So it’s been a few months now and Adele’s album, 25 is still soaring above the clouds with the smash single “Hello “. It’s no surprise to me. The lady can sing, perform, write songs and look marvelous in a video. It would seem that her absence from the business and having a child didn’t hurt her a bit, as over one billion unique views to her YouTube video for Hello would suggest.
I make it a point to watch music videos which have over 999 million views for a reason – it’s what people want to see and hear and I want to know why that is. I usually enjoy or an flat out crazy for some of the songs which make it to the top in any genre, but I’m fascinated by the large numbers. And sadly I notice many incredibly popular artists who maybe land at 1-2 million views, such as Sir Paul McCartney’s last release, “ New “ which had this crazy-good song called “ Early Days “ which knocked me completely over with how well it was written and the great story in held within. Yet, there were like 400k views and I thought it was absurd that a billion music fans didn’t agree with me.
Then we examine Country music superstars like Miranda Lambert, Blake Shelton and Florida Georgia Line only to notice a trend; country music fans who go to the concerts don’t seem to get into YouTube and Vimeo anywhere close to the way that Pop, R&B and Hip Hop fans and buyers do. But when we see the Grammy’s or such awards shows it looks like everyone from Country to Rap are equal in the audience appreciation. And then I suppose that’s where organized hype comes in. The media which is backed by the record industry and mainstream radio want to make us think that all is well in the business but it’s just not so.
Recently I had a conversation with a marketing guru for a major foreign management company and I was informed that the music industry in North America is dead – that other major markets have been targeted in Asia and Europe. People just aren’t spending, buying the music in the states and Canada like they were just a few years ago. Vinyl sales however have tripled in NA in just one year! There haven’t been more turntables sold in the USA since the sixties!
But then the bottom line is Adele has sold 16 million copies of her latest album – many to the Americans and Canadians who love her. It’s a really great record in every aspect from the writing, singing, musicianship and especially the production and engineering. Everything is top tier like things used to be in the 60’s and 70’s. Carole King’s “ Tapestry “, The Beatles “ Sgt. Pepper “ and Pink Floyd’s “ Dark Side Of The Moon are still selling 40 years later. So are Willie Nelson records. So I’d have to say that the problem isn’t record sales are slumping, there’s just a lot more music being produced and a lot of it just can’t stand up. Not now, and certainly not decades on. It’s either good or it’s not.