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Today, the Music Modernization Act has been officially signed into law by President Trump.  Kanye West among others witnessed the historic moment. Artists have been treated very unfairly for a long time. The Music Modernization Act will modernize copyright protection for recording artists and songwriters in the digital and streaming age. Simply, artists will get paid fair market value.

The bill revamps Section 115 of the U.S. Copyright Act. Their are the act’s three main pieces of legislation:The Music Modernization Act, which streamlines the music-licensing process to make it easier for rights holders to get paid when their music is streamed online. The Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, Service, & Important Contributions to Society (CLASSICS) Act for pre-1972 recordings. The Allocation for Music Producers (AMP) Act, which improves royalty payouts for producers and engineers from SoundExchange when their recordings are used on satellite and online radio.

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You’ll never get a second chance to make a first impression. Before you hit the share button on Instagram, make sure you’re visually literate. In fact, social critic Camille Paglia takes on the current state of Instagram in her latest article “The Rise of “Strangely Unsexy” Instagram Exhibitionism — And Why It Hurts Women”. Consequently, whether you’re are a boy or girl, artist or model, actor or actress, unflattering photos will kill your opportunities in seconds. Camille Paglia targets women more than men since Instagram is used by more than twice as many women as men.

Camille, a staunch feminist says this, “I have to say that an overwhelming number of today’s female-authored Instagrams seem stilted, forced and strangely unsexy. Visual illiteracy is spreading: It is sadly obvious that few young people have seen classic romantic films or studied the spectacular corpus of Hollywood publicity stills, with their gorgeous sensual allure.

Ironically, she praises Rihanna for her visual aesthetic. “The leading artist of Instagram eroticism remains Rihanna, who for several years uploaded one brilliant image after another, often via the intuitive camera of her best friend, Melissa Forde. Rihanna understands magic, mood and mystique — sex as a shimmering state of mind. But the bright and shiny surface of too many of today’s female-generated Instagrams conceals a bleak and regressive reality, with men in the driver’s seat for careless, hit-and-run hookups”. She even rips Ariana Grande for performing at Aretha Franklin’s funeral while wearing a sleeveless minidress. CONTINUE READING

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Hotels are now sticking their nose in the music business. You heard it right. In fact, the experiment is already on its way with the first artist signing. The Marriott owned W Hotel Records signed R&B singer-songwriter Amber Mark. The first release by Mark is a Kings Go Forth’s “High On Your Love”. The Hotel chain noted it will sign 4 artists in the coming year. Unlike Starbucks which launched a now defunct record label in 2007, the Marriott backed music label will provide the artist with recording space, video shoot locations, distribution, streaming services and even vinyl production. How will W Records attract artists? They’ll get exposure to the million members of Marriott’s global rewards programs says the Hotel Chain. We’ll follow the new signings and keep an eye on the impact.

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Madonna: The Rolling Stone Interview
“Feeling regret is really destructive. I’ve learned a lot from my marriage – mostly about myself.”

Here we learned everything about Madonna in the 1989 interview with Rolling Stone Magazine. We learned about her marriage, regrets, sleeping habits and run-ins with the police. It was transparent, at least we believe it was honest. It was a good read though, especially for fans of Madonna. Moreover, the biggest female celebrity in the world had a chance to show her human side talking about insecurities and fears.

Today, artists control the narrative. In many cases, the biggest artists won’t even engage in tell-all interviews. Taylor Swift won’t. Drake dropped out from giving any substantial interviews. Here is the difference. In 1989, celebrity journalism made a significant impact in the lives of artists. Consequently, social media replaced it.  Artists are in 100% control of the narrative. Instead of talking with their audience in an interview setting, they “talk-at” their audience by means of scheduled social media posts. Which means? The death of celebrity press.  CONTINUE READING

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In 2013, we talked about pop artist Bryce Vine who released an EP and performed shows with Karmin. He went on to perform a iHeartRadio live showcase with Z100 and appeared on Late Night With Seth Meyers. Of course this all happened because of his hit song Drew Barrymore which clocked over 80 million streams. At the end of the day, you never can predict a hit. Vine reveals that he never imagined the massive success, “No. I just never wrote songs expecting that. … No, you just try to write good songs and then hope people hear it and then when something explodes, it’s like then you play catch-up.”

Consequently, hits can take minutes to write or months. In Vine’s case, the song was written over many months. Honing on his musical schools, Vine attended Berklee College Of Music which led to a Glee Audition. Sending in an audition tape via Myspace, he made it to the top 12 before being eliminated. After the Glee spectacle is when he released an EP (which we featured), but circumstances changed a bit. “I went through heartbreak and cynicism and stress trying to be like a broke musician in LA like everyone else,” he says. “I hated telling people that I was an artist when I had nothing to show for it. It felt dumb to say, ‘Oh yeah, I’m an artist and I make music, and we should collab.’ I just kept working towards it but it was hard…when you get cynical it’s hard to get out of that.”

Indeed, a hit song can change everything. Zero to hero in a day. With that, he has a new album coming out on Sire Records and will embark on an October tour with MAX.

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