The Hollywood Reporter looked at the Tower Records demise from the point of view of independent labels, which have, in the past, relied heavily on the doomed chain. Some labels that the Reporter talked to say that Tower accounted for 5-6% of their gross business, and the overall tone of the story is on the worried side.
Which is completely understandable–Tower’s breadth will definitely not be matched by mall chains like FYE, so areas without independent music stores are probably even more resigned to a record-shopping experience that involves picking up the new Hinder record or buying from, say, Amazon or Insound. But a not-small part of us wonders if the view in this story isn’t a bit rose-colored; sure, Tower’s offerings in genres like classical are unparalleled by all but the most devoted specialty shops, but our few recent trips to its NYC-area locations have been frustrating, thanks to sorely lacking stock and $18.98 sticker prices. And those conditions have seemed even more pronounced during our visits to Tower’s suburban locations, making it hard not to think that other people searching for music in indie-store-starved areas haven’t just given up and gone online to buy–or “obtain”–their music anyway.
Tower Records demise leaves indie labels in lurch [Hollywood Reporter via Yahoo! News]