Music Business Difficulties

Last week I touched on the major squeeze in the music business, and referred to what Beck thought about this (via Fred Wilson).  I would give the topic a rest for a while, except I just heard on TV, the following quote by Bulent Forta, the head of MUYAP, Turkish Phonographic Industry Society.

"We are looking for a solution where the consumer gets the content for free, but the rights holders get their due compensation."

In effect, he’s calling for music commoditization.  Currently, there’s a campaign in Turkey by Pepsi, where over 1 million are songs are available for free-downloads for Pepsi drinkers.  I think this is bad news for the musician as an artist, and will force a bi-polarization of the music scene.

On one end will be many, fragmented small bands, with their local loyal fans and MySpace page.  On the other, will be the mega bands, which will have to turn into media companies, with multiple offerings – albums, concerts, videos, backstage content, communities, etc.

A critical opportunity emerges here for filtering the crowded end of the spectrum.  That’s why I am very bullish of the filtering models such as Last.fm, Pandora, and even Digg.

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