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Apple Computer: iTunes visits skyrocket on Christmas Day
Apple iTunes website on Christmas Day was up 413% when compared to last Christmas as new iPod owners ran to the web to download iTunes, according to Hitwise.  Overall, the iTunes website increased by 1,222% in the same period, and outnumbered visits to Zune.net by 30 to 1. Bill Tancer, general manager of global research at Hitwise said “Competitive offerings have not yet succeeded in capturing the attention of music listeners, and the surge in visits to the Apple Store shows that iPod owners are also engaged in filling and accessorizing their new devices.” (Briefing.com)

In other Apple News……………………..

Steve Jobs recieved 7.5 Million in stock options without Apple’s Board Approval
Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer, was handed 7.5m stock options in 2001 without the required authorization from the company’s board of directors. Apple is among more than 160 companies that have owned up to stock option backdating – handing options to executives and other employees at exercise prices that were set in hindsight at favourable levels – a scandal which has led to the departure of a number of chief executives. The SEC is investing into the matter. (Richard Waters)

and……………….

Shares from Apple fell by close to 2 percent in midday trading on Thursday after the revelation that Steve Jobs was handed 7.5m stock options in 2001 without the required authorisation from its board of directors.

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  • Simon Cowell becomes highestpaid British TV star of all time…
    Simon signed a $20 million-a-year “golden handcuffs” deal with ITV to make him the highestpaid British TV star of all time.
  • Radio’s finally roaring onto the Internet.
    It was a slow start – but now the internet streaming push of Clear Channel, CBS and others pays off. They now account for a full one-third of all unique visitors who listen to radio over the Internet. And the total unique visitors to the sites of CC and CBS stations alone now make up more than 20% of the Internet radio audience. J.P. Morgan report analyst John Blackledge says “close to 45% of all unique visitors to the terrestrial operators sites” are going to Clear Channel websites.

 

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  • Record Labels Sue Web Site Operator
    Record labels including Arista, Warner Bros., Capitol and Universal sued the operator of the Russian music Web site AllofMP3.com on Wednesday, claiming the company has been profiting by selling copies of music without their permission.
  • American Idol champ Taylor Hicks only sold 298,000 during the holiday week. Seems kind of low during the holiday week. Could it be the promotion? Promotion included 20/20, the American Music Awards, “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno,” “Good Morning America” and “Live With Regis and Kelly, MTV TRL. Hicks doesn’t have a single charting in the top 50.

Carrie Underwood first week sales -  315,000
Ruben Studdard frst week – 417,000
Fantasia’s recent release – 133,000

Clay Aiken “A Thousand Different Ways,” hasn’t topped 500,000 in the 2½ months it has been up for sale

  • Viacom drops out of venture to take on YouTube
    Media conglomerates has halted the plan to form a network-backed rival to YouTube.

 

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This has been a pivotal year in the record business. For better or for worse, a lot happened this year that will greatly impact the future of the music industry. Regardless of how you see this past year’s events, we’re looking ahead to the future and thinking of solutions. Let’s recap 2006 and see what we have learned…

The year of the million dollar question. The sale of physical CD’s has shrunk yet again, despite the belief that digital downloads serve as promotion for the physical product. With consumers opting to download singles rather than albums, the loss is not being made up digitally. So how do we make up the loss? To be continued…

The year consumers got somewhat smarter. Paris Hilton bombed, Jessica Simpson flopped, Pink flopped and Gwen ‘will’ flop. Consumers didn’t buy into overhyped celebrities cutting albums. Although there is little evidence proving they are turning to more ‘legitimate’ performers, the decline in pop sales has been…surprising.

The year of fuzzy math and friendbots. 30,OOO plays on a myspace page and 10 friends at a gig. Nice try guys……….

 

 

The year everbody thought they were going to be stars. Forgoodness sakes, Time magazine picked “YOU” as the person of the year. The internet created ego monsters. Too many people bought into the propaganda that the internet alone could break an act. WRONG! The internet is too big of an ocean. Most aren’t paying attention.

The year labels began seeking new revenue streams. Universal got into the hardware business. Universal struck a deal with Microsoft’s Zune by getting a dollar for every unit sold.

The year of Youtube. Millions of people turned to the user generated site to watch their favorite videos, however Youtube hasn’t yet proved it can impact sales. Another million dolllar question.

The year of lawsuits. Universal called Myspace and Youtube copyright infringers and sparked a first landmark battle with Myspace.

The year the hip hop died. This year, rap and hip hop became a parody of itself just like 80’s glam metal. The music became so embarassingly bad that it began getting bad press in non-rap outlets. Yes, its dying a slow death. There is hope for this genre as more artists start to speak out against false imagery, however with so much money in the wrong hands, it will surely bottom out before major changes are made.

The year when the entertainment industry was introduced to the long tail. The long tail claims we will see less blockbusters due to a fragmented society and more choices. Naysayers claim too many choices suppress the consumer and they will walk away with nothing. We agree.

The year of ‘absolute’ hype. Hype has inflicted the music industry like no other. We now have 100,000+ releases a year. We have thousands of blogs promoting different bands calling them the ‘saviors of rock n roll’. PR companies send out thousands of emails asking us to check out the ‘buzz’ bands of the moment. Artists send out their own press releases, believing their own hype. Getting tired yet? We are. Do yourself a favor and IGNORE it. When a great band comes along, you will know it.

2006 has been a dark and confusing year, leaving everyone wondering what the future could possibly hold. Although there were some hints toward really great music making a comeback, it was scattered at best. KOAR is on a crusade. Next year we are looking forward to better artistry, better business, and new methods. The KOAR staff is looking forward in discovering artists that deliver a message and delivering songs that challenge the world as well as inspiring future artists. KOAR will continue to search for solutions for the hardest problems. In 2007, KOAR will be adding a message board to further communication among our readers. We will feature a variety of topics intended to work together and pull us all out of this confusing time in music.

Until then, we wish our KOAR readers a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and safe and healthy New Year!

-Kings of A&R

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  • Powerspace who is repped by lawyer Dan Friedman signs to Fueled By Ramen.
  • Philadelphia alternative act Liam and Me who KOAR talked about signs to Thrive Records.
  • Sparks the Rescue signs to Double Blind Music.
  • Warner Music is acquiring a majority stake in Roadrunner . The agreement gives WMG 73.5 percent of the company for $73.5 million. In the U.S., Roadrunner Records will be a freestanding label group within WMG’s Atlantic Records Group.
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