Entourage Music Supervisor Throws Out CDs On The Street


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Scott Vener, known more formally (or informally as it may be) as brokemogul, Instagrammed a photo last week stating:

“In case you were wondering what happens to all the CD’s I get sent. Thinking about leaving boxes of them on diff street corners if anyone is interested. #WillyWonka”

Ouch Vener. To think of how much blood, sweat and literal tears went into each song. Each note. Each lyric. Each piece of art. For you to then toss this out on the street with a grin and a shrug is disappointing for someone who claims to be a music “taste maker.”

These artists obviously respect your taste, your shows, your vibe enough to send you their CD. The least you could do is screen them with interns.

We don’t expect you to listen to every CD that passes by your desk. We realize that’s impossible. And we realize that it’s a slim chance that the CD we put in the mail (or SoundCloud link in an email) will ever get opened, but to blatantly show so much disregard for these artists is, frankly, insulting.

Show some respect.

So, every one of these CDs were sent by major labels? I doubt it. I send my music to music supervisors. As a DIYer. I’ve gotten over 30 placements.

No, I did not send you my CD, for the record. I know your taste. I subscribe to your Spotify playlist. I watch Entourage. But I don’t play your type of music. If I did, well, you wouldn’t get a CD. Not after this.

This disregard for the artists is disturbing. Where would you be if you didn’t have any music to place?

Artists are the only reason you have a job. And DIYers/indies are the only reason you’re able to fit all of the music you “discover” into your budget.

We get it. Most of the music you get sent ends up in the trash. I know this is not unique to your desk.

But how about showing some respect to the artists who you depend on. Maybe next time send an intern to Goodwill. Then at least these CDs might find a good home.

Photos are screenshots from @Brokemogul’s Instagram

64 Responses

  1. holly house

    the music business is officially dead. the few zombies that are still left working in it care even less about you than the loads of them that used to work in it when it was still alive. Just be glad there are still people like Dave Grohl. The glory days are gone forever.

    • Brian Wethers

      no, they music industry is dead for you because you don’t understand how it operates in the present day.

    • Jason

      You are obviously ignorant about music your Dave Grohl comment is proof of that.

  2. JTVDigital


    Please let me add something, based on my little experience here.

    Record labels (small or big), music supervisors, music companies’ executives (or employees) are constantly flooded by demands from various people desperately looking for someone to consider their songs (and this is totally understandable).

    Most artists (and, which is more worrying, label owners or publishers) still use CD as the media to pass on their music.

    This year I had a chance to attend MIDEM, as a publisher, and met various music supervisors, brands representatives…etc.
    During panels, most if not all people (artists, labels, publishers…) were trying to give their CDs to the supervisor, some even had a bunch of CDs to pass on…
    2 reactions: supervisor was politely accepting the CD(s), but you could see the expression on his face meaning ‘what the f^$! am I going to do with this?’; supervisor declining the CD and asking for links.

    Sad but true, a lot think like this ‘brokelogul’ above, at least I heard many times from them they want to discover music by themselves, through various means, like digging into Soundcloud, going on Spotify, a link sent to them by email, a friend of a friend sending a link…etc.

    They’d most likely click on a link than listen to a CD (first problem you have to find a CD player, and when you’re constantly on the move with a laptop that has no CD player like most modern mini-laptops…you just put the CD somewhere and forget about it).
    Also they’d not click or open an email from someone they do not know or haven’t met (so the importance of meeting these guys at events like Midem, Syncsummit, SXSW, World music expo…etc.).
    And never ever send any mp3 file as an attachement, we’re not in the 90s anymore, this type of email will go directly to the trash.

    There are so many ways other than CDs to send music to someone for consideration: Soundcloud, a link to your songs on Spotify, a download card, YouTube…etc.

    There is not a lack of interest from labels execs or supervisors, most of these persons are passionate about what they do and about music in general, really, it is just that they are busy and overwhelmed by demands, so they need an easy and quick way to listen to your songs.

    Jeremie Varengo – CEO
    JTV Digital

    • FarePlay

      Give it a rest, dude. Tired of your incessant trashing of physical media.

      Get a life. JVT D I G I T A L

      • FarePlay

        Sorry about the mistake. I guess you even named your company after yourself and your the CEO. Do you have any Spotify or Pandora tattoos?

