Shifting Music Industry Presents New Challenges

quote:

On a final note, I’d be interested to learn about your thoughts on the current state of the music industry. Do you think music should be free? Do you prefer to get your music online or from a music store?
LM


Hi Loreena and everyone else here,

No, music should not be free, no one wants to work for free, and music is already a bargain, you pay for a CD or download once and listen as often as you want to, whenever you want to.

I still prefer to get my music at a store, and like a lot of other people here I enjoy the art and liner notes that come with a CD. The MP3 player I purchased almost two years ago still doesn't have anything on it.

Mona
quote:
Originally posted by Liberté:
A good album truly is more than the sum of its parts, and if people only listen to one song from each, they are missing out. That is why I continue to buy CDs as opposed to digital downloads.


I have noticed a common misconception with buying digital downloads on this forum, illustrated by Liberte's comment here. Downloading an album off of iTunes, Amazon, Rhapsody, what have you, does not have to be a one song trick. I have downloaded entire albums happily for 10 dollars off of iTunes for an artist I don't particularly feel the burning desire to own a hard copy of their CD, especially for the 2 to 6 dollars more it costs to buy in a free-standing store. I've also handpicked the few songs off of an artist's album I'm not quite sure about on iTunes. It goes either way. I think everyone is in agreement here that most people will and have bought Loreena's hard copy albums because it's important to all of us to have that physical album to view and enjoy, but I feel that this is an exception rather than the rule. I understand as a visual person that liner notes and hard copy CD cases may hold a visual appeal to some people more than others, but there are advantages to having digital files, in that you don't have to dust them off!

As far as putting things up on YouTube or other places in the name of giving Loreena all the publicity she "needs", why can't you just point them to the QR website? It doesn't make any sense to go to some grainy video online when a cleaner, clearer version exists here on the website.

Is Loreena going to weigh in again, or is she waiting for this discussion to reach 20 pages? Smiler

Angie
quote:
Originally posted by Drizzt:
quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
[...]
As already mentioned, it's not hard to dowload videos from YouTube, Google, MySpace, etc.
Despite the quality (for some viewers) being 'poor', the 'pirate' can easily take the downloaded video and improve it to a better quality.
[...]
Shan-Lyn


LOL, Youtube/Google/any video/audio in a lossy format CANNOT be improved to a better quality. The information lost from the original source (DVD/Bluray/HDTV) is lost forever. Once you have a video/audio file in AVI/MP3 etc you cannot obtain the original DVD/CD from it. Pieces of information have been erased, they are lost, and from a lossy source you cannot try to take them back.

Applied to the video problem, you can convert a youtube video from his tiny source (320x240 I think it is) to a DVD resolution (720x576) but the image just get blured, you cannot rebuild the lost pixels like in a CSI chapter. That fiction isn't true. The computer software can try to guess how to blur efficiently when rescaling from youtube to DVD, but it will be a poor quality. Just think on it, you have lost 81% of surface area.
From youtube's tiny screen source you cannot rebuild a DVD with an acceptable quality for most humans.

It is just a simple "technical" quote, I don't want to interrupt your conversation about artists' rights and the new information era, discusion that I am following with attention for all arguments.

Regards, Drizzt


Hello Drizzt,

I am new here and I see this is quite an active thread. Drizzt, I beg to differ from your view but this is not a fiction. You are laughing but it is possible to improve the quality but I will not explain how this can be done in this forum because I don't want to put ideas into the people's heads. Maybe it is good that you think this way because this means that you could not spread illegal information. It just means that you are ignorant (not insulting you) to what the procedures would be. People keep saying that it is always possible to rip a song off a cd because when people really want it they will find a way. The same goes for a pirate. If he really wants it he knows the way. It takes little work to recreate a master copy of the original. FYI, I am not a pirate but it was explained to me how it could be done.

Silver
Hi Shan-Lyn,

quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
...to understand how to better protect their music in an obvious Digital world that has gone out of control.

There are ways.


Could you elaborate on this one, please?

You're not talking about digital "copy protection" such as so-called DRM, are you? DRM has been proven not to work in practice. The only thing DRM achieves is constraining the legitimate user.

Once again, I'm not encouraging illegal downloads - I'm just opposing any DRM schemes.

Cheers, Stefan.
quote:
Originally posted by Silver Cloak:
Hello Drizzt,

I am new here and I see this is quite an active thread. Drizzt, I beg to differ from your view but this is not a fiction. You are laughing but it is possible to improve the quality but I will not explain how this can be done in this forum because I don't want to put ideas into the people's heads. Maybe it is good that you think this way because this means that you could not spread illegal information. It just means that you are ignorant (not insulting you) to what the procedures would be. People keep saying that it is always possible to rip a song off a cd because when people really want it they will find a way. The same goes for a pirate. If he really wants it he knows the way. It takes little work to recreate a master copy of the original. FYI, I am not a pirate but it was explained to me how it could be done.

Silver


I am not a pirate, and I hope than I am not ignorant, al least as ignorant as other people.

I know the works about enhancing resolution of an image, like Vincent Cheung's (and others) papers "Video Epitomes". I hope moderators don't mind if I put here a link to a technical paper from Toronto University (is a public document as all we can see).
TECHNICAL PAPER:
http://www.psi.toronto.edu/pubs/2005/VideoEpitome-CVPR05.pdf
WEB:
http://www.psi.toronto.edu/~vincent/videoepitome.html

As we can see in the image samples, the scaled up image sample has more quality than the standard rescaling method (lanczos, bicubid, etc) but it lacks of truly good quality, at least for me (the "ghosts" in the leaves given as example).

