George Strait Bucks “Performance Tax”

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straitCountry and western superstar George Strait joined numerous other voices from the talent end of the music business in speaking up about the importance of radio. As the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) continues to pursue legislation demanding an unprecedented performance tax on songs played over the air, more musicians are stepping to the fore in support of free radio over their own recording labels.

Free airplay has been responsible for establishing the careers of musicians in every genre conceivable. Its impact on the careers of artists ranging from The Rolling Stones to Outkast is huge, and competition for play on the airwaves immense.

Radio industry trade publication, Radio Online, carries this report about an interview country music star George Strait conducted with Radio & Records magazine:

“You can’t take being played on the radio for granted,” Strait said. “There are only so many spots and many great singers out there wanting one. It’s a jungle out there.”

Commenting on Strait’s statement, NAB Executive Vice President Dennis Wharton said, “George Strait is the latest in a long line of recording artists who can’t thank radio enough for helping sell records. The straight truth is this: the record labels’ proposed performance tax would cause economic harm to local radio stations across America, resulting in less music and fewer artists being exposed to listeners.”

Much as we are seeing with the royalty fees being enacted on webcasting, many smaller stations will have to curtail or cease operation due to the added expense of a performance tax.

It’s important for musicians who have experienced the power of radio as a career builder to speak out. It’s also important for all of you reading this to support the Local Radio Freedom Act which opposes the RIAA’s proposed new fees.

Photo courtesy of cliff1066, used under its Creative Commons license

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2 Responses to “George Strait Bucks “Performance Tax””

  1. Ronald L. Parsons Says:

    I have a feeling this is another tax just to dig the American People out of a deficit that the Washington Politicians have put us in. I I ran my farming operation like the bureaucrats have run the government, I would not have a deficit, I would have been sold out by the bankers along time ago. Why can’t the politicians open their eyes and see the problem and fix it. We need jobs to pay taxes and purchase goods from suppliers who buy it from the farmers and then process it. The building blocks for success start at the ground level, the farm and if they do not stay in business all else will fail.

  2. counselort Says:

    Great article and I share the beliefs of my fellow commenter. I was disturbed recently when I met a man who explained to me that the U.S. Government paid him $65K per year to NOT FARM his land. When the dynamics were explained to me, I was horrified. Why do we have world hunger? It is all about money! No regard for human life, the bottom line is money. I don’t want to wander too far from the topic but we ARE in trouble. Now a Performance Royalty (Tax) come on now!

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