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EMI, a company in deep crisis

Written by alchemiste on January 13, 2008 to .

Up to 2,000 jobs at EMI – more than one in three of the workforce – are at risk under a radical restructuring of the music group drawn up by private-equity boss Guy Hands. Thousands of artists will also go from EMI’s 14,000-strong roster. Little is known which artists will have to go at this point.

Robbie Williams is refusing to release his next album until he knows what kind of service an artist of his magnitude could expect from his record company. Williams' manager says that EMI's new CEO, said Guy Hands, is behaving like a plantation owner. Coldplay is also considering leaving EMI while Radiohead and Paul McCartney have already left.

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i’d imagine that roxette’s contract with emi svenska would remain intact it’s any international elements of it that would probably be rendered null, at this point wouldn’t it be better for them to lauch maybe their own lable? we all new emi was in trouble and is in trouble

They already have their own label(s). All the music they have recorded lately under Elevator Entertainment, Mary Jane and Roxette Recordings was released “under exclusive license to EMI Music Sweden” (they might be in charge of the distribution). I don’t know how the music business work, but I think they can give the license to any other company if they really want.

There might also be a difference between international market and the local EMI-management in Sweden.
I don’t believe anyone in Sweden is interrested to kick away acts like Gessle and Fredrikkson, and there might be other people responsable to decide than for international artists.

From “our” (the fan’s) point of view it is not a big problem when Gessle & co release in Sweden only. Not in days of iTunes, eBay etc.
And those established Artists like Gessle do not need international chart-positions anymore to stay alive and convince their managers. They are independed and can easiely (like written before by 7-Twenty-7) distribute their music on other ways.

It is very sad for the newcomers. On the other hand: today a newcomer can merchandise his music comparatively easy without any big recordcompany. There are new movements like jamendo, kazzong or justaloud, and I’m sure: in 15 years we do need no record-companies anymore.

It’s good for the fans and artists but sad for the people working in those institutions. But it is their own fault. They were just sleeping (and still do) while there is a new generation of artists growing in the background, who will have a new generation of fans.
The days, when an artists is frustrated by the rejections of the big record companys are soon over. Too long the big labels ignored the new inspired bands and relaxed on their position. Now they need to offer new ideas for a rapidely changing market, but the new artists have found own ways already. They are much more independend like the classical band of the 70s or 80s.

Record Companies in the classical way are only interessting for the already existing artists that are big in business. As soon as the old hereos dissapear EMI and co will follow.

So I’m not surprised by these news.

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Don’t know really much about the music biz but isn’t it that there is a big difference between having your own label and your own record company...your label saves your copyrights for your songs but you still need a company that will support the artist and releases your stuff...or who is paying for printing the Cds and the booklets and stuff? The Record company...or not...?

Who needs physical records anymore? Who needs much money for marketing and for pressing the CDs?
It’s just bits and bytes, so there is just no need anymore to reach people by these old ways (and so no need for the music-biz-patterns from the dinsaur-age EMI and co are still working with)
The CD will be a luxury, nice for collectors, but not necessary to promote an artist and spread it’s music.

Even the radio-culture already changes with the internet, were everyone can make his/her own programme. I believe and I already notice there will as well grow many of the “open source”-ideas also in the music- and art-culture. “For Free” instead of “DRM”. “Wikipedia” is an example that shows how needless an expencive encyclopedia became in a very short time. The same will happen to music, and “copy-control” was the wrong answer of the record companies

Times have changed :-)

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Coldplay, Radiohead and Paul McCartney has done what Roxette should have done years ago: left EMI. If I were Per I would have left right after “Tourism”.

Who needs physical records anymore? Me. I have never paid for a digital song, and I never will. If you want me speding money in music, give me something in return. A very compressed digital file is not enough for me.

Roxette can release there own music, there fan base is still strong. They need to get up to speed on this digital lark. EMI have lost it !