About to know or not to know how to do things I disagree with your opinion, this knowledge is free, this is a published paper from an University. If you think this is somewhat illegal, just call the police. And then, because it is just Maths, try to impose restrictions to the use & knowledge of multiplication tables/sines & cosines and all the stuff that is used in the public and free algorithms to compress images, videos or music: MP3 verbigratia.
The problem is doing something illegal with knowledge, not the knowledge itself. And for the first one there are laws in all our countries.

I don't really know what are you trying to say me with sentences like:
quote:

Maybe it is good that you think this way because this means that you could not spread illegal information.
[..]
It takes little work to recreate a master copy of the original


When I make an afirmation, I try to help it with proofs or some kind of explanation. I tried (with or without success) to explain why I believe that things exposed by Shan-Lyn do not exist today. If you are arguing that I may be wrong, proofs are welcome since they came from free papers (avaliable to all of us) that their possesion does not represent a violation of any law.

As a resume, those works about enhancing image/video resolution are a great and promissing line of investigation, but, at least for my eyes, are far at this point of time from what you are telling us.
Of course, any counterexample given to me, I will apologize for my mistake because knowledge is always good, and learning from my own misconceptions is better.

So I continue thinking unless proofs are given that from a youtube tiny source, it is not possible to obtain a DVD video with acceptable quality.

Drizzt
quote:
Originally posted by angie:
<snip>
As far as putting things up on YouTube or other places in the name of giving Loreena all the publicity she "needs", why can't you just point them to the QR website? It doesn't make any sense to go to some grainy video online when a cleaner, clearer version exists here on the website.

Is Loreena going to weigh in again, or is she waiting for this discussion to reach 20 pages? Smiler

Angie


Angie -

Good points. As for Loreena weighing in, I, myself, am having a hard time catching up, lol.

Aye, Loreena, you see what you went and did? Cool

One has to admit, it's a very stimulating subject. I, for one, am learning a lot out of this for my own copyrights to music, for future's sake. Wink

Kind regards,
Shan
quote:
Originally posted by Stefan:
Hi Shan-Lyn,

quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
...to understand how to better protect their music in an obvious Digital world that has gone out of control.

There are ways.


Could you elaborate on this one, please?

You're not talking about digital "copy protection" such as so-called DRM, are you? DRM has been proven not to work in practice. The only thing DRM achieves is constraining the legitimate user.

Once again, I'm not encouraging illegal downloads - I'm just opposing any DRM schemes.

Cheers, Stefan.


Stefan -

Certainly. DRM (Digital Rights Management - for the folks that don't know), has proven to be ineffective due to the reason that their CSS (Content Scrambling System) which was used to encode DVD movie files became somewhat useless after its algorithm became broken. It goes into a lot of tech jargon details.

DRM was not on my mind when I mentioned that surely there must be ways.

I did think, however, of sound imaging encoding. Musical artists have started the trend of encoding pictures into their music, which I think is a pretty cool idea. The images can then be viewed with a spectrogram, which is a graph representing the intensity or a frequency with relation to time.

So Loreena could download all nice pictures of herself in her music, and we'd go to sleep dreaming about her after listening to her music before bedtime, because our subconscious would be releasing the information. Aye, she'd be spoiling us for sure. Razzer

Kind regards,
Shan
quote:
Originally posted by Liberté:
quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
As already mentioned, it's not hard to dowload videos from YouTube, Google, MySpace, etc.
Despite the quality (for some viewers) being 'poor', the 'pirate' can easily take the downloaded video and improve it to a better quality.


Due to the limitations of the video compression, this is unlikely to be true. As for piracy (and this is a matter of semantics), illegally profiting from someone else's work is criminal and I am personally against it, but it is still not theft. It is criminal copyright infringement.



Liberté -

With all due respect, there is nothing 'semantical' about 'piracy'. A pirate, is a pirate, is a pirate. Cards on the table. No matter how you slice or dice it, no matter what area, what lifestyle, what different associated elements the 'pirate' may want to keep company with, if an individual has tendency to want to capitalize on someone else's work, and deprives them of monies that are, in essence, belonging to them, it is still theft.

I don't understand how you cannot understand this. Let's make believe that you're the one that has toiled to bring a work into a market. You expect a certain market that you've signed contracts with to bring to you the monies that are rightfully yours. If someone else decides to open up a market, taking your work, but doesn't pay you but keeps the profits for themselves, then would you not feel that they're stealing the bread & butter out of your mouth? And also putting you in a position, because the people you've signed a contract with to propagate your work, also receive a certain percentage because these people work to help your creation become known. So, in essence, two entities are being stolen from here...that would be you, and the agencies which you've signed contracts with.

In Loreena's situation, she didn't want to be governed and dictated to by agencies handling her incoming monies, which means, that she - having her own business - becomes affected twice. Not receiving the monies due to her which are rightfully hers to have by:

1) her artistic musical works and achievements;
2) and the costs that she must invest in her business to keep it running.

Talk about a 'double whammy' when piracy is on the loose. I'm not saying that you support 'piracy', but I think you err if you think that depriving one of their rightful monies is not theft. It is theft, no matter how you slice or dice it.

Just my $.02 .

Kind regards,
Shan
Personally, I do not think music should be free.

