Mon, 23 Jun 2003 17:40:42 GMT

Bands Upset That People Aren’t Forced Into Buying Their Bad Songs Too. Now that Apple’s iTunes has been getting lots of publicity from some who think it’s the “right way” to offer music downloads (something I don’t really agree with, but that’s an unnecessary tangent), some musical acts are complaining that they don’t want their songs sold individually. They’re demanding that if their tunes go up on something like iTunes, they can only be sold if people buy the entire album. Of course, what they’re really saying is that they know they can’t come up with enough good songs that people would want to buy them all. I would have a lot more support for a band that gave their fans enough credit to let them buy songs on an individual basis – and believe that their music is good enough to entice people to download all their songs. In the meantime, what’s probably happening is that any of the bands who require “full album only” are going to make less money than they would have otherwise. The folks who have no interest in their full-length album, are likely to just turn to the free file sharing systems to get the one or two songs they like (or simply not buy at all), keeping the money away from the musicians entirely.

If they write good songs, people would buy the entire album. Apple says something like 50% of the downloads have been whole albums anyway. It usually turns out my favorite song is not one of those that get a lot of airplay. Once these groups reaize that being able to continually release singles, say 1 a month, instead of releasing an album every year or so, may get them more money that putting together an entire album.