The New Radio Game

The radio game has sure changed within the past few years. I had a moment of reflection about my time promoting records and realized what has happened. The game used to be to take a recording around to radio stations and sell the program director that the song will hit. Then he would act interested and “may” give it a little rotation to see what would happen. For me it was even more interesting because I normally dealt with R & B or dance music (or most of the time a fusion of both). That meant I could use the record pools – a collection of mostly night club and sometimes a few radio disk-jockeys – to help push rotation. Because I dealt mostly in Florida, I quickly found out that it was best for me to stay away from South Florida. Even though the sheer amount of night clubs would seem to give promotions a boost, the overall politics of radio was a large hill to climb. At the time I had a business partner who enjoyed muddling though the mess of red tape. But now things have changed greatly in a span of twenty years. The struggling independent record company has other resources. A good friend of mine has used technology to cash in. Because of the internet any musician/producer can get his or her music heard and sold without any of the old obstacles to overcome. Is this for the best? I really think so. We still have the major record companies doing their thing, spending millions to promote acts that already have had some regional success. But we also have the smaller companies and even individual artists’ producing music and getting their product out in cyber space. We can now hear it all without a problem. Satellite and Internet radio both have provided us with a great deal of music and more choices that we had in the past. I love it because now when it comes to recorded music, I can cheer for the little guy.

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