I know what you are talking about. I’m a collector by myself, and I prefer CD-quality, too. And I love the vinyl-LPs, not because of their sound (which is clearly weaker than this from CD) but because of its beauty and “charisma” concerning the artwork.

Nevertheless, an MP3 in a bitrate higher than 160 kbit/s (with a good encoder!) is no more recognisable as a reduced file by human ear. Furthermore all the DVD-sound is mpeg (usually divided to 5 channels!, not only two for stereo which results in a much weaker “resolution”) and noone is aware of it, when one enjoys the dolby-surround-sound.

I know that not everyone will like these new forms of music-distribution. But the “new generations” will grow into it, and, from the musical point of view, there is no reasonable argument why not having (high quality-) MP3s instead of CDs. But to my opinion an MP3-Album should be clearly cheaper than a CD-album (this is not yet the case, although it seems to be accepted by the customers).

I do not believe that the CD or the vinyl will die out. But it will not play the same role than today, so an artist will no more be forced to find a big company to efford CD-Pressing. Maybe just some fans will order a CD, but no big distribution-systems are necessarry here, at least not for the musician of average. Of course there will be always an Elvis, a Michael Jacksson, a Robbie Williams with big managements in the background, but beyond the top-20, espacially for local artists, the artists will act in a more indepent way, which will result in shorter ways of distribution, and lower costs. Good for the artist, good for the music, good for the fans!

When we talk about quality:
Even a 128 kbit-MP3 sounds CLEARLY BETTER than what you hear hear on a radiostation. The radiostations use terrible dynamic-compressors that destroy the whole song, make it pumping and splash the sound, just to keep a constant level of loudness (an exception might be radiostations playing classical music). Curiously most people are used to these musical mutilations.

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if roxette left emi after tourism they would have been lablesss forever, remember per tried to shop roxette around in the usa 3 tims, once when pop broke, once when their contract came up for re-negotiation after cbb, and once again around the time of room service, noone bit. Now depending on who you speak to it’s partly pers fault because he burned alot of bridges in the states with people who used to work for emi in the usa and then went on to other lables, he also is a control freak when it comes to when his songs get used and by whom, which in a country where marketing involves everything from ringtones to tv ads to tv shows, doesn’t fly very well. There was also from what I hear a money issue, their contract with emi is pure profit, noone here in the states would give them that ever.

Every mistake imaginable, you know. They may solve their crisis but I don’t know, they do seem to be a hopeless case right now. ;-)


I still want CDs and even Vinyl!!! I love to be untrendy!!! Yippieh!! MP3 are just a fake for your real sound, no real details....seems that all the MP3 -Fans just listen to music to kill the silence but not to enjoy the art of music!

wow coyboyusa you sure know alot about per and roxette music contract LOL ;-)

No, I think you are wrong, CRIZ. I bet that no-one can distinguish an MP3 in high bitrate from a CD-recording, when you make double-blind-studies. It’s just blabla, like in the older days, when some people argued the vinyl-sound would be “warmer” (which was just due to artefacts from suboptimal recordplayers). Later it was proofed that they were not able to tell the disfference, when music was presented on high-tech-equipment (although the vinyl-quality is physically less good than a 16bit - 44,1 khz-PCM-Wave on audio-CDs).

Of course the MP3 is a loss of information. When I work with audio-data (I’m producing music myself) I never compress it inbetween and keep the original 24bit-wave-tracks always in my “archive”.
But for a finished mixed and mastered song for the purpose as a listener this loss of information is not detectable anymore (like you will not notice the failure on a map which does not account for the bending of the bell-shaped earth-surface).

If I’ll have the time I will try to find some data about it in the net, but I guess then I would need to open a thread in the offtopic-forum :-) I’m curious about it, but like I said, I guess their will be no detectable difference for the human ear (but maybe I’m wrong...)

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I’m a CD and LP Collector, but I like mp3’s too because that way I can listen to Music on Portable Devices like the PSP for example and that’s the Beauty of .mp3’s!

Have Fun!!!

