Image waiting for your favorite artist to release an album and the date keeps getting pushed back. I’m not sure how you would feel but personally, I’ll feel cheated, robbed and taken advantage of. Maybe I’m being a little dramatic, but you get the picture. But then what’s worse is when the album finally comes out and you’re not even pleased. You’ve waited this long for this… Perhaps the anxiety sat in by now and you’re just over it.
More and more artists come out with release album dates but then continue to push them back. Why promise a release date if you know you can’t deliver? And then once the album finally drops, will the album really be worth the wait?
With the constant decline in album sales, artists struggle to break at least gold their first week; especially, if we’re discussing the big hitters when they debut. With the advent of technology, free downloads can be a contributing reason but overall people aren’t just buying albums. Still, I wouldn’t attribute all low sales to illegal downloads.
Some artists are known for pushing their albums back or even worse, shelving their projects over and over. Now it seems like we’re playing a game–the “when will the album drop?” game. Artists relate the message to their fans about a release date, then a few weeks later it changes. These tentative dates change for mysterious reasons and leave fans wondering what’s really going on.
Artists are rushing to push out albums without considering when would be the best time-frame. Just because a few tracks on your album are done or you have a few left over demos and tracks from the last album, doesn’t mean you’re ready to drop an album. Much consideration should be done by artists before announcing a release date. They must take in to account factors like season, competition and allow a huge amount of marketing.
And no, marketing does not mean changing your release date every other week. Bad call. If that’s part of the genius strategic plan, someone needs to rethink.
It’s not enough to just release a radio-friendly track that can bumped in the car or club, then come out with an album expecting people to purchase. Marketing is key when it comes to releasing an album because consumers want to hear some type of buzz around the artists. You have to make tons of appearances, interviews and perhaps mix in a minor scandal will help with marketing too. The demand has to be high. We can always get the supply online, honestly.
Record companies are becoming more creative when it comes to artists releasing albums and generating much-needed attention. Building up anticipation seems to be the formula used to entice audiences. Do I think it’s a good tactic? Perhaps. Is it done too much? Yes. Artists should be very strategic when it comes to album release dates. Don’t rush a release; plan. Nobody wants to wait forever for an album to drop. I don’t want to play that game.
For all it’s worth if you’re not ready just release a mixtape. That seems to be popular these days.
— Drew-Shane Daniels
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Drew-Shane Daniels is a Philadelphia based writer maneuvering through life and graduate school. Hailing from Dallas, his Southern charm and East Coast hustler mentality fuels his ability to tackle stimulating lifestyle and cultural topics. He’s the creative genius found on his personal blog www.heardhimsay.com. His work has been featured on Clutch Magazine, Black College Wire and BET.com. You can also follow him on Twitter @drewshane.