Countless Californians and New Yorkers are leaving the state as the pandemic and fear rages . Nearly a million left California because of high taxes. Many are heading to the midwest or the southern states where jobs are plentiful and taxes are lower. Rock legend Gene Simmons is dumping his $22 million California Benedict Canyon estate.
Simmons bought the house from Fleedwood Mac and The Eagles manager Irving Azoff. Supposably, The Eagles were put together on the property.
“I’m finally not putting up with [paying] 60% to 70% of my gross to the government,” says Simmons. “I am going to a much more welcoming state where there is no income tax, no local and state taxes. Federal taxes are enough.”
“California and Beverly Hills have been treating folks that create jobs badly and the tax rates are unacceptable,” Simmons told the Journal. “I work hard and pay my taxes, and I don’t want to cry the Beverly Hills blues but enough is enough.”
Kanye is a big thinker. He became the biggest hip hop artist of all time. Now, he is thinking about the artist contract he signed with Universal. He isn’t very happy and wanted to negotiate a new contract. In fact, just a month ago, he posted photos of his contract on Twitter. But now Kanye has a different idea.
Kanye wants his masters. But instead of demanding that Universal Music Group returns his masters, he wants to buy Universal Music Group.
“I was thinking about buying my masters but I realized that was too small of a thought. I’m going to buy Universal” says Kanye.
“Universal is only a $33bn organization. I’m one of the greatest product producers that ever existed. And I’m a child; I’m 43 years old. I was $53m in debt four years ago. Now it’s proven that I’m the new Michael Jordan of products.”
Could West actually buy the company? Sure he could. West has a personal net worth of $5bn and could easily raise the money to buy Universal Music Group.
Universal Music Group isn’t led by an iconic figurehead. West notes, “They have another Steve Jobs, Howard Hughes, Henry Ford, Disney, Elon kind of character within their midst [referring to himself], but they are so concerned with the control of the idea of artists.
“They are using me as this artist who has attracted other artists. Also, I used them. I got famous. I made some money, I got to tour.
“I became this superstar, so we used each other. Now there’s just an adjustment that needs to be made in the relationship. I can make and I will make products that will make more money than Universal is worth.” You can watch the interview here.
Willow Robinson dropped the new EP Fall. Check out Weight of the World. He released 4 EP’s, ‘Winter’, ‘Sprin, and ‘Summer’, and now ‘Fall’. This wraps up his entire new album Seasons, Pretty cool..right?
It’s tough to pin down Robinson musically. After a few listens you’ll hear elements of rock, pop, chill, alternative, and psychedelic. That’s what I get out of it. Willow Robinson was just BBC Radio’s Artist of the Week and he has an upcoming sync in the series “American Gods.” Give it a stream.
Julia Michaels released a new track “Lie Like This” that I really like. The 26 year old changed the sound of pop music. Having written with Selena Gomez, Bieber, and Dua Lipa, Michaels is more well known among the songwriting circle than she is with the public, even having some pretty big hits herself. That’s what I like about Michaels, she’s introspective and isn’t posting bra & panty photos on instagram. She isn’t about clicks and likes, it’s about the song. While that may not work for many artists, it works for her, and that’s why I listen to her work.
If you remember, the music biz was ready to get back in business in September 2020. Festivals like Coachella were cancelled in March during the height of the pandemic and were re-scheduled for the late fall. But fall came around and the tours were cancelled. With Broadway shutting down indefinitely with a possible Spring 2021 opening, tours were pushed to the summer. Now, the summer tours are off the table and many are being booked for 2022. At this point, nobody knows. You may as well start booking for 2075. Now that the reality and nerves have settled in, artists are rushing to get product out. They’ve given up on the traditional promo run which is put out a record and start touring.
Bieber has been releasing song after song. His latest song Lonely with benny blanco is really good. Superstar Ariana Grande has announced a new album is on the way. Adele will make a rare public appearance hosting ‘SNL’ for the first time. With tours off the table, the money making avenue is streaming. Think about it, streaming now makes up 85% of all revenue in the U.S – the revenue jumped 12% to $4.8 billion in the first half of 2020.