Everything is not going to be ok....or is it? I just had a great thought and almost an instant inspiration towards success in this risky biz. Where do I begin?
Music sales are down. Really out of all genre's, Hip Hop/Rap, has suffered the most. Why is this genre targeted? It's not that it's becoming less popular, it's just downloading is becoming totally universal and practical for everyone. Almost every household has a home computer. Computers are no longer price inflated and can be purchased almost on any budget now in days. The days of overpriced fast internet is also gone. Who do you know still has dial up?
Okay, so thats pretty obvious. Technology has caught up and is becoming accessible to everyone. It's a good reason why downloading is overpowering music sales..but I have a few more that are really out the box.
White people are being white again. It sounds stupid, maybe ignorant, but look. Indie Rock is ruling the world right now. These past few years I've seen the two major TV music channels (MTV and VH1) smoothly transition away from an urban dominated cast of video's and shows to a more suburban landscape of lets say..grassroots. I don't think they are responsible for this takeover, just a mere additive. But these channels will always reflect what's goin on across the music board. It's not a opinion that white people( lets just say suburban) have made up huge percentage of Rap music listeners. Slowly and surely they have crossovered (or maybe just a new generation of our ''little brother'' grown up) into more rock influenced records. They no longer buy Rap music. Just an occasionally download here and there, something not worth buying...
this is my idea of the biggest and most underrated idea of why Hip Hop is not selling but still hugely popular.
The music sucks and we've lost the connection to these artist. Wait..if the music sucks why are we still downloading? ummm because the music sucks. We do not want to take a gamble buying an album we feel may not be worth it. We download it, for free, and check it out. We've been burned by so many releases (even from some of the greatest groups, solo, and duo's that have not progressed) that were garbage we refuse to pay our money.
. I figured out what it takes to sell records and survive and it's the most simple, mind opening revelation ever.
Connection. Having real fans. I'll just quickly use people like Aesop Rock, Atmosphere, MF Doom and Sage Francis as an example. They have die hard fans. I've seen girls balling in tears outside of an Atmosphere show when they wouldn't let them in due to maximum capacity. I saw, what she saw, as her life unfulfilled and meaningless. God, what does it take to get a fan like that?
Do you think you will ever see someone crying because they can't into a Soulja Boy show?
These fans buy records and support because they are giving back what the artist is giving to these records. Hard work and effort. Two things that have been lost in the mainstream. These fans are very internet educated and most likely come across tons of misc. download links to their fav. artist records..just to not click..and wait for the real record to be released. They want to buy the record. Support. Feel they contributed and gave something, that seems like nothing, but that is everything. The want to hold the artwork. Read the lyrics as the CD plays. They want to show appreciation to the artist for the great music they sacrificed to many sleepless nights, relationships, and stability offers to make.
Good music sells. Real music sells. That will be the only thing left standing once this digital age demolishes all we have learned. There will still be real people. Real fans who will support you as long as your pour your blood, sweat and tears to your records.
Your catchy singles, and 7x hooks, lackluster redundant video's, cheap gimmicks, skill less lip syncing, scribbled rhymes, and poor execution..will..not..sell.
They will stay popular for entertainment purposes. But real artist don't entertain. It's way beyond entertainment. It's therapy, inspiration, and reality. Your ring tones will sell. Your albums will be downloaded. But you are not real..therfor you fans won't be either.
There is hope is this so called doomed music biz. It's just only a few will be standing. The ones standing will deserve it. And that's all that matters.