How Music Got Free: A Story of Obsession and Invention

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Finalist for the 2016 Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the 2016 J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize, and the 2015 Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year

One of Billboard’s 100 Greatest Music Books of All Time

New York Times Editors’ Choice

ONE OF THE YEAR'S BEST BOOKS: The Washington Post • The Financial Times • Slate • The Atlantic • Time • Forbes


“[How Music Got Free] has the clear writing and brisk reportorial acumen of a Michael Lewis book.”—Dwight Garner, The New York Times

What happens when an entire generation commits the same crime?

How Music Got Free is a riveting story of obsession, music, crime, and money, featuring visionaries and criminals, moguls and tech-savvy teenagers. It’s about the greatest pirate in history, the most powerful executive in the music business, a revolutionary invention and an illegal website four times the size of the iTunes Music Store. 

Journalist Stephen Witt traces the secret history of digital music piracy, from the German audio engineers who invented the mp3, to a North Carolina compact-disc manufacturing plant where factory worker Dell Glover leaked nearly two thousand albums over the course of a decade, to the high-rises of midtown Manhattan where music executive Doug Morris cornered the global market on rap, and, finally, into the darkest recesses of the Internet.

Through these interwoven narratives, Witt has written a thrilling book that depicts the moment in history when ordinary life became forever entwined with the world online—when, suddenly, all the music ever recorded was available for free. In the page-turning tradition of writers like Michael Lewis and Lawrence Wright, Witt’s deeply reported first book introduces the unforgettable characters—inventors, executives, factory workers, and smugglers—who revolutionized an entire artform, and reveals for the first time the secret underworld of media pirates that transformed our digital lives.

An irresistible never-before-told story of greed, cunning, genius, and deceit, How Music Got Free isn’t just a story of the music industry—it’s a must-read history of the Internet itself.
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About the author

Stephen Witt was born in New Hampshire in 1979 and raised in the Midwest. He graduated from the University of Chicago with a degree in mathematics in 2001. He spent the next six years playing the stock market, working for hedge funds in Chicago and New York. Following a two-year stint in East Africa working in economic development, he graduated from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism in 2011. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Penguin
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Published on
Jun 16, 2015
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9780698152526
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Language
English
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Genres
Business & Economics / Industries / Entertainment
Music / Business Aspects
Music / Recording & Reproduction
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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The overall retail value of the U.S. record industry was $11.5 billion in recent years. With the help of this new book you can get a piece of that business by starting your own independent record label. You will learn all the aspects of starting your record label business, finding your artists, pricing your products, marketing your business, and conducting your day-to-day business operations. This comprehensive new book will show you step-by-step how to set up, operate, and manage a financially successful independent record label, including startup costs for a record label, the equipment you will need, how to get your recordings made into CDs and distributed, marketing and promoting your music, and distribution methods.

The book covers the entire process of starting a small record label from startup to ongoing management in an easy-to-understand way by pointing out methods to increase your chances of success and showing you how to avoid the common mistakes that can doom a startup. The new companion CD-ROM contains all the forms used in the book in PDF format for easy use, as well as a detailed business plan, which will help you precisely define your business, identify your goals, and serve as your firm's résumé.

The basic components include a current and pro forma balance sheet, an income statement, and a cash flow analysis. While providing detailed instructions and examples, the author leads you through finding a location that will bring success, managing and training employees, accounting and bookkeeping procedures, auditing, successful budgeting, and profit planning development, as well as thousands of great tips and useful guidelines. You also will learn how to draw up a winning business plan, how to set up computer systems to save time and money, how to hire and keep a qualified, professional staff, how to keep bringing customers back, and how to generate high profile public relations.

In addition, you will become knowledgeable about basic cost control systems, equipment layout and planning, low and no cost ways to satisfy customers and build sales, and low cost marketing ideas. You will also learn how to get your music on sites where customers pay to download your music such as Rhapsody, iTunes, and others. With the help of this book you can turn your love of music into a highly successful business. The companion CD-ROM is included with the print version of this book; however is not available for download with the electronic version. It may be obtained separately by contacting Atlantic Publishing Group at sales@atlantic-pub.com

Atlantic Publishing is a small, independent publishing company based in Ocala, Florida. Founded over twenty years ago in the company presidentâe(tm)s garage, Atlantic Publishing has grown to become a renowned resource for non-fiction books. Today, over 450 titles are in print covering subjects such as small business, healthy living, management, finance, careers, and real estate. Atlantic Publishing prides itself on producing award winning, high-quality manuals that give readers up-to-date, pertinent information, real-world examples, and case studies with expert advice. Every book has resources, contact information, and web sites of the products or companies discussed.
“The industry bible” (Los Angeles Times), now updated, essential for anyone in the music business—musicians, songwriters, lawyers, agents, promoters, publishers, executives, and managers—trying to navigate the rapid transformation of the industry.

