Tuesday, July 20, 2010


That's right, word is Pomplamoose is currently in bidding wars with multiple major labels right now.

This is a huge thing, as this is not just some talent scout coming in and saying, oh that kid can sing, I bet with the right development they will do great things. This is an example of an artist achieving success without the labels and forcing their foot into the door. No other way to look at it.

I eagerly await hearing the Moose in a soundtrack soon.

A great day for independent music.
A great day for the filter.
A great day for unknown bands starting from scratch, doing what they love.

Now get those songs finished, fire up those cameras, and believe!


Friday, July 16, 2010

Warped Tour a great idea with room for improvement

Went to the Scranton PA "festival" yesterday.

I'm 37, and it's a lot of good stuff, albeit, obviously not my scene. I spoke with some folks in the artist booths, and saw portions of near 30 acts. Did a lot of observing.

The potential is there. A festival of music. Each artist having their own booth for connection with fans. Music flowing from multiple stages all day long. A cooperative, supporting effort among the bands. Security was great. All american rejects had endless crowd surf action that they easily kept up with, and a girl passed out from dehydration in front of me in line (i helped her to a shady seat) and security was there in less than 60 seconds, with medical staff there 2 minutes later.

Many CDs being sold though, for 5.00, with some being 2.00 (that came with a story about "needing your help" ), and one mp3 cd that had 75 tracks on it for 5.00. (didn't see a single one of them being sold). It cost me 9.00 for my Gyro, and 9.00 for a later sausage sub. My lemonades were 5.00. Water was 4.00. Flyers littered the entire place to the point of stupidity. (passed out to everyone and immediately thrown down) Those I spoke with said without a doubt sales are down, and I know the tour itself is down an average of 8-10% this year in various markets (NPR column) Add to that the fact that the tickets were 30.00, and there was I believe over 50 bands.

A couple of times, artists asked crowds directly.

"who here has heard us before?"
to a rousing , "RAHHHHHH"

and then
"who here has bought our cd?"
to a paltry few raising their hands

my conclusion

the industry is still in very big trouble
people will spend 5.00 on lemonade quicker than they will on a cd
that front man for the all american rejects is one cool, crowd owning cat.
the word motherfu#%er is apparently required at some point in every sentence used by any and nearly every front man.
i'm more likely in the market for the girls mother now, than the girl :(

all i can think of is "love fest"

similar setup, but with mellow fare in a field instead of a venue.

the priority being on attracting decent folks and specifically TRYING to keep the price as low as possible.

your concessions could be all legit, but independents who paid a small fee to set up their booth, so there could be a big variety and the price would be reasonable.

security would be very important, but with the bands you could easily dictate the percentage of hooligans you had to weed out.

every artist could have a booth, that's the best part of the warped tour.

it would be in a grassy field, picnic style, with actual restrooms built into trailers that could be easily parked wherever.

yeah, they were foolish to think they could pull off a second woodstock with limp bizkit type music at it's core.

instead of hiring some big names to lure folks in and then treating the audience like cattle, they could rethink the process and sell the audience on the overall experience. imagine that, providing an experience that people would enjoy and making money in the process. are we so far gone as to not be able to do that.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Effective Piracy Controls? Think of Speed Traps

When will the piracy end? It never will.

When will it become acceptable? When it's pursued and enforced in a reasonable, sensible and sustainable way.

Compare speeding to piracy and you have some good parallels.

The majority of drivers have sped at some time or another.

A few drivers will never speed because they just won't do it. It's wrong.

Without any traffic enforcement, we would have a uncontrollable death trap of a road system.

The enforcement doesn't stop speeding, but just minimizes it to a reasonable level. Penalties are affordable, by anyone who can afford to drive.

It keeps most people in line. They go a tiny bit over the speed limit and they know they are OK. They know that it is foolish to run down the highway at 100 because they would face a heavier penalty in the chance they were caught.

The die hard speeders are going to do it anyway, risks be damned. They are the minority.

The highways are (relatively) safe.

The vast majority arrive at their destination each and every time they go somewhere.

The money collected from the speeders pays for not just the police, but usually for other mischief as well.

