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Since Radiohead seem to have acquired a reputation for being digital soothsayers, here’s band member Ed O’Brien speaking to upcoming Midem music conference…
“I have a problem when people in the industry say ‘it’s killing the industry, it’s the thing that’s ripping us apart’. I don’t actually believe it is … (Pirates) might not buy an album, but they’re spending their money buying concert tickets, a t-shirt, whatever.
“It’s an analogue business model in a digital era. The business model has to change. You’ve got to license out more music – have more Spotifys, more websites selling more music. You’ve got to make it slightly cheaper to get music in order to compete with the peer-to-peers.
“BitTorrent is very utilitarian, it’s deeply unsexy. The Richard Branson of nowadays would be able to set up a really amazing website for 14- to 24-year-olds that deals with their music … and do something really innovative and make it really easy for people to buy music, and cheap.
“A lot of 14-to 17-year-olds don’t have credit cards, so how are they going to get music digitally? These are very, very, very basic issues – I find it staggering that the industry seems to be really dragging its heels on this – this is stuff that you could do in one week. Move quicker!
“That’s been the whole problem in the last 10 years. Why are we here now? Because the recording industry dragged its feet over digital.”
I will be reporting from Midem this weekend.