For more than twenty years, All You Need to Know About the Music Business has been universally regarded as the definitive guide to the music industry. Now in its ninth edition, this latest edition leads novices and experts alike through the crucial, up-to-the-minute information on the industry’s major changes in response to today’s rapid technological advances and uncertain economy.

Whether you are—or aspire to be—a performer, writer, or executive, veteran music lawyer Donald Passman’s comprehensive guide is an indispensable tool. He offers timely, authoritative information from how to select and hire a winning team of advisors and structure their commissions and fees; navigate the ins and outs of record deals, songwriting, publishing, and copyrights; maximize concert, touring, and merchandising deals; understand the digital streaming services; and how to take a comprehensive look at the rapidly transforming landscape of the music business as a whole.

The music industry is in the eye of the storm, when everyone in the business is scrambling to figure out what’s going to happen to the major labels and what it will mean for the careers of artists and business professionals. No musician, songwriter, entertainment lawyer, agent, promoter, publisher, manager, or record company executive—anyone who makes their living from music—can afford to be without All You Need to Know About the Music Business. As Adam Levine, lead singer and guitarist of Maroon 5, says, “If you want to be in music, you have to read this book.”
Includes a new afterword by the author • “Slaughter’s gift for illuminating large issues through everyday human stories is what makes this book so necessary for anyone who wants to be both a leader at work and a fully engaged parent at home.”—Arianna Huffington

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE WASHINGTON POST, NPR, AND THE ECONOMIST 

When Anne-Marie Slaughter accepted her dream job as the first female director of policy planning at the U.S. State Department in 2009, she was confident she could juggle the demands of her position in Washington, D.C., with the responsibilities of her family life in suburban New Jersey. Her husband and two young sons encouraged her to pursue the job; she had a tremendously supportive boss, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; and she had been moving up on a high-profile career track since law school. But then life intervened. Parenting needs caused her to make a decision to leave the State Department and return to an academic career that gave her more time for her family.

The reactions to her choice to leave Washington because of her kids led her to question the feminist narrative she grew up with. Her subsequent article for The Atlantic, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” created a firestorm, sparked intense national debate, and became one of the most-read pieces in the magazine’s history.

Since that time, Anne-Marie Slaughter has pushed forward, breaking free of her long-standing assumptions about work, life, and family. Though many solutions have been proposed for how women can continue to break the glass ceiling or rise above the “motherhood penalty,” women at the top and the bottom of the income scale are further and further apart.

Now, in her refreshing and forthright voice, Anne-Marie Slaughter returns with her vision for what true equality between men and women really means, and how we can get there. She uncovers the missing piece of the puzzle, presenting a new focus that can reunite the women’s movement and provide a common banner under which both men and women can advance and thrive.

With moving personal stories, individual action plans, and a broad outline for change, Anne-Marie Slaughter reveals a future in which all of us can finally finish the business of equality for women and men, work and family.

“I’m confident that you will be left with Anne-Marie’s hope and optimism that we can change our points of view and policies so that both men and women can fully participate in their families and use their full talents on the job.”—Hillary Rodham Clinton
Cowboys and Indies is nothing less than the first definitive history of the recording industry on both sides of the Atlantic.

From the invention of the earliest known sound-recording device in 1850s Paris to the CD crash and digital boom today, author and industry insider Gareth Murphy takes readers on an immensely entertaining and encyclopedic ride through the many cataclysmic musical, cultural, and technological changes that shaped a century and a half of the industry.

This invaluable narrative focuses especially on the game changers---the label founders, talent scouts, and legendary A&R men. Murphy highlights:

· Otto Heinemann's pioneer label Okeh, which spread blues and jazz "race" records across America

· how one man, Henry Speir, discovered nearly all the Delta blues legends (Robert Johnson, Charlie Patton, Son House, Tommy Johnson)

· Sam Phillips's seminal work with Chess and Sun Records

· John Hammond's discoveries (Billie Holiday, Aretha Franklin, Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Bruce Springsteen)

· the behind-the-scenes players of the British Invasion

· Clive Davis, Ahmet Ertegun, David Geffen, and the corporate music machine

· the Machiavellian moves of punk impresario Malcolm McLaren (Sex Pistols)

· Chris Blackwell's triumphs for Island Records (Bob Marley, U2)

· Sylvia Robinson and Tom Silverman, the hip-hop explorers behind the Sugarhill Gang, Grandmaster Flash, and Afrika Bambaataa

...and much, much more. Murphy also offers a provocative look at the future through the ruminations of such vanguard figures as Martin Mills (4AD, XL Recordings, Matador, Rough Trade) and genre-busting producer Rick Rubin (Run-D.M.C., Red Hot Chili Peppers, Metallica, Johnny Cash).

Drawing from memoirs, archives, and more than one hundred exclusive interviews with the legends of the record industry, including the founders and CEOs of Atlantic, Chrysalis, Virgin, A&M, Sub Pop, and Sire, this book reveals the secret history behind the hit-making craft. Remarkable in scope and impressive in depth, Cowboys and Indies chronicles the pioneers who set the stylus on the most important labels and musical discoveries in history.

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