THE growth in illegal music downloading is forcing desperate record company executives to buy less glamorous narcotics, the Daily Mash has learned.
Industry insiders say dozens of executives have downgraded from cocaine soaked in champagne or premium vodka, to 'street highs' such as crack, glue and air freshener.
A record company source said: "Every time you download something for nothing a record company boss has to adjust his lifestyle. Offices throughout Soho are piled high with cheap bottles of glue and bags of crisps."
The source added: "Just last week we received word that a record company executive had to cook for himself. We can only give thanks to God he had someone to do the dishes.
"These people are used to having cocaine brought to them on one of the platinum discs for Tubular Bells, carried by the attractive girl from Steps or one of the early Sugababes.
"It's not as if they're musicians who can afford several houses with staff. Many of these guys have just two or three houses, often looked after by a part-time housekeeper who answers back.
"This time next year they'll be on family tax credits and clipping coupons out of the paper."
The industry is to launch a £10m campaign to highlight the growing crisis. A cinema advert will feature an executive enduring a cheap haircut, having a pizza delivered and ironing his own shirts to the strains of Drive by The Cars.