Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

How Sony BMG Turned Musicians into Bloggers

May 1, 2007

musicianstobloggersHow Sony BMG Turned Musicians into Bloggers

Sony BMG UK introduced a blogging initiative in an effort to dispose of unsolicited physical material being sent to their labels. In partnership with social network destination, Vox.com, the second largest music company in the world is set to jump on the massive blogging trend and encourage fledgling artists to submit their material digitally in a free and open networking environment.

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Chairman of Sony BMG UK Ged Doherty assures the musical public that online interaction between artists and A&R will be the order of the day and will diminish the likelihood of great acts being missed as a result of postal administration.
For those of you who know how hard it is to get your foot in the door of any label, let alone a major, this could be wonderful way to learn about label staff and get them to hear you. Due to the nature of this system, staff will be able to decipher between the good and the bad through public feedback and in an inter-personal environment. I can only imagine that every artist will want to be a part of this and the limited A&R staff will have their work cut out for them.

YouTube clip: Ged Doherty for Sony BMG.

Is there an ulterior motive here? Well, perhaps this opportunity of being heard by the industry leaders is more of a hook to market existing acts on the label as opposed to discovering new ones. As the blog network (www.rcademos.co.uk, www.columbiademos.co.uk and www.gedblog.vox.com) is open to all, and the subscribing artists are unsigned, Ged and his team may not necessarily be the ones signing and, in turn, profiting from their discoveries. Either that or they will need to act very quickly – not a trait generally associated with large corporations.
For any online music platform, getting a major label on board is big beans. Most musicians have websites, MySpace profiles, EPKs etc. in the hope that an A&R person will notice. Many online destinations promise to bridge the gap between artists and labels. Now, the initiative is coming from the labels themselves and exclusively to Vox – wow!
If the other major labels do not sensationalize their own online profiles and A&R prospects, and Ged and his staff discover and develop a star through this, we may find ourselves with the most popular music blog of the decade… but I doubt it. There is a certain lack of charisma about the whole thing. See for yourself in this YouTube clip:

Mike Smith for Columbia Records

– Lior
Originally posted at theplugg.com

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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