UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP AND MASS APPEAL JOIN FORCES
TO LAUNCH MASS APPEAL INDIA
Urban culture–focused entertainment company, Mass Appeal, and Universal Music Group (UMG) have announced the launch of Mass Appeal India, an innovative new label seeking to export India’s burgeoning hip–hop culture to the rest of the world. Based in Mumbai within Universal Music India’s (UMI) headquarters, Mass Appeal India will operate as a multi–channel partnership between the two companies. Mass Appeal India will sign and collaborate with talent from India’s fast–growing hip–hop scene and, via Mass Appeal’s global network, will work with brands and content creators to connect the culture with a global audience.
Mass Appeal India will leverage UMI’s marketing and promotion teams within India, while Mass Appeal will lead release strategy within the U.S. and Canada. All Mass Appeal India releases will be distributed exclusively through UMG worldwide.
Alongside the launch, the label has announced the marquee signing of leading Indian rapper DIVINE. A key figure in the emergence of the “gully rap” movement, DIVINE’s brutally honest Hindi rap draws inspiration from his own life and the streets of Mumbai, set to beats that wouldn’t be out of place in a Los Angeles or New York studio. His single “Jungli Sher” was the first Indian single that Apple Music released worldwide, and DIVINE was also the first Indian artist to be featured on BBC 1 Xtra’s Fire In The Booth in 2016. DIVINE is currently working on his debut album, Kohinoor set to be released later this year.
In announcing the launch of Mass Appeal India, Nas said, “I was first introduced to DIVINE’s music through the brilliant film Gully Boy. I’m proud to announce the launch of Mass Appeal India with DIVINE as the first artist on our roster. Hip–hop is the world’s most influential culture – it’s only right to share what we do at Mass Appeal on a global level. We’re excited about joining forces with the team at UMG India to help further spark a movement that is constantly in the making.”
Devraj Sanyal, MD & CEO of UMG, India & South Asia said, “Over the past few years UMI has concentrated on creating a culture of artist–first, non–film music to satisfy India’s rapidly evolving music audience. Hip–hop has been a key area of this focus and we have found the natural partner in Mass Appeal, Nas & Peter to help realize our dream of breaking Indian hip–hop in the region, as well as to the rest of the world together. It was only right to lead this global announcement with the signing of India’s number one hip–hop star, DIVINE for his highly anticipated debut album. As he articulately puts it, ‘Apna time Aayega’ which means, ‘our time will come’ – now is certainly the time for Indian hip–hop to break into the mainstream.”
In additional UMG news, the leading music company and Dakia Global Enterprise, an impact investment holding company, have announced the formation of a partnership to develop a new music–focused experiential hospitality category. Under the agreement, the companies will create immersive music experiences (including premiere hospitality, lifestyle club, live entertainment and next–generation retail), as a vehicle to further expand on the relationship between fans and music and artists. The partnership’s initial mandate will be to identify potential projects and properties, with announcements regarding those to come at a later date.
WARNER MUSIC GROUP AND AUDIOMACK FINALIZE NEW PARTNERSHIP
Warner Music Group (WMG) announced last week it has entered a partnership with influential music streaming and discovery service, Audiomack, the platform’s first licensing deal with a major label. The two companies will collaborate across content concepts and explore ways to break emerging talent, connecting passionate music fans and tastemakers with rising talent before they reach the mainstream.
“It’s important that we take a principled but adventurous approach to empowering entrepreneurialism,” said Allan Coye, Vice President of Digital Strategy & Business Development, Warner Music Group. “We’re pleased to have found an innovative way to structure a commercial partnership with a discovery platform like Audiomack. The service is a terrific addition to our ecosystem, opening up exciting avenues for our emerging artists to directly engage an active audience thirsting for new music. We’re very much looking forward to working with David, Dave, and the entire Audiomack team.”
“We’re extremely excited to embark on this revolutionary deal with WMG,” said Dave Macli, CEO, Audiomack. “Warner has helped to break thousands of artists to a broad audience and our partnership with them will only foster the growth of their burgeoning talent by connecting them to Audiomack’s eight million monthly users.”
Launched by Macli and David Ponte in 2012, Audiomack fast became recognized as an incubator for rising talent. Having initially focused on the mixtape community, it was the first platform to feature music from some of today’s most popular hip–hop artists such as A Boogie wit da Hoodie, Migos, Fetty Wap, Kevin Gates and Chance The Rapper. Since then, the service has evolved to encompass exclusive releases from a range of genres, including hip–hop/rap, R&B, Latin, electronic, Afrobeats, dancehall/reggae and others. The platform has achieved 210% year–over–year growth in daily active users across the last 12 months and exists as a service that is completely free to independent artists, including the ability to upload an unlimited amount of music. Additionally, Audiomack creates original content via its Trap Symphony series, which pairs an orchestral ensemble with hip–hop stars to create reimagined versions of their top songs; the Fine Tuned series, where artists pair up with live instrumentalists to create intimate renditions of their latest releases or biggest hits; and a number of other video and editorial offerings.
