For those of you who have not heard, Beyonce just released a new CD album appropriately entitled “Beyonce.” This really shouldn’t be much of a surprise, because professional singers are usually “required” to release music. However, the difference in this case was in “how” the pop diva managed to do it. Without “any” pre-release promotion, she put it on I-tunes, and it broke records in it’s very first 3 days. I believe the numbers were over $617,000 in the United States and over $828,000 internationally. The way it usually works is that most artists “need radio play” to hype their music out there for people to buy it. Rarely do people buy a music product before they even get the chance to “hear it.” Getting radio stations to play it can be a “very costly” measure (even though the stations themselves won’t admit to it). Payola (the practice of paying to have your music played on air) is supposed to be “illegal” (but try getting your songs played on air without it and watch what DOESN’T happen). I found this interesting because instead of paying exorbitant amounts of money to have it played on radio, she opted instead to make videos for “each” song and released them on the internet (which can be done for “free”). I have always told new and upcoming artists that this is the new way to go. Regular radio is struggling right now and they are mostly controlled by the few record labels that are left. These labels “allegedly” pay the stations to play their artists and they also pay them to “not” play anyone else. That is mostly why a lot of new music lacks quality (and a lot of it sounds the same as well). Beyonce’s move was good for her (of course) but it also may be a great game changer for the industry. NOW because of the fanfare surrounding the release more people will want to check out her music, and instead of waiting to hear it on radio they can just go online and not only “hear” it but they can actually “see” it as well (with the videos for each song). If you are an aspiring artist, I hope you take heed to what just happened. Beyonce not only “made” a lot of money with her release, but she also “saved” a lot of money without having to pay the radio stations. That… is “major”… However, not EVERYONE is ecstatic with this news. Target has said that it refuses to sell the CD because it was available “digitally” before it was available “physically.” If I were Target, I would pay good attention to what happened with Sam Goody’s and Tower Records. BOTH of these music selling giants went out of business because they were selling CD’s in an industry where digital downloads became the new wave of purchasing new music. If Beyonce’s music is selling and people are willing to buy it, what difference would it make WHO has it first? I would like to congratulate Beyonce on being such a great business woman. I only “hope” that this revelation will help “other” up and coming artists as well who are looking for outlets to promote their music. Maybe, just maybe, you can totally “skip” radio play, and “still” make a “hit.” Stay tuned, and please have yourself a wonderful day.
Jill Scott and Brett Jolly in concert