What Shea hopes for 2011’s music industry

30 Dec

2010 has been a terrible year, as seems to be the continuous case, for the music industry with piracy still ruling the waves and physical sales continuing to plummet. For me, the one bit of exciting news this year was the arrival of cloud-based music services from Google, Spotify and Sony – that didn’t happen.  Well Sony’s Qriocity (shudder) is off to a stuttering start but I doubt it will get anywhere.  So alas, we pray to what 2011 brings!

Google Music et al.

The Majors are reluctant to accept cloud-based services in to the States and to be fair, rightly so. The issue lies in the value of the physical album. Any music fan with a sharpish brain would have noticed the cost of an album dropping heavily over the last few years. The last thing the industry needs is for Google to announce to the world that you no longer need to buy an album altogether, but stream it for free from the most trusted site on the web.

However, if history taught us one thing it is to learn from our mistakes. If it is going to happen, it will happen. Spotify has seen the same fate with a failed plan to launch its music service state side before Christmas. The Majors don’t like change, but it is better to work with these technologies now and adapt the traditional business revenue channels to 10’s …hell if Bon Jovi can gross $108.2m solely through touring it can’t be all that bad?

An Education

[vimeo 10379531]

Watch that video! What I think the IFPI and RIAA lack in their efforts to tackle piracy is focusing on educating the legal alternatives. Instead of using money on law suits prosecuting the very fans of the industry, the time and money should be put towards educating the legitimate ways we all can listen to music. It was refreshing to see RIAA take a new approach with the Music Matters series this year and I hope a heavily advertised campaign with similar messages will reach out to the masses in 2011.

Music Licensing

I have been fortunate to realize the true potential of licensing/placing music in adverts, film and TV. Unless you’re Nike with an unlimited budget to create an amazing film most advertisers want great music without the cost, thus they turn to underground artists which results in:

a) a pay cheque

b) exposure

Companies like TheTapMusic.com and JinglePunks.com have the right idea. Licensing is a powerful tool and I am sure strong foundations will be put in place to help the seemingly daunting task of getting to music supervisors to hear your music a thing of the past.


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