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Successful band that doesn't do business with the music companies

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Successful band that doesn't do business with the music companies

Old 05-22-03, 11:37 AM
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Successful band that doesn't do business with the music companies

I watch CNBC every morning and Mike Hegadus is always doing interesting reports about different companies. This morning he did a report about a band that has been performing for 17 years, is more successful than bands that sign deals with record companies and sells their music online.

Here is their website.

http://www.widespreadpanic.com/

Now that a major media network has caught up to this, I wonder what it will do to other independent artists and the large music companies?
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Old 05-22-03, 11:46 AM
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Ani Difranco started her own record company and refuses to sign with a major label.
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Old 05-22-03, 11:50 AM
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This is different. A record company still signs bands to a contract and takes some rights to their music. This is an independent band that is successful and that has never done any kind of business with a RIAA member. They make their own CD's and DVD's and sell it themselves.

The point of the report was that other bands might notice that you don't need any kind of record company to go through to put out a CD.
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Old 05-22-03, 11:52 AM
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Yeah, Widespread Panic gets normal radio airplay too. Very successful, considering. They're more of a concert band though, they tour more or less continously.
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Old 05-22-03, 12:17 PM
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String Cheese Incident is another. Not only do they have their own record label (SCI Fidelity Records), they also have their own ticketing agency, concert promotion company and travel agency. Everything's done in-house (though they have been forced to go through Ticketmaster every once in a while).

Prince could be another one, but everything's he's done demonstrates what not to do when an artist leaves a major label...
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Old 05-22-03, 12:18 PM
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Sure, it IS possible to do business in the music industry without the RIAA. It is also possible to get to the moon from my house. But considering the degree of difficulty, it might as well be impossible.
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Old 05-22-03, 12:27 PM
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These are the figures that CNBC gave. They make $11 million from touring which is more than most bands that sign record contracts. They also sell CD's, DVD's and other items on their website. Since I haven't been to a CD section in a store in a long time I don't know if they are in stores.

Even the bands that go through RIAA, the success ratio is very small. Think of all the bands that were hyped up in the 1970's and 1980's and how many of them actually had any staying power. Most bands are one hit wonders.

If people examine the business practices of Widespread Panic then maybe they can copy it and the music business will change. But Widespread Panic charges $15 for a CD on their website so don't expect that to change.
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Old 05-22-03, 01:05 PM
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Widespread Panic's cds are sold in stores. In fact, Best Buy had their new album (Ball...which is fantastic, by the way) on sale for $9.99 the last time I was there. Also, Widespread hasn't always been independent, and I'm not sure they are now. They used to be on Capricorn Records, and now, I believe their music is distributed by BMG.
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Old 05-22-03, 01:14 PM
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Um, Widespread Panic is distributed by BMG. Last time I checked, BMG was a major and a RIAA member. I'm surprised CNBC would do a report based on a faulty premise.

Check their discography at www.allmusic.com-- most of their titles are on Capricorn or Sanctuary records which is distributed by BMG.

I remember getting promos from some of my fellow music industry colleagues.
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Old 05-22-03, 01:34 PM
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A couple of Fugazi's albums have gone gold. They are the epitome of DIY.
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Old 05-22-03, 03:15 PM
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A lot of bands start DIY, but once they get big, it's hard for them to do everything themselves.
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Old 05-23-03, 06:40 AM
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Godspeed You Black Emperor
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Old 05-23-03, 09:50 AM
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Pearl Jam may be going independent - their deal with Epic is finally up, and they're talking about alternative distribution methods based on the success of their bootlegs. They even mentioned a desire to put out "weekend albums" - two or three new songs available for purchase only online.
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Old 05-24-03, 08:08 AM
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Thought of Fugazi as well. I'm fascinated how they conduct their biz. I wonder what would have happened to them if they had inked a big deal?
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Old 05-24-03, 01:30 PM
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Originally posted by Gdrlv
Prince could be another one, but everything's he's done demonstrates what not to do
...with your career.
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Old 05-25-03, 12:29 PM
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Aimee Mann finances all of her production costs herself. She hires out labels for distribution and packaging. Aimee is an incredible artists.
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