popular than live music venues. DJ's who turned record makers were also successful selling their records and gaining respect. I even found myself dealing with DJ's who had been hired to A&R at large record companies.
Not to diss DJ's - I count a few as friends and I honestly love a lot of that music - but some of these guys I dealt with had no concept of basic music theory like chords or melody, and had little understanding of record production beyond drum programming and sampling. I watched a few disasters while they tried to A&R bands made up of guitars, bass and drums.
Anyway......
The DJ/Club scene in the UK has declined rapidly over the last five years.
At least one DJ I know has formed a regular band, is trying to write normal songs with guitars, pianos and string arrangements.  :o
I don't know what else to add, except to say I'm interested in Mr Crigger's thoughts, as well as other regular Cafe contributors.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 14, 2008, 03:13 PM
Thanks Chris,
I think the new technology is exciting. The playing fields are getting leveled and the whole business is shrinking. There is a lot of great music of all genres being made today but it is like finding a needle in a haystack. I am a big Rock and Pop fan. I love songs and bands. Live performance is something that can't be downloaded and I think that will get stronger eventually.

BTW There are a couple teachers here (outside of the schools) doing group classes with bands. He teaches them tunes and does a showcase once in a while at a blues club. It is a great idea. The club is usually packed, the students get a chance to have that band experience and play in front of an audience.

I think it is called "Join the Band" or something like that.
If anyone is looking for something different as far as teaching goes and promoting live music. I think this is a good idea to try to launch in your area.

I just heard about Quincy Jones' call to Barack Obama to create a position for US Secretary of The Arts. http://www.quincyjones.com/?p=894
I like that idea.. we have had Secretaries of War..why not a Secretary of Art?


Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 14, 2008, 03:54 PM
Probably because they don't have a budget.  :-\

I had some absolutely seminal experiences in my early drumming days being taught to play in an ensemble.
They used to have these weekend workshops for kids, I don't know if they still have them.
Anyway, luckily my parents signed me up for a few. They involved a team of studio and/or jazz musicians. Back then they were one and the same.  ;D
One I particularly remember back in the early 70's involved the band Soft Machine (John Marshall on drums). On the first morning they played for us and gave a talk. Then we were split off into instrument groups. The Softs decided to concentrate on one song; 'Chameleon' by Herbie Hancock. Actually primarily the main section only.
At the time I could barely play any drum groove. It was the first time I'd ever learnt a groove with an off-beat element (the first snare hit) and the first time I'd ever had to make my drumming work with other instruments (bass of course).
We spent the rest of day one discussing drums, drum grooves, and working on the Headhunters tune.
At the beginning of day two we started working on the song in various ensembles.
In the afternoon of day two we went into performance mode and everyone got to have a go at playing 'Chameleon' in front of parents and other attendees.
There were keyboard players, guitarists and brass players, so we learnt about playing for soloists.
Well it was a thrill to learn to perform, and quite frankly a massive thrill to spend two days up close and personal with such experienced and well known musicians.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: KevinD on December 14, 2008, 10:43 PM
Well this is a great thread, I think we’ve spoken about some of these elements separately over the past few years (copying/piracy, technological advances, the decline of live playing) but this is the first time we’ve woven them together, finding the solution may be tougher though. With that said I think there has been a lot of thought put into the responses.

I don’t think earning a living as a musician or in any of the arts has ever been easy, but  I think today there are more obstacles to overcome. I grew up in the Catskill Mountains in New York, a large resort area, my first drum teachers made their living playing at the hotels. (This was in the mid 80s) It was a job, none of them were rich but it afforded each of them the ability to buy a house in a middle class neighborhood and live a comfortable lifestyle. Times were certainly different then, there were usually two or three drummers working various rooms in each of the hotels during any given time, sometimes more during peak periods.  For many of those musicians the hotels were looked upon as safe and reliable employment that would always be there, much like auto workers used to look at the car companies….well things certainly have changed. Most of those hotels are all gone, and most people nowadays realize there are no guarantees with any jobs, and much less so in the arts community.

Many changes have come about since then, most have not made things easier for musicians, and unfortunately the choice for the musician is to adapt or choose another line of work.

So where is the music industry going? Well I wish I knew, the model has changed dramatically over the past 8 or 9 years. While there will still continue to be a few big acts in popular music to be signed and developed every year by the big record companies in the traditional manner every year, I think the model for most others especially in the idioms that have a smaller market share like Jazz will require more creative methods.

We’ve spoken about the fact that the technology advances have been somewhat of a double edged sword, making things easier to prate but also making it easier to get the word out that you have a product to sell. Some do it better than others.

The traditional model of a record company marketing the music to the masses is no longer valid. I think the model going forward will be closer to how the band Fish became such a huge entity without the benefit of a major label and virtually no radio airplay. Instead of a huge marketing budget, the fans spread the word, the fans told each other about the band, they did the networking and it obviously worked. I cannot say I was a fan of the band but you have to admire how they did it.  This was before the boom of social networking on the web really took hold.  A large part of the huge success of the Obama campaign was that his team of supporters expertly used social networking sites on the web to create a buzz about him and get people spreading the word about him.

How to solve the problem of trying to earn a living as a musician trying to support a mortgage and a family?….A tougher question.  I think the player is going to have to hustle ever harder by engaging in the aforementioned E-sessions, composing, writing articles and educational endeavors, in addition to the standard gigs-all things that Frank seems to be doing today. 

The path to success (by your own definition) is still there but it is much less clear than it once was. True, it means you work harder for possibly less money, but in reality that is pretty much what everyone has to do irrespective of their occupation in today’s economy.



Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 14, 2008, 11:41 PM
Well this is a great thread, ---
The path to success (by your own definition) is still there but it is much less clear than it once was.

Thanks Chris W, Chris D, Matt, Kevin and everyone who took part in this.
I think the ensemble style teaching is a great model. I hope it spreads.

I appreciate your feedback... at my age i would like to come up with ways to help nurture scenes for kids to create music. Nothing looks great right now because the economy is bad. Musicians and music depend on disposable income mostly. When people are tightening their belts all the arts suffer (except for maybe ..movies). it will come back, it may look different though.

I had to define "Success" for myself awhile ago for my own sanity. i have had a major record deal, toured with a number one band, had creatively fulfilling projects, published books blah blah blah. I have also had rich friends some with with Grammys and Platunum albums who were not happy and didn't feel successful.

I came to the conclusion that "success" isn't measured by money, experiences or things, it is measured by your own happiness..it is a personal thing. the good news is happiness is achievable by anyone. Sorry if I sound like Dr Phil but it is true.

More on this..
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: eardrum on December 15, 2008, 01:57 AM
Great discussion. Thanks Frank and all.  I wish I had more time to dive into the subject.  Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on what time of day you ask me, I don't make a living with music.  Being a consumer however I may have a different perspective.  First, I'm not a fan of pop music.  The only live music I hear (not counting my band) is at the jazz clubs, at church, some of the local festivals, the local colleges, etc.  I just came back from a fantastic concert with a local junior college jazz orchestra - Louie Bellson was suppose to be the guest artist but broke his hip recently so Dave Weckl filled in. It was in support of the college scholarship fund.  Man it was a great concert!!! 

Here's an intersting sociological observation... Each of my kids (I've got 5) has very different tastes in music.  My youngest loves (right now) Getz, Joao, Ella, Louie and set one of my radio presets to old station playing old jazz.  She also likes a few artist here sister likes (Kings of Convenience, etc).  One of my kids is more into punk but went with me to the Weckl gig and loved it. Another is into heavier and spacier stuff.  Etc., Etc.  My point is that each one has a different playlist and they grew up under the same roof - not on the other side of town!  When I was growing up, my brother and sister and I listened (mostly) to the same stuff and so did everyone else.  Market segmentation is a huge factor in marketing a product.