It takes an enormous investment of time, energy, and money to create and distribute an album, especially music like yours, of which your travel and studies are so intricate a part. I would be very surprised to see any type of media which requires such investment on the part of the artist and support staff available for free unless there is some other revenue stream associated with it, and the last thing I want is to see the distribution of music tied up in some type of marketing and advertising. Virtually nothing of value is free unless you do it yourself, and even then, there is usually a cost associated.

I prefer to get my music on a tangible media, whether it be purchased from an online distributor, direct, or in a store. I rip all of my music to my computer, and store it on a network storage array, from which it can be accessed by any device on my network, and I do not use any file sharing services or expose my network, so I'm comfortable with digital media, but I still prefer to have a physical disc that can be played on any CD player.

As long as it either comes on one, or I can burn it to one for my own use without violating the terms of use, I don't care where it comes from. With the exception of media that is no longer in print and is otherwise unavailable, I won't buy music online otherwise. Besides, you can't hang an autographed download on the wall!
Hi Loreena,
I forgot to mention that I really enjoy your latest Nights from the Alhambra dvd, and cd set.It is excellent!
As for this cd,dvds,music files etc. I think it must be a real problem. You can buy a burner for 45 bucks and blank cds,dvds are also cheap. For example I know there are a number of people that I work with that make all kinds of copies of everything, you name it. They refuse to buy originals, and say why when I can get them basically for free. I work with about 500 people and I can honestly say that most of them burn their own, or there is a number of people that will do it for you for $5.00 copy,or they ask what do you have and will make trades and copies. I don't take part in this and have voiced my opinion to some individuals.
Robert.
Hello everyone,

Well you must have been reading my mind Angie, as yesterday I started to enter some comments into this thread. I wanted to share some comments another musician, Billy Bragg had to say about this subject in another column ( see below)

In the end I was not able to complete my comments and headed 'stage left' to the matter which was calling me.

I must begin by saying this has been one of the most intelligent dialogues on this issue I have seen, professionally or otherwise for a long time. I am so impressed by how current many of you are with the issue and willing to get into the ‘nitty gritty.’

Indeed, I have learned a lot myself and am grateful to all of you for this . No doubt I will continue to learn more.

As you will see, the technological advancements have brought a mixture of good things and less good things.

What I am seeing on the front lines is quite possible an 'end game' of sorts and I don't think there is anyone in or out of the industry who is able to predict where it will all end.

The disintegration of bricks and mortar music retail , in particular the Mom and Pop music stores, has been an incredible loss in my view.

They were often run by people who loved music and loved turning their customers on to music.(In my view, the best way any business should be run!!) However, they were pressed out by a number of things including other retail outlets who adopted very different business models, including that of selling real estate in the stores ( rack space, listening posts etc back to the record companies) and that, along with the technological advances and disenfranchised public, became like a deck of cards pushing out the little folks who genuinely cared and gave their customers good service. Some retailers have used ( and continue to use) CD's as loss leaders ( sell for less than their cost in order to get customers into the stores to buy more expensive things)

The many layers of infrastructure and legislation which are needed in the digital realm to compensate for this disappearance of music retail are simply not there yet and as a result, any artist and their supporters who prefer to 'consume' their music through CD's have quickly become further disenfranchised.

There are a lot of variables and layers involved in the new technological and economic world and their dynamics and interplay need to be computed together. Not an easy thing.

I believe there are a number of industries in a similar position.

What is clear is that creative people need a critical mass of success in order to do what they do unless they revert back to a patronage system .

We still have patronage arrangements in a variety of forms, for a variety of artistic endeavors. As for myself , it is something I have sought to avoid as much as possible for a variety of reasons This would include product endorsements etc.

The patronage system may be the only way certain things can survive and we see this often in relation to art forms such as classical music, dance etc.

This can be OK if there is no creative push for more 'commercial 'creations or programming. However, when outside companies use the arts for 'marketing and advertising' through name association of course this can set up a situation of potential conflict .Who does the creative director serve? The art and creative expression or steer creative direction to more populist or 'commercial' directions in order to serve the marketing objective of the patron?

Piggy backing on this can lead to the promotion of things which society does not support anymore like cigarettes. It can be a difficult relationship, but there are many examples of it working too.

In relation to the more contemporary music industry, if there is not a sufficient and internationally agreed upon system which ensures creative people are paid for their creative initiatives and copyrights, of course, more will be turning to other lines of work in order to support themselves. They may still be involved in their 'art' but probably at a lesser degree. I am already seeing this.

I have wondered how long it will take for certain artistic communities to 'dry up' at the scale they are existing at right now. Maybe it will all become more localised again. ...akin to the Slow Food Movement!! And not to say that is a bad thing either. Just different.

Like many things in our contemporary world, things are in great flux and the situation nor the solutions are easy or obvious , especially when there are various technological and commercial interests who are vying for supremacy or advantage. The creative folk and the public, as frequently is the case, are caught in between, sometimes left empty handed or wanting.

Even though the situation is not easy or clear, I do feel the first step towards the solution of any problem is being willing, prepared and equipped to tackle complex issues. I commend all of you in your approach to this rather less than ‘sexy’ part of the music business.

I guess the next stage is , what can or should we do about it?

And now for just a little bit more food for thought.

Here is the link to Billy Bragg's comments I was referring to earlier.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/22/opinion/22bragg.html


Thank you all once again for your comments and I hope you are finding each other's thoughts and experience interesting and valuable. I certainly am and I will join in as I can.

(I apologize for the length of this post.)

