Posts Tagged ‘australia’

song not included in x-files “I want to believe” official sound track yet in the soundtrack

July 30, 2008

My song did not make the cut for the x-files soundtrack. Its interesting how it all works.. and to see that it really is the way that the worst nightmare explains to you how it is.

why am i saying this?
About 3 years ago i decided i would not be a part of the music industry, and so i went on that path. i bumped into creative commons and then saw the potential of making whats created free. if i’m in a place far away from something and people demand i’m in another place, is it worth it? you do what you do and you are what you say you are.

its interesting how people say how great it is that your song is in a major flick. its interesting that the song does not make the soundtrack, especially as i would have licensed it to the soundtrack label for next to nothing for use. maybe the production quality was sub standard from decca records point of view, yet the soundtrack did include remixes of songs and final track in the film. Universal music had previously licensed my song for free goto this link. the film use is great, yet the reality seems that the people that are going to find out about the use of the song are the people that i bump into or if i blog or tag it. i can pay a publicity person to promote me, yet where are the sales going to come from to pay the publicity person if the tunes are free? if i was included on the sound track it would be different.

As the song was not on the soundtrack, i started on the path of posting a single of of the tune on i-tunes, via cdbaby. Although the tunes are free anyway. some would say, well why post it on i-tunes…if people expect something to be somewhere, its a good idea to put it there… that’s the way i see it. if something is worth something, its cool that they pay for it… keep in mind that the reason the songs are free is partly also because the industry gave the songs no value…

The orchard who i paid 150 dollars 4 years ago to promote the album listed it next Jerry Seinfeld in their catalog and in that time i’ve sold less than 25 dollars worth of downloads, at least it was not exclusively next to Jerry Seinfeld. What was i supposed to do? wait for the big wave and remain loyal to the music business, i made it free cause i wanted people to get the tunes.

as a result of my songs being with a creative commons license people do get to hear the tunes, the intro music in this youtube clip shows the potential of the license.

A couple of hundred million people are going to hear about a minuet of recorded music i created in cinemas, cable, TV, yet still only 5-10 people are going to arrive to see a live performance sometimes. i have not sold one cd since the film has been out.

to go on…
i put this single together for i-tunes, i was not able to use the word “soundtrack” in the tittle of album as “soundtrack” and “x-files” is owned by Decca records/fox, i would have to create a license for that to happen… to go on further.. can i use an image from the fox film with the release of the single to i-tunes…? no fox’s images are under a strict copyright…can i make a license with fox to use their image in conjunction with a cd single?.. no response yet.

i best be more happy about the use. maybe i had some expectation of something, yet even when i sent an email to fox here in Prague, they did not respond. If i was in the soundtrack they might have.

anyway, i reckon its worth saying all this. maybe i’ll get back from that far away mountain sometime. artists and musicians best understand this about the music business though. if you do want to get your music onto a popular soundtrack released by the likes of Decca in conjunction with a popular film. best that you remain with a business model that integrates into the current system. If you go against that union of publishing corporations that put a block on all culture, be prepared for the consequences.

The big corporations do not work on terms that relate to market conditions it seems, its appears as if a mafia from the smallest amount pirated from the business to the largest dollar sucked from the consumers pocket. Don’t be worried about corporations using tunes or photo content free via a creative commons license. Putting a CC license on whats created, that allows commercial use is good way to fight back and allow new business to evolve, that does have a fair spirit. Don’t expect to find to much humanity in the entertainment industry as it is.

For universal music to put you on a compilation with a global release, they would have to own you. Its just the way it is, i sent my cd to universal music in Australia and it was rejected. I would never sign with this kind of company. I gave them a free license to distribute my songs in Poland. They could have negotiated a free license to use my song on the soundtrack. Its sad that art that is part of a film soundtrack can’t make the released film soundtrack, even the use could have be negotiated for free.

