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R/E/P => R/E/P Archives => Fletcher => Topic started by: Fletcher on January 04, 2011, 11:33:45 pm

Title: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Fletcher on January 04, 2011, 11:33:45 pm
... and we had dinner... and he was so blindly pissed off it was wonderful.

He had signed this band [who are excellent!!] and is trying to get the album made [yes Virginia, they still make albums]... and keeps getting shit from the boys over him "it doesn't sound like _____, it needs to sound more like "Lady GaGa", it should be closer to ____".

He's ready to either quit or blow his brains out [hope he does the former rather than the latter... but it is what it is].

Funny... I remember hearing some guy from "Loverboy" on a radio interview where he said something to the effect of "we had a great career going and then Nirvana came along".

Now the band that my buddy signed has two things going against them... the "corporate culture" of "instant hits"... and that I really like the band he played me [I have a track record for missing trends]... then again, they didn't sound like anything I'd ever heard that was "commercial"... but had enough really good music going on that they could have become the act which other visionless morons would be trying to compare / copy in a year or so after they changed the game... but it seems like it may never see [or be heard in] the light of day.

Seems the paralysis of lack of innovation has reached something of a pinnacle... but maybe some of the "moving ups" can lead us out of the doldrums [maybe not, but maybe yes...]

Discuss.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 05, 2011, 12:05:10 am
This rodeo sure as hell aint over yet. There some good stuff comin, but it aint gonna be from corporate bean counter ville.  The revolution will not be televised!!!!      

Your gonna see a whole new range of producer/artists that are gonna make rec execs shake in their boots!!  They are gonna seriously not gonna give a shit about any of the hype out there.  After going through the literal hell of REALLY learning how to make records.  People are gonna have no problem living off their live gigs and give music away for free.  Its sad for the studio/engineering biz, but we are back to the days of the people who would be making music even if there was no glitz and glamour in the headlights.

I say let them get everyone tired of shit music, because I'm working on the next Nirvana album!!!

Still, it would not hurt if the giants from the past touched up on LFO's and midi programming techniques!!!    

I go to Burning Man and hear some seriously amazing electronic stuff that even you guys would like, but its all under ground.  And the under ground is the new medium- until we learn how to exploit that underground vibe to make money in the masses!!!!

Cheers
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 05, 2011, 12:41:16 am
Also, I saw the most recent Anthony Bourdain show about Paris.  All the new talented chefs are starting their own small restaurants, and purposley  charging wayyy less.   They do it on pure principal saying things like the best food should not be reserved for the super wealthy only.  There really is a new way of thinking out there.  After the over-draft fees, predatory lending, and people owing $200,00 on a house that is only worth $100,000- you would really be surprised  at the new artists sentiments out there.

People seriously dont give a shit anymore.  That being said, the baby boomers went from kissing Abbey Hoffmans ass to money hungry wolves pretty damn fast.   The underground is fuckin huge and thats where all the kids are hanging out at and putting their cash towards. The web allows events and invites to be done fast and seemless- its changing everything.    

My friends and I throw an event in mexico in these hot springs where you have to drive on a dry lake bed for 2 hours in the middle of nowhere before you even get there.   Every campsite has its own Jacuzzi hot tub in spectacular valley.  People pay $200 tics and we have 2 full stages of bands and DJ's for 3 days- 400 people come and tics sell out in 2 min with 0 advertising/marketing!!.  Places like that is where the real artists are at all over the planet, hiding!!   Theres tons events like that all year long pulling in cash, but the organizers spend the vast majority of that money on the people and the party, and thats why it keeps going strong!!

Cheers
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Silvertone on January 05, 2011, 08:25:50 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Tue, 04 January 2011 23:05

This rodeo sure as hell aint over yet. There some good stuff comin, but it aint gonna be from corporate bean counter ville.  The revolution will not be televised!!!!      

Your gonna see a whole new range of producer/artists that are gonna make rec execs shake in their boots!!  They are gonna seriously not gonna give a shit about any of the hype out there.  After going through the literal hell of REALLY learning how to make records.  People are gonna have no problem living off their live gigs and give music away for free.  Its sad for the studio/engineering biz, but we are back to the days of the people who would be making music even if there was no glitz and glamour in the headlights.

I say let them get everyone tired of shit music, because I'm working on the next Nirvana album!!!

Still, it would not hurt if the giants from the past touched up on LFO's and midi programming techniques!!!    

I go to Burning Man and hear some seriously amazing electronic stuff that even you guys would like, but its all under ground.  And the under ground is the new medium- until we learn how to exploit that underground vibe to make money in the masses!!!!

Cheers



The "underground" music scene has always been around with great music, players , performers and entertainers but it's "the machine" that gets them heard by the masses I'm afraid.

No machine, no masses. Unfortunately even with the internet it still seems to be true today.  You need the hype machine to alert the public who will then be "brainwashed" into supporting whatever has been crammed down their throats over and over again.  Just look at post disco Lady Ga-Ga era as an example.... those of us that lived through the disco era had thought it died a slow and painful death but really it just keeps coming back disguised as these "pop" artist... over and over... no one wants it really but it stays with us like the creepy uncle that wont leave.