Second, CDs, LPs etc, print news, books and magazines included are all on there way out (I sure hope blogs go to, I really don't care about 99.99999999999% of what is going on in lives of 99.999999999% of the people online- I digress).  We are in the beginning of the transition.  My kids all had to Carry very heavy backpacks (very bad for your back) full of books to school and that ticks me off greatly.  Whether it is the publishers strangle hold on the state schools system or some conspiracy, it's STUPID. Wasting all those trees when most of the kids have Iphones that could download the books.  I get most of my music via Emusic.com.  $10 per month and I get 40 mp3 tunes from their expanding library - not the most popular stuff but great for me.  I've been telling my wife for years to stop buying Videos and now DVDs.  I've been renting from Netflix (many instructional drum videos) and now streaming legal videos and don't think there is any need for me to fill up cabinets and boxes with the stuff.  We also get cable with more channels than I have time to watch. The future however is a utility service. To have electric, gas, phone service in the past was not an entitlement - now it seems that it's a basic right. Of course they want you to think that so everyone is required to pay... Eventually, TV, News, Music, Education... You will pay a service provider and get everything over your network pipeline.  Microsoft has been adding 10,000 servers a month to data centers in the US and Europe partly because you won't be buying their software, you'll be renting it.  Of course having a magazine laying around when you take a dump is convenient now but is quickly going to become a thing of the past. 

Live music. There will always be a market for skilled musicians playing good music at local events but it may never again be a lucrative career so many. The phenomena of the mega star, the huge stadium concert, etc is really a modern invention (Elvis??).  So is the working studio musician making a big salary.  I'm not saying it will go away entirely but I wouldn't be surprised if the studio work is almost entirely replaced by machines and big live shows essentially fade away and become events experienced on your living room couch. 

Many of you making a living in the biz have to deal with the present (paying rent) and the future (what's around the corner) and my heart goes out to you.  It's a very tough gig.  I have to deal with this in my business and it keeps me up at night and I'm in a fairly stable industry.  My hope is that we (as a society) don't forget how great it is to hear live music played by skilled pros.  This of course requires that we are able to keep a standard of living that enables us to pay you guys.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 15, 2008, 12:39 PM
I came to the conclusion that "success" isn't measured by money, experiences or things, it is measured by your own happiness..it is a personal thing. the good news is happiness is achievable by anyone. Sorry if I sound like Dr Phil but it is true.

Yes, but money buys a lot of great therapy to help you discover what makes you happy. And when you find it, then you have the money to afford to enjoy it.

 ;D

Seriously, money can't buy happiness, but when every day is a struggle, the lack of money can make it very, very difficult to enjoy the things that do make you happy. Spend 5 years taking care of a disabled spouse on an income better suited for a 20-something single and you'll know what I'm talking about!
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: chilledbongo on December 15, 2008, 01:03 PM
i have no idea where it's all going. but i do know one thing: i am now embarrassed - that's right - embarrassed to shop for cd's in the retail outlets that still carry them. there is no one - i mean no one - even looking at them today except old people who obviously don't download and wouldn't know a nano from a nanny.

cd's are like geritol now - and i am very sad about that because one of life's great pleasures for me has always been buying music, whether vinyl or cd, especially used.

i deplore mp3s from an audio point of view. it's too bad the current generation has been brainwashed by apple to think that an mp3 is a viable form of listening to music.

seems to be more great indie music out there now, thanks to technology making it so simple to record. but somehow, i'd prefer to go back to the old days when a new 'album' was an event.

i think live music is doing fine, at least where i live. though i haven't bought a 'concert' ticket to see an overpriced and overpaid superstar in years.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 15, 2008, 01:14 PM
For the, um, record, the large publishers probably have the most incentive to do away with CDs. Why? Because it's hardware, and hardware is far more insecure than software. CDs are required to play on many different platforms, so you can't encrypt them. It's impossible to protect data on a CD, DVD, or any other physical data device.

If we did away with CDs, the ability to rip them would go away immediately. iTunes is the standard, IMO, because it's so hard to convert an iTunes-licensed tune to a more open format. It's possible, just not easily accessible like ripping a CD to the hard drive. What needs to be done is some additional legislation that disallows the burning of copyrighted digital content to CDs and DVDs (i.e. you can still burn a CD from iTunes) OR force the hardware industry (i.e. CD makers) to adopt a format that only plays encrypted MP3s and MP4s.

I say all that knowing the problem really isn't in the U.S. It never really has been. It's a global issue. You can lay down all this legislation in the states, but you can't do anything in Korea, Taiwan, or other countries that are the core of the bootleg industry.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 15, 2008, 04:23 PM
i am now embarrassed - that's right - embarrassed to shop for cd's in the retail outlets that still carry them. there is no one - i mean no one - even looking at them today except old people who obviously don't download and wouldn't know a nano from a nanny.

OK I guess I AM old(er), but there are some very fancy CD stores near me and I shop at them regularly.
When I get the CD home I live with it for a while, then convert my favourite tracks to iTunes so I can listen to the music around the house or on my iPod.

Regarding the demise of CD and DVD, I agree it's because it is hardware. Don't forget hardware is an extra cost that isn't incurred by conversion to online download.
I'm sure record companies and software producers would love to see the back of the CD because it costs a lot of money to buy the disc, have it burned and have the accompanying artwork and text designed and printed.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 15, 2008, 04:25 PM
OK I guess I AM old(er), but there are some very fancy CD stores near me and I shop at them regularly.
When I get the CD home I live with it for a while, then convert my favourite tracks to iTunes so I can listen to the music around the house or on my iPod.

Regarding the demise of CD and DVD, I agree it's because it is hardware. Don't forget hardware is an extra cost that isn't incurred by conversion to online download.
I'm sure record companies and software producers would love to see the back of the CD because it costs a lot of money to buy the disc, have it burned and have the accompanying artwork and text designed and printed.

Chris, how many times have you purchased a CD for one song and ended up liking other songs much better? The B-side days are pretty much over. That's a really sad day for me.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: donelk on December 15, 2008, 07:12 PM
I've been reading this thread and thinking... a lot.

I am not a professional. After college I made a conscious decision to not pursue music as a profession. I was worried about lifestyle, security, family, money, money, money. I was actually close to taking a big casino gig, but chose not to. I decided to keep music a hobby and not a vocation. After all these years I don't regret my decision.

So, now I have a day job and play 5-10 times a month. I live in a college town of 150,000. I play soul, blues, funk, lots of jazz, classical, etc. etc. I record from time to time.

Two weekends ago I played a small jazz club. Last Friday I played R&B in a local bar. Saturday I played two basketball games with the local university "pep" band.  Total earnings for all these gigs combined? About $100.

My decision, many years ago, has helped keep music fun for me.

I wish I had valuable input to this thread. I guess my only contribution is to ask... Do you still enjoy what you are doing? What would you do if not music?

Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 15, 2008, 07:49 PM
I don't regret a thing about my choice of a music career.
If a person considers choosing music as a career, I think it's good if they can't see themselves doing anything else. It's like a vocation.
That way, you don't mind dealing with the lows and hardships, both of which tend to accumulate in the early years of a music career, and tend to lesson as you gain experience and a resume.
Once you start to think about the other things you could be doing, it's best to go do them - no shame in that.
There's a ton of downside I don't want to be dealing with in the music biz any more, which is why I play less frequently and have diversified into non music related industries.

Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 15, 2008, 07:53 PM
Yes, but money buys a lot of great therapy to help you discover what makes you happy. And when you find it, then you have the money to afford to enjoy it.
 ;D
Seriously, money can't buy happiness, but when every day is a struggle, the lack of money can make it very, very difficult to enjoy the things that do make you happy. Spend 5 years taking care of a disabled spouse on an income better suited for a 20-something single and you'll know what I'm talking about!

I do understand. One of the reasons for this post is to brainstorm to see if there are any solutions for creating a stable income doing what you love to do.

I am hoping I will have a list at the end of this and advice other than "don't quit your day gig". Some of the guys I play with are extremely busy right now...so it isn't all bleak. Happiness is the ultimate goal I think. If that requires making more money maybe we can figure out how to do that right here.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 15, 2008, 09:17 PM
Quote
For the, um, record, the large publishers probably have the most incentive to do away with CDs. Why? Because it's hardware, and hardware is far more insecure than software. CDs are required to play on many different platforms, so you can't encrypt them. It's impossible to protect data on a CD, DVD, or any other physical data device.

I say all that knowing the problem really isn't in the U.S. It never really has been. It's a global issue. You can lay down all this legislation in the states, but you can't do anything in Korea, Taiwan, or other countries that are the core of the bootleg industry.

Hadrien Feraud's new album is available on iTunes but you can't burn a CD from it (at least that is what I heard). You can put it on your iPod but you can't make a CD. Personally I think they are on to something. Like you said kind of..proprietary devices.