        • JTVDigital

          Yes, everywhere 🙂
          Seems like you did not read my comment, or misunderstood my point.
          It was not bashing CD in general, just saying that as a media for submitting music to professionals, it’s not required anymore.
          Labels A&R people or supervisors do not want CDs anymore, just live with that.

      • GGG

        Say what you will about him but at least he operates in the right millennium….

        • FarePlay

          Well, there is a connection with my past that does play into my comments. I think I’ll have the same problem with cars that drive themselves and museums that are curated by computers. Whatever you may think or say the juice and excitement from my millennium came from the creativity of the individual and not the innovation of technology.

          That we spend so much time on the music business and not the music is a telling commentary as to the world we currently live in. These “discussion” become pointless, because the basic disagreement from my perspective is simply finding a way to support artists financially in the digital economy. And from all the research I read the sale of recorded music is the key component for survival.

          The more important discussion to be having at this moment in time is the manipulation by Google and other tech companies to maintain the terminally flawed DMCA provision in tact. If you seriously believe in streaming then you need to be focussing your attention on directing more of these listeners / downloaders to those services you believe in.

          Unfortunately, you will find these services passively sitting on the sideline, because they are dependent upon Google. Once again, if I can acknowledge that streaming is the future of music distribution, why can’t you accept, that for some their is value in owning physical copies of media?

          Why does the world just need to look your way and what’s wrong with diversity? Why force your reality on others. If you believe in streaming then support it. If I believe in physical media and supporting artists through paying for recorded music why challenge that?

          My life isn’t simply about convenience and price. Those things that provide value to my life are things I choose to pay for. You should be grateful that my generation is still buying CDs and helping artists survive in our own small way.

          Why destroy something that has a positive impact on artists, just to prove a point? Yeah, I’ve been around for a while, so what.

          • GGG

            Your generation, and every generation since cavemen invented the wheel, has invented technology that made other technology obsolete. This is not a new phenomenon. Or I’m assuming you typed this on a typewriter or hand wrote it with an ink well, mailed it to someone via USPS or courier, who then typed it into his computer? Since I can’t imagine you’d use this devil machine yourself.

            People don’t have to spend enormous amounts of time on the business, that’s why people like me exist. I get the same percent someone did back in your heyday for management. Some of the artists I have/do work with enjoy doing social media themselves, others I do the vast majority of their online interaction. Unless you literally have no friends, any aspiring musician can find someone to help out. The allure of rock and roll is as strong as ever. Proof is in the never-ending stream of shitty bands out today. The sale of recorded music was the financial lifeblood of a musician for about 50 years. Music has been around just a tad longer.

            You won’t get much argument from me on the Google front. My issue has always been trying to get people to understand streaming is not going anywhere. That’s almost every argument I have on here haha. I’m not pro-streaming because I think it pays great now, I’m pro streaming because the longer the industry is split into two factions slinging mostly bullshit data and speculation back and forth at each other, the longer we’ll be taken advantage of by outsiders. In-fighting is a recipe for disaster. Genghis Khan knew this a thousand years ago.

            And I’ve never denied people’s love of physical product. Every time vinyl comes up I pretty much start any argument I make saying I think it will continue to gain ground for quite a while. But the people that buy vinyl are still listening to music online, or digital files. You can’t take vinyl with you, people can’t afford more than a few $15-20 albums a year, etc.

            It’s not MY way. I didn’t invent any of the technology I or anyone uses. I’m not forcing reality; it’s reality! If you want to sit at home on a typewriter, fine, more power to you. But the rest of the world is still going to be using email, and we’re not going to slow down to wait for you. I’ve never told anyone not to buy music. I make more money if people buy music. I have no reason to rally against it. But there’s only so much you can do, and so much effort worth putting into reaching one person out of the herd of millions.

            Last, cut the sanctimonious crap. It serves nothing. You act like you were all living off the land, walking to school in the snow uphill both ways and riding horseback for days to get provisions in town. Please, you had TV and planes and microwaves and telephones. The difference between technology now and technology in your day is not any different from tech in your day compared to 1900.

            Also, show me statistics your generation is buying more physical product. I don’t necessarily doubt you, but I’d like to see actual numbers.

          • GGG

            Yes, your point of “I’m an old man afraid of change” was well validated by my post, I agree.

  3. Jonny G

    I figured he would throw them out of his sunroof while driving down the 101 towards Malibu but maybe that too much trouble.

  4. Jason Didner

    You might even donate the CD’s to a hospital where people desperately need help passing the time, especially in a pain management unit. This could have been a positive PR move instead of a snarkfest.

    • FarePlay

      Than you Jason, that is one of the best comments I’ve read in a very long time.

  5. ben

    Scott Vener is right. He did not ask for the mass of cds via mail.

  6. Adam

    Anyone getting sentimental is being a dummy. Every A&R guy used to toss these in the trash. The only difference is that this guy was dumb enough to be self-promoting on twitter while he did it. Bad taste? Yes. Worth thinking about? No. Everyone knows sending a CD will only get it thrown out… You learn this in music school, if you even go to music school.

  7. hippydog

    dumb move to post this on social media..
    but unsolicited demos are most likely going to be chucked out.

    as to taking them to goodwill there are issues with that also (some of them legal reasons)

  8. rikki

    Hey WAIT……I love cd’s……..when i buy them I want the FULL FILE……

    I hate what you’ve done, offer us a compress excuse of the file for 99 cents…..that’s ripping us off…I will always pay for the FULL wav file..and steal the cheap mp3 one.

    Some of us have lots of $$$ invested in our stereo yes i still have a few thousand records….Quality still matters to some of us.

    • FarePlay

      Why shouldn’t we be able to purchase music in the format we choose. As long as people buy them, why not produce them?

      • GGG

        You can buy 99.9% of releases on CD still. A large, and growing, chunk on vinyl, too.

        If you go through Bandcamp and some other sites, you can get lossless files.

        Unless you’re looking for laserdiscs, I’m not sure what you’re point is here. All that stuff still exists. It will be diminishing quantities available but that’s how the world works. If artists are selling 500K albums on avg, no reason to manufacture 2M.

    • FarePlay

      No there’s a sideways intro to another atrocity. Troll alert.

  9. austinjonesband

    Thanks for the post Ari, we little guys won’t give up! I can’t believe these guys actually throw them away, what if there is actually something amazing in that pile? At least give them away to someone who would listen, I would listen.

    • GGG

      I don’t know if my other post will go up or if it messed up, but to maybe repeat myself, I used to work for a very large media company and I alone used to get about 50 CDs a day. Every. Single. Day. Often multiple copies. And the vast majority of these would be unsolicited. I’d peruse every once in a while and find some good stuff, I guarantee you I passed over something amazing just by sheer volume, but there was also so, so much shit. You have no idea how much TERRIBLE music is out there until you’re in a position of “gate keeper.” And I’m not talking just stuff that oh, GGG doesn’t like this type of music. No, I’m talking shit that is actually objectively horrible. Like a person not singing in tune. Or terrible production. Or just really dumb songwriting. The whole nine yards.

      You say you would listen, and you might for about a week. Then, I can tell you with 100% certainty, that’d you be tossing most of that, too.

        • Mike

          Im with both of you. There’s not enough time in a year to go thru everything. And there’s too much sub-par stuff that takes the air out of your sails, even for the greenest-eager- beaver -freshman-college-radio-station DJ. So while you mentioned “I guarantee I’ve passed over something amazing just by sheer volume”, it’s clear you’re saying it just isn’t worth going thru a pile of CDs to find that one gem.

          But let me ask you this: If you could point a magic wand at that pile of CDs and turn them all into digital album cover icons on a webpage, click each one for the stream, then click KEEP or THROW IN GARBAGE, would you use a system like that? Do you think music supervisors would be ready of that type of system?

          If you have any additional thoughts on this I’d be interested to hear them.


          Mike C.

          • GGG

            Well, we sort of have that already…it’s my iTunes or playlists on Spotify or playlists on YouTube, etc. I get what you’re saying and I’ve thought of that, too, and while there is certainly a theoretical use for something like that, if it’s open to the public, or even just open to labels, you’d still get a massive, unlistenable amounts of music uploaded so it’d just be the digital version of the same shit show.

            As for the quote you pulled out, yea, I mean, I’m not going to say I was lucky enough to just happen to pick out all the good ones, so I’m sure I missed great albums or songs. And I can also guarantee that if I could go back in time I probably passed over bands that are big now, and probably even ones I’m a fan of. But most peoples’ jobs isn’t purely to listen to new music. And even if it is, psychologically, I don’t think you can even really give a fair listen after so many hours/albums/artists, however you want to measure it. You just get new music fatigue and want some familiarity. So shit just gets backed up then someone you know well pitches you new shit and it cuts in line and this all repeats over and over again.

