Record Labels: Indies vs. Majors

Unsigned Artists: Record Labels vs. Indie Labels vs. Do-It-YourselfThere's a nice Cliffnotes-ish comparison between the potential paths that can be taken by artists, i.e. the choice between going the indie label route or the major label route. Though a little outdated -- there's little or no mention of any technological innovations or innovative business models that have arisen within the last 3-4 years -- the artcile Record Labels: Indies vs. Majors, by Michael Hill, is a good read.

One section talks about the movement towards Do-It-Yourself music creation and distribution models:

[Sue Drew]sees a massive conceptual shift in how everyone in the field, no matter their size, approaches their business: "I see the entire industry moving towards a complete do-it-yourself system. The only difference in signing to a major instead of an indie would be in the money you receive up front.

"I believe that the majors will become a structure that houses an executive staff. You would then handpick who you want to work your record from the outside. That is, artists themselves would choose who they want to A&R, market, and publicize their records. Artists would have their 'team' and use their label as a sales and distribution center."

Parts of the music industry already work in this way, especially in the online world. The explosive growth of home recording studios will only lead to an explosive growth in the number of unsigned musicians looking to take the next step: promoting the music they've produced at home.

(Thanks to Gold Camp Entertainment for pointing the article out)

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