How The Music Industry Works

The music industry has a bad reputation for cheating artists out of their earnings. Here is how an artist gets into debt to a record-label company.

If a new artist is not successful, the advance they are paid is a debt held by the record-label which may never see it fully repaid, sourced from the label’s cash or the label’s own lenders. Today’s artist needs to have a ‘digital footprint’, meaning their digital presence ought to reflect their act.

What do labels do? An explanation from “Bill Gates” online school Lynda.com. Basically a record label functions like a movie-studio, pairing you up with the production teams they have on contract, printing your music and distributing it to the outlets that work with them.  When you sign to a label, you are now the star of a “movie that has a long list of production credits” – including directors, dancers, etc.

The unsigned route, where an artist’s strong fan base will spend money on their product.

 

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