The platform’s Audiomack Monetization Platform (AMP), which combines ad revenues and distributes to artists by stream count, was launched in 2015. A premium subscription tier for listeners was added later which costs $4.99 per month and offers added functionality in addition to removing ads.
HASBRO SET TO ACQUIRE ENTERTAINMENT ONE
Hasbro, Inc. and Entertainment One Ltd. (eOne) have revealed that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Hasbro is set to acquire eOne in an all–cash transaction valued at approximately £3.3 billion ($4 billion USD). Under the terms of the agreement, eOne shareholders will receive £5.60 in cash for each common share of eOne, which represents a 31% premium to eOne’s 30–day volume weighted average price as of August 22nd.
“The acquisition of eOne adds beloved story–led global family brands that deliver strong operating returns to Hasbro’s portfolio and provides a pipeline of new brand creation driven by family–oriented storytelling, which will now include Hasbro’s IP,” said Brian Goldner, Hasbro Chairman & CEO. “In addition, Hasbro will leverage eOne’s immersive entertainment capabilities to bring our portfolio of brands that have appeal to gamers, fans and families to all screens globally and realize full franchise economics across our blueprint strategy for shareholders. We are excited to welcome eOne’s talented employees from around the world into the Hasbro family.”
“On behalf of the board of eOne, I am very pleased by this exciting development, which is a testament to eOne management’s vision, leadership and solid execution. This transaction creates significant, immediate value for our shareholders as it recognizes the strength of our future–facing business model,” said Allan Leighton, eOne’s Chairman of the board.
The acquisition will move forward Hasbro’s position as a leading play and entertainment company, adding beloved, global brands with proven success across platforms, to Hasbro’s portfolio. eOne’s ability to deliver high–quality content across platforms will build upon Hasbro’s ability to monetize and bring to market its brands in new formats, including over–the–top (OTT) and premium platforms, music, location–based entertainment, AR and VR.
Among the titles joining the Hasbro portfolio under the transaction are eOne’s widely–successful Peppa Pig and PJ Masks, with a number of additional brands in development. The eOne portfolio also includes international feature film distribution company Sierra/Affinity; Amblin Partners with DreamWorks Studios, Participant Media, and Reliance Entertainment; Makeready with Brad Weston; unscripted television production companies Whizz Kid Entertainment and Renegade 83; leading live entertainment firm Round Room Entertainment; record labels Death Row Records, Dualtone Music Group and Last Gang; and award–winning emerging content and technology studio Secret Location.
GLOBAL NEWS UPDATES…
According to sources for Billboard, TikTok parent company, ByteDance, is reportedly in conversation with major labels about securing global licenses for the launch of a new streaming platform. The conversations are being discussed in tandem with TikTok’s license renewals and would see ByteDance entering the streaming race and competing with Tencent in the Chinese market. It’s been reported that ByteDance has presented a trial of the service, which incorporates a significant social networking focus, to a select group of people. ByteDance’s streaming offering would have immediate access to a built–in audience of more than 1 billion active users across its app portfolio, counting a large youth demographic. ByteDance had intended to roll–out the new service, which will include free and paid tiers, by the end of 2019 but due to the negotiation process, it could be delayed into 2020.
Media companies continue to make their entries into the podcast space as Disney Music Group revealed its own For Scores offering last week. The interview series will spotlight composers working across film, TV and game titles associated with the company. Produced by Disney Music veteran Maria Kleinman, alongside Treefort Media, the new podcast brand, hosted by journalist Jon Burlingame, is set to release four interviews at a time with the first set featuring Henry Jackman (Wreck–It Ralph, Big Hero 6); Harry Gregson–Williams (Penguins, upcoming live–action Mulan film); Pinar Toprak (Captain Marvel); and Alan Silvestri, who’s worked across all four Avengers films. The next round of podcasts is scheduled to roll–out in October, with another set for early 2020. From a branding perspective, For Scores will not be blatantly presented as Disney to allow for inclusion of composers from across the media firm’s portfolio of brands including those under the Fox and ABC umbrellas. The podcast will be made available through the Disney YouTube channel as well as via the new Spotify Disney Hub and links across Disney’s socials.