 

*** to add to this blog, i found out that i was not able to send out a single as i did not read the fine print on the contract when i paid the Orchard 150 dollars to release my songs through i-tunes. You see according to the Orchard what is non-exclusive has changed in the last years. They claim i have a non-exclusive exclusive. Anyway the result is that my songs have been taken down from the Orchard. I no-longer distribute the tunes through i-tunes or any paid digital networks. The tunes are available for free on my site and a couple of other services where i can make them free for download.  Even if self published artists do really sell music through i-tunes/Orchard, my thoughts are at the moment that these funds are being tunneled into the pockets of executives that work within the Orchard and labels around the catchment area.

open as in

January 31, 2008

thoughts on how open-source is kind of tribal.

Stories may have been attributed for a while, yet most things would have formed some kind of common knowledge. Yet the knowledge might have had levels of access. Tribes might have stayed mostly in the same areas of Australia (from what i was told), the language of the north is said to be different to that of the south. Over time the tribes probably knew just about everything there was to know about the place they roamed/lived, and that knowledge would have belonged to the tribe, yet how can we really know how the koori people of Australia lived ? explorers prior to the first fleet might have brought sickness.

No one owns the dreamtime. plenty of great stories that the tribes tell (are these open source?). I spose its hard for a culture that has been so abused to open up though. One story is how the gods got angry a long time ago and turned this tree upside down. Boab tree. cool pic

the koori people see god as being in everything ( i heard) where as the christian sees god as only being in the christian (is that right?). I’ve heard koori’s also believe that everything from white man comes from beneath the ground. They are kind of right these days with that, with all the oil, metal and stuff that makes up the world, that binds our society together.

I kind of figure that Koori (koori is a better used word than aboriginal as aboriginal was a forced term) culture is open (or at least was among the tribes long ago) It would be interesting to collect stories and license them with an open license.

story of aboriginal people

January 30, 2008

the interesting thing about the aboriginal people in Australia is that no treaty was ever signed between the two cultures. In New Zealand yes, yet Australia no. This means that if the tribe/person can claim a tie to the land they can call that land theirs. marbo decision. The kurri people had boundaries that divided tribes that no white man could understand. So treaties were considered to be not possible. well that is one excuse i heard. In Tasmania, every aborigonal person died.

The australian government refuses to say sorry to stolen generation or admit any wrong past action. (although in 2008 they did this) If (now) the Government does, they are admitting liability. Under the laws the english brought to the land the kurri people still own the land, kind of weird ay. Kurri people only represent about 5 percent of the population now, if that.

what i heard: Kurri people were shot up until the 1930′s, kurri’s were considered to be a part of the nature by many farmers. I heard farmers were given licenses to cull the population upto the 1930′s. The kurri people are said to have seen the cattle as an easy meal. So the cattle were seen to have more value than that of the life of kurri person, even though some fought in the WW1. Also: drovers = (old time truck drivers) took young girls and cut their hair short. They were known as drovers boys, when a drovers boy got pregnant they were dropped on the side of the road and the drover pick up another from the next town or mission. This was happening not so long ago. I’ve also heard that even in the 60′s if a white man killed a kurri, nothing much would happen to that person. The person would just have to say that the kurri person was trying to steal “their” car. In the 80′s many kurri people are said to have hung themselves in jail, many say the police did this. These were cases known as black deaths in custody.

Some facts i heard: more english soldiers were killed by Aboriginal gun fire than English solders died in the bore war. The first Australian cricket team that played in England were all kurri people (they have a picture of the team in a county in the UK). Both these facts are not found in our history though plus many more, i spose that would make it not fact.

When i travel and see what the aboriginal people have now to what they had prior to white man. I’m quite certain it was better. Even when white man arrived with the first fleet in 1788 much of the population might have died before that because of contact with previous explores from Europe. Who knows what life was like in Australia prior to white settlement. These people lived on the land for how long, who knows? I imagine Kurri people understood a lot about the land they lived on and the secrets within that land, some probably still do.

kurri people understand things that white people might never understand. I reckon the system we grow up in makes us like bricks, the minds of the original people must have flowed like the rivers. The loss and continued oppression of this culture is really sad for me, especially as a white person born in Australia. The lack of respect for what is left, makes the situation worse. The total lack of eduction about the real history of Australia makes Australia a shallow nation.

I have to check out all these things i wrote, yet all these things above other people have told me at different times of my travels. These people seemed sure about these things, so who’s truth is truth.

