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(Cracked)   What it's really like to get a record deal with a major label. Written by that one guy who did that one song   (cracked.com) divider line 78
    More: Interesting, things, record labels, Suffolk University, record deal, dance music, pop music, bus pass, rock stars  
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6110 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 05 Feb 2014 at 10:02 AM (32 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-02-05 12:49:04 PM

BarryTheMasterOfSandwich: mcmnky: bearded clamorer: Two albums into my career as a rapper...

[farm4.staticflickr.com image 250x272]

"What's it's..."

[stop reading there.jpg]

What is it is?  Is subby a rapper?


Look, I've apologized for's that typos.


BarryTheMasterOfSandwich:I'll take "Greetings" for $100 dollars Alex

Alex Trebek: "A common salutation used in the African-American community"

BarryTheMasterOfSandwich: "What is; "What it is""

Alex Trebek:"Correct for $100. Go again."

i.huffpost.com
 
2014-02-05 01:02:53 PM

willfullyobscure: . iTunes took a small chunk, and then the cost of making that album (production, printing, studio time) was probably $6,000. So I made a profit of $70,000


Hope you socked away at least 35 of it to pay your taxes, Sonny Jim. You're gonna find it real quick why literally every musician out there  incorporates as a record label if they don't sign...


Yep. I know a band that had signed to a big Indy label, received an advance, recorded, the label decided to not put the record out and sold it back to the artists (who now owed double on it), they sold it on iTunes, paid the company off, broke even, spent the remainder of the money on tour support only to break up. And then the IRS came knocking and they are all serving tables or coffee now just to pay the rent, one of them lives out of his car because uncle Sam is garnishing their wages.
 
2014-02-05 01:07:09 PM
peewinkle:
Yep. I know a band that had signed to a big Indy label, received an advance, recorded, the label decided to not put the record out and sold it back to the artists (who now owed double on it), they sold it on iTunes, paid the company off, broke even, spent the remainder of the money on tour support only to break up. And then the IRS came knocking and they are all serving tables or coffee now just to pay the rent, one of them lives out of his car because uncle Sam is garnishing their wages.

So signing with a major label is like college loans, then?


/Unless, of course, you're great at playing a children's game.
 
2014-02-05 01:25:16 PM
So he fit the suit?
 
2014-02-05 01:25:52 PM

BarryTheMasterOfSandwich: mcmnky: bearded clamorer: Two albums into my career as a rapper...

[farm4.staticflickr.com image 250x272]

"What's it's..."

[stop reading there.jpg]

What is it is?  Is subby a rapper?


Look, I've apologized for's that typos.


My bad.  I'd hadn't seen you're post.
 
2014-02-05 01:32:46 PM

EyeballKid: DIY, muthafarkas. Let the big labels go the way of the Titanic. They're just payola machines for the next line of whores who don't mind turning their "art" into commercials for soft drinks.


Unless you get found by an HBO tv show like Mackelmore and have a two year old single become a viral hit. At least that 's how it was explained to me.

But they're way into Pareto power distributions. 95% of the money goes to 5% of the music.
 
2014-02-05 02:09:55 PM

peewinkle: willfullyobscure: . iTunes took a small chunk, and then the cost of making that album (production, printing, studio time) was probably $6,000. So I made a profit of $70,000


Hope you socked away at least 35 of it to pay your taxes, Sonny Jim. You're gonna find it real quick why literally every musician out there  incorporates as a record label if they don't sign...

Yep. I know a band that had signed to a big Indy label, received an advance, recorded, the label decided to not put the record out and sold it back to the artists (who now owed double on it), they sold it on iTunes, paid the company off, broke even, spent the remainder of the money on tour support only to break up. And then the IRS came knocking and they are all serving tables or coffee now just to pay the rent, one of them lives out of his car because uncle Sam is garnishing their wages.


Did any of them think to hire an attorney or an accountant?
 
2014-02-05 02:13:35 PM

peewinkle: willfullyobscure: . iTunes took a small chunk, and then the cost of making that album (production, printing, studio time) was probably $6,000. So I made a profit of $70,000


Hope you socked away at least 35 of it to pay your taxes, Sonny Jim. You're gonna find it real quick why literally every musician out there  incorporates as a record label if they don't sign...

Yep. I know a band that had signed to a big Indy label, received an advance, recorded, the label decided to not put the record out and sold it back to the artists (who now owed double on it), they sold it on iTunes, paid the company off, broke even, spent the remainder of the money on tour support only to break up. And then the IRS came knocking and they are all serving tables or coffee now just to pay the rent, one of them lives out of his car because uncle Sam is garnishing their wages.


