Metallica / Ice Cream / Taxes

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Brian Dobbs, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. Brian Dobbs

    Brian Dobbs Ambassador

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    Perhaps my perspective will change as I get older, but right now, this is how it is. No revisions, no filtering. I speak for myself only.

    This is my reality.

    It's been 9 years since Metallica took on Napster. Seems like just yesterday. 9 years ago I was in college, making fun of Metallica just like everyone else. "Those greedy bastards!", we all would say.


    Being one of the first 15,000 people to use the original Napster was the coolest thing of 1999, and through the next few years it just exploded. Who were Metallica to take that away from us? Napster revolutionized music distribution!

    9 years later.

    I'm in a band of my own, trying hard just like everyone else to succeed in the wreck of a record industry that we have left. How dismal it all is. There is now an entire generation of kids out there who think they're entitled to free music, and I regretfully contributed to that. Sure, Metallica tarnished themselves in the midst of the whole debacle, but they weren't just looking out for themselves. They were looking out for all musical artists. They were right. Metallica, 9 years later, I now admit - you were absolutely right. Artists rights must be protected.

    I'm sorry, but if I own intellectual property, and you would like to own a part of if for yourself, you must pay for it. Music is not free by default. It should never be free. Consumers are not entitled to free music. If an artist wants to release a free song for download, that is their discretion. This is analogous to the free-scoop-of-ice-cream day at Baskin Robbins. Ice cream is not free. If you want it, you must go to the grocery store and buy it. To attract new customers, Baskin Robbins will periodically give away some of their product for free. You see where I'm going.

    Since 1999, the record industry has been in absolute chaos. P2P applications encourage illegal file sharing. CD sales have plummeted. But Napster did do one thing right, which was to bring music distribution into the 21st century, and inspire new technologies and business platforms. Let's be honest here, if it weren't for Napster, there would be no iPod, or more importantly, iTunes.

    I love our fans, but it's bitter sweet to know that some of them could have potentially downloaded our songs for free. I'm happy that our music is valued, but let's be honest here…owning music that you did not pay for is stealing unless it has been made publicly available. And guess what? You're not hurting "The Man." You're hurting me. You're hurting independent recording artists. My band is not backed by any record label or sponsor. Right now, we rely exclusively on direct support from consumers. But what it consumers don't want to support us by handing over $1 for one of our songs? Is that too much to ask? How much is a coke? $1 for a song that will last your entire life, or $1 for a coke that will last you 5 minutes. Come on! $1 is more than fair.

    And do you have any idea how much studio costs are? Let's break it down for an album's worth of material. $50 per hour x 8 songs at roughly 50 hours per song = $20,000! Who do you think pays for that? The artist. How can artists possibly make a living or break even when people steal their music?

    Everyone likes music. Everyone wants NEW music. And believe me, it is every artist's desire to be heard. Trust me, we want consumers to hear our new music. But some people seem to have a problem paying for music. Guess what? No one likes paying for anything. No one likes paying taxes but we have to. Why? Because that funds everything from highway maintenance, music education in our public schools to law enforcement. How could the government pay for anything if no one paid taxes? No taxes = No government (or at least a government that is not indebted for life to other countries). It's a basic principal. You live in this country, you pay taxes. So how are artists supposed to fund a new recording project without financial support? Consumers want new music? Then consumers need to financially support the artists because no one else will.

    I am sick and tired of illegal file sharing. I'm sick and tired of the record industry defining the terms of success. I am sick and tired of music bloggers who think they have the answers to everything. Music should not be free. The public perception needs to change. The public will not do this themselves. The record industry has no influence over consumers anymore, so they can't be responsible for changing public perception either. Artists, it is simply up to us. We need to support each other in this cause. We are the only ones who will voice our concerns.

    To the record industry, stop releasing bad music. Stop the "Me Too" nonsense. You're the only ones responsible for your failed reputation. Invest in real musicians and songwriters. Earn consumer's trust again. Start appealing to niche markets, not to everyone. If a particular niche audience just so happens to have enough crossover potential, then fine, start mass marketing. But right now, if you want to sign my band you better have a damn good contract to present because there's no way I'm going to be indebted to you. You've raped artists long enough.

    To consumers. I think I've made my point clear. If you don't financially support the artists you listen to, they won't be around much longer. There are no government subsidies for independent musicians and songwriters. If you download music illegally, you are hurting real people. I'm not rich. I have bills just like you. I want to provide music for you. If you like it, do the right thing. Stay away from P2P.

