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Randy Jackson discusses why "cd sales are down"


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RJ was on Letterman tonight... said some stuff that people need to start thinking about before blaming the advent of MP3s for the supposed downfall of the CD industry. Yet another professional from the industry (regardless what you might think of him - he has sold a lot more records than you :) and is a talented musician) tells the cold, hard truth.

DL: Well the record business is nuts now anyway, because you... it's a... virtually impossible to sell stuff because get it off of the uh... internet. Is that how it works?

RJ: Well, you know - some say that Dave, but I mean I just... to me I think records - a lot of them are just really bad, terrible songs.

DL: Really bad records, yeah.

RJ: Yeah, cause I mean - you look at things like you know - a couple years ago we had a Mariah Carey record. She sold 12 million copies because it was a great record. Chris Daughtry, 4million copies. Nickleback, 8 million copies. Carrie underwood, 6 million copies. If it's good, I think people will buy them.

DL: But it's uh - there's more music now - popular music now than when I was a kid, I think. Is that right?

RJ: Are you sure?

DL: I think so.

RJ: I don't know if there is more "better", I'll tell you that. I think there is more "bad" music, and I think there is still the same number of good.

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While Jackson's background as a musician is indeed exemplary (having begun in Billy Cobham's band), what he is doing on American Idol IS an prime example of what is wrong with the music market.

American Idol is nothing but a talent contest designed to generate their own hype over artists whom they 'can' and market. None of the artists they have produced would have otherwise made it on their own.

"Believing the music business to be in a creative slump, Jackson had strong feelings about the increased emphasis on looks over talent, as well as concerns about the longevity
of many new artists. But watching tapes of the original British version
of the show persuaded Jackson to change his mind, joining Simon Cowell
and singer Paula Abdul on the American Idol judging panel. "I'm doing the same thing I do as an A&R person," Jackson was quoted as saying in an interview with the Miami Herald. "You know what you're looking for, what makes a star."


American Idol's star search attracted tens of thousands of aspiring
singers in seven cities. In Los Angeles alone, an estimated 11,000
people registered for the second season's auditions, only two of whom
made it through to the show's final 12, according to a special American Idol edition of People magazine. Although the judges were not asked to hear all the contestants, Jackson found the grueling audition process exhausting and at times dispiriting, despairing of the delusions of many of the hopefuls. "This is a hard, tough, tough business," he told Newsweek, "I think karaoke has done the record industry a huge disservice."


American Idol proved a massive hit for the Fox network, swiftly graduating, said US
magazine, "from guilty pleasure to outright pop culture obsession." The
first season attracted an average of 12.7 million viewers, while the
second season averaged 21.7 million, with more than 38 million viewers
tuning in for the finale, according to The New York Times. Because of the public appetite
for the show, it was expanded from 25 to 38 episodes in its second
season. The series spawned a movie, concert tours, compilation albums,
an interactive video game, associated merchandise and a spin-off series
called American Juniors, while Newsweek reported on
foreign versions of the show in more than a dozen countries. The album
by first season winner Kelly Clarkson, debuted at number one on the
Billboard charts in April of 2003. By the end of the second season,
Jackson felt confident enough about the integrity of the judging
process and public vote to laud the show's contribution. "This gives me hope for music," he told Newsweek. "It could be the start of a music business where it's based on talent, like it was in the '60s and '70s."

http://www.answers.com/topic/randy-jackson?cat=entertainment


Mediocre is a term to which American Idol and the entire genre aspires.

Despite the music business being in a "creative slump", the notion that American Idol " gives (Jackson) hope for music," he told Newsweek. "It could be the start of a music business where it's based on talent, like it was in the '60s and '70s" should tell you how desparate the industry is to find and market product. One would hope that there was more substance to the industry than the likes of Clay Aiken.

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I don't know what the technical term is but as soon as I hear a performance with a low bass guitar chord neverending in the entire song it's bye bye for me. That tells me they can't play the instrument and they cannot write music and they are not creative and they haven't reached puberty.

