Are Record Labels Obsolete? Not Universal Music Group
Eminem, Ariana Grande, BTS, and even Yo-Yo Ma prove that delivering music to the masses is a team effort that record labels have mastered.
Back in the day getting a record deal was the end all be all for a fledgling band or musician. Record companies controlled the production, distribution, marketing, retail, radio play, and even live venues. The barriers to entry have been blasted away by technology, the great equalizer. Anyone can make a digital recording at home and share it with the world and hope to be discovered. Youtube, SoundCloud, and other platforms allow anyone to deliver music to their fans, or potential fans.
So who needs a record deal anymore? While anyone can post and pray to become a pop star, record labels are still minting them. Consider Universal Music Group and the success they had this month so far shipping hit records.
UMG owned the Billboard Digital Album Charts in September with these hot drops:
Eminem - dropped Kamikaze cold overnight and had huge sales
Ariana Grande - She is a pop phenom, and owned the charts
The Red Cobras - new rock with an old school sound thrives
BTS - The Tour! The Album! Coordinated with precision
Yo Yo Ma - There is always room for Cello!
The coordination of mastering an album, delivering it to all digital platforms, achieving simultaneous launch, and delighting fans is very much in the UMG record label wheelhouse. While you still can self post anything for somebody, a record deal will get the right something to everyone.