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This is the explanation given on the website for Radiohead's 2007 album In Rainbows with regards to payment information - the buyer chooses how much to pay for the album. The payment option ranges from 0-100£. Radiohead is not currently under a label and have not announced intentions of distributing the album through record shops.

Ian Brown completely supports the move by the band, and declares, "Anything that can break the music industry up, I'm supporting it."

Johnny Marr of the Stone Roses agrees, "It's not hiding behind any corporate nonsense, it's just saying 'this is the way it is, let's get on with it.'Everyone knows you can get your music for free, so let's see if you really want to show the band your appreciation."

But according to Johnny Greenwood, "People are making a big thing about it being against the industry or trying to change things for people but it’s really not what motivated us to do it. It’s more about feeling like it was right for us and feeling bored of what we were doing before ... It’s just interesting to make people pause for even a few seconds and think about what music is worth now. I thought it was an interesting thing to ask people to do and compare it to whatever else in their lives they value or don’t value."

Look, it's Radiohead, so you know, you FUCKING KNOW, that it's worth it.

Personally, I'm all about fuck the industry, but I also really, really like Radiohead. They are apparently not the first to get their music out this way, but I think it's pretty cool, it sounds like they're giving a little bit of the finger to commercialism, whether they intend to or not, this is how it is, let's get on with it, and I like the awareness of the current state of music with regards to distribution and file-sharing. This is an interesting response.

Is this the beginning of a new way of getting the music out? Will we see a future in which more good artists make it out into the open without getting fucked over by their producers?

I won't be cliche about this.

Sources:

http://www.greenplastic.com/ (i really like this website)

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/7034320.stm

http://inrainbows.com

shaogo re It's Up To You. No Really, It's Up To You.: As a member of the music business "establishment" I was very taken by this writeup, and by Radiohead's innovative concept. In theory, I believe it's an exquisite public relations move. In practice, I wonder what the financial results will be. I don't know the demographics of Radiohead's fan base; perhaps *they* will indeed come up with a fair payment, enabling the band to continue with this policy. However, (color me cynical) I don't have a great deal of faith in the inherent honesty of people. I meet too many people who want a "free lunch," and when I pose the question in the other direction (e.g., okay, you want a free drink? Work for *me* for free for 1/2 hour -- you think the price's too expensive? Go to McDonald's to sate your hunger, not to an expensive sushi restaurant)

shaogo says re It's Up To You. No Really, It's Up To You.: I know what you mean by "fuck the industry." It's the entertainment industry's equivalent of bureaucracy. If we do away with the middlemen, you leave their greedy asses without a job, the bands still work and everyone gets their music. Cool. Would it work? Yes. Would it be fair? Why certainly, to the buyers who paid little or nothing for albums; and patently unfair to those who placed a realistic value on a piece of art (ain't that what music is, whether live or recorded) that they can't create themselves and that they derive enjoyment from.

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