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Understanding the Music Industries

Understanding the Music Industries

© 2013 | 248 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
Everyone knows music is big business, but do you really understand how ideas and inspiration become songs, products, downloads, concerts and careers? This textbook guides students to a full understanding of the processes that drive the music industries. More than just an expose or 'how to' guide, this book gives students the tools to make sense of technological change, socio-cultural processes, and the constantly shifting music business environment, putting them in the front line of innovation and entrepreneurship in the future.

Packed with case studies, this book:

• Takes the reader on a journey from Glastonbury and the X-Factor to house concerts and crowd-funded releases;

• Demystifies management, publishing and recording contracts, and the world of copyright, intellectual property and music piracy;

• Explains how digital technologies have changed almost all aspects of music making, performing, promotion and consumption;

• Explores all levels of the music industries, from micro-independent businesses to corporate conglomerates;

• Enables students to meet the challenge of the transforming music industries.

This is the must-have primer for understanding and getting ahead in the music industries. It is essential reading for students of popular music in media studies, sociology and musicology.

Questioning 'Traditional' Models of the Music Industry
Structure of the Book  
1. Studying the Music Industries
Key Findings
Getting Started
Organizational Structure
Political Economy
Culture Industry
Historical Analysis
Technological Development
Media Ecology
Digital Technologies
Further Reading  
2. The Recorded Music Industry
Key Findings
The Structure and Size of the Recording Industry
A Brief History of the Recorded Music Industry
The Majors: Business Structures and Characteristics
The Independent Sector: Definitions and Types
The Ideology of Independence
Strategies for Dealing with Uncertainty and Risk
Further Reading  
3. Songwriting and Publishing
Key Findings
Songwriters, Performers and Publishers
Songwriting as Commercial Practice
Songwriting Methods and Tools
Music Publishing
Traditional Income Streams
'New' Income Streams
Further Reading  
4. Music Production
Key Findings
Changing Models and the Mythology of the Recording Studio
The Production Process
Production Careers and Roles
Project Studios, MIDI, and Other Developments
Further Reading  
5. Music Distribution
Key Findings
Introducing Music Distribution
Physical Distribution
Mass-Market Retailers
Independent Retailers
Second-Hand Retailers
Online Music Distribution
Streaming Services
Music Media Distribution
Unauthorized Distribution
Further Reading  
6. Music Promotion
Key Findings
Marketing, Branding and Gatekeeping
The Promotional Campaign
Music Journalism
Point of Sale Marketing (POS) and In-Store Music
Sponsorships and Endorsements
Grassroots Marketing
Social Media/Mobile Media
Further Reading  
7. The Live Music Industries
Key Findings
The Resurgence of Live Music
A Brief History of the Live Music Industry
Motivations for Live Concert Touring
Authenticity and Live Performance
Live Music Sponsorship
Roles and Responsibilities
Live Performance Contracts
Concert and Festival Ticketing
The Relationship between the Recorded and the Live Music Industries
Further Reading  
8. Music Audiences
Key Findings
Understanding Music Audiences
Music on the Move: From the Walkman to the iPhone
Music and Social Media Consumption
Heritage and Nostalgia
Record Collecting
Further Reading  
9. Copyright and Music Piracy
Key Findings
Introducing Copyright
Copyright Basics
Key Terms in UK Copyright Law
US Copyright Law: Key Differences
Collection Societies
Music Piracy
Music Industry Responses to Piracy
Artist Responses to Piracy
Further Reading  
10. Contractual Agreements and Relationships
Key Findings
Artist Management Agreements
Music Publishing Agreements
Recording Agreements
Further Reading
Complexity and Symbiosis
Be Wary of Metanarratives
Diversity and Reorganization
Where Next?

This is an invaluable book for anyone who wants to know how the modern music industry works. Students will find it clear and enjoyable to read, musicians will find it revealing and helpful, and budding music entrepreneurs will find it provides real insights. It is up-to-date, informed by the realty of the modern music business, and balances theory with practice.
Tim Wall
Professor of Radio and Popular Music Studies, Birmingham City University

Helpful for reserach projects in course, written papers etc.

Professor Dr. Christoph Jacke
Faculty for Cultural Studies, University of Paderborn
July 29, 2016

The book is a nice support for any course on the music industries, their functioning, role, problematic issues, etc. It has a good balance of theoretical concepts and empirical examples.

Ms Nune Nikoghosyan
Department of Sociology, University of Geneva
November 8, 2015

very helpful introduction to international popular music and media studies

Professor Dr. Christoph Jacke
Faculty for Cultural Studies, University of Paderborn
June 19, 2015

Useful for business students who wish to critically examine music as an industry

Dr Diepiriye Kuku-Siemons
Northampton Business School, Northampton University
June 22, 2015

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ISBN: 9781446207956

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