This is the problem with taking a corporate check. It undermines your CREDIBILITY! And next to your music, credibility is the most important thing you’ve got.
The manager can get a new client. The salesman can switch products. But the artist is stuck with him or herself. Screw up your image, and you’re toast. Neil Young has steered clear of the shenanigans and still does boffo at the b.o. His brethren who sold out, who took the short term money, they’re doing a fraction of his business.
Let that be a lesson to you.
If you think BlackBerry is anything but a footnote on its way to expiration, you didn’t read today’s reviews. Which are uniformly…mediocre. Glitches, no apps, and slow web-surfing… SIGN ME UP FOR THAT!
But no, Ms. Keys had to take the check. You know music sales are tanking and we artists just have to bend over and take it in the tuchas. We’ve got no choice.
First, you can make less money. Especially if you’re a star. Wanna make cash? Then tie up with a VC, like Bono.
Second, you can reinvent the wheel, like Amanda Palmer.
Third, you can tell your handlers, all of whom tell you to take the deal, that you’ve got their number, that they just want their commission, and that you mean less to them than…themselves, their families, so many other people.
An artist has to put him or herself at the pinnacle, the absolute top. He or she must be narcissistic. Because truly, no one else is looking out for him or her. Do poorly on the road and you can lose your agent, manager and accountant. The good old days when you were raining dough? Well, those are the good old days.
And Alicia Keys is just today’s example. How about those pop acts shilling for soda water, causing their fans to become obese and stroke out so they can’t be paying customers anymore.
First comes the artist.
Second comes the fan.
Everybody else is way down the pike, ESPECIALLY the Fortune 500 company trying to gain some headway on your back. Think about it. Why would they be attracted to you? They need their image burnished. But you’re selling out cheap. Your career is tarnished forever and the company shrugs its shoulders and moves on.
Music won’t be healthy again until it has self-respect. Until the artists stop being whores and stand for something other than cash and lifestyle.
You want people to believe? BE A ROLE MODEL! Someone with integrity, a fan with more success. Does a fan get these offers? Does a fan sell out to the man? No, the fan relies on you to reflect the human condition. When you have long hair and smoke dope and sing about your trials and tribulations, as opposed to how damn great your life is now that you’re rich and famous, then you truly connect, then the riches truly come raining down.
“Alicia Keys Jan 6, 2012 - Public
I’ve become an iPhone junky! Sad but true. (are u one too?) These are some of my favorite images from my latest download… http://thekeysofalicia.tumblr.com/ ”
So she switched to a worse platform because..?