Topic 5: Sound Recording Industry
Topic 5: Sound Recording Industry MC 101-740
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This 3 page Study Guide was uploaded by Destiny Giebe on Monday February 22, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to MC 101-740 at Southeast Missouri State University taught by Frederick Christopher Jones in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 28 views. For similar materials see Mass Comm & Society in Journalism and Mass Communications at Southeast Missouri State University.
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Date Created: 02/22/16
Sound Recording: Industry So you want to be a rock star? Millions of screaming fans, fancy cars, a huge mansion in Beverly Hills with diamond -‐studded toilet bowls. Not so fast -‐ you might get the screaming fans but you'll have to make due with a Hyundai and a two -‐bedroom home in Gordonville. The average musical artist receives a percentage of record sales, which might work out to $1 for every album sold. Suppose the group's album goes gold -‐ that comes out to $500,000. However, the group has to re-‐pay record company advances and production costs. They might also be charged for music videos and unsold records. When it's all said and done, each member in the group might clear a standard middle-‐class salary. I just hope Slipknot doesn't move in to my neighborhood. RECORD LABELS Sound recording is big business, bringing in billions each year. So if the musicians aren't making all the money, who is? All the cash is being made by a handful of record labels. There are currently four major labels that control 85% of the world music market. These labels comprise a global oligopoly, a term used when only a few companies control most of an industry. Listed below are the four major labels, as well as some of the small labels that belong to each: MAJOR LABEL ASSOCIATED LABELS Universal Geffen, Interscope, Island, MCA Sony BMG Columbia, Epic Warner Music Atlantic, Elektra, Warner Bros. EMI Capitol, Virgin, Parlophone This leaves a mere 15% of the music pie for the small independent labels. In order to compete, independents have to take risks that the majors might not be willing to take. And if they are lucky enough to sign a successful act, they will immediately feel the pressure from a major label. In fact, major labels look to the indies for new talent, buying out smaller labels to sign promising bands. For example, Warner Music paid $20 million to buy out Sub Pop, the Seattle label that recorded pioneering grunge band Nirvana. Hey all of you Beliebers out there! DNirvana's breakthrough album "Nevermind" to find the coolest new tunes from Juwas their first major label release after indie find him on Island Records. label Sub Pop was bought out. RECORD PROMOTION In the 1980s, the listless days of my youth were shattered by a new cable network -‐ MTV. Pumping out the synthesized rhythms of Duran Duran and Flock of Seagulls, MTV sent teenagers into a frenzy, convincing our fragile young minds that leg warmers and mohawks were actually cool. MTV's impact on the music industry was enormous. Few artists could find commercial success without the help of music videos. The success of MTV altered the music landscape. Artistic talent became less important than look s and synchronized dance moves. Imagine how successful Brittney Spears would have been if she couldn't dance and looked like Rosie O'Donnell. However, MTV's power is starting to fade with the growing popularity of Internet music. Of course there are seemingly endless ways to get music on the Internet...legal and illegal. Apple's iTunes is the current leader among music download sites, but other sites like Spotify offer interesting alternatives. Sites like Pandora will create radio stations based on your own musical tastes. Here's an experiment for you. Create a Pandora station that blends the music of Ozzy Osbourne and the soothing nursery pop of The Wiggles. The results will give you chills. I'm sorry, but this is not the "Real World". Regardless, MTV has been dora has become one of the most popular shaping trends in music and culture net radio sites in the world. My favorite since the early 80s. Pandora station? Sufjan Stevens Radio.
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