Tony Vitti, Music Strategist, Advisor and Marketer

Why I Will Not Sign A Record Deal

February 7, 2018

I have been touring as a solo artist for the last couple of years after being featured on French National TV in front of several million viewers.

Actually, this led me to move from France to the United States and more precisely, New York City.

There, I have been working for several other artists as music producer or singer / songwriter and I had the opportunity to see the inside of the machine called “The Music Industry”.

Few are those who can say they saw what record labels are and I am one of them.

Let me say it straight out of the bat : it’s ugly.

Super ugly.

In 2018, if Universal, Warner or Sony BMG came knocking on my door and were like “Hey, we want to sign you, here’s a big juicy check”, I’d be like :

Ohhhh, Hell no.

The reason is simple : Labels hold you by the balls and will never let you go.

You may not think this is the truth, but not only did I see it before my eyes, several signed superstars / celebrities are backing me up and showing how tough it is to break these record deals.

Take the example of Jared Leto for example and his band Thirty Seconds to Mars. They released an amazing documentary called Artifact where they show you their insane battle against their record label and how enslaved they are to them.

Or even more recently, the story of Kesha, who has been sexually assaulted by her music producer part of her own label at SONY BMG. Despite the incredible support by other stars of the business and her own case, the judge would never want to break the deal between her and the record label !

Coming back on Artefact, here is a little video extracted from the documentary, explaining the harsh reality about the Music Industry and how you get stuck in a vicious loop if you sign this record deal :

Basically, you sign a deal for a few million dollars, and those are not given to you. They’re a loan, with interests that you will never stop paying back to the label.

Moreover, at the end of the day, you are not even the owner of your material. You’re simply a shareholder (and not a major one) of your own art.

I recently vloged about it, let me know what you think !

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