I'm just afraid it's how the human condition works... one only needs to look back in "world history" to see how true this is.

Remember people: Propaganda Works!
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: jrmintz on January 05, 2011, 09:27:13 am
I spoke to a friend yesterday who used to be in A&R at a major label until he quit in frustration. He made a few points I thought were telling:

There are no record people at record companies. The only criteria they have to judge whether a song is going to be a hit is by comparing it, bit by bit, to the last big hit as if they were matching bathroom tiles or paint colors.

Since they have no musical judgment they rely on focus groups of consumers to tell them what they like and want. It's a recipe for stagnation. As Henry Ford said, "If I'd asked my customers what they wanted they'd have said a faster horse". The opposite of that is Apple: no one knew they needed or wanted an ipod, iphone, or ipad until someone had the audacity to put it in front of them.

He ran through an impressive list of artists he found and wanted to sign but wasn't allowed to, who went on to be very successful at other labels. Being wrong had no consequences for his superiors, and being right made him a pariah within the corporation.

He says the focus on kids is total, there is no other serious market as far as the label was concerned. And yet the target audience treats music as wallpaper and doesn't feel compelled to pay for it. He believes there is still a huge pool of potential buyers for whom music was formative and will still pay for it, but the labels make no effort to reach them because it goes against the conventional wisdom.

He feels there are plenty of opportunities for success, but that financing is scarce. He thinks someone is going to find an artist, get financing, and market correctly to demonstrate that there is still the potential for big hits with good music - Norah Jones selling 14 million copies of her first album being a good example.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Wireline on January 05, 2011, 10:22:54 am
Quote:

He says the focus on kids is total, there is no other serious market as far as the label was concerned.


This seems so odd, as the people who give kids the money would still buy music, if they ever heard any they liked.  Exactly everyone I know listens to classic rock/classic country/big bands on the radio, by default.  

Perhaps if radio people would stop shooting themselves (and subsequently everyone else involved) in the foot, they might find a whole new and profitable demographic that does not have any desire to whip their hair back and forth or wear meat.

There again, if I knew the answers, I'd be rich.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Edward Vinatea on January 05, 2011, 11:07:04 am
Fletcher wrote on Tue, 04 January 2011 23:33

then again, they didn't sound like anything I'd ever heard that was "commercial"... but had enough really good music going on that they could have become the act which other visionless morons would be trying to compare / copy in a year or so after they changed the game... but it seems like it may never see [or be heard in] the light of day.



There are also periodic movements of the earth's plates and therefore earthquakes. Lady GG has certainly had her own {earthquake} and anybody who was trying to innovate prior to being released have fallen into the crack.

These patterns happened in the past, so you can expect them to continue happening in the future.

Regards,

Edward
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Nick Sevilla on January 05, 2011, 11:30:54 am
We started a tiny record label :

 http://unbridledrecords.com/Unbridled_Records/Submissions_Pa ge.html


We love music.
We do not love most current music.
We aim to find and nurture artists and their art.
Our goal is not to "make hits."
Our goal is not to "get big."
Our goal is to find the music we love, and help it exist.

Our focus is the MUSIC.

Maybe this focus will allow us to find and help artists and their art to continue existing, and eventually, if the art is deemed good, relevant, interesting, by enough people, to give back to the artist and us.

I personally feel that the Art of Music has been under attack by money for far too long.

To me, money is a tool. A tool just like a screwdriver or a wheel. Nothing more and nothing less. It was invented by man, to have more control over other men.

Do we have things enough under control yet? I say, yes, and we have gone too far.

Cheers
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Jim Williams on January 05, 2011, 11:34:26 am
There are many more ex A+R people than there are current A+R people. All of them have similar stories. All of them either quit or got fired after their "discoveries" didn't pan out.

It is typically a 2 year program, either you graduate to something better or you drop out. There are no long term employment opportunities in that field. Those currently employed will find that out as those before them have.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Edward Vinatea on January 05, 2011, 11:46:58 am
Nick Sevilla wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 11:30

We started a tiny record label :

    http://unbridledrecords.com/Unbridled_Records/Submissions_Pa ge.html




You may want to fix your bullet points. I am getting these symbols: ➡

Edward
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: wwittman on January 05, 2011, 01:51:15 pm
The nature of the current state of the music business is that, because of all the stealing predominantly, the only model that makes sense for the big labels remaining is to only go for mega hits.
If you have a monster you can still sell ENOUGH, and make enough collateral other income, to justify the investment.
And that need for only grand slam home runs naturally leads to lots of nervous second guessing, and lowest common denominator thinking.
They want the biggest audience; not a discerning one.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: jrmintz on January 05, 2011, 03:53:17 pm
Bill, what do you think about the idea of reaching out to older listeners who will pay for music? It always gets groans when I say it, but I really believe they're out there. They're just very difficult to put your music in front of so they know it's available. Everyone seems to get curiously passive at the point of trying to reach boomers or gen-x-ers. Obviously there's no corporate reward in it, but is it impossible or just harder than most people want to work?
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 05, 2011, 08:21:19 pm
This shit is so depressing!!  The irony is the that the internet should have brought the world together, but it really just puts everyone in groups and weakens the machine that held us all together!!!!