Piracy ends with several real, tangible cases of GD enforcement. not legal cases that go nowhere, and that only encourage the opponent.

i think they were on the right track when they started going after the major single person offenders. not 6 million dollar lawsuits to women who weren't worth 30k, but real enforceable penalties for individuals. Like some 30 day jail sentences with some sensible 10k max fines. really foul up a persons life, and make it seem like a real problem to get caught. again, not make a legal travesty case like the woman who got sued for millions who obviously couldn't afford to pay a dime of it. - it's not that she wasn't responsible, but the industry legals are morons to chose making someone a martyr and push forward a judgment that will result in no actual money coming in, and make the general public think that the music industry was actually crazier than they all had earlier thought.

so yeah, pick out 100 top individuals, develop a track record over a month or two, then launch a publicized campaign and get some real penalties enforced. the moment the general public starts seeing ACTUAL enforcement, instead of all this overly litigious and meaningless hooptydo, then there will be a vast reduction in the mainstream file sharing actions that "everyone" is participating in. then there will just be the minority of rebels, who would be doing it anyway.

not to mention, you have to figure they already have a wicked bunch of lawyers and consultants on retainer, accomplishing naught. if they could start to collect even some thousands from some top violators, then there would be SOMETHING coming in as a result of there actions, and if it started out smaller they wouldn't piss off the general public any further with the whole "bigshot record companies trying to squeeze ridiculous megabucks out of normal schmoes" perceptions.

But there has to be something.
It has to be perceived as reasonable to the public.
It has to be consistently applied.

I can think of no greater analogy than speeding as a model for policing this system.

Too bad they aren't looking for a project manager with a real plan of attack that would actually make sense. ha!

And I agree with psalad, this has been off the chain since they applied windows GUI to the existing MIRC technology (sorry, uh, napster). They need to get some tangible laws written that don't get hung up on particular lines of code, but rather just state it outright like it needs to be stated.

and like they do with private property in New York, they say if you own land you need to put up signs showing it is "posted" and "no trespassing", putting the burden on the land owner.

in montana, they just say if you go off the damn highway onto someone's land, you are responsible to get their permission first or otherwise you are trespassing, putting the burden where it belongs

"engaged in any action that allowed for any file or portion of a file to be stored for any length of time on a computer they were using, and which was named in any way to reflect it would be reasonable to assume that it was a popular, and / or commercial release which would by any and all means suggest it would not be available for free."

"to download a file of any music using the internet, it must be accompanied by a digital certificate or digital receipt of sale, or must be listed with certificate as public domain. otherwise, you are liable"

I'm no lawyer (thank god) but a lawyer's version of that would cover napsters, newsgroups, and torrents, no?

Friday, April 2, 2010

On The Rise! (YouTube talk)

With all original material, a recognized good idea, and support of the community, 1000 subscribers and the YouTube partnership program is the goal for now, at least on YouTube. Not as a way to make money, but in all honesty as a way to provide added funding to take on more contests. I think this is the future of the music business, even among "made" artists. Each contest requires it's own time to sort out guidelines, advertise, sort out votes, listen, feature, assist new artists with production, master tracks as needed, organize, upload, etc. This all requires funds and time. Time in the future will be beyond the scope of what one person can do, and will require someone to get paid for it. So yeah, I am still a ways off from a profit here, and I'm fine with that for now.

Secondly, is the factor of legitimacy. Serious sponsorships are in the works, and the details of which, will be disclosed shortly. Those will help cement us as a legitimate label. The YouTube partnership is just a small facet of that legitimacy. The big goals obviously, are to get artists on the label into major soundtracks, or major sales numbers. That is the main objective at the end of the day. All the rest is just positioning to assist that end.

So 1000 subscribers. The arbitrary metric YouTube has set as a minimum, outside of a cash investment, to become a YouTube partner.

If I wasn't happy with making the 300 subscribers in less than 4 months.

And if I still wasn't happy making 150 of those subscribers in just the month of March.

I was pretty delighted yesterday April 1 to have made 60 subscribers in that day. (no foolin')

Yes, I always knew that the idea was solid, and that sooner or later things would pick up to the level that people would have to pay attention. I think it's finally coming into it's own.

