Industry Ears

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24 Feb 2010

The Slow Painful Death of Radio

Listed under: News

The Slow Death of Radio
I just read a interesting article from one of the all time greats
David Hinckley of the New York Daily News. The article pointed to radio as the still surviving as the music video generation has come to a close at MTV and BET.

The funny thing is that the video outlets have smartened up and have migrated to original programming. Unfortunately radio and records continues to follow the same old model that has failed them for the past eight years.

There once was a day when radio execs ciphered through industry product, declining to play singles and opting for artist titles that massaged their ears and the local audiences they serve.

That era died with the advent of the music video. Radio began a marriage with the recording industry that should have ended in divorce almost 10 years ago. Big budget videos with theatrics and bling replaced talent. The change replaced sound with looks.

The big budget videos demanded big budget airplay and radio quickly complied. Top ten records in the late 90’s averaged 40 spins per station in any seven day period. One Los Angeles, station played one title an amazing 156 times in seven days.

The recording industry is still cheating behind radio’s back. You hear it over and over on air, almost like Chinese torture slowly making you gravitate for your Ipod, You Tube or Facebook. But radio still can’t say no to the recording industry and the marriage drags on.

The recording industry got what it wanted and now both radio and records continue to live in a crumbling house.

Let’s hope that ears return to the formula. There is a wealth of musical talent out there but nobody at radio or records is listening anymore.

Paul Porter
Industry Ears