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Dua Lipa is set to trademark her name. Moreover, you’re only trademarking a name if you’re set to rake in tons of cash – and that she is.  She became one of the richest pop singers with only two albums under her belt and she beat the odds because most artists fizzle out after their first album. Right now Dua Lipa is in high demand and ready to make fortune.

You would think the UK singer would be disappointed with the inability to tour.  Ironically, pop artists don’t need to tour to pay the bills. They can launch a slew of side ventures ranging from clothes, cosmetics, and books.  With all the business thrown her way, the 24 year old singer must make the right decisions. When to say yes and when to say no. It’s balancing act of being in the public eye and creating demand and over-saturation.

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Who else believes artists should stand on their own foundation rather than leeching off of other artists? How many celebrity collaborations do we need to see? I’m not souring on collaborations because I personally love some of them, especially if it’s birthed from true passion and an artistic motive. The pairing of Shawn Mendes and Camila Cabello was fantastic and Sam Smith & Normani was quite good as well.

With Zoom now at the forefront, many of the collaborations are simply arranged  for “audience reach” and “eyeballs”. There is simply no synergy and connection between the artists. I’m not the only one who thinks celebrity pairing is overplayed, many industry insiders have noted that the specialness has been lost from the overabundance of artist collaborations. When the pairing goes wrong, both artists are effected. I won’t mention names, but there are plenty of circumstances when collaborations did not benefit either artist. Let’s get back to art and play smart.

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The Canadian streaming king was immune to COV19. The Weeknd had an explosive week despite around the clock media coverage on the pandemic.  His new album After Hours (Republic)  moved 400k+ units.

It worked for The Weeknd but it may not work for everybody. One may think it’s easy to go unnoticed when the media has grasped the public’s attention with social distancing and self-quarantine measures. For instance, French singer Thomas Dutronc, who has Iggy Pop on his new album has delayed the release.

Is it a good time to release music?  Established artists with expectations should probably wait until the seas calm down. They certainly won’t get the eyeballs they are looking for. Also, tours are postponed indefinitely.

In times of hardship, people want to explore new terrain and leave the familiar. Lets call it the new normal.  Lesser known artists without a huge fan base and promo runs will benefit.  People seek out new artists, new ideas, and new reads in a crisis because they want solutions and new experiences. New artists should release lots of new music now. Artists are living through history. This history will produce a new crop of artists that will spark generational change.

New artists could even garner that much more attention if they could get those ‘Pre-COV19’ artists to stop diverting attention on themselves with silly live streaming shenanigans.

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Jay-Z’s company Roc Nation have filed takedown notices against “deepfake” videos that use artificial intelligence to make him rap Billy Joel’s We Didn’t Start the Fire and Hamlet’s “To be or not to be” soliloquy.

Here is the video, it’s pretty cool, even though Jay Z wants nothing part of it.

The anonymous creator of the YouTube-hosted videos, known as Vocal Synthesis, has said that copyright notices were filed by Roc Nation, stating: “This content unlawfully uses an AI to impersonate our client’s voice.” The two aforementioned videos have been removed, though others remain, including one of the rapper taking on the Book of Genesis.

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Spotify added another 6 million subscribers in the first quarter. Still they are lowering expectations as ad sales got hit by the fallout of the pandemic.

Spotify said streaming of its music and podcasts is on the rebound and in many markets has already “meaningfully recovered.”

Spotify’s total subscriber base, which includes paid subscribers and subscribers that opt for Spotify’s free service with ads, reached 286 million, at the high end of the company’s expectations.

“Despite the global uncertainty around COVID-19 in Q1, our business met or exceeded our forecast for all major metrics,” the company said in it letter to shareholders. “For Q2 and the remainder of the year, our outlook for most of our key performance indicators has remained unchanged with the exception of revenue where a slowdown in advertising and significant changes in currency rates are having an impact.”

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