NOBODY KNOWS WHAT THEY’RE DOING

From ‘Forty Years In, Yo La Tengo Are Still Making It Up as They Go‘ over at Pitchfork.

When Yo La Tengo invited Sonic Youth’s Steve Shelley to sit in with them for the entirety of their second-night set, the drummer pleaded, “I don’t know what I’m doing.” “You don’t have to,” Kaplan told him, adding, “We don’t know what we’re doing.” He only hopes that Yo La Tengo’s faith in their collaborators will spark “something interesting.” 

RAGE AGAINST THE CONTENT

Love this from ‘2022: The Year Music Broke‘ from Damon Krukowski (Galaxie 500, Damon & Naomi):

We are in a far worse situation than we were in 1991. Thurston’s part-jokey, part-deadly serious condemnation of the industry then – “When youth culture becomes monopolized by big business, what are the youth to do?” – feels like an understatement today. It’s no longer just about youth culture; it’s all cultural production that’s monopolized by big business. Thirty years of capital consolidation have created monopolies larger and more disconnected from “content” than we could have imagined even at our snottiest in the 90s.

I was in the thick of the 2001-2005 music blog frenzy. A good Pitchfork review helped sell thousands of albums, but by 2007 cracks were already starting to appear. Consolidation, the fight for Google search results, social media killing the comments sections, and the push by everyone to get a mention in a blog post drove the value down. CPMs plummeted, it was a race to the bottom and some people won, and lots more lost.

The biggies came in, sold their ads, and when it crashed to the ground, they moved on to other companies with shiny new job titles.

Scorch the earth, destroy the culture, and reap the rewards!

DIY CHILL VIBES MUSIC VIDEOS

I’ve been watching a lot of these videos on YouTube on mute, and pairing them with various releases I find on Bandcamp. It’s a fun way to build some relaxing videos to watch, especially if you mess with the playback speed.

Now you’ve got some slow motion chill vibe video playing, with whatever music you want alongside. Good times.

And then like… if you find two that pair well together, you can share both of those with your friends, or embed them both on a blog (like this), or Tumblr, or social media (for now).

DIGGING CHARLOTTAS BURNING TRIO

I am always more willing to give something a listen if it comes personally recommended, from someone I follow, or a close friend.

Steve shared a music recommendation to CB3, and this album that came out in August. Charlottas Burning Trio – what a great name and name mark.

I also appreciate this behind the scenes look here. Always a sucker for pink backgrounds and vibes.

NOW LISTENING

I’ve been working in and around music since 2001, when I started my first music blog, and my listening habits are all over the place.

During the day I mostly listen to Radio Tube – Drum and Bass Jungle on Apple Music.

I’ve been making sleepy time metal mixes called Goodnight, Metal Friend since 2020.

Been running Metal Bandcamp Gift Club since 2016. I think we helped sell at least four albums the other day for someone’s birthday.

Been writing HEAVY METAL EMAIL for over a year, just trying to help metal minded folks get back to sending newsletter so they can reach their fans directly.

I still listen to lots of metal – fuck, I work for Grammy award winning MNRK Heavy and three metal publicists who handle everyone from Alice Cooper to GWAR to Lamb of God to Killswitch Engage.

But it’s been fun to take in all sorts of music. Electronic. Ambient. Chip tune.

Life’s short. Listen to lots of music.

CONTROL WHAT YOU CAN CONTROL

Had a good conversation with someone who knows two very talented artists. And those talented artists know other very talented artists.

These artists are skilled, masterful, great.

But to make a living with any of that talent is nearly impossible. Everything is stacked against the artist.

Music is disposable with streaming music services.
Live music is drowning in rising costs and merch cuts.

It seems like there’s 1% of artists who are making it, then everyone else.

For me it’s control what you can control.

It will never get any easier to reach your fans on social media platforms.
Don’t hold your breath waiting for DSPs to pay out more.

Connect directly with your fans via your website and email list.
Create art worth talking about.
Make sure you’ve got something to sell.

THERE’S JUST TOO MUCH

This from Music Business Worldwide:

It was inevitable, but it’s no less eye-popping: approximately 100,000 fresh tracks are now being uploaded to music streaming platforms every day.

That’s according to two of the most influential figures in the modern music business: Universal Music Group CEO and Chairman, Sir Lucian Grainge, plus the outgoing CEO of Warner Music Group, Steve Cooper.

Addressing the Music Matters conference in Singapore on September 27, Grainge said that 100,000 tracks were now being “added to music platforms every day”.

In my line of work I have clients who sometimes release 5+ albums on a Friday, and that to me blows my mind. Five albums isn’t even a tiny blip when you consider 100,000 tracks being uploaded in a single day. Every day.