A couple months ago I told the guys I wasn’t going to tour anymore for a couple reasons. One, I’m turning 30 and have given all my time to bands and the road, and I want to be able to start a family and see my parents and grandparents more. Secondly, I graduated with an audio production degree,…
Nate Dorough is a promoter from Michigan that runs Fusion Shows, puts on Bled Fest, and does work with Phantom Creative Group as well. In his fourth blog for our ongoing Contributor series, Nate discusses how the music industry has radically changed in terms of how labels treat legendary bands and even younger bands that are selling music at a fast rate. It’s a great read and is certainly relevant, so read up and enjoy!
I’ve been having some interesting chats with folks from all sides of the music industry, and there’s a general consensus cycling through most of these conversations.
Simply put, it’s tough to be a good band these days.
Jimmy Eat World just got dropped from their label. JIMMY. EAT. WORLD. One of the best bands that has ever existed. Wasn’t making enough dough for their label, and poof, gone. The music director at a local radio station told me today that a newish active rock band (I forget the name) sold 150,000 copies of their first record, but had a few too many expenses, and were dropped as well. To think that bands selling that many records are A. not profitable and B. not even worth keeping on a label makes me wonder what the hell is going on in this business.
However, on the other side of it, there’s an incredibly healthy independent scene going on right now. Small labels and independent artists are able to build loyal fanbases better than ever before. They don’t particularly make money, but they get to the public eye, at least in the music scene, faster than ever. There’s so much great music these days.
Yesterday afternoon, I spent the day hanging out on a college campus at an event called “Mainstage”, a welcome-week event with vendors, student organizations, live music, and lots of free stuff. We get a table every year, and we pass out thousands of flyers and give away a whole bunch of tickets. In past years, bands like Eve 6 and Every Avenue have performed. This year, it was 3 local artists. I hadn’t heard of a single one of them.
Of the 5000 or so students in attendance, I only noticed maybe five or ten (at most) band-related T-shirts. The band T-shirts I did see were the following: