Do you think Bands/Singers should give their music away for free?

June 27, 2008 12:19pm CST
A couple of days ago, the UK band McFly announced on the BBC news that they are to following in the footsteps of Prince and give their new album away with the Mail On Sunday. It will be in the 20th July edition. The reason for this is to promote their tour of which tickets will be released on the same day. McFly and Prince aren't the only ones to have done this recently. Colplay let anyone download their new single for free and Radiohead allowed fans to choose what to pay for their last album, In Rainbows. Do you think this is the start of a trend? How do you feel the music business will be effected? Do you think new bands will find it harder to get their songs heard? Should this be allowed? By the way, I totally respect McFly's idea in doing this. It will mean that their songs are heard by a lot more people and they should gain respect. The Sun, Popjustice, Channel 4 and Heat have all said the new album is brilliant and their best so far. I am certainly excited!
2 people like this
4 responses
@greysfreak (1385)
• United States
28 Jun 08
I think it's a great way to promote ones music. So yes, I do think it's a good idea. That being said, I don't know it's for everyone, I think a band should choose whether or not they want to do this or if it is practical even. I recorded a cd several years ago, I found original songs and we paid a flat per song fee for me to record, and that allows me to record the songs and sell them, give them away etc. I have given away a lot of cd's, my dad has actually sold some of them to his customers, who actually wanted to pay for the cd as opposed to taking it for free. He even sold one to some people in a parking lot, he was listening to my cd in the car once and this couple asked him who it was and he said it's my daughter, and he offered to give them a copy of my cd, well, they gave him money for it. That was just right after I recorded it and pressed my own cd's. Now, the reason I say it depends is, all of this costs a lot. Not including what I paid for the songs. Other costs were the duplicator I bought to copy my cd and a printer and blank cd's to print cd labels, cd cases and inserts, which I also assembled and printed myself. And all that was just for my promotional cd's. Then for the official release of my cd we had to get licences for the songs, pay for professional cd duplication, which actually was a good deal through discmakers, but still expensive. So that's looking a several thousand dollars, not totally sure. The bad thing about being a solo independent artist is, no promotions. I have my myspace, and my cd is available quite a bit of places online, including i-tunes, but if people don't know they can't buy it, which is why I have had only limited success. So there are a lot of considerations when making this decisions. So actually, I highly respect any band or artist who gives away their music for free, because music costs a lot to produce. As an artist myself I am obviously on the side of the musician, I definitely care more about them than the company that is representing them, and a lot of the time the company comes away with much more money than the artist to begin with. That being said, I wouldn't turn down a deal, simply because well, I am a singer--not a business person or marketing expert, so at the end of the day, the money difference is probably worth it. Sorry for writing so much about this, I just see it from the different angles and come to a conclusion that way. Me, I'm both a music lover and a music artist. The music lover in my hands down says yay, give all the music away free, but ss a music artist who has yet to make it, can see the value in charging 5-10 dollars for something you put yourself into, and something that people can enjoy.
@mommyboo (13198)
• United States
28 Jun 08
As long as YOU are making that 5-10 dollars, I support that. My issue is that I do not want any of my money siphoned off to the record company instead of the artist who worked so hard. Independents can still do well on the charts, and the good thing about that as well is that as the artist you choose what gets released or played instead of a company. Back when I bought cassettes or cds, I discovered that there might be 5-6 released songs that I would hear on radio that convinced me to buy the tape or cd, but I'd also find at least 1 or 2 other songs on the album that were NOT released that in my opinion would have been hits. I like to read fine print, sometimes those songs were labors of love for the artists or bands - they were songs that the artists either wrote music or lyrics or both for. That leads me to believe that record companies do not care about their artists, and I've heard lots of artists complain via interviews and on tv about being 'creatively stifled'
@peaceful (3301)
• United States
27 Jun 08
This is a very wise and smart move as far as I am concerned. The music industry has always had too much control on artists and their creativity... Prince went through hell back in the 90's with with the label that tried to own him. Freedom to create and dispense one's own work, in one's own way should be a basic right, and not one that is "governed" by the power of a wrong-headed industry. I certainly love the fact that at sites like GCAST, you can see and hear a whole bunch of newer artists as the grow and make their way onto our Lives... Please enjoy: http://www.gcast.com BTW: If you have anything to say to the World or even Play to the World, it's all absolutely free! :)
27 Jun 08
McFly's label Universal Island tried the very same thing. That's is why McFly have too left the label and created their own, Super Records. The real McFly is coming!
• Philippines
28 Jun 08
I don't think this will give a negative effect on the music industry instead I think it will boost up the public more to get into music and to motivate them to buy the original and stop patronizing piracy. With the cost of original cd's today and how costly it can get you just to buy a cd with only 10 or more songs people will choose pirated cd. Though smashing pumpkins done this with a more complicated reason but I think this kind of give away copies are a good start to get the attention of the general public.
• India
28 Jun 08
People singing about booties and jugs has become a very common thing now. And people listen to that 24 x 7. So for the real music makers, a strategy like this is good. Many artistes give away some of their singles as free download.So that they gain a larger consumer base for their albums when they are released. bourne