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View Full Version : Article: The Return of Garth Brooks Has Fallen Well Short



GBJR77
05-14-2015, 03:58 PM
http://countryperspective.com/2015/05/14/the-hodgepodge-the-return-of-garth-brooks-has-fallen-well-short-of-expectations/

I agree and disagree with some of this one. Even the stuff I agree with though, I look at from a different angle. For example - "People Loving People" wasn't a horrible song. I love the song....but it had to grow on me to get there. I don't think the current state of radio lets a song do that anymore. I personally don't know anyone who listens to radio, other than the guys I know doing construction work with a radio on the jobsite. Everyone else I know has a cd player or digital music player in their car, at their desk, on their phone, etc. "People Loving People" and "Mom" are not the type of songs that are going to hit the target audience if the majority of people listening to radio are those like the guys I know. Back in the 90's, when radio was still a viable outlet, they would've been given time to breathe but not in this age. That's where I agree that the 'old school' way of thinking has failed Garth. I don't agree it was due to 'bad' songs.

I also don't agree that he NEEDS to be on iTunes. I wish he would, because I think it would help - and again it's where the majority of people I know find out about new music. But he doesn't NEED it. I think he needs better marketing to keep up with the digital era though. I recall seeing exactly ONE advertisement, at the end of last year, for the album. This is Garth Brooks coming back - it needs to be bigger. "Blame It All On My Roots" got a bigger marketing push, with the tv special, than "Man Against The Machine" has had.

I don't agree he needs to sell singles either. I know I wouldn't buy them - unless they were reminiscent of the old physical singles that had 'bonus' cuts. If I hear a song I like, I am more likely to buy a whole album to see what else is there from the artist. I think sticking to that model is fine - but - I agree that there needs to be a youtube or something presence (other than Ghosttunes, that nobody seems to know about STILL) where they can 'sample' some of the music to get their interests up.

That's my two cents anyway.

Lowland_Kid
05-14-2015, 04:46 PM
If Garth wants to be as big as he once was, I think the writer of the article is right.

wimpy77
05-14-2015, 05:21 PM
If Garth wants to be as big as he once was, I think the writer of the article is right.

Like Lowland said. If he wants to be a factor like he was in the 90's (which I don't think he really cares) he's going to have the play the new game. The old ways don't work anymore.

Garthmedic
05-15-2015, 12:20 AM
I tend to agree. Garth is gonna stick to his guns regardless.

Skywise
05-15-2015, 01:16 AM
hmm- have to totally read the article (darn that teaching schoolwork getting in the way! ) but I'll say this much (w/o reading it).. Garth's made a big mistake doing things as he has/is doing them currently. If he wants to be influential and a factor- he'll have to change.. the times have changed. Garth's playing the part of a crotchety old man set in his ways and not wanting to change. but I'm sure theres' more to the article than that point :)

Mr_Sevens
05-15-2015, 01:45 AM
I can't help but notice all of these blogs that talk about Garth's "failed" comeback totally ignore the gargantuan world tour he's on now. Oh well.

YouSoundBitter
05-15-2015, 03:37 AM
And in today's market, MAM did very good, as dwe have already talked about.

Emerald Isle
05-15-2015, 12:41 PM
It's true that IF Garth does care about being as big today as he was in the 90s, then the article makes some good points.

The iTunes thing is a must. For 2-3 weeks after the GMA performance of Mom, "Garth Brooks Mom" was in the top five searches on iTunes. That means a TON of people were looking for the song, and couldn't find it. I'd bet no more than 5% of those ended up finding it on GhostTunes, and I'd bet no more than 15% of those few who did find it actually bought it once they figured out they couldn't get it without buying the whole album. (Another kicker is that once you actually find Garth's stuff on GT, you can't even listen to a 30 second sample of any of the songs except for the preview thingy he did for MAM, and even then it's got him talking over it so much you can't even really hear the songs. In other words, you wanna hear it? Hand over your $13 first. Even if Garth is 1000% committed to GT for life, that's just a poor strategy if you've been away for over a decade).