The focus group thing is just a shame, because thats exactly how the fast food restaurants pick their new menus!!!!!

This is seriously like the Matrix movie, literally!!
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: DarinK on January 05, 2011, 08:47:55 pm
jrmintz wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 12:53

Bill, what do you think about the idea of reaching out to older listeners who will pay for music? It always gets groans when I say it, but I really believe they're out there. They're just very difficult to put your music in front of so they know it's available. Everyone seems to get curiously passive at the point of trying to reach boomers or gen-x-ers. Obviously there's no corporate reward in it, but is it impossible or just harder than most people want to work?


I'm not Bill, but I think what'd you'd need is radio that was interested in those older listeners, and willing to risk playing something for them other than tried & true classics/oldies.  Because almost all radio is corporate radio, they want to focus group everything before playing it, which means that only non-challenging stuff would ever get through.  
It really is all about what radio will play, and they will only play that which is non-offensive to the focus group in question.  The labels can put out as much great music as they want, but if it doesn't do well in a focus group, it will never get played.
For a smaller label that just wants to break even, there's community radio & internet promotion.  I don't know if it would lead to enough sales to break even, though.  It may have to be a labor of love, like all the indie kid labels where the goal is to not lose too much money, and where nobody gets paid.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Nick Sevilla on January 05, 2011, 10:17:03 pm
Edward Vinatea wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 08:46

Nick Sevilla wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 11:30

We started a tiny record label :

     http://unbridledrecords.com/Unbridled_Records/Submissions_Pa ge.html




You may want to fix your bullet points. I am getting these symbols: ➡

Edward


Hi Edward.

I am getting those too. They are the ones I picked. Maybe that is why we both see them on there.

Cheers
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Nick Sevilla on January 05, 2011, 10:18:10 pm
Bubba Kron wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 17:21

This shit is so depressing!!  The irony is the that the internet should have brought the world together, but it really just puts everyone in groups and weakens the machine that held us all together!!!!

The focus group thing is just a shame, because thats exactly how the fast food restaurants pick their new menus!!!!!

This is seriously like the Matrix movie, literally!!


"there is no hit record"...
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: wwittman on January 05, 2011, 11:27:39 pm
jrmintz wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 15:53

Bill, what do you think about the idea of reaching out to older listeners who will pay for music? It always gets groans when I say it, but I really believe they're out there. They're just very difficult to put your music in front of so they know it's available. Everyone seems to get curiously passive at the point of trying to reach boomers or gen-x-ers. Obviously there's no corporate reward in it, but is it impossible or just harder than most people want to work?



it's part of why people thought Starbucks should replace radio... but it HASN'T

it's a big audience if you can tap it, and it's somewhat less likely to download illegally, but it is, as you say, hard to reach.

20 somethings follow each other and get excited.
50 somethings generally don't, to anywhere near the same degree.
50-70 yr olds aren't talking to each other on Facebook and Twitter (in meaningful numbers) telling each other what the cool new thing is to check out.

Carole King and James Taylor are out there touring and filling venues with that audience and doing well on the road.
But will they buy a new RECORD from either of them? I still suspect mostly not.

Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Fletcher on January 06, 2011, 09:29:55 am
Jim Williams wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 11:34

It is typically a 2 year program, either you graduate to something better or you drop out. There are no long term employment opportunities in that field. Those currently employed will find that out as those before them have.


The friend I had dinner with is a 20+ yr. veteran, and definitely a "music guy"... not a "newbie" - not a "hipster kid".  He recently saw an opportunity to "change the world"

I'd never seen him this excited about a band, and when he played their music for me, I have to say I think he was spot on -- which I suppose could be a problem as I rarely like stuff that becomes "mega hits" -- but this was seriously good, and I agree with him -- could have been a "game changer".

I also wonder if Frank Zappa could get signed today.  For that matter, I wonder if The Rolling Stones could get signed today... though I'm sure there is another "Right Said Fred" around the corner much like Lady Gaga is the new Madonna... its a weird world - I'm just glad I have friends who turn me onto stuff like Dark Buster and Swamp Cabbage.

Peace.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Wireline on January 06, 2011, 10:06:35 am
On a country side of things, I really doubt people like George Jones, George Straight, Alan Jackson, and the other 'hard core' country singers could land a label gig.  Many of the traditionalists have gone on to form their own indie/private labels (with a pretty hard hit on the airplay side of things) to maintain a degree of musical integrity.

Strangely, you can play these tunes at any dance hall, and there will be mixed reaction.  As soon as "Amarillo By Morning" or "Neon Rainbow" hit the rotation, the floor is absolutely packed.

