Why Independent Is The New Record Label Deal

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  • Post last modified:January 16, 2023
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There are several issues that can arise when artists and record labels become mainstream. One issue is that the artist may lose creative control over their music. This can happen when a record label wants the artist to create music that will sell well, rather than music that is true to the artist’s vision. Additionally, artists may also lose rights to their music when they sign with a record label. This can happen when a label owns the rights to an artist’s music, which can make it difficult for the artist to make money from their music or to control how it is used.

Another issue is that the artist may not be properly compensated for the use of their music. This can happen when a record label takes a large percentage of the royalties earned from an artist’s music, leaving the artist with less money. Additionally, artists may also not receive proper credit for their work, which can make it difficult for them to build a career or to establish themselves as a respected artist.

Lastly, the artist may feel pressure to conform to the expectations of the industry and fans, which can lead to them create music that is not true to their own style or vision. This can lead to burnout and loss of passion for music-making.

Overall, while becoming mainstream can be a great opportunity for artists, it also comes with potential downsides that they should be aware of before signing to a record label or releasing their music on a larger scale.


Independent record labels are becoming more popular for a few reasons. One reason is that technology has made it easier for artists to produce and distribute their own music. With the rise of digital platforms like Bandcamp, Soundcloud, and YouTube, independent artists can now reach a global audience without the need for a traditional record label.

Another reason is that independent labels often offer more creative control and freedom for artists. Independent labels are typically smaller and more flexible than major labels, and they may be more willing to work with artists on projects that are outside of mainstream trends. This can be particularly appealing for artists who want to maintain creative control over their music.

Additionally, Independent labels are often more transparent and fair in their business practices and artist compensation. This is because they are smaller and often run by artists and fans themselves, who may have a better understanding of the struggles and realities of the industry.

Lastly, the music industry has shifted to a more DIY and independent model, where artists and fans alike are more inclined to support and discover new talent outside of mainstream channels. This has led to a rise of independent labels as a source of fresh and diverse music.

Overall, independent record labels are becoming more popular because they offer artists more creative control and freedom, fair business practices, and a path to reach an audience that values authenticity over commercialism.


When looking for a record deal, there are several red flags to watch out for:

  1. Unclear or one-sided contracts: Be wary of any contract that is unclear or one-sided. Make sure you understand the terms of the deal and that they are fair and reasonable.
  1. Advances and royalties: Be cautious of deals that offer large advances but take a large percentage of royalties. A large advance may sound appealing, but it could mean you will not see much money from royalties in the long run.
  1. Ownership of your music: Be sure to understand who will own the rights to your music. Some record labels may take ownership of your music, which can limit your ability to make money from it in the future.
  1. Pressure to conform: Be aware of any pressure to conform to the label’s expectations or to change your style of music. A good label should support and encourage your artistic vision, not try to change it.
  1. Lack of transparency: Be wary of any label that is not transparent about its financials or business practices. A good label should be open and honest about its finances and how they plan to promote and market its music.
  1. Limited control over your career: Be aware of any record label that wants to control every aspect of your career. A good label should give you the freedom to make your own decisions about your career and should support your vision for your future.

It’s important to remember that a record deal should be a partnership, not a one-sided agreement. It’s important to do your research and make sure that the label you sign with is reputable, and that the terms of the deal are fair and reasonable for both parties.

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