Loreena
Thanks Loreena. Almost everything you said can be applied to the world in general. The era of Mom&Pop is past, I agree to our significant loss. It was an era of character, trust and community...and civility. But technology marches on driving all the changes western civilization has seen since the beginning. The common lament for every generation has been: "It ain't like it used to be..." Indeed that's as true for someone living 150 years ago as it is today. Are we objectively better off now than someone living in the 1920's? Like Loreena sez, some changes are for the better, some not so better. In some ways we gain, in others we've lost. Sorry for getting so etherial here.
I said early in this thread, the internet and easy free downloads are new terrority that Loreena et al (Billy Bragg) are working their way through. One of djwayne's points is correct, and I'm the perfect example. I would not have discovered Loreena if it hadn't been for a free file sharing website. I wasn't looking specifically for Loreena, but the style of music. It started via Google with the keywords: celtic Irish music highland druid. Out of that came Enya and Loreena, Enya and Loreena went into LimeWire and out came The Mummers' Dance. Does she gain from this? Yes, for I immediately purshased 7 CD's, 3 concerts, a DVD, a hat and a shirt and made a promise I would continue to do so. Does this mitigate her rights to control her intellectual property? No, it does not, and knowing what I know now I strongly support those rights, because someone else might just say: screw paying for this when I can get it for free. Billy Bragg, is correct when he writes: "The claim that sites such as MySpace and Bebo are doing us a favor by promoting our work is disingenuous. Radio stations also promote our work, but they pay us a royalty that recognizes our contribution to their business. Why should that not apply to the Internet, too?". New territory...
Early on I was talking to Robin and asked what do they (QR ltd) think of LimeWire. She replied they do not like it. That started the notions of this issue churning in my head. Loreena didn't post those videos on YouTube, somebody else did and did so without permission. She didn't put her recordings up on LimeWire, somebody else did without permission. Billy Bragg says it all: "If young musicians are to have a chance of enjoying a fruitful career, then we need to establish the principle of artists’ rights throughout the Internet — and we need to do it now."
I would just replace the word "young" with the word "all", and ask the question, how do we do that and still keep the Internet a free and open place, free from massive government interference?
quote:
Originally posted by Loreena:
In relation to the more contemporary music industry, if there is not a sufficient and internationally agreed upon system which ensures creative people are paid for their creative initiatives and copyrights, of course, more will be turning to other lines of work in order to support themselves. They may still be involved in their 'art' but probably at a lesser degree. I am already seeing this.


Thank you for contributing again Loreena. No need to apologize for length, though I may have to at the end of my post. (insert self directed eye roll here)

I am a bit concerned about the statement above in that if you're having to cut back or diversify your attentions from the admin/creating/touring cycle in order to support yourself, what does that mean for the rest of the industry full of the up-and-coming or indie artists described in Billy Bragg's article?

To answer your question of what can we do about this situation, I have some ideas. Some have already been discussed on here by me and others but I think they bear repeating.

1. Support artists at the source. I still maintain it would be better for all involved if we just dealt with the artists directly, no matter where they are on the sliding scale of notoriety or wealth. The artist bears some responsibility for this, in that they have to make sure their website or other infrastructure is well laid out enough that patrons young and old will be able to get whatever it is they're looking for (CD buying information, tour information, etc). Good, Great, or even Excellent Customer Service is a must. In this age of outsourcing and trying to save a buck in the workplace, customers are starting to rebel against talking to a real live person. Of course, I know this is a top priority at QR, but for the rest of the world it's starting to be a sorely lacking part of business.

2. Support local business. I know that when I have lived in smaller communities than where I am now, I've taken great pride in the diversity of local business. Unfortunately, with the era of Walmart and other big box stores (even trying to undersell Apple's .99 cent downloads, which some may argue is not enough as it is) this is becoming increasingly hard to come by. However, it is my personal belief that we need less Box and more local community, something my own community is lacking and may have already lost. And that's another issue - many people today are just in a different mindset that they go shop at the Big Box stores and have a certain standard of living, and they could really care less that the Mom/Pop stores, maybe even if a Box store went out of business. And that is definitely the biggest obstacle and one I don't even know how to start to change, even with other issues like environmentalism, conservation, and other arenas.

3. Lay down some sort of ground rules for places like YouTube. It is my understanding that YouTube started as a way to broadcast videos or other original content that you created and wanted to share. However I think like in the case of Bebo, YouTube got sold for quite a lot of money and turned into being all about profit, not about a good infrastructure to protect illegal action like putting up videos that aren't yours and violate copyright law. As I just learned from Billy Bragg's article, I had no idea how much corporations and networking sites were taking away from musicians. This issue is I think how people think about pollution. People are used to the general space they live in that they forget what people in other states, provinces, countries are doing. It's like contemplating the vastness of space. Because people think well, "what harm can I do?" they're not thinking about the other 1 million people thinking the same thing when they engage in the same action, and lo and behold we find ourselves in the situation we're in, left asking "how did it get this bad?" So for future applications, I really think a lot of foresight and planning is going to have to be put in to any future applications that deal with information being sorted and shared because right now that's sorely lacking. I don't know how to fix it, other than to do the things I suggested in point #1. It's a big moral issue I think.

Ok that's enough. I really think if people acted on being considerate, thinking of people other than themselves and how their actions affect others, having morality over profit margins, and showed decency and respect, then a lot of these issues would be avoided. However, there's a lot of that lacking on the internet.

