Anytime I reveal that I work for a music company, I get a mixture of intrigue and pity in response. When I add that it's a start-up music company, shock and awe get added to the mix. People can't fathom the risk of starting a business in an industry that is imploding under intense margin pressure. And since it is a start-up, I don't even have the glamour of a rock-and-roll lifestyle as consolation. So, people are left with the impression that I must just love music so much I don't mind starving.
It's true that I love music, but perhaps the more relevant truth is, music is important. Of course, it's not as basic as the physical needs of food and shelter, or the emotional need of love. In fact, its value is that it transcends basic existence, as a universal source of inspiration and a reminder of what imagination makes possible. It's also fun: a reminder of what makes life worth living. I'm in this business to keep the people dreaming and dancing.
I also think there is a better way to structure the music industry: more music, cheaper prices, more longevity. I think few doubt that the current system is ill-fated. To that end I've devoted my work days and this blog. GarageBand.com is just one piece of an emerging puzzle and can't do everything that needs to be done. My hope is that my ideas will get picked up, circulated, discussed and maybe implemented by all the others out there who want to see a better future for music. To paraphrase a one-time boss of mine, we're either geniuses or idiots and history will decide which.