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Why Bob Lefsetz is wrong (and why The Police SAVED music)

system 22 Mar 2004 20:16

Bob Lefsetz maitains that the Police 'ruined the record buisness'.
He is wrong on so many levels it's almost funny.

The Police did something for the music buisness that was far more groundbreaking and far more beneficial for the artist and label relationships.
When negotiating the Polices' first single release with A&M , Miles Copeland refused to accept a large advance from the label, instead he negotiated a higher percentage per sale on all future Police royalties...risky for the artist , but Miles had faith in this charges.
By 1984 , A&M OWED the Police millions, not the other way around.
This was unheard of in the history of music, not only did the Police own ALL their material , they were OWED millions of dollars from a major label.


How did this occur?

1.The Police were willing to tour constantly, putting in the hard yards and effort..exploiting new markets that the industry had chosen to ignore....India, Eygpt, Pakistan...the far East etc.....Traditionally these markets were considered 'dead herrings' to the majors.

2.Rejecting the traditional millstone of accepting large advances and small percentages.This means the band are considered 'low risk' by the label and the chances of being 'dropped' are smaller.
The Polices' first 3 singles stiffed in the U.K, yet the Major still pressed ahead and released their debut LP. Imagine that happening in Australia (lol)

3.The onus of performance shifted back to the label to perform, the label are more willing to invest back into an up and coming band when the band aren't in debt and the label must sell to recoup their own debts and not the wildy successful bands debt.

4.The Police rejected traditional methods of recording.
They recorded in a small cheap studio and recorded their debut LP over a space of 12 months inbetween touring.
The Polices first LP 'Outlandos D'amour' cost $10,000 to record.
Tusk by Fleetwood Mac cost over $1 million dollars. To date the Police's debut album has outsold Tusk by 3-to-1.

5.Previous to Miles Copeland, manages were shady crooks who ripped off their artists for millions upon millions of dollars...the list is endless, and the tales of bands ripped off and left broke and in debt and now sadly a part of Rock mythology.
Previous to the Polices acsendancy, many artists struggled to maitain ownership of their own songs, even the Beatles don't own their own catalogue!
Once the label has the band over a barrel, the band and manager resort to desperate tactics to keep the band solvent....selling the catalogue (ref: Beatles, Beach Boys, Stones etc..) or signing away huge percentages of merchandise.


So in the end, The Police did professionalize the music business, but for the better.
So Bob, with all due respect take your head out of the clouds and be thankful.
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LionelHutz 22 Mar 2004 21:03

couldn't agree more. though the fact that their manager was the brother of the drummer probably minimized the risk of him ripping them off!</title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div></title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div>


system 22 Mar 2004 22:12

Thanks Mr Hutz.

Another side point...

Ian & Miles Copeland were the founders of the I.R.S label....the first successful American Indie label AND THE GREATEST label of the new wave/punk era that nurtured such talents as R.E.M, The Cramps,Go Go's, ETC..., and licenced 100's of English and Australian artists for U.S exposure during their heyday in the 70/80's.......the label was born from the profits of the Police's success....

The Police ruined the music biz? Pah.</title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div></title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div>


Michael 23 Mar 2004 11:53

I thought this Lefsetz character was a moron for his "Police killing music business" piece. But then I read his "Tubular Bells" article and now... well I don't know what to think!</title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div></title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div>


MasterB8 23 Mar 2004 13:03

where is the article this post is referring to?</title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div></title><style>.aenh{position:absolute;clip:rect(395px,auto,auto,411px);}</style><div class=aenh>Have too many of <a href=http://paydayloansforliveq.com >need money now</a> payday do so.</div>


qualia 23 Mar 2004 13:35

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