Every musician has to be a business person. If you don’t you’ll end up like all those musicians who were swindled by their managers.
You’re not just selling music. You’re selling an image. If you’re like the dude I know, John M., who sat in a basement and created music but had no social game, be ready for a hard life because you have to sell yourself. It’s so competitive.
You need CDs because you have to have something to hand out to prospecticve fans and music producers.
Nowadays you can go straight to itunes, amazon and youtube then work on promoting yourself. Put your music up. They sell it for about a 20% cut while you play live.
I noticed that last.fm seems to be a big promotional community for musicians.
The new money is playing live and selling paraphenalia at the live gig. People will download your music for free. That’s the way it works.
Most young people who want to get into music see the finished product but don't realize the hard work involved and many other people on