(by Pia Fridhill) The music industry has changed fundamentally over the past 10-15 years, and NOT for the better. Like with all profit driven markets, maximizing income and reducing risks remain the main interest. Music has always been a high risk issue: is the song a hit or not? Will the artist break through or will he/she flop? These days, the music industry has figured out a formula for maximizing a song's hit potential. I've learned about the so called Pop Factories, where dozens of professional song writers and producers jam all day long in order to spit out hundereds of potential hit songs per month. The same chords are used in different variations, the same intervals are sung with little variations and the same computer sounds lay the ground for the mainstream sludge we hear every day on the radio. Add a good looking, amazing vocalist and some professional video footage and the hit is on its way.
This is as far away from our way of writing (and treating) music as it gets. While the music industry is producing songs in a large-scale livestock farming setting, putting quantity before quality, standardizing the creative process assembly-line-wise and pushing it out through their own publishing channels, we watch with horror how the opportunities for creative artists slowly dwindle in the tidal wave of this new "Industrial Music". And since the majority of the people watch American Idol, Voice of Germany, Britain's got talent and similar shows, and since they listen to the radio while driving, cooking, reading etc. - their brains get so used to hearing and seeing such low level entertainment that they start to expect nothing else. The brain is wired to go for what feels most comfortable, that which is served, the path of least resistance. Slowly, curiosity dies and bluntness prevails.
The song 'Get It While You Can' is an hommage to the original Authenticity, Creativity and Musical Festivity that comes with writing music not for profit, but for the sake of Music Itself. It's a proclamation against the musical devaluation disaster as well as a call for our generation to listen to true music while you still can, before the Industry Music robs us of the stamina to go on composing. Musicianship is turning into an expensive hobby, expenses comparable to that of high level horse riding while income is close to nil, what with the close-to-nothing payments of streaming services and the like. Sure, there are countless of opportunities to market oneself on the internet, countless! There are also professional publishing firms that use these marketing tools 8-10 hours a day to spin one song or artist for months at an end. We don't have that time since we have work "normal jobs" that pay the rent. And if you don't put in 8-10 hours a day into marketing your music, you don't stand a chance to break through the wall!
Stefan Michalke composed this song and I wrote (and re-wrote) the lyrics shortly after Prince died in April 2016. There's a reference to his fighting for artist rights in the lyrics and it's also the first time I've ever rapped! Hope you like it.