Let’s close EMI.
EMI has poorly supported Roxette’s albums since Crash! Boom! Bang!
What do you think about BAD HAIR DAY? A gift for us and maybe a touch for EMI?

Maybe we could say soon....welcome WARNER?

Do what you want, but harm no one!!!!

I guess it’s a matter of taste and how one listens to music. If you are used to listening to radio and to music in the background or listening to music via an MP3 player (quality isn’t that good, even in the best of the players) it won’t matter if you buy an MP3 in not so good quality. If you ENJOY listening to music, you do it exclusively with a good hi-fi, home, maybe with headphones, eyes closed, listening to every detail, enjoying THE MUSIC, then you need a CD. At least I do.

It would be sad (or it is) to see a whole generation just listening to MP3s (via cell phones!!) but then again, when you see what kind of music is in the charts right now, or when you stand next to a 12 year old who listens to some kind of hip-hop singer extremely loud with headphones that you even understand what he is singing out of the headphones.. then you kind of understand they don’t care if the MP3 quality sucks ;-)

But I still believe there are people of the “new generation” out there who love MUSIC. I can’t imagine these have enough with MP3s. I doubt CD/DVD will disappear, I just think companies should stop caring about copy-protection systems, they should try to sell the CDs cheaper. I have no clue about costs, maybe a jewel case isn’t that expensive, I don’t know, but maybe recycled paper for a cartoon cover and booklets would be an option.

I own such a small collection of mp3s.... long live to CDs :)

Marie Fredriksson Online
Be strong, speak true

Given the state of music industry these days, it’s understandable how companies find themselves in the position they are in.

As has been said, I don’t see EMI Svenska dropping Roxette, Marie or Per given what they have accomplished of the past 20 years and the recognition they still have.The international branches are another story though.

Interesting stuff there coyboy. What exactly do you mean “their contract with emi is pure profit”? How would any company allow their artist to take all the profits from sales? What does the record co. receive in return?

The day you can’t buy a physical form of music will be a sad day. As much as i like the “handiness” of mp3s I still want a physical CD or equivalent for the money I pay. If nothing else a lossless digital copy.

Lennon says “Radiostations use terrible dynamic-compressors that destroy the whole song, make it pumping and splash the sound,

In the last few years It seems the trend is to do this on the final master sadly. Even Roxette have done this to some degree on the past few albums.

@ Lennon: well okay, My latest post was a bit emotional maybe! ;) I believe you cause as I said before I don’t know much about the music biz and I’m just a listener...but for me it’s enough to KNOW that something is missing in a Mp3...something got compressed...even if I maybe don’t hear any difference (I think I do..but anyway) I don’t have that high tech equipment you mention and I also have my MP3 player with me when I’m driving around with my bike or sitting in a bus or train...but I cannot imagine to live with this sort of “dead” 10011001010110101000- codes and that’s why I hope that the artists and record companies will make CDs a bit more interesting in the future. Why not producing this double CDs where you have the CD on one side and on the other side you have a DVD or something with some more information and maybe videos? I think we should get something more for our money when we buy a whole album than the ones who just buy mp3s.

And by the way: I still think that the “Dressed for success” 12# maxi makes much much much more noise than the “Dressed for success” CD-Maxi. I really love the full sound from the past...yes ...I remember the time with vinyl...when suddenly in my supermarket everything was decorated with “Dangerous” 12#....long time ago...*sigh* :)
God created a few perfect people, the rest are righthanded (-;

I just wamma say that I hate that music has become boring files on a computer for most people nowadays. I love real records with all the pictures and lyrics, and I always buy them i a real record-store because I don’t want them to disappear.... but I guess I’m just born far too late. Shit.

I also vote for CDs. But it’s not because I find a difference in music quality. No, it’s because a CD is more personal. You have a nice booklet with pictures of your favourite artist and you have a CD that you can hold in your hands. You have a real thing, not just some 0’s and 1’s in your computer.

Having said that I just can sort of imagine what people felt when CDs replaced LPs. Life is changing...

I’m gonna get dressed for success


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