It must be said, the music industry is definitely not one for the faint hearted. Today we are looking at London producer / artist SoniK Fusion, the highs and lows of the musical journey and how it´s perhaps the best time ever to be a musical artist.
London producer SoniK Fusion had his first track “I´m Ready” included on the Streatbeats promo CD for DJs and radio stations way back in 1998, the track was amongst songs by major artists at the time such as Beverley Knight, Pete Rock and hip hop superstars Brand Nubian. The track received very positive reviews from club DJs, got radio support, things were looking very promising but without label support the track was sadly never commercially released, more on that later…
SoniK Fusion moved on with new music and produced Monsoon a fast, ethnic fusion, drum and base infused track, this track did achieve commercial success in the early 2000s while SoniK Fusion were signed to London artist management agency DV8 and “Monsoon” was picked up by Transient Records in 2001 for their Mashed Mellow Grooves 3 Ibiza compilation CD and also licenced to Metropol Records who included Monsoon on their Cassagrande Lounge compilation album amongst popular artists such as Groove Armada, Thievery Corporation and Rae & Christian.
Back to the music business, the early 2000s was when Napster and MP3 file sharing appeared on the scene and well, to put it mildly, a hand grenade was thrown into the music industry and carnage ensued. The music industry somehow survived and came through to the other side with the first unlikely lifeline thrown by Steve Jobs. Prior to itunes the industry had been scrambling to fight the rise of MP3 file sharing, massive loss of revenues and how to make sense of the changing landscape. Rival labels were scrambing to reluctantly work together but were getting nowhere. itunes and Steve Jobs changed that. Steve Jobs reportedly got the key music industry honchos together in one room and told them what´s what, the rest as they say is history.
itunes provided the first credible digital distribution platform, and importantly for the industry was not owned or controlled by any of the major labels. It provided security in the form of encyption and revenues for downloads on a growing eco system driven by the explosion in popularity of ipods. That time seems like light years ago compared to the digital music landscape of today with Spotify, Deezer, Apple music, iTunes and the others. Streaming is where it seems most music is discovered and consumed by millions around the world. Revenues can once again be earned and controls are largely in place to protect the rights of artists and labels. It´s no longer such a wild place and sure, free MP3 sharing goes on just like the sharing of TV shows and movies goes on in the dark recesses of the internet, but most people nowadays watch their TV / movies legally on streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon prime rather than rely on illegal downloads. Order has been restored, the music industry is clearly nothing like the hey days of the 70s and 80s when big money was made from the physical sales of music but it´s turned into something else altogether, something much more accessible and democratic, the iron grip of the major labels has been loosened considerably.
So now, what has all this got to do with SoniK Fusion you might ask? A lot actually. SoniK Fusion started out just before the industry went into meltdown, had some success, did other things for a while and now are back in the studio and releasing music on their terms on their own label 73 VIVA RECORDS. It is now so much easier for artists to record, release and promote their music than ever before. With worldwide distribution SoniK Fusion are finally in full control and eager to reach new fans and get their unique blend of deep grooves and fusion out there.
To celebrate the “rebirth” of SoniK Fusion the track “I´m Ready” from the studio archives has been remastered and released on all streaming platforms as well as itunes and Google music for download on 24th Feb 2020.
This is without any shadow of a doubt a very exciting time for music, artists are unhindered, labels no longer “control” music and everyone has a fair shot. What hasn´t changed is that talent, perseverance and hard work are as essential as ever, only now there is a legitimate path for musicians to reach a global audience without barriers. Back in the day, music videos were expensive and you had to get onto the MTV playlist to get exposure, remember MTV? Well now there´s Youtube, anyone can record a music video and get it out there. The audience is there in the millions, it´s the artists job to reach the audience and sure it ain´t easy but it´s at least possible. Social media is maybe the glue that sticks it all together and makes reaching and communicating with fans around the world quite easy.
Technology has disrupted many industries and the early disruption of the music industry very nearly killed it, but now that the dust has settled, good times are upon us once again. The music industry will live on and no doubt keep changing as technology changes but where we are now is a very exciting time for musicians and listeners alike.
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I´m ready by SoniK Fusion on Soundcloud
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