Thursday, 26 March 2015

"If you like my new album, then check out my old one": The influential role of new releases on motivating purchases of old ones

And here's another lost gem.

In this important article published in the Journal of Political Economy (you can download a free version here) authors Hendricks and Sorensen explain how new music releases, and specifically those which are a hit, motivate sales of albums in an artists' back catalogue.

Sounds fairly obvious, but don't forget that research has an important role to play in defining basic assumptions about the world and the use of a substantial dataset of sales data from hundreds of artists over years and years goes a long way in setting this one in stone.

And if that's not enough, consider how in the days after U2 force-fed i-Tunes users with their new album, 26 of their older releases shot up the charts (though not to an extent particularly worth shouting about).

It's a tough read given the methodology used (you will know what I mean when you open the PDF) but the lengthy introduction to the paper is very well put together and easy to understand.

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Hendricks, K. and Sorensen, A. (2009). Information and the Skewness of Music Sales. Journal of Political Economy, 117(2), 324-369.

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Recommended journals #2: Music Psychology

In the second of this occasional series, I aim to bring the exciting world of music psychology to your attention.

Distinct from other branches of psychology, music psychology uncovers the powerful role music plays in our lives by exploring a broad range of topics including the increasing role of music in our everyday lives, thanks to our dear friend technology. To this end, much research explores the role of music on health and wellbeing.

A good dig around will also yield interesting insights into human cognition by considering emotion, language, memory, etc.

The three journals below are a good starting point if you're interested in doing some research of your own.

Psychology of Music
Musicae Scientiae

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