Last year, May 23 to be exact, I posted on Citizen Cope– and if you read it, you’ll know why he’s one of my favorite artist. If you download his new project, “The Rainwater LP”, I promise you’ll come up with a few adjectives that’ll describe why his music is so special to you! However, that is not the sole reason why I am so compelled to promote such a great artist on this particular day. On previous occasions, I have expressed my views on the music industry (What is a Single may 29th, 09; What is Greatest of All Time! July 26th 09; What is Before the Music Dies! Dec 21, 09) and it’s this artist’s decision to take the reigns of his career in the state of today’s industry that made it a no brainer for me.
Anyway, speaking of special, this is a special album to Cope as it’s the first release by his own label Rainwater Recordings. I hope you’ll read the following explanation of his decision to release the album this way:
It’s a great pleasure to announce that after being signed to a major label
recording contract for the better part of 10 years, my obligations have been
fulfilled and my new recording, The RainWater LP, will be released on my own
label RainWater Recordings.
The practice of selling your intellectual property and likeness throughout
the Universe and in perpetuity (this means forever) in exchange for a
recoupable recording advance always seemed like an unfair business practice.
Regardless, artists have historically been forced to sign these contracts
because it was the dominant way to make, promote, and distribute music.
There are good people at record companies that love music and do a great
deal of good. Unfortunately, contracts only follow people who sign them.
Staff sizes have been reduced, promotional dollars tightened, and the labels
are no longer properly equipped to develop acts, monetize catalog, or even
protect copyrights. There isn’t anybody home.
I’ve been very fortunate to write, produce, and release music from my
point-of-view and have these projects funded by various record labels. And
while their collective demise is unfortunate, the responsibility lies with
executives without ownership in their respective companies. A business that
should be artist driven is executive driven. People with vision and who
dream will fill the void left by Majors. People who love music and
understand its artistic and social value. Ones with long-term goals not
quarterly profit concerns.
Some risk accompanies this decision. First, there are the financial costs
associated with making an album: studio time, hiring players, mixing,
mastering, pressing CDs, hiring a publicist, radio promotion, etc. Second,
I don’t have “the machine” assisting the album’s promotion and marketing.
Regardless, it’s liberating to control both the way I’m represented and how
you receive the music. I hope you in turn share the music with your
friends, make mention of its release on your blog, twitter, or simply
sing-along at my shows.
It was a joy to make the record. I hope you enjoy it. It’s my favorite
Do World Famous a favor and keep good music alive and download this now! And if you happen to run in to Cope, let him know I’m lookin for him for a collabo!!! My man!!