itunes, who gets the money???

Discussion in 'Music' started by Rachael B, Oct 27, 2003.

  1. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Who get the 99 cents from a song sold online? An article in the Wall Street Journal Sunday breaks it down (approximately):

    47 cents goes to the record label
    34 cents to Apple
    10 cents to the artist
    8 cents to the publisher/songwriter

    In any sensible, fair business arrangement, IMO, the artists and label's share should be reversed![​IMG]
     
  2. Marc Colella

    Marc Colella Cinematographer

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  3. Ricardo C

    Ricardo C Producer

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    I've been very tempted to sign up to a couple of the current digital music stores, but I won't do it until an uprising of sorts takes place and a group of artists band together to set up their own service.

    The kind of thing that happened in the comic book industry when Marvel's top artists jumped ship en masse to create Image Comics in 1992 needs to happen in the record industry. Of course, there's a lot more money at stake there, so it's unlikely it will.
     
  4. Patrick_L

    Patrick_L Second Unit

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    pathetic.
     
  5. Jason Pancake

    Jason Pancake Stunt Coordinator

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    Let's see, the studios put up MILLIONS in advertising, studio time, production costs, sound engineers, producers, cover art, etc... per band!

    How can anyone be surprised that the studios make the majority of the money when they are the ones investing MILLIONS of dollars of their money up front to see that the band succeeds? How dare they.

    Sheesh. [​IMG]
     
  6. Ricardo C

    Ricardo C Producer

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    Do they put MILLIONS into every artist? Do they offer the same support to every act that the few chart toppers get? No, but they sure take the same big fat slice of the profits anyway...
     
  7. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Jason, think about what you're saying. The labels do charge artists large fees for studio time and promotion and other assorted services. Most people, outside of record company executives, think bands are charged excessively for these various services. Bands pay for their own studio time, unless they're very established and can demand a contract that sez otherwise, presumably?

    Jason, say for example, I buy IF I FELL by The Beatles. What of the costs you cited could possibly be fairly attached to this nearly 40 year old song? It was a hit and paid for itself many times over, no doubt. Why (or) do you think the label should recieve the lion's share?
     
  8. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    [​IMG] Si Richardo! We're on the same page.
     
  9. Jason Pancake

    Jason Pancake Stunt Coordinator

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  10. Steve Kuester

    Steve Kuester Second Unit

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    The label should receive whatever share that the band and label agreed to when they signed a contract with each other. If a band (or label) doesn't like it, they shouldn't have signed. I don't think it's for us to say what is good or bad about a buisness arrangement we weren't part of.

    my two cents.
     
  11. Steve Kuester

    Steve Kuester Second Unit

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    Jason, very well said.
     
  12. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Jason, you're very generous with the labels, which I, admittedly, am not.

    Steve, it may not be so simple? Maybe it could be with new music where this distribution was anticipated? Maybe not with older stuff?

    Incidentally, Universal and Sony claims they WILL drop some of the deductions from artists in it's web model. The "packaing charge" and the very daft "broken merchandise charge" are mentioned in the article. A "technology fee", extracted from artist's monies, has been in use for over 10 years to cover the costs of switching, from vinyl....that's almost laughable, except it's true. I've read about this charge before a few times.

    Now these things aren't true of every label out there. I'd quess the big 5 are pretty guilty. Afterall, Sony and Universal are claiming they'll reduce these artist's charges. I'll believe it when I see proof![​IMG] Am I that cynical? Yeah!
     
  13. Michael St. Clair

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    Lets take all the artists and put them on one island.

    Then, lets put all the label execs on another island.

    Then, let's see who actually creates music that people want to listen to.

    Who deserves more than half of the money?
     
  14. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    And, like most bands the only people who ever get to hear that music are on that island with them. You could put out a brilliant album hat no one ever hears (hell, I can name a dozen bands in the last decade that have). In the modern era, if you don't have a label budget behind you- Johnny Q. Public will never know who you are, and you will never sell more than 20,000 albums.

    It's not an issue of who makes music you wanna hear- it's an issue of who finances the ability to produce the music in a way you will consume it-- who makes you know it's available, who puts it in front of the public eye. Without the island with the label guys, the music will likely never leave that island...


    Again- the labels arent the real problem. They dangle the carrot, it's the artists- and even worse, the record buying public that are the problem. All the people on this forum who complain about "buying albums for one good song" are the problem (if you support an artist who has one good song, you're supporting a singles oriented mentality- all part of the problem, if they cant write an album, don't buy any of their material, let alone one song!). The kids in rock bands seeing CRIBS on Mtv and signing their lives away are the problem. The people who won't buy records recorded for less than $250,000 are the problem (since labels wont let bands spend less, as people won't buy them)... etc, etc, etc. I could go on all day on how to reform the music industry- but it starts with the buyers and the artists, cause the labels are just a necessity in a Free MArket- they are serving a need...

