Digital Rights Agency (DRA) is a company that negotiates distribution deals with digital music services by using the collective bargaining power of its rapidly expanding group of label clients. Since its formal launch in early 2003, DRA has struck up partnerships with over 30 independent labels. FMC’s Kristin Thomson speaks with Tuhin about DRA’s goals and its unique strengths in helping independent labels gain a foothold in the growing digital distribution world. read more
FMC’s Kristin Thomson sits down with Kevin Arnold of IODA – the Independent Online Distribution Alliance – a digital distributor for the 21st century looking to help independent labels and bands make their music available for sale through the various and ever-expanding field of digital music stores. read more
An “FMC Classic” article from June 2003 that summarizes the benefits and challenges of the iTunes Music Store when it was first launched and made available for independent labels and artists. read more
Quantum Career Development in an Transforming Industry
Saturday, March 1, 2003
Peter Spellman offer his thoughts on music career development amid new industry trends and look at their career implications and applications. He hopes both musicians and industry careerists will gather some guidance for setting their sails amidst the mercurial waves of a transforming entertainment business. read more
How Digital Services Fail Classical & Jazz Musicians, Composers, and Fans
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
This is an excerpt of material first presented by Jean Cook at CASH Music Summit in Portland,OR in August 2013.
There is a special kind of data that enables the discovery and consumption of music. It’s called metadata. This article describes two specific ways that services like Spotify, iTunes, Rhapsody, Google Music, and Pandora dramatically underserve the market for classical and jazz music because of the way they treat the metadata for these genres. But first, a little about what metadata is. read more
The last few years have been a roller coaster ride for the music industry.
As stories have moved from Arts & Entertainment to the Business sections
of major media outlets, the public has become aware of the new realities
facing the industry. Whether its the challenge of the internet,
or increasing globalization, everything seems to be up for grabs. Performing
Rights Organizations (PROs) have been at the center of a lot of these
controversies. Although most musicians and songwriters are familiar with
ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC, what do these organizations do and how are they
positioning themselves and their clients for the future? read more
We’ve all heard the stories criticizing major record label contracts. Anecdotally we understand that many of the deals signed by artists are bad, but what does “bad” mean and just how bad are these deals? More importantly, how exactly are they bad? In this Major Label Contract Critique, FMC asked over a dozen major label and artist attorneys to identify which major label contract clauses and standard industry deductions are considered to be the most onerous. The document quotes ACTUAL contract language from ACTUAL record label contracts, with care taken to preserve the doublespeak that makes the documents so confusing. Finally, we translated these onerous and confusing contract clauses into PLAINENGLISH and paired them with easy-to-understand critiques in the hopes that even those who are completely unfamiliar with the music business can understand the implications that result from signing a standard major label deal. This is a first step in criticizing traditional record contract language. read more
What Will Happen to Independent Culture when the Web Goes Big Business?
Andrew Spencer Goldman
Thursday, August 30, 2001
For a brief, shining moment it looked as though the Internet might emerge
as our storybook hero, ending the reign of the old media conglomerates.
For too long our radios bound us to music as shiny and sterile as a corporate
board room, our cinema to films as empty of soul as they were full of
silicon and cliche, and our newspapers and televisions to the news that
Wall Street wanted us to see. Through a corporate filter, we lacked the perspective necessary to identify (at any mass level) the role that a highly concentrated media plays in sedating a vibrant democracy. read more
When my band signed a recording contract with a major label in 1989, we weren’t particularly naive. We were graduates of Ivy League schools, we’d been writing, recording and touring together for over five years, and we’d already released two albums; one by ourselves, and one on an independent label. We thought we had a pretty good handle on the deal we were making.
When my band signed a recording contract with a major label in 1989, we weren’t particularly naive. We were graduates of Ivy League schools, we’d been writing, recording and touring together for over five years, and we’d already released two albums; one by ourselves, and one on an independent label. We thought we had a pretty good handle on the deal we were making. read more