Quantcast
“What we demand is a legitimate opportunity for our members’ music to appear on commercial radio playlists—an opportunity that we believe has been denied to our members due to these alleged practices.”
INDIE LABELS LOBBY THE FCC
A2IM Asserts That Big Radio Gives the Major Labels an Unfair Advantage, Calls for Probe
The American Association of Independent Music, which represents more than 100 indie labels, last week sent a letter to FCC Chairman Kevin Martin urging the commission to investigate radio in order to determine whether there’s a level playing field for majors and indies alike. Here's the complete text of the A2IM’s letter:

I am writing today to express our enthusiastic reaction to news reports that the FCC is conducting a thorough investigation of alleged payola-like practices in the commercial radio industry. In particular, I want to offer our assistance in helping the Commission understand how these alleged practices have impacted the independent music industry.

One of the most serious allegations facing the broadcast industry is that radio stations engaged in business activities that made it virtually impossible for songs released by independent labels to be considered for airplay within existing formats. Independent music is booming—innovative programmers highlight songs released on independent labels on satellite radio, non-commercial stations and webcasts. Well over half of the releases cited in January's Village Voice Critics Poll were released by independent labels. The marketplace is responding, as independent labels now make up over 27% of sales in the American music market (and about 80% of the music available to consumers—representing the broad cultural diversity of the musical landscape). Yet, somehow, music released by independents is virtually absent from the commercial airwaves.

While we are very concerned that many critical musical genres like jazz, classical, blues, folk and bluegrass have essentially disappeared from commercial radio, perhaps not coincidental with the outgrowth of radio consolidation, we are not asking for new formats to be created focusing solely on independent music. What we demand is a legitimate opportunity for our members’ music to appear on commercial radio playlists—an opportunity that we believe has been denied to our members due to these alleged practices.
 
As you are undoubtedly aware, the New York AG has initiated action at the state level and has successfully garnered disclosure and settlements from two of the major recording companies so far. The associated fines are viewed by many in our sector as mere slaps on the wrists in comparison to the financial harm caused nationally.
 
It is absolutely vital that any full investigation addresses the issue of how to ensure that the vast diversity of American music has a fair opportunity to access the public airwaves.
Sincerely,
 
Don Rose
Acting President
 
CC: A2IM Board of Directors:
Lesley Bleakley, Beggars Group
Peter Gordon, Thirsty Ear
Steve Gottlieb, TVT Records
Doug Keogh, Roadrunner Records
Glenn Morrow, Bar-None
Molly Neuman, Lookout Records
Thomas Silverman, Tommy Boy

NEAR TRUTHS:
THE CAKE AND
THE CANDLES
Marketshare machers. (10/27a)
KENDRICK INKS WITH UMPG
Lamar enters the House of Jody. (10/27a)
YTD MARKETSHARE: AND THE WINNER IS...
It's a lock. (10/27a)
MAYBE, JUST MAYBE, PT. 8,761: SURGERY IN THE TIME OF COVID
Planning for an Election Day hopped up on painkillers. (10/28a)
ONCE IN A LIFETIME
Vote. Do it now. (10/28a)
RAINMAKERS 2020
Bring your umbrella.
GRAMMY OUTLIERS
Mulling possible surprises.
HALLOWEEN IN QUARANTINE
Why not wear a mask indoors?
ELECTION 2020
What drugs will help us get there?
 Email

 First Name

 Last Name

 Company

 Country
CAPTCHA code
Captcha: (type the characters above)