    To my fellow musicians and songwriters. I encourage you to post your thoughts. I would LOVE to hear from you. What suggestions do you have? I want to listen to what you have to say because right now it's your voice that I value the most. Do you agree with me? More importantly, do you disagree with me? If so, why?


    If you're an independent recording musician please join The Solo Album community at http://www.thesoloalbum.com/forum and share your thoughts. I'm counting on you.

    For HTF members, feel free to share your responses in this thread. I welcome all viewpoints.


    Brian Dobbs
    Musician and Webmaster
     
  2. Lucia Duran

    Lucia Duran Screenwriter

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    I am a HUGE fan of music. I have been ever since I remember hearing my first album (The Castle Family). I grew up in a house where my father played everything from the Beatles to Patsy Cline to Michael Jackson. Music is a HUGE part of my life.

    I use to spend my allowance on records, cassette tapes and then eventually cd's. When Napster came out, I was thrilled at finding songs I hadn't heard in forever. It's how I aquired old/rare music that was no longer being distributed.

    Napster was my link to old punk rock bands whose albums were hard to find or for old school songs that the cd's were no longer available. Sure the music industry has been rereleasing old school stuff, but there are still catalogs of music that have yet to be unburied. Rare stuff, which Napster was able to share at the time.

    I'm still a HUGE fan of music and I love discovering new stuff, but my music collection has become so thin, because I cannot afford to spend money on purchasing new music. So I get by on music my friends share with me (they make copies of cd's for me) or I check out the free downloads on itunes or other sites.

    I know people frown upon cd sharing, but hey it's how we use to do it back in the day by making mixed tapes for our friends. I still do it today only in cd form.

    I understand that artists need to get paid for their music. I understand that music isn't free unless the artist makes it so. I personally have not gone to a p2p site in over 10 years.
     
  3. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    You said it yourself: you're trying to sell your music to your 9-years in the past self. And nine years ago, you didn't have money nor inclination to buy music. Nine years from now, your fans will have jobs and money to buy your albums, if you can hold out 'til then. 40 years from now, your fans will be retired, affluent gray-haired men (and women) who will spend a thousand bucks to relive their ill-spent youth in your reunion tours [​IMG]

    I'm curious about how today varies or is similar from my youth in the 80's. We shared and copied albums. But we copied vinyl to cassette, and then later cassette to cassette. The big difference was we were limited to our immediate friends: there was no giant global jukebox. But as youth with very limited funds, a copied album didn't represent a lost sale, since we wouldn't have bought it, regardless. But, speaking for myself, I would not have developed an interest in pop music without my friends sharing and copying music for me. The music industry has made 10-fold from me what they (think they) lost from my copied tapes 20 years ago. As a fan, thanks to copied music, I began to buy music in college and onward when I had some money.

    Are today's youth the same? Does your generation, now a decade removed from Napster & college, now with jobs and cash, buy music? Or do you still "pirate" music? Has there been a fundamental fracture in perceptions, so that now adults feel that copied music is fine, even if it's easily afforded in their budget?

    How does iTunes $0.99 singles fit into this? Are the cheapskates simply waiting for an easy way to buy music? The music industry has been its own worst enemy, working as hard as possible to prosecute its biggest fans and destroy all good, profitable alternatives to piracy.
     
  4. drobbins

    drobbins Screenwriter

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  5. Jassen M. West

    Jassen M. West Supporting Actor

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    I thought CD sales increased when Napster first started due to people being able to find new bands and sample music. So was Napster really a bad thing?

    I have to agree with Dave, I have not bought a new CD in about 10 years because of the "focus on the non paying customer" mentality. I usually listen to music on sites like Pandora or Mixwit because you can build your own "radio staions".
     
  6. Al.Anderson

    Al.Anderson Cinematographer

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    I too was a HS/college cassette copier of friends music. We'd buy different albums and copy the other guys if we liked it. It was a great way to get exposure to new sounds.

    But to my thinking, the big difference between then and now is that in those days the cassettes would eventually wear out, and then, if we liked the music, we'd go purchase the album since we finally had jobs and money. Now the music is digital and it doesn't degrade, so there's no delayed purchase.