If you download to a portable device ie; iPod. You can then plug it into you living room or car.

Honestly though I see it going to subscriptions. We will be subscribing to 'music" and subscribing to "movies" and subscribing to "software".

Quote
Great discussion. Thanks Frank and all.  I wish I had more time to dive into the subject.  Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on what time of day you ask me, I don't make a living with music.  Being a consumer however I may have a different perspective.  First, I'm not a fan of pop music.  The only live music I hear (not counting my band) is at the jazz clubs, at church, some of the local festivals, the local colleges, etc.  I just came back from a fantastic concert with a local junior college jazz orchestra - Louie Bellson was suppose to be the guest artist but broke his hip recently so Dave Weckl filled in. It was in support of the college scholarship fund.  Man it was a great concert!!!  

Here's an intersting sociological observation... Each of my kids (I've got 5) has very different tastes in music.  My youngest loves (right now) Getz, Joao, Ella, Louie and set one of my radio presets to old station playing old jazz.  She also likes a few artist here sister likes (Kings of Convenience, etc).  One of my kids is more into punk but went with me to the Weckl gig and loved it. Another is into heavier and spacier stuff.  Etc., Etc.  My point is that each one has a different playlist and they grew up under the same roof - not on the other side of town!  When I was growing up, my brother and sister and I listened (mostly) to the same stuff and so did everyone else.  Market segmentation is a huge factor in marketing a product.

Second, CDs, LPs etc, print news, books and magazines included are all on there way out (I sure hope blogs go to, I really don't care about 99.99999999999% of what is going on in lives of 99.999999999% of the people online- I digress).  We are in the beginning of the transition.  My kids all had to Carry very heavy backpacks (very bad for your back) full of books to school and that ticks me off greatly.  Whether it is the publishers strangle hold on the state schools system or some conspiracy, it's STUPID. Wasting all those trees when most of the kids have Iphones that could download the books.  I get most of my music via Emusic.com.  $10 per month and I get 40 mp3 tunes from their expanding library - not the most popular stuff but great for me.  I've been telling my wife for years to stop buying Videos and now DVDs.  I've been renting from Netflix (many instructional drum videos) and now streaming legal videos and don't think there is any need for me to fill up cabinets and boxes with the stuff.  We also get cable with more channels than I have time to watch. The future however is a utility service. To have electric, gas, phone service in the past was not an entitlement - now it seems that it's a basic right. Of course they want you to think that so everyone is required to pay... Eventually, TV, News, Music, Education... You will pay a service provider and get everything over your network pipeline.  Microsoft has been adding 10,000 servers a month to data centers in the US and Europe partly because you won't be buying their software, you'll be renting it.  Of course having a magazine laying around when you take a dump is convenient now but is quickly going to become a thing of the past.  

Live music. There will always be a market for skilled musicians playing good music at local events but it may never again be a lucrative career so many. The phenomena of the mega star, the huge stadium concert, etc is really a modern invention (Elvis??).  So is the working studio musician making a big salary.  I'm not saying it will go away entirely but I wouldn't be surprised if the studio work is almost entirely replaced by machines and big live shows essentially fade away and become events experienced on your living room couch.  

Many of you making a living in the biz have to deal with the present (paying rent) and the future (what's around the corner) and my heart goes out to you.  It's a very tough gig.  I have to deal with this in my business and it keeps me up at night and I'm in a fairly stable industry.  My hope is that we (as a society) don't forget how great it is to hear live music played by skilled pros.  This of course requires that we are able to keep a standard of living that enables us to pay you guys.

Thanks eardrum... this is all great and right on. I don't have kids but I have access to plenty:) My girlfriends kids and all my nieces, nephews etc. you are totally correct.

Part of the reason I think is the internet has allowed people to like what they like.
To be more clear.. when radio ruled the world or the US programmers (and now Clear Channel) put music in categories, Rock & Roll, Jazz, Country, R&B. Classical. This helps market it to consumers. Many musicians know that if you don't fit comfortably into a category it is hard to get signed and/or radio play.

Each of those main genres has since been broken down in to more and more specialized sub-genres, now there is Metal, Death Metal, Speed metal, Country Pop, Country Rock, Smooth Jazz, Swing, BeBop, Hard Bop, New Age, Fusion, Progressive, Funk, Hip Hop, Rap, Down Tempo (???)....on and on. They all have their fans but are smaller or more specialized groups.

Side note-I had a discussion with someone about the "star" thing. They told me that writers like Ernest Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald enjoyed a life like many of today's rock stars during the 20s and 30s. The movie business came along and changed that. Fitzgerald found movie work at MGM degrading but he needed it so he wrote and worked on scripts ... pretty interesting, if nothing else. Also before recordings "sheet music" was the big seller. People would buy sheet music and have real musicians perform it.

How many people here have used or use iChat? Well heck, Bart is doing it right here. The last Buddy Rich concert was streamed...beats the price of a plane, hotel and tickets.

Sorry to be all over the place but it is all tied together.

Thanks again



Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: donelk on December 15, 2008, 09:23 PM
OK, here's an idea. I know a guy locally who is making a living. He is doing different stuff than you guys. He is a marching percussion pro. He does clinics, camps, school stuff, judging contests, publishing, etc.  He's been able to keep it going for over 25 years.

His wife is also a school music teacher. He's raised several kids and lives a middle class life.

http://www.zoominfo.com/Search/ReferencesView.aspx?PersonID=39076926

His strength is relationships with educators of all levels. His publishing provides passive income. He writes percussion stuff for student performers and school percussion (both marching and concert-style stuff). Also, he is a low-tech guy. He does have a MySpace page, but not much else. Oh... one of his kids did a simple website for the summer camps.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: dizz on December 15, 2008, 09:46 PM
I dont have much I can add to this very interesting thread but when I was waiting for a friend today, I had NPR on the radio.   You can hear the segment here: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=96284161

Click "Listen Now"

When I heard this, I thought about when I was reading this thread the previous evening.  This guy doesnt create any music.  He snags/mixes samples from pop songs.  --Without permission no-less

Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 15, 2008, 10:00 PM
I've been reading this thread and thinking... a lot.

I wish I had valuable input to this thread. I guess my only contribution is to ask... Do you still enjoy what you are doing? What would you do if not music?

Great question...
I do for sure but, as Chris mentioned there are some drawbacks that I am less and less excited about as I get older. Traveling all the time and a few others... of course it still depends on the situation. Outside of music I personally am interested in web design, video editing and Green technologies.

The reason for this post is research. I found an article awhile back.
http://www.downbeat.com/default.asp?sect=stories&subsect=story_detail&sid=503

It is called The Jazz Scene Today.
the first time i read it I missed the date at the top... check it out.


Thanks Don and Dizz...
Let me point out that I own a home with a studio in Los Angeles. I did this all playing and teaching drums plus some composing. I see it all changing though.. quickly and I would like not only to stay on top of it for myself but for people I teach. I don't mind putting this out there as I think so many could benefit.

I still haven't read much about the local scenes here.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 15, 2008, 10:17 PM

When I heard this, I thought about when I was reading this thread the previous evening.  This guy doesnt create any music.  He snags/mixes samples from pop songs.  --Without permission no-less

Amazingly ballsy...
"Fair Use" according to Bill Clinton's Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998 is a 30 second clip of low quality. This guy's attitude is ..well..
It will be interesting to see what happens...especially if he has a hit song.
He has sampled the Carpenters, Dianna Ross and Metallica. Too much to go into.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 15, 2008, 10:21 PM
  This guy doesnt create any music.  He snags/mixes samples from pop songs.  --Without permission no-less

I do think he 'creates' music, but it's surely stealing. he is a prime example of what Frank is talking about.
He (Greg Gillis, aka 'Girl Talk') has been able to afford to leave his dayjob by making collages of other people's recordings. he says he's covered by fair use laws, but I can't see what the 'fair use' is.
The honest fact is, his art would be impossible legally because it would take too long to get permission to use all the samples and it would be too expensive.
It's kind of another example of cheap music replacing paid for music.
Hire someone like Frank to play funky beats all over your record, or sample lots of beats for free. The way Gillis is doing it, Frank and we other drummers who want a career in music all miss out.

Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 16, 2008, 11:30 AM
Actually, I don't think 'fair use' is covered under this scenario because 'fair use' almost always applies to educational applications. I'd love to hear what ASCAP thinks about this. It took them years to catch up with all the theft that occurred in hip hop in the 90s, but they did extract some money for the original artist. If the song is based on the identifiable hook of another song -- Vanilla Ice's Ice Ice Baby, for example -- the U.S. courts have been consistent in calling that copyright infringement. Of course, on the flip side, all the sampling resurrected Mike Clark's career because everyone learned he was the drummer who was being so often sampled. Gadd's 50 Ways beat has been sampled and re-mixed some 40 times in pop music.

Frank, composing is still very lucrative if you can get the work. It's a stay-at-home job that provides much more long-term, stable income if you can get the right gigs and you have an ear for a hook. You definitely understand complex composition. If that kind of stuff makes you happy, I can't imagine why you wouldn't pursue it more. I always assume someone in your position gets the itch to just play, and being a full-time composer basically means putting down the sticks ... it's definitely time intensive and will drain your creative juices.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: chilledbongo on December 16, 2008, 11:39 AM
OK I guess I AM old(er), but there are some very fancy CD stores near me and I shop at them regularly.
When I get the CD home I live with it for a while, then convert my favourite tracks to iTunes so I can listen to the music around the house or on my iPod.

Regarding the demise of CD and DVD, I agree it's because it is hardware. Don't forget hardware is an extra cost that isn't incurred by conversion to online download.
I'm sure record companies and software producers would love to see the back of the CD because it costs a lot of money to buy the disc, have it burned and have the accompanying artwork and text designed and printed.

i guess the physical blank cd is an 'extra cost,' but it can only amount to fractions of pennies in bulk. i realize that adds up, but the can that soup comes in is an 'extra cost' too. but it's a necessary part of the product.

as we know, music and everything related is a cyclical industry. what's old usually becomes new again, sooner or later. i expect that to be the case with everything deemed old hat today, i.e., cds, albums, bands with actual musicians instead of computers and tracks, recordings of actual music as played and sung, not computer 'corrected' in the studio etc etc

i expect some major improvements in mp3 players, or a replacement for the execrable mp3 format sooner or later. meanwhile, im not throwing out my cds, as i stupidly did with my huge vinyl hoard about a decade ago. how i wish i had that back today! along with my circa 1982 linn-sondek turntable, state of the art then and now.

fyi, amazon sells mp3s at twice the fidelity of itunes and at much lower cost, usually 79 cents per track and as low as $5 per album. they play on apple players and make itunes look like the consumer rip-off that it is.




Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 16, 2008, 01:14 PM
i guess the physical blank cd is an 'extra cost,' but it can only amount to fractions of pennies in bulk. i realize that adds up, but the can that soup comes in is an 'extra cost' too. but it's a necessary part of the product.

By far, the biggest cost of any CD is the marketing behind it. That's not something that will change, at least in terms of real dollars and its impact on the cost of the product. But there are many costs associated with making a CD that aren't involved with digital distribution:

- Printing
- Distribution (a MASSIVE cost)
- Liner notes

If a CD costs $18 U.S., that's probably $7 of the cost right there.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: KevinD on December 16, 2008, 01:18 PM
Actually, I don't think 'fair use' is covered under this scenario because 'fair use' almost always applies to educational applications.

Speaking of fair use of samples, this type brought back memories of this novelty song that came out when I was about 10 (someone did some clever video editing for YouTube)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CexWaeZnHvk 

Is this the first "sampled" song? I wonder if there were any issues over it?
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 16, 2008, 02:09 PM
I do think he 'creates' music, but it's surely stealing. he is a prime example of what Frank is talking about.-----------
The honest fact is, his art would be impossible legally because it would take too long to get permission to use all the samples and it would be too expensive.
It's kind of another example of cheap music replacing paid for music.
Hire someone like Frank to play funky beats all over your record, or sample lots of beats for free. The way Gillis is doing it, Frank and we other drummers who want a career in music all miss out.

Thanks Chris...there are many musicians on this board that could provide that service, not the least of which is yourself.

It isn't only drummers losing out it is every instrumentalist. I don't have a problem with what he is doing creatively but I do have a problem with his BS "Fair Use" argument. THAT is the whole reason I started on my own little campaign to educate some people via the internet.

I have tried to have this same conversation on another board and it didn't go well at all.

This Girl Talk guy sites "NegativLand" as an influence.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Negativland#The_U2_record_incident

Negativland was sued by Island records for a variety of copyright violations and it nearly ended them.

BTW you can hear the chorus of the Carpenters "Close to You"...didn't Burt Bacharach write that? It would be interesting to hear his views on Girl Talk's "Fair Use" argument. This guy is comparing what he does to actually playing an instrument...??? Really?

I totally get what he is doing. He will get a lot of publicity when the lawsuits start streaming in.

I embrace the art aspect of this and absolutely hate his attitude.

Side Bar- when I produced Tecopa Moon from my album I created collages in the intro and under the drum solo. These were made from "original" samples from myself and the other musicians. It isn't hard to do. Learn how to play a couple freakin chords, hire a guitar player, reverse and manipulate "that". To take a popular recording that cost someone else to produce and write and have the balls to say "I don't ask permission and I don't pay for the rights" is messed up and he "knows" that.

Anyway... Matt. I love writing. It is as enjoyable to me as playing drums. I have had all of China Ranch accepted by a licensing firm for TV and Film. nothing has been placed yet but those things can take a little time. I am looking into some other areas as well.

This post isn't as much for me as it is for all of us. I am convinced that we will need to reinvent to some degree in the Music Business 2.0. Drummers are energetic and resourceful. We can't play solo at a piano bar. There are some opportunities obstacles with today's technology plus misguided and/or malicious attitudes toward intellectual property and basic rights of creative professionals.

My original purpose was research for an article I wanted to submit to Bill Miller...I am so bummed about his passing.

I want to create some lists. Ways to make it work in the new music business. This isn't about doom and gloom.

The subjects:
a. Changes in the Industry,
b. Opportunities AND Obstacles,
c. Solutions and how to develop a game plan that is appropriate for:

1. your skill level
2. your goals (pro, hobby, side job, pure fun)
3. your age and personal commitments etc.

Side Note 2# - I have had students that want to go pro. After we talked I find out he has a wife and a baby.... sorry that changes everything. I believe you can do whatever you set out to do but I would be reckless as a teacher to not point out the hurdles and sacrifices that you may have to make.

Michael Phelps was on The Colbert Repor recently. 14 career gold medals at 23 yo.
He mentioned a 5 year period where he swam "every day" 365 days a year for 5 years. He also pointed out the the American team actually put more hours in that any of the other teams and that he would "not" be going for 8 gold in the next olympics... he is kicking back a little:)

I have had people ask me in regards to my drumming "how do you do that?" "got any cheats?" etc.
It is all about how much you are willing to sacrifice to get to where you want to go.
Sorry if I got off track.

BTW if you see pirated product online and don't know what to do here is a link.
http://www.riaa.com/reportpiracy.php

I don't think the riaa handled the Napster thing very well but, they can probably help make it a little more difficult for the misguided fans out there who have no idea what "fair" is and you can remain anonymous if you want.





Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 17, 2008, 04:42 PM
Funny...sort of.
I have been suggesting that everyone give music as Christmas presents this year, it's cheap, easy and helps at the same time. I bought my girlfriend's 13 yo son a copy of Led Zepplin 4...he loves it.  I got this email today from a friend of mine. Someone is circulating this for real.
The response is not mine. This is the email as I received it this morning.
Check it out and lemeno what you think. It fits into one of the "obstacles" we face.

A Great example of the "not getting it" mentality.

BTW...the guy doin' the splainin' is a pro that makes his living as a musician.

*******************************************************************

My friend just got this email from someone he didn't even know, read it and then see my translation afterwards - I'm trying to get him to give me "Randy's" address to send it to him - boy, would I like to have an idiot like this alone in a room, I'd love to do some forceful 'splainin' to him. Forward this to anyone that you know that regularly steals music - just because it's not illegal doesn't make it right - Doug:
-------------
Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and Happy and Safe Holiday Season.
 
