HITS Daily Double
Before, there was one way to make it in the music industry: to sign with a major label. Today, the major label route is becoming one of the least viable and beneficial partnerships for an artist.


It's That Time of Year Again for Two-a-Day Practices and Triple-Digit Temperatures
Fri., Aug 10th
Preseason NFL football on CBS: Buffalo vs. New Orleans

Nickelback @ The Gorge in George, WA

Sat., Aug 11th
Family Values Tour starring Korn, Evanescence, Atreyu, Flyleaf, Hellyeah, Trivium and more @ HiFi Buys Amphitheatre, Atlanta

Channel 93.3's Big Gig: Social Distortion, Blue October, Jack's Mannequin, Motion City Soundtrack, Plain White T's, I Hate Kate, Single File @ Coors Amphitheatre in Greenwood Village, Denver

Poison @ Gibson Amphitheatre

An Evening with Rush @ Smirnoff Music Centre, Dallas

Sun., Aug 12th
Preseason NFL football on NBC: Seattle vs. San Diego

Chris Isaak w/ Nicole Atkins @ House of Blues New Orleans

Keyshia Cole @ House of Blues Chicago

Rush Hour 3
Starring: Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker
LAPD Detective James Carter and Chinese Chief Inspector Lee team up again, this time traveling to Paris to dismantle the organized crime family known as the Triads.
Y’know, I couldn’t have cared less that they’d made another Rush Hour, even though I liked the first two—but after seeing the trailer, I can’t wait for it! I’m betting this one will be surprisingly good.

Also Opening this week:
This movie has an amazing cast that includes Robert DeNiro, Claire Danes, Michelle Pfeiffer, Sienna Miller and Peter O’Toole. I still don’t think that will be enough to make this movie good.

By Barrett Yeretsian

Partnerships are an interesting phenomenon for, if they are executed in the right way, they can be one of the most powerful tools for artist empowerment. Given the fact that no artist can achieve his/her goals alone, the ability to forge and sustain mutually beneficial partnerships is a necessary skill that an empowered artist needs to cultivate. Whether the partnership is with bandmembers, managers, attorneys, labels, multimedia companies or name brands, the success of an artist depends largely on how well the artist can create, nourish and maintain strong alliances. Today we will go over the necessary steps to building powerful partnerships.

The importance of partnerships in the current state of the music industry cannot be overemphasized. These days, there are a plethora of potential partnerships available for artists, and an artist's goal should be to build a brand to the point where it is considered viable and valuable as a potential partner. Before, there was one way to make it in the music industry: to sign with a major label. Today, the major label route is becoming one of the least viable and beneficial partnerships for an artist. Each artist is different and what would be considered a detrimental partnership for one artist might be beneficial for another. The beauty of a successful partnership is the unity of two separate worlds, two separate spheres of influence and two separate pools of resources that can expedite the speed of progress considerably.

The first step toward to a successful partnership is clearly understanding what each side stands to benefit from the partnership, as well as what each side has to give up in order to reap these benefits. More often than not, artists only focus on the potential benefits without considering the inevitable drawbacks and compromises, jumping into such relationships prematurely. At first, life is peachy as both sides enjoy the exponentially increasing power that ensues when two entities work in harmony toward a common goal. After a few months, one side becomes resentful, feeling like they are giving more to the partnership than the other and that they have compromised more than they should have. The resentment often turns into passive/aggressive behavior that escalates the situation until the partnership is dissolved. The only way to start a great partnership is to thoroughly think through, understand and communicate what both sides will be gaining and what they will each be giving in order to make it work.

Once both sides clearly understand their responsibilities and potential benefits, the next step is to put it down on paper. This is a step that is usually avoided by artists because it deviates from the "artist's mystique" and is unfortunately many artists’ downfall. Without a transparent written agreement, too much is left to chance, emotions and the whims of both sides. Just because someone feels a certain way today doesn't mean they will be feeling the same way tomorrow or a year from now. Getting it all in writing is the least both sides can do to protect their interests. Another important component of a partnership agreement is to clearly define what will happen if and when the partnership is dissolved.

Once both sides sign a transparent, mutually beneficial agreement, they begin the process working with their interests aligned and continuing to build trust. A partnership, just like any other relationship, needs continued nurturing through honest and open communication. If one feels like the other side isn't following through on its promises, he should openly communicate his concerns in a non-threatening manner. If the issues can be resolved, perfect. If they cannot, there is already a mechanism in place to deal with how to dissolve the partnership. Conflict between partners is inevitable but conflict is escalated and multiplied when a partnership isn't nurtured through compassionate and open communication.

Record labels are viable and worthy partners for an artist only when they are truly committed to investing their resources toward advancing an artist's career. Unfortunately, most major labels today are in financial turmoil and as such are less likely to commit resources to developing artists. When an act signed to a major label has no guarantees in terms of tour support, marketing dollars and even an album release, more often than not, the major label becomes a useless partner. The empowered artist of today sees the world as a place teeming with potential partners including, but not limited to, the major record labels.

Next week's column will be called "Objectivity and Distance."

Barrett is currently producing several very talented artists, composing for film and television, performing with and writing songs for several of his own projects and teaching the drums at all levels. He welcomes and encourages any and all feedback relating to his column. You can email him at: [email protected]

This week, I turn my attention to a band called One Republic. I worked with these guys about a year and a half ago, when they were just known as Republic; since then they’ve recorded some amazing material and signed with Interscope. They are currently the top band on MySpace (www.myspace.com/onerepublic), and if you haven’t had a chance to check them out, it’s a must. The lead singer, Ryan Tedder, has worked with many amazing artists and producers, including Timbaland—in fact, the band is even featured on Timbaland’s recent Shock Value. They also just made an appearance on So You Think You Can Dance performing their song “Apologize,” which was remixed for the Timbaland album. It’s only a matter of time until this band gets their big chance, and when they do. One Republic will become a household name very quickly.

Here’s a recap of some of the acts I’ve featured:
Digital Summer: www.myspace.com/digitalsummer
Captiol Risk:
Judge Jackson: