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Monday, October 28, 2013

1,000 bands


1,000 bands

Brian Eno possibly said that, "the first Velvet Underground record may have only sold 1,000 copies, but every person who bought it started a band." [*]
It certainly wasn't a bestselling album, but without a doubt, it changed things.
The scarcity mindset pushes us to corner the market, to be the only one selling what we sell.
The abundance alternative, though, is to understand that many of us sell ideas, not widgets, and that ideas are best when used, and the more they get used, the more ideas they spawn.
Kevin Kelly has inspired 10,000 companies, and Shepard Fairey, a generation of artists.
How many bands will you inspire today?
* Two footnotes here. The first is that like most revolutionary ideas that start a ruckus, the first album was poorly reviewed. It wasn't the obvious next thing, the idea that's easy to celebrate. And second, Eno's quote has been amended over time: "I was talking to Lou Reed the other day and he said that the first Velvet Underground record sold 30,000 copies in the first five years. The sales have picked up in the past few years, but I mean, that record was such an important record for so many people. I think everyone who bought one of those 30,000 copies started a band!"