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Topic ClosedMartin Orford August 2009

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 26 2009 at 06:52
Originally posted by Tony R Tony R wrote:

I hadn't read Jim's interview until now (nice job pal!) and I think Martin has done a great job in explaining it in layman's terms. He's not making it up, illegal downloading is killing the bands we love. We all have a duty to think twice about illegal downloading and certainly as consumers of music it is our duty to buy legal product. I'm no angel but I buy at least one Prog album a month as well as DVDs and special editions. Album sales are a fraction of what they were 10 years ago, the only thing that has changed is the arrival of the Internet and downloading culture. Rush's last studio album got to #3 in the Billboard Album Chart yet struggled to shift 100,000 units! Moving Pictures got to #3 in 1981 and went Multi-Platinum.Some struggling firms recently have asked their workers to work a certain amount of time for free, the majority have told them in no uncertain terms to get lost. Why should musicians work for free? They have a product and there is demand for it, why would they not want paying?


Why should musicians work for free? They have a product and there is demand for it, why would they not want paying?

This is the central point. Many people forget that music is a product that has been made by people, who have invested time and money in making it. Because music is entertainment, some people seem to think that it is their 'right' to be entertained for free. It's not. You wouldn't expect to pick up a car from a show room for free, or get an electricain out to re-wire your house for free. Why should a band go into a studio for months on end, at huge cost, to make an album for free? Because they love doing it?? Not a good enough reason I'm afraid. There's plenty of people who love their job, but you would never expect them to do it for free.

Get your wallets out or go without it. Simple.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 26 2009 at 14:00
I ordered a stack of IQ stuff from GEP by phone last year and Martin and I spent about an hour chatting about pubs/beer, cricket and music. He is a genuinely nice guy; honest and forthright.

He is also a very bitter guy; he has every right to be. Thieves (I don't give a pig's fart if anyone here is upset by the term - like Martin, I say it how I see it) who illegally download are depriving musicians like him of their livelihood and so many turn their back on music. That means we don't get new albums to enjoy; anyone who has The Old Road will be drooling for a follow up, but that's not going to happen.

My only disagreement with him is the place for non-downloadable samples as on sites like this. I listen to lots and several bands (Riverside, Phideaux and even IQ themselves amongst them) have sold albums to me on the back of my listening to them. Trouble is, some b*****d will almost certainly find a way of copying them and putting them on a free music site.

I'll add my voice to those who thank Martin for the great music he has made for us to enjoy and wish him all the best for the future. He deserves much better than he has at the moment.

(Oh, and I use mostly vinyl and have never downloaded ANYTHING, legally or otherwise, so no accusations of hypocrisy, please.)
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 26 2009 at 19:28
Martin Orford shrugs.

I haven't heard The Old Road or listened to any IQ beyond The Wake, but I can't help but feel sorrow for Orford.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 26 2009 at 20:20
Originally posted by Finnforest Finnforest wrote:

Re the analogy to taping in the old days, there is no comparison.  Yes, a few people stole back then too by illegally taping, but nothing near the magnitude of what is being ripped off now from artists.  Much easier to do now, many more people doing it than the tapers of the old days.  Millions more. Sorry to be blunt, but that's another weak justification. 


 


Chipping in with an old idea of mine in that department.

1. Legalize low quality samples to be spread (max 64 kb/s)
2. Open free hunt for anyone spreading files of higher quality

With the first in place the second would be accepted by the general public, and the martyrhood of the sharers would be history. While the low quality of the legal samples would leave an incentive to buy. Pretty much it would be like tape copies - nice to have but you would really WANT to have the CD instead due to sheer audio quality.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 27 2009 at 18:52
Thanks for the interview.
I'm sorry but my opinion of Mr.Orford has changed,
I feel he is ...Thumbs Down

IQ will be fine without you!
 
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 28 2009 at 02:23
Your opinion of course, but what in MO's interview changed it for the worse?

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 28 2009 at 15:21
Wasn't Mike Holmes the co-owner with Matin of GEP?

I would be interested to know the division of labor between them in GEP's affairs. I know the reason given why the Subterranea DVD was never released in NTSC format was the amount of time it took Mike to produce the PAL DVD.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 28 2009 at 17:23
Originally posted by Clepsydra Clepsydra wrote:

Thanks for the interview.
I'm sorry but my opinion of Mr.Orford has changed,
I feel he is ...Thumbs Down

IQ will be fine without you!
 


Will they?

Whilst I think Frequency is a brilliant album, and that Mark Westworth performs very well indeed, I get the impression that Martin Orford was heavily involved in the composition of the music. The question is - can the rest of the band write to the same high standard without Martin? I am not convinced they can.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 28 2009 at 18:11

I think it will be very telling when the next IQ album comes out, it should be obvious if what Martin says is true or not (I believe him).

