You know, I’m only thirty eight and feel so out of touch with the younger crowd when it comes to the music of their generation. But that’s not what bothers me. It seems that the music industry is leaving ME behind. I don’t know if it is the radio business or the big record labels.
With the beginnings of Napster a few years ago and now the maturation of iTunes digital distribution for music, consumers have a choice of what music they listen to and when they listen to it. I have found that my local radio stations are so old school with their limited play lists and hearing the same song fifty times a week doesn’t appeal to me. Again, I’m not sure if it is the record labels not putting out more variety of artists or the radio stations not playing a better mix of the variety that is available?
So technology allows consumers so many methods of listening to the music they want and when they want. The other side of the problem is actually finding new music. By working with the band Lucas McCain, I’m finding that there are a lot of independent distribution outlets out there. One such outlet is CD Baby.Com. We’re selling Lucas McCain’s first CD at CD Baby and lately I find it enjoyable to browse the artists there and listen to an entire CD via the two minute per song samples that are available.
For instance have you ever heard of Triple Nickel, 32 Below or Bastard Sons of Johnny Cash? These bands are great. It is truly sad that the mainstream music business is so far behind. But then again they have a great deal of money invested in their signed acts and if they have too many acts to sell CDs for they just dilute their investment and their marketing message. An analogy I use is it is like being at an outdoor festival with ten performing stages next to each other. On all ten stages the best musical acts are playing simultaneously and although they are all great, it all sounds like unintelligible noise. If you reduce the number down to one band playing you hear very well and understand the music.
So when you start to think logically about the whole mess it makes sense from the big guys perspective. The only problem is that if you stay in that big mansion on the top of the hill, eventually your message gets old and you loose track of what’s going on in the valley below.
So as an independent artist, it takes a lot of work to get the word out and to get a loyal, supporting fan base. As a consumer, there are thankfully many new avenues available to find new artist and new music.
We are indeed living in a time of new freedoms and the future is so bright, I got to wear shades!