Back in the days of the Roman Empire, music was a sacred and classical art that reflected the traditions of a civilization. More than 1500 years later, music has taken a new role in our society, transcending the category of art and blending it with popular trends, cultural identity and sheer entertainment sought by our consumer culture.

The cost of music can be equalled to the stock market – unstable at times, profitable and inevitably cut throat. Despite these factors music will continue to be a free market.

The price of music will continue to fluctuate between the reasonable price range of $10-$20, depending on the work put into by the label, marketing and promotion costs and aims of the band.

Fortunately for the executives, the digital era has allowed the promotional process to cut down on slowly disappearing packaging costs as artists release more of their music in digital format.

Despite all this, the price of music will be regulated as it always has – with the purchasing power of the independent consumer which is manipulated and controlled by the industry’s facets of marketing.

The music industry is the entertainment business’ two-way street. Artists make music and in turn rely on the executive music, film and advertising industries to propel and sell their record turning profit. Writers, editors, promoters, marketers, engineers, DJs and others all have pivotal roles in “breaking” a record.

The distribution of profits for a record depends on the parties’ involvement in making and selling the record. Yes, I said it – selling, because it is that one factor that defines the character of the industry.

While the band may work hard on a record, it is their label, which is also their promotional backbone, that works extremely hard, sending thousands of mail-outs to radio, contacting DJs, calling radio stations and running street teams.

Encouraging a better relationship between the artist and the label will encourage a healthier and more adequate pay scene for the industry.

Regardless of the industry’s efforts, the consumer should not ignore the millions of dollars in publishing labels reap in, nor let Apple conveniently slide away with a 52 cent cut on a 99 cent song. If both of these aspects were addressed that would make music cheaper, and in turn would give the artists more of their well-deserved earnings.

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