I'm starting to see a trend here. People can't afford to play music for a living anymore. I wonder how that happened... Needless to say, the entire death of the music industry is going to have a negative impact on the quality of the music that's being released. It's sad, really.
False. If by "the death of the music industry" you mean that the numbers of people who are paying for recorded music have fallen, then thus far I completely disagree that the quality of the music has also fallen. This year has been my favourite year for music since 2004- and I'm not an impressionable 16 year old any more.
I have personally, and when I say 'personally', I mean personally, witnessed several artists cease to regularly make music because they are no longer financially capable of doing so. Great, talented artists that can't record or tour because they're broke. The little guy is hurting in this music industry climate, no matter what you're told by AP and Spin magazine. There is a lot of great music not being made right now as a direct result of what is going on.
the music industry will thin out, but not in a good way, only the pop icons will be left standing because for whatever reason, the general public listens to them, rap artists, nickelback and alike, and pop stars will continue to make money hand over fist, while the little guys continue to struggle, but you can only struggle for so long, do you want to continue to struggle well into your 30's and 40's? It's difficult to have a family while on the road in the first place, and add in the fact that you barely make enough money for yourself to survive, much less a wife and a child, it's nearly impossible, it really is a sad state of affairs
If only the mass public would appreciate talent instead of the length of their bangs, put the music back into MTV, now thats a world that I want to live in
A lot of bands aren't going to exist in the near future because of how much harder it's becoming to make a living off of music (especially for certain types of music).
Just because it will be harder, doesn't mean that shitty bands won't exist. Superficiality and pre-packaged artists are still very appealing to a lot of mainstream markets. People tend to like what's familiar. If it's harder for a smaller (unsigned, independent) artist to make a living, that means a lot of very talented people who may be making some of the best music just can't afford to be letting people experience their work.
If it's going to cost an artist $4,000 to record an album, and $1,000 to do a basic pressing, they need $5,000. Most people don't have $5,000 to spare...especially all at the same time. If an artist can't make a profit from their music (or break even), then for most people that means they can't do it. Unless they feel that their music is worth thousands of their own dollars, then they won't/can't make it.
So many artists on AbsolutePunk that people read about everyday have day jobs, or part-time jobs, or do other work when they're not on tour or when raising money for recording, etc. We're lucky enough that they have the drive and opportunity to make the money outside of music to do that. But not all of those bands are good. Sometimes they are, but just because they can earn money doesn't make them good.
Sometimes bands can get involved with indie labels or partners, and that can help a lot too. That's what my band is in the process of going through now. We're trying to raise money to go into the studio to record our first full length, but the cost is way too high for us to cover ourselves. We've been lucky enough to get a deal to release that album through an awesome indie label in Japan, so we can get a small advance to put towards recording (and we don't have to worry about pressing costs for over there). But that doesn't cover nearly everything, even just for the recording. We're trying to expand and find more labels to work with to help us pay for some of the most basic things we need, but (as many users of this site know) finding a label that you get along with (and actually wants to work with YOU) is incredibly difficult.
Going through things for my band, I know that it's really hard to get enough money for what you need. And it kind of sucks for us, because we play a lot of pretty straightforward indie/pop music (although some of it it very different form that). On the outside that seems like that'd be a great thing, make the music more accessible to most people. But at this level, it hurts us so much. We're not a pop-punk band, an emo band, a metal band, a punk band, a screamo band, etc. We're not "indie" enough to be apart of any sort of indie scene. We're kind of stuck in the middle of nowhere unless someone from another level decides to take a chance on us on a larger scale to bring us to a more mainstream audience.
To sum it up, it sucks to a band that doesn't have breakdowns, power chords, or screams. Also to not have money for anyone in any band. Especially if you're trying to make a name for yourself. You can have a lot of drive and no money, and people can still never notice you.
I don't think things are particularly harder for the better bands than the shitty ones. But, look at it like a math equation. Most people would agree that there is more shitty music (or music they do not, in their opinion, enjoy) than good music.
So if there are 1,000 up-and-coming bands and 1,000 established, always-gonna-be-there type bands, let's say that 2/3 of the 'up and comings' are shitty, that's 666.6(insert vinculum here), and 1/3 of the up and comins are good, 333.3.
If the shitty music economy forces 2/3 of the 'up and coming' (or simply small and unknown) bands to shut down, that means there are 666.6 total up and coming bands left, 444.4 of which are shitty, and 222.2 of which are good. (We'll assume that the established bands retain their ability to be fiscally viable).
