The Importance of Free Music

The music industry is an interesting topic to discuss among artists, bloggers, fans, and labels. Much of the discussions can get heated, considering each person has a very different, but passionate opinion. While there are a number of things that I feel as though the labels are wrong about, one portion I think they need to get on board with is free music. Some are now understanding its value, but others not so much.

You ever wonder how some of these indie/DIY artists gain such a legion of fans and have such a devoted following? The power of free shit. Since starting this blog last year I have seen tons of bands and artists have success, while others not as much as they should. The difference I noticed is the free music that was made available. Of course being talented will help get fans as well, because no one wants shitty music for free. Am I right? Yet, a lot of artists and labels need to see the value of free music. Actually, many artists and bands are starting to get that, but some labels I'm not sure they get it. Take for instance Drake. Although at his level free music isn't going to gain him more fans, he posted a free track or two and no sooner than he did that, the labels took it down. Really? Like that would effect his sales (600,00+ in one week). And then his new album leaked anyway, so yeah.

To me, free music is what gets people interested, because they don't lose money on something they are not sure about. But also, as I've said, people love getting free stuff that is awesome. Giving away music is going to get you attention, good attention. Look at e-dubble, the guy has been giving tons of free music out and has no major label backing him. Yet, he has 20k + Facebook fans, blogs eat his music up, and his downloads are through the roof. Yet, he also has a few songs you can buy and people are willing to support the guy. He is one example. Look at Mac Miller, no matter how you feel about him, he sold 140k+ with his debut on a indie label. Before that, did he have any music to buy? Nope, everything he dropped was free mixtapes. People are more willing to give the music a listen and share it with friends if it is free, and if people find it dope, that only expands the love for the artist. Miller should be the best example for labels to see the power of free music and indie love.

Artists who might bitch about not making money need to realize shows and merchandise will be the biggest source of income. Being creative and giving stuff out for free will only strengthen the core fan base. But if you're main concern right away is money, then you probably should not be making music.  Again, I get the need for the labels and musicians to make money for a living, but offering some free music in the beginning can really boost the fan base, which in turn can generate more sales.


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