Music Business

Beats New Apple Boss Says “Music Is Dying”

Beats DealCan Apple Save The "Dying" Music Industry? 

Eddie Cue, the widely respected Apple executive that spearheaded the deal to buy Beats Electronics and Beats Music, is also the person who Jimmy Iovine, Dr Dre and the rest of the Beats team will report to. But just a few hours after inking the $3 billion deal, Cue expresses a very pessimistic view of the state of the music industry.

"Music is dying," Cue said in an onstage interview yesterday at the Code Conference in LA. "It hasn't been growing. You see it in the number of artists. This past year in iTunes, it's the smallest number of new releases we've had in years."
And apparently, Cue thinks he's just the guy to change the downward trend. “Music is something really important to culture,” he said in the same interview. “It’s important to everyone in the world. … This (deal) is about us continuing to invest in music.”
What do you think?  
Does the music industry need saving? And if so, will Cue, Apple and Iovine be the ones to do it? 

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  1. Just because people don’t want to pay 99 dollars for the supposed “privilege” of being on iTunes doesn’t mean music is dying. Maybe the reason why people aren’t posting their music to iTunes is because you have places like Bandcamp that aren’t going to penalize you for just wanting to have your music in their storefront. iTunes still has a stranglehold, but it’s not as tight as it used to be. People aren’t flocking to it as they once were. There are different options. They’re realizing that the market is wide open and even though it’s probably advantageous to be in iTunes if you’re a bigger artist, you don’t need to be there. It’s not the necessity it once was. You can sell music through Soundcloud of all things. You can use YouTube the way you used to be able to use the radio. Even Google Play is better than iTunes, offering a one-time cost to the artist of $25. Even a company like Tunecore wants $49.99 per year per album JUST TO BE IN A STOREFRONT. That’s not even counting the percentage that iTunes takes. And I can’t really speak for music, but I know that when I was uploading stuff for a podcast, I still had to find my own storage space. That’s not even counting the stupid 30 second song previews which aren’t even that helpful to be quite honest. That’s not even considering that every iTunes store is different and what’s available in France or Bulgaria isn’t necessarily available in Uzbekistan or Bolivia. Let’s just say that you’re like me and most of your fans live in countries like Hungary and Poland? So I have to either accept that they won’t be able to get my record on iTunes or pay extra for the privilege of being able to sell more efficiently to my fans just because they don’t live in the same country as me?
    So no. I don’t like iTunes. I mean, yeah, it’s good if your fanbase is made up of people who are lazy and hate music. But what about the rest of us who will sell MAYBE 100, 200, 1000 copies of an album? Considering the regular and yearly fees alone, I can’t say I really think it’s worth it. It feels a lot like the old guard trying to adapt and failing miserably to do so. It shouldn’t be difficult for you as an artist to get your music to your fans but much like old media companies still stuck in the early 2000s, they feel it’s their right to control the marketplace. But on the internet you just can’t do that. It won’t work. If you want to be successful, you can’t do that by alienating the people who supply you with products and your consumer base. That’s really what iTunes is doing. And though it’s worked in the past for them, now that there are options beyond Apple’s gated suburbs, don’t be surprised if you find them a little bit emptier next year.

  2. @Choy Facts: I’m not knocking using soundcloud or bandcamp to sell music but have you ever thought of using CD baby? releasing a digital single only costs 12.99 US dollars (albums are 49 dollars). It’s a one time fee and it includes a bar code and it gets you in every itunes store in every country and in every other realm of paying digital distribution in the known universe including all streaming audio services that pay. They keep track of all your revenue earnings for you and you can view it anytime you want. They also give you stats on who’s buying your music (they do other stuff for you too but I wont go into it all here)…..No I don’t work for them, but I think they are a great deal considering all they do for you.
    I don’t agree with Eddie Cue that music is dying. I just think it’s been devalued by online piracy and too many musicians who for too long have been willing to work for free (IE: Exposure).

  3. @ Choy Facts:
    PS: Where do you come off saying that the people who use itunes, hate music?
    When does paying for music equal hating it.
    Maybe something is getting lost in the translation here; but where I come from paying for music shows that you respect it and you respect the musicians who created it.
    The people who steal music obviously don’t hate it (or they wouldn’t steal it) but they certainly dis respect the music and the musicians who create it.
    PPS: Be glad that iTunes is out there. They where the first major company with any kind of world wide influence that began to stem the tide of illegal piracy. When everyone was saying “I’m never going to pay for music again”, they where the only ones to say “No, music has value”. When all the record label online stores failed miserably, Apple showed how to do it successfully.
    The world for musicians would be a much darker place without this.

  4. I’ve never understood how people can complain about a yearly $49.99 fee from Tunecore. At MIDLINE pricing, AFTER apple takes their cut you’re breaking even after 7 album sales.
    If you can’t sell 7 albums, I think there’s a bigger issue you need to think about…

  5. the industry isnt dying. this idiot obviously hasnt looked at youtube, or looked into metalcore and harder types of music in the industry.

  6. Music is dying because of piracy, which both directly harms creators, and permits unethical rationalizations of underpaying to artists by companies like Pandora, Spotify, YouScrooge, etc.

  7. Music will never die! The industrie gets everytime new ideas like music for your mobile and all this app stuff. It brings money to the music business!

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