Tuesday, January 30, 2007

An Ernest Talk About the Music Recording Industry

Last Friday, we had Ernest Prakasa, Radio Promo Executive of SonyBMG - Indonesia for our sharing session.

For most of the Mavericks, the subject was very interesting because we haven't had much knowledge about the industry itself from the perspective of the companies. However, for some it was more personal. Yasha is also a manager for a musician, while Mersa, apparently had once submitted a demo to SonyBMG and never heard any news about it from them! At least Mersa's career in PR looks more promising than that...

So the Mavs learned that music demo tapes and CDs that people submit gets dumped in a storage room of the Artist and Repertoire department. I can imagine that while it seems that its just a messy room with thousands of dusty CDs and CVs, it's also a room of broken hopes, of the thousands who wish to one day become popstars or rockstars.

We also found out from Ernest the general idea on what they really do for the artist. He said that SonyBMG handle the marketing and promotion of the album and its songs, while buliding the image of the artist is the responsibility of the artist management. The label can only give advice about the image building, he said. Previously we thought that image building is part of the label's responsibilities.

I think SonyBMG as a big company do not think that PR as an important part for the company. We discussed a lot about how they handle the information published to media. Ernest say they cannot do much in managing information about their artist. For example, they cannot do much when in a press conference for an album launching, the media only interested in the personal life of the celebrities, not in the album launching itself.

I think as a company, it is time for them to start caring about it. They must give the media information that has value for both sides, and not simply do a one way pitch.

Another interesting story about this sharing session is that some associate were really eager to know how they can be signed for an album with SonyBMG. Hmmm, sounds like some of the associates have secret ambition to be celebrities. So when's Indonesian Idol gonna start the audition round for Jakarta?

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