Article by The Western Courier
In April 2016, legendary musician Prince died of a fentanyl overdose. He left behind some 39 studio albums including over 100 singles. Rolling Stone Magazine, in 2004, named Prince as the 27th greatest artist on its “100 Greatest Artists” list. That same year, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He’s sold over 100 million records worldwide, joining the ranks Kanye West, The Beatles, Lady Gaga and many more as one of the best-selling artists of all time. And, until Feb. 15 of this year, nearly all his music wasn’t available on popular music streaming services like Spotify, Apple Music or even YouTube.
For the unaware — when Spotify was gaining popularity and acceptance by the music industry in 2011 — Prince continually railed against the concept of his music being available online for free. It wasn’t until July 2015, though, that Prince officially asked his record publisher to remove his music catalog.
In a series of social media posts in 2015, Prince quoted a Daily Beast article explaining his reasoning. “Essentially, streaming has offered labels the ability to pay themselves twice while reducing what is owed to artists from pennies on the dollar to fractions of pennies on the dollar,” Teo Bugbee wrote for The Daily Beast.
Bugbee, Prince and analytics aaree. According to The Verge, an American technology news and media network owned by Vox Media, Spotify gives artists between $0.006 and $0.0084 per average stream. Of course, there are irregularities in which an artist would be paid more based on other factors like country of origin and country streaming.
For artists like Drake and Justin Bieber, who enjoy popularity and billions of streams, received some serious earnings in 2016. Drake’s “One Dance,” one of the most popular songs of 2016, which was streamed over 1 billion times, earned him over $6 million.
Artists who enjoy mainstream popularity can sleep soundly knowing their work is being appreciated and that they are being compensated. But what about the artists who rarely make it past state or local recognition?
Mistah Wilson: What’s good wit’ it! Thanks for coming thru for this exclusive interview with ThaWilsonBlock Magazine. How ya’ been?
Heartless: I’ve been good trying to stay focused. Thank you guys for having me!
So our audience can gain a clear understanding of you as an artist, could you give us a quick background on yourself?
Heartless: I’ve been doing music seriously since 2009. I had a song called “Sit Back” feat G.Breeze on music choice. In 2010 I decided to switch my music to profanity free, after my pops listened to my underground album, and said it was too hardcore with all the profanity and I might not reach as many people, as well as music is a business and if you want to change it you have to be better. So I listened to him and for spiritual reasons I decided to grow my skills and see if I could keep my street life that I lived in my music without cursing. In 2012 I signed a record deal with Tate Music Group and released” Keys To Da Game” Feat G Breeze with the hit single “Come Correct” that was in rotation on WAMO 100 (iTunes link https://itun.es/us/-Y9pF) and the YouTube video of it https://youtu.be/b6NJdzpXQ4g
Let’s talk music real quick! Your song “We Made It” is EPIC! We really enjoyed it. What message are you trying to send with this track?
Heartless: When I wrote “We Made It” I was thinking about my bro, G Breeze, who’s doing fed time right now I made that song for him and everyone else that’s in his situation or on the outside like myself stating simply that the law can’t catch us all and if one of us make it we all make it I’m out here working hard to get this Short Life Profanity Free Street Music nationwide that was our plan from the beginning.
Tell us about some current and upcoming projects you’ve been working on..
Heartless: At this moment I’m just doing singles and marketing them to radio the three singles I’m releasing are “We Made It” Featuring D’voice, “Only Her”, and “City Life” Featuring Tia Moore. After that I plan on working on my second album “Get To Know Me” and releasing a mixtape before that comes out and working on Tia Moore’s album.
Who are some key influences in your life that motivated you to be the artist you are today?
