Sunday, April 12, 2009

The New Record Label - You

A group of friends hanging by a river were horsing around when they came up with a song as they were jamming. One of the men in the group pulled out his cell phone and recorded it. Everyone loved it and they forwarded it to eachother as a ringtone. And they forwarded it to friends, and then their friends forwarded it and so on and so on. Within a few months, that song would be uploaded to Youtube and played over a half million times with fans posting their own music videos. The song eventually becomes a Top 10 hit in both the US and Mexico on Billboard's Latin Music List. Sound unlikely?

Well this is real. This scenario happend to an amateur Mexican regional grupero band called Los Picadientes de Caborca (The Caborca teeth-pickers.) This assortment of musical rejects now find themselves on tour and having daily phone interviews with radio DJs while being chased by fans. The best part - they don't have to share any profits from sales of their single, La Cumbia del Rio, with a record company. In fact, record companies are stalking them to get in on the action.

The web's transformative power on the music industry is so prolific that new models of doing business are explored every day. Just two months ago, Cucu Diamantes, a relatively well-known singer and former front woman of a Latin band, Yerba Buena, launched her solo album, Cuculand, exclusively online with the help on iTunes and MySpace. Her video for her single, Mas Fuerte, is now a Top 20 video favorite.

What all this means for Hispanic music lovers is that there will be more options for them and less control on the type of music we gain access to by the music labels. Now our biggest challenge is finding all of this great music, which is a fun problem to have.

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