But what do they know?
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Jim Williams on January 06, 2011, 12:05:13 pm
Fletcher wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 06:29

Jim Williams wrote on Wed, 05 January 2011 11:34

It is typically a 2 year program, either you graduate to something better or you drop out. There are no long term employment opportunities in that field. Those currently employed will find that out as those before them have.


I also wonder if Frank Zappa could get signed today.  For that matter, I wonder if The Rolling Stones could get signed today... though I'm sure there is another "Right Said Fred" around the corner much like Lady Gaga is the new Madonna... its a weird world - I'm just glad I have friends who turn me onto stuff like Dark Buster and Swamp Cabbage.

Peace.



Imagine a young 20 year old Robert Zimmerman being interviewed by today's A+R person:

Well, Mr. Zimmerman, we find you have a good talent for writing songs. However, you have an appearance and demeanor that we are not looking for right now. We are prepared to offer you a starting staff job as a song writer, under some conditions.

First, you need to drop those funny lyrics and write love songs. You also need to shorten up those songs, about 2:30 is our target. No more long tales that bore the listener.

Now, can you work with us, Mr. Zimmerman?

Recently, oldtimer Brit-rocker Dave Mason did a show here in San Diego. Famous for many Brit rock outfits, he's probably best known for writing "Feeling Alright" for Traffic, stints with Fleetwood Mac and playing acoustic guitar on Hendrix's version of "All Along the Watchtower". It was easy for old Dave, he lives up the coast in Santa Barbara. He did an interview in the local UT. It was very enlightening.

Dave offered some insights into the "record biz". First, he said he's given up on the "industry". He no longer plays in the record biz. He does not intend to release any new material, ever. He said he didn't leave the record biz, the record biz left him.

Still, he has his studio and records constantly. Dave says he still gets together and records with friends for FUN only. He said he only does it for himself, not the fans or public. The tracks are to never be released except to those close friends and the participants. It is on it's own enough for Dave, but not enough for the rest of us.

For Dave Mason, recorded music as art is now a private family affair. I personally understand Dave completely. There is a freedom that comes from unshackling the chains we attach around ourselves. Dave is now a free man, free to pursue his dreams and loves, unhindered from outside forces and influences.

As such, the man is at peace with himself. I can only hope to be able to hear his unencumbered work some day.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: compasspnt on January 06, 2011, 06:10:26 pm
Wireline wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 10:06

I really doubt people like George Jones, George Strait, Alan Jackson...could land a label gig...



I know what you mean, but in these three cases, each of those guys is a very powerful person, each with massive talents. And in at least two of the cases, most people regard them as very good looking.

Sometimes there are people that just could not be stopped.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: jrmintz on January 06, 2011, 06:35:00 pm
So we know it's bad, we know it's weird. Then how do we, as people who love making records, go into the future? Out of necessity we've all learned to make good records with much lower budgets than in the past, that's a good thing. The necessity for artists with undeniable charisma, talent, songwriting ability, and looks hasn't changed much. I'm used to handing off the finished product to someone else. That's over, and maybe that's the biggest difference for people in our niche. The ability to be passive after the record's done has ended. Do we need to become manufacturing, marketing, distribution and promotion people all in one? At some point we have to stop mourning the passing of the business we loved and make a plan. What's the plan? Let's make one now...
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: QUEEF BAG on January 06, 2011, 07:08:02 pm
zappa had some thoughts

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KZazEM8cgt0
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Edward Vinatea on January 06, 2011, 08:36:46 pm
Jim Williams wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 12:05


Still, he has his studio and records constantly. Dave says he still gets together and records with friends for FUN only. He said he only does it for himself, not the fans or public. The tracks are to never be released except to those close friends and the participants.


Very interesting story, Jim. Who knows what the future brings and what the shape of the music industry will be. However, Dave's pursuit of 'creative freedom' with all his friends today may have built a foundation for a big copyright dispute among all future assignees tomorrow.

FWIW and YMMV,

Edward

EDIT: Obviously, if nothing is copyrighted then it's up for grabs.

Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: McAllister on January 06, 2011, 10:40:59 pm
In my interactions with A&R (only a few, but still) they all claimed the same thing. To quote one, "We don't want a band to sound just like Guns 'n' Roses, we want a band to sound like themselves." But then they went and signed six bands that sounded like just like Guns 'n' Roses.


Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 06, 2011, 10:49:27 pm
Hey edward-  Are you the guy in this video starting at 1:26??  Nice work!!  I knew I knew you from somewhere!!!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-kzviMGhRk
Smile

Edward Vinatea wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 17:36

Jim Williams wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 12:05


Still, he has his studio and records constantly. Dave says he still gets together and records with friends for FUN only. He said he only does it for himself, not the fans or public. The tracks are to never be released except to those close friends and the participants.


Very interesting story, Jim. Who knows what the future brings and what the shape of the music industry will be. However, Dave's pursuit of 'creative freedom' with all his friends today may have built a foundation for a big copyright dispute among all future assignees tomorrow.

