Posted on October 13, 2011 by


We live in a disinformation economy. Entrenched powers employ flacks who utilize their relationships to tell untrue stories to convince you to believe them.

The number one major label saw?



Have you heard of the Weeknd?

Used to be these acts were anointed, your goal was to convince a gatekeeper to support you, to let you in. That’s what the music business was based on, getting in. Getting a major label deal, getting represented by Frank Barsalona. And once you were in, life was beautiful. Even if you didn’t immediately make it. It was a fraternity. You had many chances to fail. That’s how you got artist development. Whereas now, it’s every man for himself. It’s what have you done for me lately. You’ve got to be incredible immediately and continue to be so.

And the powers-that-be don’t like this.

And the wannabes don’t either.

Ironically, most wannabes want it the way it used to be. They want to get in the club and relax. The fact that there’s barely a club and what’s left of it doesn’t pay doesn’t bother them. Goddamn it, they want it the way it used to be!

As do the labels.

Because if you control the pie, you get to divvy it up amongst yourselves.

The major labels controlled distribution. And that meant they got paid. You could go indie, you’d just starve.

But now you can do it for yourself. This is the entrenched player’s worst nightmare. This is why they’re kicking and screaming. They care less about you stealing their wares than the demise of their old model. Otherwise they wouldn’t have let you steal for so long. Because if distribution becomes democratized, they’re screwed. This decade-long fight over P2P wasn’t about the money, it was about the business model! The majors make stars and get paid. You’ve got to go through them.

Only you no longer need to.

So Jake calls me up and asks if I’m following this act, the Weeknd.

Now let me be clear. Insiders have seen it all, you know when they’re going on hype and they’re rarely excited.

But Jake had never seen anything like this. I could hear it in his voice.

An unsigned act gives away it’s music and you can’t get in the gig!

Do some research, download the album. You’re now in the club, the new word of mouth club.

The big story this week is Marc Geiger’s appearance on Ian Rogers’s Web TV show. But I thought maybe you hadn’t seen it.

You should.

“Billboard” did the best edit:

You can watch the entire show here:

But be sure to watch that edited clip. Ignore the intro, ignore the reference to me, but be sure to hear the power of Pitchfork.

It’s a trusted filter. An imperfect trusted filter. But it generated a million dollars of business for the Weeknd instantaneously, $25,000 a gig.

That’s real money. Much more than you’d ever get going through the record company.

And the act gave the music away for free.

But everybody agreed it was really good.

Ain’t that a head-scratcher.

But that’s the new world.

There will be a more perfect Pitchfork, a more trustworthy filter. Pitchfork is just a harbinger of what’s to come.

But the future is coming.

Throw out all your twentieth century thinking.

There’s more ways to make money in music than selling discs.

But the old players can’t see this.

So they’re going to be left behind.

Ian Rogers never worked at a major label.

The revolutionaries are outsiders. Who aren’t upsetting the apple cart so much as seizing new technologies and customizing them for the new music business. Which is being built now.

Don’t buy the corporate b.s.

There’s plenty of money in music. No one’s giving up because they can’t get paid.

The audience knows most music is crap.

But people have their ear to the ground for what’s great.

Are you great?

If so, the field is wide open.

You don’t need to spam anybody, you just need to be great.

Research the Weeknd story.

It’ll blow your mind and make you smile.

The Weeknd:


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