    And then there's DRM. When I purchase music I want to be able to play it everywhere. To have to jump through hoops to do that is infuriating, so I buy less. (But I don't steal it either. I only have 1 track from the Napster days; I've purchased everything else. And that one is because it's not available for purchase.) But not stealing it doesn't help the musician if I don't buy it because of DRM.
     
  7. Edwin-S

    Edwin-S Producer

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    Sorry, but I can't feel sympathy. 9 years ago you were helping yourself to free music and had no moral qualms about doing so. Now, because you chose to pursue a career as a musician, you are railing about other people doing what you did. It doesn't wash with me. Frankly, if you hadn't chosen a musical career you would probably still be downloading music for free.

    The other problem is that most musical artists think they are creating art while to consumers today it is just a commodity, nothing but background noise to their busy lives. Most people, nowadays, rarely sit down to actually listen to music and appreciate it. It is just used as "Q" music while they exercise, do daily chores, or commute to school and work. In that kind of environment why would people pay for background noise when it is available for free. People are downloading it for free because most of it isn't worth paying for.

    Your Coke analogy doesn't work because the only reason people don't drink free Coke is due to the difficulty of acquiring it for free. People woud drink plenty of free Coke if there was a method of extracting it by remote control from the store shelf thereby precluding the possibility of being publicly caught for shoplifting. Access to music is easily available and therefore its value as a saleable commodity is reduced.

    As for a $1.00 a song being cheap. Well, I disagree. A $1.00 a song isn't cheap when people have to spend hundreds of dollars on equipment, media, and internet connections in order to gain access. For example, say a corporation like Warner makes music available at a dollar a download. Is that cheap? I don't think so. If I download 12 songs (an average length album) it costs me 12 bucks + a buck or two for the blank + my time + cost of a connection + cost of recording equipment. The cost to burn (not press) an inferior copy of inferior quality music actually exceeds the cost of buying a properly pressed disc. The only real winner with paid musical downloads is the corporation. They still make 12 bucks an album which isn't much less than a standard CD, but save on all of the manufacturing costs because those costs have been willingly assumed by an end user who actually thinks he is saving money; although, all he is really getting is expensive inferior quality music on a medium without the durability or longevity of a pressed disc. Frankly, it amazes me that people are willing to pay a dollar for a download. I know I wouldn't. I'd download for free before I would ever pay a company a 1.00 for inferior sounding music.

    Now, this may sound like I download music or support downloading. In either case I do not. In the first case I cannot be bothered with the hassle of searching for, downloading, and burning music. In the second why am I going to help reduce a corporation's manufacturing costs and in return get an inferior quality reproduction for not much less than a quality CD. If I want a disc I'll go to the store, buy it for 13.99, and get a good quality reproduction. The problem is that most music now isn't worth taking the time to download and it certainly isn't worth paying good money for.
     
  8. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    The other question, I suppose, is how many of the people not paying would otherwise be paying customers. I don't (quite) mean it in the flip "it's not worth paying for" way that many would come up with in the early days of file sharing; I just wonder how many of the lost dollars are actually "lost", as opposed to "not gained".

    As much as I think artists should get paid everyone downloads a song, I strongly suspect that in practical terms, it's not realistic, will not ever be realistic again, and any attempt to enforce it will hurt more than it will help. For practical purposes, musicians are going to have to start looking at songs as loss-leaders that will hopefully lead fans to performances and physical goods (T-shirts, vinyl, deluxe autographed editions, etc.).

    Fair? Probably not, but I suspect that it's the way things are going to be from now on, and I suspect that we're long past the point where it makes more sense to figure out how to work the new reality to one's benefit than to spend time trying to force one's customers to conform to a system that benefits you more than it does them.
     
  9. ChristopherDAC

    ChristopherDAC Producer

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    If you spend 50 hours per song in the studio, it's no wonder you can't make a living in music. You clearly don't have the financial or artistic discipline, & should find a day job — preferably not where you have to handle money. I'm not saying this to put you down. Indiscipline is a major problem among musicians. American Beauty, the only Grateful Dead album that really works as an album, was recorded because the Dead realized they had used up an enormous amount of studio time playing around, & had to record something that would pay for it without using too much more. It's clearly possible to record good music without taking a lot of time — many of the hits of the '50s & '60s were done in one take without any kind of "post-processing". The fact is, most acts have never made much from record sales. If nothing else, the labels always took a big cut. If you want to live on your music, you have to pay attention & see how it's done. Unless you become a mega-star, you're going to make most of your money from live shows, & the merchandise (including recordings) that you sell at those shows. In terms of the income you are likely to receive, recorded music is pretty much like radio airplay in that it's more of a way to get people interested in your music & get them to come to shows than it is a revenue generator. On balance, in other words, free distribution of your music will likely help you more than it hurts you.
     
