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Research into the Music Industry


What is the Music Industry? ď † The music industry sells compositions, recordings and performances of music. The people that work in the industry are the musicians,the companies and professionals who create and sell recorded music those that present live music performances , (promoters, music venues)the people that help the artist organise their careers for e.g.talent and business managers, entertainment lawyers) the DJs that broadcast music journalists,educators etc. The industry is dominated by Four "major corporate labels" ; Universal Music Group, Sony Music,Warner Music Group and EMI and each of them have additional divisions and smaller record labels that cater to different audiences. For example Sony music is made up Colombia,Epic,sYCO music.The live music industry is dominated by Live Nation, the largest promoter and music venue owner. Other important music industry companies include Creative Artists Agency and Apple Inc (which is stated as of 2009 of running the world's largest Internet based music store, the iTunes Store).


The Music industry;Statistics  The results show that in terms of the US music market,Universal dominate however in terms of the world music market,it’s the independent record labels that have the biggest market share showing that independent record labels are proving to be more successful and maybe more artist are preffering to go down this route rather than the corporate ‘big wig’route


The Indie Record label 

The indie record label is a label with no official funding or control of a major record label. Independent labels, go back to the post-war period in the United States, with labels such as Sun Records, King Records, Stax, In the UK during the 1950s and 1960s, the major labels stunted the growth of the indie labels. The punk rock era saw a resurgence of independent labels and the UK Indie Chart was first compiled in 1980.This is a route that many bands go through because although they don’t get the mass media exposure that the acts singed to a major would,they are still able to have control over there sound,image,something that the major labels control once an artist get signed.Whilst many commercial artists are marketed through media I.e: mtv,radio 1,capital etc,indie artist tend to tour a lot,play at live music events,and in this way they connect with their fans more.If they do go commercial,you find their fan bases are larger as they gain new fans,in addition to the ones they had from the beginning.There's a certain level of respect that comes from being signed to an indie label because there’s this feeling that they done it ‘the hard way’.Because of the increased popularity of indie labels,many major labels are now setting up ‘Indie divisions’ or buying into indie record labels in order to capitalise on their success.


The Major Labels Universal: In Depth 

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Universal Music Group is the worlds leading music company and specialises in two main areas: recorded music and music publishing.They discover, develop, market and distribute recorded music representing 98% of the music market. UMG also sells and distributes music video and DVD products, and licenses recordings, encouraging the legal distribution of music online cable and satellite networks Universals artists range from Sheryl crow to Bryan Adams to Latin American stars Enrique Iglesias.Making UMG leaders in both locally and internationally. Universal Music Enterprises is the central U.S. catalog and special markets sector for UMG. UME is made up of several business units and record labels: Universal Chronicles, the unit that manages and markets UMG extensive catalog through retail channels; UTV Records, the television marketing unit; Hip-O Records, its independent label that releases CDs and DVDs from outside sources; New Door Records, a label dedicated to producing new music from historically significant recording artists; UME Digital, the first all digital label from a major music company; Universal Music Media, a company that produces infomercials and long form music programming; Universal Music Special Markets; and Universal Film & Television Music Universal Music Group also includes some of the world leading artist management businesses, including Twenty-First Artists, Trinifold, and 5B. Its live music and event production divisions, responsible for booking and presenting talent throughout the world, include All the Worlds


Indie labels US Indie labels Matador records Kill Rock Stars Merge Records UK Indie Record Labels South west recordings Beggars banquet


Indie Labels:Beggars Banquet In Depth ď † Beggars Banquet started as a small chain of independent record shops in West London and in 1977, encouraged by the deterioration of punk, the Beggars Banquet label was launched with the first band on the label The Lurkers. Later on, into the early '80s, hits with Tubeway Army and Gary Numan spelled successful for the label. They have since released music by Biffy Clyro (one of our bands of inspiration),The Charlatans, The Cult, The Go-Betweens, and Tindersticks. In 2008, Beggars Banquet stopped actively signing acts and now only releases some of its back catalogue..The label became the start point for what is now The Beggars Group, an group of iconic indie record labels. It is the largest and most influential independent group of labels in Europe with 4AD, Matador Records, Rough Trade Records and XL Recordings now the four main labels that help form the group.


The Role of Technology ď †

Internet technology allows independent artists to expose their music to a huge audience without having an major label connection.The increased developmnet of digital music software and the simplicity of it encourages the discovery and the production of new music. Sites with larger libraries of songs are the most successful. As a result this creates many opportunities for independent bands.. If an artist has paid to record,and promote their album, there is hardly anything left for independent artists to distribute their music online.Online digital services offer the opportunity of exposure to a new fanbase and the possibility of increased sales through online retailers. Another advantage is that artists can release music more frequently and quickly if it is made available online. No limit is the largest independent record company in the US with sales of over 75 million records.

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Most artists maintain their own websites as well as having a presence on sites such as MySpace.com. Advances in technology such as message boards, music blogs, and social networks like Facebook are being increasingly used by independent music companies to make big advances in the business,because this where much of the potential audience lie.The number of people who use social networking to find their artists have risen to 72%.The use of social networks and sites like myspace have become a massive breeding ground for new musicains also because of the fact in recent years its become apparent that the major labels are scanning them for new talent as seen with artists like lily allen,chipmunk etc.


Differences Between the major labels and Indie Label ď †

One difference is the huge expenses that major labels pay on getting airtime on commerical radio stations, highly visual,stylised music videos,t.v adds.This is an expense that the indie labels have managed to avoid because they know with a small label like theres they simply cant afford this so prefer to target college and local radio stations that are usually more willing to plug music which is not mainstream Another difference between the two which has contributed to increased album sales of indie acts that has helped to increase album sales for indie labels is that they target consumers who are still willing to pay for music. It’s the fans of mainstream music fans that are stealing music maybe because if this mentality that a lot of the artists are well off anyway and stealing s song that only cost 79p on itunes wont damage there fortune too much.however indie fans are still willing to pay for musc because they understand that for many bands this is there only source of income and they know their money will enable the bands to produce more great music.They respect the hard work of the artists.In addition many artists are adopting a more independent approach by forming their own record labels. This allows them to have complete creative control over the record making process and is the ultimate form of self-expression for any indie artist. One of the biggest differences between indie and major labels is that indie labels let artists keep the rights to their work. Large labels have the option of not releasing any music an artist has recorded, whilst the artist remains bound to them by contract and can't sign with any other label. The artist is taken out of the public eye and effectively has his or her career terminated at the


Role of Live music ď † The opportunity to perform life is hugely important to indie acts because it’s a source of income for them and its also one of their main ways in which they advertise themselves and get exposure.Small,intimate gigs in small location may seem to some,uneffective however its crucial,in connecting with their fan base.This hopefully gives rise to word of mouth advertising and before you know it,everyone wants to know this band,and starts following them on twitter,facebook etc.The link between playing live and building fan bases on these websites is important,in enabling indie acts to generate record sales and get some kind of following. ď † For eg: One of the hottest new names to emerge , the rave metal band Enter Shikari, refused to sign to a major label ,and in March released their debut album, Take to the Skies, on their own label Ambush Reality. The marketing of Take to the Skies was largely down to the band themselves, who played nearly 700 gigs since forming in St Albans in 2003. Word of mouth, combined with a band presence on MySpace ,did the rest.In November 2006 ,Enter Shikari became only the second unsigned act after the Darkness to sell out the leading London rock venue the Astoria. Take to the Skies entered the album chart at number four. In May they undertook a major tour of America,the first British band to do so without the support of a big record company.

Research into the Music Industry  

Research into the Music Industry

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