In the pre-apocalypse music industry, the hypothetical number of good up and coming bands in the total pool of bands (established and not) is 16.7% whilst the number of shitty up and coming bands in the aforementioned 'band pool' is 33.3%. In the post-apocalyptic music climate, the number of good new bands is only 13.3% whilst the number of shitty new bands is 26.7%.
All of a sudden, it's harder to wade through all the bull shit and find new, good music, or just new, small music. That's how I see the problem. Shitty bands and good bands are both affected, but the smaller number of good bands because ever-smaller while the larger number of shitty bands shrinks, but still retains a larger ratio in relation to the good bands.
I just want to say I think everything you do is awesome. You're one of my favorite people in the "scene" right now, and I don't even listen to your music. I've tried, I just can't get into it. Maybe with the new name/sound I'll give it another show. But I see your posts on here and you seem like a well rounded, passionate dude who's doing things for the right reasons. I saw you live with Lydia in May, and from what I remember it was a pretty good show. Just wanted to say keep up what you do, because it's appreciated.
Oh, I have no doubt that this is the case, and yes, it is very sad. However, in my day-to-day music life, I've not noticed a dip in quality of the music being put out, as evidenced by this being my favourite musical year for several years. I appreciate that we're coming at this from 2 very different angles though- me just as a music listener, and you as a musician. If it's any consolation, there are still people out there like myself who recognise that the 'little guy' needs supporting, and do so whenever we can. Money's not just tight for musicians right now, it is tight for consumers too.
One might argue that a band like this wouldn't be viable even when people actually sold records.
Just because you CAN make music it doesn't mean that you can do it fulltime at the drop of a hat just because you feel like it and I am saying this as a full-time musician (productive, not gun for hire) myself.
Also, "the entire death of the music industry" is just over-exaggerating a BIT. If it was truly dead you wouldn't have tours or even gigs if they weren't veterans hall/bar deals and everything would be at 100% cost for the musician.
Some artists who used to play to 1000-1500 every night have been playing to 400-800 every night recently and one might argue that the latter should've always been the case and they should be incredibly, incredibly thankful that they at one point could draw that many kids.
That's an interesting way to look at it, but I, personally, don't believe someone needs to be able to draw 100 kids in any given city to have a 'career'. My career, for instance, has been based around online sales to people all over the world, with no real concentration in any set geographic location. So, it just depends on what you consider the actual 'goal' of 'making it' in the industry. Some people would say record sales, some people would say drawing people to shows, some people would say actual number of listeners reached, etc.
The only thing I truly know is that there are people in the world that are not releasing music (due to lack of income) that should be (due to their immense talent). That's hard to see. I hope no one thought I was being snarky or bashing Arms and Sleepers. I did/am doing a similar thing where people can donate money toward my record ($10) and they can get their name as an Executive Producer in the album credits. So, I very much know where they're coming from with this idea.
What a stupid comment. Those are the only ones that will do it because they enjoy it and for the sake of doing it? Those are the only bands that will make music because it's what they love, regardless if there's tons of money in it or not? I don't think so. They aren't moneymakers, either. They're a little bit successful. But they aren't making that much really.
It was a joke.
And you're wrong, Brokencyde is probably doing around 20k in merch sales per night. Yes. I said $20,000 a night. That's a Honda Civic. Every night.
There's no possible way that's correct. That's well over 2,000 shirts a night, they aren't brining in enough people per show to possibly make that.
Actually, Brokencyde are probably selling their shirts for $20, and I doubt they're printing on AA or something high quality. So let's say they sell a Gildan's Beefy Tee (cheap, shitty) for $20 and print them for $3, that's a $17 profit. Then they're probably selling hoodies for around $40 or $50, since they're worthless assholes. I also imagine they're selling other worthless little things like bracelets or shutter shades for an insane profit.
Anyway, I have witnessed a band do around $5,000 in a pretty small venue, much smaller than what Brokencyde are playing. Never under estimate some kids with credit cards and/or their parents money.
Shirts aren't the only "merch" a band can sell, and it is most definitely possible, seeing as how Insane Clown Posse (Bad comparison, I know) makes more than 20k a night, sure, they have been around for longer, but one could give a well based argument saying that the Brokencyde's and Millionaire's are the ICP of our age.
ICP do well over a million dollars a year in merchandise sales, and I'm pretty sure that doesn't include their touring sales.
A friend of a friend of mine started a blog about doing merch for a band that was touring with ICP. Apparently ICP had around 100 merch designs, all of which went up to 5 XL or 7 XL