‘Free the music and your cash will follow,’ Kaskade speaks out against major labels
When Kaskade’s SoundCloud received an onslaught of take down notices for not only his mash-ups, but a handful of his own originals, fans reeled at what could be the end of an era in dance music. What has always been an industry driven forward by creative expression has since been tainted by major labels who are unaware, unwilling, or unable to adapt to the way music is distributed and consumed in the digital age, and Raddon’s latest run-in with the IP police is just the tip of the iceberg. For years dance music has been a shining example of an art for art’s sake arrangement between its artists, labels, and fans, but those days may very well be lost in the endless pursuit of profit. As little as 3 years ago, bootlegs were encouraged, mash-ups launched careers, and the idea that the music “belonged” to anyone existed in a very grey area. Now, as dance music becomes a pop culture phenomenon and ingrains itself in our culture and our wallets, the rules are quickly changing and what was once par for the course is now, quite simply, out of the question.
In a post titled “brb… Deleting SoundCloud,” Kaskade discusses the finer points of the debate on intellectual property, acknowledging that in a black-and-white world he was most certainly in the wrong, but that doesn’t mean he was actually wrong. Instead the fault lies on the “old men” who are only interested in seeing their bottom line grow, dinosaurs from an analog era failing to adapt to a digital way of thinking.
There’s always been this cagey group of old men who are scared to death of people taking their money. Back in the day, they were upset that the technology existed to record onto cassette tapes directly from the radio.
It’s common knowledge that the amount of money record labels make from the sale of music is negligible at best, and in no way supersedes the advertising costs that they spend promoting said music. It is that absurdity that Kaskade calls into question, urging record labels to change their way of thinking — to allow the music to be heard, regardless of the method, rather than leading a crusade that will only serve to squelch artists and isolate the genre’s most dedicated fans.
Make no mistake: exposing as many people as possible to music – all music – is a good thing. Everyone wins. The artist, the audience, even the old guys who just want some more cash.