This is also a reminder to urge each of you and your friends NOT TO GIVE MUSIC CD's AS CHRISTMAS PRESENTS, this year,  or if you do give CD's, make sure that they are not produced by Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) members.  For the past 5 years, the RIAA has been suing its fans in Federal District Court.  It is our turn to remind them, (Via a Grass Roots E-mail, and a sting in the pocket book), that music is for everyone, and that Greed should not dictate how we listen to it, play it, or where we store it. (Personal Computer, I-Pod, Jump Drive, or MP3 Player)   Listening to music is not a crime.
 
Please pass this on to as many people as you know.  Get the message out. Support Independent Music Artist, and send the RIAA a message. 
 
I hope I don't sound like a Scrooge, but when the RIAA comes acting like Big Brother, you need to stand up.      Thanks, Randy
-------------------(simple translation that any moron should be able to understand)------

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and Happy and Safe Holiday Season.
 
This is also a reminder to urge each of you and your friends NOT TO GIVE FOOD AS CHRISTMAS PRESENTS, this year,  or if you do give FOOD, make sure that they are not marketed by any large grocery stores.  For the past 5 years, the large grocery stores have been actually suing its patrons that take food from their stores without paying in Federal District Court.  It is our turn to remind them, (Via a Grass Roots E-mail, and a sting in the pocket book), that food is for everyone, and that Greed should not dictate that we actually pay for it, how we chew it, or when we eat it. (now or later)   Eating food is not a crime.
 
Please pass this on to as many people as you know.  Get the message out. Support farmers who are independently wealthy and like to dig in the dirt for fun and just give food away, and send the large grocery stores a message. 
 
I hope I don't sound like a Scrooge, but when people actually expect to be paid for their labor, you need to stand up - as long as I myself continue to be paid for whatever it is that I do.      Thanks, your friend, a person that can't understand the most basic of economic concepts!
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: eardrum on December 18, 2008, 01:27 AM
That reply is perfect.....
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 18, 2008, 04:51 AM
I would love these music consumers who are so free spirited about the cost of legal purchases to have to make a living out of music in 2009.
No job in an office, no social security, no money from drug deals. Just an income purely from making and /or playing music.
I guarantee they would become hardcore RIAA supporters within a couple of months.
 ;)
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Zappa-fan on December 18, 2008, 07:12 AM
A bit later in my life I became involved with the art of drumming and making music. I question myself sometimes, if I had started playing earlier on (and if I had the talent) did I want to become a professional musician.
I discussed this topic with my drum teacher. He knows quit a few colleagues that switched profession, because they simply couldn't make a living as a musician. But I question if it is all to blame on piracy. In this discussion I'm missing the role of the record companies. So I want to make a (blunt) assertion. I don't know if it is true.


Before piracy got global attention the prices of CD (popular new releases) here in Holland / Western Europe costed about €22 euros. Music sales dropped and in the end also the prices. A CD costs now around €15. The vision of a record company is making (a lot of) money on short term and not creating a steady and healthy business. The piracy problem is a reaction against the way too high prices. In other words and less judgemental I'm wondering what the role and responsibility is of the record companies with respect to piracy. BTW I haven't found any scientifically figures on piracy, comparing by year.  

There is something in between a legal purchased copy and piracy. If I rent a movie, it will cost me a fifth or less than the actual price at a store. If I go to the city library it Will cost my annual library subscription to loan the "Art of boogaloo" (actually did that, and many more). But if I had copied his book I would have violated the copyright law, but by reading it I had "mentally" copied his book. And so on ....


Last year the newspapers here in Holland wrote that the government stopped the "war" against piracy. It was impossible. Reasing taxes on blank DVDs wasn't a believable option.  

And also got intrigued now Joe Satriani has sued Cold Play. :-\. This might be an example where the line between piracy and legal copying is thin. I'm interested in the outcome of the law suit.

A top-down approach is a necessary condition. I think the business model needs to be changed. Fair prices, fair royalties. The increasing social interdependency's due to up come of the internet (the current status I think is just the beginning) requires international law. E.g. China doesn't recognize the copyright laws of another nation. A bottom-up approach i.e. musicians taking things in their own hand. I really hope it works for them on the long term.

Rene





 
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Jim P on December 18, 2008, 04:24 PM
There are people who are making a nice living in the percussion field even here in Central New York.  The key is that they play a variety of percussion not just drum set. The drum set is way to limiting as to it's usage/ability to secure steady work.  To make a consistant living you have to be able to play marimba/mallets, set, hand percussion, timp, and marching percussion both battery and pit.  As well as be able to conduct a musical group. Between the playing(from clubs to symphony) and teaching(both private and in schools) there are people making a living every day in the percussion field.  The key is the versatility. 
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 18, 2008, 05:41 PM
But question I it is it all to blame on piracy. In this discussion I'm missing the role of the record companies.

There are many factors at play. I don't think anyone should blame the current malaise solely on pirating. But here is a big point....... that doesn't legitimize illegal copying or piracy. It's no excuse.
I think CD's were a little too expensive a few years ago, especially in the rest of the world compared to the U.S. Now they are probably too cheap. At least the price of recorded music is too little to support much but the very commercial end of the market (old established bands and the products of reality tv - Idol etc).

Quote
 
And also got intrigued now Joe Satriani has sued Cold Play. :-\ ??? This might be an example where the line between piracy and legal copying is thin. I'm interested in the outcome of the law suit.
[/quote]

This has nothing to do with the subject I'm afraid.
Plagiarism has been around since the dawn of music.
In this case, the two pieces of music are highly similar.
It's possible Coldplay wrote their piece without ever having heard Satriani's and the closeness is completely accidental. It's also possible the Coldplay songwriters heard the Satriani piece and it entered their subconscious.  Again, a rather accidental copying of the previous work.
It's possible Coldplay out and out ripped off the Satriani piece, but this would be highly unusual with two high profile artists involved.
As I said though, nothing to do with piracy and the future of the music business.

Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 19, 2008, 12:08 AM
There are people who are making a nice living in the percussion field even here in Central New York.  The key is that they play a variety of percussion not just drum set. The drum set is way to limiting as to it's usage/ability to secure steady work.  To make a consistant living you have to be able to play marimba/mallets, set, hand percussion, timp, and marching percussion both battery and pit.  As well as be able to conduct a musical group. Between the playing(from clubs to symphony) and teaching(both private and in schools) there are people making a living every day in the percussion field.  The key is the versatility. 

I agree. My friends that work like crazy here, do a lot of shows and play a multitude of instruments. The difference is they "never" go on the road and though they are super adept at their instruments they seldom write anything of their own.

It is just an observation, not a judgement.

I have a few friends that teach and/or are heads of their college departments. It is a great way to go but not everyone is cut out for that. I have a 23 yo student that is really gifted and smart. I would like to see him go back to school and do exactly what you mentioned...it isn't in his heart.. he wants to Rock.

Jim...you are in Central New York and possess infinite wisdom...I must know you correct?:)

It is great advice for sure and I appreciate it.
Everyone should listen.
The key is "certainly" versatility.

Thank you.





Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 19, 2008, 01:22 AM

There is something in between a legal purchased copy and piracy. If I rent a movie, it will cost me a fifth or less than the actual price at a store. If I go to the city library it Will cost my annual library subscription to loan the "Art of boogaloo" (actually did that, and many more). But if I had copied his book I would have violated the copyright law, but by reading it I had "mentally" copied his book. And so on ....


Last year the newspapers here in Holland wrote that the government stopped the "war" against piracy. It was impossible. Reasing taxes on blank DVDs wasn't a believable option.  


Wow...Well Chris handled some of that really well.

Rene
I totally appreciate this. Let me give you my personal perspective and experience.
I am not a label. I play, teach and write music for my living. I have been signed to a major and had some indie deals etc.
After a lot of research and thinking I released China Ranch on my own label. I am certain I could have got a label to subsidize the project to some degree but, I wanted total artistic freedom...that was my call. What I didn't see coming was the current attitude of entitlement of some on the internet.

I can't tell you what it feels like to release something you worked really hard on and find out people you don't know in countries you have never been to etc. (fans) decide to give it away under the guise of "Fair Use" and "Promotion" .. without ever bothering to ask etc.

I recently went to Last.fm to start a page and I was already there! someone from Poland uploaded a picture another from Brazil uploaded some tracks... I thanked them and sent 6 unreleased tracks because they are fans and I think they thought they were helping me...and maybe they are. I am accessible. Run it by me.

