Music videos are so 80s/90s, right? They belong with the era when MTV screened wall-to-wall vids instead of 'reality' TV? Try telling that to the millions who bought Gangnam Style; were they really simply loving the music? 1.6bn (and still climbing) have viewed the video on YT, not to mention the many re-makes (school eg, eg2), viral ads + celeb link-ups (even political protest in Seoul) - and it doesn't matter how legit it is, this nightmare for daydream Beliebers is making a lot of money, even from the parodies + dislikes. All this for a simple dance track that wouldn't have sounded out of place in 1990 ... but had a fun vid. This meme itself was soon displaced by the Harlem Shake. Music vids even cause diseases it seems!
This blog explores every aspect of this most postmodern of media formats, including other print-based promo tools used by the industry, its fast-changing nature, + how fans/audiences create/interact. Posts are primarily written with Media students/educators in mind. Please acknowledge the blog author if using any resources from this blog - Mr Dave Burrowes

Thursday, 21 May 2015

INDUSTRY WEB 2.0 Conglomerates sued over fees for 'broken' downloads

Great illustration over the downsides of web 2.0 and how the likes of John McMuria may be right in arguing that the brave digital new world is simply a slightly reconstituted lineup of giant conglomerates, not the newly democratic, level playing field technotopians see it as.

Universal is in the frame here, but their practices are fairly standard for the record industry.

Article link below the line.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

THEORY Andrew Keen arch-critic of web 2.0

It might be more accurate by now to use web 3.0, but either way Keen is not keen on the workings of the new media, and how the social media giants are transforming wider societal and democratic values as users get accustomed to surrendering privacy, to arguably vacuous virtual interaction, and so forth.

I'll return to Keen; I was sure I had already blogged on him. He's a very useful (highly readable!) sceptic of the wonders of our new interconnected age. Some of his work is available free on Kindle (not sure about other e-readers), and the rest is fairly cheap. I've read most of it, and while it is polemical (he has a point or argument to get across), it was no chore - a genuinely entertaining read!

I'll add more later - but you can always Google 'Andrew Keen'...

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

TECH TIP: Using ViewSync to compare cuts

Thanks to Conal Walsh for this, I'd never heard of ViewSync, a nifty website, designed with gamers in mind, which enables  you to view 2 or more cuts side by side. A nice example of convergence - the sort of high-tech gadgetry that you might associate with the likes of Formula One is now in the hands of everyone. When you're trying to pinpoint the changes made step by step, and also as a tool for some targeted audience feedback (generate different clips of the same short sequence with different editing styles for example), this is a great option.
Conal's ViewSync for nine iterations of the Bad Romance video

Friday, 8 May 2015

WEB 2.0 KICKSTARTER De La Soul Stakes is High ... $600k and rising

News that De La Soul, daisy age hip hoppers (currently on UK tour I see), have raised the 2nd highest figure ever by musicians on KickStarter. At over $600k its still only half of the highest ever ($1.2m), but unlikely to be topped anytime soon.

(Amanda Palmer’s controversial “loss leader” $1.2 million campaign still holds the #1 spot, and it’s hard to imagine anything topping that, especially given this New York Times piece about how Kickstarter donations are not safe investments.) With that money, De La are now free to avoid label concessions in putting together the album, and they tell The New York Times that they plan to use the money on recording the album, as well as on marketing, making videos, and maybe putting together a tour.

INDUSTRY Spotify moving into video?

One of the basic issues you have to address if you're making music videos is the perception that they're so, like, 90s, they're just over aren't they?

Ignoring my painful effort at teen skatz, in the era of UGC, where anyone can have a go at a music video with a phone or tablet, never mind a Mac, does the vid retain real cultural cachet? [zeitgeisty?] Is it still the centrepiece of marketing campaigns?

There's no definite answer ..  but I'd offer yes and no. The phenomenon of Gangnam Style is a YouTube video phenomenon; the cheesiness of the video, not the song, made it huge, and its monetisation was primarily through the billion+ YouTube hits and all those cover videos. No, because for all the hype Wrecking Ball's nude antics got Mikey Cyrus, its just part of a marketing mix that includes snogging Madonna and anything else that makes her Daily Mail clickbait. At that end of the market, as Elberse's case studies of Lady Gaga and Jay Z (yay, clickbait ahoy!) shows, tie-ins and distribution (often linked) are key, but so is audience engagement, some degree of interactivity with a campaign.

The humble QR code would have had Dennis McQuail, or Blumler and Katz, originators of the uses and gratifications theory, nodding to themselves, thinking just how right they were!

Where I've used the INDUSTRY heading, I'm often reflecting, quite indirectly at times, on the position of video in the marketing mix, and this post, marking the news that Spotify is set to (I'll try to update once news is out) move into video in a big way, is no exception.

By the way, given the apparent shocking outcome of the UK general election (voting count continues today), bear in mind the noise the Tories made about censoring and age rating music video, could develop into rather a major story for the music industry and even prosumers such as yourselves...

INDIE RETRO Before blogs there were zines...

Great, in-depth interview with Bruce 'Sub Pop' Pavitt (that's where Nirvana started if you don't know the name).

Simon Reynolds' writing, notably the book Retromania, is a good way of getting a handle on how the music industry and fandom was, back in the day; this interview is a great starter for any such wider reading.

The appeal of retro media and technology, from zines to vinyl, and that ridiculous music movement that insists on using only primitive 80s sequencers, is a marked feature of our postmodern, mashed-up era of pastiche and bricolage. Digitisation has ironically boosted the appeal of analogue technology, at least once it has almost entirely obliterated it from mainstream retailing and usage.

Friday, 1 May 2015

INDUSTRY Oops I Did It a Game: Play Britney!

Yat another way of making up for losses of recorded music revenues: games for mobile platforms...
Hyperlink below the line