Next, I agree he absolutely needs a YouTube presence. Even if it's just putting his music videos or his old concert videos up, that'd be better than nothing. Right now, you can find dozens of videos of Garth falling on stage, but hardly any "official music". That's a problem in today's music scene. I am actually good friends with the Piano Guys, and they have made a TON of money just off their You-Tube videos, so it IS possible for songwriters to get paid via You-Tube.

I also agree that putting all of his marketing eggs into the radio basket has been a mistake. King George and Reba are among the few artists who have been able to maintain consistent radio airplay despite their ages, but they didn't retire for a decade. Plus, radio is dying. I haven't listened to the radio in ages. I'm not a huge fan of the Luke Bryan's of the world, and that's who is dominating radio these days. Although I love Garth, one thing is certain, I would NEVER endure hours and hours of Luke Bryan and commercials just to hear a Garth song I already own, and I doubt I'm alone. Garth needs to find a new friend other than radio. Still, as has been mentioned, the album still did well by today's standards despite the lack of advertisements, even if it performed below expectations. Also, we STILL don't have the ghosttunes and gb.com numbers, so it's impossible to say how many it's really sold.

It's also true that most of these articles tend to ignore the success of the tour, but even that has been difficult for many folks with his "announce only one city at a time" way of doing it.

And NONE of this addresses the stop-go-stop-go announcements to make more announcements debacle that plagued the whole comeback between July and November. First it was I'm coming back and digital will be up in a week. Then digital didn't show up for another 3 months. Then MAM was a double album with 30 songs, then it wasn't and we got 14, with the other 16 to be released in 2015. Then those 16 are now maybe gone too because Garth is liking his own pen more now days.

No doubt, the past year has been GREAT for long-time fans, but it's also been incredibly frustrating and difficult too. If you make it that hard on the life-long fans, you're certainly not going to win many new ones.

All that said, there have been some great moments too where he has done A LOT of things right. The show is generally really good, and adding shows upon shows to make sure everyone gets tickets, even if that means playing to a half-empty house once in a while has been awesome. The Justin Timberlake cameos and collaborations have been good. GMA performance of Mom was great, as was the "go and kick cancer's a**" moment.

It's been a year of ups and downs, for sure! But really, none of this really matters if it's true that Garth doesn't care about matching the 90's anymore. If that's the case, then all the "downs" and "Garth should do this" and "Garth should do that" suggestions and opinions are really nothing more than moot points, since competing in today's market would not be his ultimate goal anyway. In that case, he can carry right on doing it all his way. Either way, us die-hards will still be along for the ride, I'm sure.

Charles
05-15-2015, 03:14 PM
I read the article and understand where the writer was coming from...one thing though that I can't agree with is Mom being one of the worst songs on the album.

If Garth had his music on Itunes, and if that song was available as single to buy...it would have easily been a top ten hit. I know there's a lot of ifs there, but that's just my opinion. I don't agree with the formula radio uses, but it is what it is.

Honestly, I kind of wish Garth went with Nash Icon...Reba's new single has really been strong, Garth could have done the same I think.

Nonetheless, I work with a lot of 20-23 year olds at work..and they love Garth's new album..

Lowland_Kid
05-15-2015, 05:12 PM
That is so true. Maybe he is just having a great time on the road. Doing what he loves and not trying to bring back the old days.



It's been a year of ups and downs, for sure! But really, none of this really matters if it's true that Garth doesn't care about matching the 90's anymore. If that's the case, then all the "downs" and "Garth should do this" and "Garth should do that" suggestions and opinions are really nothing more than moot points, since competing in today's market would not be his ultimate goal anyway. In that case, he can carry right on doing it all his way. Either way, us die-hards will still be along for the ride, I'm sure.

wimpy77
05-15-2015, 07:33 PM
I read the article and understand where the writer was coming from...one thing though that I can't agree with is Mom being one of the worst songs on the album.

If Garth had his music on Itunes, and if that song was available as single to buy...it would have easily been a top ten hit. I know there's a lot of ifs there, but that's just my opinion. I don't agree with the formula radio uses, but it is what it is.

Honestly, I kind of wish Garth went with Nash Icon...Reba's new single has really been strong, Garth could have done the same I think.

Nonetheless, I work with a lot of 20-23 year olds at work..and they love Garth's new album..

That song didn't even get out of the 30's.