Angie
Uh, Ms. McKennitt, I have two questions. First of all, do you feel that piracy of music should be legal in certain countries? I brought this up because I was concerned with piracy of music in China, which I think is "legal" over there. Second, should there be legal action to be taken when artists, especially those of hip-hop and rap, sample other people's music? I'd appreciate imparting your wisdom on this matter. --Loreenya
quote:
Originally posted by Loreena:
Hello everyone,

Well you must have been reading my mind Angie, as yesterday I started to enter some comments into this thread. I wanted to share some comments another musician, Billy Bragg had to say about this subject in another column ( see below)

<snip>

Here is the link to Billy Bragg's comments I was referring to earlier.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/22/opinion/22bragg.html


Thank you all once again for your comments and I hope you are finding each other's thoughts and experience interesting and valuable. I certainly am and I will join in as I can.

(I apologize for the length of this post.)

Loreena


Thank you Loreena, and no need to apologize. Both articles by you and Billy Bragg were well written and certainly gave me food for thought.

I've been contemplating a lot of late as to how I should handle my music. I suddenly realized myself standing at a busy 'intersection', and knew that these were not the times of 'yesterday', when good ol' fashion 'get-off-the-butt' work was needed to get an honest pay.
Liken to the principle of an agriculturist that goes out and grows his/her own food if they want to eat. At least, whatever they grow, they know what they're eating.

Today, there seem to be so many 'quick schemes' flying into people's faces, that the first impression I receive is, 'easy come, easy go', and that's a bit of a scary feeling. Not knowing what's going to happen to my music.

Extracting a phrase from what Billy Bragg wrote in his article:

"The claim that sites such as MySpace and Bebo are doing us a favor by promoting our work is disingenuous. Radio stations also promote our work, but they pay us a royalty that recognizes our contribution to their business. Why should that not apply to the Internet, too?"

Indeed, this very notion has crossed my mind, as well. It is beguiling. I want to know where my assets are going.

There were times, when I just sat on the nearby park bench and wondered, "Is it even worth getting started?", then I would think, "....but everything I've created would be wasted...it would be a massive desecration to myself...I may be a late bloomer, but I've got enough energy in me to pull this off....but what direction?"

So, I thank you Loreena for having started this thread subject, because I'm gleaning a lot of information here.

I ardently agree with Billy Bragg.

Kind regards,
Shan
Hi Loreena, thanks for chiming in. Yes, the music business is a tough business, so is the factory business, the housing business, the restaurant business, the banking business, in fact, things are tough all over for many people. Some people though, are still doing well, so it goes to show that you really have to work hard and be at the top of your game just to make it successful. It's not totally impossible, but not easy.

I'm the wrong person to ask on how to make money in the music business, as I have made some, but not much, but I still tinker around in my studio, because it gives me something to do, and I enjoy it.

As with any business, there are no guarantees, but there are opportunities, which must be pursued. In the music business, currently I believe iTunes is burning up the charts with selling music downloads. I've read they sold 3 billion downloads over the last five years....that's a lot of business going to musicians...so you'd think somebody is making money. However the problem is there's 6 million songs on iTunes so what money is being made is being spread out very thinly. So live performances become the money making tool, as long as you can keep your road and traveling expenses within reason, and you can sell concert tickets. Some artists can do this, some can't, so this may become the determining factor on who makes it as an artist and who doesn't.

It's a cold cruel world out there, and not just in the music business, times are tough all over. So the best thing is to work hard, hope for the best, and be thankful for whatever you do get. What I'm finding out here in my old age, is that your health is what becomes important, as no matter what you finances or musical aspirations are, you need your good health.

Sorry for being so long, but those are my thoughts.
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:

<snip>

It's a cold cruel world out there, and not just in the music business, times are tough all over. So the best thing is to work hard, hope for the best, and be thankful for whatever you do get. What I'm finding out here in my old age, is that your health is what becomes important, as no matter what you finances or musical aspirations are, you need your good health.

Sorry for being so long, but those are my thoughts.


Dj -

Well said.

Kind regards,
Shan
Hello everyone,

The first step to be taken for the solution of a problem is being aware of the problem, and I think Loreena is doing very well in giving us "food for thought" whatever our conclusions are on the current situation of the music industry.
However, there seems to be needed more than reflection in such a complex issue with so many parties involved and with rather different interests.
When I ask to myself if music should be free, another question runs to my mind: Is there really anything free in this life? Well, I think nothing is for free, and regarding music, somehow we will pay for what is happening now. For, what kind of music do we think there will be in these free networking sites? Maybe, rather poor. And, how free downloads will affect the public, the listeners?
Music is more than a pastime. Music is emotion, and help us to know ourselves better as individuals and as a whole in this world.

I hope I made myself understood and apologize for any mistakes with my English.

Kind and warm regards,

Antonia.
I've been thinking about how much money artists stand to gain from an iTunes/online download sort of model, and I found this on an internet search.

quote:
Derek Sivers from CD Baby has magnanimously shared some good news in a mass email to his clients and on a recent Pho post..."Apple iTunes USA just raised their wholesale payout to $.70 cents per download", even though song pricing remains at $.99 cents each...Artists signed on with CD Baby's Digital Distribution who are available on iTunes can now make $.63 cents per song - which is incredibly generous when compared to other distribution methods...Also, For the iTunes music stores that are outside the U.S., the recent payout averages are: iTunes Europe: $.88 cents, iTunes UK: $.88 cents and iTunes Canada: $.62 cents...In addition, when iTunes launches in Japan and Australia soon, CD Baby's digital catalog will reportedly be in both. (Of course, just being available "for sale" in cyberspace isn't enough...Copyright holders need to develop and refine methods to drive traffic to the sites to generate sales.)


