So whats stopping us buying albums? Do you buy many albums or downloads? How many Facebook friends do you have and if your are a recording artist how many of your friends support you?  Following the recent Fund It campaigns by Irish groups Moxie and Leafzang I start to wonder. 

There are five members in the group Moxie.  They have 2,500 Facebook likes.  Each member is averaging about 1,500 Facebook friends so you could say, excluding joint friends they may have close to 5,000 friends in total. Of this a total of 153 supported their campaign.  This campaign succeeded.  Leafzang are a six member group, 400 liked their Facebook Page and they too could have 5,000 or more friends. A total of 44 people came out to support their campaign and as a result they failed to get funded.

This raises serious issues for artists. Not everyone can or should make it in this business.  As a community worldwide Irish musicians are a strong bunch.  Therefore you would think that more support would be forthcoming when Fund It opportunities arise.  If every one of Moxie and Leafzang's 10,000 joint friends supported one artist a year with a single €10 donation then 20 albums alone could be produced.  If we can afford our fancy iPhones and think nothing of throwing €10 over the bar for two pints why are we slow in purchasing albums or supporting these campaigns? 

Do we simply take the free offerings, the sound clips, the videos and satisfy ourselves with that?  How many albums did you buy in 2013? What's your take on it?

Views: 870

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I'll be honest, I bought zero. Now before I get lynched here, there's far and far too much MP3s available for free (legit) that I have yet to listen to. Youtube boasts with inspiring artists that I have yet to give a listen to, not too long ago someone posted a huge collection of trad tunes that were very old and now longer published, soundcloud has a wealth of music to listen to. It's a bit like oversaturation, what's the added value of a CD at this point?

I'll happily go to their concerts but realistically if I listen to all the recordings I summed up just once I probably have enough for the next year. If I then happen to use the music as inspiration or a learning tutor than I'll be set for the rest of my lifetime pretty much. 

Let me raise one other issue that I have. I don't believe that studio recordings are the best way to listen to Irish music. In fact, if I have a random playlist on youtube I immediately hear the studio recordings and more often then not I find them boring and too refined. It's my own taste but the music just seems to be missing that raw bit that makes Irish music so special.. but that might be me. 

Thanks for the reminder Tony.  It is very easy to get caught up in our own projects and not support others.  It is also easy to get overwhelmed with all the things we can support on the internet these days.  If we find ourselves loving someone's work it is really the ethical thing to do to put our money where our mouth is and at least purchase their latest work...

When working on my last album I asked myself this question. MP3 downloads, free streams etc are what most people go for. As a professional in this industry, it is something I have accepted.

So from the streaming point of view I do not allow my albums be played on sites like Spotify which are exploitative of artists, except for my first one, which I use as an introduction. Once musicians are aware they have a choice in this, I feel it is up to each individual to make this choice, but it would be nice if more of those streaming through such sites are doing so in order to check out musicians they want to go and see etc :)

In order to attract people to buying my album, apart from the obvious stuff like making sure it was up to scratch (!), and accepting, as everyone should, that music is subjective, and it wouldn't be to everyone's taste, I was also very conscious of what the buyer of a physical copy was getting over a download purchaser. I felt I had to price accordingly and supply additional information on the physical copy. The result was a 24 page booklet with lots of information on the tunes etc. Many people who have bought the cd have expressed their delight in this, and I know I like the same in other peoples' albums. But as a musician who supports other musicians as much as I can afford to, I have also seen this from the opposite point of view. If I buy a physical CD and there are no notes whatsoever, I frankly get annoyed. There is a difference in price between album downloads and physical sales, and if I've paid more for the latter I expect a little more as a result. I also find this a little insulting when it's an album from some of the A listers who can definitely afford to take a little care with this, and who tend to charge more than most.

A bit of a pet peeve to be honest but there it is. 

So there's my 2p's worth. :)

Excuse me Kara, dreadfully foolish huh? Well I am in the lion's den so I guess I should have expected as much. 

Are you telling me that I have an obligation to buy music that I like and if not I'm "dreadfully foolish"? Seriously? 99% of the music I hear I like, I would need to take loans to buy it all. Not to mention that it would be like giving money to charity because I very likely wouldn't even listen to it! If an artist doesn't want their music to be enjoyed for free than it shouldn't offer it for free. If your entire business model for making money from music resolves around people buying things they already got from you for free than that seems like terrible business to me. I respectfully disagree with you Kara. I am not going to pay for something that I don't want to have, as I stated, I do not enjoy studio recordings. I will gladly go to a concert and pay good money for it, but that's because that gives me a unique experience that I want to have. 