Where is my say in this? I mean really. Shouldn't "I" be the one giving it away? Shouldn't it be "my" choice? it's "my" music.

I am glad "Art of Boogaloo" is in your local library (not some of my best work btw).
Now that is an example of "sharing" there is one single thing being used among two or more. Plus my publisher (Mel Bay) and I have given permission for the book to be used in this way. We "the man" do give back. Mel Bay is also online weekly asking that scanned books be taken down from sites that have books available for free download.

Definitions;
Sharing; use, occupy, or enjoy (something) a single thing jointly with another or others

Copies, Copied
make a similar or identical version of; reproduce


copyright; the exclusive legal right, given to an originator or an assignee to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material, and to authorize others to do the same.

Permission; consent; authorization


BTW "the man" that everyone hates so much is who provides such things as Public Libraries, Schools, Parks, Pools, Fire Departments, Post Offices and yes Police. As well as a gazillion other things and services... Where would we be without some laws. It would be the Wild West again and that is what is happening on the internet in regards to "file stealing". I need to reroof my garage. What do you think the chances of me getting it done for free? It is a much smaller investment than making an album and i deserve a new roof...

Respect, sense of fair play etc etc.

If I sound like I am hammering you Rene I apologize...it isn't personal. I have presented this argument so many ways i am tired of it.

Music is very cheap these days... most of it it is free to listen to. There is a ton of great stuff to check out. Did the major record companies have a role in the current situation...possibly yes but, I am not totally qualified to answer that. It is a combination of things.

It is no one's right or business to conclude who had a bad deal with what company or they have enough money etc. ... I love "Listening to music isn't a Crime" what the..??#%@??. that is an argument!?

Why is it that some people feel entitled to own the files or a copy of the CD without so much as doing anything to truly help promote the artist? Not a positive review, a buy link, .. how about helping hook up gigs in their country?? some teamwork would be nice.

"I" am not "the man". It sucks to feel like "the man" when all you are trying to do is keep people from raiding the garden that you have been caring for all season.

But you know what? your country is correct...you can't stop it...meaning you can't stop others from stealing. You can only change yourself.

Some great feedback...thanks Rene and Jim.
Peace,
Frank

Sorry this was soooo long.

It will be condensed into one of the obstacles faced by today's recording artists/record labels

Here is a link I was just made aware of. This guy is a breath of fresh air (not)
http://news.cnet.com/8301-13506_3-10127017-17.html

Like I have said earlier... it makes me feel like packing up and calling it a day.
I recently found out that Kazaa one of the big P2P software programs is trying to sue Google (I heard) because their software is being pirated...hmmm

Also have you ever noticed that you rarely hear a musician/composer speak out "against" DRM or the RIAA. Ever wonder why?
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 19, 2008, 03:15 PM
Someone my age (aka mature of mind) on another drum forum offers to burn CD's for other members, and offers to share software free of charge.
You want to step in and say something, but you don't want to seem like the grinch that killed Christmas.  :-\
Having worked alongside some nice guys who's software product is often illegally shared, it saddens me to see software copying so openly offered on forums similar to this.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 19, 2008, 04:04 PM
Someone my age (aka mature of mind) on another drum forum offers to burn CD's for other members, and offers to share software free of charge.
You want to step in and say something, but you don't want to seem like the grinch that killed Christmas.  :-\
Having worked alongside some nice guys who's software product is often illegally shared, it saddens me to see software copying so openly offered on forums similar to this.

Encore, my favorite transcription software went out of business because of piracy as I wrote earlier.

and you become the a-hole "the man" when you point out that they are breaking the law and pounding nails in their own coffin.

I own all of Spectrasonics Virtual Instruments. Their sounds and sample libraries are superb. They get their libraries ripped off all the time. They spend small fortunes creating this stuff. Now you have to be Astrophysicist to install it on your computer and the price goes up.

It is one thing to pass a copy to a friend and a whole other level when you make it available for complete strangers worldwide. It is the epitome of "not cool'

Google "death of the music Industry" sometime.

I am stepping away from this subject until after Christmas...

Who needs help with their bass drum pedal!?:)
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Zappa-fan on December 20, 2008, 03:47 AM
FB: Your not hammering, I totally agree on what you were saying. Even before the start of this threat!

After FB reply and reading over and over the entire threat, I signed up for the I-tunes store, just to see how it works and downloaded for 0.99 euro cents per track ($1.30) a couple of China Ranch tunes ;). Hits: you can pay per track, fair prices (or not??), downloaded tracks are forseen with some measures to prevent illegal sharing. Misses: as far as I have seen there you can't listen to a short sound track for every tune. I want to know what I'm going to buy. (Here in Holland) youngsters from 13 to 18 need parents approval to sign up. That it understandable, but I think the adolescent group is a group where "illegal sharing" is quit common. Finally, if you become a I-Tunes plus customer (or what so ever) you can distribute your downloaded copy without any limitation. :-\


I think in the end things will change. Piracy will never be stopped, but will be brought back at an acceptable level: It is one thing to pass a copy to a friend and a whole other level when you make it available for complete strangers worldwide. .

Hopes for the future: Reliable enough technology will be developed to "stop" sharing. The audience is "educated", but also the business culture (which is conservative by nature) must adapt.


Regards René
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Lou on December 20, 2008, 06:04 AM
After FB reply and reading over and over the entire threat, I signed up for the I-tunes store, just to see how it works and downloaded for 0.99 euro cents per track ($1.30) a couple of China Ranch tunes ;).

I think in the end things will change. Piracy will never be stopped, but will be brought back at an acceptable level:

Hopes for the future: Reliable enough technology will be developed to "stop" sharing. The audience is "educated", but also the business culture (which is conservative by nature) must adapt.

Zappa-fan ... next time you might want to save some money ... I payed $8.99 for the whole album or 0.99 cents a track if you only want one or a couple. I think i bought it on DigStation but you can buy it on Amazon for that price too.
I am curious where the $0.31 a track difference goes ... is it the artist? I doubt that very much.

On the piracy issue I have to disagree, I think it will never be brought back to an acceptable level (whatever standard of acceptable level will be agreed upon, if at all). It is an ethical thing and as long as internet users can enjoy the comfort of anonymity the internet provides I think by nature most people will forget ethics and go for the cheap (free) and easy.

But there's another point ... here in the Netherlands, downloading music or movies isn't illegal ... but sharing is. Downloading from newsgroups (a major major source) is OK, participating in torrent networks sharing copyrighted material isn't.

And then there's a third issue and that is (organized) crime. Having worked in the high tech crime environment for almost a decade I have been involved in some piracy cases. Just one example (some time ago) is a group here in the Netherlands that would create a top-40 CD every month, drive to Bulgaria or Spain in a small truck and come back with tens of thousands CD's they would sell within a week. If I remember correct they paid 50 cents a copy, selling them all within a week at 20-fold the cost. Under the bed of mom we found a suitcase with over a million ... house hold money she explained  ::).

I'm afraid I don't share your hopes as long as the industry as a whole (music and hardware) cannot agree on standards, as long as there is no harmonized legislation and also because I think the general public just doesn't care. But maybe being a cop for a long time has made me a bit negative ... I hope I'm wrong.

To conclude ... Frank I love China Ranch ... looking forward to your next project.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Zappa-fan on December 20, 2008, 06:33 AM
Quote
Zappa-fan ... next time you might want to save some money ... I payed $8.99 for the whole album or 0.99 cents a track if you only want one or a couple. I think i bought it on DigStation but you can buy it on Amazon for that price too.

That's why: fair prices (or not??), can elaborate on that, but won't do that .... yet.


Quote
And then there's a third issue and that is (organized) crime. Having worked in the high tech crime environment for almost a decade I have been involved in some piracy cases. ...................... If I remember correct they paid 50 cents a copy, selling them all within a week at 20-fold the cost. Under the bed of mom we found a suitcase with over a million ... house hold money she explained

I mentioned earlier if piracy has gotten worse since Internet emerged.... still don't know ....

Quote
I'm afraid I don't share your hopes as long as the industry as a whole (music and hardware) cannot agree on standards,

Like living in Utopia ;D, That's why I questioned the role of the industry. It might be an prerequisite for the future to get people to pay for the music..... ???

