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IPROTelA MINS 14:7….t11110,-,G=re PRIME RIP STEAK LOPSTER CRAP elican’s had Printers Stationers Mailers Typesetters High Speed Web Offset Publication Press Counseling Designing Copy Writing Editing Trade Computer Sales and Services Complete Computer Data Processing Services FUTU11111/1 512/442-7836 1714 South Congress P.O. Box 3485 Austin, Texas 78764 Austin, Corpus Christi, Victoria, Brownsville, Temple, McAllen, Port Aransas, Tucson lL DINERS CLUB College Station, San Antonio, Lake Tahoe Music business.. . from page 21 expression between performer and public. Narrowing ownership of the electronic media, with the power it bestows on management, invites misuse of the public airwaves \(vide the payola scanto the pointit gives unfair competitive advantage to national labels, those most able to promote themselves. Things are much the same at the retail level, where the basic truth is as coarse as this: an album isn’t going to sell if it’s not on the store shelf. While it is more or less left to national chains and big-time rack-jobbers to decide what appears at eye level, retail “competition” is restricted to the few outlets with enough market muscle to extract price breaks Songwriters’ seminar, Austin, 1975: left to right, Doug Sahm, BMI v.p. Frances Preston, Mike Tolleson, drummer Paul English, BMI p.r. man Russ Sanjek, Willie Nelson and wife Connie. from manufacturers. The big chains don’t want to mess with the albums of obscure artists whose unheralded talents won’t draw customers in from the sidewalk. Even if a local or regional label wins retailer acceptance, it probably will not rate even a token share of display space unless it can afford to offer promotional discounts. A chain store can thus expect to get an album from a distributor for at least 23 cents less than the hometown ‘record shop pays, which helps to explain why, in the music business, the rich get richer. It comes down to this: new performers \(as well as innovators and traditionalists languishing outside the mainstream of ord companies, local record storesand ultimately all of us who get our music from records and tapesare going to find ourselves financially “had” and artistically straitjacketed by the erosion of competition that characterizes the music industry. Mike Tolleson is an Austin a ttorney specializing in copyright and entertainment law. 30 APRIL 14, 1978