Industry Repsonses To Bob Lefsetz’ Comments About MP3s

Posted on April 5, 2012 by

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See the previous post to understand exactly what the industry is commenting about… but here it is:

What is it that makes these artists think that you (and most other execs in the music business) actually evaluate new music for the quality that it may or may not have?
Don’t they understand that the thing that matters to industry decision-makers is NUMBERS, then the music? That’s the true order of things today.
Ask Troy Carter, who got turned down by literally every single radio station in the country when shopping early Lady Gaga. He had to go get a substantial internet following for any "industry folks" to understand that she was a big deal.
Example #2: Maroon 5’s debut Songs About Jane, which had a very slow (1.5 years?) rise before they won New Artist of the Year – because industry folks often can’t hear a hit band when it comes across their desk. Even one as good as Maroon 5.
Their ears are numbed.
People will choose the hits. Not you. Not Morris or Iovine. If a new band turns millions of heads by farting on a drum head, industry folks will flock to them and find a slick way to talk about the cultural genius behind such a breakthrough sound. That’s it. That’s how it works now, with all of the noise and access that the internet provides.
So if you want to stop getting bad MP3s, you may want to state the ugliest truth of all: that numbers matter, and music is second. It’s a damn business. Take the romance out of it. The romance era ended right around 1997 when Napster came in.
Tell it like it is. Let would-be rockstars know that without a groundswell of support they cannot break through. The ones who make it on talent alone are so rare that they should simply sit in line for auditions for abominable shows like American Idol, the Voice, etc. Nationally televised karaoke contests. The rest need to go get a ton of fans. It’s indisputable evidence, and it’s the only thing that will resonate with numb ears.
Hank Leber

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