Continuing the thought from the previous post, here was another prevailing opinion from the excellent Podcamp 4 panel on “Promoting Music Through Social Media”:
- Record companies are essentially useless to artists at this stage, at least at the “you’re-not-super-famous-already” level. Future music will be released via corporate sponsorship (the brilliant example that came up was some company sponsoring Metallica, but I can’t remember what the company was. It was something like “Summer’s Eve presents Metallica”. I’ll have to watch the session video).
At some stage early on I thought I wanted a record contract. For years I played bar gigs with bands, wrote songs and made records, hoping that some A&R person would stumble onto my evident awesomeness.
Then there came the night when I was playing in someone else’s band, and while we were playing to yet another huge crowd and alleged “label interest”, I had an epiphany: I was not having any fun.
I realized that what I enjoy about music isn’t whether there’s a “deal” involved, or whether there’s a huge crowd. What I enjoy is the sheer freaky Zen of being taken away by the music that I’m playing (or listening to). Other-worldly joy. And I knew at that point that I didn’t need a record company. I just needed to find my musical happy place.
And it turns out that I need to make music whether anyone else is listening or not.