(Artwork care of Karen Ramsay (www.karenramsay.com), profile photo care of brianlackeyphotography.com)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Music news - Don't take this...


Image credit: Open Clip Art Library, care of Wikipedia

Actually, I did take it a little personally. Producer Richard X (M.I.A., Kelis, Sugababes) talked to BBC Newsbeat about music piracy and album leaks. He blamed the problem on rabid fans phishing for pre-release copies of music rather than a sinister pirate cabal.

He shared anecdotes about insidious fans posing as insiders and using social engineering to get early access to albums. But it's interesting to contrast this with another point in the article that mentions the long lead time the labels take to release music.

For my part, I occasionally sense some suspicion when I contact an artist to get a review copy of an upcoming album. I have the advantage of an active review blog to vouch for my identity. But the industry's piracy problem probably affects my odds of success.

The irony, though, is that for all of the music label fear-mongering about album leaks, there are plenty of artists like Jill Sobule, Jonathan Coulton, and Matt Stevens who have been building successful, sustained careers around sharing their music. They may not be operating at the crazy money level that the major labels play at, but they are proof that an artist can connect with fans, satisfy their cravings for fresh music, and still make a living.

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