(this from: http://billboard.blogs.com/billboardpostplay/2005/07/apple_itunes_ra.html )

I am unclear here as to if this scenario is only through CD Baby - like if Loreena's involvement with Verve is anything like what I just quoted. However, this is interesting to absorb, and more food for thought as it were.
Hello Loreena,
I don't have any real good advise on this as to where to go from here. As I have previously stated, I buy originals from the artist, to support them and the maw and paw music shops. Unfortunatley it is legal to download music and make copies of it. I would say that the laws would have to change, to make a difference and perhaps the format of the music. There is so much out there already it would be very difficult to change now.
Perhaps a new format for the new music, and lots of smaller venue concerts.
Robert.
quote:
Originally posted by Robert:
Hello Loreena,
I don't have any real good advice on this as to where to go from here. As I have previously stated, I buy originals from the artist, to support the artists, and the maw and paw music shops. Unfortunatley it is legal to download music and make copies of it. I would say that the laws would have to change, to make a difference and perhaps the format of the music. There is so much out there already it would be very difficult to change now.
Perhaps a new format for the new music, and lots of smaller venue concerts.
Robert.
quote:
Originally posted by Ramona:
quote:
Originally posted by Robert:
Unfortunatley it is legal to download music and make copies of it.
Robert.


Tell that to this woman.......

http://wcco.com/local/music.piracy.downloading.2.370684.html


As everyone knows, I would be the first to say that downloading music and making copies is illegal, but I really need to express the flip side of the coin here...

I think RIAA is feeling a little too 'self-righteous' and eager to push their might weight. They could have driven the message home just as well, without going overboard in crippling one woman's financial life.

And RIAA says, "We hope this will drive the message home". They could have driven the message home in another way. The poor woman is now the 'icon' of RIAA's tyrannical power.

Some people just don't seem to understand where the 'pivot point' is, and they go around waving banners of victory to an extreme.

I'm an ardent player of Chess, and even in Chess there are 'dignified rules' as to what should be done with the enemy. There is such a thing as integrity. RIAA has not shown this in the case.

If RIAA continues to have this 'hunt-and-kill' attitude, they may succeed in diminishing 'piracy', but the 'artists' will also get affected.

On RIAA's home page, there's a link indicating: Report Piracy

I can just imagine the mess. But then, on the other hand, it could very well backfire in RIAA's face...people won't report anything. They'll just find other ways of getting what they want.

It's obvious RIAA wanted to win this case very badly, but they don't come out looking 'honorable'.

Back to the drawing board on dealing with 'Piracy'.

Kind regards,
Shan-Lyn
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Here's a rather long article about the Warner Group, to give you another perspective of today's music business. Looking at the amount of debt they've incurred, being an independent artist has it's benefits.......

<snip?

Bronfman, more than his peers, has to live with the import of the Warren Buffett dictum that when you have even a well-run company in a lousy industry, it's the reputation of the industry that remains intact.


Thanks for sharing Dj. It was a bit of a long read, but the impression was screaming out that the 'music industry' has clearly become a 'monopoly game'.

Shan
quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Here's a rather long article about the Warner Group, to give you another perspective of today's music business. Looking at the amount of debt they've incurred, being an independent artist has it's benefits.......

<snip?



Bronfman, more than his peers, has to live with the import of the Warren Buffett dictum that when you have even a well-run company in a lousy industry, it's the reputation of the industry that remains intact.


Thanks for sharing Dj. It was a bit of a long read, but the impression was screaming out that the 'music industry' has clearly become a 'monopoly game'.

Shan


Sorry about it being such a long article, but it does cover many points. What's shocking to me is that a big company like Warner is so deep in debt.($2.6 Billion) They have to pay out almost $4 million dollars a week in debt service...that's incredible !! No wonder they're screaming about downloads. They've got lots of parties to pay for !!!
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Here's a rather long article about the Warner Group, to give you another perspective of today's music business. Looking at the amount of debt they've incurred, being an independent artist has it's benefits.......

<snip>



P.S. Reflecting, there was a time when the parents of past generations would tell their children, "You can't make a career out of music". There just might have been a little bit of 'indirect' truth in this, with all the companies swooping in for the larger take on the business.

And the musician stands at the intersection. Baffled, and thinking, "....and my parents thought there would be no recognition in this??".

Musicians should have a set of 'Commandments' of their own.

1. Love your music with all your might, soul and heart.

2. Do not take your music in vain.

3. Respect the sabbath day of going 'busking' out on the streets and in the parks.

4. Respect what your parents have said, indirectly.

5. Beware of the mighty 'greed gods' from the huge city 'corporate business' Babel towers that are always strategizing to take advantage of you every step of the way.

6. Thou shalt not kill the mighty 'greed gods', no matter how frustrating they can be.

7. Do not lie to yourself about the 'mighty greed gods' by 'idologizing them.

8. Do not judge them, but take your music and walk out their offices.

9. Do not covet someone else's music.

10. Eat, drink and be merry!


Shan Cool
You forgot Commandment 11: If you can play bass guitar, you can always work...

quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Here's a rather long article about the Warner Group, to give you another perspective of today's music business. Looking at the amount of debt they've incurred, being an independent artist has it's benefits.......

<snip>



P.S. Reflecting, there was a time when the parents of past generations would tell their children, "You can't make a career out of music". There just might have been a little bit of 'indirect' truth in this, with all the companies swooping in for the larger take on the business.

And the musician stands at the intersection. Baffled, and thinking, "....and my parents thought there would be no recognition in this??".

Musicians should have a set of 'Commandments' of their own.

