Saturday, October 23, 2010

Narrow-minded?

As I'm gradually narrowing Painted Romans' prescence on the web, I have made music players available in the webshop section where you can preview both "Evil Wigs and Bedroom Moments" as well as the upcoming release "Painted Romans ...and Time!"

But why should I want to narrow my prescence, you might ask? . . .


- A philosophy behind Painted Romans

The year (ca.) 2000 marked a huge change in the way that music is consumed. . . We all know that, don't we? The 20th century saw the appearence of vinyl, tapes and CDs, all of them with sales that peaked sometime very late, but long before the turn of the century. Around 2000 a website called Napster appeared - a p2p site which allowed people to share music in completely new ways by letting a user enter another users computer from where music files could be downloaded. I'm sure every user of the internet knows how it works by now. . . Although the original Napster was successfully discontinued by Metallica (and they've been taking more than a few punches since), other sharing services was already in the crafting and were becoming increasingly available. Now, ten years after, CD sales are dropping with the speed of light and MP3 sales are following in that same downward spiral. Streaming has become the new platform for music, and even though Spotify (which I've gathered must be the leading streamer) is offering a fee-based account, only a low percentage of the users choose it - rather going for the free account that offers the same, only interrupted by advertisements.

It's clear to see that artists these days can't rely on music sales alone, as they will at its best cover the break-even for producing the sound carriers; studio time becomes ridicolously expensive (and hopeless) when placed in this realistic scenario. The only real options are playing concerts, getting lots of airplay, and possibly nailing a publishing deal - given that other successful artists use the songs, or advertisers and PR and such. . .

I, on the other hand, have not yet taken a genuine interest in publishing towards others, nor to making sounds that accompany the marketing of someone elses' product. To be honest I haven't yet established a performing ensemble either (although Painted Romans have been two on stage, and that have worked great!). . . All this might, however, change at some point.

Instead of producing pre-pressed CD's prior to a release (it typically costs a house, doesn't it?) I will be making limited, hand made items aimed at whomever takes an interest in the music. In other words; one cannot expect to find it on Spotify, or even in shops (there aren't really any CD shops left here in Norway. Mad I know!) However, MP3s might be an option if they're the best quality, but they will only be available from one provider in such a case.

Today mostly everything seems to revolve around all kinds of social network societies like facebook, twitter, linkedin, myspace, errr and what have you. . . Their common factor is indeed 'exposure', and at that they work really well. Or do they? I have chosen to go the opposite way by keeping just this dedicated website, (perhaps leaving the myspace page intact, dunno yet) and of course an email address. I made this choice not to exclude myself from the world, nor to play hard to get, act childish and so forth, but simply because I feel that the more options - the more fleeting everything is. This I know is true, but hey; I don't really think it's a choice at all because by limiting my online prescense I can only assume that you, the reader, are more likely to have taken a genuine interest in the music, because let's face it; personal websites are not the "hype" nowadays. Perhaps the internet should've ceased to progress a few years ago while most of the content were of some interest and all that overwhelming advertising everywhere weren't yet messing with our minds. . .

But here I feel that I need to balance something out: I am not criticising social networks and the use of such services. I am only saying that they are unsuited platforms for a project like this. If such an attitude stands in the way for massive exposure, then maybe this mathematical formula of an expected scenario can be explanatory:


But then again I'm not a grade A in mathematics!

Put simple: I want to concentrate on this specific website, where I am in control and don't have to go along with naughty and undemocratic changes in design and administration. . .

This might sound compelling in a sort of wicked way, but it is the way I want it, and since you are now visiting these personal websites I can only tell you how grateful I am that you are stopping by, and how flattered I am to know that you are spending some moments here, when there is so much else to do on the net. . .

Despite all this - sharing is everything!

Thank you!

Ps! Be not afraid to write me your thoughts. . .

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