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With the upcoming sales of Warner and EMI, and the consequent industry shrinking, the forecast for the Latin Industry in the U.S. is rather interesting. I call it the 'Independent Latin Evolution' - artists, managers, publishers and almost everybody else is establishing some kind of structure to fill the void of the record companies. Although the labels still have a distribution system to sell physical product, many artists are choosing to be distributed by independents or have a digital distribution only; a new Latin independent music industry is shaping up.
This evolution of the Independents is comprised of both new and established acts who are releasing their own records to radio stations and creating new avenues of distribution. Most examples of the first are crossing over from social networks like Facebook and YouTube to the mainstream. A good example of the second is “Intocable”, a band from Texas and former EMI act that decided to go independent and “El Chapo de Sinaloa” a former act from DISA (Universal), among many others, that concluded that labels don’t have much to offer to established artists beyond distribution.
For Latin independent Music Publishers, the competition of hundreds of artists becoming their own publishers is a big challenge; some are trying to sell their operations, some others are signing their own artists, some others are merging and most are refining the search of songwriters and songs to be able to offer the best material. Advances of money to songwriters belong to the past and only those who are talented or lucky enough to have a single will make money in Public Performance.
New artists still need a record label and the best songs to break into the market; and music publishers work hard to be present in any new release. Mexican Regional music is the genre of music that still dominates the U.S. Latin Market. Independent Music Publishers are represented in that genre by companies that operate on both sides of the border, especially from Guadalajara and Monterrey in Mexico and Los Angeles, San Antonio and Houston in the U.S.
This trend is expected to consolidate and many more independent companies will be created to confirm that this Latin Independent evolution is here to stay.
© 2011 Maximo Aguirre
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