Welcome, and hello

This is awkward. Reeeaal awkward. I have no special plans to introduce this product, and in general, I’m averse to the sort of solipsism that is inherent in maintaining a blog, so here goes…

Pitchfork has an item about The Cure’s Robert Smith being mean to Radiohead in a Music Radar interview for allowing fans to determine what their music was worth with their revolutionary pricing scheme for In Rainbows. Smith says, “the idea that the value is created by the consumer is an idiot plan, it can’t work.”

The ‘fork lays out a couple of other, and decidedly more personal, reasons for the eye-lined one’s sour grapes:

“The barb reminds me of Coachella 2004, when Radiohead and the Cure headlined on Saturday and Sunday, respectively. When Radiohead hit the stage, everyone stayed and crammed. When the Cure hit the stage the next day, many stayed…but many took the chance to leave early, too. (A similar situation could play out this year when the Cure close Coachella after My Bloody Valentine and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs on Sunday.)”

This seems like a fine discussion for professional musicians to have in the face of a crumbling  music industry, albeit one that’s about a year-and-a-half too late.

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3 responses to “Welcome, and hello

  1. Here’s something I’ve never told anyone: I don’t know shit about The Cure. No, seriously. I don’t, and I could give a crap. Same goes for Robert Smith. I’ve heard the hits, I like some of ’em, but for some reason, The Cure never really impressed me or caught my attention. Maybe ‘cuz the hits are all I ever heard. Maybe because none of my friends took up the mission of converting me (and I still maintain that friends who love bands are pretty much the only way music ever spreads in a meaningful way, market-wise or other). I love Radiohead. Love them to a fault. I’m open to somebody telling me that The Cure is as revolutionary and important to rock music as Radiohead is, but I’m not likely to believe them. So yeah, full disclosure.

    In terms of this aging ugly rock star dust up, or whatever it is, I’m feeling like Robert Smith is entirely missing the point about “In Rainbows.” I don’t see that album as a “this is a consumer-empowering new business model that will change the face of music” at all. I think it’s much more of a “making albums for giant record labels is a pain in the ass, we don’t have to do it, and it doesn’t really matter anyway because people who won’t pay won’t pay and people who will pay will pay, so fuck it, we’ll do it ourselves and make twice the money for half the ass-chapping” sort of thing.

    Big labels don’t make money on artists’ recordings any more. Neither do artists. That’s why you see Madonna and Jay-Z getting their checks from Live Nation. The near future of the music market for the artist and the label is in live performance and physical merchandise–two things you can’t yet steal easily on the internet. Radiohead isn’t concerned about whether or not the value of music is decided by the consumer, because like supply and demand and the invisible hand, it’s straight out of fucking Econ 101, a course Robert Smith was probably skipping to practice lipstick application.

  2. Pingback: Robert Smith Has Room in His Mouth « No More Absolutes

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