Billy Corgan: ‘Music industry is run by feckless idiots who tell artists they’re not worth anything’

The Smashing Pumpkins singer speaks about Tidal and the music business in a new TV interview

Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan has criticised the music industry in a new TV interview.

Corgan – whose band released their 10th album ‘Monuments To An Elegy’ last year, with another record entitled ‘Day For Night’ expected for 2015 – appeared on CNBC News, telling the hosts that the music industry is run by “feckless idiots”.

Corgan added: “The tech world is just blowing music out of the water, but music and artists remain incredibly valuable to launching things. Hence tech companies keep cycling back to music artists. Music artists need to figure out their true value in a free market, which they have been slow to do because you have that old model of telling artists they are not worth anything, that they are disposable – similar to the things you’ve seen in the sports leagues, and you are going to see that evolution happen in the music business.”

The singer also predicted that the old system of how the music industry works will soon change. He continued: “You’re gonna see a complete disintegration of the business model. And a reforming. The problem is because artists are generally manipulated, it’s an old business model, you’re told ‘You have no value, you have no value’. They’re slow on the uptake on how much value they have in this market place. Because when it comes to athletes and rock stars, those are two people who can sell a level of independence that works with marketers that no one else can sell… But music’s been slow on that because the old music business continues to control its diminishing share of the market.”

The topic changed to that of Tidal, Jay Z’s new music streaming platform, with Corgan split on the idea. “Although I celebrate the idea of him creating his own model it leaves a lot of people out,” he said. “At some point you have to have winners and losers because that’s the way it works. To try and sell it as an altruistic thing is disingenuous because it’s not. He is taking his slice of the pie, which he has every right to do – he is a powerful man and he works with powerful people. But by the way, I’m a powerful artist and I don’t recall getting a phone call from him. But I get phone calls from other people and I have to make similar decisions. To sell it as altruistic – I don’t buy it.”

Watch the full TV interview here.

Smashing Pumpkins will head on a co-headline tour with Marilyn Manson during the summer.

Corgan recently dedicated the upcoming tour to US military veterans.