Why Mainstream Can Kill
Last week Starbucks announced that it was leaving the music business. Sales have been shockingly low: one journalist calculated that they add up to about two CDs per store, per day. Why did this fail so spectacularly? Paul Resnikoff argues that the Paul McCartney-and-Alicia Keyes combination was too mainstream to be interesting to consumers. Starbucks was more effective when they highlighted talented but unknown artists. He compares that model to music in the video game industry, which prides itself on being cutting edge. Digital Music News, April 24thread more
Here’s an interesting item we got from our friends at Columbia University’s Research Center for Arts and Culture. They’ve put together a survey aimed at composers of all styles and backgrounds, in order to get a sense of the needs of this particular musical community.
Here’s the official spiel:
New Music Needs Your Voice
The American Music Center (AMC) and American Composers Forum (ACF) have teamed up with Columbia University’s Research Center for Arts and Culture to conduct the first major study of living composers. The study aims to gather important data to guide our efforts in better serving and advocating for composers of all styles and backgrounds. read more
“We forget that copyright is a reflection of an underlying principle — that we the public enjoy and want to stimulate creativity. And we have to find a way of rewarding that creative work, or else [the artist] can’t afford to be creative and develop in their skills and so on.” — Peter Jenner read more
Attention Colorado readers (we know you’re out there)!
As you may know, FMC makes all of its events free for musicians. We also do our best to offer free musician access to the events we participate in. It’s all because we believe artist voices need to be heard in discussions about the future of music. Case in point: the upcoming National Performing Arts Convention, which takes place in Denver on June 10-14. If you’re a musician and would like to attend, you could be in luck, as FMC snagged a handful of free registrations for artists. read more
Tim Quirk [r] at FMC’s 2007 Policy Summit. Photo by Caroline Deutermann
“The market has spoken: people have said they want their music digitally. It‘s a completely mainstream way of accessing music these days — it’s not just hacker college kids.” — Tim Quirk, on modern music distribution.
Have you ever checked out the folks that make up FMC‘s advisory board? There are some very diverse and accomplished people in tune with our work, and we’re always thrilled to have them offer their perspectives. In fact, we‘ve long wanted to share their views and opinions with you, as our advisory board represents a ton of music-related knowledge and experience. read more
A little while ago, we posted a recap of FMC’s adventures at this year’s South By Southwest. You may recall us mentioning a panel called “Mobility, Ubiquity and Monetizing Music,” which was moderated by FMC Board member Bryan Calhoun and featured advisory board members Jim Griffin, Peter Jenner and Sandy Pearlman, as well as entertainment attorney Dina LaPolt and Eric Garland, founder of BigChampagne. read more
Our friends at Common Cause and Save the Internet wanted us to help spread the word about the upcoming FCC hearing on Net Neutrality at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA. So this post is mostly for our West Coast readers, but if you feel like traveling, it’s certainly a good cause:
The FCC is coming to Stanford Univeristy — make your voice heard!
Now is the time to show your support for an open Internet, free from discrimination by big telecom corporations. read more
But recent developments at the majors indicate a willingness to explore new avenues in music access and distribution. It remains to be seen which, if any, of these “experimental” models will gain traction, or if they will be fair to all artists. read more