The Biggest Myths musicians are told?
Oscar Wilde once said ‘man is not himself when he is his own person. Give him a mask, and he’ll tell you the truth’, though this particular theory doesn’t seem to always apply to musicians; the idea of the stage persona is familiar to most music fans. But in music, past and present, the music industry has gifted us with a number of characters that contain certain myths in addition to being told myth themselves. This piece will investigate the certain myths that these musicians are told throughout their career:
Like any myth, whether it be in gambling, sports or indeed the music industry, we never know if they are deemed true, hence it being a myth, yet some are more realistic than others and let’s have a look at these certain myths:
Getting a record deal means you will be instantly successful within the music industry
When you see artists/bands getting their record deals, you automatically think that they’re going to make it big in the music scene; at the end of the day, they have been signed and now have a massive record deal. However, did you know that 98% of all acts that sign to major labels indeed fail, so simplifying this a whole lot more, this means that 98 out of the 100 artists who actually get the deal don’t actually recoup enough money to pay for their advances and end up getting dropped before their second album; sometimes their first!
Windowing is an effective strategy
You must be thinking, what the heck does ‘windowing’ mean? Well in the music industry, windowing means holding off putting your album on streaming services for a window of time to maximise sales. It was known to be a rather effective strategy in 2012. But that was then, were now in 2017 and most things are digital now days and if people can’t get your music on iTunes or YouTube they will just move on.
Streaming is bad for music
This leads onto my next section. A CD or Download sale is treated equally no matter how great the album is. It’s a one-time payment to never be earned again. Now the problem with streaming, if a song is great and will played over and OVER again leads to earning more than just a single sale ever could, streaming pays less initially, but much more in the long run, only if the music is good and addictive of course.
Major record labels are leading the music industry
Okay so there’s load money to be made working with major record labels, but leaders they are not, their album creation and marketing strategies are paint by number compared to the old school music industry. Look at Chance the rapper for example, unsigned, yet making a massive name for himself across the globe.
The problem with record labels, once you have signed to them, 80% of you work becomes their property, you lose most of the rights to your creation which can seem rather daunting for artists and this is why Chance right now refuses to sign any deals.