The 360 Deal

The 360 Deal -- Andrew Dubber (ed)

The 360 Deal — Andrew Dubber (ed)

360 as in “360 degrees”. The full circle. As in, we’ll take a piece of everything, thanks. — Andrew Dubber

Let’s all get wise, get educated, and help kids in poverty in India while we’re at it, yes? — Steve Lawson

The 360 Deal is what record labels are now offering, not content to milk musicians dry on recording deals, they now want to control and bleed dry every aspect of a musician’s life, touring, merchandising, publishing, management …

When the exploitative nature of the record labels is well known, bands reduced to little more than indentured slave labour working on the record label plantation, the last thing they need is those same record labels to control every aspects of their lives.

Amanda Palmer left her record label because they wanted to control every aspect of her life, what she wore, what she looked like, what her music sound like. She has never looked back.

James Taylor had accountants scrutinise his record label. He found he was being ripped of big time to the tune of millions of dollars.

A good management team gets you the best deal. They are on one side of the negotiating table, the record company the other. How can you get a good deal when the record label is your management team? This is like being in an in-house company trade union.

The 360 Deal is a book, an idea of Andrew Dubber and Steve Lawson with Andrew as the editor, to counter The 360 Deal promoted by the record labels. 360 people from all aspects of the music business, record executives, music producers, academics, rock musicians, classical musicians, techies, DJs, each give 360 words. The people giving this advice, may differ, but the one thing they have in common is experience and a love of music.

$3-60 is the minimum price, you can pay more.

The money raised, all 100% of the price you pay, goes to Music Basti, a music charity based in Delhi helping poor kids.

One of their projects, a joint project with New Music Strategies, was Monkey on the Roof. Street kids in India were pulled in off the street and taught music. They could not believe it when folks came from England and wanted to record them.

How do you measure success? Degrading yourself on X-factor, or having the privilege of helping street kids through Music Basti?

The 360 Deal is published by LeanPub as an e-book, with all proceeds going to Music Basti (LeanPub have waived their fees). Publishing as an e-book has the advantage that it can be published before it is complete, to get the advice out there, then continually updated until complete.

If you have 360 words of advice, then please contact the editor Andrew Dubber.

We need someone to advocate piracy and sharing, someone on crowd sourcing, why you do not need a record label, the importance of social media.

My own thoughts on contributors: Imogen Heap, Amanda Palmer, Zoe Keating, Yolanda Charles, Rudolf Schenker (founder and lead guitarist German rock group Scorpions, author of Rock Your Life), Paulo Coelho (writer and strong advocate of piracy, former record executive, producer and songwriter), Save the Tumbledown Dick (importance of small venues for live music), The Barn (hosting live gigs).

Rudolf Shenker was told he could not be a rock guitarist, he was German and only Brits and Americans could be rock guitarists, he ignored the advice and followed his dreams.

Paulo Coelho ignored the advice he was given and followed his dreams.

That is probably the most important advice you can be given. Follow your dreams, give it a try, or spend the rest of your life regretting your humdrum life. Play music because you love it, because it gives you a buzz, not because it makes your famous, not because it makes your rich.

The 360 Deal is a New Music Strategies project.

Another New Music Strategies project is Any And All Records, a rather novel if not unique record label, one that does not rip off the artists.

Excellent advice, money donated to a charity, is a much better 360 deal than that being offered by the record labels.

Steve Lawson and Andrew Dubber are co-founders of New Music Strategies.

Steve Lawson is bass player, and has been known to indulge in some excellent music and have some interesting views on the state of the music industry.

Andrew Dubber is professor of music at Birmingham University. And congratulations Dubber (as known to all his mates) for making professor.

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