What Is A 360 Deal?
Ok ok ..my twitter really been off the hook about 360 deals. Seems like many people, including artist don’t know the definition of one…so let me give you the dictionary definition and then I’ll pretty much break it down as simple as I can for yall. Here we go…
A 360 Deal or a Multiple Rights Deal is a business deal between an artist and a record label. The label agrees to provide financial support for the artist, including direct advances as well as funds for marketing, promotion and touring, as an investment to the artist’s lucrative potential. The artist then agrees to give the company a percentage of ALL earnings, including sales of recorded music, live performances, merchandise and any other income.
Now before you go..huh? let me break it down to the uncut raw. Now..usually in a traditonal record deal the record label would make money off the sales of an artist album ONLY. Artist rarely made money off album sales because majoity of the time, they never recouped from the money the label spent on them in the first place! But it was all good, the artist didnt care cause they make their money from shows, tours, endorsement deals, tv/movie deals, book deals, merchandise, etc. things the record label had no rights too. Being that record sales are so horrible right now, labels are starving! Nobody is buying albums like they use to and now its hurting the labels pockets. But while this is happening, Artist are living the life still making a killing at the shows, endorsement deals, tv/movie deals etc…you name it. I mean I know some artist who can’t even move 50,000 records first week, but can get 20 – 40k a show!(I know for a fact!)
Think about it for a sec. An artist doing 3 to 4 shows a week for a month at those rates! How about a year? Do the math!!!! An artist could even put some t shirts up for sale at shows or on their website and still make some good enough money to feed the entourage alone..lol Labels are seeing this all and sayin whooahh wooahh hold up!! We made you famous, we promoted you, we put your single out and helped make you hot…so we want in on that! We gon need a cut of every outside deal you make! Yep! With a 360 deal labels get a cut off ALL earnings! Basically, they feel you would have never had the opportunity to do all those other deals and make that money if it wasn’t for their promo and marketing help in the first place.. so now they want a percent of (say it with me)……ALL earnings. lol…this kind of reminds me of the famous Frank White from King of New York quote. “From now on, nothing goes down unless I’m involved. No blackjack no dope deals, no nothing. A nickel bag gets sold in the park, I want in. You guys got fat while everybody starved on the street. Now it’s my turn.” lol….classic! ok ok… back to the topic…
Now where was I …oh yeah..Now this 360 deal which is becoming the mandatory with all new record deals, is of course causing a lot of controversy. Obviously artist don’t like it because now.. a label pretty much not only ownes you but they are in your pocket for everything…even if you sell a coffee mug with your name on it, they get a cut! Its got so bad that labels are trying to force artist who already have a traditional deal to change there deal to a 360 deal or….face getting benched….is what I call it. Labels will say hey..you don’t want to sign this 360 deal then we wont promote you are market you… and we wont put your album out..you will just sit there. We wont even clear you to be a feature on other artist albums. We’ll wait you out tell you so irelevant you will want to do the deal to get back relevant. Basically it’s a f*k you, sit there and rot then attitude. It’s a pretty harsh situation casue they are messing with people lives…and how artist feed their family. This can make any artist such as Lupe Fiasco to take to the street and organize petitions and press conferences speaking against the label.
With these 360 deals, record labels no longer want to be just record labels, they now want to become a multi service company that includes management, show booking, merchandising, promotion, marketing and anything else they can muster up to get a cut.
In all fairness, after reading all this now…..think about it… If you spent millions of dollars promoting an artist to make them big and they used that fame to make other big deals which cut you out…wouldn’t you feel …I don’t know a ways? On the flip side as an Artist you’ve been eating like this for years and now record labels want to flip the script on you because they messed up years ago when they first introduced record deals…that’s their f*k up not the artist. By the way, all those early Mo Town years wasn’t labels raping artist making them sign off their publishing to them, isn’t this just a clear case of …karma?, chickens coming home to roost? Whatever you view is on these 360 Deals, there are here to stay. So you can either sell yourself and get down with the rape or go indie (which is the in thing right now, as along as you have your own budget) and get hot yourself only using them for a distribution deal. It all comes down to your current situation and how bad or desperate you are or aren’t. The choice is yours!