Warner Records has announced Claudia Butzky to the role of Sr. VP of Brand Partnerships, Strategic Marketing & Commercial Synch Licensing. Butzky reports to Warner Records Co–Chairman & COO, Tom Corson, while based in Los Angeles. Joining Warner Records from RCA Records, Butzky had held the role of Sr. VP, Global Brand Partnerships, and played a key role in campaigns for P!nk, A$AP Rocky, SZA, Childish Gambino, H.E.R, Pentatonix, Justin Timberlake, SIA, Pitbull, Miley Cyrus, Alicia Keys, Foo Fighters and Khalid, among others. Prior to joining RCA (J Records) in 2000, Butzky spent time at Island Records and Def Jam Recordings. Her career began in sales, transitioning to digital sales and non–trade sales, before entering the branding and partnerships arena. Butzky’s resume includes initiating successful campaigns with leading brands such as American Express, CoverGirl, Riot Games, Pepsi, Harmon/JBL, Chrysler, Anheuser–Busch, American Airlines, Weedmaps and Verizon, as well as both the NFL and the NBA.
A partnership has been finalized between YouTube Music and popular driving navigation app, Waze. The partnership integration commenced last week and will see YouTube Premium and Music Premium subscribers able to select songs, albums and playlists via the Waze app, bypassing the need to switch apps while driving. As a preferred audio app within Waze, YouTube Music joins streaming alternatives Spotify, Pandora, Deezer, iHeartRadio, NPR One, Scribd, Stitcher and TuneIn. Available initially in Brazil, the integration is set to enter all 50 markets where both apps are available moving forward.
A&R Worldwide has learned that Stephanie Russo will be joining iHeartMedia as Artist Relations Manager and will relocate back to New York City. Russo was most recently with Maverick Management in Los Angeles, and prior to that worked at Republic Records in New York City.
Porsche has partnered with Apple Music to see its Taycan, the auto brand’s debut all–electric vehicle offering, becoming the first vehicle to hit the market with full Apple Music integration when it rolls out in September. The partnership will offer Apple Music subscribers the ability to stream the full library from the DSP as well as Beats 1 via the Taycan’s Porsche Advanced Cockpit dashboard. The deal will also see Taycan owners provided with in–car internet at no cost for three years along with a six–month free Apple Music subscription for new Porsche owners. For existing Porsche owners who maintain an Apple Music subscription – three months free of the service. Features included for Taycan owners include the ability to use voice control to bring up Apple Music including requesting songs, albums, playlists and radio stations as well as the option to generate customized radio stations on the streaming platform around songs from terrestrial radio and save songs from the radio to their libraries. Porsche will also serve up exclusive Apple Music playlists.
In other Apple Music news, the streamer has rolled out the Shazam Discovery Top 50 to provide a global ranking of 50 artists who are making moves each week. The chart will make use of Shazam’s algorithms to make predictions on emerging artists and tracks for subscribers of Apple Music. No.1 on the debut chart is Ohana Bam’s “All Roads Lead Home (Hobbs & Shaw Remix).” Initially based on data from only 11 countries including the U.S., U.K., Brazil, Mexico, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Russia, the chart is set to incorporate additional countries soon. The new chart updates each Tuesday and is available exclusively via Apple Music for streaming.
Songtrust has added Richard Aurigema to its team as VP of Copyright, reporting to Global Head of Rights Management Operations, Brad Yuan. In his new role, Aurigema will oversee the Songtrust copyright and publishing operations teams, responsible for the administration of the company’s comprehensive catalog of copyrights and those of its clients. With the company now administering more than two million compositions under both the Songtrust and Downtown Music Publishing umbrellas, the portfolio encompasses a diverse range of clients, right types and deal structures. Aurigema will focus on delivering scale, efficiency, and precision to the copyright operation and work with the internal technology team to develop tooling in support of these efforts. Aurigema’s background includes a number of roles overseeing teams of copyright professionals, having led music copyright administration for EMI, BMG and, most recently, Sony/ATV. With Sony, he worked closely with the company’s songwriters and producers, managed song catalogs, oversaw the on–boarding of new clients and worked with the various offices globally to streamline copyright efficiency.
Pandora has rolled out its expanded Independent Artist Submissions tool which has, since its launch, accepted more than 64,000 releases from over 44,000 indie artists, including the likes of Lindsey Stirling, Trampled By Turtles and Break of Reality. As part of its AMP artist marketing platform, the expanded capabilities of the Independent Artists Submissions platform joins a suite of of self–serve creator tools such as the Artist Audio Messages (speak directly to your fans with personal soundbites), Featured Tracks (a boost that helps new music reach more stations and listeners), and Pandora Stories (combining the best worlds of music playlists and podcasts). The redesigned and enhanced new tool offers new possibilities for indie artists to grow their audience on Pandora and directly engage with their fans and find new ones, while allowing for more submissions and reducing wait times. As of last week, artists are now able to access the new Independent Artists Submissions tool online, or by clicking on “Submissions” from the dropdown menu on any AMP profile.