1. Love your music with all your might, soul and heart.

2. Do not take your music in vain.

3. Respect the sabbath day of going 'busking' out on the streets and in the parks.

4. Respect what your parents have said, indirectly.

5. Beware of the mighty 'greed gods' from the huge city 'corporate business' Babel towers that are always strategizing to take advantage of you every step of the way.

6. Thou shalt not kill the mighty 'greed gods', no matter how frustrating they can be.

7. Do not lie to yourself about the 'mighty greed gods' by 'idologizing them.

8. Do not judge them, but take your music and walk out their offices.

9. Do not covet someone else's music.

10. Eat, drink and be merry!


Shan Cool
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Sorry about it being such a long article, but it does cover many points. What's shocking to me is that a big company like Warner is so deep in debt.($2.6 Billion) They have to pay out almost $4 million dollars a week in debt service...that's incredible !! No wonder they're screaming about downloads. They've got lots of parties to pay for !!!


Dj, I enjoyed the read, no worries. But Warner admitted to making blunders. Like 'writing off $18-million on an investment with Bulldog Entertainment Group, and the spending of $73 million in buying Roadrunner Records. It would appear that they became too confident and therefore paid a heavy price by being negligent.

If I were a musician having signed up with them, I would feel a 'shaky ground' under my feet. It would be an insecure feeling of trusting a corporation that I believed had more business savvy than not being able to read the 'fine print'.

The 'god Warner' threw the dice, and lost. And how many times will they feel they can keep throwing the dice without any dire consequences?

Should a musician gamble away their hard work with business corporations where their executives sit behind their desks selling the idea that they're the best? Waiting for the 'raise'?

"The debt service of about $200 million per year is about 25 per cent of the market cap," the message-board correspondent wrote. "And these guys are giving themselves raises?"

No wonder they're in debt.

Shan
Let me get this straight, its illegal to download, burn and copy music, and the artists aren't giving it away for free.
Sounds like theft doesn't it.

I wonder if the active musicians could get royalties from the companies who manufacture the burners, and the mp3 players, blank CD, DVD, Bill Gates, etc. Most of these devices would be useless without music, for most people.
Robert.
Warner to Bet $20 Million on Song Rentals
5/28/2008 By Shane Sinnott

According to the website of Michael Robertson, a longtime player in the world of high-tech entrepreneurialism, Warner Music has invested $20 Million in the website lala.com, which is soon to offer a service where you can "buy" songs for ten cents.

The setup is a catalogue of over five million songs, each of which you can stream once for free through your web browser. After that, you can "add" a song to your personal collection for a single credit, which costs ten cents. The catch: the songs aren’t downloadable. You can listen to them as much as you want, but only through a web browser in your personal collection area of the lala.com site — they can’t be put on MP3 players, or iTunes.

Warner is gambling that you’ll pay ten cents to stream something that you can probably get easily (and permanently) for free. This might not be as crazy as it sounds: while I don’t think anybody is going to use the site for serious music buying, for the price of a CD you get 200 songs that you can listen to from any computer with an internet connection anytime you want - perfect for those with office jobs or prone to attending parties with bad music.

A quick look through the catalogue rendered it decent enough as Black Dice, Erics Trip, Charlie Parker and Staple Singers all turned up hits. The site hasn’t yet launched publicly, but you can try it in beta — and you get 50 free credits for signing up.

**********************


Yikes, it looks like I'm already in business with Warner, as I have a page set up on their new lala website here .....

http://next.lala.com/#artist/djwayne2000


hahahahahahaha
quote:
Originally posted by Anxious 2:
Hi djwayne

Laughing my ass off Big Grin (sorry for my inconvenient language)

Was this before or after Warner invested in the website?

I signed up with lala thru TuneCore a couple of weeks ago and had no idea it was owned by Warner until yesterday. I've been getting some nasty comments about the article on another website, so I decided to delete it from there and here too.


quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Yikes, it looks like I'm already in business with Warner, as I have a page set up on their new lala website here .....

http://next.lala.com/#artist/djwayne2000

hahahahahahaha
Very Imprecator Full Segmented Markets IS the result of a big cash Monopoly Music market. Normal reaction. We re So Human . Artists & singers (career 25 years and more) find a more profitable biseness with direct concerts and Tours with their targeted markets & surveys .
Jack
Thanks Shan
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
quote:
Originally posted by Shan-Lyn:
quote:
Originally posted by djwayne:
Here's a rather long article about the Warner Group, to give you another perspective of today's music business. Looking at the amount of debt they've incurred, being an independent artist has it's benefits.......

<snip?



Bronfman, more than his peers, has to live with the import of the Warren Buffett dictum that when you have even a well-run company in a lousy industry, it's the reputation of the industry that remains intact.


Thanks for sharing Dj. It was a bit of a long read, but the impression was screaming out that the 'music industry' has clearly become a 'monopoly game'.