Artists Right to distribute- work in progress

January 22, 2008

When media in Australia uses works licensed with a Creative Commons Attribution licences the media is given no rebate by the rights organisation. My view is that if commercial media did get a reduction when they used open content, that the market would be more efficient. More local self published content would be used and publishers might take their ears out of their pockets.

My understanding is that commercial media in Australia pays for the use of much of their content this way: Media is issued with a blanket licence to use any content they choose and provides details of what they use to the rights organisations. Users pay a fee that is distributed via the rights organisations to the publishers and artists that created that content.

Things are different in the U.S. In the U.S artists are able to deal directly with media and licence content as they choose and remain members of a rights organisation. This means that Creative Commons Attribution licences are able to be incorporated into the media in the U.S with some success. Consider also: In Australia artists are not able to sell a song, in the U.S artists can. Artists members in Australia must maintain 50 percent of what they create. Different moral rights apply to content in different countries. No glove fits all yet the net crosses many boundaries.

These double standards give the U.S media the ability to steam roll its content globally. Big name acts like Madonna take much of the media’s attention? Are feet getting cold as a result of over exposure of these acts? Do they create the best content?

Rights organisations provide content at one price, this creates conditions where both commercial and non-commercial media shall most likely always use content owned by a publisher, rather than that of a self publisher. Even when the self publisher can show that she or he created content to the media. Almost all artists associated with rights organisations are self publishing artists.

Most artists that can create a song and sing that song in a public place join a rights organisation, why? I reckon its because of the live performance royalties received when they perform a song. Some self publishing artists might tell the rights organisations that they are performing content they created, when really they are singing songs owned by a publisher. This can increase the live performance returns of that artist. Rights organisations create conditions where artists are encouraged to create content that is similar to content already published.

Woody Guthrie wrote the following message in the 1930’s:

“This song is Copyrighted in U.S., under Seal of Copyright #154085, for a period of 28 years, and anybody caught singin’ it without our permission, will be mighty good friends of ours, cause we don’t give a dern. Publish it. Write it. Sing it. Swing to it. Yodel it. We wrote it, that’s all we wanted to do.”

Imagine that copyright is now maintained for over 50 years after death. Much of Bob Dylan’s work would be public now under the conditions of the 1930’s. Copyright keeps on being extended to serve a minority of created works. Is culture better with this extension of author rights and artists not having to register their works?

Artists are often under the illusion that the rights organisations protect their works from theft. If someone steals your art and calls it theirs, its not their job to protect it. Rights organizations collect when your content is performed.

Consider that much of the content used in Australia comes from the U.S. Consider also this: The person with the most steam in the popular music scene might be the programming director of the alternative national youth radio network JJJ, JJJ is a government funded radio network. If most of the exposure that flows into independent music culture comes through government funding, this creates a difficult arts scene.

The way the voting system works for the board of APRA (apra is the Australian rights organization): For every 500 dollars that an artist or publisher collects the artist or publisher get an extra vote. The board is made up by artists that create works for television, popular artist and the publishers that collect the most. Half of the board is made up of publishers and half are creators of content. Albert music who publish ACDC’s music are able to put themselves on the board. Board members are making decisions mainly in the interests of publishers. Board members can’t be expected to make decisions that benefit culture, artists or the arts scene. They are more likely to make decisions that creates better conditions for a karaoke bar than self publishing of art.

I reckon the organisations that keep a check on these monopolies (the ACCC in Australia) must spend a lot of time figuring out how they are able to justify the existence of structures like APRA. When these organisations fail, what shall take their place?

Myspace have their own blanket license system. Myspace are able to collect music content and sell advertising space without paying the artists for use of their content. Almost every popular band in the world must be on Myspace. Even APRA have endorsed myspace by creating their own profile. All live venues and media in Australia have to comply with APRA policy, yet Myspace does not. These double standards create conditions only big venues and big media can stay in step with. Small clubs shut down. Internet radio is also not possible in Australia, only streaming of content from above ground networks.

When I joined APRA (Australian Performing Rights Association) I thought that the organisation was similar to a post office. I cancelled my membership when I realized that APRA was far from anything like a regular post office. Rights organisations create conditions so that publishers can communicate the message of published artists best. With the internet and new technologies here, more is being created. Why can’t what we create be used by media in conjunction with popular media to the advantage of that media. Its seems that works created by few are creating unfair conditions for all.

