Transcript: Canadian Music's Disruption | Jul 09, 2018

Nam sits in the set of "The Agenda" with a guest.

Nam is in her forties, with mid-length curly brown hair and wears glasses, a black shirt, a blue blazer and a pendant necklace.

Denise is in her forties, with straight light brown hair with bangs in a bob cut. She wears a black sweater with gray decorations on the sleeves and a black vest.

Nam says WHAT HAS BEEN THE TRICKLE DOWN
EFFECT OF STREAMING MUSIC?
OH, THAT'S A BIG QUESTION.
THE TRICKLE DOWN EFFECT OF
STREAMING MUSIC.

Denise says WELL, YOU SORT OF HAVE TO LOOK
AT IT OVER ITS HISTORY.
WHEN I BECAME PRESIDENT OF
SONY MUSIC CANADA,
SHAWN FANNING WAS JUST GIVING
BIRTH TO NAPSTER,
WHICH WAS A DISRUPTIVE
LITTLE DICKENS.
UM, AND OUT, YOU KNOW,
OF NAPSTER
CAME OTHER ILLEGAL FILE
SHARING SITES.
AND IT-- IT WAS CATASTROPHIC FOR
THE RECORDING INDUSTRY,
BECAUSE IT WAS SUDDENLY "HOW DO
YOU COMPETE WITH FREE?"
PEOPLE WERE GETTING THEIR
MUSIC FOR FREE.
AND SO IT'S VERY DIFFICULT
TO COMPETE WITH THAT.
IT'S LIKE, YOU HAVE A BAKERY
STORE, AND THE GUY NEXT DOOR
STARTS GIVING BREAD AWAY
AND YOU'RE LIKE, "WHA?"
AND IT DEVASTATED THE INDUSTRY.
AND IT'S ONLY NOW, EVEN 16
YEARS LATER THAT, I THINK,
2016 IS THE FIRST YEAR THAT
THE RECORD INDUSTRY
HAS ACTUALLY STARTED TO
TURN AROUND, RIGHT?
THE DIGITAL SALES HAVE
SUPERSEDED PHYSICAL SALES.
AND I THINK, 2016,
THEY GREW BY 3.2 percent FROM 2015.
WHICH, IN ANY OTHER BUSINESS,
IS A ROUNDING ERROR,
BUT IN THE RECORD BUSINESS,
ANYONE WAS LOOKING
FOR A SIGN OF IMPROVEMENT.
SO IT CHANGED ALMOST
EVERYTHING.
UM, INCLUDING... NOW WE HAVE
LEGAL STREAMING SITES.
THERE'S OVER 500 LEGAL STREAMING
SITES AROUND THE WORLD.
BUT IT'S STILL A PROBLEM
FOR ARTISTS,
BECAUSE NOW IT'S HARDER
TO GET PAID, RIGHT?
THE PROMISE OF THE GOLDEN
AGE FOR ARTISTS
WAS THAT, YOU KNOW, IF YOU COULD
ACCESS MEDIA DIRECTLY,
YOU COULD GET RID OF ALL
THESE MIDDLE PEOPLE
WHO WERE KEEPING YOUR MUSIC AWAY
BECAUSE YOU DIDN'T GET A DEAL,
OR YOU WEREN'T SIGNED,
YOU WEREN'T PROMOTED, WHATEVER.
NOW EVERYBODY HAS INSTANT
ACCESS TO MARKET.
THE PROBLEM WAS THAT THE
"DO IT YOURSELF" TOOLS
TURNED SO MANY ARTISTS
INTO HUCKSTERS.
THEY'RE-- YOU KNOW, THEY'RE
THEIR OWN CONSUMER DEPARTMENT,
THEY'RE THEIR OWN
DISTRIBUTION DEPARTMENT,
THEY'RE THEIR OWN A and R TEAM,
THEIR OWN PUBLICITY TEAM.
THEY'RE THEIR OWN COMPLAINTS
DEPARTMENT.
AND IT-- NOT ONLY THAT,
BUT, YOU KNOW,
I DON'T WANT MY ARTISTS
SPENDING 10,000 HOURS ON BEING
THE INFRASTRUCTURE.
I WANT THEM TO BE ABLE TO
SPEND THEIR 10,000 HOURS
ON BEING THE BEST ARTIST THAT
THEY CAN POSSIBLY BE.
UM, SO THE STREAMING
SITES COME IN.
ARTISTS ARE COMPLAINING,
AND RIGHTLY SO,
THAT THE ROYALTY RATES THEY GET
FROM STREAMING ARE TERRIBLE.
THERE'S A HUGE GAP BETWEEN HOW
MANY TIMES, I MEAN, IT WAS LIKE,
THAT'S WHY TAYLOR SWIFT TOOK
HER MUSIC OFF SPOTIFY.
THAT'S WHY-- I THINK THERE WAS A
FAMOUS EXAMPLE
OF PHARRELL, WHO, UM,
HIS BIG HIT...
"HAPPY," HE GOT PAID
SOMETHING LIKE
2,700 DOLLARS THAT INCLUDED
HIS PUBLISHING
AND WRITER ROYALTIES,
FROM 43 MILLION PLAYS.
I MEAN, THAT'S NOT GONNA
KEEP HIM IN GOOD HATS.
SO THERE'S A GAP NOW, RIGHT?
LOTS OF EXPOSURE,
BUT YOU CAN DIE FROM EXPOSURE.
UM, SO THERE'S A GAP BETWEEN
HOW TO GET PAID.
AND ALSO IT'S A TOPSY TURVY
WORLD, BECAUSE BEFORE,
YOU WOULD PUT OUT A CD, YOU
WOULD TOUR TO SUPPORT THE CD,
AND GET PAID FROM THE
SALES OF THE CD.
NOW YOU GIVE IT AWAY FOR
FREE AND HOPE TO HELL
THAT SOMEBODY IS GONNA COME
TO YOUR LIVE PERFORMANCE,
WHERE YOU WILL ACTUALLY
GET PAID,
AND MAYBE THEY WILL BUY A HAT
WITH YOUR LOGO ON IT.
UM... SO IT'S DIFFICULT, AND
IT'S HAVING A HUGE EFFECT
ON THE INDUSTRY.
THERE'S A STAT THAT RECENTLY
SAID, FROM 2006,
WE HAVE LESS THAN HALF OF THE
MUSICAL ARTISTS IN THE COUNTRY
THAT WE USED TO,
THERE'S A HUGE GAP.

