Pop singer laments the dying album trade, claiming she earns all of her profits from radio and music video play
La Roux’s Elly Jackson claims she has “never made any money from” selling music. Instead of seeing the proceeds from album sales, she says she earns all her profits from radio and music video play.
“I spent two years on Trouble in Paradise and I most likely won’t make any money out of it,” Jackson recently told Digital Spy. “The only money I will make is from radio play. All the money I’ve had up until now is from radio. I think people find this really, really, really hard to believe. It’s not a lie, it’s just the way it is.”
Despite these claims, elsewhere in the interview, she mentions that she “bought [a] house from” the video to 2009’s Bulletproof. But she maintains that she has “never made any money from record sales”, despite selling “nearly eight million records, if you count all the singles”. “There’s something not right about that,” the singer said.
“We spent a lot of money on this record, kind of knowing we wouldn’t make it back personally,” she went on. “The label will make it back.” Given that Trouble in Paradise has received relatively little radio play, Jackson is hoping to improve her financial prospects by refining her live show and booking bigger stages. “We don’t break even,” she said. “Until you start getting to much larger venues, if you’ve got a five-piece band like I have, you find it very difficult to break even.”
“I don’t think we should all be like the 80s and have 20 cars, be millionaires and be like George Michael or anything like that,” Jackson continued, “but there’s a happy medium that ... isn’t being met.” In previous interviews, La Roux’s has suggested that her label, Polydor, has not met up to her expectations. The 26-year-old recently stated that she’s “not really happy with [Polydor’s] overall performance”. “It’s really frustrating when your label kind of expects certain things to happen, and then they don’t happen, and then they just stop bothering,” she said. “It seems to me that maybe they wanted number ones and if they don’t get them, they’re not really bothered.”
La Roux’s self-titled debut, from 2009, debuted at No 2 on the UK album chart and sold more than 60,000 copies in its first week. By contrast, Trouble in Paradise sold less than 9,000, landing at No 6. It was made without Jackson’s prior collaborator, Ben Langmaid, who co-wrote almost all of La Roux’s first songs. Langmaid has blamed Trouble in Paradise co-producer Ian Sherwin for the schism, calling him an “idiot” and a “poacher”. “[Ian] couldn’t write a nursery rhyme,” Landmaid tweeted.
La Roux’s next UK tour begins in Glasgow on 5 November.
This article was written by Sean Michaels, for theguardian.com on Monday 22nd September 2014 07.25 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010