Author Topic: Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums  (Read 2393 times)

Lydian

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Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums
« on: June 07, 2016, 06:59:16 am »
How do you guys feel about pop albums with a large amount of songwriters? Personally, I don't understand albums that have 100 different writers on it. I mean Kanye's new album has 103 writers! It's good music but what did he actually do? Even Justin Bieber, Beyoncé, & Tiësto. I get it's a business and everything but how can you honestly perform in front of a crowd of 1000 people knowing that you didn't write your own music? It's not Drake's album. It's god knows who's album.

I know I'm over exaggerating a bit. I'm not trying to undervalue a great vocal take. I'm not trying to say that these artists did absolutely nothing. It just leaves a bad taste in my mouth to hear people talk about how great "X artist's" album is when you know that the majority of the writing was done by other people. Sure they get "writer credits" on the album but at the end of the day it's "Drakes" album or "Justins" album.

It kinda feels like these pop artists are just brand names that the "real" songwriters use as devices to get their music out to the public. All at the sacrifice of not being able to put their name on their own music. The tradeoff being that the pop artist is the one who get's to call it "their" album.

How do you guys feel about this?
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ion

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Re: Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2016, 09:32:48 am »
The man that makes most money in modern music today is Max Martin.  He has his factory where he hires talent and produces hits.  He has never fronted his own songs.  The big tunes are "placed" there by the labels, don´t fool yourself into believing anything else.  Sitting in on a talk with Martin Garrix, I learned that the whole viral phenomenon of "Animals" had been orchestrated by Spinnin´(his words, not mine).  Many of the big names have barely ever made anything themselves, but have been present at the right place at the right time.
As for people like Bieber and others it must be considered a part of a longstanding tradition.  Elvis never wrote anything that was released.  It´s just the way it is.
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Arktopolis

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Re: Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2016, 11:26:05 am »
I'm kind of indifferent on this topic... But to be honest, there are many artists I'd be happy to write music for. The benefit for the songwriters is that they get to do the fun part of the work - making music - without having to deal with the publicity and touring and bitches and... wait. Maybe it's enough credit for them to get hired again, i.e. to be respected by their colleagues in the music industry, instead of being recognized by Beliebers?

What I'm curious about, though, is that how do ten people write a track together? And then six people produce it. What do all those people do? I'll answer the latter part of my question with this video from an Avicii livestream: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEcq4sXN7jQ

Mussar

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Re: Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2016, 01:07:15 pm »
If every artist wrote every piece of every song all by themselves, then there would be a whole lot less opportunity for musicians in this industry.

Stop spending so much energy worrying about the integrity of other artists and just stay in your lane. Let people earn a living how they want. We all just wanna survive and do what we love.

FarleyCZ

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Re: Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2016, 06:39:19 pm »
It makes me appreciate people like Ed Sheeran much more ... who actually do write their stuff while being successful.
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Mussar

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Re: Artists Who Don't Write Their Albums
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2016, 07:41:40 pm »
What I'm curious about, though, is that how do ten people write a track together? And then six people produce it. What do all those people do? I'll answer the latter part of my question with this video from an Avicii livestream: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EEcq4sXN7jQ

From a business perspective, the only way you get royalty payment on a song is if you have a portion of the writer's credit. When the money for plays is given to the publishing right's organization that collects it, they allocate it into 200% - 100% that goes to the publisher (either you or, more likely, your record label) and 100% that is divided equally amongst all the writers.

For your typical pop song, 50% of the writer's earnings goes to whomever wrote the lyrics, and 50% goes to whomever composed the music. That can get divided differently based on genre, song, and who wants writer's credit (except for the drummer, cause drummers get shafted on writing copyright).

Could be that a lot of those people are just trying to earn a little bit more sustainable revenue. Also why it's a good idea to start collaborating early and often, given you don't just work with any old producer that walks in the door: the more songs you have published with your name on the credits, the more opportunities for pennies, nickels and dimes to accumulate from radio/streaming plays and visual media synchronization and good old fashioned direct downloads.

And that last one might not stick around much longer.