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When Record Deals Go Wrong, Pt 1.

Posted by Jonathan Parker, 22 June 2008 · 1374 views

For many singers and bands, a record deal is the ultimate dream come true. But what many don’t realize is that unfortunately, there are hundreds of artists who get signed each year yet their albums never reach the shelves of record stores.

New artists face many challenges when first breaking into the recording arts industry. One challenge is that more established artists’ projects often take priority. For example, if a label goes over budget marketing label veterans, artists who are new to the label may find that their projects continue to get pushed back.

Recording artist Tigah moved to Atlanta to purse a career in the recording arts industry. He spent his days working at a local mall and his evenings working on his music. It was a struggle, but he was determined to see his dreams come true. And they did. After a lot of hard work and networking, he landed a meeting with producer Jermaine Dupri who’s responsible for the recent success of popular talents such as Usher and Mariah Carey. After a successful meeting with the industry mogul, who was a vice president at the label at that time, Tigah got his big break and landed a record deal.

Unfortunately, while this should have been the most exciting time of his life, things went downhill. First, he didn’t have a strong understanding of the business practices in the recording arts industry. He signed away his publishing rights because he didn’t know any better and in his excitement, he failed to consult with others in the industry that could have counseled and guided him. Secondly, there were changes at the label (Columbia) and he got lost in the shuffle. Because he hadn’t had the opportunity to complete his album and he wasn’t generating revenue for the label, his project was placed on hold.

While the label did release some of his music to DJs to help promote him, there was another talent at the label that was generating revenue and already had a substantial fan base. That artist was Bow Wow and his project became the label’s priority. Tigah watched his dreams go up in smoke, while Bow Wow became more and more popular.

Tigah eventually lost his record deal, but despite his disappointment, he is still focusing on his music. In fact he started his own label with a business partner. He advises other talents just starting out that once they secure a deal, they shouldn’t consider that the finish line. Instead, he urges them to work hard to keep the momentum going and surround themselves with people who can help guide them and assist them in making wise choices.

Stay tuned to tomorrow’s blog when we talk more about how new artists often lose their record deals. To discuss this topic with other Star Search Casting members, visit and our
http://www.StarSearchCasting.com community forums.