For disgruntled music fans wondering why music played on the radio is not only worse now than in the past but also not nearly as revelatory as it once was, this book presents a detailed discussion of how the record business fouled its own livelihood. This insightful dissection covers numerous aspects of the industry's failures and shortcomings, including why stockholders play an important role, how radio went from an art to a science and what was lost in that change, how the record companies alienated their core audience, why file sharing might not be the bogeyman that the record industry would have people think, technology’s effects on what and how music is heard, and dozens of other reasons that add up to the record industry’s current financial and artistic woes. With eye-opening observations culled from extensive interviews, this exposé offers insights into how this multi-billion-dollar industry is run and why it’s losing so much money.
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Hank Bordowitz is a veteran music journalist, a former recording artist, a music business consultant, an adjunct professor, and the author of seven critically hailed books, including Bad Moon Rising, Billy Joel, Every Little Thing Gonna Be Alright, and Turning Points of Rock and Roll.From Publishers Weekly:
Music journalist Bordowitz (Turning Points in Rock and Roll) delivers a concise summary of the current state of the record business, with fascinating details delivered in a no-frills style ("The RIAA has compared the practice of downloading songs 'without permission' to shoplifting, but whose permission do the downloaders need?"). Unless you are a Britney Spears fan, Bordowitz presents a fairly convincing argument that current music "sucks" by looking at "how the system that turned music into a commodity ultimately failed, trivializing its product and the user of that product." He presents an inside look at how the music business works, from artist management to production and distribution, as well as current music technology. And a section on "The Messy Suicide of Commercial Radio" is an excellent overview of the change over the last three decades from the free-form radio formats of the 1960s to the homogenized niche corporate radio stations of the '90s and today. In the end, this is an eye-opening look at why, as Bordowitz quotes music mogul David Geffen, "If Joni Mitchell were just starting out today,... she'd have trouble getting radio air play." (Jan.)
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