A lot of time and energy has gone into opening up a can of whup ass on the major labels and their ways. Not nearly so much energy has been devoted to the geeks and their emerging influence in the music business.
Everybody loves the geeks, they are the business titans of our time, but it is hardly a slam dunk to say they are well equipped to save the music business.
Check out the excerpt below and allow me to address two points from the excerpt.
1. The paying of producers $100,000 per song. I think Katy Perry is a hard working person, ambitious, and very cute and willing to shake the junk in her trunk.
Do the geeks really think she is overflowing with musical talent and does not require the talents and reputations of skilled proven producers to maker her records work in the marketplace?
The $100,000 number would appear high, but what I would guess is going on is that Ms. Perry and her management are not looking to pay points for producers’ work, points being a percentage of sales.
This is a mistake by geeks to think that $100k for a song is an unnecessary expense, it’s an essential part of the Katy Perry Formula.
2. The issue of the payola/”special promotions”. I promise to be polite on this issue, but the geeks are really showing their naivete here.
Where would Katy Perry be without the saturation marketing? Working at the Gap, fellas. The world was not waiting for and hoping for the genius of Katy Perry, she was foisted upon a somewhat malleable American public, and that shit is expensive.
I’m all for discussion of the music business, but it has to be a little more connected to reality than this article and the geeks need to have a deeper understanding of the music business than just a social music experience and an algorithmic music filter.
A few weeks back, the folks at Planet Money tried to break down the economics of Katy Perry’s massively successful album with its five hit singles. Specifically, they wanted to figure out how much money her label made from such a big success. What comes out is a step-by-step description of the massive inefficiencies of the major label recording system. There are things like paying producers $100,000 per song they produce on the album. Then there’s all the payola… er “special promotions” to get the songs played on radio so much.