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The superstar songwriter Diane Warren ends chapter with EMI: Diane Warren who had long lasting 20 years history with EMI has inked a deal with Bandier’s Sony/ATV Music Publishing to exclusively administer her catalog on a worldwide basis. Warren has written over 100 Billboard top-10 hits for artists including Aerosmith, Elton John, Tina Turner, Barbra Streisand, Eric Clapton, Mariah Carey and Cher.

Rise fast, fall hard: Kanye dropped -76% to 225k this week. Fiddy fell -79% to 149k. Reba Mcentire opened up with 300k thanks to an Oprah appearence. Goth band HIM new record Venus Doom sold 38k. Eddie vedder’s solo record (39k). Colbie Caillat went GOLD while Nickelback will hit 6 million soon. Linkin Park is approaching 2 million.

The Rolling Stones lands in the latest edition of Guinness World Records: Although the German critics mocked their live show, it did not stop the tour from becoming the most successful. “A Bigger Bang Tour” took $437 million dollars to give them a new record. Madonna also made the annual compendium as the most successful female artist — her 60-date “Confessions” tour grossed almost $200 million. That meant she earned more than $3 million per concert. (Reuters)


Warner Music Group Stock Hits Rock Bottom: Warner Music Group shares hit new lows yesterday closing at $9.74. A year ago the stock traded at $27. WMG is the most visible recipient of growing investor doubts about the recorded music industry.

Buzz Show: North Carolina indie act Nathan Asher & The Infantry will be performing at Pianos in NYC Thursday – September 27th. A slew of small and big labels will be attending.

San Diego hardcore Christian act As I Lay Dying will surpass 100k sales in October.

Dashboard Confessional’s new record, The Shade of Poison Trees, can now be streamed in its entirety.

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KOAR attended the Blaqk Audio show at Hammerstein Ballroom show in NYC. Watch this short clip of a Blaqk Audio live performance in Montreal – this amateur vid caught the intensity.

How many frontmen can go from hardcore to a rock infused techno band?

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      MORE Kings of A&R Picks’s greatly hyped music store launched today: Read hear for an in- depth first impression.

Will Album art still have a place in digital marketplace? Fans want digital album art but labels and digital music services are slow making it available because they lack capabilities. Also, the diminishing profit from digital downloads does not motivate the labels to provide fans with extra art due to cost. (Reuters)

‘What’s the Future of the Music Industry’? Check out this post from the writers New York Times’. Steve Gottlieb, president of TVT Records and George Drakoulias, music producer/A&R at American Recordings look at the past, present and future of the music industry….(via coolfer)

Check out the band Fiction Plane. I was listening to G-Rock (106.3) and I thought I heard a new Sting track. My goodness, it sounds like Sting from the Police. In fact, Sting’s son Joe Sumner was on the mic. Dad passed down the vocal genes and the hook-ups as Fiction Plane is the opening act on the current Police Tour.

Giant advertisements set for world’s busiest airport runways: Imagine a photo of Nickelback the size of three football pitches seen by plane passengers coming in to land. Although it would require a bucket-load of marketing dollars, it now remains a possibility.

Upcoming big releases include: Bruce Springsteen, Dashboard Confessional, Matchbox Twenty, Alicia Keys, Jay-Z, Garth Brooks, Britney Spears, Celine Dion, and Mariah Carey.

Vivendi blasts iTunes Contract: Vivendi chief executive Jean-Bernard Levy pointed to a lopsided iTunes contract, and suggested revamped terms. “The split between Apple and producers is indecent,” Levy said. “Our contracts give too good a share to Apple.” Apple gives roughly 70-cents to majors per 99-cent download, a figure that also includes publishing royalties. “We should have a differentiated price system,” Levy said. (DMN)


Authorities have seized ‘art porn’ owned by Elton John: The image, which featured two young girls one of whom was sitting down with her legs wide apart has been seized by police from a gallery on suspicion it may have breached child pornography laws. Please tell us you’re not shocked…

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Starbucks Giving Away Music For Free…
On Oct. 2, Starbucks customers at more than 10,000 Starbucks coffee shops will be able to pick up free cards that can be redeemed for a specific song at Apple’s iTunes music service. Two of the four major record companies — Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group — chose not to participate. Some executives are leery of large-scale giveaways, arguing that they diminish customers’ perception of the value of their music. I don’t want a FREE Beck song – I want a FREE Latte. (NYT)

A drummer who spent four years in the Ramones, filed a federal lawsuit claiming he is owed nearly $1 million in royalties on songs sold over the Internet.

Madonna who is expected to walk away from Warner Music is close to signing
a £50million contract with her tour promoters Live Nation – to cover
her concert AND her record releases.

