Dude, I got a Record Deal!

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October 6, 2010 by DJ Elroy

The Digital Age is a great time for music!

But maybe not so good for musicians… Right?

More people have access to more music than ever before. The gatekeepers no longer have the power to dictate what the masses hear. Used to be they controlled what “made it” and what didn’t.

But not anymore.

Art by Michael Heald @ fullyillustrated.com

And that’s what bothers the major labels. They aren’t essential to the success of an act anymore. And as more people figure this out, they will stop turning to the big labels for support. Back in the day everyone was looking for a record deal with one of the majors… But since the big boys have screwed so many people over – and have forced once creative artists into the pop-music mold – the up-and-comers today are avoiding them like the herp.

And the major labels are feeling it their pocket books.

Acts are signing to the smaller or indy labels or going it alone. And succeeding.

But dance music has never really been noticed by the big labels anyway. Yes, there are a few exceptions, but for the most part dance music has been and remains relatively underground.

And why not? Even the biggest DJs don’t have the mass appeal (or selling power) of a Lady Gaga. Or do they? Maybe in Europe, but definitely not here in the US. I will say that niche fans seem to be more loyal and more willing to pay than the pop masses, but are they enough?

Dance music differs from pop and other genres because the artists are usually the ones that run the labels. No suits here. No middleman. And that could be a good thing…

These people usually have more than money invested in the project. It’s their time. Their love. Their life. And the end product usually reflects that. With the Digital Age we can cut out the extra hands in the pot. No more pressing and product costs, no more vinyl distribution costs. And this means that almost anyone can do it.

You don’t need the big boys to make it in the dance music world. But you do still need skills. And a good sound and style. Dedication. Persistence. A thick skin. The ability to market yourself. The right contacts. And some luck.

So it’s not going to be easy. But it is attainable.

You can’t blame your label or your agent for failing. Only yourself.

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