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Music industry people mostly talk nonsense

January 23, 2009

This article was posted on the BBC News website this week as the annual Midem conference in Cannes drew to a halt:

Here, a few names from the music industry talk about what they see as the troubling issues and what to do about them.

Doc McGee appears to be living in cloud-cuckoo land about how business works and I’m glad he’s not my manager. The corporate structure of record labels is intrinsic now – it can’t be changed.  If experienced bean-counters can’t make their business model viable in the long term, a bunch of idealistic hippies isn’t going to do it.  No – it’s the business model that has to go.

Donovan is an old  hippy and appears to still have a hippy’s naive belief in human goodwill.  Sorry – a reminder to downloaders that it costs money to make music will not lead to a spontaneous opening of wallets to hand over the moolah.  Get real!

Rick Reed works for a royalty processing organisation and thinks it would be great if royalties were paid properly and on time to musicians.  Well, do it then! We don’t work for royalty-paying organisations but you do! Doh!

Shabs Jobanputra talks some sense.  I hope that Relentless Records is actually doing what its spokesperson suggests.

Iain Watt appears to be another industry person blaming the public and expecting the public to change behaviour en mass. It ain’t gonna happen, mate, which is why you need a new business model. Haven’t you been listening?

Bohbi FM makes a good point. Say it like it is, bro!

Brian Message, Radiohead’s manager, says something positive in opposition to the doom and gloom of the other industry moguls, and at least Radiohead have experimented with a different business model. I hope they don’t retreat into protectionism and old-school record company behaviour.

Harvey Goldsmith seems to hold to Iain Watt’s crazy notion that the public will mysteriously change its entire mentality. It won’t. Get over it and come up with a better and more equitable business model.

Tom Findlay complains about the way festivals restrict the bookings of acts by not allowing them to appear at other festivals in the same season. Well, when the acts stop accepting these iniquitous contracts, the practice will stop. Simple.

Panos Panay talks sense. This is the new world order.

Maria Butterfly says go see more local live music. Yeah, why not?

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