People Choose Rock: Modern Rock stations had the highest percentage of listeners heading to stations’ Web sites, with males making up 61.6 percent of that format’s listeners. (FMQB)

I think emo’s a pile of shit…. Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance

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Check out Mute Math performing the track Typical completely backwards, a concept the Louisiana quartet conceived, rehearsed and executed in three weeks. Mute Math are exciting to watch as they encompass and interpret the music as it sounds and how it should feel. Mute Math is a multi dimensional artist that KOAR described in a previous post.

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According to a survey conducted by American Media Services 63% of American adults listen to the radio every day. The number among 25-34 adults is even stronger: 79 percent tune in to radio at least once a day.

Seventy-two percent of Americans say they’re listening to the radio as much or more now than they did five years ago, and they’re still tuning in in the car: 74 percent of Americans turn on the radio when they get in the car, including 72 percent of 18-24 adults and 80 percent of 25-34s.

Satellite radio subscriptions steady at about 11 percent — but 89 percent of respondents said they are unlikely to subscribe to satellite radio in the next 12 months.

“Many analysts seem to be enthralled with the technology of satellite radio, but the buying public isn’t,” said AMS President/CEO Edward F. Seeger. “Satellite radio continues to fill only a small niche in the marketplace.”

AMS also asked what would prompt respondents to listen to radio more. The top answer: More music and fewer commercials. (via Idolator)

The Bottom Line – We can’t verify the accuracy of the study. Some kids claim they only use the iPod and rarely listen to the radio except for XM satellite radio. Maybe more adults are tuning in on talk radio. Unfortunately, it’s overly fragmented to get a proper understanding, but radio has no doubt lost influence. Who really holds influence today?

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Warner Music Group chairman and CEO Edgar Bronfman remains optimistic by eyeing industry growth potential. He sees a future for digital rights management and physical product in the music industry, although maybe not in their present forms.

Bronfman also said they will now invest in new and mid-tier artists with the expectation that it will share in all the artists’ revenue streams that could include touring and merchandising through helping to build other revenue streams, whether that be hosting and selling off of an artist’s Web site. He also said major music labels did not not create a website to offer music because the profit margins are not attractive.

TV turns to internet and will offer Free Downloads…
NBC Universal, acknowledging that viewers are increasingly moving away from traditional television viewing, announced plans for a service that will make popular NBC programs available to download free to computers and other devices.


It appears that California based band Thriving Ivory has signed to Wind Up Records. This band has put in their duties. Check them out in KOAR’s New Music and Recommended Listening Column.

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When Kanye West opened up with 957k while 50 Cent topped 691k, Island Def Jam Music Group Chairman Antonio “L.A.” Reid said the sales are proof that music fans will still buy albums as long as the quality is good.

“Market conditions certainly have changed in the last few years, but the
decay we are seeing has more to do with the lack of quality in music,” he said.

The Bottom Line:

L.A. Reid is one of the few executives in the music business other
than Rick Rubin who acknowledges or at least speaks out that the decay in the music business is due to quality, in what KOAR calls the CREATIVE DROUGHT. Unfortunately, many other executives have fell to the idea that the lack of sales is mainly due to technology.

Many execs and music labels spend their long days in meetings thinking about selling music. This is a BAD OMEN. We can be rest assured with this mentality that the quality of music will continue to suffer. Instead execs in music labels need to focus on CREATING quality music with potential artists. Many execs will argue, it’s not that easy – ok fine, lets continue..

The Music business consists of ART and COMMERCE.

There is a lot of mediocrity out there that consumers will bypass. We have so many more releases, more genres, more artists, more competition. To many releases clogging up the arteries. Music labels do not set up a record for a year, its all about the first week. Music Labels cannot focus on 10 releases for the full year. When companies work more than three records they are overwhelmed.

You would think that with more competition we would have better music. The long tail is wrong, its just the opposite. With more competition we have less heroes because it gets watered down.

We know there is no such thing as artist development, instead we have priorities now.

Music Labels want FACTS. If there is not a story, a label won’t work a record. If you are that type of artist that is radio driven and you have lukewarm radio, you will get lukewarm attention – unless you are a multi-dimensional band. A multi dimensional band does not rely on radio for success – radio is icing on the cake. A multi-dimensional act has great songs, great players, great live performance, and has a true unique vision. Multi-dimensional artists are AFI, Slipknot, and Foo Fighters in the rock world, 50 Cent and Kanye in the Hip Hop World.

Our best guess that the creative drought may in fact have resulted from technology. We can make people sing in tune that cannot sing. What does this mean? It tells me that we have lead singers that should not be singers.  Developing………………

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