The music business is a high-risk business. It is driven by profits that are often elusive to the very music artists who generate revenues for record companies and those who work in the various capacities and occupations that comprise and sustain the music industry. The music that we listen to as fans or music lovers is packaged, sold, processed and viewed as “product” by industry professionals.

These professionals, who all serve different functions, are directly or indirectly responsible for the sale of that product or the support of the artist whose talent it embodies. The successful marketing and promotion of music artists and their product enable record companies to supply more products and financially back more music artists.

This is the most important function of a record company, and the greatest benefit of having a record deal to most music artists. Feeding the demand for a music artist, or a particular style of music, motivates record companies to supply more of that type of music, and those types of artists. (Ever wondered why there is so much rap music in the marketplace? Ever wondered why so many female singers look like models now?)

These sales are achieved through creative and consistent marketing efforts by professionals who are dedicated to achieving that end result. These results are greatly enhanced by the various strategic angles that are devised and implemented on all levels and facets of the entertainment industries which overlap with the music industry (Television commercials, guest appearances, live performances, soundtracks, etc.)

Research has concluded, and history will show, that when an entrepreneurial approach is taken by competent professionals who are trying to claim their share in this worldwide 50 billion dollar industry, the prospects of obtaining otherwise elusive profits are increased dramatically. When operating knowledge of the industry is met with ample financial backing, success is almost assured.

The music industry thrives on newness. New artists; new product; new labels, and new venues. They are all an inextricable part of the canvas that dreams and fantasies are painted on. Unfortunately, the magic potion that turns them into reality is money. Most newcomers are high on ambition, and low on finances. Many cling to the mysterious notion that they just simply have to find an investor who they will make rich in exchange for their generosity despite the incredibly high rate of financial failure, which is estimated that only 2 out of 10 CD’s on the market will actually make a profit.

Record labels have long been considered the home of music artists. The relationship they once forged was similar to that of a parent and a child. Now that child has become a rebellious runaway. The abundance of independent labels and independent artists are tangible proof of this phenomenon and new business model.

Fundamentally, some music artists are more educated on the music business, but the intricacies of “major label” success remain hidden in the inner sanctum of corporations who have finely tuned operating systems and an abyss of resources to maintain the status quo.

Financially, the music industry is tainted by perplexing, convoluted, and antiquated accounting practices. Royalty statements tend to be inaccurate and the proficiency in calculating them is often suspect. There are stark discrepancies in the amount of money generated, and the amount of money earned. This is partly due to a host of deductions that music artists are unaware of. Performing live (touring) has been, and still is, the most reliable method of generating income since the inception of the music industry.

For professionals, employment is often hard to come by. The entrepreneur has the upper-hand in terms of making money because they aggressively pursue and/or create income opportunities by providing useful, beneficial, or luxury services to others who will use them to establish, increase, maintain their success, or protect their business interests.All professionals in the music industry are really in the service business, just as all music artists are really in the sales business.

In the music industry, opportunities that are replete with value demonstrated and perceived, obvious and not so obvious, are the ones that are capitalized on by aggressive entrepreneurs, visionaries, middlemen, and newcomers alike. For most, achieving success in the music industry is really no different than achieving success in other industries: it is a result of supplying product for which there is a demand and/or creating a demand for a unique product or service that only you can supply.

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