Did singers make more money before online downloading?
Pamela Asked… “Did singers make more money before online downloading? I’m writing an article about illegally downloading music online And i just wanted to know whether musicians would make more money when Cd’s and records were bought. rather than now that people download online.”
Making money in the music industry is not exactly cut and dry. Money on music is made on the publishing side of the business. Many artists of the past got screwed badly by signing away their publishing rights, just to get a record contract. Publishing is the heart and soul of the music business. Anytime you hear a song on the radio or television, the money goes first to the publisher, and then gets funneled down to the artists. In the case of music in TV and movies, it is the publisher who negotiates what’s called synchronization rights for the artist. Paul McCartney taught Michael Jackson how to make money buying publishing right. Never did he think Michael would buy the entire Beatles library. Therefore, each time a Beatles song was played, Michael Jackson received the royalty, not the Beatles.
To answer your initial question… Yes, artists made money back in the day, but the record companies had a stronghold on the record industry. It was sign with a big record company or play in small clubs!
Artists once relied on the large record companies for distribution. Today, with the internet, even large artists are going independent and going straight to i-tunes. Distribution is about a thing of the past.
Several years ago I released a Christian song which was a tribute to the tenth anniversary of 9/11. It got picked up by over 200 radio stations over the week of 9/11. I sold less than 100 copies. The music business is changing. Unless a band is ready to go on the road and support their CD, they will have very little success. Record companies today won’t even consider an act unless they can prove to them they are self-sustaining. In my opinion, unless you are a superstar, the money is in songwriting and owning / controlling your publishing rights.