FWIW and YMMV,

Edward

EDIT: Obviously, if nothing is copyrighted then it's up for grabs.



Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Edward Vinatea on January 07, 2011, 12:20:36 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 22:49

Hey edward-  Are you the guy in this video starting at 1:26??  Nice work!!  I knew I knew you from somewhere!!!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-kzviMGhRk
Smile

Edward Vinatea wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 17:36

Jim Williams wrote on Thu, 06 January 2011 12:05


Still, he has his studio and records constantly. Dave says he still gets together and records with friends for FUN only. He said he only does it for himself, not the fans or public. The tracks are to never be released except to those close friends and the participants.


Very interesting story, Jim. Who knows what the future brings and what the shape of the music industry will be. However, Dave's pursuit of 'creative freedom' with all his friends today may have built a foundation for a big copyright dispute among all future assignees tomorrow.

FWIW and YMMV,

Edward

EDIT: Obviously, if nothing is copyrighted then it's up for grabs.






Laughing seriously out loud.

Edward.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: MagnetoSound on January 07, 2011, 06:50:10 am
QUEEF BAG wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 00:08

zappa had some thoughts

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KZazEM8cgt0




Such an insightful guy, a real shame he's no longer with us.


Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Silvertone on January 07, 2011, 08:19:48 am
One of my long term clients Sean Rowe just got signed to Epitah/Anti Records. They contacted me to generate new masters for Europe and Japan.  In talking with the A&R guy who signed Sean it seems that the Anti label has a pretty good model for the independent artist. They pretty much give the artist the right to put out whatever they want... however, you as the artist pay for all production cost and if they like what you do, then it goes out.

Sean had his album done and out on his own label for about 6 months (btw, this is his 7th album I mastered, so don't think this is his lucky break out of the gate).  This actually gave me some hope that good music is still being signed.

In talking with Sean I was curious as to what the label is offering in return.  Did they buy the record out right (like the Jazz and Classical albums we would cut in the 80's and sell to the labels for 20 or 30K when done)?  Did they pay for the recording cost he had incurred on the album?  Any tour money? Any advance,  etc?   Nope, none of that... the only thing they gave him was world wide distribution and a means to collect monies from any albums sold world wide.  That's it. So there you have it... what a deal.  But guess what, Sean is happy (so far), he has control still of his vision and the record company can support sales for him.  

Since then I've struck up a rapport with the Epitaph A&R guy and he has asked me to send other acts for consideration.  I told him I always thought it was funny that A&R guys didn't pick the brains of the mastering engineers.  I mean after all we hear such a wide variety of music from so many different genres and really hear the progress of some artist as we do multiple albums over the years. I know of at least a dozen acts that should be signed today and if I had the money and energy anymore I'd sign them myself... but I don't. He actually agreed and thought it was great that I would be willing to spend the time to send him some acts to consider.

I now have 3 different A&R guys I can send material to.  I don't take advantage of this and will only send acts that I believe in... "cream of the crop" type stuff.  I really think this model should catch on since we (mastering engineers) are the first bastion of the public that gets to hear all this new music. We are exposed to so much variety, of such varying productions and talent we can hear "what stands above the rest" right away.

Anyway I'd been thinking of this for a while and about a year ago started asking the labels I'm dealing with what they thought... guess what?  They like it as well... at least the ones I've approached anyway.

Thoughts?
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: pete andrews on January 07, 2011, 09:24:14 am
Quote:

...I always thought it was funny that A&R guys didn't pick the brains of the mastering engineers. I mean after all we hear such a wide variety of music from so many different genres and really hear the progress of some artist as we do multiple albums over the years.


this is a good point!
club and bar owners would also be worthwhile resources.

-pete
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 07, 2011, 07:40:00 pm
I just spoke to a promoter friend last night, and he was telling me what some of these idiot ITB laptop assholes are getting to just play their m-audio BS at events now.  Were talking 20 grand a pop, 5 shows a week!!   I seriously dont think I have ever been more pissed off in my entire life, I know them personally and know these fuckers dont even know what a neve preamp is or does!  I'm sitting here trying to do real stuff with real gear(while being broke as shit and scared  shitless), these guys are making serious money off a god damn laptop,behringer midi controllers, and dog shit music!!  

I just want to wake up and hope this is all a dream!!

Now I know how you guys really feel!!!
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 07, 2011, 07:48:00 pm
This guy right here!!!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JRftXCiqfQ8


what a world when this crap is going big!!!!
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: el duderino on January 08, 2011, 12:50:28 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 19:40

I seriously dont think I have ever been more pissed off in my entire life, I know them personally and know these fuckers dont even know what a neve preamp is or does!  


i realize this is an engineering forum and we are all striving for sonic nirvana, but at the end of the day it doesn't matter. only good songs do.

do you like louie louie? cuz i do.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 08, 2011, 05:27:02 am
I respect and understand your opinion- but no.  Like JJ blair says, "this shit is a science"!!!!

cheers

el duderino wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 21:50

Bubba Kron wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 19:40

I seriously dont think I have ever been more pissed off in my entire life, I know them personally and know these fuckers dont even know what a neve preamp is or does!  


i realize this is an engineering forum and we are all striving for sonic nirvana, but at the end of the day it doesn't matter. only good songs do.

do you like louie louie? cuz i do.


Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: MagnetoSound on January 08, 2011, 06:50:21 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Sat, 08 January 2011 00:48

This guy right here!!!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JRftXCiqfQ8


what a world when this crap is going big!!!!




Sh*t! Twenty grand a night?? That sounds like one of Ross Geller's college tunes!


Cir-cu-lar time ... time ... time ...


Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Edward Vinatea on January 08, 2011, 07:07:51 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 19:48

This guy right here!!!  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JRftXCiqfQ8


what a world when this crap is going big!!!!


How does music like that, posted in less than a year, get over two and a half million views?

Is there some kind of a program one pays to YouTube for views? Is this the result of that?

Edward
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Fletcher on January 08, 2011, 10:43:34 am
Silvertone wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 08:19

In talking with the A&R guy who signed Sean it seems that the Anti label has a pretty good model for the independent artist. They pretty much give the artist the right to put out whatever they want... however, you as the artist pay for all production cost and if they like what you do, then it goes out.


That's called a "press and distribute" deal... where a traditional "record deal" includes not only a production advance, but promotion of the product.  P&D's are fine if you have / can build an audience... if you can't then there is no reason to give up the 40-50% of resale money and do "self distribution" off iTunes, Napster, Rapsody, Amazon, etc.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: mgod on January 08, 2011, 12:05:51 pm
That's a dubious assertion in itself.

But if by science you and he mean the study of advertising, marketing and the manipulation of popular perception, sure, why not?

Bubba Kron wrote on Sat, 08 January 2011 02:27

I respect and understand your opinion- but no.  Like JJ blair says, "this shit is a science"!!!!

cheers

el duderino wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 21:50

Bubba Kron wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 19:40

I seriously dont think I have ever been more pissed off in my entire life, I know them personally and know these fuckers dont even know what a neve preamp is or does!  


i realize this is an engineering forum and we are all striving for sonic nirvana, but at the end of the day it doesn't matter. only good songs do.

do you like louie louie? cuz i do.




Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: el duderino on January 09, 2011, 03:29:47 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Sat, 08 January 2011 05:27

I respect and understand your opinion- but no.  Like JJ blair says, "this shit is a science"!!!!

cheers

el duderino wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 21:50

Bubba Kron wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 19:40

I seriously dont think I have ever been more pissed off in my entire life, I know them personally and know these fuckers dont even know what a neve preamp is or does!  


i realize this is an engineering forum and we are all striving for sonic nirvana, but at the end of the day it doesn't matter. only good songs do.

do you like louie louie? cuz i do.





as much as i respect j.j. and that quote, i can honestly say i've NEVER bought an album solely because it sounds good. its the songs.

we can all consider certain music "crap", but if you have  the numbers behind you it doesn't matter. ever. if you don't judge sales as a measure of success we're all fucked.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: mgod on January 09, 2011, 11:22:19 am
There goes John Lennon's solo career.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 09, 2011, 02:30:23 pm
So your saying a Mcdonalds Cheeseburger is wayyy better than a Rib Eye because of sales numbers?   Which choice of those two are healthier?   One requires huge signs with big Graphics and Marketing Brain washing tactics since our most vulnerable young ages, the latter has been holding it down for thousands of years with no hype necissary.

I do realize that techno DJ's get big live payments because they are providing a service for a Massive dance party, but that does not mean those people would not choose that stuff if they REALLY had a choice!!!   I guess postering dictates what gets out there more than quality of music, but I'm sure its always been that way to some degree- but not the extremes of today!!!!!!!

el duderino wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 00:29

Bubba Kron wrote on Sat, 08 January 2011 05:27

I respect and understand your opinion- but no.  Like JJ blair says, "this shit is a science"!!!!

cheers

el duderino wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 21:50

Bubba Kron wrote on Fri, 07 January 2011 19:40

I seriously dont think I have ever been more pissed off in my entire life, I know them personally and know these fuckers dont even know what a neve preamp is or does!  


i realize this is an engineering forum and we are all striving for sonic nirvana, but at the end of the day it doesn't matter. only good songs do.

do you like louie louie? cuz i do.





as much as i respect j.j. and that quote, i can honestly say i've NEVER bought an album solely because it sounds good. its the songs.

we can all consider certain music "crap", but if you have  the numbers behind you it doesn't matter. ever. if you don't judge sales as a measure of success we're all fucked.

Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: wwittman on January 09, 2011, 11:36:34 pm
mgod wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 11:22

There goes John Lennon's solo career.



I"d suspect most of or all of John's solo records sold at least in the hundeds of thousands
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: el duderino on January 10, 2011, 02:06:16 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 14:30

So your saying a Mcdonalds Cheeseburger is wayyy better than a Rib Eye because of sales numbers?   Which choice of those two are healthier?   One requires huge signs with big Graphics and Marketing Brain washing tactics since our most vulnerable young ages, the latter has been holding it down for thousands of years with no hype necissary.

I do realize that techno DJ's get big live payments because they are providing a service for a Massive dance party, but that does not mean those people would not choose that stuff if they REALLY had a choice!!!





no, im talking about sales numbers being used as a measure of success. that doesn't mean its better, it means it's successful because a large number of people like it.

you think you'd find rib eye's in every grocery if total rib eye sales in the usa were 1,000 for the year? I don't.

the people paying money for a ticket to a massive dance party couldn't have chosen to not go? that sounds like a choice to me.

we're all free to like or dislike whatever music or food we want to, but that doesn't change measurements of success.




Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 10, 2011, 02:28:59 am
4/5 of those people would still be at those raves even if they had never heard of the top act!!   You also have to realize that these guys played "other" peoples music out of Pioneer cdj's for 10 years growing their popularity before doing their own stuff.

You do make a good point that if it sucks so bad, then why I dont I just out do him- I cant argue there and I'm gonna give my best shot( not that our styles are any way similar).    

TO ALL THE PEOPLE SAYING THERE IS STILL GOOD MUSIC TODAY, SHOW ME JUST 1 ACT ARTISTICALLY ON PAR WITH FLOYD/ZEP/MARLEY/DOORS/STAN GUETZ ETC ETC............

I bet you cant name one post 1998!!!  why?  cause people use music to sell other shit now.  And if they had organic rib eyes in drive thrus for 2.99, people would never touch a 99 cent cheeseburger again.  But theres the catch, in music it all cost the same price to the consumer and is readily available at all times!

I seriously think 2012 is about shutting down such crazy exploitive things, i hope aliens are coming to help(not kill us- but whatever)-but thats a whole different thread.

Like that guy who made the movie about Mcdonalds, that food is designed by scientists to give you massive cravings and change your system into wanting it more/again!!   That Justin Bieber shit will stick in your head for 2 weeks, god knows what/how they are doing that- but I would not be surprised if subliminal messaging was used in some way.   A parent can not compete with that influence with just simple words!!!!

These days its about making money at any cost, and these rich bastards go home and are not even happy after causing such mental/physical destruction anyways, end up having their kids hate them and take prozac!!  Yay, welcome to the Matrix!!!!!

Cheers

el duderino wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 23:06

Bubba Kron wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 14:30

So your saying a Mcdonalds Cheeseburger is wayyy better than a Rib Eye because of sales numbers?   Which choice of those two are healthier?   One requires huge signs with big Graphics and Marketing Brain washing tactics since our most vulnerable young ages, the latter has been holding it down for thousands of years with no hype necissary.

I do realize that techno DJ's get big live payments because they are providing a service for a Massive dance party, but that does not mean those people would not choose that stuff if they REALLY had a choice!!!





no, im talking about sales numbers being used as a measure of success. that doesn't mean its better, it means it's successful because a large number of people like it.

you think you'd find rib eye's in every grocery if total rib eye sales in the usa were 1,000 for the year? I don't.

the people paying money for a ticket to a massive dance party couldn't have chosen to not go? that sounds like a choice to me.

we're all free to like or dislike whatever music or food we want to, but that doesn't change measurements of success.






Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: jrmintz on January 10, 2011, 10:00:43 am
Bubba Kron wrote on Mon, 10 January 2011 02:28


TO ALL THE PEOPLE SAYING THERE IS STILL GOOD MUSIC TODAY, SHOW ME JUST 1 ACT ARTISTICALLY ON PAR WITH FLOYD/ZEP/MARLEY/DOORS/STAN GUETZ ETC ETC............




Isn't that a little like saying there'll never be a car as good as my '68 VW or my '57 Chevy? True or not, the world has moved on. There's a vibrant young jazz scene in New York, and great new artists everywhere. But, like organic food, you can't look for it in mainstream outlets.

Good and successful have never meant the same thing.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Edward Vinatea on January 10, 2011, 01:05:33 pm
jrmintz wrote on Mon, 10 January 2011 10:00


Good and successful have never meant the same thing.


+1.

Amen to that.

Edward
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: el duderino on January 10, 2011, 01:40:22 pm
Bubba Kron wrote on Mon, 10 January 2011 02:28

4/5 of those people would still be at those raves even if they had never heard of the top act!!   You also have to realize that these guys played "other" peoples music out of Pioneer cdj's for 10 years growing their popularity before doing their own stuff.


so people choose to go to raves despite not knowing the headliner. I go to clubs to see bands all the time where that is the case.

Quote:

You do make a good point that if it sucks so bad, then why I dont I just out do him- I cant argue there and I'm gonna give my best shot( not that our styles are any way similar).


thanks, and i sincerely hope you are successful at it.    

