According to Reuters, Online teen social hangout MySpace.com ranked as the No. 1 U.S. Web site last week, displacing Yahoo Inc.’s top-rated e-mail gateway and Google Inc.’s search site. News Corp.’s MySpace accounted for 4.46 percent of all U.S. Internet visits for the week ending July 8, pushing it past Yahoo Mail for the first time and outpacing the home pages for Yahoo, Google and Microsoft’s MSN Hotmail.
News Corp purchased MySpace for $580 million last year as part of a strategy to rapidly build up the media conglomerate’s Internet presence.
The EMI/Warner Merger has been this month’s heated industry news. We posted Trim Costs + Increase Efficiency = Lay Offs Many and already a top EMI executive was forced out of the company. Insiders expect an acquisition to happen by the end of the month.
I had a band walk in this week with what may end up being either insight of cataclysmic proportions or the rantings of a loser. â€?We donâ€™t want to be on freaking myspace, they said. Donâ€™t say that name around me. Every band we know is on myspace, and they like add 10,000 friends a day with some friend-bot and by the way they suck, and the Arctic Munkees suck like they should be in a bad remake of the Pink Panther they so suck, and itâ€™s all like 2005. Over.
Did you know there are moms who have myspace pages, dude? Moms more…
Modern rockers Return To Self from Nashville, TN recently signed a management deal with John WarrenÂ of 12 Rounds Management, and legal rep. Kent MarcusÂ of Zumwalt, Almon, and Hayes. The band has signed with Overtone Music Group headed by A&R Scott Frazier and Joshua Aaron
Be sure to check out B Sharp Indie Showcase that will be held at the Living Room (NYC) Tuesday July 18th.
Check out the LA Times article We aren’t all Pirates. The internet and digital technology have been both a blessing and a curse for the entertainment industry, opening new opportunities for selling music and video but also fueling rampant global piracy. According the Times the music industry is seeking in this year’s proposals isn’t merely protection from piracy; it’s after increased leverage to protect its business models.
The unsigned Dallas based singer songwriter Patrick Ryan ClarkÂ believes itâ€™s his responsibility to talk about important issues through music. According to Clark “Everyone struggles, but not everyone struggles well.Â It is through that delicate tension of struggle and conquest that we grow, so letâ€™s embrace those seasons in life.” Producer Cary Pierce brought in the right players including members from Jackopierce, Vertical Horizon, and Jewel to create a soulful, melodic, and emotional masterpiece. You can hear the Cold Play and U2 melodic influence, but Patrick Ryan Clark absolutely doesn’t compromise originality. The 11 song album is expected to be released sometime in late July or early August with tour dates to follow. Patrick Ryan Clark has shared the stage with Switchfoot, Sanctus Real, Graham Colton, etc. For more information contact Cary Pierce. Â
You may have read in the news about a lawsuit against XM Radio regarding its â€œInnoâ€? player.Â The issues in the lawsuit are of a pretty technical nature, but worth knowing about.Â Hopefully the case will settle, as XM is one of the few bright spots on the musical horizon these days, and it pains me to see them get on the wrong side of the creative community.Â (Iâ€™m one who would love to see Lee Abrams as chair of the FCC, so go figure.)
Sirius Satellite Radio (NasdaqGS: SIRI) and XM Satellite Radio (NasdaqGS: XMSR) (the satellite radio services) each recently released controversial new music players tied to their respective satellite radio services and manufactured by Pioneer.Â Each service was put on notice by the U.S. creative community that the players exceeded the scope of the statutory license for sound recordings available to satellite radio services under Section 114 of the Copyright Act (comparable to the webcasting license).Â Sirius settled with a number of record companies in a confidential agreement, and was not sued.Â (Section 114 royalties are largely administered by SoundExchange (http://www.soundexchange.com/) and if youâ€™re an artist or record company you should sign up with SoundExchange if you havenâ€™t.)Â
Doug Morris, CEO of Universal that sells one in three CDs around the world, told Reuters the ability to find star artists and generate hit records will continue to matter more for the success of a music company than simply being bigger or scaling resources.
“Everyone disagrees with me but I don’t think scale is particularly important,” said Morris, chief executive of Universal Music Group, a unit of the French media group Vivendi.” “I really don’t know what you get from actual size – you get a chance to get smaller, he said referring to the need for staff and resources cutbacks.
THE END TIMES FOR RADIO?
This year has been a drastic change for radio. For years, Labels have been involved in radio payola scheme. UMG among others has illegally provided radio stations with financial benefits to obtain airplay and boost the chart position of its songs
But Morris said that he thinks Spitzer’s investigation might have backfired by making radio companies play even safer than usual to avoid being suspected of being paid to play new artists.
“I think the initial object of Spitzer’s intrusion into the record business was to really put everything on a level playing field, he said.” “Spitzer cleaned it up and put in regulations that makes everyone much more careful about what they play – but its slowed down the radio playlists,” he said, referring to the addition of new artists’ songs to radio programming.
SELLING CD’s IS A TOUGH BUSINESS, NEED TO ENGAGE IN NEW BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES
The Music business is currently at its tipping point with the decline of physical CD’s, with the lack of “Hits”, as its faced with explosion of both illegal and legal digital music.
Morris said for companies like Universal to do well in the future, they will need to evolve from the current model of record production and distribution to becoming a more diverse music company developing new revenue streams effectively becoming an entertainment company rather than just records.
“We’re going to branch out more into television and movie projects but you have to remember we’re not good at television or making movies so we have to be very careful.” Morris said the current change-over to digital music could generate potentially much bigger rewards than previously imagined for record companies if they could adapt the business to new technologies.”The guy who got it right was Steve Jobs he came up with the complete thought – from the store through to the iPod. Simple to use, inexpensive and we helped launch it.”
Doug Morris seems to have the right intent in moving forward in the ever-changing music industry. Although selling CD’s remains a core business for any label, one needs to seek new business opportunities to survive. I also agree that major and indie labels should focus on breakthru artists that have the potential to create blockbusters. The seventies, eighties, and nineties provided healthy record sales and career artists. Now we have 30,000 releases a year and no “blockbusters” other than a few exceptions. Throwing thousands of rubber darts against the wall and hoping one sticks is aÂ costly game with guaranteed losers. Although, IÂ completely disagree with his comment regarding the investigations into the radio payola scheme backfired. Radio Payola was one of the 7 deadliest sins the industry committed. No excuses for trying to turn a “turd into a hit”. Once upon a time the industry sought out breakthrough artist’s that changed culture, changed platforms, and even changed playlists. Then, the radio playlistsÂ dictated the industry and signings. Currently radio is in a state of chaos. “It chopped off eachother’s head”