Persona Digital

Music Studio Technology

Persona Studio

Music Business

While mostly everything changes, some aspects of human nature and experience never change. Music can be wonderful to play and enjoy as long as you have other means of support. Making money as a musician has always been difficult and uncertain. If you are an accomplished musician, a combination of incomes from performance, recording, and teaching can provide a decent living. Musicians have always created opportunities for others to profit more. Music is something like industrial raw material that creates subsidiary occupations and industries. Most of the money generated by musical performance and recordings goes to subsidiary industries.

Since hit singles became the goal of recording companies in the 1950's, frequent radio play was the route to popularity. The competition for radio play led to big business control of the airways, shady deals and some criminal involvement. In Aug. 4, 1958, Billboard magazine began to list the most popular 100 tunes based on sales and plays on jukeboxes and the radio. The first No. 1 it was Ricky Nelson’s "Poor Little Fool." Geoff Mayfield recalled: “If you found only one easy listening song in a college student's music library during the early '60s, it would have been Percy Faith's rendition of "Theme from 'A Summer Place.'" With a melody carried by Faith's orchestra string section, the instrumental entered the Hot 100 at No. 96 in the Jan. 16, 1960, issue and rose to No. 1. "Summer Place" enjoyed the hit longest popularity at the time, a record broken in 1968 when the Beatles' "Hey Jude" topped the chart for nine weeks, becoming the band's longest-running chart topper. No other instrumental to date has led the Hot 100 as long as Summer Place. Some of the hit makers became rich and famous but less lucky song writers and musicians remained poor. Recording companies grew richer, bigger and more autocratic.

Song structures and styles became standardized and most hit tunes followed a predictable form. Even today, a song writer should stay with the standard form and introduce only small innovations. I discuss the latest empowering technologies now available to musicians who come in all shapes and sizes. The technology allows growing number of people to create recording studios, manufacture CDs and distribute music as digital downloads on the internet. The term Indie (for independent recording label) by now includes millions of independent music producers world wide, each seeking a market share. The result is an explosion of recorded music never seen or heard before.

See True Value of Music Versus Celebrity

  • Topics presented at Persona Digital Studio are from the book,
    The Sound of Music
    by Stephen Gislason.
    Click the Download button to order the eBook 

  • Persona Mandala

    Persona Digital Studio is located on the Sunshine Coast, Sechelt, British Columbia, Canada.

    Persona Music Recordings: Our Music Catalogue includes recorded performances under the names P2500 Band, Em4U, and the Persona Classical Consort. Some music online is offered to illustrate music history, advance music education and appreciation. The recordings presented online demonstrate Persona Studio's composing, arranging, recording and mastering techniques. All the recordings are completed in house by Stephen Gislason.

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