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The CEO of The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) believes that the illegal swapping of copyrighted music online has been “contained,” claiming that legal digital downloads continues to grow while unauthorized music trading online has seen no growth.

“The problem has not been eliminated,” says RIAA CEO Mitch Bainwol. “But we believe digital downloads have emerged into a growing, thriving business, and file-trading is flat.” Apple’s iTunes Music Store (which has sold over one billion tracks), has greatly assisted the rise of digital music, according to industry executives.

One second commercials?
Clear Channel
is considering make its Less Is More campaign much more about less. The radio giant is developing Blink, which would showcase one-second commercials.  Senior VP-creative for Clear Channel Radio, said that the purpose of the potential initiative is “to find new uses of radio for advertisers who are continually asking us to demonstrate that our medium can successfully extend brands

Bonnaroo’s allotment of 80,000 tickets was sold entirely through the festival’s Web site. Headliners include Radiohead, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and Phil Lesh and Friends, Bonnaroo will present well over 100 acts on its nine stages.

 

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Orange County alt rock act Great Glass Elevator who we posted in KOAR’s Higher Learning has signed to Atlantic. They self released an EP All In The Golden Afternoon in April 2005 which has sold over 1,200 CD’s. This band strives for spontaneity, admirably pushing itself into new territory. This proves that some young bands still have original ideas within this generically boring music scene. Listen to the tribal influenced track Fike Philophobia 

Coolfer reports that Suzanne Vega has signed to Blue Note. She released Solitude Standing in 1987 which garnered critical and commercial success including two successful singles; “Tom’s Diner“, and “Luka“.

American Idol finalist Katharine McPhee signed with RCA Records and 19 Recording Limited. She will begin working with famed songwriter and producer Diane Warren who has worked with Heart and Cher. Each contestant signs a contract with one of Bertelsmann’s music labels because Bertelsmann owns half of Sony BMG. American Idol is managed by 19 Entertainment which is owned by the international joint venture CKX, Inc.

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Definitely check out the record from unsigned Hello Vegas which is fronted by Adam Reiter. Adam started in the music business with a band by the name of Student Rick, and after six months of being together they were signed by Victory Records.  Adam walked away from Student Rick after co-founding the band and years of touring due to not feeling complete with the music / project on a whole. Adam will be on the road this summer supporting his record which was produced by John Naclerio ( My Chemical Romance, Brand New). For more information contact  Jeff Sackman, (703) 966-2402,  or legal Bryan K. Christner (323) 962-0366. Check out the track My Toungue is Tied

 

Another band we are digging coming straight out of Boston is Violet Nine who recently released a full length “Any Wonder” on indie label PKG records. The record is gritty atmospheric, melodic, and surprisingly produced by Greg Archilla (Matchbox 20, Blue October, and Collective Soul). Check out the tracks Yell it Out and All That Glitter.

 

 

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KOAR RantsThe modern music industry is a business of numbers. Number of records sold, number of shows played, price of guarantees, number of radio spins, number of downloads, etc etc. All of these values are maintained with the hopes of calculating the odds of success with any given band. In this paradigm, the artists that rise to the top are either extremely talented musicians with a good sense of melody and hooks, or extremely talented business people with a good sense of marketing and promotion. Either way, the numbers must add up…to something.

Similar to beefing up a resume for a new job, a one-time gig pay out of $500 at a friend’s birthday party, a third pressing of a cd due to stolen boxes, being the 10th caller on a radio station, or an opening spot in a ‘sold out’ benefit gig can greatly increase a smaller band’s worth when spun right. This small scale fuzzy math only gets bigger and more complicated the higher up you go. A platinum selling artist doesn’t have to sell a million copies. A number one radio song in the country can sometimes be attributed to less than 20 stations. Somewhere, there is a cluster of intern computers with 10 thousand copies of a particular itunes exclusive. Surveys and tests that claim a random sampling are usually anything but, and results stay in line with whatever the conductor was out to prove in the first place. Ever notice how every radio station is #1? Everything from the collection of the data to the results can be manipulated and skewed in whichever direction you’d like.

Most people know this goes on and they turn a blind eye, if for no other reason than complete disinterest. The ‘bandwagon’ strategy seems to work better on music executives than most music listeners. I don’t care how many copies of ‘Glitter’ Mariah shipped to retail, or how much she paid for the chart position, I know sucks when I hear it. After factoring in spin, payola, human error and hype, numbers become virtually pointless. So the real question is, if numbers don’t really mean anything, how is anyone to know if a new band is good or not? Your guess is as good as mine.

In other news, Kings of A&R is ranked the #1 music site in the history of the internet according to our latest poll of staff members.

AJ, KOAR

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Satellite Party, which features ex-Janes Addiction frontman Perry Farrell and ex-Extreme guitarist Nuno Bettencourt, recently signed a deal with Columbia Records. 

Despite strong album sales, the Dixie Chicks tour is struggling in several markets. Pre-ticket sales are below expectations and several dates will be postponed or cancelled. Initial ticket sales are averaging 5,000k in 15,000 capacity venues. I doubt it is the political stance that is contributing to poor ticket sales and more or less blame the struggling economy.

Study: Web is the No. 1 media
Web media is the dominant at-work media and No. 2 in the home, according to a new report from the Online Publishers Association. 50 million Americans per day in 2005 used the Web as their primary news source.

Radio Advertising Continues to Shrink
According to Media Week the radio industry’s advertising slump continued with revenue dipping 5% compared to last year.  National ad sales fell 7%, while local sales decreased 4%. Agency buyers point to the increasing number of alternative and new media options available. While radio isn’t the only medium losing dollars to the new media, it’s probably being hit the hardest.

Red Hot Chili Pepper’s “Dani California” is number one on both the active rock chart and the alternative chart. They had another great week on the charts selling 87k TW.

Breaking Benjamin’s new single Diary of Jane went for adds and will no doubt hit number one the active rock charts in given time. After listening to the record the band will take home a gold record if not platinum.

The new AFI recorddecemberunderground that dropped yesterday is expected to sell 200k+ first week. Thirty year old frontman Davey Havok is intriguing and mysterious. He is a cut above the rest and knows how to work the stage and the camera. If you haven’t seen the Miss Murder video check it out here which was directed by Mark Webb.

Speaking about Mark Webb, this director is a wanted man by every major and indie. He changed the platform for MTV. He is responsible for the best directed videos including My Chemical Romance “Ghost of You“, All American RejectsMove Alongetc.

 

 

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