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CD Prices

For those interested... I found this in the rec.music.collecting.cd FAQ: (I
assume all prices are American)

C005    Where does my money go when I buy a CD?

    The Washington Post ran a report on this subject on February 15, 1995.
    Based on information from the RIAA, Billboard Magazine, and elsewhere,
    they broke down the $11.99 street price of a typical hit new-release CD
    as follows:

        $ 2.00  Record-label profit + Executive salaries
        $ 1.40  New artist development
        $ 1.15  Distribution
        $ 1.10  Manufacturing (CD + artwork + jewel case)
        $  .85  "Other"
        $  .80  Performer royalties
        $  .65  Songwriter royalties
        $  .65  Advertising and promotion
        $  .35  Producer
        $  .30  Recording costs
        $  .25  Music videos
        $  .20  Managers and lawyers
        $  .10  Artist pensions
        $ 9.80  Wholesale cost to retailer
        $  .95  Miscellaneous retailer expenses
        $  .90  Store personnel salaries
        $  .75  Rent
        $12.40  Total cost to retailer
        $11.99  CD price at retail
        $  .41  Loss to retailer

    These figures make it clear that everyone but the label is getting a
    royal screwing.  Label profit, salaries, distribution (usually label-
    owned), manufacturing (label-owned again), and "other" (a.k.a. "hookers
    and cocaine for the label VPs") add up to $6.50/disc -- or more than half
    of a CD's retail price.  The people who actually make the music (the
    performers, songwriters, and producers) get less than a third of that.

[end quotation]

I do my part just by NOT BUYING CD's that cost over $20. It's not that hard
-- there's always a sale somewhere, if you're willing to wait. That's the
only way music companies are going to get the message -- if you don't buy!

Patrick Wilkins              Proud Survivor of Shad Valley Acadia 1994
Imprint Staff (UW's largest student newspaper!)
CKMS Radio Board and Staff (Beautiful Music for Ugly Children -- 
                      100% CanIndie, Sundays Midnite-Two AM 100.3 FM)