Continuing it’s long–standing partnership with Hamburg, Germany’s Reeperbahn Festival, A&R Worldwide and globally–respected music and media conference, MUSEXPO, are set to bring a version of the latter’s highly–successful “Play Us Your Hits” session to the Reeperbahn conference programming for 2019. The session allows registered delegates to submit their music for potential playback for a panel of leading A&R executives from Europe, the U.K. and the U.S. to receive value feedback and insight. At MUSEXPO, the “Play Us Your Hits” session has resulted in a number of outcomes and label/publisher conversations for artists that have submitted for the opportunity over the events history. Submissions are currently open to registered delegates only. For more information, and to register for Reeperbahn 2019 which takes place from September 18th – 21st, visit www.reeperbahnfestival.com.
Spotify’s Co.Lab event series is set to make its video debut to bring the workshop style events geared towards helping artists build their careers to a wider audience. Co.Lab events focus on a range of music business topics while providing an opportunity to network with peers and industry leaders. Finding Your Audience will be the first Co.Lab workshop released on video, featuring music supervisor Morgan Rhodes, tour director Christian Coffey, Sharell Jeffrey (Founder, QLEEN Artist Relations), and Amit Nerurkar (Founder, face–less). The four video shorts will be available for free streaming on YouTube. To–date, Co.Lab has brought events to New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Wellington, New Zealand since its launch last year.
In other Spotify news, the streamer has announced it will extend the free trial period of its ad–free tier for individuals and students to 90 days from the standard 30 days. The new offer will reflect on duo and family plans in the coming months as well. In expanding the trial period, Spotify joins Apple Music who offers the same discount with additional competitors like Tidal, Amazon Music Unlimited, YouTube Music and Deezer maintaining a 30–day offer.
Columbia Records has announced Azim Rashid’s appointment to Sr. VP of Urban Promotion for the label. In the role, Rashid will take on oversight of the division which works with Columbia’s roster at urban radio. Most recently, Rashid was with Roc Nation as Sr. VP of Promotion and counts previous roles with Motown Records, Atlantic Records and Capitol Music Group.
The Orchard has entered into the Japanese market via a fully–staffed office, based in Tokyo. The Japan headquarters will be helmed by The Orchard’s VP for the region, Yuuki Kaneko, whose resume includes time with Amazon Japan’s music team. The Orchard’s Tokyo office is the starting point for a round of 40 more international bases to be launched as the company continues growing its global footprint with plans to set–up locations in Taipei, Seoul, Warsaw, Madrid and other cities while further building out current offices in Nashville, Sydney, Moscow, Copenhagen, Milan and Barcelona.
Becoming the latest streaming service to add a discounted college student subscription plan is SiriusXM, having unveiled its Student Premier tier priced at $4/month for eligible students. The discount represents a 69% savings over the standard Premier offering of $12.99/month while maintaining the same content including its music channels, talk shows and new collection of personalized stations via Pandora. The student subscriptions allow for access to streaming through the SiriusXM app and web player as well as connected devices such as Amazon Alexa, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and others.
Influential rock/metal label, Napalm Records, is building upon its N. American footprint with a new office, located in Hoboken, New Jersey. Based in Austria with an office in Berlin, the 26–year–old label’s roster counts the likes of The Smashing Pumpkins, DevilDriver, Alter Bridge and Scott Stapp (Creed). Joining the new headquarters in Hoboken is Bram Teitelman (Marketing Manager) and Natalie Camillo (PR Manager) who team up with the existing New York City–area staff of Shawn Quinn (Label Manager), Sonia Goldberg (Digital Marketing Manager) and Logan Butler (Webstore Manager).
AXS has tapped Shaun Edison and Stephanie Street to join the ticket company’s sales division as VP, Sales for Music and Sr. Director, Sales for Musc, respectively. Edison’s new role will see him tasked with developing and managing engagements with venues, promoters and artists for the AXS platform worldwide. His resume includes stops at Eventbrite Music and StubHub. Most recently, Streeter led the migration of clients from Ticketfly to Eventbrite and with Eventbrite Music, developed and executed strategic partnerships between the company and music festivals, venues and promoters. Her role with AXS will see her maintaining similar responsibilities.
Chugg Music has signed Gold Coast–based Country Rock artist Casey Barnes to its growing management and recording roster. Alongside his signing to Chugg Music, the Golden Guitar finalist has also joined Select Music for live representation. Barnes had a solid start to 2018 when his current album, The Good Life debuted at No.1 on the iTunes Country Album Chart and peaked at No.2 on the ARIA Country Album Chart. Radio support came for a number of singles from the full–length including, “The Way We Ride,” “Be Mine,” and current single, “Better Days.” Lead single, “Ain’t Coming Home” spent consecutive weeks at No.1 on the Country Tracks Top 40 chart. The Good Life has seen Barnes grow his audience to more than 134,000 listeners monthly across streaming services with his recordings generating 4.37 million streams, and over 40,000 fans interacting with the artist via online platforms. Led by iconic global music executive, Michael Chugg, and his business partner Andrew Stone, Chugg Music’s roster of talent also includes Sheppard, Lime Cordiale, Avalanche City and The Griswolds. Barnes’ recent performances at the Groundwater Country Music Festival on the Gold Coast won him the inaugural P&O People Choice Award and he is set to make his way to the U.S. in November. In the U.S., Mark Roeder of William Morris Agency (WME) will be representing Barnes for live.