Mr_Sevens
05-15-2015, 09:57 PM
That song didn't even get out of the 30's.

Reba's "Gone Like That" is currently at #23 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart and has been on the chart for 16 weeks.

"People Loving People" peaked at #25 on the same chart and dropped off completely after week 1.

BLL
05-15-2015, 09:58 PM
I made a post earlier and it seems to have gone to the nether lands of the cyber world. Garth had planned on taping Ireland's shows for a television release just before the album drop. That was scuttled by Ireland's somewhat mystifying license rules. I suss if the telly special had aired radio would not be able to ignore the clamour for new music. I think the ticket sales tell the story. Garth and Trisha are older, 'true' country artists, which I'm not hearing on the iHeart stations. I hope the pendulum swings back. Until it does I'll listen to my music and in my car to the classic country, or plug in my phone which holds all my cds. I'm not sure Garth cares about radio as long as the people want to see him play; though hopefully he'll get another crack at more new music as I though MAM is a strong album.

wimpy77
05-15-2015, 10:03 PM
Reba's "Gone Like That" is currently at #23 on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart and has been on the chart for 16 weeks.

"People Loving People" peaked at #25 on the same chart and dropped off completely after week 1.

I usually don't pay attention to Billboard and mostly watch Mediabase, so I stand corrected. Thanks for the info.

Brett Dale
05-16-2015, 03:36 AM
Agree a lot with what he has said. Although thought it was disingenuous that he failed to mention how successful his tour has been.

Brett Dale
05-16-2015, 03:48 AM
If Garth wants to be as big as he once was, I think the writer of the article is right.

Thats the problem, he did an interview, not sure if it wass with Ellen or Robin, but he actually said his goal WAS to be not only the number one artist again
in country, but in all genres.

Lowland_Kid
05-16-2015, 04:10 AM
In that case Garth should really change his strategy. And the writer of the article is right.

Lowland_Kid
05-16-2015, 04:13 AM
What annoys me most is his stance on YouTube. I live in Switzerland, where country music is not a big deal (although there is a scene and there are some country festivals). Whenever I tell people of my love for Garth's music, they'll go: "I'll check him out on YT". Right... and then I have to tell them that they won't find much. Mainly covers. It is such a pain, because it would be a great way for people to discover him!

Charles
05-16-2015, 11:18 AM
Yeah the YouTube thing is annoying..

I believe Garth called their business plan "the devil"

I Respect Garth's want to protect his music and the songwriters, but I do wish he'd atleast have an official YouTube channel with all of his videos.

garthcop
05-16-2015, 05:59 PM
I think this is an honest article that express a lot of things we have talked about on the forum. But has already been mentioned, it's not taking into account the touring and the still record number of sell outs in each city he goes to. I think it's a little too soon to say his comeback is a failure. As long as he is selling out concerts like he is, it will never be a failure. It gives him a platform to still be relevant and with talent like his, he is bound to come out with some more big hits that the industry won't be able to ignore. He's just getting his feet wet again. That's all.

YouSoundBitter
05-17-2015, 01:05 AM
True. He rereleased his first single cuz of the lack of radio the first time around. I think its a matter of time before radio and GB meet up again. It might be on the next album though.

jdl535
05-17-2015, 03:10 AM
Tourwise Garth is doing great. Radio and album sells, Garth isn't even close to what he once was. He is stuck on the 90's way of doing things and that doesn't work today. He needs to do the YouTube. Needs to join iTunes and allow me to buy the single songs and be on Spotify. I don't agree that "All American Kid" is "too country". I think it should be the next single. It would be big.

author
05-29-2015, 06:40 AM
I think so long as Garth is happy he'll keep doing what the industry calls mistakes. When an artist has had the sales success he has, he doesn't really need any more and can be self-indulgent. I agree that he said he wanted it, but he had to say that didn't he? I also agree that the two singles are the worst two songs on the album. I believe that 'Cold Like That' would have even made it here in the UK where country music gets almost no respect at all. I think what Garth is doing now is for his old fan base, and if he really wanted record sales he would have picked songs for the next generation. I think people put too much weight on his shoulders if they expected him to rejuvenate country music all by himself, overnight.