Let's Get Physical!

Good Morning Everyone!

Thank you all for joining me today.  It still looks a bit dreary out but Wow!  My allergies are already in high gear.  If any of you deal with allergies and have found a natural way to cope, please feel free to share it with me.  The comment section is open for questions, comment and tips... (lol)
I grabbed a cup a tea and read through this week's interview with Peter and while I may have taken him off the topic of the process of "Creating Music", this week's blog was very interesting.  At least I hope you all will think so.

As always thank you all for returning and if you are new here, welcome.  I am very happy you have come by and I do hope you enjoy it.

I gave Peter a call and had the following chat.

Blu:
Good Morning Peter.  Is this a good time? 

Peter:
Yes. The weather has been pretty nice so I’m back outside meeting up with some of my 4-legged friends again. Check out this guy – very friendly!  Any ideas for what we can name him?

Blu:
Your friend is sooo handsome!!  I’m not even going to attempt helping you nickname him as that has gotten me into trouble a time or two… (lol)
Peter when we last spoke, we were talking about how well “Music That Tells A Story” did.  Was this your first concept album? 

Peter:
Yes. I like the idea of connecting songs and giving an album a theme for the reasons we talked about in Close Encounters of a Musical Kind on February 6th.  

Blu:
(OMG! he's been checking them out!)
Peter you know the name of the blog episode!  You have been reading it? 

Peter:
Of course! I am a fan of Blu DuBois and anything she writes, so I have been reading it, and I have to admit your titles are pretty interesting.

Blu:
I'm very flattered, thank you.  (back to the questions)  You have been doing this for, can I say a long time or is quite a while better? (lol) 

Peter:
I started playing guitar at 9 years old so I’ve been at it quite a while’.

Blu:
How has getting your music to the public changed?  

Peter:
It used to be the record label would have a distributor supply stores where the public would peruse racks of vinyl or CD’s and make a purchase. 

Now you go to your web browser, or ask Alexa and Google home to play an artist. It’s a totally different world. 

Blu:
Do you find it more difficult? 

Peter:
On the one hand it’s much easier to put music out these days. All you need is a digital distributor which will take just about anything that even remotely resembles music and put it on Spotify, Apple, Amazon, etc. However, because it is so easy to get music out for consumption, the field is overloaded with entries which make it harder to stand out from the crowd.

Blu:
How about marketing – harder or easier than it used to be? 

Peter:
In the old days the only folks putting out albums were signed to a record label and the label took care of all the marketing. But as it is very hard these days to get a record deal, many people are independent artists so they need to do their own marketing. Because many Indies aren’t savvy in marketing concepts I would say it is harder these days. 

Blu:
I love browsing for new Indie artists, I always feel like I am discovering some up and coming new artist and will be able to say, I listened to them when…..  But I am one of those people who like the idea of having something physical.  Like a book or a cd!  The artwork, pictures and even the tidbits about the artist were part of the fascination. That being said some artist no longer create these, choosing to release just digital singles.  How do you feel about that? 

Peter:
I think there are reasons for not releasing physical product. Releasing digital only is a very economical way to get music out to the public. Because there are no manufacturing costs (ie, CD, Vinyl, thumb drives), expenses are minimal. Another reason is that cars are no longer fitted with CD players. Lastly, streaming via Alexa, Amazon, Google home, etc. is the new music consumption paradigm.

The other side of the coin is, and I don’t think many folks realize this, when they stream, they are listening to a compressed substandard audio file. Without getting into the weeds, compressed audio has a lower sampling and bit rate which distorts the clarity of the sound. In contrast, CD’s have a much higher sampling rate which lets the ear hear more frequencies resulting in a richer listening experience. I think of it this way: streamed audio is like analog television with the old picture tube and CD quality being like a big flat screen TV. 

I’m old school where I like having a physical product with interesting liner notes about the music and cool cover artwork.  I also like being able to take it with me and not having to worry about the wifi connections and I can listen without having to sit thru ads! But really, I like the physical mostly because; the audio fidelity is far superior with a physical product than without. 

One thing I should mention that people may not realize is artist payouts from streaming is poor. For example, when one of my songs is streamed on Spotify, it pays out and average of $0.00437 (of a penny).  Just like any other business, music creators also have expenses - studio recording costs, hiring guest artists, mixing, mastering, marketing, etc. Buying physical product goes a long way in helping support artists so they can continue creating music for their fans. ;>)

Blu:
Wow Peter, I didn’t know that.  I mean that has to make it incredibly difficult.  So tell me, in the current climate, is it financially worth that effort? 

Peter:
In my opinion, if you can make it work and you are putting out quality, for me, it’s worth it. 

Blu:
Does whether you have a physical cd or just a digital release, change what you have to do to get your music to a place where people actually can hear it? 

Peter:
Not really. Everything goes thru digital aggregators now and whether it is a physical release, digital, or both, you’ll be on Amazon regardless of your release format.

Blu:
And speaking of hearing it, where are you on this project and can you share anything with us?   Anything at all, maybe drop a name or perhaps a sound appetizer? 

Peter:
I’m receiving tracks from guest artists and have started laying down some of my own guitar tracks. This is a clip of an electric violin playing a beautiful melody while the accompanying strings are playing a 2 chord riff with a jazz feel:

CLICK to hear Violin with Strings

Blu:  Thanks for sharing Peter.  Talk to you next week.

Well, that was some very interesting information.  So tell me, do you like your music digital or do you like to get physical.  I'll be watching the comment section.  Hope you join me next week.

                                                                                                  Blu

 

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