Shan


Sorry about it being such a long article, but it does cover many points. What's shocking to me is that a big company like Warner is so deep in debt.($2.6 Billion) They have to pay out almost $4 million dollars a week in debt service...that's incredible !! No wonder they're screaming about downloads. They've got lots of parties to pay for !!!
Dear Loreena,
This response is a long time coming to you, but I wanted to express my opinion on the question you raised regarding paying for music. I’m at my job, waiting for the computer to spit out the information I need. I’m also listening to your CD “The Book of Secrets”. I purchased the CD from your website.
My job, although it pays me well and the benefits are wonderful, is boring and repetitive. Having music to listen to while here helps to make the days go by faster and less painfully.
My work provides a valuable function for my supervisors. I expect to be paid for my efforts. If I go to a doctor, and he/she uses their knowledge to heal me, they expect to be paid. If I hire a painter, a plumber, a landscaper, they expect to be paid in return for their providing me with their skills and talents.
Your music and the musical talents of other artists I appreciate and admire add to my life and make it more enjoyable. Just as I wouldn’t steal from a shop, I would not steal from you, by not paying you for your “product”, your music.
Further more, if artists are not paid, then they can’t make a living from the “work” they do and will be forced to stop creating. If you were not able to support yourself from your music, how would you meet your everyday expenses?
I have purchased your DVD from Alahambra and I am looking forward to watching it. I wish you many more creative, fruitful years.
Dear Loreena,

On June 27ht, the US Houe of Representives passed legislation permitting record companies to recieve payment from radio stations that play their artists in order to recapture some of the loss due to the internet.

From what has been discussed is the record companies will receive payment from the radio or the businesses that advertise on the stations, then to retrieve their losses the price of the products being advertised will go up and once again it will be at the consumers expense.

I just wonder if this is going to help or if it will just add to the mountain of problems that already exists? Are record companies greedy or are they loosing huge amounts of money? Have you noticed that you are losing money from free downloads off the 'net?

Peace, beauty, and health be with you,
Gina
quote:
Originally posted by Gina:
Dear Loreena,

On June 27ht, the US Houe of Representives passed legislation permitting record companies to recieve payment from radio stations that play their artists in order to recapture some of the loss due to the internet.

From what has been discussed is the record companies will receive payment from the radio or the businesses that advertise on the stations, then to retrieve their losses the price of the products being advertised will go up and once again it will be at the consumers expense.

I just wonder if this is going to help or if it will just add to the mountain of problems that already exists? Are record companies greedy or are they loosing huge amounts of money? Have you noticed that you are losing money from free downloads off the 'net?

Peace, beauty, and health be with you,
Gina


Gina -

These are very good questions. It seems to be a vicious circle of sorts. Sometimes, what appears to be 'greed', is actually a necessity to 'balance the leger'. The record companies need to at least come at par. As well, it all depends on which record company.

It would help to know which ones are striving the hardest to retrieve monies.

I do know where 'royalties' are concerned, the radio stations had to send in a log of the artist's music played. This was many moons ago. Perhaps, the stations slacked throughout time?

I would venture to say if the record companies are going to 'up' their prices for consumers, then the artists signed on must be worthy enough for consumers to want to invest in their music without their being disgruntled. The record companies would probably go through a 'triage process' for 'quality artists'. Sad to say, but the remaining aspiring artists would have to resort to the internet.

A very interesting 'classification system' of musicians is unfolding/emerging. With a lot of competition.

Kind regards,
Shan-Lyn
Dear Loreena,
I feel so glad and grateful to read your post here, I didn't think you would visit the board yourself since you should be really busy with your work. Smiler

I'd like to share my thoughts with you about your questions.

1, If music should be free: if everything were free, then I guess we'd be living in heaven. When a mother brings her son his meal, when a wife makes her husband a shirt, they won't cost a penny, because they are families. If we share the world as a family, then everything is free and we get heaven. But since we are here now, if music is free, how should the musicians make their living? So, I guess music will never be free, and we should pay our beloved musicians as to show our gratefulness for the beautiful music.
2, I really don't like digital downloads. When I listen to your music, I'd like to hold the booklet and read every word on it. I think the words and the music are both important. Those digital downloads make me feel "empty"(don't know how to describe my feeling since I'm not an English speaker, hope you could understand me Razzer).

Best regards to you and all the people here. I'm really looking forward to your new recording this winter, Loreena. Smiler
Cocoa
a) Do you think music should be free?
In my view the music are free now. Everybody can access using internet to all kind of music ilegal and free. Is a fact. This situation have 2 different consequences: First the music can be hearing by people that in other way never listen it. And this is a free publicity. By other hand the people can decide not to pay for music and that is a big lost of money.

What makes the people buy nowadays a disc knowing that they can download it illegally?
I believe that it is the important question....

Many people, your unconditional fans, always are going to buy your CD but there is an important group of population who will download your music of Internet and there is a fine line that separates the fact of be able to buy the CD or of not. I believe that there are ways to cross the line.
A good question would be .... you... that normally you pirate music... what does convince you to buying the original CD and what not?
b) Do you prefer to get your music online or from a music store? Music store but i am old!!! probably new generations prefers other ways.
Usually I download music to know the album but in the time to buy it.... Music Store

Cintia.
Should music be free? In a word, no. The artists work too hard to not be financially rewarded for the popularity their music can bring. I have no problem paying reasonable rates for music.

Do I prefer to buy online or at a store? Well, for most artists, I prefer to buy online MP3's. However, there are certain artists that I buy the real thing, Loreena being one of them. I enjoy the artwork of the inserts and like having a hard copy. I, however, do prefer to buy online and have it shipped.

Thank you for taking the timet o listen to your community Loreena!
Dear Loreena

I believe that, in a capitalist society in which we live as we are all entitled to charge for our work(we are all entitled to collect money for our work),logically musicians / artists as well.
When everything is free (music, but also medical care, electricity, water, bread ....) that humanity will have taken a big step.

The online music is the future, but today is more incomplete / defective (for quality and limitations of the format). I think we need to improve the overall quality. In this way I think music fans will respond even better.

(Thanks Smiler)

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