Thanks to the internet, there are now more ways than ever to get music. But this hasn't allowed smaller artists to get a bigger share of the financial pie. In fact, the top 1 percent of artists now collect 77 percent of all revenue from recorded music.
In recent years, people have been buying more and more vinyl records—and now, demand for music etched into this aging format is so hot that the country's largest plant is increasing its capacity by more than 50 percent.
You go, Britain. Sources claim the country will legalize the copying of CDs and DVDs for personal use. It could also make it legal for people to use copyrighted works in a parody without permission.
According to CNN, Apple and other digital download services are in talks with record labels to up music files from 16-bit to pristine, high-fidelity 24-bit. But while Macs can handle 24-bit music already, iPods and iPhones would need to be retooled to accommodate the sweet sounds. Soon please! [CNN]
Instead of eulogies for a music industry too slow to adapt to the digital age, its mourners should just print up this chart on huge poster boards. And while digital sales are helping staunch the bleeding, as you can see here it's not nearly enough.
Just how much moolah do musicians earn from online downloads and streams? For the artist to earn the US minimum wage ($1,160/month), they need 12,339 iTunes downloads or 849,817 streams on Rhapsody.
The number of major record labels seems set to drop to a mere three, as EMI has failed to make a deal for North American distribution rights with either Universal or Sony. Updated
It's a lousy time to be a record label. Profits are tanking, bands are angry—OK Go just ditched EMI—and YouTube and BitTorrent changed the game. Still, some labels are transforming themselves to help musicians in the digital age.
If any band could justify not selling individual tracks, its Pink Floyd. What, you just want Summer '69 but not Atom Heart Mother Suite? Come on. Now, you won't have that option.
Warner Music, one of the four largest record labels, is upset with just how free their music is online, and they're not talking about piracy: They're worried about legit, ad-supported services like Last.fm, Spotify and Pandora. Uh oh.
Bonooooooorrrrlllllllll! I know you are a rock star and a defender of the planet and I really like Joshua Tree and Rattle & Hum and even Zooropa, but come on, "reverse Robin Hood"? So wrong. And it gets worse:
Tim Quirk was the singer of punk-pop outfit Too Much Joy, signed by Warner Bros. in 1990. Now he's an executive at an online music service, giving him insight on digital sales data and just how labels fudge their numbers.* A word here about that unrecouped balance, for those uninitiated…
We've been here before, so no long post necessary, but it's worth mentioning, again, that illegal downloaders, the alleged scourge of the music industry, are really the ones who buy the most music.
Dear music industry: go fuck yourself.
Any hope that the pay-what-you-want release of In Rainbows would set a precedent for Radiohead albums of the future has been dashed. Tortured treehugger and all-round good bloke Thom Yorke set the record straight yesterday, calling the band's decision to let their fans agree on a price on their last release a…
If you picked up Nine Inch Nails'Year Zero remix album, 1337-ly titled Y34RZ3r0r3m1x3d, you probably noticed the second disc "halo 25 data," containing the multitrack master files for every song from Year Zero. Some of them had already been posted online not long after its initial release, and that experiment's…