Sunday, March 19, 2006

Finally! The Indie-net Revolution

No major label support. The Arctic Monkeys shouldn't have gone anywhere, but they are topping charts everywhere via internet "word-of-mouth" promotion alone.

Let the revolution (finally!) begin!

From a Wired blog entry, Monkey Bites

Their story is remarkable because of one fact: grassroots communication channels like MySpace and P2P file trading networks worked better than the major-label hype machine. The Arctic Monkeys became hugely popular because they wrote good songs, made them available to their fans for free, and encouraged them to share the MP3s with their friends.

Actually, the tech may be new compared to say 1980-something but the concept definitely isn't. In fact the internet's own "band most hated by their own fans" eventually became a household name by word-of-mouth, handing out cassettes of their demos and encouraging their fans to copy/share the tapes...

That would be Napster's own worst nightmare come to life, aka: Metallica.

Ironic isn't it? I guess in the Napster days they'd kind of forgotten where they'd come from and what initially got them noticed in the first place. Today, they offer up free downloads of their past shows on their MetallicA -Live- site, with the cry of "Download - Burn - Share - Kick Ass!" plastered on each download page... Yeah, I still think they want all the $$$ they can get, but I also believe they remember where they came from once again...

Fight it all they want, the days of old school big labels calling all the shots are definitely numbered. Particularly if my own experience is any indication--all of the new artists I have gained any interest in over the last several years I have found via the internet. Not on the radio, not on the big labels. Nope. In fact I have found most of them through their association with Maganatune. What I like from the free/legal downloads, I buy.

Yeah, I get notices from EFF all the time about how the big media companies are trying to lock down every new (and even old) technology they can via legislation but they can't really win. The cat is already long out of the bag, and if they try to stuff it back in I think they're going to get bit. You can't kick your customers around very long before they stop buying from you. I think some of the big labels know that. There are faint signs that some are taking notice and maybe trying to move into this millennium. We'll see how they fare. Slam the stupidity and reward the positive efforts buy voting with your wallet. That's how I see it these days at any rate...

PS Oh, did I mention the Artic Monkeys rock? Shredders? No, but of the two songs I have heard, they really know how to groove! Definite '80s influenced rock vibe going on. Very cool!

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