Non–profit organization, Nvak, has finalized a worldwide deal with Warner Music’s Alternative Distribution Alliance (ADA) for the distribution of music by artists in regions experiencing social, political and/or cultural turmoil, the company announced last week. Marking the debut release under the deal is the single “Love the Way You Feel,” written/recorded by Brunette, an 18–year–old Armenian singer, songwriter and producer. Founded in 2015, Nvak was set–up by singer/songwriter Tamar Kaprelian. Nvak now counts a community of more than 500 young musicians across Armenia and Israel and is preparing to enter Malawi next month. Among its initiatives, Nvak hosts annual summer workshop events in each country seeing successful songwriters and producers teaching collaborative songwriting, music production and music business to support the local talent. With a focus on young women and girls, Nvak also provides year–round programming, mentorship and additional workshops. In other ADA news last week, the company has secured an exclusive worldwide partnership with multi–Platinum act Incubus for the support of their new record label under the same name. The deal sees ADA providing global sales and distribution support, as well as a full offering of label services in the U.S. such as radio promotion, marketing, publicity, digital strategy and synch licensing. The band’s single, “Into The Summer,” went live last week alongside an official music video and marks the first release under the label.
A round of promotions has been announced to the Nashville–based team of Entertainment One–owned Dualtone Music Group. Among those elevated are Lori Kampa, a 15–year veteran of Dualtone, from VP of Radio Promotion to Sr. VP of Radio Promotion; Whitaker Elledge from Sr. Director of Artist Development to VP of Artist Development; and Joey Luscinski from Sr. Director of Production to VP of Production. All three report to Dualtone’s CEO & Co‐Founder, Scott Robinson, and President, Paul Roper.
Tidal has unveiled new social features to its platform which will provide users the capability to share music and video to Instagram Stories and music from Facebook Stories. Available on iOS and Android devices, the feature will see music, including playlists, posted to Instagram and Facebook Stories appearing as an image with videos shared to Instagram Stories and Facebook Stories appearing as short preview and still image, respectively. Tidal’s move follows suit with competitors Spotify, Apple Music and Deezer who have all made moves into the social arena. The Tidal social features started making their way to the 53 markets the streamer operates in last week.
The board of Hipgnosis Songs Fund Limited and its investment adviser, The Family (Music) Limited, have announced the acquisition of a music catalogue from The Chainsmokers, the 14th most streamed artist globally on Spotify, with 41 million monthly listeners. In total, the songs in the catalogue have been certified 20x Platinum and 2x Gold by the RIAA, and 9x Platinum and 2x Silver by the BPI. Composed of artist/producer duo Alex Pall and Andrew Taggart, The Chainsmokers have garnered 55 No.1 and 245 Top 10 chart positions globally, as well as a Grammy win for Best Dance Recording in 2017, two American Music Awards, seven Billboard Music Awards, and nine iHeartRadio Music Awards. Their 2016 Grammy–winning single “Don’t Let Me Down” featuring Daya, reached No.1 on the U.S. Hot Dance/Electronic Songs and is certified 6x Platinum in the U.S., having been streamed more than 1.2 billion times. “Closer” featuring Halsey, made it to No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100, where it remained for 12 weeks, and hit No.1 on over 30 charts worldwide. The award–winning track has been streamed 1.6 billion times had has been certified Diamond in the U.S. Hipgnosis has acquired 100% of the Chainsmokers’ interest, including ASCAP income, in their catalogue, which encompasses 32 songs, as well as 10 additional songs written by Taggart, including “1–800–273–8255” by Logic featuring Alessia Cara and Khalid.
Native Tongue has announced the signing of Melbourne singer/songwriter, Ben Stewart. Stewart is already well–known as the frontman for alt–rock outfit Slowly Slowly while his solo project, Congrats, sees him entering the pop arena. Native Tongue’s Managing Director Jaime Gough says, “We’ve been fans of Slowly Slowly for a while now, and when we met Ben it was clear he had the drive and passion to be a career songwriter across many genres of music, including his solo project Congrats which is going to be a lot of fun to work with.”
UTA has added electronic acts Pendulum and Knife Party to their roster to see the two Rob Swire–led groups represented exclusively by the agency for N. America and Canada. This past weekend, Pendulum closed out the main stage of South West Four, one of the U.K.’s biggest electronic music festivals. The performance marked the first time in more than ten years that all three original members of the group took the stage together outside of their home country of Australia. The appearance also signified the start of their “Trinity” World Tour which will bring the group through the U.K., Europe, N. America and Asia throughout next year. Knife Party recently released a new EP, Lost Souls, the first collaborative release for Swire and Gareth McGrillen in nearly four years.
