Friday, February 2, 2018
Dear Women Song-Writers / Performers: You don't need the Industry anymore.
It is safe to say that it has been an amazing year for women in music. Between the Times Up Movement, Me Too, and the fact that Lorde, Pink, Kesha,Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Kelly Clarkson, Camila Cabello, Halsey, Dua Lupa and Cardi B (just to name a few) all have wonderful music out confirms the fact that women are doing very well right now in the music industry.
The Grammy's president loves to differ however. It's funny that recently he has backtracked on his initial statement about women needing to "step up" to be nominated for more grammy's, The huge backlash he received is well deserved, and sadly reflects how tone deaf the music industry really is.
It brings up the huge elephant in the room that everyone needs to be talking about. Technology has become not only so advanced but also incredibly accessible for everyone. Which means, we are more connected now more then ever for the first time in....ever. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. All have become important tools for the entertainment industry to use to keep their artist in constant communication with the fans, and that has completely changed the game.
Amazon music, ITunes and Spotify have made it easier for the consumer to not only listen to their favorite artist, but also purchase their singles or whole albums if they choose.
Buying music in the traditional sense is not what it used to be. Tours have become a better source of income for these artists, and now the music has become the afterthought. So the big question is, where does this leave the music industry powers that be? Do artists really need them as much as they keep telling them they do? The answer is simply no.
Prince, Mj, Radiohead, Bjork, Madonna, have all had their frustrations with the industry, with some of these artists named here gone on to either creating their own labels or just going to smaller more independent labels. You would think with the supposed millions of dollars you could potentially make from the bigger labels, why would they bother going smaller, knowing that it might end up being smaller income for them. The answer is a simple one: artistic freedom and control.
The sad reality of the big labels is that these artists don't have the freedoms that we would all like to believe they have, They can say they are the boss, woke, whatever the case may be, at the end of the day the label gets the last say on almost everything. There are some exceptions, but that is more rare then we all might realize. At this point, I feel the shift is changing, and I feel it's something bigger then just the tone deaf issue of the Grammy's only have 9% of the nominations going to women.
I feel we also need a change in power, and labels at this point have too much power, and have brainwashed these performers and song-writers into thinking they truly need them.
Which is not the case at all.
There are plenty of independent labels or even the possibility of starting their own label if they really wanted too, that could not only give them the creative freedom they truly need, but it would also take away the desire for newer artists to think they need to work with the bigger record labels to be relevant.
My advice to all the singer-songwriters, performers and all over badass women in this fucked up industry:
1.No matter what they keep telling you, you truly do not need them as much as you think you do.
2.Music has become easier to access for your fans, the big box way of purchasing has all gone the way of online, so there is no need to worry about getting your music out there.
3.You can still make records, just use your own money, or find a more independent label who will give you the freedom I know you desire and you deserve.
4.You can still tour! That's where all the money is anyway, just focus all your efforts there if you want too. Even if the venues are a little smaller and the productions are little less grandiose, you truly don't all those bells and whistles.
5.And if you truly worried about not making money from doing this huge shift, just understand this. Whatever you do, the fans will follow. I was so upset finding out that Dr. Luke will still profit off of Kesha's album Rainbow, and I don't want another Dr.Luke to profit off of all your hard work.
Or better yet, why don't you all come together and form your own label! Can you imagine the power you would have?! I think this idea, not matter how big it seems, is the answer in many ways.
Whatever you choose to do, just know the fans will follow! You will never have to worry about that! As long as you keep giving us the amazing music we love then we will always be there to support!
Just know that no matter how many things this industry will say to make you feel lesser then, know that it's bullshit and you don't need them as much as they need you! Let's show the world how badass you all are, and let's give the power back where it should have always been, to the artists.
It's what the industry deserves.