Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Who's Killing the Mega-Labels?

Wed, Jan 17, 2007 at 4:59 PM

The normally staid Wall St. Journal reports the record industry is in "freefall." The first week of January's sales are down 18 percent over the same week in 2006. That's a lot.

Why? Well, you can either blame the producer or the consumer. Most of the time, business blames the producer. When Ford stops selling trucks, the Journal blames Ford for making shitty gas guzzlers, not the consumer for buying something else. Contrarily, the recording (and newspaper) industry loves to blame the consumer.

Well, we don't. We think the consumer's right. Music appreciation is at an all-time high in our books. But how do you go about appreciating? That's the market to tap. Here are two legendary articles that blame the producers: one by In Utero producer Steve Albini called "The Problem with Music" ,the other by "At Seventeen" singer Janis Ian called "The Internet Debacle - An Alternate View". -- David Downs


by Janis Ian

* Shortly after this article was turned in, Michael Greene resigned as president of NARAS.

When I research an article, I normally send 30 or so emails to friends and acquaintances asking for opinions and anecdotes. I usually receive 10-20 in reply. But not so on this subject!

I sent 36 emails requesting opinions and facts on free music downloading from the Net. I stated that I planned to adopt the viewpoint of devil's advocate: free Internet downloads are good for the music industry and its artists.

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