This is getting to be a time management lesson, the likes of which I have never known. The twist is going to be getting investors on board and have the machine refined, and manned in time to deal with the certain climb that's coming. 250 messages in one day is manageable for now, but that's only going to go up. It will eventually become unmanageable, and I will have to admit that I need help to get it all done.

And to think that the contest is just phase one in a much bigger overall scheme.

I am ready.

Bring it.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Enough Time?

So I'm learning quickly that although I have the greatest of intentions, there is only so much one person can do really. And more importantly, only so much one person can do effectively.

The contest is growing at a measurable level. Maintaining that is my main goal, but I'm also launching a forum and an artist login in March, as well as adding 2 additional contests to the original. And that's just the tip of the idea iceberg.

A Mystonic Radio?
Video streaming?
Collective Tour and Sales Tracking?

It really comes down to what I'm currently capable of VS what yields the most benefit to the group as a whole. I'm certain that with the investment coming later this year, there will be folks hired on to do what needs to be done to fill the voids and take us to the next rung or 3 or 4, but for now I'm steadily approaching my limits. This is in no way a crying, or whining either. I love it still, and am very passionate about the whole program, and what is coming. I just regret that I'm not able to do more.

So soon I will start trying to recruit assistance from the masses.

What are you good at?


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The mission.

I am merely a commission based employee for those on the label. Any record label is merely that. How many though look at it the other way around? I provide a service, and get paid on the basis of how well I provide it.

That being said, I would think perhaps artists should hire as many "employees" as they can. If their product is good, they should get it to as many sales people / record labels as they can. Why not? Why can't the system work that way? Because the big labels don't want anyone else having access to their artists. Well why is that? Accountability to the artist. Another reason is the fact that these relationships are based around the old system, where the artist gets a paltry amount in comparison to the label/publisher. That whole "artists work for the label" mentality. Bullocks.

The Mystonic label has just started out, but growing at our current rate we will be representing over 250 artists by the end of 2010, and over 1000 by the end of 2011. Selling music at rates other labels can't imagine - rates that other labels couldn't financially pull off. And the recruitment of great music and musicians is just the beginning of a multi-tiered business plan. Actually - 1000 artists and the amount of music that those artists will bring to the table is only a quarter of what Mystonic Records has planned.

We, as a group of musicians and music lovers, are going to change the music process, from creation, to sharing, to sales & distribution, to streaming & broadcast.

We are going to shake this industry.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

American Idol is the devil

American Idol shows us clearly what is wrong with the music industry today, and yet they package it so well, and distract us with entertainment, so we miss it.

Yes the show is about the "making" of it as an artist. But make no mistake, for the artist it's like a giant bait and switch. I mean, getting picked out of millions in a grueling process, and have more public support than anyone else, it must feel like conquering the world. Then they go into one of the top record studios (the ultimate goal for any musician, yes?) You would think.

But given probably one of the most well equipped studios on earth, and all the public support one could imagine. (i mean you don't get a better head start, publicity wise, do you?) Given that you have the guidance of a whole team of coaches, legal experts, great producers (you get the idea). All that and they can't reliably put out an album worth buying. Rolling Stone considered Adam Lambert's album a flop. Usually someone in the field of non-winners beats the winner in sales.

Well for those of you out there who are not musicians, you need to know one thing. Creation can never be counted on. No one can ALWAYS draw from the well and come up with a full bucket. The greats can do it better and more often, but not always.

That's why Mystonic is pushing individual songs. Think about it. Can anyone remember any of the American Idol finale songs being even decent, besides the (slightly cheesy, but we let it slide because we liked Kelly) "a moment like this". That song last year was an embarrassment.... to even listen to.

I bet they would have a hit record if they took one of this month's winning entries, and paid the artist accordingly. But that's how the music industry is. Promotion of one representative to go up the hill for us and draw from the well.

I say let everyone with a pail, or a cup, or a spoon who wants to go up the hill to the well. If you are able to get more water out that day, I will gladly give you the biggest pail I can muster. Then tomorrow I'll be making that pail available to the next guy. Oh and don't you deserve the biggest sip of that water since you drew it out?

Makes sense to me.