Kobalt’s AWAL and Juicebox Recordings have finalized a new partnership counting worldwide recording agreements with Franc Moody and Joe Hertz. Under the partnership, AWAL will also offer distribution, marketing and promotion support to the full Juicebox roster of artists.
In other Kobalt news, the company has announced the promotion of Ann Tausis to CEO of Neighbouring Rights. Since Tausis assumed oversight of the division in 2013, it has distributed more than $250 million to over 2,200 artists. Tausis will be based out of Kobalt’s London headquarters.
Australian business group TEG, which acquired Paul Dainty’s firm and owns Australian competitor to Ticketmaster, Ticketek, has finalized the acquisition of Bristol, England’s MJR Group. The deal sees TEG expanding its footprint in Europe with MJR Group promoting around 2,000 shows each year and owning/operating four venues such as Cardiff’s TramShed and The Mill in Birmingham. MJR also counts investments in six venues, and ownership of the Propaganda franchise, the U.K.’s largest club night that has a footprint in Australia, the U.S., Brazil and Ibiza, with weekly attendance of its parties reaching 25,000 people. Under the acquisition, MJR Group’s three partners, Richard Buck (Chief Executive & Head of U.K.), Scott Mesiti (Head of Australia & New Zealand), and Dan Ickowitz–Seidler (Head of U.K. Venues & Propaganda) will continue their roles under the TEG group. TEG will maintain their Sydney, Australia headquarters with MJR Group’s U.K. business renamed TEG U.K.
As it seeks to better serve the burgeoning European urban scene, Vevo has rolled out ROUNDS, a platform that will look to spotlight emerging and established talent across the hip–hop, rap and R&B genres. A sister series to Vevo Ctrl in the U.S., ROUNDS will deliver video content of artists performances, filmed using a 360–degree portraiture effect, with upcoming featured artists including Headie One, Aitch, Lefa and A2.
Dan Jones has been tapped by StubHub as the firm’s new VP of International. Based in Madrid, Jones’ new role will see him continuing to lead StubHub’s expansion into other markets globally, overseeing operations for the EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa), Latin America and Asia Pacific regions. Before joining StubHub, Jones held the role of Sr. VP at Ancestry, also serving as General Manager of International while leading the company’s Global Content division. Jones’ tenure at Ancestry saw him looking after the 2015 roll–out of the Ancestry DNA consumer genomics offering in the U.K., Canada and Australia. Additionally, he spearheaded investment strategies to bring Ancestry to new territories such as Germany and Mexico. Prior to Ancestry, Jones was at The National Archives of the U.K. for six years in a number of positions, leading business development, online services and marketing/PR. Between 1996 and 2002, Jones held roles in digital content and intellectual property acquisition and licensing with the BBC and BBC Worldwide.
Longstanding nu–metal outfit Korn hit the virtual reality stage last week through a partnership with Artix Entertainment. The band entered the VR concert space with free virtual performances on AdventureQuest 3D and 2D AdventureQuest, available on Android and Apple devices, as well as tablets and computers. The partnership with Artix so the band recreated as video game characters to perform for players that found a “magical concert ticket” to teleport them to the event. A paid alternative featured a “backstage pass” and a chance for users’ characters to take a selfie with the virtual band.
In other VR performance news, global pop act Billie Eilish is making her way to Oculus Venues with the filming her upcoming performance in Madrid, Spain on September 3rd. The show will make its way to the Oculus Venues platform the same evening and is being rolled out as a partnership between Oculus and Supersphere, an immersive–streaming company. The Oculus Venues offering launched in 2018 with a performance from Vance Joy and its catalog also counts sporting events, comedy shows, movies and other content. The platform allows users to move between solo–viewing and social modes during viewing.
Beatsource, a new DSP geared toward open format DJs, has added a new member to its Board of Managers in A–Trak, a well–known veteran of the dance music space. Beatsource is a JV between Beatport and DJcity, the subscription digital DJ record pool. A–Trak joins the service alongside its President & DJcity Founder/CEO Brian “DJ Quickie” Wong and Edwin “DJ Phenom” Paredes, Beatsource COO and DJcity President. The group will work in partnership with Robb McDaniels, CEO of Beatport, as well as Beatport’s executive team. Set to roll–out its online store next month, Beatsource is also planning the release of Beatsource LINK by the end of the year which will tap into Beatport’s technology for integration of the Beatsource store directly with DJ software/hardware allowing for online/offline mode streaming.
