Monday, June 09, 2008

AC/DC Coming to a Wal-Mart Near You

So AC/DC is going the way of the Eagles, in this case with the blessing of their record company, Sony BMG who brokered the deal. According to today's Wall St Journal, their next album of new material will be sold exclusively by Wal-Mart; therefore, excluding the remaining record retailers who have supported the band for years. Being that I work with Amoeba (3 record stores in CA, including the record store of all record stores in LA), I find this to be disheartening to say the least. Here's another artist that relied on these same stores in the past to get their music out there. I guess they feel that by putting the album exclusively in Wal-Mart, they'll be in front of more eyes and therefore, generate more impulse buying. Granted there are fewer and fewer record stores, but the ones that remain are dedicated to music. Can you say that about Wal-Mart? The article also mentioned that Wal-Mart is cutting back on CD shelf space in the stores. When Wal-Mart eliminates CD's where will these artists turn to? I'm surprised that AC/DC is taking this tactic. I felt they were a band of their fans. I'm sure their touring brings in plenty of dollars and CD sales are a slim margin of their profits, then again they did do a huge deal with Epic Records, which may be the reason for the sell out. How far will artists move away from the core of what made their careers? How important is it to alienate the believers to sell a few more units?

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