Six Reasons Why 2016 Was a Great Year For Big Music
Rolling Stone's Steve Knopper gives six reasons why the music industry's future looks bright after 2016.This article originally appeared on Rolling Stone
After more than 15 years of piracy, scalping and other bogeymen who've shown up to slash jobs and loot artists, the music business' 2016 was … not terrible.
There was Beyonce. And Drake. And Chance the Rapper, Rihanna, the return of Guns N' Roses, Axl Rose fronting AC/DC, Justin Bieber and every song you could ever want streaming from one of a zillion different services. It's not like the halcyon days of $18 CDs are back — or ever will be — but the record industry has grown for two straight years, the first time since 1999 and the Recording Industry Association of America reports music retail spending grew 8.1 percent in the first half of 2016. Plus, promoters figured out if you put the Who, the Stones and a bunch of other veteran rock superstars in a field, they could make $150 million. Six reasons to feel optimistic about Big Music in 2016:
1. Record labels are actually bringing in money.
YouTube recently announced it paid $1 billion to artists, publishers and record labels in 2016; the RIAA reported revenues jumped from $3.2 billion in mid-year 2015 to $3.4 billion this past half-year...