Clarence or 'Citizen Cope' has just gotten out of his major label recording contract, and I am posting what he had to say about the fact that he now will be going indie.
Clarence is one smart guy and deserves to be supported.
"It's a great pleasure to announce that after being signed to a major label
recording contract for the better part of 10 years, my obligations have been
fulfilled and my new recording, The RainWater LP, will be released on my own
label RainWater Recordings.
The practice of selling your intellectual property and likeness throughout
the Universe and in perpetuity (this means forever) in exchange for a
recoupable recording advance always seemed like an unfair business practice.
Regardless, artists have historically been forced to sign these contracts
because it was the dominant way to make, promote, and distribute music.
There are good people at record companies that love music and do a great
deal of good. Unfortunately, contracts only follow people who sign them.
Staff sizes have been reduced, promotional dollars tightened, and the labels
are no longer properly equipped to develop acts, monetize catalog, or even
protect copyrights. There isn't anybody home.
I've been very fortunate to write, produce, and release music from my
point-of-view and have these projects funded by various record labels. And
while their collective demise is unfortunate, the responsibility lies with
executives without ownership in their respective companies. A business that
should be artist driven is executive driven. People with vision and who
dream will fill the void left by Majors. People who love music and
understand its artistic and social value. Ones with long term goals not
quarterly profit concerns.
Some risk accompanies this decision. First, there are the financial costs
associated with making an album: studio time, hiring players, mixing,
mastering, pressing CDs, hiring a publicist, radio promotion, etc. Second,
I don't have "the machine" assisting the album¹s promotion and marketing.
Regardless, it's liberating to control both the way I'm represented and how
you receive the music. I hope you in turn share the music with your
friends, make mention of its release on your blog, twitter, or simply
sing-along at my shows.
It was a joy to make the record. I hope you enjoy it. It's my favorite