What is the music industry?
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What is the music industry?

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What is the music industry?

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What is the music industry?

Have your research out and ready.


Today’s aims:

To review the record label research

To understand the types of exam questions for section B

To know and understand relevant audience theories


Audience/industry power relationship

Supply and demand

Does the supply create the demand?

Or is the demand created by the supply?

Or is it an element of both?


Adorno – Philosopher of Music 1940s


came up with the hypodermic needle or hypodermic syringe model.This is the theory that an intended message is given out to the audience, and the audience accepts it unquestioningly. This is based on the audience being passive and absorbing whatever the media throws at them.


How this translates into the music world

Take The BeatlesThey were blown into this huge phenomenon by their record label, publicists and the media and they became one of the most popular bands of all time.The demand for them was created by the OTT supply. The public came to believe that you loved The Beatles.


John Fiske – 1980s

Fiske presented the idea at this point that in fact it was the audience controlling the media.

The media and music industry began tailoring the artists and products based on the desires of the potential audience.

Supply was now being created by demand.


With the rise of drugs associated with partying, a new culture was born.


The music industry latched onto this, creating music that fit perfectly with a raver’s state of mind.


David Gauntlett – 2010sMaking is connecting

This is a much more modern theory born out of our ‘online’ culture.This works with the idea of the audience as both consumers and producers of mediaThe idea that the audience creates the media.


One direction – Simon Cowell

This modern theory fits in terms of YouTube, Spotify

etc – you are part of the production, marketing and distribution of music.It has issues however with bands such as One Direction. Audience voted through X Factor : Audience controlling media which fits. Advertised and promoted by media in a Beatles way – similarities in images.X Factor is advertised and pushed upon the audienceSimon Cowell – massively influential – all about gain.Who really is in control of(to blame for)One Direction’s success?


Relation to exam

Link theories to case studies for the record labels and artists

Decide which theory fits best in terms of marketing and distribution.

Learn names and links in order to bring in when discussing the case studies in your exam.