A Sleazy Interview

just completed my first techno track. It reminds me a lot of Coil's Backwards album. I dig it kinda. It has some weird voice loops that I manipulated in fruity loops but a lot of synth lines were done using Reason. In a lot of ways i hate that program but it can be useful.

Also I finished my music business term paper today. hence a state of relief, it included in interview I did with Peter "Sleazy" Christopherson.

Here it is

An interview with Peter Christopherson of Coil
In late November I contacted five established artists who have broken away from major labels and have established their own. Only one had replied. Peter Christopherson has had a very incognito presence in music history, but very important. He has done album covers for Pink Floyd. He was a member of the first industrial music group Throbbing Gristle. He has produced music videos for the likes of Sepultura and Nine Inch Nails. Pete Christopherson is also an established remixer who has done work for Nine Inch Nails, Depeche Mode, and Orbital. He owns Threshold House, a record label he started that exclusively releases recordings of his band Coil.

What provoked you change from a 3rd party distributor to self-distributing your own records?
If you are talking about being on a 'major' label, we changed because, like many third party distributors they did not pay us. (At least not reliably and on time.)

What have been the benefits for you from changing over to independent distribution?

Firstly financial, 100% of a small amount is always more than 10 or 14 % of a larger amount, which you don't actually receive...
I'm sorry to be facetious but I’m afraid I do not have any faith in a system which relies on the honesty of a company to VOLUNTEER the information of you how much they owe you, AND then to pay you every three or six months.
The music business model is fundamentally flawed.
It’s true that publishing companies were invented to maintain a check on the record companies, but they have lunch together for chrissake.
ALL the record companies I have ever been associated with, from the smallest to the largest (EMI) frequently do not appear to even KNOW how much they owe anyone at any given time, and often claim to have paid too much, and want some back. Maybe the appearance of ineptitude is just a show for business purposes, but in my long experience I think it’s more likely that they do NOT, in fact, have any clue.
Of course working with independent distribution companies has all the same risks and problems associated with the majors, UNLESS they are small enough that one person actually has a fair idea what's going on financially, AND you can reach them on the phone, AND you can tell if they’re telling you the truth.

What types of problems have had to deal with now that did not have to when under labels supervision?

Well all independent distribution companies are different.
In the case of Coil for example, World Serpent simply pressed up, and sold our records internationally to various shops and other distributors, then collected the money and split the profit with us. [In theory at least - Eventually they were unable to continue, as a consequence of rising bad debts, closing mom-and-pop record stores and/or mismanagement. They went out of business owing us over $50K].
Even when it was running properly, World Serpent did not do any advertising, promotion or press of any kind, so if we wanted any, we had to it ourselves.
Just making interesting records is pretty hard at the best of times, so sometimes we could have done with some help in the area of promotion, even if we'd had to pay for it in the long run.

Are there any benefits you miss from being part of another label?

If it’s a good label, bands certainly benefit from the association with other more famous or popular label-mates. Its a sad fact of human nature that people tend to buy more from the same rack / label / website as other records/bands they have liked, rather than bother to walk, or click, a few steps away to try something new. At one point Coil were going to be on Trent Reznor's vanity label and if that had happened, we would certainly have sold a lot more CDs, though whether that would have been a good thing, I cant say.
In the end, it was not to be.
There is no doubt that, under the old method of distribution in the last century, where you went into Tower and saw what just came out, there on the rack... At that time, the clout or power of the major to say to the chain store "If you want these Madonna records you have to display these PTV (or whoever) ones too" DID get weirder records into a lot more stores (esp. in the US) than would otherwise have carried them.
I'm afraid I have always been a slight snob, and would rather sell fewer records to a market of discerning customers who appreciate going out of their way to find my stuff, and take care of it over the years, rather than have my record sit un-played on the shelf (or worse, in the box of old cds in a thrift store or Car Boot sale) of someone who just bought it because they liked Nine Inch Nails.

Also the Ugliest dog in the world just died at just short of age 15
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