Sounds like they needed a better accountant, didn't keep good records, or both.  Many of the expenses you describe should have been deducted from taxable income, either that year or amortized over a few years.
 
2014-02-05 02:23:20 PM
as someone who has gotten screwed by a big label as an idiotic teenager in a grunge band and now as an artist who works with small labels (don't look up my music, it's an acquired taste), I'm way happier now than I was then. I've made deals on a handshake and been completely comfortable because I know who I'm working with and small niche labels that screw artists don't last very long. There is enough underground music out there for you to enjoy for the rest of your life regardless of what genre you like. Don't spend your time getting money from people whose sole purpose is to get rich off of you
 
2014-02-05 02:33:19 PM
welcome to your crony capitalist masters, biatches!
 
2014-02-05 02:34:56 PM
Besides the aforementioned Albini article (which this is a really good companion to) there's also The Manual by The KLF (a.k.a. Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty). Required reading, written by folks who came by their jaded view of the industry honestly.
 
2014-02-05 02:39:08 PM
He basically said that he's doing alright, and happier since being dropped.

/Just a summary for those that didn't bother to read it.
 
2014-02-05 02:40:14 PM

frepnog: theflatline: If you want white guy hip hop, who actually change it up, do things differently, try Wax or George Watsky.    kill yourself.

there, ftfy


You have never listed to either have you?
 
2014-02-05 02:43:34 PM

Oldiron_79: I DNRTFA, but I'd rather not make it big than be a 1 hit wonder.  If you are a 1 hit wonder you have all the negative aspects of being famous (paparazzi, tabloids, stalkers, people trying to sue you because they "know" you have money) without the sort of steady bunches of money for many years that you'd have if you was relevent for 50 years like the Stones or something


I dunno, if you are a one-hit wonder you have a chance to build a loyal fanbase nationwide, if you are any good and are willing to tour constantly after the record industry chews you up and spits you out.  Sure you go from playing small hockey arenas to college ballrooms and large bars, but hey ... for some people making a living writing and performing music beats having a 9-5 job.  And being able to draw 300-500 people a night 200 nights a year will pay the bills.

/I have a 9 to 5 job.
 
2014-02-05 02:46:27 PM
It's The Shaming of the True.
 
2014-02-05 02:47:18 PM

theflatline: I listened to his tracks, and a lot of it was more of the same.  Catchy but sounds like a guy who spent too much time listening to Sublime and the Offspring.  I skipped to his newer stuff and he is then emulating Dirt Nasty and Andre Legacy.

If you want white guy hip hop, who actually change it up, do things differently, try Wax or George Watsky.


Ummm Spose doesn't sound like either of those people.  What the fark tracks did you listen to that made you think that?
 
2014-02-05 02:52:00 PM

html_007: theflatline: I listened to his tracks, and a lot of it was more of the same.  Catchy but sounds like a guy who spent too much time listening to Sublime and the Offspring.  I skipped to his newer stuff and he is then emulating Dirt Nasty and Andre Legacy.

If you want white guy hip hop, who actually change it up, do things differently, try Wax or George Watsky.

Ummm Spose doesn't sound like either of those people.  What the fark tracks did you listen to that made you think that?


I did not say he did, I said, which is my personal opinion, that they are a bit more original than he is.  They cab be silly, they can be deep, but they are not parodys...
 
2014-02-05 03:01:48 PM
I've checked out a bunch of Spose since reading this article, and I plan to buy one of his albums come payday. He seems pretty cool to me.

Another one hit wonder that I ended up liking a lot is Marcy Playground. Their last album, Leaving Wonderland in a fit of Rage, is one of my all-time favorites (like, maybe top 30 or 40). Sometimes, a one hit wonder turns out to have deserved better, but what are you gonna do?
 
2014-02-05 03:12:18 PM

BarryTheMasterOfSandwich: I've checked out a bunch of Spose since reading this article, and I plan to buy one of his albums come payday. He seems pretty cool to me.

Another one hit wonder that I ended up liking a lot is Marcy Playground. Their last album, Leaving Wonderland in a fit of Rage, is one of my all-time favorites (like, maybe top 30 or 40). Sometimes, a one hit wonder turns out to have deserved better, but what are you gonna do?


Do people consider Marcy Playground a one hit wonder? Sex & Candy was obviously the only tune that really got much radio play but the rest of their catalog was pretty good as well. However, I guess none considered "hits" in the wide spread sense.
 
2014-02-05 03:29:27 PM

frepnog: factoryconnection: miscreant: I'm confused as to what labels actually offer artists these days. Marketing I guess? Distribution if you're actually going to put out a CD, but I would imagine you can quite easily go all digital these days.