Angry Mob Music Group has signed exclusive worldwide co–publishing and administration agreements with producer/multi–instrumentalist Ken Nana and rapper/vocalist Mike B. of MIKNNA, a Los Angeles–based melodic hip–hop/R&B duo. The administration agreement covers their catalog and future releases as MIKNNA, while the co–publishing agreements encompass their solo work and share of songs they have individually written for other artists. Since joining as MIKNNA in 2016, the duo has discovered their strength as collaborators, going on to release their introductory EP, 50/50 (Side A), after finding early success via Spotify’s Fresh Finds playlist. In 2017, they embarked on their first headlining U.S. and European tour. They’ve also lent their respective talents as songwriters/producers to other artists, including the Anderson .Paak–fronted group The Free Nationals, as well as Terrace Martin, Far East Movement, and Big K.R.I.T. MIKNNA released their debut full–length, Escape, in early January 2019 and began releasing a series of new singles in July 2019, starting with “Summertime Shine” and “Mirage.” Their next track, “Cold as Ice” feat. Quincy, will be released on August 30th.
Sound City Korea has announced seven U.K. acts to play at this year’s Zandari Festa as part of 2019 event. Among the acts chosen are The Sherlocks, Wooze, Too Many T’s, TXT, The Tea Street Band, Scarlet and Two Weeks In Nashville who will join the Korean festival, set to take place from September 26th – 29th. Sound City is supported using public funding by Arts Council England and this year the showcase will be in collaboration with Fred Perry Subculture. Sound City Korea, part of the Liverpool–based Sound City brand, seeks to connect musicians and industry professionals with the rapidly growing Korean market which boasts an annual spend of $53 million on music and digital content. In its first four years, Sound City Korea, with funding support from Arts Council England, helped 80 artists and industry professionals attend Zandari Festa. Leading up to this year’s Zandari, Sound City will run workshops in both Liverpool and Manchester for the chosen artists to prepare themselves for their trip.
Leading intelligent treasury management platform, Centtrip, has reached the 500 music client threshold this month, just three years after launching Centtrip Music, a specialist division of the business that focuses on helping touring artists and their representatives maximise their earnings. The company’s extended suite of products and services cater for everything from international tours, to festivals and royalty runs with Centtrip also offering an award–winning prepaid multi–currency Mastercard program, and an online treasury management platform with real–time reporting and reconciliation. In 2017, Centtrip facilitated its first major tour with a Robbie Williams World Tour alongside ie:music.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Allison Kaye, Chris Taylor, Mark Beaven, Livia Tortella, Guy Oseary, Eric Greenspan, Andrew Brightman, Sunil D’Sa, Sara Qazi, Mike Caren, Detlef Schwarte, Tony Mandich and Anna Bond.
JACKASS OF THE WEEK
Have you ever sent a text message you regretted, clicked on the wrong link, posted an inappropriate message or image on social media, accidentally replied “send all” on an E–mail, or made a total ass of yourself? Yes, we’ve all had a jackass moment at one time or another in our life. Yes, we’ve all had a jackass moment at one time or another in our life. Most of us love sports, including the collection of slips, falls, skids and fails that happen on a regular basis. Click HERE to see a great collection of international sporting spoofs to add a big smile to the almost end of our 2019 summer sports season!
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "ARTIST OF THE WEEK"– SAM JOHNSON
Singer–songwriter Sam Johnson has a potent combination; a voice as big as George Ezra, and a sense of emotional resonance in the same vein as Justin Vernon of Bon Iver. His debut EP, Eastcote, produced with multi–instrumentalist Elliot James, is the product of a period rather more intense than most people go through during their early twenties; the end of a six–year relationship, and the passing away of a beloved father. The EP captures a young man’s growing sense of who he is, vulnerability and all. His first single, “Medicine For My Brain,” released via Made Records/Universal, is his catchy calling card and a witty kiss–off to the music industry. Sam wrote the song during a jaded period, while he was cutting his teeth on the open mic scenes near his childhood home in Shropshire. Ironically, writing a song about not giving a damn about the industry is how Sam Johnson got signed. Listen to the infectious song that helped him get his start, “Medicine For My Brain” HERE. For additional information and all inquiries, please contact Bex Redwood at firstname.lastname@example.org or Keith McColl at email@example.com.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "VIDEO OF THE WEEK" – TRIBE FRIDAY
Tribe Friday is a band from Sweden making screechy indie–pop music for sad teenagers and sweaty club floors. Since 2015, they’ve been making a solid name for themselves on the Swedish indie scene – playing clubs, venues, festivals and showcases all around the country. “Sixteen Minutes” is the band’s third release this year; following up with singles “Thank God!” and “Badger,” which both received international praise and were playlisted by well–respected stations such as the UK’s Radio X, P3 (Sweden’s biggest radio station) and on the globally–syndicated and streamed Passport Approved program. “Sixteen Minutes” is a pumping, fast–paced track about being stuck in a cycle of self–detriment whilst trying to find someone who will break that cycle. The track’s upbeat tempo, energetic guitars and grandiose brass section makes it the perfect tune for extending summer. The song is produced and recorded by Noah Deutschmann of Tribe Friday, which is taken from their Trying Your Luck EP. Discover the Swedish quartet with their visual for “Sixteen Minutes” HERE and contact Matthew Reich of Artist For Artist at firstname.lastname@example.org for all inquiries.
