Growing up in South Jersey, I didn’t know there was such a thing as a music business – it was just me and Barbara (Streisand that is) in my dining room with vinyl records and headphones. I just thought people sang through the radio and on stage. I never gave any mind to the massive machine behind the curtain. I wasn’t aware that you could track trends, study best practices, and redo what others had done before (only better) and rake in the big $$$.
Being a student of the music business for about 5 years now – I now know there is one and I’m pretty sure it’s continuing to evolve. In Arlen Roth’s blog for Gibson Guitars, he shares this:
You’d have to be living in a cave somewhere to have missed the fact of how much the music industry, among many other creative fields have changed these days. The older concepts of getting a record deal with a “major label” have certainly shifted, and the idea of going in a much more independent direction with your music has really take hold of most of us! It’s not to say there aren’t any major “deals” to be had out there, but the record labels, or what’s left of them, must be much more selective about who they sign and put money behind, since the buying public has also so radically changed from what it was before.
Just like the mom-and-pop corner stores have been threatened by shiny Super Walmarts, trailblazing record labels such as Sun Records seem to be almost nonexistent. If there is tension in every link of the chain (songwriters, publishers, artists, record labels, distribution, retail, etc.), then it wouldn’t be out of the question to realize that the corner record store is practically extinct too.
To bring awareness to the struggle, director C.Scott Shuffitt brings us Brick and Mortar and Love. This documentary follows the story of ear X-tacy Records, the legendary record store in Louisville, Kentucky, as it struggles to survive in the changing music retail industry. In-depth interviews include owner John Timmons, staff at ear X-tacy, leaders in the record store industry and scores of independent record store owners from all over the US. These interviews look into the state of the independent record store, what services they provide and what is at stake if they disappear. Brick and Mortar and Love has been added to the bill for the Nashville Film Festival – be sure to stop by and give this film a look!
Locally, there are a number of beloved record/second-hand CD stores, but none more infamous as Grimey’s on 8th Ave South. We can’t lose these cherished meccas of culture and music. Plan a trip to swing through Grimey’s music racks, listen to the music of an in-store concert, and make a night of it by heading downstairs to the Basement for a show – you won’t be disappointed.
WATCH THE TRAILER NOW FOR Brick and Mortar and Love