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The Music Industry In 2009: Predicting The Unpredictable – MusicTank

The Music Industry In 2009: Predicting The Unpredictable

18 Jan 2009

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Big hitters exclusively reveal how they see the year ahead…

If 2008 put the V in volatility for the music industry, 2009 looks set to test powers of prediction to the limit.  This mighty economic force – which generates £billions for Britain – finds itself again in turmoil just as the credit crunch starts to hit leisure spending.

What is the true state of the industry? We ask the people at the heart of the battle – people whose secrets are rarely revealed. We – Marrakesh Records – have designed the ten most pertinent questions and collated these insiders’ telling and timely answers.

  • Is the music download about to consign the CD to extinction?
  • Can a radically revamped EMI regain traction, or do its investors and staff risk losing everything this year?
  • Against a backdrop of collapsing ad revenues and expanding online alternatives, what is the viability of print music magazines?
  • Meanwhile, web music sources like iTunes, Amazon, Nokia and Myspace battle for dominance. and face new rivals.
  • The implosion of key distribution channels – including Woolworths and Zavvi – has left the industry facing real challenges. Will consumers be able even to find music on the High Street by the end of 2009?
  • Online launches could be the way ahead. or was Radiohead’s success a one-off?
  • The 360-degree deal, where labels control everything from touring income to merchandise, faces new scrutiny from artists and managers.
  • Will credit-crunched fans find their pockets too stretched to go to concerts? Will Britain’s legendary festival scene find itself against the wall?
  • New political debate is set to ignite about the BBC’s state-funded involvement in Radio 1 and Radio 2.
  • And finally, is there really a chance of a revival of dear old Top of The Pops?


All in all, the easiest prediction would be: expect the unexpected.

But in this industry, perhaps more than most, successfully foreseeing the future is an inherent part of any job description.  The biggest players in the business, executives who put millions of investors’ and their own money where their mouths are, reveal their fears and hopes for 2009.  In this survey by Marrakesh Records the answers speak for themselves.