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Do recording company executives really know a hit song when they hear it? Print E-mail

Monday, 16 April 2012 00:00

Written by David Samuel

Do record executives know a hit song? Do they care to know?  I honestly don’t think they care enough about music  to research the finer points of what makes a hit song.  I guess the question for them would be will it make us money?   

Is that the definition of hit song?  Will the people buy it because they like it?  Is that a hit song?   The point is that they have a money making template in the industry right now and they are not going to stray away from that. 

Test have shown that it takes a listener around 40X's before he or she begins to bond to a song.  Thus the reasoning behind slamming a new single down our throat 10 times an hour on the FM dial when the big recording executives release another one of their units out the Wall Street door.

The idea is that if you are in a middle of a heart wrench break up and their song is on the car radio dial you will somehow emotionally bond with it.  You just had the best day of the summer and their song was playing you will tie in that emotion every time you hear it.

So my question is this.  Is it a hit song if it sounds pretty much like the other hit song that played the year before?  David Cook sounds a little like Chris Daughtry, Chris sounds a little like Nickleback, etc.  They will not stray too far from that money making template.

No big record exec thought Dave Mathews was a hit when they first heard him because he did not fit that money making template.  However, Dave had the foresight and initial drive to give his music the test of time.  His independent musical entrepreneurship paid off.  His audience grew steady throughout his career.  He was not under the pressure of the Major Label make a hit this month or your cut from this deal mentality. 

With time he had such a loyal fan base outside of the major record companies they big record executives came to him with humble hearts and asked if he would allow them to have a piece of his pie.  He said no for many years until they gave him a deal he couldn't resist.  So in his case they didn’t know what he had till he showed them by packing venues all on his own without their help.

The labels will not sign real talent right now because they now are under the make money for me now ideology.  The new fresh talented artist will not have time given to him for his audience to appreciate his new art.  So unless you sound like Pink, Kelley Clarkson, John Mayor, Jack Johnson, David Cook, Black Eyed Peas or someone else that is on top of the charts you will not have a chance for your single to be considered a hit song. 

Of course this is all my own ninety eight cents worth.  But the talk of a hit song the industry today seems almost pointless.  A great song and talented artist would not make it in today's music scene.  Aeorosmith took almost 7 years before they wrote “Dream On”.  I don’t think they would have that kind of time today. 

The majors won’t give a band or artist much time to be out there for us to bond to his ways of writing.  Just like the Dave Mathews example at first we may not like it.  Then over a year or so we may start to develop and broaden our musical taste buds.  Our pallet will mature over time being exposed to great art.  But the big executives in the record industry will only give us what they want.  We get spoon fed music from the industry hit making machine. 

Thank God for internet radio and those tiny little satellites up in the air!


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