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Posts Tagged ‘Internet’

giving back to the independent community…

Saturday, August 1st, 2009

It now seems that major labels Sony Music, Warner Music, EMI and Universal Music no longer have a firm grip on the artist or the industry, and the old model of doing business their way is a thing of the past.

On the forefront of an ever-changing music industry, is Brian Message, manager of the alternative band Radiohead. Brian Message along with co-founders, Adam Driscoll, chief executive of the British media company MAMA Group, and Terry McBride, founder of the Vancouver-based management firm Nettwerk Music Group and former manager of Barenaked Ladies, have united to form the new business venture, Polyphonic. Polyphonic will look to invest in new and rising unsigned artists and then help them create a sound relationship with their audiences over the Internet. Artists will operate like start-up companies, record their own music, and choose outside contractors to handle their publicity, merchandise and touring. The Polyphonic founders plan to invest $300,000 in each band. The firm will then guide the musician and manager who will function a little like the band’s chief executive, to services that will help promote the artist’s online presence.

Polyphonic and similar firms are seen as a risky investment by private investors. For the founders of Polyphonic, giving back to the independent community, and mentoring the new artist or band appears to outweigh that risk. Success is all about giving back. Witnessing the dedication and commitment to the independent community by those that go before you is a valuable lesson in filling the gap between artist and label – a practice we should all remember!

Source: New York Times, 2009/07/22

Music is business…

Monday, July 13th, 2009

To most artists who desire the opportunity to be creative above all else, the business part of it is daunting. To make a living off your music, you have to take on an active role in promoting and managing your own product, just like any other smart business person.

Creative beings are at times overwhelmed with the minutia of their craft’s business dealings, and may often omit – albeit unknowingly, the fine details and small print related to getting music to market or advancing their career. The business of your music is as important to your career, as your art. This is another mantra that should be recalled daily.

It’s not necessary that you develop a critical understanding of the music business at the level of a trained professional, but knowledge of the concepts, and methodologies used to manage the legal, financial, and ethical issues facing the music business professional is empowerment to you as an artist. As your popularity and fan base grows, the need to recruit qualified professionals is more evident. The ability to discern, monitor and manage your team is critical.

In order to assist you in the business of a “do-it-yourself” music career – Web 2.0 professionals are available. Making your own decisions, and learning everything about this exciting and passionate industry runs deep through your veins as a life source. Failing to realize your dreams is not an option for you – being unsuccessful is not in your vocabulary. You are a talented, ambitious soul – excited to let the world hear your art – don’t get lost in the red tape, and don’t give your powerful energy away.

Remember this mantra “The business of your music is as important to your career as your art” – be a savvy, and creative businessperson. Be a well rounded, polished professional, respected among your peers and manage your formula for success!

How to present yourself, your music and your career.

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Planning then crafting a clear strategy before promoting yourself is the first step in a successful music marketing campaign. It’s an exciting and enthusiastic time, but be careful, the internet is a bottomless database pit. Once posted, once said, and twice repeated, bytes of data remain infinitely embedded in the pages of the world wide web. What might be cute, cool or “bad ass” today, could bite you in your bad ass years from now and might not be so cute, cool or earn you any props.

Presenting yourself in a truthful and professional manner is key to developing and packaging your image. “Pretending to be more than you are – Lying in marketing” – is a great article written by Loren Weisman of the Music Think Tank. We may not agree with Mr. Weisman’s “play it safe” underlying theory, but do agree with keeping it real always. Always have confidence and faith in your talent. Accept and honor where you’re at in this journey. Never “Pretend” to possess unsubstantiated “Bling” or to have accomplished the money and the fame before you make it – don’t lie about your assets, if you’re a starving artist, you’re a starving artist, let your fans share with you, your climb to the top. Take charge of all the wonders of technology that’s available to you. Entertain your fans with your charming personality – let them into your career. Human nature gravitates toward the humble, and when the time comes for you to show your edge, your fans will welcome your success with open arms. Mr. Weisman when he states: “A strong professional package and promotional presence goes a very long way while a fake or weak presence will hurt you more than you know.” We’re not even discussing the business aspect – that’s another posting!

The story of a young man known as Souljaboy tellem comes to mind – his “do-it-yourself” marketing campaign built his fan base, his recognition, and he rose to the top by using an honest portrayal of his talent, personality and character. When asked what was the secret of his success, he’s reported as saying he was having fun, and he kept it real. Watch this sample of how this young master continues to reach out to his fans!

