Wassup Rockers

On Major Record Labels

In one of my classes we’ve been discussing the media and how they have a huge influence on what we think, and how we accept what we are told by the media.

We also got to talking about the power of the internet as a way to respond and question the media. Somehow we got to discussing how people download music illegally because–according to one student in my class–they believe in sharing, but how it’s hurting the record labels out of millions of dollars.

But see, as soon as my classmate said that, I knew he had fallen for it and believed what the record labels are crying about. Dude, they’re crocodile tears. I’m not denying that record labels have lost a lot of money, but maybe if the business model on which they operate wasn’t so shoddy, maybe they wouldn’t be shitting so much fucking money. This is a business that accepts a 90% failure rate and prays for that 10% of success to pay for all the failure. This is the business that hires people who don’t even know anything about music and pays them to do… I don’t know what. This is a business that releases an album and then re-releases 3 or 6 months later with new artwork and like 1 new extra track and 3 remixes and maybe a video, forcing the CD junkies to buy this shit all over again.

Does it sound like they care about the music?

Does it sound like they know what they are doing?

Does it sound like they respect you as a music fan?

I don’t care for a band like Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, musically speaking, but you gotta admit they’re thinking quite clearly about their best options. They’re not even on an indie, they’re unsigned. And you know something? They make like $7 per $13, which totally adds up if they shift enough units. Without the middle man, they’re likely to profit much faster than someone stuck in the major label system. Look at someone like Toni Braxton: for all those records she sold in the 90s, she was left bankrupt.

Ugh, whatever, I’m just getting really mad thinking about it.

Jeffrey Lewis – “Don’t Let The Record Label Take You Out to Lunch


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