Archive for the 'Rock’n’Roll' Category

An Economic Look at Celebrity Suicides

Wednesday, November 29th, 2006 by econ-network

This is a gem of an item, found through the Improbable Research blog. It’s a study of the social benefits of celebrity suicide by Samuel Cameron (an economist at the University of Bradford) and his colleagues. You may need to be at an educational institution to get the full report, but here is the abstract:

“This Commentary suggests that it is possible, from an economic perspective, that any individual artist/celebrity suicide may be of net benefit to society. Sales of the artist’s products and associated merchandise may increase after the suicide, and people, including those who were not even born at the time of the suicide, may derive value from its iconic reification, not to mention the higher value they derive from some private goods. A case study of Kurt Cobain is given to illustrate this phenomenon.”

Read more: “Artists’ Suicides as a Public Good” Archives of Suicide Research, Volume 9, Number 4, October-December 2005, pp. 389-396(8)


Monday, July 24th, 2006 by econ-network

The way in which people make money from music is changing.

One symptom of this is that it’s getting much more expensive to see a big-name live music act, and the reason turns out to be a knock-on effect from the advent of downloadable music. Live shows used to be a way to promote CD sales, but now that fewer people get their music from CD it is tours that have to make a profit.

The pricing of live shows and the balance of power in recording contracts are topics in what Princeton University economists Marie Connolly and Alan Krueger call “Rockonomics”: the economics of the pop music industry.

Read more: “Winners take all in rockonomics”, BBC News web site, 20 April 2006.
Reference: Connolly, Marie and Alan B. Krueger. “Rockonomics: The Economics of Popular Music,” Working Paper, April 2005