guest post by: Nuwri Ghostleaf
The music industry as we know has changed forever, and the Life of a single | Yesterday,Tomorrow,Online has changed back to the future. What do I mean by that, well back in the day, singles were what drove the industry for months at a time, some good, some bad, producers would pack the albums with 10 to 12 songs, some made for single life and others just filler songs. The major labels would ride out a single, as long as radio would play it, only to have the fans pick the next single by the most requested off of the album . Now mind you the artist may have a next single in mind, but due to the contract structures back in the day, it really wasn’t an artists position to say much of what was going to happen as far the album was concerned because record executives knew what was best, another article all together for another time.
So back to my meaning of “Back to the Future”, well with the advent of the internet and social media, spotify,last.fm and the many other online avenues artist and the few remaining major labels have at their disposal, mixtapes, ep’s, cd’s, collaborations, are all dictating the new but old way (back to the future) of multiple singles out at the same time, with the fans through social media once again letting the artists know what should be the next single(s) by way of simply asking for it.
From and old time frame of a 6 month run or should we say milking of a single, to a milking of multiple singles and videos and Tweets and Facebook, and Youtube and all the hundreds if not thousands of ways to get the job and word out, that it can simply be overwhelming for the average creative musical mind. So what is the life span today of a single? depends on whether you are an Independent Artist, or signed to one of the last remaining majors.
Independents call their own shots while the bureaucracy of the majors will still try and milk it for as long as they can, even though social media will say music and it’s distribution moves as fast as tweets. The real of it all, fans are really dictating your next move as an artist, they are smarter, wiser and less tolerant to stay a fan if you don’t Engage with them in this empowerment era of Facebook, Linkedin, there are just so many to list in this article, see:
Have you ever stopped and ask yourself as a music lover, why are they still playing that song, it’s over already, but radio still just keeps playing it over and over, you already bought the album or cd and are so ready for the next one but yet they still keep on playing it? you would think that even radio would get tired not to mention the listeners, well as a song writer you love it, because it’s money literally in the bank, but as a music lover, it’s so yesterday, Well that is the way or should I say was the Life of a Single | Yesterday,Tomorrow,Online Today!
With a lot more artists going the indie route, they too are realizing this crucial fact of single preferences, and then the purchasing of just the singles they the fan consumer likes, placing those songs of choice on their mixtapes of downloads. With the costs sky rocketing well over 6 figures to buy a hit song today (payola) which by the way is alive and well still to this day, the indie artists must have a game plan that utilizes the full capacity of the entire use of the internet and all of social media, which can be done for a small miniscule portion of traditional old school ways, it’s called the Viral effect.
So with all that being said, and I could add so much more, the Life of a Single in today’s industry is what the consumer/fan makes it. Engage with them if you are an artist/musician, if you are a music lover consumer, you already know and are experiencing the new download industry first hand and I say to you as a fellow music lover, give the single life time to grow on you, maybe not 6 months, because sometimes you just love the groove so much you’ve got to have it Now!, well then get it, just always remember, “You are the Final judge in all consumerism”