Not being broke, or a chance to just be a musician and not a wage slave that is also pursuing music as a career.  Because I don't care how many titties get flashed your way, punching in for work at 9am after unloading the van after a gig at 3:30am SUCKS.

My favorite author (he writes action packed vampire novels, very good) has had like 4 or 5 books published.

Saddens me that he still has to work his soul sucking day job.


I know a whole bunch of writers who are "successful" in that a publishing house publishes their books and they get enough sales that they get decent royalty checks. Every single one of them has a day job because even though their publishers are dying to print the next book in their series, it still doesn't pay well enough to replace all the benefits they get from working. The friend who is most successful could make ends meet except he and his kid have (different) preexisting conditions so they really need the guy's awesome insurance he gets from his work. Even John Scalzi says that until the last few years when his fiction career really took off, they relied on his wife's job for insurance, and they're all healthy.
 
2014-02-05 03:49:24 PM

Brokenseas: Oldiron_79: I DNRTFA, but I'd rather not make it big than be a 1 hit wonder.  If you are a 1 hit wonder you have all the negative aspects of being famous (paparazzi, tabloids, stalkers, people trying to sue you because they "know" you have money) without the sort of steady bunches of money for many years that you'd have if you was relevent for 50 years like the Stones or something

I dunno, if you are a one-hit wonder you have a chance to build a loyal fanbase nationwide, if you are any good and are willing to tour constantly after the record industry chews you up and spits you out.  Sure you go from playing small hockey arenas to college ballrooms and large bars, but hey ... for some people making a living writing and performing music beats having a 9-5 job.  And being able to draw 300-500 people a night 200 nights a year will pay the bills.

/I have a 9 to 5 job.


Well something else I noticed on like a VH1 100 greatest 1 hit wonders of the 80s or some such program is that many people who are 1 hit wonders as artists are very sucessful as writers and wrote most of the songs for the1 hit wonders of the 90s, 00s etc, but I dont consider someone who wrote many hits they didnt preform to be a 1 hit wonder in the strict sense of the word.
 
2014-02-05 03:55:35 PM

ModernPrimitive01: as someone who has gotten screwed by a big label as an idiotic teenager in a grunge band and now as an artist who works with small labels (don't look up my music, it's an acquired taste), I'm way happier now than I was then. I've made deals on a handshake and been completely comfortable because I know who I'm working with and small niche labels that screw artists don't last very long. There is enough underground music out there for you to enjoy for the rest of your life regardless of what genre you like. Don't spend your time getting money from people whose sole purpose is to get rich off of you


I'm someone who likes acquired tastes (The Fall, Fark Buttons, Can), so don't be shy - give us a plug.
 
2014-02-05 06:02:17 PM
"3. You Write Songs by Committee"

and apparently articles for Cracked.  It multiple interviews by Cracked to put out a piece that is straight from the Ric Romero school of journalism.
 
2014-02-05 07:50:42 PM

ModernPrimitive01: There is enough underground music out there for you to enjoy for the rest of your life regardless of what genre you like.


Word up on this.

/Go to their bandcamp pages, send 'em a fiver

.

farkeruk: I'm someone who likes acquired tastes (The Fall, Fark Buttons, Can), so don't be shy - give us a plug.


Click on his profile, go to his bandcamp page, send him a fiver!
 
2014-02-05 07:52:12 PM
It's a shame he isn't a hot teenage girl from New Zealand.  Lorde's first hit was in the same vein, but more soulful and farkable.
 
2014-02-05 08:34:12 PM
7. Labels Hunt for Unique Voices

farm5.staticflickr.com
 
2014-02-06 02:19:10 AM
I listened to his "Awesome" song and was underwhelmed.  Of course, I've been listening to this quite a bit lately, which, while an unfair comparison, certainly puts the banality in sharp contrast.
 
2014-02-06 02:34:35 AM

Booyaxe: factoryconnection: miscreant: I'm confused as to what labels actually offer artists these days. Marketing I guess? Distribution if you're actually going to put out a CD, but I would imagine you can quite easily go all digital these days.

Not being broke, or a chance to just be a musician and not a wage slave that is also pursuing music as a career.  Because I don't care how many titties get flashed your way, punching in for work at 9am after unloading the van after a gig at 3:30am SUCKS.

This! Did the cover band, and original band stint for a good number of years.

/about 9 inches of snow here in Dover, NH


Spent one winter in Dover. Holy hell, you people are brave.

I'm from St. Louis, so I'm used to a little snow but God DAMN.

Anyway I heard the "I'm Awesome" song a few years back and thought it was pretty funny. This guy wrote a good article and it's nice to see he can make money on his own.
 
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