JJK

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I don't think RJ emphasized it enough. There is an absolute TON of CRAP music available. I can't believe some of the stuff that gets promoted. People will always pay for something good. I think he made a good point. Most CDs have at best a couple of good songs. The rest is junk filler.

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Mas said..."American Idol is nothing but a talent contest designed to generate
their own hype over artists whom they 'can' and market. (I agree) None of the
artists they have produced would have otherwise made it on their own."

Jackson found the grueling audition process exhausting and at times dispiriting, despairing of the delusions of many of the hopefuls. "This is a hard, tough, tough business," he told Newsweek, "I think karaoke has done the record industry a huge disservice."

So to Mas and Mr Jackson SORRY, BUT I DISSAGREE...

Carrie Underwood
picked up three honors Tuesday night (May 15) at the 42nd annual
Academy of Country Music Awards show in Las Vegas, giving her the most
trophies of any entertainer at the event.

On top of being named
top female vocalist, Carrie's debut CD, the quintuple-platinum Some
Hearts, won in the album of the year category. Her music video for
"Before He Cheats" garnered wins for Carrie, producer Randy Brewer and
director Roman White.

Upon accepting her third award of the
evening, Carrie said, "I'd like to thank God for giving me so much that
I do not deserve. And I'm crying again, because this is what I do at
awards shows, so I'm sorry... My friends, my family, fans, thank you.
God bless you. And, of course, the place that started it all...I would
not be here if it weren't for American Idol."

Karaoke is for average people to enjoy singing their favorite songs.. I agree a lot of average to worse voices to most peoples ears out there. But on a rare occasion, I have also heard some people with the right connections that could of easily been famous too! The thing is, karaoke got people out to have fun and to sing again. And that to me is good.

To quote a friend of mine, Karen, who is a KJ or Karaoke Jock:

"Everyone can sing
As humans, most of us have been blessed with a voice.
One which allows us to communicate and laugh and cry
And sing.
But we are taught that certain people are special,
And deserve the right to sing because their voice is better
Or prettier?
And we support those elite few by giving them money,
And singing along with them in our cars
Or our showers
Or sometimes walking down the street
Because we are moved by them.
Until, we catch the next car over staring,
And having been caught,
Silence ourselves.

Now I'm not saying there isn't brilliance of talent in the universe.
Artists,
Voices that can touch millions, and move us to sing along in our cars
Or our showers.
All I'm saying is we each have an inherent need for self expression.
And insecurity and fear and this elitist mentality,
Prevent us every day from discovering the great works of art
That are most definitely hiding within.
With a little luck,
Some humor,
A smart-*** DJ,
And maybe a wee bit of alcohol, LOL.
Together, we can create a non-threatening environment
Where we can all feel comfortable enough
To find our own voice."

90% of Karaoke people just go for the fun of it.. 9% need to go home..(OK this could be a lot higher..LOL) and 1% do quite well.

Just like that 1% who we buy records/ cd's/ dvd's and download songs from!

Carrie Underwood was just a little cute kid singing Karaoke with no connections. If they find 1-2 artists a year like this.. The show is a success!

And for the record.. I can't be politically correct enough to express in words my own dislike of Clay Aiken...

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Carrie Underwood
picked up three honors Tuesday night (May 15) at the 42nd annual
Academy of Country Music Awards show in Las Vegas, giving her the most
trophies of any entertainer at the event.

On top of being named
top female vocalist, Carrie's debut CD, the quintuple-platinum Some
Hearts, won in the album of the year category. Her music video for
"Before He Cheats" garnered wins for Carrie, producer Randy Brewer and
director Roman White.

Upon accepting her third award of the
evening, Carrie said, "I'd like to thank God for giving me so much that
I do not deserve. And I'm crying again, because this is what I do at
awards shows, so I'm sorry... My friends, my family, fans, thank you.
God bless you. And, of course, the place that started it all...I would
not be here if it weren't for American Idol."

So Carrie Underwood is genuinely the BEST female vocalist in country music?

Not even in your most wildly optimistic dreams!

But leave it to an industry whose myriad self and mutual admiration awards shows are solely for the purpose of further merchandizing and selling product.

