Canadian Gold Certifcation for AMND

Congratulations to Loreena for this early-on achievement! I'll admit I had to look up the numbers to see just what constitutes a 'gold' certification in Canada, and was surprised to learn that amongst other details, it means sales of 40,000 CDs, cassettes, and vinyl recordings, plus full-album digital downloads; it also refers to sales for any downloads of single digital tracks from those CDs which reach the 20,000 mark. I always did wonder how those particular downloads were counted. But I noticed something else as well, and now I've got a question, for any person(s) here to answer who can do so:

Would anyone happen to know why the numbers changed after May 1 of 2008? I read that, for example, 'gold' used to mean sales of 50,000 CDs etc, not 40,000. I'm wondering if the recording industry is perhaps looking at sales numbers in general and deciding that sales appear to be down at least 20% over what they used to be, due to all the free but illegal p2p trading and outright piracy, etc. Could this be the reason that 'gold' was dropped 20% to its current 40,000 level, just as 'platinum' was dropped from 100,000 to 80,000? Or is some other intent I'm unaware of at work?

From the message that Quinlan Road put on News and Views regarding this Canadian sales achievement, I gather that the numbers got crunched after less than one month after the CD's release; I'd love to know how sales in other countries have fared, especially, those in the US! I need to check on the US numbers these days, and see what constitutes 'gold' and 'platinum' here, now. I'm thinking they've perhaps also dropped their numbers a similar 20% but I won't know until I try looking into it.

For me, AMND is an outstanding seasonal CD, one that I believe I'll be playing year 'round. There are so many new 'competing' seasonal CDs which also came out this year that I'm nearly certain Loreena's offering is doing fine, considering all the new (and older) choices made available. I also believe it'll continue selling well (figuratively speaking) for years to come. Loreena is one of those timeless artists who keeps 'growing' new fans all the time, mostly by word of mouth and others' recommendations via the internet (think YouTube, here). She has virtually no visibility, no 'sales push' in the city where I live, yet her works all sell very well locally when they can be found in 'real' stores! Most of us 'locals' have learned to merely place internet orders for her music and DVDs. Barnes and Noble and Amazon online sources are big favourites here amongst the US ordering houses. So is CD Baby, despite shipping/handling charges which grow larger the further one lives 'east' and 'south' of the far northwestern states. And one cannot forget about ordering directly through Quinlan Road, thus Maple Music itself; the closer one lives in the US to Ontario the better, for ordering directly from there.

I sincerely hope that Loreena is not going to feel discouraged from composing and recording more music in the future. It seems to me I previously read that 'The Book of Secrets' reached something over 4 million in sales worldwide, but I did come across that information a long time ago and I'm not certain what I read was accurate. And, that was a different day, in the recording industry. Times (and CD sales) have indeed changed. I'd like to remain optimistic, and hope we get to hear and purchase more new material from Loreena in the years to come.

Jeanne
Original Post
Hi Jeanne,

Let's also remember that Warner was behind both ABOS and TMTM albums, meaning that the marketing budget to produce promotional collaterals, TV ads, billboards, in-store displays, and of course big PR agencies was hugely higher than Quinlan Road would be able to do by themselves. Not to mention the fact that that a label such Warner would be able to produce far more copies of one release and thus replenish stores around the globe much more easily and quickly than QR could do by themselves.

This is not to say of course that QR does not have the means to promote their new releases properly (Loreena has always been excellent at producing and distributing her music - let's not forget the "how to sell your own recordings" experience) BUT when the fat cats of the music industry come into play everything is much, much easier.

But Loreena does not care about sales, as long as they are able to financially support her work, her travels and her staff. She seems to be one of the least money-obsessed people artists I have ever got to know. And at least she is her own boss and is not accountable to anyone in terms of what to do or what not to do.

I remember reading about how much she opposed to the Mummers Dance remix version at the beginning, with all those synthetysed percussions. That release (albeit I do think it has a great sound) was somewhat demanded by Warner to make the sound more "appealing" to a more widespread audiences. Loreena does not accept that kind of impositions...She's a tough one! ...Sorry if I have gone slightly off topic, got carried away ;-)
All_souls_night, I can appreciate what you've offered here, but doesn't Verve and Universal Music Distribution now do what Warner's did for Loreena before, in some capacity at least? They are mentioned on my copy of AMND, so guess I supposed Loreena had signed on for some similar kind of worldwide distribution deal such as she once had with Warners. To my recollection, that former 'deal' also included The Visit, not just tmam and tbos, and later, I think Warner's had to get involved in helping to distribute LiPaT as well, when the number of requests for it became too large for Quinlan Road to handle entirely on its own. At least, I do remember reading about that in an old magazine interview years ago.

Not that it matters too much, I guess...I only had to wonder why Loreena had chosen to place her 'should music be free' topic on the forums here unless she may have felt curious or possibly not so happy about fewer people actually purchasing her own works legitimately rather than merely cheating and listening to and/or trading them 'for free' off YouTube, p2p sites, etc. I never did believe fewer people were hearing or enjoying her music, only that fewer appeared to be purchasing it in order to listen to it. Was I wrong, in my supposition there? Rhetorical question, obviously.

I cannot imagine that Loreena is all that disinterested in the number of her CD/download sales and only cares to make enough from those sales to pay for her travels, the making of her music, and enough to pay her staff--does that sound logical, for someone who is reputed to be such an outstanding all-around businesswoman?

Please--I'm not trying to 'start anything' here; I'm aware that Loreena retains total control over everything she produces and puts out there, full control over her tours, the musicians she hires, etc, and that holding such control often might necessitate sacrificing some sales. It's good that she retains her control; otherwise, I fear we'd be getting some version of her music which tries to cater more to the 'lowest common denomenator' and we all know she certainly does not wish to do that!

Odd--I began this topic trying to find out if others out there had any answers to those 'certification numbers' questions that I asked. I'd still love to hear from anybody who actually knows, or who at least has some idea about why those numbers did change. It's fine with me to go off-course from that a bit, but I'm still wondering about what I originally asked. No problems, though; know that I'm only a 'curious Celtickat', after all. Wink

Jeanne

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