I’m not sure why (and I’m hard pressed to think about it too much) but my last two Magnatune project, “Riding the Faders 2″ and “Chronic Dreams 2″ have flatlined in sales – and at a very low place at that. Chronic 1 and La Vie Chill still pop a sale occasionally and along with RTF 1 I can’t complain, which is to say I’m really grateful that plenty of people think they are worth paying for.
I seriously doubt this is a reflection on Magnatune or even tip-jar-fatigue because the music on the follow-ups is different than the first editions and it might just be that the newer ones don’t connect with people like the first ones did. There is the possibility that Magnatune’s new subscription mode which debuted a week after CD 2 went on sale has absorbed my album sales. (Album sales are posted nightly to Magnatune artists, but the accumulation of royalties from subscription streaming is only calculated a few times a year so it’s possible I’ll see big numbers for my music then – but I’m assuming not.)
Whatever the reason, I’m using the dead sales figures as a rationale for seriously focusing my music on a relatively narrow target. I recently compiled a playlist on ccMixter of the “Undiscovered fourstones” and especially when held up against artists who have actually mastered many genres (I’m thinking now of Loveshadow) I couldn’t help noticing that my attempts at the various styles seem less convincing than ever, even to me. I can only imagine what potential customers might be hearing. I’m definitely over that.
So while it may all sound very contrived from an artistic perspective, the fact is I’ve been leaning toward this kind of thing anyway (note the drastic and consistent increase in ccMixter uploads using my Cry Baby wha-wha pedal).
For better or worse, this is all you’re going to get out of me a while. Maybe, you know, forever.