            And then, as someone else alluded to, if you listen to shitty music too long, you rarely get some second wind of “ok, I’m going to find the next big band soon, I can feel it!” For every 1 time you think that, there’s 100 times you think “jesus, everyone is fucking terrible. why did they waste their money recording this horrible music. brb gonna go kill myself.” Obviously that’s an exaggeration but it is hard to take over and over.

          • JTVDigital

            Same as above: Spotify, YouTube, Soundcloud, Musicxray…etc.

  10. TheSixFinger

    Or maybe he’s sick of having space being taken up by an outdated format. Just a thought.

  11. GGG

    The only thing that makes this guy any different from what countless other people do/have done is that he instagrammed it. A few years ago I used to work at a very large media company and we would probably get about 50 albums a day, often multiple copies. Every. Single. Day. I personally didn’t throw them out, I just perused through them a couple times a week, took what I wanted and kept the rest in those bins. So I dunno what actually happened to the ones that sat there too long, but I think we can all be pretty certain they are in the dump right now.

  12. Tony Gottlieb

    It’s OK, wouldn’t have mattered. Never watched his show anyway.

  13. djv

    Show some respect, indeed! Someone needs to take away this guy’s job… And his half-assed attempt to apologise for being an ingrate, litterbug and a d-bag.

  14. djv

    Show some respect, indeed. Someone needs to take away this guy’s job. And his half-assed attempt to apologise for being an ingrate, litterbug and a d-bag.

  15. John Smith

    This guy (Vener) is VERY up his own ass. Take a quick scroll through his tweets and you can tell.

  16. Promoter

    First off – the music INDUSTRY is not dead. It has grown in ways most folks can’t even begin to imagine. The INDUSTRY of music is mind blowing.

    Go to any radio station in America and see if this same phenomena doesn’t take place.

    Truth is we just can’t keep up anymore. It’s just too much product. There is not enough time in the day, week, month or year to even open all the packages, let alone listen. It just isn’t possible.

    I’m sorry this happened. It was a direct result of the MP3 Revolution. It is the result of all the wishes of every DIY artist in America – to see the “industry” overwhelmed. Well, you got your wish. This is what it looks like.

  17. DUDE

    I thought it was common knowledge that unsolicited tapes usually get tossed, dunno what everyones so worked up about

  18. Jaded Industry Dude

    I’ve thrown away about the same amount of CDs, whether listened-to or not. Clutter can clutter the mind. It was all taking up too much space. It wasn’t mean-spirited, sometimes it just gets overwhelming.

    • The Dude

      The difference is, you didn’t instagram-it for everyone to see, then add a douchey hashtag, whether people follow you closely or not

  19. Thaddeus

    It appears to me a record label is nothing more than a general “payday loan” agency.. I have yet to see the value of signing with a label? Get this, there providing you funds to sell and promote your product and in return they retain your product (eg.your music) for life or until they recoup what had been previously given to you and they have the nerve to base there work ethics and remarks with ” there taking the chance and the risk” never mind the fact that an artist is taking a risk as we’ll..if the label fails to finance promote or provide assistance, the artist will get dropped or locked in with the label until the record company wakes up one morning and decide to release you.. What a joke! Until someone comes along with a better system, I just don’t see the value of signing with one?

  20. David Rosen

    I’d guess that 90% of the people that bought my most recent album on CD (not download and don’t just stream it) that aren’t my mom, are all musicians too. Musicians are the only people who even think of CDs anymore. And old people who can’t work tha compudas…

  21. Anonymous

    There is waaaaay to much music being produced right now. It’s literally impossible for any A&R of even a no-name indie record to listen to even 0.1% of the music that they get sent.

    • mdti

      What is uncool is not that they dispose the cd or don’t listen to them (which i understand).
      What is showking is that the CD are available to unknown people on the street, people who were not meant to listen to the CD.

      They could shred them or burn or whatever, because most of them were sent with an intent of confidentiality from the receiver.

      For the rest, well, it’s normal that they destroy or get rid of the records anyways. why make them available to anonymous pople on the street is baffling to me. like an old-school version of torrent pirated music.

