Tag Archives: new music models

Reality Sandwich: Transcending Possessiveness in Love and Music

Another Reality Sandwich article.

In the article, the author explores the relationship between ‘free love’ and ‘free music’ and introduces us to this business model:

When I imagine the future of artist-label relationship, the first company that comes to mind is Magnatune, out of Berkeley, California. Flying the motto, “We are not evil,” Magnatune signs nonexclusive distribution agreements with its artists – and allows customers to pay what they think the music is worth, rather than arbitrarily assigning a market price. The result is that they have two charts: the best-selling music, and the music that has sold for the most money. For people who trust the voice of the crowd, the most valuable music is sifted into visibility – motivating artists to craft something evocative and enduring. What’s more, Magnatune offers three free copies of each download to all of its buyers:

“While other record labels are busy suing their customers for introducing their friends to great music… At Magnatune, we want you to copy our music for your friends.”

At the very root, possessiveness is what is undoing most of the traditional leaders in the community, and we’re once again seeing how the music industry is the classic ‘canary in a coalmine’ as it relates to how the industry has died and how it can be built up again.