Wise old rocker • 15 May 2010 • The SnowBlog

Wise old rocker

The more I hear about home-taping downloading killing music, the more I wonder who decided that recording musicians then charging others to listen would be a good permanent basis for a business empire. It's always been a tricky thing to insert oneself in the middle between musician and fan. In the olden days, the best you could have done was get the musicians working for you and then lock the door to anyone who wouldn't pay to come in and listen. That model will probably never go away. But for a while, when physical disks (records and CDs) were the commonest way to hear a tune, it got easy to charge for recordings. Now it's more difficult again. But don't take my word for it, listen to Mick Jagger's wise words on the subject: Jagger: Well, it's all changed in the last couple of years. We've gone through a period where everyone downloaded everything for nothing and we've gone into a grey period it's much easier to pay for things - assuming you've got any money. BBC: Are you quite relaxed about it? Jagger: I am quite relaxed about it. But, you know, it is a massive change and it does alter the fact that people don't make as much money out of records. But I have a take on that - people only made money out of records for a very, very small time. When The Rolling Stones started out, we didn't make any money out of records because record companies wouldn't pay you! They didn't pay anyone! Then, there was a small period from 1970 to 1997, where people did get paid, and they got paid very handsomely and everyone made money. But now that period has gone. So if you look at the history of recorded music from 1900 to now, there was a 25 year period where artists did very well, but the rest of the time they didn't. [source: the BBC via BoingBoing]


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