Over at a blog called Silent Attraction they discuss the
luck success of two rappers achieving a number one hit unsigned. It was not unprecedented which they acknowledge later in the post. They also posit this statement about what it means:
These labels have to be nervous; no longer do artists need to go through them in order to be successful.
I have a feeling they are no more nervous than big publishing is about independent authors. Each has and will have its place in the ecosystem. I think the disambiguation has a far more reaching impact on those whom made their living as intermediaries between the artists and the labels. Independent A&R people who were going to use their deep connections to get you signed. They are the ones who should be shaking in their boots just like agents for authors are. They are not necessary anymore; you only need a good attorney to represent you. And from the labels perspective I can simply watch the independent charts, the blogs, data mine etc. and then convince the artists their life would be easier if the label handled all the heavy lifting. Of course, I would need to be compensated for all my beneficence like taking a cut of your touring money, publishing and half of your t-shirt sales, something that used to be considered unconscionable. It’s necessary you see, it’s harder to make a profit what with all the file sharing.