Friday, January 17, 2014

guess who's getting ripped off! things got really screwed the music business

Remember way back...I’d say about 1990’s or so when on tv or film the directors would use great songs to highlight a scene?
Well...because the music was being ripped off the internet for nothing...the folks who run the music licensing outfits decided to put a stop to the “unlimited” use of their product.  They went to court...won some ground and raised the price of their musician's goodies to the point that tv and film officials had to re-think what song they might use. Here’s a simple example:
        Roy Orbison’s “Oh Pretty Woman” was used in the Julia Roberts flick of the same name.  But if they were making that movie today the cost of using that piece of music might be they use something else.
The result, of course, is that the very artists that these music licensing outfits say they are trying to protect...are being harmed, at times, financially, not helped. 
        A better example might be the sound track music from the popular tv series “Joan Of Arcadia”.  
        In the original episodes the creator Barbara Hall and her cohorts chose some fine, recognizable songs to use...but when it came time to devise a DVD of those same episodes....most of the music had to be dumped because of the increased licensing fees. So who gets hurt here. The very artists who write and record the songs not used.   
The only plus in all this is some of the songs Hall used for the DVD edition were perhaps better for the scenes and those songs did make some money for the artists who did them...many unknowns were helped out.  But even conceding that...the bottom line here is the creative infringement interference that results.  
So today... you have producers and directors filming with the thought in their head “boy this song would be great here...too bad I can’t use it!”  So they have to search for a cheaper replacement.
I worked in radio playing records in an era when the recording companies were so desperate to get their songs heard they actually paid for airplay time with payola, hookers for DJ’s...drugs...whatever it took.  I got none of that but I did get free Broadway show tickets...8th row center...any time I wanted them.
       And that wasn't a "gift" for playing a certain record 20 times a day.  It was just an acknowledgment for me being what I on the air promoter of  all their records
Now...those same radio stations have to pay,  just to play the records.

       Somewhere along the way...things got really screwed up!

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