Compare the best of anything Carrie has done to the worst thing that KDLang or Emmylou Harris and Carrie is still light years behind.

And it is an indication of exactly why what is called "country" music - the same nonsense that Alan Jackson lamented as being largely 70's retread pop songs (My Maria 'by' Brooks and Dunne being a prime example for the folks soooooo aware of the BWStevenson song - of which Shambhala is the flip side and the EXACT same song with different lyrics!) was also a hit by 3 Dog Night! - has been plumeting in ratings for the past 10 years.

Of course most of the rest are Lefty Frizell drawl imitators (cause you simply got to tawk that way if you want to sang cuntry) and why inside the industry these 'formula' artists are 'lovingly' referred to as "hat" and the ever endearling "ROPS" (regular ol' piece of...) acts...

If Carrie Underwood is indeed the state of the art in country, its long past time to bury that format, as the stench has simply grown unbearable.

Truth be known, there is a wealth of real talent out there, but you won't hear it on the radio - nor is it featured in the awards shows who only feature what is marketed. And the ONLY thing currently worth listening to in 'country' is the Americana format and 'alt country'.

And its pretty sad when the most interesting thing about Clay Aiken isn't his music but his sexuality! [*-)] And he doesn't want to talk about that. Sure makes the entire topic simple for me.

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For the year, yes, Carrie was.

Now, is she the best of all time.. heck no.

She did manage to sell over 5 million cd's. If you have heard her sing... Yep she can do that too. I think she will be around for many years to come.

So we kinda agree here. LOL

But she is the real deal..

Clay Aiken.. cough.. I could care less!

If were talking "real" country music.. Come to Nashville Indiana << Yes right state, lol, in the summertime.. Country, western, bluegrass, it is all pretty cool. And you just might see KDLang and or Emmylou Harris with Vince Gill too!

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I don't mean to belabor the point, but sales do not in any way mean "the best". Allot of "clappers" and Chia Pets are sold too. [;)]

And there are MANY artists who are much better. This year, last year and next.

But if you like her stuff, that's all that matters.

It has been interesting to watch the various label's 'stables', and to watch them cannibalize other artist's songs (yes, often songs that are literally theirs!) in order to feed and support the top 2 annointed "products". And unfortunately it is too often at the expense of a much more talented artist - but one which does not fit the preferred formula.

There is actually lots of VERY good music available. The problem is that you have to scavenge it on your own, as the mainstream sources for learning about it have become dominated by companies pushing out of date copycat formula acts that have ceased to have a connection with the market.

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That's great and all - but the point of the thread - or the entire topic of CD sales up or down has nothing to do with who is the best... but more along the lines of who is good enough to generate sales. As Randy said in my original post: "Carrie underwood, 6 million copies. If it's good, I think people will buy them."

No - she's not the best... not even for the year she won the awards. It just meant she is good enough to generate sales. The point is - if it is good - people will still in fact fork over cold, hard cash to buy an album - MP3's (legal or otherwise) not withstanding.

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To chime in on this I'd note Paul Potts from England's star search. There are people of all ages who have the potential for a serious entertainment career who need a star search type avenue to make that happen. That shows like AI do it in such an obnoxiously commercial fashion makes it no less successful for the artist who excels. Not everyone is equipped to deal with the ins and outs of navigating a career through routine pathways. Besides it is great entertainment. There's everything to gain and nothing to lose.

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For the year, yes, Carrie was.

Now, is she the best of all time.. heck no.

She did manage to sell over 5 million cd's. If you have heard her sing... Yep she can do that too. I think she will be around for many years to come.

So we kinda agree here. LOL

But she is the real deal..

Clay Aiken.. cough.. I could care less!

I do think Carrie Underwood is really good. She had, imo, the whole package to make it all the way when she was competing on the American Idol. I do like her songs and I think she's really hot. The last time I saw her perform, I did notice that she was a little skinny though. It seems that she lost a lot of weight or probably because she dated Tony Romo (and got dumped??). Ohhh well.

Clay Aiken is very talented as well but not really a huge fan. I do admire him A LOT for his work with people with disabilities.

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