Tuesday, January 12, 2010

article on music and money for lookatme.ru

I have started writing a column of sorts for Russian website lookatme.ru.  More and more I have felt a growing concern and frustration from seeing so many friends struggling as they try to survive and make money while trying to be artists - particularly in the music industry - and especially as the industry is changing so much.  So I tried to summarize my thoughts:

12 Jan. 2009 

Many of my friends are musicians, artists or fashion designers.  But most of them don’t make much money.   In this article I’m going to discuss various reasons why I think this is the case and what it may take to make money.  I’m not proposing to have done any real research on the topic and I may be wrong – I’m just giving an overview of the way I see it.

The way to  make money in the arts (music, fashion, art, etc.) is to provide something that people really want or need that they can only get from you or which they can't get cheaper or easier elsewhere.  A really good live show is an example.  People may be able to easily find someone's music on the Internet for free. But they can only experience a live show by going to the show.  A great art piece is the same way.  Making it may take the same time as a great album, but the experience can't be put onto a little disc and shared with everyone for free. . . . continue reading


icastico said...

I like the article.
I think you are spot on noting the idea that musicians interested in making a living off of their art need to think of how they can produce something unique and valuable as an artifact or experience.

I personally think that commercial licensing will become one of the major ways that musicians will create an income stream rather than through sales to listeners, it will be sales to other creators (whether they are creating a car company commercial or a movie).

“I really feel like my problem isn't piracy...It's obscurity.” - Cory Doctorow

Anonymous said...

Interesting read, especially as It looks like I'm about to embark on this career path myself. Ugh I can't believe I just said 'career path'.

Bernie Stocks said...

Some interesting thoughts here:


Lee Jasper Jones said...

Ghandi looks cool