We were given this quote and asked to analyse it and find out the jobs record labels do for their artists.
"Record labels are media institutions and they are also commercial organisations"
This quote to me, means that a majority of record labels care mainly about the money they can make from their artists, more than the comfort and treatment of their artists. As long as their artists are doing what the label are saying, money will be coming in and the label are happy.
After giving our opinion, we researched into record labels and found out how they actually do business and treat their artists. The following points are what we found out Record Labels do:
-Firstly they use talent scouts to find new artists which they can sign for there Record Labels. Yet again, sadly, it is not always on their talent that they are signed up, but if they fit the criteria of an artist who will sell.
-They then help with the management of the bands/artists to help find gigs and shows to do with them. This is to gain them confidence and get them heard.
-They then help with the production, manufacture and distribution of records and albums which the band/artist releases. Unfortunately, again the band may not have much of a say on how they produce their records.
-Also the marketing and promotion of the records and albums with things such as music videos, which are fully funded for by their Label.
-And then they also give the band/artist copyright protection, which stops people using any thing affiliated with them unless they are paid for. Still, their key aim of making money.
The three biggest and most prolific labels are;
- SONY BMG
- Universal Music Group
- Warner Music Group
These labels are known/recognised as 'The Big Three'. These three labels own so many subsidiary labels, that at one point, they actually owned over 75% of all music released within a year.
The other type of record label which there is the minor or independent record labels, these are the much smaller record labels which work without the use of the big four funding them. These record labels tend to have more artists which are beginning their careers as they allow the artist much more freedom and control.