We all know the music industry hes been fledgling for some time, and unless their distribution method changes quickly, things will not look any better. Radiohead shocked the industry by self releasing their new album, In Rainbows, as a “pay for what it’s worth to you” type mentality, and even more recently Nine Inch Nails gave away their new album The Slip totally free as a high quality download. The industry is changing has changed; in the course of the last 10 years, the general public has discovered illegal downloading, and even with the RIAA peeking their ugly heads in the form of litigation, downloading is here to stay. Having said all that, there is a new music money-maker in town, luckily not in the form of boy bands and Hannah Montana, no, it is a video game: Guitar Hero/Rock Band. A game almost everyone between the ages of 5-65 are undoubtedly familiar with, I don’t think you realize this; the music industry is pulling a fast one:
“But “Guitar Hero” and “Rock Band” have prompted kids born in the ’90s to discover artists from the ’70s and ’80s such as Aerosmith, Twisted Sister and Pat Benatar. The games’ amazing popularity — last year, the two brought in more than $935 million in revenue, according to the NPD Group market research company — has helped create success in other markets, according to observers.”
Actually, I love the fact that kids are finding out about these great bands early on in life. It’s a win-win; the record industry get their kickbacks from licensing, and kids (and adults alike) are being introduced/reacquainted to some of the best bands/artists in history (David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Aerosmith, The Pixies, The Smashing Pumpkins, Black Sabbath, Cream, The Ramones, Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and the list could go on forever). Not only are they promoting great rock bands, but they are putting instruments in their hands. You say, “sure, but they are fake instruments”, but I don’t think you realize the mind of a child. They are going to want to learn to play guitar like Jimi, bass like Flea, and drums like Neil Pert (drum solo of life? anyone?). Yes, the potential for big business ruling music again is daunting, but this is different, this is making people excited about music again. I choose to think this is making a difference, for the sake of my ears, because if I have to see one more white kid in his lowered Cavalier on 20’s blasting the latest Three Six Mafia album, I may just spontaneously combust.
“The results have played out at such places as Roosevelt High School in Los Angeles, where most teens have grown up on a steady diet of hip-hop and R&B. Recently, heavy metal blared from the school’s darkened auditorium as it sponsored a three-day “Guitar Hero Face-Off.” Spotlights illuminated the competitors, and an audience full of enthusiasts screamed wildly at the end of each song.”
If that doesn’t give you goosebumps, dear God it should.