René


Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: -chris on December 20, 2008, 08:42 AM
Personal Programming is the direction of the business. What you want and when you want it. Trying to make money from the world’s largest billboard (the internet) is tough especially when the world already thinks a majority of it is free. Though once they get over the piracy hurdle so that once when you view something it’s not all over You tube; you’re going to be able to go see U2 live on the internet in Dublin right in your living room or I should say Media Room (for a fee of course).  One of the last shows I played at CBGB’s my wife was home (babysitting) and she got to see the whole show right from her laptop. Proof to the Drummer Café is the most recent Buddy Rich Show that was on the Drum Channel via the internet. This channel gave us a free show to spark an interest and now it will be something one will have to pay to view again.  It will then be available “On Demand” for the world to see at anytime, hence “Pay per View”. 

New music is a tough sell, no one is going to take a chance on an “X” factor, and no one is going to buy something they don’t know anything about. It’s going to be a tough road to get people to sign on to your programming but I think it will still have to start with a Grass Roots campaign via your good ole mailing list  or I should say e mailing list.  Getting out there, performing and selling; that will never change.

We’re in a tough time; no one wants to spend money they don’t have. 

Wow I mentioned “tough” a lot in this post.

Regarding newspapers and magazines, I don’t think they will be replaced anytime soon. I still like to read things outside the internet. I don’t like looking at a screen all day; I rather print out a large article and read it someplace else.  I’m not about to take my laptop into the bathroom…lol.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 20, 2008, 10:30 AM
Wow I mentioned “tough” a lot in this post.

Yeah...you did:)

There is an interesting article in the New Yorker this week on the plight of the newspapers. Tribune has filed Chapter 11 etc. There are other problems with the Tribune deal however. The article points to a failure to move to the net soon enough as well as the new "free" standard and the ramifications of that.

Here is a quote from James Surowiecki (Dec 22 The New Yorker.com)
"Soon enough, we are going to start getting what we pay for, and we may find out just how little that is".
We want access to everything, we want it now, and we want it for free
That is a consumer's dream, but eventually that dream will collide with reality.

When "_*fill in the blank_" profits vanish, eventually so will the product".

*newspapers, music, tv, etc.

This is a good reason to join as a VIP on DrummerCafe. Let's keep this going.




Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Paicey on December 21, 2008, 02:14 PM
Business talk scares me. I just want to play and have fun. Unfortunately (for me) you have to deal with this. This issue is the abominable snowman and like Ukon and Rudolph i want to hide. Somehow we need to pull the abominable snowmans chompers so we can be happy.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 21, 2008, 04:10 PM
I don't think it is scary at all (well maybe a little) .

It is different, challenging and exciting. It could make things better ultimately, but no one is sure yet.

For instance;
a positive scenario.

Your band is playing a club. You are no longer limited to the people that physically attend because the club you are playing is streaming worldwide via the internet (for a fee). Your band makes extra $ from the subscribers. Everyone wins. People get to enjoy a band in Boston without buying plane tickets etc. Your band can now build a fan base in Poland, Austria, Minnesota etc.

If the Railroad had understood the fact that they were in the transportation business instead of the train business they would not have suffered as an industry. They let other companies beat them with trucks, busses, planes etc.

All I am saying is  "Change is Coming" not "The Sky is Falling".

Thanks Paicey
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Mark Pedersen on December 21, 2008, 08:33 PM
I guess I know how to grind a conversation (or in this case a thread) to a halt.

Carry on.......... :-X
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 22, 2008, 11:20 PM
sorry..
No I thought it was interesting. I went to my first Christmas party last night and have had a headache all day:)

The DJ thing is a problem and a possible opportunity. I have known some drummers who have partnered with a DJ. A duo; live drums playing with a DJ.

Isn't that what Travis Barker was doing when he got hurt?

I really like Jojo Mayer's Nerve
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpAx9J4lM4Q
I really dig what he does and I bet this would be way more popular than a DJ on his own if people were exposed to it more.

Kundalini Boombox
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5h2DgCluL0&feature=related

Tony Verderosa
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQcJsb4P60I

If the DJ is playing classic rock that is a whole other thing. You need to figure out how to get them to hire your classic rock band instead.

What I find interesting about DJs is that sometimes these guys will get as much or more money than a full band. If there is so much of it going on in your area check it out and talk to the club owners. Try to see what the attraction is. Is it financial?, the set list?. Your band might want to invest in a mirror ball and sub woofers.

Don't give up on this thread if I don't respond right away...it is a crazy week.

speaking of which..

Side Note- Purposely off subject - Just to lighten this up

Whenever I start complaining about living in Los Angeles something like this happens.

I was invited to a Christmas party last night at Mitch Forman's house. There is always a jam session. I decided I wasn't going to sit in no matter what. As Melonie and I were walking up to the house I heard the band playing and thought ... man that is really burning.

When we got inside I saw why. Mitch Forman on piano, Ric Fierabracci on bass, Mike Miller on guitar, Bob Sheppard on tenor, Walt Fowler on flugelhorn, Brad Dutz on percussion and Dave Weckl on drums,

It was ridiculous. I haven't picked up the sticks in a month (as I mentioned somewhere, I am taking a break) My drummer friend Craig Pilo was playing some light funk versions of Christmas tunes and at one point he stood up and gave me the sticks...I thought ok, I can do this.

I sat in with the same guys except Stan Sargeant former Tonight Show band played bass.. and... they called "Cherokee!!"... I laughed because I thought they were joking, they were not. Mitch counted off..1234 boom...no kidding ...with Weckl there.

I was soaked after one tune...it was fun and Dave was really nice. .. but I thought my heart was going to give out:) and my head is still pounding.
I had to share that...

The lesson here is "don't ever take a break:)"

I did get around to discussing this thread with Craig and Dave. DW said he may release one tune at a time. Digital only, with a playalong version.

Merry Christmas, Happy Everything.. everyone
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: NY Frank on December 23, 2008, 08:42 AM

For instance;
a positive scenario.

Your band is playing a club. You are no longer limited to the people that physically attend because the club you are playing is streaming worldwide via the internet (for a fee). Your band makes extra $ from the subscribers. Everyone wins. People get to enjoy a band in Boston without buying plane tickets etc. ...

I'm looking forward to a world where this is more common.

I'd enjoy that very much, and I believe I'd part with small amounts of cash
to watch.

I have already caught a couple of stellar - live - performances on Ustream,
and I wish there was more of that going on.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 23, 2008, 09:12 AM
Frank, I totally agree with you on Jojo and Nerve. That's where the real "fusion" is happening these days. The problem is playing like Jojo in that environment requires facility demands probably greater than that of a jazz drummer, but if that's what people end up aspiring to, at least we can rest assured that the art of drumming won't die with this generation. (It will more likely be advanced!)

On iTunes ... it's by no means a great deal for the artist, but I think most of them agree it's better than the alternative (digital anarchy).
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 23, 2008, 10:26 AM
Frank, I totally agree with you on Jojo and Nerve. That's where the real "fusion" is happening these days. The problem is playing like Jojo in that environment requires facility demands probably greater than that of a jazz drummer, but if that's what people end up aspiring to, at least we can rest assured that the art of drumming won't die with this generation. (It will more likely be advanced!)

On iTunes ... it's by no means a great deal for the artist, but I think most of them agree it's better than the alternative (digital anarchy).

Actually that band looks pretty easy to pull off since the sound guy is also a member. They do need to haul the mixers however. I wonder why it isn't bigger on a regional level?

If you are an independent, you do better on iTunes than if you are signed to a label. David Byrne's column addresses that. Digital distribution costs between 30 to 40% of your sale. That is if you  own the music totally. Someone like Britney Spears may only get a few cents per track. I get between 60-70 cents. and a penny for a stream... I have been reading that many consumers think .99 is too much to pay for a song. Amazon is now .89 and lala is .79 cents.

Side Note- What I found interesting is I no one ever asked me. I didn't sign up with LaLa but they sell China Ranch for .79 a track. If you join LaLa you get 50 free tracks. You would think that you would be asked if you want your music given away, which is being used to promote LaLa...nope. So besides the pirates you have larger legit companies doing whatever they see fit with music. None of these companies would be anything if it weren't for the content musicians were providing them.
Personally I think..."if we only had a Union"...something.

