Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Adding to Previous Entry via Courtney Love

When the judgment came against, the RIAA sought damages of $150,000 for each major-label-"owned" musical track in MP3's database. Multiply by 80,000 CDs, and could owe the gatekeepers $120 billion.

But what about the Plimsouls? Why can't pay each artist a fixed amount based on the number of their downloads? Why on earth should pay $120 billion to four distribution companies, who in most cases won't have to pay a nickel to the artists whose copyrights they've stolen through their system of organized theft?

The above is actually an excerpt from a piece Courtney Love wrote for Salon in 2000 that was sent to me today. It plays into my previous thoughts and it seems as timely as ever.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Does the Artist Share in the Revenue?

Google is in the news again, this time involving a month long test of it’s video advertising system. It has Warner Music and Sony BMG as partners in this test. They will share in advertising revenue generated through AdSense, which will pay every time an impression is generated when their music videos are viewed. I’ve been reading a lot about this and there seems to be no mention of what happens to the money the record labels receive. Is that money shared with those artists whose videos are being viewed? I’m guessing that since this is a new model, these provisions were not written into artists’ contracts. As an artist manager, I want to know that my client is receiving his/her fair share of profits generated by their art. I will continue to look into this.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


Listening to an album from start to finish has become passe lately. In an iPod culture there is shuffle, which means songs, not necessarily grouped the way there were meant to be played. iPod is more like Top 40 radio of yore. A great album consists of great songs performed not always by great musicians, but certainly those with a passion for what they are doing. The average listener probably doesn't think about why Caroline No is the closing track on Pet Sounds or why Brand New Cadillac follows London Calling. There is an art to sequencing an album properly. When vinyl was king, an artist could split their work into two sides, essentially having two opening tracks. There is only one track to lead off a CD and one lead track for the iTunes user to hear. Sequencing is still very important to many musicians and listeners. That lead track sets the tone for what the listener is in for. That song hopefully signals a Pandora's box of musical gems. The listener should be taken through a journey of highs, lows, middles and it all should sound seamless. The New York Times had an article about the lost art of listening to an album. Their claim was that most people hear whole albums in concert these days, such as Lou Reed performing Berlin from start to finish or Brian Wilson recreating Pet Sounds. The piece hit home as All Night Chemists are preparing their sophomore album. Much thought and agonizing goes into putting the right songs in the right place. It looks like the first two songs are set. More hours will be spent on making sure the rest of it falls into its destined place, making this a total body of music - so one day it can be performed in it's entirety on a stage in front of many music loving fans.