And piracy is without doubt killing sales far more than it might be getting some new sales.  Just today I was doing some anti-piracy work and found the new Translatlantic album for download, they only just started shipping promo's the other day, it's just insane.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 02:00
I get occasional promos from EMI & they told me at the beginning that if any of these appear on illegal download sites, there is an embedded code on the promos which will allow them to identify exactly which promo was used for the upload.

Unsure whether this is true, but if it is, fair play to them.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 02:39
Yeah it's possible to do Jim, it's either expensive OR very time consuming (so expensive) but possible, although it's probably getting easier. 
We worked around this problem last year but not sending any promos. It was a massive risk, but it paid off,  we reached release date without any copies having been uploaded (even if the release date was 2 weeks after our fan weekend album launch) so were really proud of that achievement. Of course once release date arrived it started to spring up everywhere (even in some unlikely places) but reaching release date was quite a major achievement!

Isn't it sad, overwhelmingly sad a disapointing that by far the vast majority of albums don't even get that far before they get ripped off and chewed up?
It makes my toes curl when I hear people say "Oh but I'm such a big fan of "X" I HAD to D/L it before release because I simply couldn't wait any longer" Dead
What is wrong with people that they can't wait for an album?

I'm sorry to hear about Transatlantic Disapprove

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 03:06
Originally posted by Wilcey Wilcey wrote:

It makes my toes curl when I hear people say "Oh but I'm such a big fan of "X" I HAD to D/L it before release because I simply couldn't wait any longer"


Rough translation being "I'm such a fan of so and so band I'd rather steal from them than pay them for their work"

Is it any wonder MO took the decision he did?

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 05:54
Well, all of the blather above would be all good and well if file sharing actually did impact negatively on artists. Every single reputable study (from sources such as the Swedish Royal Technical Institute, the Dutch Government, The Canadian Government, Harvard University, The BI Norwegian Management School, the Danish Music Council etc.) shows that file sharing does not bring losses to artists on the whole, but rather the opposite.

There are some losses, at the very top of the field and in the distribution chain (although this latter loss is probably due to record companies being resolutely luddite and eagerly litigious for the last ten years), but everyone else sees gains from file sharing.

So, whatever the reason is for Martin making less money and IQ's sales dropping, it's highly unlikely that file sharing is to blame, except possibly indirectly as the genre itself may have flourished from file sharing, making their effective market share much smaller. That's just speculation on my part, though.

The market share of the Big Five record companies has dropped from 90% to about 70% in ten years, as people are exposed to more obscure artists using the internet. As Guardian Music wrote about King Crimsons' debut today: "The revival of interest in an album that has been scarcely fashionable from the late 70s through to the 90s is partly due to online filesharing."

Now, don't get me wrong, I absolutely think you should pay artists whose work you enjoy, but I am also aware that forcing everyone to do that means dismantling the internet, and outlawing large portable hard drives and USB sticks. It's a price no one in their right mind should be willing to pay. If you want to turn the internet into a one-way communication channel where Big Media just feeds the consumer prepackaged Pussycat Dolls and Idol winners, then by all means, draft laws to spy on everyone so that the lumbering media companies don't have to change and adapt to the times.

What any smart band needs to do today is factor file sharing into their business plan. As someone noted above, you can offer presales of albums to fans, but there are loads of other methods for monetizing your art in a world where it can be easily found for free. Goodwill and convenience are the watch words; making fans want to pay you and giving them the incentive to do so. It requires a rethink, yes, but any moderately creative mind should be able to handle that. Just look at Trent Reznor, Jonathan Coulton, Amanda Palmer (who has made more auctioning off stuff online than from the record company for her self-financed album) or even The Arctic Monkeys (who managed to have their massively file shared debut become the fastest selling debut in UK history).

If you have fans, you treat them well and think outside the box you can make money. It's really not that hard.

Originally posted by Hercules Hercules wrote:


Whilst I think Frequency is a brilliant album, and that Mark Westworth performs very well indeed, I get the impression that Martin Orford was heavily involved in the composition of the music. The question is - can the rest of the band write to the same high standard without Martin? I am not convinced they can.


From what I understand, Martin wasn't that great a part of the composing for The Seventh House, which is a great album and his solo stuff also points to them being just fine without him.

Also, if he doesn't miss playing music and hardly even listens to it...well, I think he's better off doing something else, to be honest. Bitterness is always sad to see, no matter what the source, but its especially sad when it is in large part based on a fallacy.