"Digital Anarchy" ... I may use that Matt.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 23, 2008, 10:31 AM
Actually that band looks pretty easy to pull off since the sound guy is also a member. They do need to haul the mixers however. I wonder why it isn't bigger on a regional level?

I was referring to Jojo's machine-gun fire left hand. Can't imagine playing that style without being able to cop those sixteenth-note snare fills with the left hand. Easy for you, sure, but us mere mortals are pretty much earth-bound. ;)
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 23, 2008, 03:11 PM
I was referring to Jojo's machine-gun fire left hand. Can't imagine playing that style without being able to cop those sixteenth-note snare fills with the left hand. Easy for you, sure, but us mere mortals are pretty much earth-bound. ;)

Oh..no...I can't touch that.

Ok the official Holiday internet blog break time is here...

I will be back in a few days.
Happy Holidays Matt!
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Matt Self (Gaddabout) on December 23, 2008, 05:27 PM
Oh..no...I can't touch that.

Ok the official Holiday internet blog break time is here...

I will be back in a few days.
Happy Holidays Matt!

Just in case no one else knew what we were talking about, check out the video below. Happy Holidays to you, Frank. It's been a joy interacting with you this year!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uf3fpULe6Ig&feature=related
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: eardrum on December 24, 2008, 01:22 AM
..............If you are an independent, you do better on iTunes than if you are signed to a label. David Byrne's column addresses that. Digital distribution costs between 30 to 40% of your sale. That is if you  own the music totally. Someone like Britney Spears may only get a few cents per track. I get between 60-70 cents. and a penny for a stream... I have been reading that many consumers think .99 is too much to pay for a song. Amazon is now .89 and lala is .79 cents.
..................

I've been subscribing to Emusic for quite a while.  It doesn't have the most popular stuff (Britney, etc...) but I don't buy the biggest selling music usually.  $11.99 per month and I get 40 songs each month (that's $.30 per song).  Probably more than 60% is just collecting older stuff, re-issues of older stuff. For example I just downloaded The Complete Modern Jazz Quartet Prestige And Pablo Recordings.  I think it's a great value.  There is some new stuff that comes out. Chick Corea's put some of his latest stuff there.   Haven't found any Frank Briggs there yet???  It seems that there may be some stratification in pricing which makes sense.  More popular, more expensive. 
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Lou on December 24, 2008, 04:32 AM
$11.99 per month and I get 40 songs each month (that's $.30 per song). 

Curious as I am, I went to the site and it seems as they charge customers outside the US (there's a eMusic Europe) differently. I would pay 13.99 Euro for 30 song ... which is $19.49 or $0.65 per song, quite a difference.




Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 24, 2008, 07:17 PM
It is a good deal for some consumers for sure. I haven't submitted to eMusic because it isn't such a great deal for me. There is a lot to look into. How is the quality?
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Jim P on December 25, 2008, 04:51 PM
Frank,

It's funny that Tony Verderosa's name came into this post.  You should contact him about what he does.  Last year at CNY drum day at OCC Tony named YOU as one of his inspirations for getting into the electronic thing. He was at Crane in the 80's and was going to Syracuse to see you when you were doing the 805 thing and were into the electronics at one point.  Your old roommate Rich G. from Rome also talked about you using electronics and writing melodies and playing them. Rich was a classmate of mine at OCC. 

Have a good holiday,

Jim P in Taberg
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Chris Whitten on December 26, 2008, 03:04 PM
Can't imagine playing that style without being able to cop those sixteenth-note snare fills with the left hand.

All the same, you don't have to be Mayer to play with a DJ.
I listen to a lot of electronic (DJ style) music and never listen to Drum & Bass.
There is a ton of downbeat stuff, sampled drum loops etc....
There are drummers playing in some of these bands already.

On the DJ attraction......
Well for one thing, dance music with sounds that couldn't be replicated by real musicians became really cool at one point.
Bar owners wanted to cash in on cool.
The public who were into dance music wanted to hear familiar songs and/or familiar sounds and beats, hence no room for original bands.
I think this scene is receding, but there's no wonder venue owners and promoters loved it. No more bands with multiple members, who turn up late, make too much noise and don't sound as good as their demo tape.
No need for stage crew, multiple mics, or even large PA's.
Just a couple of decks and a medium sized PA. Add one or two DJ's and you have your evening of entertainment.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on December 26, 2008, 07:58 PM
Frank,

It's funny that Tony Verderosa's name came into this post.  You should contact him about what he does.  Last year at CNY drum day at OCC Tony named YOU as one of his inspirations for getting into the electronic thing. He was at Crane in the 80's and was going to Syracuse to see you when you were doing the 805 thing and were into the electronics at one point.  Your old roommate Rich G. from Rome also talked about you using electronics and writing melodies and playing them. Rich was a classmate of mine at OCC. 

Have a good holiday,

Jim P in Taberg

Thanks Jim...I can't believe I have a "day after" Christmas party to go to...but I do.

Tony is a friend of mine although I haven't seen him in a few years.
I actually sold him my old Simmons MTM (midi trigger module) and left all my stuff on it for him.  I am pretty sure I was the first or one of the first to do that tonal thing. I was bringing a guitar tuner to the gigs and pitching my simmons sd5 set and playing chordal drum solos. I had horn hits, alternate mode bass lines, percussion etc in 1982 or 83 or so. I don't remember exactly. I know I had some of the first sds 5, sds 7, MTM units and went to town with them. I did some all electronic clinics also. Alternate mode, eproms and layering,..ahh the good old days.

I never got past the point of it sounding like a bad keyboard player ..at least to me. They broke down a lot also. What Tony does is great. I think he has become the master of this technology.
He is a great player. I had a video of him performing the Black Page on drums and marimba when he was at Crane. Speaking of Rich G. Please tell him about the forum. I haven't talked to him in a decade.

Not to get off subject but I think with some of the new styles out there it makes more sense to have electronics. I am looking into Roland's SP12 and Korg's Kaos Pad. I would probably never go all electronic again. That being said Jojo Mayer is all acoustic and it sounds perfect.




Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: eardrum on December 28, 2008, 03:49 PM
It is a good deal for some consumers for sure. I haven't submitted to eMusic because it isn't such a great deal for me. There is a lot to look into. How is the quality?
Quality is fine. I'm no expert in these matters but for listening on my IPOD or burning to MP3 CDs it's been fine - haven't noticed a difference between what I buy off of ITunes.  I should compare a few identical songs from each site and see if there actually is a difference.  The user interface works well and the reviews and recommendations aren't completely bad.... They have also been adding artists at a good clip.

It's a bummer to hear it's not a good deal for you but I guess if I'm buying at 30 instead of 99 cents per song the artist's cut is smaller.  So this is where the genius comes in an says "we'll make it up in volume"  :P.  It would be nice if there was a good independent rating system for artists to compare how well one method of distribution compares to another. 
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: eardrum on December 28, 2008, 03:52 PM
Curious as I am, I went to the site and it seems as they charge customers outside the US (there's a eMusic Europe) differently. I would pay 13.99 Euro for 30 song ... which is $19.49 or $0.65 per song, quite a difference.


Yow, not sure I would use it for that price.  Is Itunes or Amazon that much more expensive also?
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Lou on December 28, 2008, 04:07 PM
Yow, not sure I would use it for that price.  Is Itunes or Amazon that much more expensive also?

I don't think so, besides ... Amazon doesn't restrict me to a region, therefor I guess I pay the same for MP3's as anyone else. Sometimes books and CD's are cheaper buying them on Amazon UK or Germany, taking the rates for shipping into consideration.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: Plooker68 on December 30, 2008, 04:51 PM
http://magnatune.com/info/why

http://magnatune.com/info/press/coverage/usa_today

http://magnatune.com/info/musicians
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on January 06, 2009, 10:56 PM
http://magnatune.com/info/why

http://magnatune.com/info/press/coverage/usa_today

http://magnatune.com/info/musicians

I only read the first paragraph.. What is sad is that it is so common.
Thank you for these links.
Title: Re: Where is it all going...??
Post by: frankbriggs on January 07, 2009, 03:39 PM
I would like to thank everyone that participated in this discussion.
I do think it is time to call it a day and close this thread.

The purpose was research for an article i am writing on the future of the Music business or The Music Business 2.0. There is a lot to sort through here.

I will post the finished article at a later time.
Thanks!!