I'm a very serious enthousiast musician myself, giving lessons (for free), practicing 3 hours a day, uploading music (free), giving performances in pubs (free). I don't expect any money for things that I'm giving out for free. Because I enjoy sharing the joy that music gives and not for any other reason. There's tons and tons of people on youtube and soundcloud that are doing the same (most never even produced an album - not that I wanted their album but that aside). I don't see what's wrong with that.  

So I'll turn this around. I don't claim to have all the wisdom in the world and apparently you know something that I don't: why should I buy a cd that I don't want to have and very likely won't listen to? 

You should not buy a CD you don't want and you should not buy a CD you won't listen to.  It is good that you do many things with music for free but good music takes time, and time is not free.  This is in regards to live recordings as well as studio recordings.  

My apologies for my spelling errors in all above comments.



Niamh Ní Charra said:

When working on my last album I asked myself this question. MP3 downloads, free streams etc are what most people go for. As a professional in this industry, it is something I have accepted.

So from the streaming point of view I do not allow my albums be played on sites like Spotify which are exploitative of artists, except for my first one, which I use as an introduction. Once musicians are aware they have a choice in this, I feel it is up to each individual to make this choice, but it would be nice if more of those streaming through such sites are doing so in order to check out musicians they want to go and see etc :)

In order to attract people to buying my album, apart from the obvious stuff like making sure it was up to scratch (!), and accepting, as everyone should, that music is subjective, and it wouldn't be to everyone's taste, I was also very conscious of what the buyer of a physical copy was getting over a download purchaser. I felt I had to price accordingly and supply additional information on the physical copy. The result was a 24 page booklet with lots of information on the tunes etc. Many people who have bought the cd have expressed their delight in this, and I know I like the same in other peoples' albums. But as a musician who supports other musicians as much as I can afford to, I have also seen this from the opposite point of view. If I buy a physical CD and there are no notes whatsoever, I frankly get annoyed. There is a difference in price between album downloads and physical sales, and if I've paid more for the latter I expect a little more as a result. I also find this a little insulting when it's an album from some of the A listers who can definitely afford to take a little care with this, and who tend to charge more than most.

A bit of a pet peeve to be honest but there it is. 

So there's my 2p's worth. :)

And i would have been delighted to pay extra to get the booklet in digital form along with the tunes.. :)

My reason for not wanting to buy CD's is a logistic one, i have more than enough sh..tuff floating around the house already, and much prefer to have all my music on the NAS below the TV where 3TB worth of music takes up as much space as perhaps 20 CD-cases.

EDIT: I bought perhaps 5 or 6 CD's last year, all of them at gigs featuring the respective artist/s.

among them Realta, Gerry O'Connor, Cathal McConnell and Josephine Marsh.

My apologies to Boyen I should have kept my opinion in its harsh words and bad spelling to myself.

Don't worry about it, you should be able to voice your opinion. If you feel like I would be a better person if I bought cd's then that's how it is.

The thing remains for me that if I would buy a cd it would be like giving to charity, there's nothing in me that has a desire for having a cd, similar to Lars' comment above, they're bulky take up space. They're just not handy to have. If I would have the cd, I would probably still listen to the music on spotify/youtube quite simply because I can access the music faster that way. I think that musicians should look at other ways to make their money than cd's, I don't know how, but just a cd doesn't cut it for me. A nice booklet alongside is a good step, butI would probably rather buy a good book about Irish tunes.  Something that makes the experience feel special and different from what is already freely available would move the status quo from giving money to charity to actually wanting to spend money because the item is desirable. 

A lot of performers offer the mp3s on their site so one can avoid the clutter option. I find that having the recordings in my device is great especially if I want to move them to an app that I can slow the music down to catch the nuances of the playing or for dancing at the speed I would like. Modern technology is pretty awesome. I think the artist makes more money if you buy the product from their site rather than from iTunes etc. I am not sure though. I think some performance venues might take a share when a cd is sold at a performance too. I am curious about this, does anyone have any info on this type of thing?

