The Disappearance of Midlist Bands or My Chemical Romance has 54 Million Views

The Disappearance of Midlist Bands or My Chemical Romance has 54 Million Views

by Amelia G : July 18th, 2008

Finding great new music is always a good thing. It seems like it should happen all the time in this glorious digital age we are living in. I mean, artists can go straight to fans without the intervention of stodgy labels and, because everybody can post their opinion online, the fans can be the ones to say whether they like something or not. That is the utopian ideal there anyway.

When people actually go looking for music today, I think it is actually often more difficult to find what one likes. Somehow modern distribution has made it so that a very few recording artists sell record-breaking amounts of swag and tunes. Many thousands of musicians who would once only have been heard by friends can now get out to hundreds of people who appreciate what they do. But the midlist bands seem to have disappeared. Where are the solid enjoyable bands, in the genres I enjoy, who once could definitely have charted high, but maybe wouldn’t be #1 on the charts?

Without major label support, mid-sized high quality bands can get really lost in a sea of user-generated content on sites like MySpace and YouTube. MySpace, for example, allows fan profiles, so NIN shows up five times on the first page of top industrial bands on MySpace. I enjoy Nine Inch Nails, but what if I am looking for similar bands I am not familiar with yet? More on YouTube in a moment.

Given how popular music magazines once were on the newsstand, why are music websites not more popular online? I know one thing I personally do not like is that most sites devoted to music are owned by one or another record label. While I realize that there are only really six significant media companies in the world and all, . . .

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