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What’s Next For Metallica? Lars Ulrich, Metallica drummer, mentioned that the band only has one album left to record for Warner Brothers under their contract. Lars Ulrich insuinated that the internet plays an important role in Metallica’s future and stated that they were watching the moves of others including Radiohead and Trent Reznor. (cnet)

Top Current Albums:
Mariah Carey – TW (462,000)
Leona Lewis – TW (94,842) Total 300,232
R.E.M. – TW (29,985) Total 192,449
P.O.D. – TW (12,797) Total 42,385
NIN – TW (11,749) Total 50,019
Nickelback – TW (9,789) Total 6,736,276

Confused Idol: American Idol may look into serious changes after the ratings dip according to the New York Post. Since the ratings dip, staffers at Idol have created a survey asking viewers how they would react to possible changes in the show’s format. Even though the ratings have decreased, the show is still HUGE.

“We’re not in denial,” Fox exec Preston Beckman told Broadcasting & Cable, the TV business weekly. “It’s still the biggest show on TV, but that doesn’t mean there are things we can’t do.

iPod Slump: Check out this article in the New York Times how Apple will prepare for an iPod Slump. ‘Apple sold 10.6 million iPods in the first three months of 2008. It has a 73 percent share of the music player market in the United States and a growing share abroad’.

New Coldplay Single: Coldplay sent out an email informing the world that they will be giving away their new single, ‘Violet Hill’, as a free download beginning tomorrow. The free download will be available for a week.

New Music: Pop country artist Shannon Nicole has posted a new song
Buses and Trains on her myspace. St. Louis radio station KYKY just added the song.

Recommended Shows: Alternative band, My Getaway, will be performing this Tuesday, April 29 at 8:15 p.m. at the Knitting Factory in Los Angeles. They were voted as #1 unsigned band in Alternative Press.

Recommended Listening: Raincoats by U.S Royalty. For fans of Deathcab.

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Starbucks has decided to walk away from the recorded music business.

Instead, ‘Starbucks will hand over day-to-day management of its year-old music label to Concord Music Group, as it strives to contain costs and rejuvenate its coffee shop business’.

‘Just recently Starbucks unveiled its Hear Music label with great fanfare. Paul McCartney was the first artist to release an album under the Hear Music label, which has since also released CDs by Joni Mitchell and James Taylor, among others’.

Ken Lombard, who oversaw Starbucks’ music unit for much of its existence, is also leaving the company.

This isn’t the first time Starbucks had a failure. In 2006, Starbucks promoted a movie, “Akeelah and the Bee,” which turned out to be a box office flop.

‘It also scrapped a plan to allow customers to create customized CDs in its stores’.

‘In recent months, however, the chain’s overall fortunes have soured due to a sharp downturn in U.S. consumer spending. On Wednesday, the company blamed hard-hit housing markets in California and Florida for slowing sales and warned that its quarterly and 2008 profits would be below expectations’.

“There are people who can handle it better,” Bob Goldin of industry research firm Technomic said of Starbucks’ music business.

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Mariah Carey’s Monster First Week: Mariah’s new album moved 463,000 copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan, making it the pop diva’s biggest debut sales week ever. Only a handful of artists in the past year have sold 500,000 out of the box in the first week, hence, this is an amazing story.

Yoko Ono Randomly Wages War: Yoko Ono, the queen of peace, is ready to pick up her rifle and sue the filmmakers of “Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” for the unauthorized use of John Lennon’s song, “Imagine.” “Expelled” documents how teachers and scientists alike are being ridiculed daily, denied tenure and even fired believing there is evidence of “design” in nature and challenging the current orthodoxy that life is entirely a result of random chance. It’s a bad day for Darwin…

It’s A Beautiful Day: 10 Years has a new video for their single Beautiful which has become an instant hit on Youtube, making it the #1 most watched rock video for the day. The video was directed by Paul Boyd (The Cult, Blind Melon) looks at the co-dependent atmosphere spawned by the Lindsay-to-Britany-to-Paris media-merry-go-round that has swept up the paparazzi and American tabloid culture. The female lead in the new clip is Rebecca Ginos, the significant other of Maroon 5 lead vocalist Adam Levine. The new album “Division” will be released May 13th.

