Thursday, August 26, 2004

The Vacuum Suckers

A band was started by three boys and a girl in 2041 called the Vacuum Suckers. This is their road to superstardom:

First, they get good at their music and make something that sounds unique. They play a few local clubs for money and start a website to distribute Mp3's. People like their music at the clubs; they get a couple bucks from that which covers their website costs.

One of their band members plugs the website up to a utility that automatically registers their downloads with the DPRA (Download Payment Regulation Agency) so that they get a few cents for each time their songs are downloaded. The DPRA makes its cash from (1) a near microscopic percentage on one's income tax, costing maybe 3 dollars per year and (2) a few cents from blank CDs and cassette tapes. The DPRA registers fileswaps and downloads, then pays artists accordingly.

The band starts to see their hits go up, so they begin to focus more on improving their music. Larger local venues start to see the bands rising popularity, so they invite the bands to play at their clubs. The bands are paid based on the crowds the draw. The band's listening audience increases exponentially due to word of mouth. The band makes enough to live on per month through merchanizing and downloads.

The Vacuum Suckers catch the eye of an agent who negotiates tours, television appearances, and other good stuff. He calls them and invites them to run a national tour. First, though, the band's name must really be out there, so they makes some television appearances before their tour beings.

Then the tour begins. Inorder to make a good amount of cash, the band plays 15 shows nationwide. The agent gets an equal share with the band members, so the tour income is split into 5ths.

Since the band is not at superstardom state yet, they rent out smaller venues. Most of these hold an average of 7,500 people and cost an average of $1,500 (or 10% of total ticket sales, whatever is greater). The shows attract an average of 5,000 people at $15 a ticket. Each show draws in $75,000, the venues take $7,500 leaving $67,500 per show. After 15 shows in their national tour, the band makes $1,012,500. The money is split up, leaving $202,500 per person, enough to retire on.

However, another national tour would be even more successful the second time around. The Vacuum Suckers are awesome in concert. Their agent plans this one bigger, renting out larger venues. This time, the profits increase by x10, with the average venue holding 75,000 people. The end result, each band member makes $2,025,000.

In the last tour, the band didn't even sellout. On their third national tour at the peak of the prosperity, the band sells out at every venue. The end result? $15,187,500 from the tour, a total of $3,037,500 per band member (and the agent).

Although this success story is exagerated, each band member became a millionare through a few national tours and with good talent. This could be the future of music, a future without the RIAA. It may never happen this way, but it's a hope.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Instead, the artists who aren't already plugged on the radio by the industry don't get paid much (though this is changing as the internet is giving them more and more recognition), and the artists that become famous (simply because their record companies got them radio play) become stupidly rich, and as such, we have blithering idiots like Soulja Boy and Miley Cyrus dominating the airwaves and collecting millions from franchises and profits generated by the RIAA from sueing the shit out of that one 12-yr-old who torrents one measly 192kbps mp3 copy of a song.

Saturday, April 03, 2010 6:53:00 PM  
Blogger The Emperor of the Moon said...

It's an unstable situation, and the right force will rip it apart. The only reason it's survived this long is iTunes. iTunes allowed people to get that "one song"--instead of the whole album--at a fraction of the price. As a result, the record companies stayed afloat.

Sunday, April 04, 2010 2:08:00 PM  

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