This week we have been focusing a lot on the economy and what it could mean for our industry. With the prospect of music being less of a get-rich-quick-scheme everyday, we will start to see a landscape of less “entrepreneurs” and “investors” indulging in hobby projects. It takes a real passion to keep pursuing a dream without the likely possibility of great financial gain. The prospect of one day getting rich off of your hobby is one of the few things that fuels the American dream we hold dear. In our youth, we are taught the Richard Cory fable of the man who has all this money but has a miserable day to day life and it later brings him to suicide and/or madness. So what is to become of those of us who pursue a career in the music business out of the love of it yet can no longer make the living we desire from music?
It is no secret many non-musicians pursue the music industry and are funding it in a way to get a little more hip or cool. Around any major city you can’t throw a stone without hitting a studio, record label, or music start-up funded by someone looking to get rich fast on the glamorous dollars that are in the music industry. With the growing ills of labels no longer turning out big bucks, and the constant closure of recording studios, are these vanity projects dead? Are we finally on the times that have been prophesied where only those with a true passion will be involved in the rat race to be successful in the music industry?
Investors and entrepreneurs aren’t the only people who come to the music industry looking to find riches. We have all known a person who thinks joining a band is a quick way to dollars, not recognizing the extraordinary odds against them. Nevermind the growing prospect that most moderatley sucessful bands/musicians could begin to be even less financially stable.
As a record producer, on a weekly basis I field questions from people who see the fun of my job and my success looking to do the same. What they do not see is the struggle that every studio is going through to compete with each DIGI 003 sold. The blind spot is that many studios are barely able to compete with home recording and those looking to get into the business stand little chance of getting noticed in a crowded pond.
With a saturation of countless projects on every
corner have you seen business thin out? Are we getting close to the
point where few studios will be able stay booked? Have applications at record labels started to wane?