Recommended Listening: Endlessly by 7th Son.

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An interesting column is posted on Ad-Supported Music Central titled ‘The Myth of Music Discovery’. Idolator also comments on music discovery in their posting ‘Do You Really Care What Your Friends (Or Some Dudes You Don’t Really Know) Have Been Listening To Lately?

At the Leadership Music Digital Summit yesterday there was a session on investing in new music opportunities with the idea that “The next big thing is going to be music discovery”. But Mark Cohen thinks differently, in fact he says:

“The first is that people don’t seek to discover new music – it just happens. They don’t listen to the radio, watch TV or talk to friends for the purpose of discovering new music. This is a byproduct of the intended object of the interaction. The Internet music discovery sites, even with their social networking skins, assume the primary object of interaction to be music discovery. This misunderstanding of consumer behavior will be fatal”.”The second conclusion I draw is that historically the number one source for music discovery – terrestrial radio – is a type of ad-supported music. The extent to which music discovery becomes a successful Internet business is wholly dependent on the success of streaming ad-supported music, as it is the on-line equivalent of terrestrial radio”.

Idolator proclaims, “putting sites that have music discovery as their primary goal in social-networking drag is ultimately a losing game”.

Of course, we believe the internet needs to be cleaned up. To much flow of information and amateur content makes it impossible for the the human mind to sift through the options. Our minds are built to organize and we need a better system that organizes. It’s time for a spring cleaning….

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Check Your Pulse: Pulse Recordings, a full scope entertainment company, which was founded by music producer Josh Abraham has inked a exclusive distribution deal with Universal Music Group indie distribution arm Fontana. Known for its work on the debut album of “American Idol” Elliot Yamin, Pulse next will release Filter’s “Anthems for the Damned” on May 13 along with new releases from the Outline, Ima Robot and Lukas Haas will follow.

EMI Drama: What are the issues affecting the restructuring of EMI? Well, the key crucial issue is the provision that allow superstar artists to leave a label if a “key man” such as a label president or A&R executive who signed the act leaves or is fired.

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New Music: Listen to Suitcase Afternoon by Ricky Young. This is for fans of Wilco, Neil Young and Dylan. These tracks are perfectly fitting for a Sunday drive on the Pacific Coast Highway.

A Troubling Time For Magazines: Ad pages for the three biggest music magazines slid 26% in the first quarter and now the the auto industry has cut magazine ad spending by 21% in the first quarter. Regardless of the the grim outlook, magazine publishers are still optimistic about the future claiming that the Internet has increased their value to readers. “They need a credible guide,” says Mr. Madden. “Nothing online can be that guide.”

Blender $11 million (down 9% from first quarter 2007); 110 pages (down 20%)
Rolling Stone $31 million (down 27%); 195 (down 33%)
Spin $8 million (up 27% from 2007); 146 (up 22%)
Vibe $18 million (down 19% from 2007); 185 (down 22%)

Amazon Removes Idol Contestant: ‘American Idol’ contestant David Cook’s album “Analog Heart” was available for downloading on Amazon’s MP3 site. It skyrocketed to #1 beating out the latest release from Mariah Carey. Amazon yanked the digital album from its site along with all the snippets.

Recommended Listening: Listen to How To Ruin A Reputation by
Return to Arms. Of course emo/punk bands are dying a slow death, but we will always recommend artists with a good sense of songwriting no matter what style – except for rap!

I heard this track yesterday titled Should’ve Known Better on Music Choice yesterday and it caught my ear. Call me cheezy, I can take the heat. Regardless, it’s a good up-tempo rock song by a band called Cinder Road. The band is being managed by the same team who manages Nickelback.

Kings of A&R: You heard it before and you will hear it again and again. We want to hear new music from new artists. We want to hear music from artists with substance and style. Give us some great songs and we will give something back. Email Tips@Kingsofar.com with a link to your myspace and a song that we should be listening too. Never let us scour through your Myspace music player trying to find a good song, that’s not fair and you should be your own best critic…

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