In the good ol’ days, I could’ve signed a deal with some huge record label, borrowed a ridiculous amount of money from them to record those songs, and end up putting 2 good songs, 5 mediocre songs, and 3 terrible songs on an album.
Then, if anybody bought my 2/5/3 (good/boring/bad) album, the retailer takes a cut, the distributor takes a cut, the label takes a cut and repays themselves (with loan-shark-level interest) that fat loan I took to record. Then, if there’s anything left, I’d get about $0.50 an album. That’s $0.05 per song, for you non-math types. Seems like an awful lot of hullaballoo for me to earn $0.05 per song.
As a musician, I don’t need those companies who are trying to preserve a bloated, dead business model by litigating their customers into obedience. I don’t need those companies who are trying to preserve a bloated, dead business model by censoring the Internet with asinine, heavy-handed legislation like the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA).
I don’t need that huge loan to record some songs anymore. I can do it with my computer and less than $500 worth of gear in my basement.
And I don’t need that distribution deal anymore. I can effectively and efficiently deliver my music to anyone in the world who has Internet access.
And I don’t need those retailers anymore, either. I can use places like AmazonMP3. Or iTunes. Or Bandcamp. Or Soundcloud.
People who pirate music are actually just an under-served market segment. Music pirating is the market telling me it doesn’t value recorded music the way it used to. It’s my job as a business owner, then, to shift my unit of value to something the market is willing to pay for.
If you’d like to learn more, watch the video below. Then, once you’re sufficiently pissed off, do something about it.