PASSPORT APPROVED™ PLAYLIST – 8/25/2019
“PASSPORT APPROVED” PLAYLIST FOR Sunday, August 25th, 2019: The weekly import show. Heard on more than 60 radio stations on six continents weekly including: The World Famous KROQ 106.7FM Los Angeles, Radio Doble Nueve, Lima, Peru; KNRK–FM Portland OR; KNDD “The End” Seattle WA; KCJK–FM “Alternative x1051” Kansas City MO; WLKK “Alternative Buffalo” NY 107.7FM; WZRH–FM New Orleans; KHTB Salt Lake City, UT; KBZT–FM 94.9FM San Diego CA; KKDO “94.7FM” Sacramento CA; KWSS “93.9FM” Phoenix AZ; KRML “102.1FM” Carmel CA, KFRR “New Rock 104.1FM” Fresno CA; Radio 1, Mumbai, India; WCNR Charlottesville, VA; KIWR “The River” Council Bluffs, IA; 2XM Ireland (national radio); WAPS–FM “The Summit.FM” Akron–Canton, OH; WKTL–FM Youngstown, 105.5FM XFM Nairobi, Kenya; KVNV–FM Reno NV; PUK–FM Johannesburg, South Africa; KVNV “NV89” Reno, NV; KSKI–FM, Sun Valley/Twin Falls, ID; WITH “90.1FM” Ithaca, New York; UCFM 87.8FM Australian Capital Territory, Australia, WRUR 88.5FM Rochester New York; WCRU–FM Hamilton, NY and on The Independent FM (iHeartRadio) in the United States and many others. Also, on the worldwide web and twice–weekly segment on Flux FM Germany (Berlin, Brandenburg and Stuttgart) and Allgauhit–FM Bavaria Germany, as well as streaming on one of the world’s fastest growing streaming platforms, JioSaavn.
Listen to this two hour show by clicking HERE:
LARKINS – “Sugar Sweet” (Good Soldier Songs, UK)
SAN MEI – “Something Good” (Unsigned, Australia)
WAITING FOR SMITH – “Trade It In” (Four One Seven Records, UK)
TRIBE FRIDAY – “Sixteen Minutes” (Unsigned, Sweden)
SOPHIE & THE GIANTS – “The Light” (Unsigned, UK)
KIDDO X GASHI – “Coming Down” (BLNK Music, Sweden)
TEN TONNES – “Counting Down” (Warner Music, UK)
MADS LANGER – “Me Without You” (Sony, Denmark)
YONAKA – “Rockstar” (Atlantic, UK)
DOTAN – “Numb” (7 Layers, Holland)
EMMI KING – “Million Dollar Movie” (Unsigned, Germany)
SPEAKER FIRST – “If It Ain’t You” (Vulcan, Indonesia)
LILLY AMONG CLOUDS – “Love U 4ever” (Wintrup, Germany)
TREE LINED STREETS – “No Friend Of Mine” (Unsigned, Ireland)
FEMME SCHMIDT – “Golden” (Unsigned, Germany)
BLITZ UNION – “Revolution” (Unsigned, Czech Republic)
LUNA BAY – “Call The Night” (Unsigned, UK)
JACK GRAY – “Fools” (Warner Music, Australia)
THE WHITE LAKES – “Wolves” (Ditto Music, UK)
PALACE – “Running Wild” (Fiction Records, UK)
BITTER’S KISS – “Just Like Heaven” (Unsigned, N. America)
LIME CORDIALE – “Inappropriate Behaviour” (Chugg Music, Australia)
WHENYOUNG – “The Others” (Virgin/EMI, Ireland)
VIDEOCLUB – “En Nuit” (Unsigned, France)
LOST IN STEREO – “Adrenaline” (Unsigned, Scotland)
SHLOMI ASH – “To The River” (Unsigned, Israel)
VINCI – “Lions” (Unsigned, Ireland)
TIM SCHOU – “Beat Around The Bush” (Iceberg Records, Denmark)
BLACK HONEY – “I Don’t Ever Wanna Love” (Fox Five Records, UK)
MAGNUS MIA – “Fool’s Mirage” (Unsigned, Hong Kong)
SEA GIRLS – “Damage Done” (Unsigned, UK)
LUKE ZEPHYR – “Take Me Instead” (Unsigned, N. America)
(Check out the Passport Approved Radio “Featured Artists” on the daily profile exclusively on AllAccess.com including Lilly Among Clouds, Luke Zephyr, Sam Johnson, BLOW and Roe)