We all know that record sales aren't what they used to be, but what's gone down in 2014 is staggering: Not one artist's album has hit the million-selling mark this year, according to Forbes.
If that trend continues, 2014 will be the first year since platinum-certification was introduced by the RIAA in 1976 that no musician has hit that mark, according to Death And Taxes. Only one album has gone platinum this year: the Frozen soundtrack. But with releases from industry heavyweights like Taylor Swift, Eminem, Lil Wayne and Nicki Minaj planned for Q4, we might yet have a platinum-selling artist this year.
It's certainly an indication of the state of the music industry, and Irv Gotti, the platinum-selling producer and co-founder of Mudrer Inc Records, doesn't like it.
"The business of music is OVER," he captioned a photo on Instagram of a screenshot of the Death And Taxes article.
"Not 1 Album that has come out in 2014 is gonna be certified Platinum. That's f--king crazy. Now don't get me wrong. An artist can still come out and make some money. Doing shows. But for me. A label owner. And a Producer. My money was largely based on record sales. Which there isn't any. Anymore."
As a producer behind hits like Ja Rule's "Always On Time," DMX's "What's My Name?" and Jay Z's "Can I Get A..." among many more, the Queens native would cash in on production credits.
"I used to charge 250k for 1 beat," he continued. "Yessss my n---as. 250k for 1 beat. The budgets where so big and labels knew I would deliver a hit to sell there albums. So it all made sense. Then I had a crazy producer agreement where I would make money off of record 1 sold. With no recoupment of the 250k. So basically. All those records you heard with me whispering murder inc. And they was going #1. Oh. I was getting it. Majorly."
As the times changed, so did the returns for producers.
"Fast forward to a few years ago. I'm doing a song for a platinum selling artist. I finish the record cause they asked me to do it. All they had was f--king 10k. I was like. Is this a joke. So this explains when people ask me to do music again. Which I love with a passion. But I need money for my genius."
Gotti pointed to U2's recent partnership with Apple to release their album for free as an example of why it's an uphill battle for artists now.
"Technology and the world has flipped and turned its back on the music biz," he wrote. "They feel music should be free now. Look at U2. One of the biggest bands. They gave away there album on iTunes. Gave it away. But there good. They probably charged ITunes a fee for that. And now with the album for free. They will go on a world tour and make millions. But what about the label. And the producers. What do they get? Where is there royalty off of a free album. It's f--ked up."
"And the government won't step in and help this business. Why? They hate us. The music biz. Hip hop I. General has changed and altered more good n---az lives than anything else. They think we are all drug dealers. Hustlers. Pimps. They could care less. If his happened to the TV or Movie Industry. Best believe they will fix it. Not music. You think they like seeing Bobby Schmurda get f--king money? Nah. Slow us down. #pissed"
Tell 'em how you feel, Irv.