    If the artist doesnt like the deal, don't play with major labels. However, that's the tough road-- where real work exists, and they have their eye on the brass ring. When you're blinded by the shine, expect to get blindsided...

    -V
     
  15. kamyiu

    kamyiu Stunt Coordinator

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  16. gregD

    gregD Second Unit

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    OK, so everybody's dirty...

    Buying public:
    ---- undiscriminating morons chasing fashion and hair.

    Music artists:
    ---- clueless, avaricious talents looking to live the high life.

    Music business:
    ---- oily accountants.
    ---- equally oily blue-haired retired shareholders.
    ---- more middlemen than the government.
    ---- unbreakable proprietary distributor network.
    ---- a&r people that wouldn't know music if it bit 'em in the butt.
    ---- concert promoters similar in nature to distributor network.
    ---- institutionalized, requisite 'marketing' (MTV)... not unlike the insurance industry, in a way.

    Hmmm... which group is most problematic?

    Why bother to make music at all?... let's all be accountants... then the budget will be balanced... then we can afford proper hair care products... then those shareholders can rest easy.

    Ironic how music is in such decline at a time when there is so much good, new interesting music out there -- more than than ever before -- if only you'd switch Britney off the tube and go look for it.

    Hit the clubs and concert halls... listen to commercial-free college radio (plenty online)... seek and support artists who make their way online... don't wait for ClearChannel to spoonfeed you.

    And maybe in our lifetime, we'll get to watch those bloated businessmen -- who pretend to be in music -- drop dead.
     
  17. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    I would probably vote for the music consumer. Problematic is probably not the best word, but I think the only real key for things to change is dramatic change in the attitudes of the people who buy music, and in the people who make it. If both made a concerted effort to live outside the label structure, it would improve and the labels would cease to exist.

    The change has to come in how people consume-- but the problem is 99% of the world are passive consumers when it comes to music. The mentality of pop music (and the infuriating claim that people are sick of buying albums for one song-- when I'm beginning to wonder if humans have the ability to listen to albums anymore, when they seem to be seeking a collection of singles) seems to dictate the major purchasing will be made by those who simply buy from the pool of what's put directly in front of them. If you dont have the money or thr resources to be put directly in front of them, you will fail.

    And who has the money and resources to guide you infront of their hungry eyes? The major recording labels.

    But this is really the only advantage they offer-- but with the current music buying public it is a crucialadvantage-- an advantage that bands seem more than willing to pay 90% of their sales in order to achieve.


    And back on the original topic of the fairness of the contracts, I thought of this analogy:

    Let's pretend you came up with an fragrance you think is wonderful, and you'd like to sell it to a perfume company. All you have is the idea, the formula for your fragrance, and a rough demo version of it to present to the various companies.

    A few companies think your smell is pretty good, maybe could use some extra work to refine it- but overall it's a good idea. YOu won't sell it outright- rather would like to partner with them to produce and release the fragrance. The R&D to refine and chemically substitute some ingredients is $200,000. To test it to make sure it will be safe for humans is another $100,000. Designing the bottle, the nae, the various related stuff is about $50,000. Once it's produced and ready for sale it will cost between 1-2 million to market it correctly in any hopes of making money.

    Now, keeping in mind that about 90% of the fragrances put on the market don't really ever sell very well- what do you think the share should be? You have NO money to invest in this partnership- all you have is an idea. They will put up about 2.25 million dollars in support of your idea, with a 90% chance it won't work out. So what do you think their share should be?

    You see where this gets complex? They have fronted 100% of the advance money, with almost certain guarantee they will never get it back. All you ahve vested is an idea. When you look at it that way, I don't know how you could argue that they don't deserve a lion share of the gross.


    The whole state of the industry is horrible, IMHO, but the labels don't possess any unique or overriding evil. We Americans love our free market economy- but the nature of a free market economy means you will have things like Record Lables and Ticket Scalpers, it's not about "fair"- it's about a market existing, and a vendor rising to meet (or in some cases to help create) a demand...

    Now, if you could get 50% of the record buying plublic to color outside the lines a little bit, then artists could exist outside the framework of the labels and do just fine (Truth be told, many do, although it takes a serious amount of brains and hardwork, probably not in the vocabulary of these "artists" for which you are champion on behalf of their "rough luck.)"

    -Vince
     
  18. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Greg, you're really dissident. You remind me of myself. Have you ever boycotted grapes?[​IMG]
     
  19. Jason Pancake

    Jason Pancake Stunt Coordinator

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  20. Rachael B

    Rachael B Producer

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    Vince, I'd hoped you'd show up for this thread. You make some good points but I stille think the labels take too many slices of the pie.[​IMG]
     

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