Is Radio, Major Labels Fading Into Oblivion?

by Delroy Souden

(October 14, 2009) It is with much hesitation that I write this article; however, if I choose not to say what's on my mind, it will leave me feeling like a big hypocrite so here I go.

I have noticed that the state of the economy has left some of us feeling helpless, withdrawn into our own little worlds and quite honestly, depressed and sometimes detached from those we love dearly. The same appears to be true with the music industry. The music industry seems to be helpless, not knowing what to do to make a strong comeback. Is this a sign of the times?

Recently, the FCC auctioned 122 licenses that netted $5.25 million and nearly a third were left unsold. This off course is a sign of the current climate in which we are. Radio is losing advertisers and some stations are slowly fading away. Have the ills of the music industry finally caught up with them? Will there be a recovery from the mess that they are currently in, or will they continue to sink deep into oblivion? Well, if this isn't sending a strong message, then I don't know what is! Suddenly, it seems like the industry is steering towards the dock of the independent gospel artists. Award shows are finally acknowledging these artists in greater numbers than they ever did in the past but is this happening just until the storm passes over and the major industry lions start to roar again?

I must admit that I am still not convinced that independent artists have arrived in the eyes of the major players that appear to have finally seen the light. What I do believe is that these artists are being used to fill the temporary vacancies left by the major artists who have suddenly disappeared from the scene, at least for the time being. And, when they return (when the US dollar is hot again), Indies will once again be shoved aside.

These are the questions that I'd like to ask, and hopefully someone will answer them:
1. How can you, a major force in the industry, honor or acknowledge artists who commercial radio is not even supporting?
2. Have these commercial listeners ever heard of these independent artists who are never played on commercial radio?
3. Even if one or two of these independent artists win your award, will the general public know who on God's green earth they are?
4. Will commercial radio be playing their music the day before or after they win, and will it really make a difference in influencing their airplay selections?

Although having said this, I have to admit that for the first time, I am overjoyed that I am not seeing the same 10 or 20 artists showing up on the ballot this year as in previous years. Now, if only we can get radio to wake up and recognize that there is more to music than the chosen few that they constantly play. This might be a perfect world after all. In these tough economic times when we all are tightening our belts, even the record labels are feeling the pinch. Ironically, even if record companies find the next big thing, they are too scared to spend the money less they sink deeper into financial oblivion.

Delroy Souden is CEO and founder of which provides information and features on Independent Christian artists. Souden is also a recording artist, songwriter and Internet radio personality. His website is a leading portal for Gospel information and news.
Share on Google Plus

About Airplay 360

AIRPLAY 360 is a monthly published digital magazine designed to inform, empower and motivate independent inspirational musical artists by offering a soundboard of information provided by artists, producers, label executives and other industry professionals.
    Blogger Comment
    Facebook Comment