Hi, everyone. I hope all is well. This is Travis. We're at home now, working on a new album and some exciting other stuff that we really can't talk about right now. It's keeping me hella busy, that's for sure.
So I thought I would just post a little something we got in the e-mail today from Atlantic Records. I know this isn't the most professional thing in the world, but when people write things like this, it's like... what is in the water in Los Angeles? It really is shocking. So I just have to share. Here it is:
Hi, I'm xxx from xxx's office at Atlantic Records, and he is
interested in checking out THE DISMEMBERMENT PLAN, the song "TIME BOMB"
I already wrote Jessica at firstname.lastname@example.org, and she responded by
referring us to the local record store. You might know that A&R people are
more likely to give up on the band, than to go buy their album. (emphasis added)
Can you believe these people? OH NO! I BETTER HURRY AND SEND THEM AN ALBUM BEFORE THEY GIVE UP! It's like being told to hurry up and blow someone before they lose their erection.
I'm going to take a moment and tell the major label music world what's wrong and why they're losing money--and no, it isn't because of Napster. There is a generation of talented album artists out there that are alienated, once and for all, from the whole major label way of business. And no, album artists don't make you that much immediately, but whose catalog from the seventies do you want to own if you wanna make a buck? Steely Dan's, Joni Mitchell's, or David Cassidy's? That's right, it ain't the last one. David fucking Bowie is selling bonds on his catalog. Danny Bonaduce from the Partridge Family is not.
People are always trying to massage me into going off on major labels because of our experience, and I never do, because dammit I'm a man and I have a life to live. God bless 'em, whatever business model they have in mind, whether or not it involves me. But the current business model they have is WACK. And you know what? I'm gonna go there now. We've got four albums out now. We wrote "The City," "What Do You Want Me To Say," "Time Bomb," "You Are Invited," and "The Ice of Boston.," amongst other alternate-universe hits. We are obviously talented as shit and in it for a lifetime. I mean, you can't front on us now. The fact that these people can't even see that, hey, maybe we could actually make a buck or two with this Dismemberment Plan--YEAR IN YEAR OUT, mind you, not for a NY minute--totally eludes them. And I am 100% fine with this! I'm making 24,000 a year right now and about to make even more. The future's so bright I gotta wear shades. And then aboveground, you have all these labels talking about how because of Napster (uh, whatever) and September 11 (which is sick) their sales are flat. OH MY GOD, maybe it's because you're a bunch of morons that can't tell a good investment from a Ponzi Scheme? I am a total believer in hi-tech entertainment--Britney Spears and Ricky Martin and all that--but you gotta be able to see the originals and visionaries too, and man, right now, these big companies just don't. Like, Alicia Keys is their idea of an artist--she actually plays piano! That's, uh, talented, right? That's "real," right?
And that's why they're all barely breaking even right now.
I feel like the days of giants walking the earth in terms of the big labels is over. John Hammond, Ahmet Ertegun, David Geffen, Jerry Wexler... the real dudes who knew real musicians. Now it's just a bunch of 26-year-olds with RFTC tats who want to tell me about my integrity but have no more power at their company than the mail room dudes.
That's it. Good God, I've never gone there before. But I just can't take it. We get these shocking e-mails from these people in people's office (It's never actually them) for records and I can't believe what they say. You'd think they'd even try to fake having done their homework. Guess not!
Good luck, White Stripes!