Heartless: Since I was young I’ve had a passion for music, but the most important person is my Pops, Guy Wesley, He has watched me grow since the beginning, he still plays people the first songs I ever made. I would’ve never thought my older music would still hold any accountability, because I’ve grown as a artist so much, but when I was visiting him recently and he was playing it for people that were saying “wow that’s different we need that type of music ” and they listened and appreciated my latest music just as much, saying “stay focused your going to go somewhere, who’s managing you and when is the album dropping”. And everyone that listened to any of my music has the same reaction, “no profanity in it but it still has that gritty feel”. I like that because that let’s me know I’m accomplishing what I wanted in creating music with no profanity.
How do you develop new song concepts, hooks, and lyrics?
Heartless: I was writing so much, notebooks on top of notebooks filled with lyrics but no beats to match it, you can look at it as I was perfecting my craft.. After a while it started to feel like I was wasting my words, because I couldn’t find a beat that would bring it together. So I looked at it from another angle and started searching for producers. I can’t just write to any beat, I have to feel it, I’m making music based on my life. So I have my producer play different beats, and ill spit a few bars to see if it catches, if I don’t feel it in 10-15 sec I’ll tell them go to the next one, but when I catch that beat that makes me bob my head, its like the words attach automatically, that’s how it
happened with “We Made It” and “Only Her”.
Are you currently an independent artist or are you rockin’ wit’ management?
Heartless: I’m a independent artist I release music under Short Life Entertainment. I would like to have a manager, someone that can actually help me more than what I’m doing for myself right now. I’m doing everything and I pay for everything studio time, marketing releases etc everything.
What do you plan on accomplishing through your music?
Heartless: To grow my Indie Label and change the music scenery, I’ve worked to hard to master my style with profanity free lyrics and I like where I’m at.
Where can people connect with you online?
Heartless: Social media sites they can reach me quick on twitter however all my sites are below
Yo, Heartless! Good lookin’ on comin’ thru for this exclusive interview with ThaWilsonBlock Magazine! if you have any shout outs, let’s hear em…
Heartless: I’d like to say what up to Antonie (Twan Beatmaker) Reed, my homie and engineer Diezel of Diezel productions, The Real G.Breeze, Dale Burch, Guy Wesley, and to my kids I love each of yall ….Lendell, Demonne, Quan, Dameir, Dalezsa, Daquan, Tyrae.
Because we love to find good content on the internet, we were fortunate enough to discover rare photos of historic moments around the world. We find these photos strikingly interesting as they capture spontaneous moments you won’t see much anywhere else. Enjoy.
|Fritz, a television celebrity bulldog, is shaved by a Californian barber. April, 1961.|
|Construction of the Golden Gate Bridge in 1937.|
|The Statue of Liberty surrounded by scaffolding as workers complete the final stages in Paris. Circa 1885.|
|Dinosaurs are transported on the Hudson River to the 1964 World’s Fair.|
|Two childhood friends unexpectedly reunite on opposite sides of a demonstration in 1972.|
|Crowds rush through the castle on Disneyland’s opening day in 1955.|
|Construction of Hoover Dam in 1934.|
|OJ Simpson carries the Olympic Torch in 1984.|
|Washington-Hoover Airport which was demolished in 1941. This is where the Pentagon stands today.|
|The earliest known aerial photograph, taken from a balloon over Paris in 1858.|
As the industrial age comes to a close and year 2000 babies become adults, a new generation of thinkers arise from our communities. Since the late 1880’s, Altadena, Pasadena, and South Pasadena have developed their own sense of character and esteemed heritage.
We’ve recently asked the Pasadena community if they’d be open to such a change. And a lot of more than half of them said “No”. After the initial response we received, we believe that Altadenans, Pasadenans, and South Pasadenans more or less agree on each city keeping their own identity. But, the young minds of today challenge that tradition with a simple question. Should Altadena & South Pasadena be Incorporated into one Pasadena?
Cast your vote below and feel free to explain why you feel it would or would not be a good idea. At this time, there is no commissioned initiative to change these cities. This is strictly for discussion purposes and to encourage community engagement.