To Spotify, or not to Spotify – for that is the question of the age: Whether to be popular and bought and paid for – or unpopular and unpaid – whether to suffer from the loneliness of being among the unheard, or the disdain of the few who hate, hate, hate you for who you are and what they perceive you to be. Yeah, okay … so my Shakespeare is shaky; it’s been 40+ years since I’ve read any. But for those who record today the issue is among the most talked about and debated.
Taylor Swift made news recently when her record label deleted her new album “1989” from Spotify – instead forcing the album into the physical and digital marketplaces, primarily Target and iTunes. Whether this was a good long term business strategy, or simply a shrewd way to force Taylor’s fans to buy instead of stream, it at least excited a conversation about how RECORDING ARTISTS are paid for the work they produce for our enjoyment.
Wait! This ain’t about Colorado music! — Yes. It. Is. This continues to be a conversation that dominates the local artist scene. It’s time we at least start to acknowledge that streaming is in – buying is out. NOT SO FAST, you say? Okay. Which is more popular, iTunes download store or Pandora? Pandora or Spotify? And let’s not forget YouTube, the single most dominant music discovery site in the world.
How many actual physical cds did you buy in 2014? Did you buy those physical cds from a store, or from CDBaby, Amazon, or a band website or at a show? Or did you, like most of us today, simply dial up Spotify or YouTube – places where virtually NO MONEY IS MADE (or so little it may as well be none) for our friends who spend upwards of $12,000 or more to produce a full length album at one of our incredible regional recording studios – or who make investments totalling THOUSANDS to produce records in home studios. This is NOT an inexpensive venture we’re talking about here.
For me it’s about fans BUYING from the merch table at the show. It’s about spending not only the $5 cover (are you kidding me?) – or the $15 on three beers (which the band gets nothing of ) – but about spending $5-$15 on an EP or LP cd at a show – the last real place we’re likely to see any measurable sales for most of our friends in scene.
Speaking of Christmas – got wonderful news hours after show production deadline this week that Poco (and I believe Richie Furay separately), Firefall, the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and Manassas will all be inducted into the Colorado Music Hall of Fame at the Paramount Theater on Friday January 9, 2015. Show details to be announced later this month. Congrats to all of the incredible Colorado musicians past and present who will be a part of that incredible gift.
VIDEO PICK OF THE WEEK
Just in time too! New from Shatterproof.
OFFSTAGE BEYOND THE MUSIC
PLAYLIST S8|EP43 NOV 2014
(D) = debut of single, ep, or lp
(N) = new single from previously debuted ep or lp
The Apples in Stereo “Shine A Light” from Tone Soul Evolution (1997)
The Christines “In Your Space” from Living At the Bottom of the Sea (1996)
(N) Longest Day Of The Year “Black Horse Canyon” from Carapace (2014)
Musketeer Gripweed “End of the Day” from Floods and Fires (2014)
Calder’s Revolvers “See To Believe” from Sunday Morning (2014)
(D) Chimney Choir “Motion” from Motion (2015)
Toad In the Hole “Wiser” from APT 203 (2013)
Big Gigantic “Touch the Sky” from The Night Is Young (2014)
(D) Danielle Ate the Sandwich “Dream A Little Dream of Me” from Dream A Little Dream of Me (2015)
Joe Johnson “Don’t Let Your Blue Eyes Cry” from A Time to Dance (2011)
The Samples “The Whole World Can Sing” from America (2014)
Rich Lamb “Deja Blue” from Music Along the Way (2008)
Acoustic Junction “Where Is She Now” from Surrounded by Change (1995)
Sixteen Horsepower “Coal Black Horses” from 16 Horsepower (1995)
(D) Leftover Salmon “Western Sky” from High Country (2015)
Sofie Reed “Down By the Riverside” from Red Hen (2014)
Tennis “I’m Callin’” from Ritual In Repeat (2014)
(D) Ark Life “Very Fine Friends” from Very Fine Friends (2015)
Reed Foehl “Caroline” from Lost in the West (2014)
(D) Lauren Brombert “Love’s Carousel” from Love’s Carousel (2015)
Arthur Lee Land “Cracked Open” from Cracked Open (2013)
The Motet “Afrotech” from Instrumental Dissent (2007)