  22. wallow-T

    In June 2007, the New York Times ran an anecdotal story titled “Ballad of the Spurned CD”, about a trend where New York residents were dumping their CDs in boxes on streetcorners for others to pick through. These were CDs whose former owners had chosen and paid for them; and yet they were being tossed away. (Google will find the story for you.)

    That Times story was seven years ago; how much worse must it be in 2014 for someone who is being inundated with unsolicited CDs because he might be able to place music on a TV show?

    • FarePlay

      Yes wallo, the same thing happened with vinyl. Luckily I still have mine.

  23. Promoter

    I filtered my cd collection recently and threw out over 2000 cds, some unlistened to. I still have 2000 left, and that’s too many.

    • Rusty Hodge

      Putting them on the street for others to take *is* recycling/reuse in most big cities. Different than putting them in the trash.

  24. Minneapolis Musician

    After you have listened to a few hundred CDs from people making tracks in their spare bedroom “studio” on Fruity Loops, etc. you probably know how 99% of these work.

    Dragging and dropping loops and then dragging and dropping effects, and then autotuning their vocals, and dropping on a few more effects. Hey, you can do a few of these every morning and a couple in the afternoon. Maybe some feature sincere strumming on guitar with a breathy and heartfelt vocal about something the feels quite profound to the young person who is experiencing it for the first time. But very little truly new stuff that took innovative musical talent.

    (I get it. I used to host an Open Mic night at a major folk venue. )

    There is just an ocean of “good enough” pop tracks out there today, thanks to computer audio workstations and software…. as I always say.

    And I think that picture of the pile of CDs illustrates this idea in a very powerful way.

    — Glenn

    • Paul Resnikoff

      I’m trying to remember which artist or producer released a smash hit based on a simple GarageBand loop. I think it was Polow da Don for an Usher track – yeah, it was ‘Love In This Club’

  25. ww

    Sucks, but not quite as bad as finding dozens of copies of your new album being sold weeks ahead of street date at Amoeba in Hollywood, with the “licensing promo only” stickers still on ’em.

    • Rusty Hodge

      Well, at least Amoeba pays virtually nothing for CDs these days, not even worth the gas to drag them down there.

      As Tyler Shields says, stop sending DJs/Music Directors/Supervisors/Industry people CDs. We don’t have room to store them all. For us, it just slows the review process down… someone has to rip the CD and make sure all the metadata is correct. There is just too much stuff coming in these days, and physical is a nightmare. Not to mention a waste of resources to produce and send (and store or dispose of).

      Send the digital file, and say, let us know if you want a CD. If we do we’ll let you know. (Occasionally, I do, but only very occasionally these days.)

      The biggest problem here is that there are all these “record promoters” out there who make lots of money by sending out all these CDs to untargeted postal mailing lists of industry people. They artist pays a lot for this, the promoter makes money, and the DJ/supervisor/etc gets stuck with a lot of physical things they don’t have room for.

      And make sure you send out links to high bitrate MP3s, and make sure all the metadata is correct, and put some contact info like your URL and email address in the MP3 Info comment field. I can’t tell you how many times I get a file called “Track 1 mastered version” and nothing else, and even when I like the track have no idea of who the artist is.

  26. Tyler Shields

    This should be a good lesson for people who cannot adopt to the trends of the industry/supervision world. STOP SENDING THEM CDs. It’s a waste of your time and money. If you feel different, keep sending them, but don’t be shocked when stuff like this is posted on social media. My computer doesn’t even have a CD player! Get with the times. Find out what blogs people like Scott Vener are checking out and get your music there. That is how you will get to his ear. I LITERALLY could not do anything with a CD if you sent it, except use it as a frisbee. Seriously though, learn how to spend your money right.

  27. SKthree

    I walked away from the music business in 1997 at the height of the game. Why? The industry has and always will be run by a few people who actually care about art, a few with decent business sense and a cadre of fools who are more focused on being cooler than the next guy to look beyond their own mirror. The real tragedy here is that creativity and art continues to wither while an industry chases the next promotional high while completely missing the long term solution.

    I now invite you to attack my thoughts rather than use the time to think about a true consumer value proposition that allows art to flourish.

  28. string art

    Being an old analog type it sounds like I should send demos on vinyl. Sounds like this might be interesting enough to at least get played….once…lol.