  10. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    I personally think the recording business is complete crap, so on one level, I couldn't care less that they are being stolen from. The struggling, independant artists are really the only ones I have any sympathy for.

    Take the record companies, they sign a new artist or group. Hoping that their material will help them sell a lot of records and possibly make a lot of money. But the record company says that you have to pay for studio time and whatever advance we give you. If you are lucky enough to get a royalty it usually a pittance and may be limited to a certian number of albums sold, after which that threshold has been hit, you get nothing. I have heard stories of bands that have made very high selling albums yet even after royalties are still in the hole with the record company. The only way they can make it big is if they sell enough records so that they can negotiate a better deal down the line. Then they give "incentives" to radio stations to play their music which leads to the same shit being played incessantly leaving no room for anything more independant. So fuck all them.

    The big artists aren't a whole lot better to me in many cases. Take Metallica, for instance, a band that made tons of money pissing and moaning that there was this thing now where people could get music for free, even though as others had pointed out people had been copying music for decades prior. And many of these bands like to put out a facade that they are anti materialistic, anti greed, anti corporation, anti capitalist. Yet they complain that people are getting their music for free. Well, if you're such "artists" and above all that greed, who cares how you're music is getting out there, because you're not in it for the money, right?

    I think the record industry had cannibalized itself. Back in the day, many bands and labels were interested in actually making cohesive albums. Due to the restraints of vinyl in those days, bands actually had to actively decide what would make it on the album and what might have to be sacrificed, sort of like a recording Darwinism. But now it seems like just a scattershot of tracks to be put on a CD and sold on iTunes. Who's going to want to buy a whole album anymore when there's a a good song or two and the rest garbage. Granted there were always albums like that, but it seems there was much more effort years ago for an album as a whole to have value. They are selling an inferior product as well, compressed, lossy mp3.

    I think for the recording industry to reclaim back some of that dominance (and they still are making money, let's all calm down) they have to evolve to give something of greater value. It's too bad that SACD, DVD-A or even just a DVD based format of delivering hi-res, multichannel capable audio never gained a foothold in the US. I hadn't bought CDs for years until I got a PS3 and have purchased some SACDs of bands I like (some of which I had to import). I'm hoping that the Blu-Ray market can get something going in this area.

    Bottom line for me is that while downloading music may be ethically questionable, I really don't care that it goes on.
     
  11. Brian Dobbs

    Brian Dobbs Ambassador

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    double post.
     
  12. Brian Dobbs

    Brian Dobbs Ambassador

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    I appreciate the comments thus far. I’d like to respond to some specific inquiries.

    Quote:



    When Napster came out, I was thrilled at finding songs I hadn't heard in forever. It's how I aquired old/rare music that was no longer being distributed.




    Exactly. Me too.


    Quote:



    You said it yourself: you're trying to sell your music to your 9-years in the past self. And nine years ago, you didn't have money nor inclination to buy music.




    Interesting way of putting it, but I was one of the few who downloaded rare and unreleased stuff. I actually used Napster as a sampler, buying the music I genuinely liked. I’m a purist, and can’t stand listening to .mp3s. Like most of you here, I want the hi-res.


    Quote:



    Are today's youth the same? Does your generation, now a decade removed from Napster & college, now with jobs and cash, buy music? Or do you still "pirate" music? Has there been a fundamental fracture in perceptions, so that now adults feel that copied music is fine, even if it's easily afforded in their budget?




    Excellent sociological question.


    Quote:



    Commercial radio sucks and even if they play a good song, they no longer state the artists name afterwards.




    Agreed.


    Quote:



    The music industry will never stop free music.




    You’re absolutely right. That’s why I believe that it will be up to the consumers to take a second look at themselves. They are the only ones to can stop themselves. Is it too much to ask that consumers (“fans”) give themselves an audit on their morality?


    Quote:



    They need to focus their attention on better products, affordable products, and invest in music that will last the ages instead of the quick disposable music.




    I could not agree more.


    Quote:



    What is your group’s name? Where can I hear it?




    Here you go.


