Battling for free music
A corrupt and greedy industry
Record companies have a reputation of being corrupt and greedy, and are known to use their tricky contracts to coax an artist into giving away all their money unknowingly. "Many musicians think the current publishing
process (recording industry) doesn't necessarily yield equity," says Professor Jim McElwaine, head of the Studio Composition department at SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Music. The RIAA admits that artists love bashing their record labels. When an artist signs to a record label they receive an
advance to make the album, but there is a catch. They must pay back the record company all the money they borrowed. They can do that in tours, and appearances, but they rely heavily on record sales. An artist doesn't get paid until all the money is reimbursed to the record company. Therefore,
some young artists favor Napster because it is going against the record industry, in which they believe to be corrupt and merciless. Also, as McElwaine points out, "Almost all musicians favor a more accurate technology."
Teens nowadays favor the ease and ability to obtain free music on the web. Buying the whole album that costs approximately 17 dollars a CD adds up to a lot of money for poor college students to spend. Therefore,
students end up getting the music for free off Napster. "The record companies are ripping us off, and Napster is ripping the artist off," says Jen Damaskinos, an undecided major. The RIAA, however, claims that with the rising fees in marketing and promoting CDs consumers are lucky that CD prices haven't drastically risen in the last couple of years. The amount it costs to make and promote a CD has increased dramatically, because of the
vast number of people it takes to create and promote an artist and a CD. The price of the CD has to pay for the songwriters, artists, background musicians, studio engineers, talent scouts, marketers and retailers, and
A website called The Velvet Rope goes beyond the glam of the artists and gets down and dirty inside the business of music. It guides musicians on how to get a record deal, marketing and promoting, and includes the insides on music management. This site also allows artists to schedule a gig with the promoters of the Velvet Rope. The business of music is vast, and this website offers a lot of opportunities to musicians.