Music and Recording Industry: Fans Don’t Care

Fans just want to listen to music!

Reassured by overwhelming success with old business models, the media sound industry missed a golden opportunity offered in the digital age of communications.  Fortunately, and thanks to the internet, opportunity knocks more than once.   2008 saw around 2,000 radio stations sending digital signals with much greater clarity.

The century-old relationship between the music and recording industry reflect the mutual dependency on sound that gave to the dance craze, phonographs and plastic records. Products of both industries were the mass-marketing of sound, free advertising.  Preformers like Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald, sent record sales sky high.  Radio, in the 1950’s shifted to record music making airplay essential for recordings to succeed.

But, companies did not see Napster’s ominous potential coming to wipe out the retailing structure for the music industry. Soon after reeling in $14.6 billion, in 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court bought Napster to a grinding halt.  Beware the sleeping giants! MTV may very well be brand the marketplace has been waiting for. MTV brings an immediate brand equity, instant familiarity able to pull mainstream consumers into the digital age.

“The radio networks, losing advertisers to television, scaled back what they offered to affiliates. As the number of listeners dropped, local stations switched to more recorded music, which was far cheaper than producing concerts, dramas and comedies. Thus, radio reinvented itself, survived and prospered.  The industry found itself shaken again in the 1970s when the listeners flocked to new FM stations. Because FM technology offered superior sound fidelity, these became the stations of choice for music. AM listenership seemed destined to tank until, in another reinvention, most AM stations converted to nonmusic formats.”

Newer options like, RouteNote’s offers ‘free distribution’ model, so artist can distribute their work themselves, to music stores globally, free of charge and with no undisclosed fees and costs.  They get to keep 85% of  their royalties, artist maintain control of distribution with the option to switch distribution model at any time.  With quick access and an easy to use upload system, RouteNote may prove to be a formidable force, as with  self-publishing vs. traditional book publishers, music recording industry have more adaption to do!

Which new technology delivery methods do you see as most enduring for the radio industry, please leave your comments here?


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