The community benefits when artists are able to self publish. If Creative Commons licences can be used by media in Australia (and other countries) with an incentive for media to use that content, culture would improve (I reckon). Some might drop their graffiti cans and be more interactive. Many artists give up on art because of the brick wall the rights organisations create. Other artists start out creating art for the community, end up scoring films and making content for commercials. Free Culture and Creative Commons is part of the solution.

Last FM Creative Commons

November 29, 2007

A couple of months back this thread started on a last FM’s forum. Today I noticed that last.fm in conjunction with Mozilla is sponsoring an event that celebrates five years of Creative Commons.

Now if an artist, label or publisher tags their song with the words Creative Commons, the song goes into the Creative Commons charts. Read this thread for more information. For now artists or net labels are not able to upload using any type of Creative Commons licenses; a Creative Commons chart within last.FM’s system is a good step forward.

How last FM works ?

Type in the name of your favorite artist… into the last FM search engine. You are then taken to a page that says “Now playing:… Similar Artists”. The first track you listen to is the artist you choose, then to similar artists, example. The user has the option of clicking on a heart button to say weather they like the track playing or not, by doing this you create your own play list. The next artists playing is a different artist and so on. Each band or artist playing has a buy link that the listener can visit. Last FM has no advertising brakes, this sets last.fm apart from all other forms of music radio media.

Last.fm’s revenue.

Last Fm’s revenue comes from banners and preferences given to content played.

Information from last.fm’s website.

* 100 impressions for $20.00
* 500 impressions for $100.00
* 1,000 impressions for $200.00
* 2,000 impressions for $400.00

Book a Powerplay campaign to target a set amount of radio plays for a track to a specific group of users. After you’ve run your Powerplay campaign, you will be able to access statistics of how your track has been received.

Pay and be heard.

Artist’s label’s and publisher’s are able to “pay and be heard” on last FM. In Australia it is illegal to “pay and be heard” on radio. Its the responsibility of a programmer to decide what is played and what is not. A publisher, artist or label is able to bring content to the station. Its upto the radio network to pay the programmer to do her or his job. Last FM may be just a little closer to the reality of the music business.

Rights for use of content?

Last.fm have to pay the rights organizations for use of content, last.fm does not ask the artist when they become a member of their service, if they are a member of a rights organization or not. This means last.fm most likely pay a blanket license fee for the use of content. When an artist not with a rights organization is being played on last.fm, last.fm still pay for use of that content. Its possible that a fair chunk of last.fm’s revenue goes towards paying rights organizations. How are the rights organizations going to react when Creative Commons content is played via last.fm in non-profit spaces. If these organization only play content from the CC last.FM charts they be in a situation where they would not have to pay for use of this content.

A self publishing artist using last FM, why?

The last.fm system looks to support the established publishing/label industry. The system gives the opportunity for un-known artists to tap into the fan bass of a well-known established artists with a similar style and possibly sell music through i-tunes, paypal, cdbaby, amazon…. For an artist to be heard beyond the community of people that she or he comes in direct contact with, seems to be an expensive process. Creative Commons charts could change this.

Free culture & rights organizations?

People like music without hearing advertisements. With wifi moving everywhere is last.fm going to last? As the last.fm system gets more and more popular, the cost for the use of content might go up. Listening to radio without having commercial brakes gives last.fm a competitive edge in the market place, this might be seen as un-fair. Are publishers, artists & labels (companies that use banners) going to bring in enough revenue to pay for the use of this content? Could last.fm be shut down by the right organizations?

Music business.

The music business looks to have turned from the exploitation of the public for revenue to that of the “self publishing” artist. The explosion in artistic content created, fueled by the net and an explosion in technology, makes the exploitation of unrealistic dreams a good business. Its good business for the music business to maintain low standards of content within the market. “Pay and be heard”, pay this and our festival might consider you for a performance. Pay 20 dollars for your song to be reviewed. Put three songs on an album written by famous artists so public might find your content on i-tunes. Where does free-culture fit into all this?


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