The burning forrest theroy
I look at the music industry like a forest fire (a sore topic in these parts recently - thank God it rained pretty hard yesterday).
The fact is at the end of the heavy metal era (early 1990's) when band's stopped caring about how they played, how they looked and music was sold MOSTLY to back catalog CDs by the album - the music industry was doing domestically about $33,000,000,000 yearly. Today back out 3 bill for legal downloads and 3 billion for ringtones - that overall number is more like $14,000,000,000. With GenY perfectly willing to steal music when it doesn't mean that much to them yet at the same time willing to pony up $60 for Halo 3 - the music business simply needs to hit rock bottom and that isn't that close yet. There are too many Boomers as Mr. Music described who arrogantly still think they know what is going on. They don't. Simply check the score board. You can NOT give up on the album concept but the majors have. You can not give up on quality sound but the majors have yet HDTV, HD games and movies in HD boom in sales.
In terms of the fire - we need to have all of the dead growth burned off to get back to the glory days of music. An entrepreneurial time like in the mid-1960. Remember: people love music more today than ever. 120,000,000 iPods sold proves that. There is a HUGE audience out there but as Dick Clark is famous for saying "if it ain't in the grooves - it ain't in the grooves" Clearly, today's music isn't musically important enough to compel large volumes of people to buy it. Perhaps a return to development of artists could fix that because in the 1960's that was what a label could do for an artist. I once met Sir George Martin here in LA and he spoke of what it was like teaching The Beatles to get professional instruments, to tune them and be real musicians. In the forest fire - its time we burn off all of the talentless bling bling rappers and Divas and replace them with artists who can play, write and sing. People know the difference and will buy the music. Lastly, labels to save their asses need to sell HD music in mass in the album format - not pushing downloads as anything other than a promotional too. Make a $10 HD DVD album SO IRRESISTABLE with HD concert footage, interviews, games and other goodies PLUS 24-192 stereo and 24-96 surround mixes. People will hear and apreciate the difference but they will not beat the major's doors down. This is something the labels need to promote themselves and with 9 figures worth of funds. The days of free ads on FM radio and MTV are gone and Rome is burning.
My bet is the arrogance of the Boomers that run the labels will allow the city to burn to the ground.
Jerry Del Colliano