This part of the book examines in detail the two core record company functions: the acquisition of masters and the marketing of those masters (Figure 9.1). This chapter explores the ways a label can acquire masters, primarily focusing on the label’s efforts in finding recording artists, and signing them to contractual obligations to record masters. Chapter 10 explores producers and the production process. Chapters 11 and 12 analyze the ways labels market their recorded products using the “four Ps” approach to focus on product lines, pricing, promotion, and place of sale (including distribution). Although most labels do not sell their recordings directly to consumers, retail, the final phase of marketing, is critical to the industry. The “place” where consumers access and purchase recordings has undergone dramatic changes since the heyday of the record store chains in the mid-1990s. Mass merchants and the Internet drove major record retail chains into bankruptcy. The Internet and mobile networks are full of streaming and download sites.