Nam says WOW, THAT'S...

Denise says I KNOW.

Nam says THAT'S SHOCKING.
THE OTHER QUESTION IS, WHAT
LESSONS ARE THERE
IN MUSIC'S DOWNTURN AND RECOVERY
FOR OTHER INDUSTRIES,
SUCH AS NEWSPAPERS, PUBLISHING,
TELEVISION?

Denise says UM, I THINK THERE'S A
LOT OF LESSONS.
I THINK THAT THEY ALL START
WITH "C," RIGHT?
CONTEXT, CONTENT, COMMUNITY,
COMPENSATION.
OTHER INDUSTRIES, I MEAN, ARE
CHALLENGED RIGHT NOW.
NEWSPAPERS, THE BOOK INDUSTRY,
THE TELEVISION INDUSTRY,
FOR SURE.
THE NEW TOOLS WILL GIVE
EVERYBODY NEW WAYS
TO BUILD COMMUNITY, TO ACCESS
THEIR CUSTOMERS,
TO ENGAGE WITH THEIR CUSTOMERS.
AND AT THE SAME TIME, ESPECIALLY
WHEN IT COMES TO INFORMATION
AND CONTENT, WE ARE BEING
TOTALLY OVERLOADED.
THERE WAS-- RON JAMES SAID, A
CANADIAN COMEDIAN, HE SAID,
I REMEMBER READING IN A
PAPER, HE SAID
"I HAVE SO MUCH INFORMATION NOW,
I HAVEN'T A CLUE WHAT'S GOING
ON," AND IT'S TRUE, RIGHT?
JUST BECAUSE WE HAVE THE
HEADLINES DOESN'T MEAN
WE UNDERSTAND IT ANY BETTER.
SO I THINK AN OPPORTUNITY FOR
A LOT OF MEDIA OUTLETS
TO PROVIDE CONTEXT, TO HELP
PEOPLE UNDERSTAND,
TO HELP THEM NAVIGATE THROUGH
THIS BOMBARDMENT OF INFORMATION
IS ONE OF THE WAYS.
AND ALSO TO COMPENSATE
THE CREATORS.
JOURNALISTS ARE BEING
PAID LESS,
THEY ARE STRUGGLING THE WAY
MUSICIANS ARE STRUGGLING.
UM... WE ARE LEARNING BETTER,
WE ARE LEARNING TO GET
OUR INFORMATION FROM
BEHIND FIREWALLS.
WE ARE SUBSCRIBING TO
THE SITES WE LIKE.
IT'S ALL STARTING TO HAPPEN,
BUT WE HAVE TO WORK HARDER AT
IT, TOO, JUST AS CONSUMERS.
THERE'S NO LACK OF CURIOSITY,
FOR SURE, AND PEOPLE ARE...
BUT WE HAVE TO WORK HARDER
TO FIND IT, TOO...
TO-- TO MEET OUR
CURIOUS DEMANDS.

Watch: Canadian Music's Disruption