Sunday, September 12, 2010

"Doing a Faithless"

There's a great interview in yesterday's Financial Times Magazine with Brian Message, one of Radiohead's managers, and part of the music company ATC Management, who help bands to make money in the digital age.

Everyone knows about "doing a Radiohead" and it was pretty much a one-off stunt; "doing a Faithless" would probably be appropriate for more bands:

"The Dance is Faithless’s first post-Sony album. Although Faithless didn’t copy In Rainbows’ honesty-box payment scheme, Radiohead’s example was fundamental to the band’s decision not to seek another record deal. “I remember thinking, we’re not as big as Radiohead but we’re big enough to do what they’ve done. We have a big enough fanbase, we can tour places, we sell enough records that we can really control our own destiny.”

Indeed, Armstrong estimates the band will earn more from The Dance than any of their earlier albums. At a major label, a top act gets about 40 per cent of the price of each album in royalties and publishing rights (after repaying their advance). This time around, Faithless get everything bar the retailers’ cut.

In the UK, The Dance is being sold exclusively for a year by iTunes and Tesco. Fiat paid for their latest single’s video and have named a limited run of cars after the song. Music snobs deride Tesco CD purchasers as mindless consumers reaching automatically for the nearest Susan Boyle; a Fiat midrange saloon is a long way from hipsville. Armstrong, however, is unrepentant. “I never want to compromise the music, but once it’s made I want everyone to hear it, because obviously I think it’s brilliant. I’ve always had that philosophy: use every opportunity to get your music to people.”"

Here's the Fiat ad:

One of their other bands is the much newer Band of Skulls.  Check out their website for examples of the sorts of things they're doing to promote them.

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