    Quote:



    But to my thinking, the big difference between then and now is that in those days the cassettes would eventually wear out, and then, if we liked the music, we'd go purchase the album since we finally had jobs and money. Now the music is digital and it doesn't degrade, so there's no delayed purchase.




    Obviously. Cassettes were really just samplers for a few friends.


    Quote:



    And then there's DRM. When I purchase music I want to be able to play it everywhere.




    I could not agree more![​IMG]


    Quote:



    Now, because you chose to pursue a career as a musician, you are railing about other people doing what you did. It doesn't wash with me. Frankly, if you hadn't chosen a musical career you would probably still be downloading music for free.




    Here’s the funny part. There is no career. It’s impossible to have a career if there is no industry. It’s impossible to have a career if people expect you work for free. I support myself with a day job. Like professional sports hopefuls, I got a degree to “have something to fall back on.” But the only difference is that it doesn’t matter how good your music is. Michael Jordan is rich because he was the best basketball player. In this day and age, I have no choice but to support myself with a traditional 9-5. I like buying albums and having the physical copy of the release. So quick to judge, aren’t we?


    Quote:



    Frankly, it amazes me that people are willing to pay a dollar for a download. I know I wouldn't. I'd download for free before I would ever pay a company a 1.00 for inferior sounding music.




    That’s why it would behoove independent artists to study the various consumer markets out there. Some people gravitate towards convenience over quality. Some people, like you and me, prefer quality. I believe in catering to all consumer markets.


    Quote:



    The problem is that most music now isn't worth taking the time to download and it certainly isn't worth paying good money for.




    Most mainstream music, I agree. But that’s why you have to dig a little deeper than what you’re force fed on the radio and TV.


    Quote:



    For practical purposes, musicians are going to have to start looking at songs as loss-leaders…




    I will not accept that. That to me is analagous to getting raped. As in, “Well, I’m completely helpless so I might as well just let it happen. What other choice do I have?”



    Quote:



    Take the record companies, they sign a new artist or group. Hoping that their material will help them sell a lot of records and possibly make a lot of money. But the record company says that you have to pay for studio time and whatever advance we give you. If you are lucky enough to get a royalty it usually a pittance and may be limited to a certian number of albums sold, after which that threshold has been hit, you get nothing. I have heard stories of bands that have made very high selling albums yet even after royalties are still in the hole with the record company. The only way they can make it big is if they sell enough records so that they can negotiate a better deal down the line.




    This is actually true!


    Quote:



    If you spend 50 hours per song in the studio, it's no wonder you can't make a living in music. You clearly don't have the financial or artistic discipline, & should find a day job — preferably not where you have to handle money.




    I'm sorry, but I don't can't possibly converse with you if you are both judging and insulting me.


    Quote:



    Well, if you're such "artists" and above all that greed, who cares how you're music is getting out there, because you're not in it for the money, right?




    Speaking as an independent musician, and as an adult who wishes to sustain himself doing something he's passionate about, money is certainly important. Isn't money important to you? How are we supposed to even sustain a traditional way of life, while at the same time trying to fulfill a culturual and sociological need that artists provide to the world?


    Quote:



    I think for the recording industry to reclaim back some of that dominance (and they still are making money, let's all calm down) they have to evolve to give something of greater value. It's too bad that SACD, DVD-A or even just a DVD based format of delivering hi-res, multichannel capable audio never gained a foothold in the US. I hadn't bought CDs for years until I got a PS3 and have purchased some SACDs of bands I like (some of which I had to import). I'm hoping that the Blu-Ray market can get something going in this area.




    Please keep in mind that I’m not part of the industry, but that I could not agree more with you.

    Wouldn't it be great if musicians released their music with DVDs and surround sound mixes of their album, all at the cost of a CD?


    Quote:



    Bottom line for me is that while downloading music may be ethically questionable, I really don't care that it goes on.




    Kind of like, "well as long as I'm not being ripped off then it's ok", right?
     
  13. DaveF

    DaveF Moderator
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    Brian, I keep wanting to hear your opinion on the solution about teens wanting free music. You were a music-stealing youth who thought anyone who told you otherwise was wrong. Now you're a sensible adult and believe your younger actions and attitudes were wrong.

    And now you want the youth of the world to stop doing what you were doing so you can now make a living.

    How do you change their attitudes? How do you reach your younger self? How do you reach your adult friends who, as non-musicians, probably didn't change attitudes as you have?

