Do you want to know what is wrong in the music industry? The problem with the industry is not that talent is lacking, it is the overdose of it. Then the challenge of each artist must be to create a unique proposal within all the saturated noise that is the media.
Let’s go on a trip with our friend Gamaliel, a fictional ballad singer. Gamaliel has just been discovered by an agent while singing his songs in a cafe. The agent says, “you have a beautiful voice and the ‘look’ of a balladist.” He signs him on his label. He takes him to a studio in Miami and hires a music producer. He records an album, with a video, and puts a single on the radio and digital platforms.
He releases his first single “You’ll Love Again.” Gama Jorge (as he is known now), shares it with friends; they share it forward and so on. Those who listen to it on the radio, Shazam it and begin to share it. Soon, the video of the song has amassed almost 500,000 views on YouTube in anticipation of the album’s release.
When the album comes out, then his first single, Gama is “a hit”, his second and third singles are ‘hits’. His music is on the radio, ads and TV shows. The agent puts the album in the hands of Enrique Iglesias, who when listening to his music personally decides to buy distribution rights for Latin America and the United States. Gama opens his most recent tour, and the rest is history.
If all this seems fanciful, it is because it is. Sadly, this is the idea that some have about the music industry. That it is as simple as creating a “catchy” song, putting it in the hands of people with “connections,” and as soon as the audience hears it, they will ask for more.
The concept of making a hit record responds to an outdated industry model; when it was possible, by the limited means available, to catch the public’s attention all at once. This with the help of people in control of the media – labels, stations, agencies, television channels. The conversation was then unidirectional, the public did not choose what it consumed. Now the audience is not as passive.
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