No Middle Class In World Of Pop 2013
At this point I have more than my own fair share of friends in the music business and I have no answers, zero, as to how to make a damn living at it. It is a mixture of dumb luck and extreme talent: you need both, the right song, the right time, the right place. You need to have a licensing agent of super natural gifts, lowered expectations and your fingers crossed and recrossed and all of that? Who knows? How can you tell these things?
The Indies are now completely screwed, with the brilliant idea in the 1990s of leaving the distribution to the majors and handling A&R themselves they thought they had it made. But then the majors were offered stakes in the streaming service and accepted 6 cents per thousand streams. The Indies got screwed.
They can’t make money touring (often they have to pay to join a tour), guess merch is a revenue service, but that’s just tees and vinyl because nobody is gonna buy a CD, they can’t make money from anything.
At some point, there is gonna be a serious downside to the downsizing of profit. Much like nyc in 2013, we are losing the middle class of pop performers, the rich are ok, the poor are still poor, but the middle is falling apart and serious musicians, Maria Taylors of the world, are bailing. They have no option, they have no future. It is like they are degenerate gamblings risking their lives on the longest of long shots.
I don’t know how popular music can deal with the loss of the middle ground, of the popular but not hugely popular pop band. How can we survive without them.
I was talking about this with a friend of mine and he noted how NYC clubs demand a minimum before they let you play. Bands can’t even play the clubs any more and so the bands that do play the clubs must have money, maybe I mean parents behind them.
As for the clubs themselves? We’ve just lost Roseland and the Living Room is now closing their doors while they search for cheaper digs.
Something has to give here, but what? When you have no middle class what you have is revolution. Who is going to revolt? How?