In this music blog, we are going to talk about the state of the music industry and what bands have to do to make their money. We love our music throughout human life. It was pasted down from Generation to Generation. We went from Bach to Flo-rida. I realize how that sounds. Being a metal head, I enjoy all music.
Bands in the past would put out record and tour to support that record. They would get their income from record sales. As many of you know that is not the case. With the birth of the internet, we as listeners found ways to get music at a cheap price or free. Napster took a ton of heat back in the day. It was the Facebook for college student for music. One person would buy the music and then “share” it with other people for education purpose. Transferring files from computer to computer. How is this different with cassette taping when a radio station played the music. It is really is not. The question is downloading the digital files is the cause of the lack of CD sales. This pie graph shows us from 1980 to 2010 of the percentage of way people buy their music.
As you can see the growth of the CD in the late 1980s to 2003. In 2010, CD is about 50% of the sales of how music listeners get their music. People are still buying music so why do we always say the Music Industry is dying. Here is my thought. We look to Wallstreet and seeing the big Record Companies saying their bottom line is just bad. They have the big acts like the Rolling Stones, Bon Jovi, etc. There are ton of Independent Record Companies, Bands make their own record label, and or they are selling their music on their own website. This article has some great information (Why We Shouldn’t Worry About The Decline Of The Music Industry?) Here is some data from this article from Frobes. Music groups in 2003 put out 38,000 new albums but in 2008 music acts put out 75,000 new albums. With the state of economics, bands keep putting out music in 2010 at 75,000 new albums. Bands are still putting out more music in 2010 then 2003 when CDs were at its peak as far percentage of sales from the pie graph above. Here is the stat that proves from this same article (www.forbes.com).
From 1999 to 2009, concert ticket sales in the US tripled from $1.5 billion to $4.6 billion, vastly exceeding the growth of inflation and population growth.
I wonder how much of percentage is coming from the big acts with their high ticket prices. People want to be entertained and they want to forget about their bills or lack of jobs. I wonder how much effects physical or digital copy with the lack of money. The lack of funds is the money going more to the live music then the studio music. I was talking to friends and others about this issue. I am finding people are picking live music by how good the new studio records. It is the opposite from what was going on before the 1990s.
Let us take a look at pretty successful hard rock band. The band is going to be Bon Jovi. At the height of their power, Bon Jovi was a huge group back in the 1980’s. We are going to look at their most successful record in their prime and their latest record.
Here is the stats:
Bon Jovi – Slippery When Wet sold 28,000,000 in the world and went in the United States 12x Platinum.
Bon Jovi – The Cicle sold 3,000,000 in the world and went in the United States Gold
What does this say about the band or the music industry? I do not think it is a negative look at Bon Jovi. I believe it shows that people are not buying records as much as they use to in the past. These stats do include downloads. I believe what is happening on record sales. People are buying one or two songs that they like from the album asides buying the whole like they did in the past. Let us look at another artist but current.
Here is the stats:
Britney Spears – …Baby One More Time sold 30,000,000 in the world and sold only 12,144,000 in the United States.
Britney Spears – Femme Fatale sold 3,000,000 in the world and sold 769,000 in the United States.
Britney Spears came into the scene 10 years after Bon Jovi as far as a recording artist. I believe we are seeing a trend from these numbers. Numbers do not lie. As far as big record companies and well known artists their sales are down. If we go beyond the well known artist and big record companies, there are new bands coming up and doing very well. I realize some are doing it for the love for the music and that is why most bands get into this career.
In closing, let us face it and it is true. People are downloading singles and not buying the whole records. I am old school on getting and listening to my music. I love getting the hard copy but over the last few years. I have been downloading my music. Here is why I am doing it. I have not time to sit down and order or go to a record store. Two it is to storage files in a computer then having CDs and racks all over my place. I believe this is happening in the book industry too. People are buying less and less paper backs or hard covers and downloading their books into their Nook, Kindle, or Tablets. We are getting into the computer age and this is the change that most people do not like it. Music being an art will live on and people will spend their money on this product. Live music will live on and bands and artists will make their money their. As music fans we need to support the bands. If you have pick, it is fine. Just make sure you are buying your music in any form. Go get some! Drink it! Enjoy it! Metal it! \m/
Bill DJ Weiser