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

Wednesday, 13 April 2016


See also: INDUSTRY ISSUES SUMMARY Digital streamed past physical in 2015
CIE Evaluation Q3 asks:
How do your products engage with the audience and how would they be distributed as real media products?
As part of your background research you should investigate how the music industry works, considering issues such as those below - a more extensive list of issues can be found in this post:
  • who are the 'big three' (now big two?) of the music industry?
  • what's the difference between Indie and conglomerate or subsidiary (consider vertical and horizontal integration + synergy - terms from AS learning)?
  • how has digitisation impacted ('disrupted') the music industry?
  • has streaming effectively replaced lost revenues from physical media sales for artists and labels?
  • how else are musicians seeking to monetise their work, brand and fanbase?
  • why is vinyl making a comeback, and how wide or narrow a range of artists/genres are publishing in this format? is it just for older, nostalgic audiences (Simon Reynolds: Retromania)? 
  • do you still need a record label/deal? think about Soundcloud, Vimeo, YouTube ... but also how difficult it is to make real money from streaming (Harlem Shake for the opposite!), and Elberse's argument/case studies (Jay-Z and Gaga) in Blockbusters (cheap as an e-book)
  • does the rise of crowdfunding, Kickstarter etc, prove the audience/producer divide is dead?
  • are social media interactions as important as the music itself?
  • where does video fit into this picture? consider convergence and what this means for the increased accessibility of video and the expansion of video production too (you're a part of this), plus UGC such as lyric videos and digipak/CD unwrapping videos
Evaluation Q3 asks:
How do your products engage with the audience and how would they be distributed as real media products?
Focusing mainly on the second part of this, use the following resources to create a post on music video distribution. You should make some reference to recorded (CD) music distribution too, linked to your digipak, and any notes/examples on marketing, social media and audience engagement/interaction will also help.

Interview a record shop owner
International Record Store Day feature
Interview someone (or multiple people/roles) at the record label 
The artist does a promo for record store day, or speaks out about why they're unhappy with YouTube especially...
Band/act's accountant discusses their hits/streams/followers/subscribers data (screenshots!) on any streaming platform they are on (soundcloud, YT, Spotify...). Don't forget that lyric vids etc are still distributing the music

KO's post on BBFC age rating system.

Austerlitz's book is very useful on this too.
eOne - the biggest US Indie distributor.
Beggars - UK's biggest Indie (possibly world's biggest). About link; Wiki.

**Anita Elberse's book: MusiVidz tag; main link**


Don't stick to YouTube, there are many competitors out there.
SymphonicDistribution - an example of a new industry: maximising your online presence, uploading for you onto multiple platforms ... for $75!
VidZoneDigitalMedia - another example.
MusicVideoDistribution - sets you up with 60+ platforms
Arena - a new platform.
17 ways to self-distribute a music video (2013)

Linking to other brands is a smart way many acts are seeking to boost the profile of their video, providing a 24 hour or 1 week exclusive to e-zines, websites, newspaper sites etc. I've blogged on many examples. Try some of the following to identify examples:
Simple 'music video premiere' Google search.
Adjust this for more, eg 'music video video Guardian premiere' (replace the newspaper name with other media sources, eg Blabbermouth, Loudwire, Classic Rock ...

I'll do some retro-tagging to gather most of these into 'distribution', but for now you can try some of these tags but also key word searches using Google's site: search - for example for 'premiere' within my blog
This is a good post to start at, linking several themes.
Product placement.
**Anita Elberse's book: MusiVidz tagmain link**

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