In this week’s 7 1/2 minute episode, I am podcasting from lovely London, and the subject is streaming music and the future of indie music revenue streams. (The picture is of some Hare Krishnas we encountered on our walk back to the place we are staying at.)
An article this week in Digital Music News entitled Why Apple’s Acquisition of Beats Is Bad for Indie Labels, Artists, and the Industry… argues that the acquisition of Beats Music by Apple is a bad thing for indie artists and labels. The basic argument is that as download revenue declines, streaming revenue will not increase enough to compensate (essentially due to the unbundling of the single from albums), and that labels will continue to keep a large amount of the revenue from streaming from artists anyway, and so this is not a good model for indie musicians.
I disagree. I think the future viable revenue model for an indie musician will look more like that of indie artist Zoe Keating, who revealed where her revenue comes from earlier this year. Zoe makes much more money from selling her music directly from her website ($68k) than from streaming her music ($6k) – but she is OK with that.
In a March article on Hypebot, she is quoted putting her revenue streams into perspective, saying, “…Aren’t I just an example of “The Long Tail” at work?… For a single artist like me commercial streaming will never be more than promo. I accept that. But I will keep talking about it until streaming companies do more to make that promo more useful (i.e data).”
I believe that the Zoe Keating model is the model of the future for indie artists – one where record labels don’t stand between the services that deliver the music to fans and the artist – and more importantly, where they don’t stand between the payments made by those fans and the artist who created the music.
Please leave your comments below, I’d love to hear your thoughts!
I just did my second band photo shoot for our Solveig & Stevie updated EPK, for the cover of our new EP/CD (whatever it is going to be), and for our redesigned website and social media banners.
This was not my first experience with band photo shoots. I’ve done band promo shoots, several music videos, and sat for professional family photo portraits and for business head shots numerous times before as well. You would think I could get this right – but no.
Band photos are so important, and they can be so complicated. Your photos should communicate your band’s brand accurately to your potential fans. Plus, all of us humans want to look cool and sexy and, well… good, in our pictures – preferably without either plastic surgery or too much Photoshopping.
I think we can all agree that we artists are perhaps a little more touchy when comes to visual presentation than the rest of the population. Whether we are are punk, folk, metal, grunge or goth, it’s often a very carefully calculated personal image.