Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Beginning Of The End Of The RIAA

The demise of the RIAA has been a long time coming, but a new music service, Amie Street, might speed up the process. Amie Street is the way music should be: DRM-free, market-priced, high quality, and legal. Founded in July, the site allows independent artists to sell and promote their music in an innovative and profitable way. All music on the site starts out free, and the price increases to a max of $0.98 per song based on popularity. About a month ago they signed a deal with Nettwerk Music Group, bringing mainstream artists such as Barenaked Ladies to the site.

If this isn’t the future of music, I don’t know what is. It’s perfect for browsing – they provide 85 seconds of preview for each song, which is important since so many of the artists are completely unknown. They have an effective recommendation model that rewards the customer for promoting quality content. They’re growing fast – just this week albums by State Radio, Hem, Griffin House, and Josh Rouse are being released (and even big names like these start out free). And best of all, the artists pocket 70% of their sales and not a penny goes to the RIAA. The only downside is that I know I’ll be spending a few hours a day this week discovering new music instead of doing something more productive like catching up on Tivo or playing FIFA.

Here are a few songs I heard for the first time and bought today from Amie Street. When you register they give you $1.00 for free, so I basically haven’t even spent any money yet. I also posted a few Griffin House songs, and his CD Upland will be released on the site tomorrow (along with Hem’s Funnel Cloud). Join today and help turn the slow, painful death of the RIAA into a fast (but hopefully still painful) one.

Patrick Park – Your Smile’s A Drug
Jack Zerby – Said
PrincetonThe Indifference Curve
Selfish Gene – Daylight Savings (had to get this for the band name, pretty good song though)
Jets Overhead – This Way
Griffin House – Tell Me A Lie
Griffin House – Waterfall


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