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Yandex Spandex

So, I recently got a few bucks in Yandex streams, along with some additional Deezer dollars.

It just goes right back into my "make more music" fund.  It's kind of fascinating really.  So, I make tunes, then I throw them up online and people stream them, all around the world, and I get maybe a fraction of a cent from each stream.

Now, it's not much, yes, but... Here's a scenario.

Let's say, a musician makes a million dollars from their music career.

Let's stop right here, first, I have no music career.  I make music in my room.  I don't have a studio.  I don't pay a big time producer, I don't hire studio musicians, I don't have a recording assistant, I'm not on a label who takes a cut, and I don't have a manger... I don't have to pay for gas and tolls and airline tickets...

Basically, I make the music, I pay a small fee to copyright it and post it online, and away it goes.

I then make like 10 bucks here, or 5 bucks there.

Okay, so?

So... Let's look at this from a gross revenue and profit perspective.

Career musicians have lots of overhead.  All the stuff I mentioned above.  They have to pay for.

What about health insurance?  What about other benefits?

What about all those meals out on the road.


SO, let's say a musician makes a million in sales.

What's the actual profit?  I would argue that it's actually really small.  Assume a 40 percent tax rate... 600k left, manager cut, label cut, gas, road food, HOTELS, tour bus rental fee, airplane tickets, hiring extra musicians, lighting person for the stage, sound person for every show...

What's left?

20 bucks?

I mean, hey, who knows, it could be 20 bucks!  Okay, so fine, you get to travel the world, which could be added as an intangible cost benefit.

How much is world travel worth?  But, traveling and playing shows is hard work.  I know people who do it, they say it's fun, but it's also exhausting.

SO, if I make that same amount of end profit by just making songs and posting them online... One COULD argue that by SAVING the overhead cost... I'm really making the same amount as a career musician who makes a million dollars in sales.

We both net the same end amount.

Although I'm minus the whole world travel experience thing.

So, there's always that.  Although if the musician travels the world and goes to a lot of after show parties or goes out drinking a lot, that could be an added cost too.  I've heard doing drugs can be very expensive.

So, by staying at home and sipping tea... I could be up on that.

Let's say I just make songs, and sit at home in my PJs... Or, maybe I sit and home in spandex.  I don't.  But, I COULD if I wanted to.

Then I'd be making income from Yandex while wearing spandex.

It's just fun to say.

Anyway, but what I was thinking is, if I get to the point where I can make enough songs, where I just upload them... That I can make even MORE money than someone would traditionally make as a touring musician.  I feel like that would be pretty cool.  Because I don't have all those additional costs.  SO, that means I could instead put the money right back into making more music.

But, anyway, it's a curious thing, this streaming of my music.  I'd love to travel and be able to play shows... Perhaps one day.  I wonder if I have fans around the world who wish that I would come play live in their town.  I wonder.

That would be cool.  And I hope to do all that one day.

There was actually a guy who used to work at my job, who worked full time but he also would tour with his band on the weekends.  He played in a punk band and they would book shows all over.  He actually also used his two weeks vacation to travel to Europe and played a show every night for 10 days straight.  I think that's awesome.  He basically used all the money he made to pay for the trip.

Which I guess is actually completely cool because it really is all about that experience.

Art is about experience when it comes down to it... it shouldn't be about making a profit.  It should be about emotion... and making a connection with someone.  About exciting the brain and getting people to feel.  That's what it's all about, giving people a passionate feeling.

That's how I've always look at music.  It makes you FEEL more than you do usually.  It turns on your emotions and turns them up.

The business part of it is just business so that you can make more of it.  But it's really about the emotional response to the actual art.

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