In Chapter 14 of 15, music promotions and operations director Andy Epstein highlights an unchanged fact in the music business: big labels still make big stars. Amidst music industry disruption and digitization, large labels remain the experts at discovering, marketing, and promoting talent and, as a result, will remain influential and relevant in coming years.
Erik Michielsen: Why do you think the big labels not just on Allen Death Jam but why are they in a better position to succeed launching superstars? Andrew Epstein: We have a core competency, finding new talent and marketing and promoting new talent. The small new labels that are spreading up everywhere and there are thousands of them. They can sign their friends and their friend’s best friend’s band and they can put it out there. But we have the muscle and the power and the experience to take someone from the middle class music. A small band, small RnB singer, someone who is talented and get them in front of all America. I would be curious to ask an artist, everyone has different hopes and aspirations and when you are in a young band or you're a young RnB singer, do you want to be Michael Jackson or do you just want to make a living and have a day job and if you want to be the Michael Jackson or next Whitney Houston. You need that push. Some writers, producers and directors they are happy to do it on a smaller scale. They don’t even what to talk about that but I do know and someone told me the story and they met Jon Bon Jovi in 1985. He said I want to be an absolute local superstar and someone said, “You know that is something to look forward when you are doing, when you are looking for the next superstar.” They bet want to be the next superstar, so if that is what you want then our business the major label business still provides that and then an online digital label doesn’t provide that.