Honesty, hard work, taking a few risks, and fine tuning your art, is how to present yourself, your music and your career.

$7,000 Settlement for a 4-Year Piracy Lawsuit

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

Record Companies have finally agreed to accept a settlement of $7,000 from a suburban family in a law suit that spanned over 4 years. Talk about relief! Four record companies accused Patricia Stantangelo of illegally downloading and distributing copyright music. This mother of five from Wappingers New York, claimed she couldn’t have downloaded all that music from the internet because she had no idea how to download music from the internet! She also refused to settle with the RIAA.

The lawsuit against her was dropped. However, they then turned around and sued two of her kids! Michelle, 20, and Robert, 16, were accused of downloading and distributing more than 1,000 songs. Michelle and Robert denied the allegations. The music industry claims a loss of millions of dollars due to illegal downloading, and the companies claimed that Michelle had admitted to the piracy and Robert had been implicated by a family friend.

Jordan Glass, Ms. Stantangelo’s lawyer, is reported as saying that the music industry had no idea that Ms. Stantangelo would fight back against billions of Corporate dollars.

Some relief can be felt knowing a settlement of $7,000, which can be paid in instalments, was perhaps only a fraction of what the RIAA spent on advancing their claims. Though they wouldn’t reveal their actual costs, it’s pretty clear more than $7,000 was incurred in legal expenses in this case of 4 years!

All to fight something that is inevitable, the freedom of music; music lovers getting what they want, when they want it. It is far less expensive to come up with new ways to monetize music instead of fighting to keep old ones that no longer work.

Is Music for free really a good idea?

Monday, May 11th, 2009

Last week we blogged about giving away music as a promotional tool for artists.

We’re further writing about this because it’s becoming common practice. What is all this talk about just giving it away? Well, typically, artists who give away their music generally generate more income than those who don’t. Why? Simple, the general population loves free stuff! Once given a free CD, the consumer listens to it, likes it, and tells a friend. That friend then tells another friend, and so on and so forth. Exposure.
It’s all a part of the number one rule of music business, one that the record industry has forgotten: Hear, Like, Buy. In that order exactly.

Circulating free CDs allows the artist to reach a broader audience, creating a fan base, eventually resulting in sales and popularity! But it isn’t just the music industry that utilizes the “freebie” marketing strategy. Television can be live streamed on the Internet. Movies, music, video games; you name it, the Internet has it. A man by the name of Chris Anderson of the Wall Street Journal is convinced that people will pay to listen to live streamed music from their iPhones. Why? Well, if there is an application for the iPhone a consumer must purchase to listen to live streamed music, most consumers will do it.  A growing number of people depend on their iPhones for all sorts of things, including the Internet. So, what does this mean for the general artist?  What exactly are your rights? How do you protect your slice of the apple pie?

At Pro Soul, We help our artists build a growing audience, earn income even when giving music away, and avoid costly mistakes without giving up any of the rights to their music.

Desperate for a solution to piracy

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

It would seem that the Isle of Man, a small island of 80,000 people between Ireland and Britain, has come up with two new tactics to fight music piracy. 16 years ago, Ireland would punish misdemeanors by a so-called “birching” law, meaning, one would receive Birch wood lashes. Luckily, they have taken kindly to a new approach; defeat. The white flag has been raised regarding piracy in Isle of Man. Unfortunately,  they have instead proposed a new tax that is approximately 1.45$ a week that will be paid directly to the recording companies. This allows the citizens of Dublin, Ireland to download as they please. This also means that even those who do not even download and listen to music are paying for it. Does that make any sense? What business runs that way, forcing payment on people who may not even be interested in their goods?

Across the Irish Sea just 50 miles away, record companies in Ireland have reached a huge agreement with the country’s largest Internet provider to combat piracy. Consumers found guilty of piracy are now being punished in a new way; Total disconnection from the Internet. The music industry sure loves extremism doesn’t it!

These two islands are being watched very closely by the world’s eye. This experiment is likely to further confirm the results of combating piracy by force. We all know the music industry is desperate to find a solution, but our prediction is that both of these ideas will fail miserably as have all the efforts of major record corporations in fighting the inevitable. Interesting how many corporations are so resistant to change, they would rather face failure and destruction than do so.