    Do you encourage the RIAA to continue destroying the financial lives of college students found "sharing" music? Do you think that it's a matter of affordable and accessible commercial sites, like iTunes? Do we need PSAs? A very special episode of Blossom?
     
  14. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    First, I'm going to come down on the side that says downloading music is a rather lesser offense than sexual assault.

    But if you're going to take this line, how do you convince others that they should take it? You've got the one group that doesn't think music is valuable, and the other that doesn't see the copying of information as stealing since nobody has lost anything - certain people just have not gained.

    That's the other thing - copyright is a relatively recent invention, in terms of human history, and a much stronger concept in Western nations and the U.S. in particular. In an increasingly global community, our notions of what is acceptable use is inevitably going to be dragged toward others'.

    We're in a transitional time right now, and those are hard. The record industry is dying in large part because the traditional middlemen can be circumvented, and artists who still think in terms of that system are going to have trouble with the new order. Those who are willing to find new ways to succeed will.
     
  15. WillG

    WillG Producer

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    I'm just being honest here. It's really a choose your battles thing for me. I'm not in the industry, I've got my own problems, so I'm not really losing sleep over it. And it's not going to go away anytime soon either, so I'm not joining the fight.
     
  16. troy evans

    troy evans Screenwriter

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    Hey Brian. A bit off subject, but, I like Mona Lisa. That was pretty damn good, it actually stunned me. Kinda Dream Theater-ish which from me is an extreme compliment. On to the subject, I'm the anti-download guy. I don't mind audio samples on the internet at a bands MySpace or official homepage. Anything else is bullshit. As Edwin said, it is far cheaper to buy a cd than download the entire album when you factor in all the costs. You'll find as you get older alot of things you thought were cool and right don't work for your best interest. I'm not gonna come down on you because when you were young you didn't see the impact of the situation. Really, who of us here gave a rats ass about anything when we were younger that didn't affect us? The important thing is you've finally made the realization of what it means to the artist who have lost from this free download nonsense. And are commited to making a difference. You're gonna take a few hits, but, you'll be alright. [​IMG]
     
  17. Jimi C

    Jimi C Screenwriter

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    I dont know what kind of music you play. I dont know the name of your band. I doubt I've ever heared them on the radio, I doubt I would ever go to one of your shows. If you asked me to buy your music right now I would laugh in your face. If you asked me If I wanted to download it for free right now I probably would. If I liked it I would probably pay to see you live, I would probably tell me friends about it, I would probably buy a t-shirt with a nice logo on it, I would probably buy a concert DVD.

    That's no bullshit. Music sharing sites arnt bad if you're an unknown band who isnt signed to a major record label. If your Metallica you probably could do without.

    Honestly, how much money do you think music sharing has cost you? If you honestly beleive that everyone who downloaded your music for free would have bothered with it otherwise you are out of your mind.
     
  18. drobbins

    drobbins Screenwriter

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    Real Name:
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    The Newsboys, DC Talk, Jars of Clay, Petra, and many other Christian rock groups are examples of music that I downloaded on a P2P, listened to over a few months and then bought their CDs and went to shows. It is a collection that I have bought that I wouldn't have otherwise. They are not played on any stations around here. Besides being on the Disney channel, how else would Hilary Duff sold any music? She was never played on the radio. My daughter has her whole collection and we have been to 2 concerts. (I even still listen to a couple songs on my way to work) We would have never bought a single one if I didn't download it first to check it out. You may have noticed that the groups I used as examples are not the most current. Hmmmm.... They were around when I was downloading. I haven't bought any CDs for years now & I don't know who the latest hot group is.

    As for your music, I would think that new "obscure" bands would embrace P2P and
    as I asked in post #4 If I were your target audience, how are you going to reach me?

    By the way, now that the P2P networks have been shut down for a while & the music industry has ticked off a large percent of their customers, how has it worked out for them? Has it helped their bottom line $$$?
     
  19. Bob Graz

    Bob Graz Supporting Actor

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    There was a time when music was king. When artists and bands created art. When people argued over the purity of music. Receivers vs amplifiers and pre-amps (also tubes vs solid state), belt driven turntables vs direct drives. The quality and warm sound of vinyl vs tape. Comparisons between artists and groups and competition between them to produce ever better product. Music and how people listened to music was discussed much like video is today. Music was savored, it was critically listened to. Back then TV was the "boob" tube. Watching TV was a brainless activity.

