I am going to Chicago this weekend to play guitar in my dad’s band as we lead some of the worship at the Simply Youth Ministry Conference. I’m looking forward to the opportunity to share our songs and unique sound. Before I depart this morning, I wanted to share a few things that I’ve been thinking this week about the way the music business is changing. First, you can check out this blog, The Future of Music, which gives you a good picture of what sort changes I’m talking about. The biggest changes have to do with how people hear new music, interact with other fans, interact with artists, and how they consume music and other media. If you have Netflix, you can relate to the idea that a change in technology can change the entire way that you get connected to entertainment
You might remember me writing a few weeks back about the website, lala.com. As read more about lala, I learned that it’s actually made a big deal with google so that every time you do a search on an artist or song, it puts the lala link at the top pf the search where you can click to listen to the song.
This week, my friend Tanya introduced me to another site called, grooveshark.com. Grooveshark is a throw back to the old days of the big, bad “illegal” version of Napster. The difference is that grooveshark streams music instead of doing downloads. Their site claims that they have deals with all the major record companies, but if you google grooveshark you find a bunch of news stories about all the companies that have filled lawsuits against the site. The point is that it gives you free access to listen to any song that another user might upload. This gives the power to control who listens to the music to users and disconnects the control of the music from the record companies or from the artist.
This week, I was also introduced to a site created by a fellow Presbyterian musician, Derek Webb, called Noise Trade. This site restores the interaction between fans and artists. With Noise Trade, artists can trade a download for an email, give fans an easy way to virally share their favorite artist with their social networks, and it also includes a “tip jar” which gives fans the opportunity to give back to the artist. I am definintly going to sign up for this when I get back from the windy city.
I’m kind of rambling, but the point is that our ways of selling, consuming, and sharing music is changing to be more free and more instant.