Saturday, November 26, 2016

Music Industry & the 2016 Presidential Election

First in a Series

It is the Saturday after Thanksgiving 2016.  Families have now come together to discuss the results of the 2016 Unites States of America Presidential Election.  Although their may be some "Houses Divided," the United States has a Republican President Elect and a majority in both houses of Congress.  Nonetheless, we have a Congress and Country divided.  Businessman President-Elect Donald Trump won the majority of electoral votes 290 to Former First Lady, Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who garnered 232.  Secretary Clinton won the popular vote over Businessman Donald Trump 64.4 million to 62.3 million.  2.1 million people more voted for Clinton over Trump.

Many music artists supported Secretary Clinton over Donald Trump.  General wisdom speaks of artists wishing more work needs to be done for homeless, hungry, peace, climate, wage inequality, freedom of speech and many social justice issues relative to race, gender, policing, trade, government spending to name just a few.  Many argue that all Americans essentially want the same actions taken.
It is just a matter of how to get there and how to get it done.

The music industry is going through its own discovery.  A journey that changes minute by minute with the advent of new technologies and the deliverability of content to the market consumer.  Spotify appears to be the leader in delivering musical content to the consumer for free or for a monthly subscription.  The company is outpacing its competition with data collection used to provide what the consumer wants.

The big winner today in digital advertising is the advent of interactive delivery of content to the consumer as opposed to the consumer searching for what they want.  At least, consumers now have both options to their avail.  Data allows Spotify to make suggestions to the consumer via information gathered over time (short and long) and also interacting by allowing the consumer to give it a thumbs up or thumbs down.  Same feature is provided by Netflix and others.  Some people are now migrating away from conventional cable and satellite content deliverability to Netflix and You Tube as their entertainment providers.

Now that the Thanksgiving 2016 dinner conversation has concluded and people are ruminating over their own set of feelings and the reality of the state of the nation, music is still listened and film is still viewed.  The winners?  The winners are the artists who touch the individuals heart and soul through their work.  The individual wins as well.  Technology delivers the art.  Business sets up the rules, payment and deliverability.  How will the new administration, which controls the executive branch, the legislative branch and will have one Supreme Court Justice to appoint immediately, govern the business of of music and art?

Please feel free to provide your comments.  They are graciously appreciated.  Below, please find an article published in Billboard Magazine prior to the election.

All the best until next time,

Markie Z (@markandrewz)

Better Late Than Never: Artists Finally Weighing In on 2016 Presidential Election
At this point in the past two presidential elections, the roster of A-list artists backing the candidates (okay, mostly President Obama) were like the line-up for the greatest concert never staged: Eminem, Jay Z, Pearl Jam, Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder, Faith Hill, Madonna, Mariah Carey, Beastie Boys, Beyoncé, the Roots, plus dozens of others in Obama's corner, and Pat Boone, Daddy Yankee, Charlie Daniels, Lee Greenwood, John Rich, Cowboy Troy, Kid Rock and Ted Nugent for Republican candidates John McCain (2008) and/or Mitt Romney (2012). 
But until pretty recently, with a few big-name exceptions, the musical world was much quieter this cycle. Why? It's hard to say, as this election is historic in ways slightly different than 2008's election of the nation's first black president. Faced with the choice between two very unpopular candidates -- one with the potential to be the country's first female commander in chief and the other the first U.S. leader with no military or government experience -- Hollywood has kept it on the DL for the most part.
With less than 50 days to go, though, that began to change over the past few weeks, in large part due to a number of prominent female musicians who've re-iterated their loud and proud support for Clinton. From Barbra Streisand -- who has said #ImWithHer for over a year -- to Katy Perry and Madonna -- who both got naked this week to stand with Clinton and encourage voting -- the former Sec. of State is ringing up some big endorsements. Aside from Katy, Madge and Babs, other musical Hillary supporters include CherLady Gaga, P!nk, Cyndi Lauper, Miley Cyrus, Pharrell Williams, Kelly Clarkson, Meghan Trainor, Elton John and John Legend.
Clinton's even gotten a thumbs up from Mexican ranchera icon Vicente Fernández -- who can't vote in our election -- but who said, "together, we can," and Los Tigres del Norte, who condemned Trump's insults against Mexican immigrants while endorsing Clinton. Another major artist who won't be in the voting booth but finds it hard to keep his opinions to himself, U2's Bono, recently said he was concerned Trump could "destroy" the very idea of America.
Kesha threw her hat in the ring on Wednesday (Sept. 28) when she came to the defense of former Miss Universe Alicia Machado, who continued to get fat-shamed by Trump after Clinton brought up her rival's misogynist comments about women in the past during the first presidential debate.
Last month, Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi and Jimmy Buffett performed at a private fundraiser for Clinton, while Streisand has taken a number of opportunities this summer to announce @ImWithHer while making fun of Trump and penning a scathing essay for the Huffington Post entitled "Facts Matter." Typically outspoken American rock icon Bruce Springsteen has mostly kept his powder dry this cycle, but recently called Trump a "moron" in Rolling Stone and said he thinks Clinton would be a "very, very good president."  

Girls were talking 2day & Were AFRAID‼️

Trump, on the other hand, has had a good deal less musical co-signs, the most prominent coming from Kid Rock, Wayne Newton, as well as usual suspects Rich, Nugent, Boone and Kenny Rogers. Kiss' loud and proud bassist/singer Gene Simmons was labeled the "Donald Trump of rock" recently by his son, Nick Simmons. 
Las Vegas icon Newton went on Fox News earlier this month and said that if America has "ever needed Donald Trump, it's now." Kid Rock, an avowed Republican, hasn't stumped for the billionaire real estate mogul (though he told Rolling Stone in February that he was "digging" the candidate), but when Clinton made a crack about Rock possibly getting a cabinet position in a Donald White House, the Detroit rapper joked, "I don't care what your politics are, funny is funny!"

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