To truly understand the Internet one needs to read The Long Tail by Chris Anderson. After reading his book, I realized that all things before the Internet were time sensitive. As long as something was a “hit” there was space for it. Once it was not popular there was no space for it. Then came the Internet that made everything available, popular and unpopular alike. Everything had a space.
Before the Internet, in the day of splicing audiotape and duplicating cassettes, we were spending big bucks to get popular enough in hopes of a national distribution deal. It was an expensive proposition from the recording studio to final product. If not promoted properly the cassettes would end up in some musician’s closet forever. Quoting from The Long Tail; ‘the computer and ability for self publishing, whether it’s books, typing in a word processor, recording with a microphone, you didn’t have to go to a studio anymore to record your audio books; video is possible….’
A record label has to sell their products in high numbers in order to profit. We with computers became entrepreneurs. We could now record and had worldwide distribution virtually free. We became part of the long tail. Our music became our niche.
What we do with our niche is the difference between success and failure for our music. Great music sells itself. (You can quote me on that.) But if you have great music and no way of telling the world or a poor attempt at telling the world, you have failed your music.