Thursday, December 20, 2007

Radio owes Tom money

I'm not sure where this comes from, but Silicon Alley Insider quotes Tom Waits saying in an article about a bill before the American Congress which would make radio makers pay higher royalties to artists: 'It's just plain wrong for radio to be allowed to build profitable businesses with growing revenues on the backs of artists and musicians without paying them fairly for it.'

UPDATE: A Reuters newswire has some more background on this and makes it more clear where this quote comes from. Tom Waits is a founding member of the musicFIRST Coalition, an organisation supporting compensation for artists whose work is broadcast.  

1 comment:

Brian said...

Interesting article. Will it really help the artists though? Don't most major labels own the rights to artists' songs? If they do, maybe artists will see labels make even more $$ off their songs and they will switch to smaller independent labels. In the internet age, who the hell needs a major label?

I agree at one time radio served an important marketing outlet, which is why the rights owner wasn't compensated for a play. But that is no longer the case. And now, the artists/labels have all the power. What are the radio stations going to do, stop playing music?

Anyhow, there should be a law that terrestrial radio, satellite radio, and web radio all have the same deal with artists/labels. Right now the owner of a song doesn't get paid if it is played on terrestrial radio, but does get paid if it is played on web radio. It should be consistent through a "most favored nations" clause in the law.