“This is about music being a lifeline to so many, a way out of a bad situation, a way to provide for their families, a way to find themselves in a creative manner (whether they be the writer or the listener), a way to just use all of your talents at one time simply saying how you feel about yourself and things around you. That's true music and the beauty of it.... that is why I write.” - Music is... by Clayton Headd.
I just read a wonderful article on Beat. He nails it. Music is a psychological, spiritual and even a financial lifetime to millions of people. The music industry has underestimated the importance of music, probably since first 78 RMP disc was printed in 1898. For the record industry, it was a new, fantastic way to make money. And, that is still the bottom line. Major labels dumped many 1970s songwriters when Rap started making more cash than Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young. Royalties still flow from streaming and licensing, even after the songwriters are sacked.
Clayton Headd is specifically talking about various forms of Pop music, rather than Classical or Jazz, or various kinds of World Music. Still, he knows exactly how important music is in his life, and in the lives of other people. People who love and enjoy Beethoven Chopin, Brahms, Debussy, Stravinsky, Sibelius feel the same way about Classical music.
Clayton mention creative artists- the composers, the songwriter, the members of the rock band being slapped in the face: “we have people making millions off of a one line song that only takes up 10% of the song while the other part says yeah and oh 90% of the time.” That is the kind of songwriting and the kind of low-grade music the record companies have encouraged for over 30 years. The accountants decide making the most money, as fast as possible, is the major objective. Pop songs, with one or two catchy line do that very well. The problem is, we end up with Pop music that is far more boring than it is inspiring. And thousands of talented writers, with many things to say are ignored. Their music never reaches and audience, because an accountant decided it was not worth the money.
Major record labels have also ignored Classical and Jazz composers for over 30 years. Releasing very few recording in those genres, very few compared to the size of the audience, and the thousands of great performers. Classical and Jazz could be promoted and made more popular, if the labels made an effort to do so. In fact major labels are missing-out on millions of dollars of revenue by promoting only a handful of rock, rap, country and Pop musical styles. Millions of people pay millions of dollars to go to symphony orchestra concerts every year. (At least they did before Covid.)
The fact is movie audiences, the fans of Star Wars, The Lord of the Rings, and other successful films-- all those tens of millions of fans love Classical music, without even realizing it! John Williams composed Classical music, in the Romantic style of Brahms, Dvorak, and Sibelius. The major record labels have never had the good sense to view Classical music as a music style with HUGE potential for making money. It has only been popular and successful for 300 years or more!!
Listeners of all kinds, really should open their ears, and try out styles of music which are new to them. This is so easy, with all the music in every possible style available--- usually for free, online. And the most important thing for 21st Century listeners to remember is: Music is NOT FREE. Artists need to create the music, perform the music and record the music. And every single one of those artists has bills to pay--- rent, utilities, water, garbage and groceries--- just like the millions of people enjoying the music. When listeners, labels, and distributors of music are too cheap to pay artists, artists cannot pay their bills. That is no way to treat our creative geniuses! All the economic rewards should not go to a handful of accountants, big name rappers, and record company executives.