    Those days are long gone. I agree with the person who said much of music today is used simply as background. You don't see the critical listening of music and the quality of the product and technology of yesterday. Music today is mass produced crap by in large. It gets the respect that it deserves (or has earned). It has replaced TV as a brainless activity. Replacing it is video. Video is king now. HDTV, DVD players, recorders, Blu-Ray, video games...Those are the things that interest people now. That's where technology and money goes. Music is second or third rate today. I'm not making a value statement or judgment statement, just stating the facts.

    You can't rely on the same price and distribution models from long ago. That product and it's place on everyone's list of priorities doesn't exist anymore.

    New models will be developed commensurate with people's wants and needs. That's just the way it is.
     
  20. Brian Dobbs

    Brian Dobbs Ambassador

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    I don’t want this thread turning into an advertisement for my own music. I only started it because I wanted to start a discussion among the great audio enthusiasts here on the Home Theater Forum. Since there are those who are questioning who I am and where I’m coming from I think it’s necessary to give a little more background info…

    Allow me to take a step back and introduce myself. My name is Brian Dobbs. In 2006 I released a 3 disc solo album – CD / DVD-A / DVD-V. The disc included 9 songs, and yes, I mixed them in surround sound myself, and yes, I also played all of the instruments myself. The video portion includes “making of” footage, studio “music videos” and a lengthy artist interview, produced in 16x9 widescreen. I documented everything and the video footage literally shows you the exact parts I recorded from what you hear. If you’re curious on reading more about that, please feel free to click here.

    [​IMG]


    Since then, I’ve concentrated my creative efforts with Concrete Prophet. We’ve released a 3 song EP in 2007, and have plans on releasing new material in 2009. Each month I send out a monthly newsletter. Here’s information we just sent out concerning our recording intentions for 2009.

    From http://www.concreteprophet.com/

    So let’s just say you’re a fan of the music and hate the “music industry”. Seeing how my group is completely isolated and not part of any business entity, let’s just say that we were to offer the following to anyone who wished to buy our music.

    CD

    $6
    Stereo CD (5 songs)
    16 bit, 44.1 kHz
    Seal wrapped in jewel case
    Liner notes & artwork

    $5
    Stereo CD-R (5 songs)
    16 bit, 44.1 kHz
    Paper sleeve or jewel case (whatever I have available for free)

    $1
    Stereo CD-R (1 song)
    16 bit, 44.1 kHz
    Paper sleeve or jewel case (whatever I have available for free)


    5.1

    $4
    5.1 Advanced Resolution DVD-Audio DVD-R (5 songs)
    24 bit, 96 kHz
    Paper sleeve or jewel case (whatever I have available for free)

    $3
    5.1 Dolby Digital DVD-R (5 songs)
    high bitrate 448 kbps
    Paper sleeve or jewel case (whatever I have available for free)

    $1
    5.1 Advanced Resolution DVD-Audio DVD-R (1 song)
    24 bit, 96 kHz
    Paper sleeve or jewel case (whatever I have available for free)

    $1
    5.1 Dolby Digital DVD-R (1 song)
    high bitrate 448 kbps
    Paper sleeve or jewel case (whatever I have available for free)


    STEMS

    $8
    Stereo stems (5 songs)
    Drum mix
    Rhythm Guitar mix
    Lead Guitar mix
    Bass mix
    Vocals mix

    $2
    Stereo stems (1 song)
    Drum mix
    Rhythm Guitar mix
    Lead Guitar mix
    Bass mix
    Vocals mix

    And obviously iTunes distribution.

    Does this seem fair? Tell me, what more could we offer? I have seen no standardized business model that offers as much content and purchasing options as this, especially pioneered by…..an independent group. Have you?

    After having said that, I’m curious to know why people feel the need to say ‘right to my face’ (ahem) that they are literally going to steal my ‘product’ once I’ve made it available. I don’t understand just how people find that morally acceptable. Besides the fact that it’s disrespectful, it’s illegal.

    How do we change the ‘youngsters’? Through education. By talking about it. Not by forcing, because obviously that won’t work. That’s exactly why I started this discussion. My goal is for people to stop avoiding the subject and come clean. My intention is to salvage the struggling music industry. That doesn’t mean I want to save any major record label, because they’re greedy bastards. I’m looking out for the artists and their livelihoods.

    To Troy Evans….I’m glad you like our music. And thank you. And yes, Dream Theater rules.
     

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