Album art for Curren$y’s Pilot Talk 3.

Curren$y’s Pilot Talk 3 — The Devaluation of Art

Curren$y caught heat for releasing an album bundled with a shirt, book, and USB drive loaded with extras for $100.

The devaluation of art is going to end up suppressing creativity. Creative types aren’t going to stop being creative as a direct result of money (or lack of it), but when an artist has to work a job, two jobs, to make ends meet, the artist will lose time to be creative. The artist will lose the connection to the muse because of the rigors of making ends meet, meeting family commitments, and so on.

If you appreciate art, any of it, you absolutely have to stop complaining about cost and find a way to support. I see people paying $30 for a shirt all the time. People pay $20 for a book, $10 for an album. You’re already at $60 there. The bonus materials might be arguably worth $40, so saying $100 for a bundle package is not a stretch for fans able and willing to support. Yet complaining on Twitter how Curren$y is charging for his music after releasing no fewer than two free albums in the past is just plain spiteful.

I recognize that using a triple-digit purchase as my soapbox is not the best example, but it is one of way too many to speak of. You think nothing of paying $5 for a beer at a show, nothing of your $4 coffee, and you complain of your $15 movie ticket but you still take yourself and a date to see the latest flick.

When illegal downloading broke out on college campuses with T1 connections and unlimited use of that broadband highway, it felt fine to download Metallica’s catalog because, at $15 a pop, you were getting taken for a ride. The Super-A-list artists aren’t hurt, their money comes in a different form. The rest of the world is not getting paid in this current model of streaming, just like they weren’t getting paid when CDs were the norm. Napster toppled it all but only hurt the journeymen, not the superstars.

Directly support the artists that you connect with. Don’t ask for free tickets because you want to “support.” Emotional support is great, but financial support helps the artist realize the dream.

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