Quote:

TO ALL THE PEOPLE SAYING THERE IS STILL GOOD MUSIC TODAY, SHOW ME JUST 1 ACT ARTISTICALLY ON PAR WITH FLOYD/ZEP/MARLEY/DOORS/STAN GUETZ ETC ETC............

I bet you cant name one post 1998!!!


how about radiohead?

it doesn't really matter if you agree because it's all subjective. some people don't like any of those bands named. I'm not one of them, but one man's trash is another man's treasure.

is Thriller a better record than Back In Black? I don't know and don't care (i like both), but I DO know Back In Black sold more.

 
Quote:

why?  cause people use music to sell other shit now.  And if they had organic rib eyes in drive thrus for 2.99, people would never touch a 99 cent cheeseburger again.  But theres the catch, in music it all cost the same price to the consumer and is readily available at all times!


if music is the same price to the consumer and always available, how can it be compared to pieces of meat not readily available at all times and sold at different prices?

music has always been used to sell things. 70 years ago you could listen to Colgate variety hours on the radio with musicians performing and also advertising for colgate products during the show. There were many others just like it.

Quote:



That Justin Bieber shit will stick in your head for 2 weeks, god knows what/how they are doing that- but I would not be surprised if subliminal messaging was used in some way.   A parent can not compete with that influence with just simple words!!!!


considering the target audience for beiber i'd have to say a parents simple words run into problems with anyone that age. i don't think there's anything subliminal going on. there IS alot of money being spent on people with serious track records though.

the list of people credited as writers on beiber's stuff is lengthy and includes people who've worked with many successful artists or are successful artists themselves. Everyone from the singer of the cardigans to Usher is on there.




Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: kats on January 10, 2011, 09:13:50 pm
Fletcher wrote on Tue, 04 January 2011 22:33

.

He's ready to either quit or blow his brains out [hope he does the former rather than the latter... but it is what it is].
.


Well he might as well quit now while he is ahead. The axe is coming down so heavy in the next month or two, there will be very few jobs like this left anyhow, anywhere...

Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Halfway Competent on January 11, 2011, 12:47:55 pm
Bubba Kron wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 23:28

   

TO ALL THE PEOPLE SAYING THERE IS STILL GOOD MUSIC TODAY, SHOW ME JUST 1 ACT ARTISTICALLY ON PAR WITH FLOYD/ZEP/MARLEY/DOORS/STAN GUETZ ETC ETC............




Green Day.  American Idiot and 21st Century Breakdown are both great albums.  

Zep?  Are you kidding me?  The singer sounds drunk and barely coherent in "No Quarter" (I like Maktub's cover of that song much better).  Stairway to Heaven is pretty OK, but as far as anthemic rock goes, I like Queensryche's "Silent Lucidity" better.

But you're only naming rock legends.  What about other genres?  Have a listen to Lizz Wright (jazz/soul).  Amazing singer, very expressive.  Great songwriting, too.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 11, 2011, 01:07:02 pm
Jon Bonham is laying a whoopie cushion on your seat in heaven as we speak!! Wink  Since Ive been loving you?  Over the hills and far away? ramble on?  sweet jesus you cant tell me your mind is bored during those tracks!!!!

BJ armstrong can only dream of hitting 1/5 the notes plant could!!

to each his own I guess!!  Stan Guetz is no rock legend!! Ill check out Liz W, thanks!!

cheers


Halfway Competent wrote on Tue, 11 January 2011 09:47

Bubba Kron wrote on Sun, 09 January 2011 23:28

   

TO ALL THE PEOPLE SAYING THERE IS STILL GOOD MUSIC TODAY, SHOW ME JUST 1 ACT ARTISTICALLY ON PAR WITH FLOYD/ZEP/MARLEY/DOORS/STAN GUETZ ETC ETC............




Green Day.  American Idiot and 21st Century Breakdown are both great albums.  

Zep?  Are you kidding me?  The singer sounds drunk and barely coherent in "No Quarter" (I like Maktub's cover of that song much better).  Stairway to Heaven is pretty OK, but as far as anthemic rock goes, I like Queensryche's "Silent Lucidity" better.

But you're only naming rock legends.  What about other genres?  Have a listen to Lizz Wright (jazz/soul).  Amazing singer, very expressive.  Great songwriting, too.

Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: wwittman on January 15, 2011, 09:10:42 pm
Green Day broke about 1990

Could they do it today?
I doubt it
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: NelsonL on January 16, 2011, 08:52:10 am
wwittman wrote on Sat, 15 January 2011 18:10

Green Day broke about 1990

Could they do it today?
I doubt it


More like 1994, I'd say.

This has proven interesting to me in that, the examples keep turning out to be bands that are firmly in the pre-1998 category, including Radiohead and Green Day.

Although not rock, for me, Gillian Welch belongs in the timeless and transcendent category that (I think) Bubba is talking about. But again, her first release is pre-1998, so I'm stumped.
Title: Re: ...so I have a friend who is A&R with a major label...
Post by: Bubba#$%Kron on January 16, 2011, 09:55:48 am
I love Gillian welch!!!