That's right folks, times are changing and the music industry is going through one of the biggest changes it has ever had. With the decrease in album sales and the increase of digital sales, many labels are now not only printing up less albums, but focusing their promotion on the digital market. Artists don't make albums anymore, they make singles. Listening to an album from start to finish, is dead. Downloading your favorite new single as your ringtone, is alive. Frankly it makes me want to cry.
One of the largest music publishing companies in the world, EMI, plans to launch a music service by the end of the year. This is just one of the many things labels have done representing the direct-to-customer business model being used nowadays. "This is not an effort to compete with iTunes or Amazon," said a source. DUH you think so? No one can compete with iTunes, they control over 75% of the digital market.
EMI's service will be live on emi.com, changing their current boring mix of corporate and artist news, into a music store that will feature a mix of paid and free content plus it may even include non-EMI artists as well. EMI plans to use the "music discovery" function which shows fans of one artist, music from others with similar styles (like lastfm.com and Pandora.com already do).
EMI isn't the only major publishing company or label to try these direct-to-consumer businesses, Universal Music Group (which owns major labels like Interscope, A&M, Geffen, Def Jam, Motown etc) plans to launch a Hulu.com (nbc's online tv site) like site for it's music videos as well as artist content.