Dylan Jones: 'Today’s young consumers of recorded music are the most churlish generation in history'

Share
Related Topics

Books read on holiday often have a greater resonance than those we snatch at when we're busy working. This summer, my favourite book was Fortune's Fool by Fred Goodman, and it tells the story of how Edgar Bronfman, Jr, bought Warner Music and tried – so far, rather successfully – to turn it around.

Bronfman, the controversial heir to Seagram's, who, after dismantling his family's empire made a high-stakes gamble to remake both the music industry and his own reputation, and this is largely his story. However, the book also charts the decline of the CD market and the collapse of the traditional record company, and the way in which those companies have tried to initiate "360" deals with their artists, trying to siphon off monies from touring and merchandising.

"This whole system of 'give me your music for free, and I'll buy a T-shirt, and maybe I'll buy a ticket' – that kind of thing, you are begging recordings to go away," says Goodman. "All you're saying to the artist is, 'See if you can find a way to sell me a ticket and a T-shirt without losing a ton of money on a recording you won't make a dime on.' Frankly, I think recordings are valuable. And since they're valuable, we should find a way to value them. Otherwise, we're going to lose them."

Eleven years ago, when Napster shockingly made music available free online, the music industry found itself in a fight for its life. Over a decade later, having allowed a computer company to come and park its tank on their lawns – stand up Steve Jobs – the music industry still hasn't successfully remade itself, even though the likes of Bronfman have battled bravely on.

Having read Goodman's book I was left with the feeling that not only are today's young consumers of recorded music the most churlish generation in history, but that it is even more important that the notion of free entertainment be banished forever. Personally I've felt this way for ages – why should people read newspapers, listen to music and watch films for free? – and one can only hope that Goodman's lucid appraisal strikes more than a minor chord with some of those who obviously vehemently disagree.

Dylan Jones is the editor of 'GQ'

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Personal Tax Senior

£28000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Customer and Markets Development Executive

£22000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company's mission is to ma...

Recruitment Genius: Guest Services Assistant

£13832 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This 5 star leisure destination on the w...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Account Manager

£20000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Account Manager is requ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Seven per cent of young men have recently stopped using deodorant  

‘Sweaty-gate’ leaves a bad smell for PRs and journalists

Danny Rogers
Alison Parker and Adam Ward: best remembered before tragedy  

The only way is ethics: Graphic portraits of TV killings would upset many, not just our readers in the US

Will Gore
Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests
Mexico: A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life

The dark side of Mexico

A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life
Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde. Don't tell other victims it was theirs

Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde

Please don't tell other victims it was theirs
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border