Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

On The Record signs €1 million record deal

We can exclusively reveal this morning that On The Record has signed a €1 million record deal with Sony Music. The deal, which will cover recordings of OTR reading new and old blog posts very fast over a variety of …

Tue, Jul 27, 2010, 10:05

   

We can exclusively reveal this morning that On The Record has signed a €1 million record deal with Sony Music. The deal, which will cover recordings of OTR reading new and old blog posts very fast over a variety of house, techno, funk, indie and Radiohead soundtracks, will see OTR becoming the first millionaire blogger in the world. “I’m chuffed and over the moon and feel 110 per cent about this”, said OTR from the hot-tub on his new private plane (bought for a song from NAMA). Other news sources, please copy (as usual)….

Sadly, such musings remain a figment of our fertile imagination, but we’re indebted to the Beeb (via a link from Record of the Day) for reminding us of the very strange beast that is the one million quid record deal.

Every X Factor winner or finalist has signed one of these beasts. Sure, didn’t Jedward get two of ‘em – one from Sony and, then when Sony came to their senses and dropped the duo, one from Universal. Every Irish Next Big Thing back in the 1980s signed one, before everyone came to their senses and the band went back to signing on instead. We even know of at least one Irish band who signed a million quid deal which was actually destined for another act their label’s A&R department were after but ended up going to the Irish act by mistake. Hell, there are probably even OTR readers who have had the one million quid contract carrot dangled before them.

One million quid record deals are both the unicorns of the entertainment business (the band don’t actually get handed a million quid there and then) and handy shorthand for a band striking the big time. As legal consultant Ann Harrison points out in Liam Allen’s piece, “it’s such a convenient number and it hasn’t changed for years. It hasn’t gone up to £1.5m or £2m and it hasn’t gone down to a half million – everyone always signs a £1m record deal.”

However, changes in how the business roll means such deals are becoming few and far between. These days, it’s priests, nuns and members of the Women’s Institute rather than new, raw bands who are offered one million quid deals. Even the days of acts like REM or Robbie Williams making out like galatico bandits at contract renewal time seem over as the record industry comes to its senses and realises there’s no cash in the bank for such flamboyant, over-the-top, deal-making. But you can still expect the “one million quid record deal” chestnut to be brandished now and again when a PR needs to spin a hack a tale.