There has been a continuous evolution in the way music is "distributed," and it's a long way from setting up on a street corner, playing, and hoping folk will think highly of it enough to throw a few coins your direction. The internet media makes it really easy to get tunes and songs, and that's a mixed blessing. I frequently download any CD I get into my data base for easy(er) access to them later.

So. I guess I respect the fact that there is nothing like hearing someone play it live, it's a fact of our modern technology that folk are going to be less likely to 'buy' CD Albums when downloads are quicker and more manageable.

For my part, ... and I don't want to be stepping in anyone's rice bowl, ... a lot of folk on my newsletter list like how I take traditional (or made public/domain) tunes and songs and arrange them for the "out of the box," Richter-scaled, diatonic harmonicas. While I tried to suggest that it'd be nice to pay me for my efforts to do that, I quickly found out that's not a good way to keep friends ... and listeners ... especially for us "red-haired, harmonica-playin' , stepchildren."

So ... I continue to do it ... for the fun of it, and from time to time, I get invited to play with a group ... where I get a free beer, ... and maybe a few coins tossed in my direction.

It's all fun.

Hey all

I think what Niamh said applies to 100% to us as well. Well put. We offer both mp3 downloads and physical sales on our site, and sails are 50:50. The streaming is not really supporting any small band/musician, to put this in scale, here is a great link:
http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/2010/how-much-do-music-artist...
If this would be the only option, I don't think we would be making enough money to make another CD, or even make a living.

Cheers

Rolf (Cara)

Niamh Ní Charra said:

When working on my last album I asked myself this question. MP3 downloads, free streams etc are what most people go for. As a professional in this industry, it is something I have accepted.

So from the streaming point of view I do not allow my albums be played on sites like Spotify which are exploitative of artists, except for my first one, which I use as an introduction. Once musicians are aware they have a choice in this, I feel it is up to each individual to make this choice, but it would be nice if more of those streaming through such sites are doing so in order to check out musicians they want to go and see etc :)

In order to attract people to buying my album, apart from the obvious stuff like making sure it was up to scratch (!), and accepting, as everyone should, that music is subjective, and it wouldn't be to everyone's taste, I was also very conscious of what the buyer of a physical copy was getting over a download purchaser. I felt I had to price accordingly and supply additional information on the physical copy. The result was a 24 page booklet with lots of information on the tunes etc. Many people who have bought the cd have expressed their delight in this, and I know I like the same in other peoples' albums. But as a musician who supports other musicians as much as I can afford to, I have also seen this from the opposite point of view. If I buy a physical CD and there are no notes whatsoever, I frankly get annoyed. There is a difference in price between album downloads and physical sales, and if I've paid more for the latter I expect a little more as a result. I also find this a little insulting when it's an album from some of the A listers who can definitely afford to take a little care with this, and who tend to charge more than most.

A bit of a pet peeve to be honest but there it is. 

So there's my 2p's worth. :)

Indeed, you raise some very good points Tony! I must agree with an earlier response  that the market is "over-saturated" and that music is easily attainable via the digital devices we have at our disposal. Add into the mix, music streaming via Rhapsody, Pandora, etc., all of which reduces the "demand" for CDs in the "Supply and Demand" chain, it's no wonder we are facing increased challenges in this regard. Another determinant to consider is the age group demographic. The age population who purchases the greatest number of CDs are the under 20 group. A fairly recent development I have also encountered is that many artists are now appealing to their followers for donations to fund a recording project. I must confess that I have mixed feelings about this. It used to be that artists "beat the pavement" via doing performances, gigs, and scraped together what they could to get that first recording out there or better yet land a contract. Of course with the advent of social media, it becomes increasingly convenient to appeal for donations from the fans initially, and then turn around and charge them to purchase the CD afterwards. I personally have a day job, family responsibilities, and perform and make music simply because I love doing it. I have no aspirations to make a living through music at this stage in my life and therefore I know my viewpoint is somewhat skewed and biased. I have supported and continue to support other musicians economically even though they have more times than not, not returned the favor which is ok. My support is extended without expectation for reciprocation. I have over the years built my own studio, gone through a steep learning curve to learn recording with much trial and tribulation, and fund my own recording, materials,  and provide all instrumentation. In this way, I am able to satisfy my need to create while keeping costs at a minimum. I have found this reduces much anxiety in trying to "push" the sales in the long run. 

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Groups

Music

Loading…

© 2017   Created by Tony Lawless.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service