Edited by Teaflax - September 29 2009 at 06:15
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 08:53
Teaflax - like any study or poll you can always arrive at the results that you want.  There are a variety of contributing factors to decreasing sales, and Piracy is at the top of the list, simple fact is people just do not buy it after they get it for free except in rare and rapidly diminishing cases.  In the early days of Napster a great many people use downloading as a preview method, now, you talk to most young people and they actually think that because they can find music online, that it is actually free, they don't even know they are stealing.  I've got dozens of nieces and nephews in their teens and 20's and I've had to correct this behavior with a lot of them.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 09:13
No, you cannot arrive at any result you want if you're a reputable and unbiased source, especially if the numbers are available for review, which is exactly the status of all these cases. And in none of these studies was the stated goal to prove anything specific, but simply to look at how things actually are. Are you saying Harvard University, The Royal Technical College of Sweden, The Dutch Government et. al. have a vested interest in making file sharing seem harmless?

If you're right,  scientists should just stop doing studies, because what's the point?

The reason many young people feel the way your nieces and nephews do is because the legal alternatives haven't been there until recently (and even then, they're seriously flawed), and we have a generation that has grown up with illegal downloading being far easier and more convenient than any legal alternatives. That's entirely at the door of the media companies who've been trying to fight technical developments as far back as the advent of the radio and the record player.

When Jack Valenti of the Motion Picture Association of America said that "The VCR is to the movie industry as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone" he was as dead wrong as the old record company saw of "home taping is killing music".

Also, it is not stealing. It's copyright infringement. You might as well call it murder if you're going to play fast and loose with the terminology.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 09:40
On a lighter note, I just listened to Martin's first solo album for the first time and I thought that it was quite good.  It fits in nicely with the entirety of the IQ discography.  I legally downloaded it from eMusic, so hopefully, Martin will at least see some of those proceeds come his way.  Maybe it will buy him a cup of tea or something.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 10:03
For once in my life I'm agreeing with Teaflax!Shocked
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 10:05

If you get something, for free, that is not available for free, then it is stealing.  Digital alternatives have been around for plenty long enough, you seem to be an apologist for the thief culture.  If the thieves didn't put it up to begin with then people couldn't get copies, I'm all for extrememly harsh punishment of people who upload music and film, I'm talking multi-year prison sentences, because if you have the very real possibility of going to jail for a long time for doing it, you won't do it, at least most people won't.

Let me tell you how you manipulate polls and studies.  You take a small sample that isn't representative of the community at large to arrive at the results you want to get, it's simple and it happens all the time.

Rushfan4 - eMusic sucks for the artists, they see a payment of maybe a penny because of the model, we stopped putting our material on there, it wasn't worth it.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 10:06
Originally posted by Teaflax Teaflax wrote:

No, you cannot arrive at any result you want if you're a reputable and unbiased source, especially if the numbers are available for review, which is exactly the status of all these cases. And in none of these studies was the stated goal to prove anything specific, but simply to look at how things actually are. Are you saying Harvard University, The Royal Technical College of Sweden, The Dutch Government et. al. have a vested interest in making file sharing seem harmless?

If you're right,  scientists should just stop doing studies, because what's the point?

The reason many young people feel the way your nieces and nephews do is because the legal alternatives haven't been there until recently (and even then, they're seriously flawed), and we have a generation that has grown up with illegal downloading being far easier and more convenient than any legal alternatives. That's entirely at the door of the media companies who've been trying to fight technical developments as far back as the advent of the radio and the record player.

When Jack Valenti of the Motion Picture Association of America said that "The VCR is to the movie industry as the Boston strangler is to the woman home alone" he was as dead wrong as the old record company saw of "home taping is killing music".

Also, it is not stealing. It's copyright infringement. You might as well call it murder if you're going to play fast and loose with the terminology.
Same old rubbish.  We'll keep calling them thieves as long as they perpetuate the myth that this is somehow not as bad as old fashioned theft.  It is.  And it does hurt the artists despite your studies.  You have people posessing music (the fruit of labor) that they didn't pay for.  Frame it any way you like, it's never going to pass the sniff test with people of common sense. 

Edited by Finnforest - September 29 2009 at 10:17
she's my little rock n roll, yeah....
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 29 2009 at 10:08
Originally posted by BigBoss BigBoss wrote:

Rushfan4 - eMusic sucks for the artists, they see a payment of maybe a penny because of the model, we stopped putting our material on there, it wasn't worth it.

 
Damn.  That sucks.  I was under the impression that it would be similar to downloads from elsewhere or CD purchases.  Why would any bands put their music on there then?  It doesn't seem as though there would be any incentive to do so.
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