Monday, October 20, 2014

2014 First Year Ever Without A Platinum Album

No Platinum Albums
With all the albums that have come out this year it's pretty amazing that exactly zero have been certified platinum by the RIAA. Yes, you read that right - there have been no million selling albums this year yet!

What's worse, it doesn't look like there will be any by the end of the year either. The two closest are Beyonce's self-titled album and Lorde's Pure Heroine, but both aren't even reached the 800,000 mark yet and their sales have slowed in recent months.

Actually, there has been one million seller - the soundtrack to Frozen has sold over 3 million, but that's a soundtrack and not a popular artist.

Back when the business was at its peak, there might have been 20 to 30 million sellers by this time just about every year (both recent releases and catalog), but those days are long gone.

On the other hand, there have been 60 platinum songs so far this year, but even that's down about 20% from last year, as the music consumer moves to streaming instead of purchase.

Yes, we're definitely in a singles era where the song is vastly more important than the album, but we're also in a very important YouTube era where a song can get 100 million views yet sell less than 10,000 copies. And today, that's considered a bit hit.
----------------------------------

3 comments:

Rand said...

...and it keeps on getting more disappointing and depressing all the time...

Where's my Time Machine when I need it?

Steve Greenberg said...

On the surface this is a "bad" thing but I think it some bears important similarities to the time that preceded the notably creative period in the 60s and 70s. Before FM and Album based rock, pop music was about singles and tightly controlled radio playlists. What followed was an organic evolution of artists and people tuning out of the mainstream and into what they were truly interested in.

In more recent years the industry killed itself with being overly focused on revenues and giving up the practices of meaningful artist development and delivering what is relevant to people. Heck, the record industry didnt even do anything to keep live music going- DUH!

People are simply seeking out what they like and the Internet is where they find it. It is more like an electronic version of going back to local and regional scenes, styles and genres. People find what resonates with them, now they can just choose from a worldwide selection instead of just what is near them and on the their local radio stations.

I think was is coming now is a resurgence of live performance joined with internet streaming. Along with that I believe the listener will pay the performer directly in the future.

The advertising based model is ridiculous and will eventually be completely dominated by larger corporations, if it isnt already- yet another repeat of the original problem (think of free radio paid for by ads then gobbled up by large companies)

A very interesting indicator of the positive trend is a number of younger performers who are well trained on classical instruments and building careers with a modern approach, (ie 2 Cellos and Tina Guo). These acts have an outlet that would never make it passed A&R in the old model, and they have an audience.

In one sense I like it the way it is today, artist do what they for the love of the art and cannot expect to make a huge income necessarily, that weeds out the posers! You dont have cut a deal with a big company, you do it yourself and build up a support team from the ground up. That is much more exciting and interesting in the end.

Steve Greenberg said...

On the surface this is a "bad" thing but I think it some bears important similarities to the time that preceded the notably creative period in the 60s and 70s. Before FM and Album based rock, pop music was about singles and tightly controlled radio playlists. What followed was an organic evolution of artists and people tuning out of the mainstream and into what they were truly interested in.

In more recent years the industry killed itself with being overly focused on revenues and giving up the practices of meaningful artist development and delivering what is relevant to people. Heck, the record industry didnt even do anything to keep live music going- DUH!

People are simply seeking out what they like and the Internet is where they find it. It is more like an electronic version of going back to local and regional scenes, styles and genres. People find what resonates with them, now they can just choose from a worldwide selection instead of just what is near them and on the their local radio stations.

I think was is coming now is a resurgence of live performance joined with internet streaming. Along with that I believe the listener will pay the performer directly in the future.

The advertising based model is ridiculous and will eventually be completely dominated by larger corporations, if it isnt already- yet another repeat of the original problem (think of free radio paid for by ads then gobbled up by large companies)

A very interesting indicator of the positive trend is a number of younger performers who are well trained on classical instruments and building careers with a modern approach, (ie 2 Cellos and Tina Guo). These acts have an outlet that would never make it passed A&R in the old model, and they have an audience.

In one sense I like it the way it is today, artist do what they for the love of the art and cannot expect to make a huge income necessarily, that weeds out the posers! You dont have cut a deal with a big company, you do it yourself and build up a support team from the ground up. That is much more exciting and interesting in the end.

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...