Intro and Revision Notes



Immerse yourself in studying of your chosen record label

You must know how the music industry “works” today.

Understand the differences between the large corporations (be able to name them and have a rough idea about their size and history) and the small independent record labels like the one that you have researched…

You must show the examiner that you have studied your record label in some detail.  Have answers to the following questions at ready and use the knowledge appropriately in your answer to the question.

  • When and where were they established?
  • Why were they established?
  • What is their size? (in business terms)
  • Who is their prime market?
  • How do they reach that market?
  • Is their marketing strategy successful?
  • What advantages do they have over the large corporations?
  • What disadvantages do they have?

Fully understand the implications of peer-to-peer file sharing (illegal) and distribution of songs and albums via the internet – legal downloading of mp3 file and CD’s.

  • How has this affected the structure of the industry over the last few years?
  • How has new digital technology changed the way audiences consume texts?

(All this relates to how your label operates).

How has the industry, both the producers (bands, etc.) and the distributors, responded to the threat of downloading – remember the case of Radiohead and Arctic Monkeys others (what has Lilly Allen to say on this matter?) and this is why iTunes was born (arguably) and Napster was bought up and became legal.

  • Why is downloading so popular?

Remember to mention your audience survey  (?*see below) and results.

Convergence and Vertical Integration – know these terms and use them appropriately

  • Think of Sony:  HiFi/consumable media/films/TV/Record label,etc.
  • Think of Apple: computers/iPod/iPhone/music sales/apple TV,etc.
  • Think of Virgin: music store/record label/production company/telecoms company/Cable TV company, etc.

 Convergence is about technologies coming together while vertical integration is about industries coming together.

 Convergence is a direct result of digital technology making it possible but is the iPhone (for example) a good thing for consumers of not?  Do we really want this – do the producers of media texts want it. Is it confusing for producers and audience alike?  Think about these things.



Between now and the exam (in pairs or threes) carry out a survey of how your peers and as many teachers  as possible consume their music today.




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