From The Plastic Hallway

“The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side.” -Hunter S. Thompson

The De-Evolution of Everything

"In the future, everyone will be world-famous for 15 minutes.” ~ Andy Warhol

The fact that anyone ever does anything online but watch porn, is a small miracle in and of itself. There is so much porn, so much glorious porn, online, that one would need nine lives and the many arms of Vishnu to consume it all. Even if you somehow manage to watch All Of The Porn, there is still an overwhelming glut of entertainment available.

That sitcom you enjoyed from 20 years ago? Watch every episode.

That CD you accidentally left in your girlfriend’s old Duster? Listen to every song.

Photos from every friend’s wedding in the last 10 years? Relive it all, again and again.

The mass proliferation of Everything is overwhelming at best. I’m turning 40 this year, and grew up with 4 channels of TV in a suburb of Philly. Cable was not available in my neighborhood until I was a teenager, so I remember how important it was for my family to be gathered on the couch for the start of the Cosby Show at 8pm on a Thursday evening.

We have gone from a culture of controlled scarcity to a culture of contrived insanity. From a media standpoint, the average consumer has access to a menu of options akin to a naked heroin binge in the middle of Times Square on New Year’s Eve. Whoa, doggie.

How do recording artists compete with all of that? People only have two eyes and two ears to take it all in – how is any artist supposed to cut though the clutter and gain any form of sustainable traction? Is making it great enough? http://bit.ly/MakingItGreat

Maybe.

Oh, you have a new album out? Who cares.

You’re selling tickets to a webcast? Who cares.

Merch? Tour dates? Your song is on some TV show? Who. Fucking. Cares.

Once something is great, it must be brought to market. The marketing challenges for recording artists are nothing short of massive: even if an artist can get on a Spotify curated playlist, perform on Fallon, tour with Taylor Swift, advertise their music on TV, and get significant radio play, does the average consumer care? See above.

The real answer is, “well, yeah, sort of”. Sales of music are certainly down, but consumption is on the rise: http://www.homemediamagazine.com/music/nielsen-2015-music-retail-consumption-15-37346

Is all new music being marketed competitively? Maybe. This is the great challenge of being a creative in 2016. Breaking through without breaking the bank, and doing so with an eye toward sustainability. Not easy. And yet artists soldier on. Despite all of the porn.

Maybe we need to think outside the box, pun intended. Has the market been cornered on synching new music to pornography? Anyone? Bueller?

Great music will always find an audience.

- JLS

 © 2017 Noble Steed Music