SONY MUSIC OPENS DOORS ON NEW BERLIN–BASED HEADQUARTERS
Sony Music Entertainment and Sony/ATV Music Publishing announced last week the opening of its new offices and European headquarter in Berlin, Germany. With 8,000 square meters of office space for Sony Music employees, the location will also be equipped with a recording studio and state–of–the art music rooms to record and play new tracks. In bringing its operations to Berlin, Sony Music will contribute to job growth in the city across a range of roles including artist and repertoire management, marketing and operational functions.
“Once again, Sony Music’s decision proves that Berlin has worldwide appeal as a cultural, lively and international center. Sony Music is diverse and creative, which fits in well with our colorful music metropolis,” says Michael Müller, Governing Mayor of Berlin.
“I am very excited to start a new chapter in Sony Music’s story within the vibrant city of Berlin, one of Europe’s key creative power hubs,” said Daniel Lieberberg, President, Continental Europe & Africa, Sony Music. “I am particularly pleased that we are bringing under one roof Sony Music Germany, Switzerland, Austria, the music publishing and international classical music entities, as well as our international team, which is responsible for the region Continental Europe and Africa. We are committed to further empowering and supporting our artists fueled by a strong and dynamic team and an incredibly modern and inspiring new infrastructure.”
Regular panels and workshops will be given for external partners, music aficionados and young talents to learn more about the role of a modern music label.
“We very much look forward to expanding our synergy possibilities with Sony Music. At the same time, we will continue to deliver the best creative and administrative service to our local and international songwriters and publishing partners in these exciting new premises at Bülowstraße,” said Patrick Strauch, MD Sony/ATV Music Publishing Germany.
The Germany and European headquarters of Sony Music had previously been located in Munich.
THE ORCHARD ANNOUNCES NEW PARTNERSHIPS WITH SONY/ATV
Last week, The Orchard announced a partnership with Sony/ATV Music Publishing to provide its distributed artists and labels with an integrated publishing solution, broadening the scope of The Orchard’s service offerings for recorded music.
Via its global network, Sony/ATV will handle all aspects of global song representation and royalty collection, allowing clients of The Orchard to benefit from the scale, infrastructure and premium royalty rates of the publisher. Among the first Orchard–distributed clients to take advantage of services under the new cooperation are Harry Nach, Kiddtetoon, G Herbo, Summer Salt and Unique Leader Records.
The partnership is one of a number of ventures under the One Sony banner, which expands collaboration between Sony’s network of businesses. At the same time, this initiative creates new opportunities for Sony Music’s artists’ catalogs across entertainment platforms.
“As a leader in artist services we are pleased to expand our offerings through this partnership with Sony/ATV. The Orchard thrives on empowering creators, and now we can build an environment where songwriters have the space to grow roots and take advantage of The Orchard as a true home for artists,” said Brad Navin, CEO, The Orchard.
Sony/ATV Chairman and CEO Jon Platt stated, “We are happy to share our extensive music publishing network and expertise with The Orchard in this new venture. The Sony/ATV family believes in the importance of creative development and professional support, so we are uniquely positioned to provide world–class service to more of The Orchard’s talented community of songwriters.”
Also last week, The Orchard revealed a global distribution agreement with London–based record company Ignition Records, and their associated labels Big Brother Recordings and Sour Mash Records. The new deal marks the first time the company has placed distribution of their catalog to a single company. Ignition is home to Big Brother Recordings, which houses Oasis’ catalog, and songwriter Noel Gallagher’s Sour Mash Records. Included among the Ignition Records catalog are albums from artists including Stereophonics, Primal Scream, Joe Strummer, Courteeners, The Coral and others. The first release with The Orchard was a special vinyl reissue of Oasis’ (What’s The Story) Morning Glory, the U.K.’s fifth best–selling album of all time, which was released on the 25th anniversary of the album’s initial release on October 2nd.
UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP & DAKIA U–VENTURES UNVEIL UMUSIC HOTELS
Universal Music Group (UMG) and Dakia U–Ventures, the entertainment impact investment group, announced last week the launch of UMUSIC Hotels, a new global collection of music–based experiential hotel properties, as part of their previously announced joint venture. Among the first three UMUSIC Hotels properties announced will be located in Atlanta, Georgia; Biloxi, Mississippi; and Orlando, Florida; with additional cities across the U.S. and worldwide to come.
Embodying each location’s unique spirit, the hotels will draw inspiration from their respective local culture and serve as creative hubs in communities around the world, promoting positive social change, education and innovation through music. UMUSIC Hotels are committed to helping their communities thrive, creating jobs for local residents, supporting local businesses and suppliers, and creating opportunities for local artists, such as the establishment of new state–of–the–art music venues.
Robert Lavia, Chairman at Dakia U–Ventures LLC., said, “Every destination holds a great story just waiting to be told through its cultural heritage and its music. Through this new concept, we will both help people discover new ways to channel their love for music and the arts and help empower the transformation of communities worldwide through cultural, inspirational, creative and conscious collaboration. And we’re thrilled to work together with Universal Music Group who shares our vision and passion about the powerful role of culture and music for each community we touch.”
Bruce Resnikoff, President and CEO of Universal Music Enterprises, said, “Through music’s unique power to inspire and unite – especially given UMG’s unparalleled roster of artists and labels – UMUSIC Hotels will both highlight these cities’ rich music heritages and provide new opportunities for artists to reach fans in immersive, innovative and authentic ways.”
Pyramid Hotel Group has partnered with the JV for the U.S. operations of the hotels. Warren Fields, Pyramid’s Chief Executive Officer, added, “We’re excited to work with the Dakia U–Ventures and Universal Music Group teams to launch this new category of experiential hospitality and helping to create properties that truly embody the spirit of the communities of which UMUSIC Hotels will be a part. We share in the vision to give fans, guests and our communities best–in–class experiences around the world.”
UMUSIC Hotels will create immersive experiences for fans, guests and artists alike, with music and entertainment at the forefront of design and guest experience all around the globe. As part of their commitment to the local community, each property will be designed to complement the city landscape and authentically incorporate elements of the local music scene. The UMUSIC Broadwater Hotel in Biloxi will seamlessly integrate a stunning performance venue and a luxury hotel with an immersive architecture style. In Atlanta, the UMUSIC Hotel will include a holistic entertainment venue, and UMUSIC Orlando’s design will similarly reflect a music-first experience for guests.
GLOBAL NEWS UPDATES…
Warner Music France has announced Alain Veille as President, succeeding Thierry Chassagne, who is retiring after a 35–year music business career. Having been with Warner for almost two decades, Veille currently serves as Managing Director, Digital and Export Director for the company with his new post taking effect at beginning of 2021. Veille will report to Stu Bergen, Warner Music’s CEO, International and Global Commercial Services. Veille’s industry career began in 1993 at Sony Music France before he transitioned in 1997 to Universal Music France. He spent four years at Universal, with oversight of areas including TV marketing. He headed to Warner Music Group (WMG) in 2001, taking on the role of Managing Director of WEA France and, in 2018, assumed his current position. Chassagne is the longest serving leader in the history of the Warner Music France company. He assumed oversight of the company in 2004 and among his many accomplishments with the company, led its merger with Parlophone in 2013.
Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) has finalized an exclusive, global administration deal with The Verve frontman, Richard Ashcroft. Ashcroft’s work has garnered him two Ivor Novello Awards in addition to a number of Brit Awards, Q Awards and NME Awards with The Verve. After the release of their debut full–length, A Storm in Heaven in 1993, and 1995’s follow–up A Northern Soul, the band’s album Urban Hymns generated international success in 1997. Urban Hymns included the widely–successful single “Bittersweet Symphony,” as well as hits “The Drugs Don’t Work” and “Lucky Man.” The Verve’s fourth album, Forth, made it to No.1 on the U.K. Albums Chart, and No.23 in the U.S. As a solo artist, Ashscroft has recorded five albums.
Warner Chappell Music has signed an exclusive worldwide administrative deal with producer, songwriter and engineer, Ben Billions. A multi–Platinum creative, Billions’ credits include Grammy–winning albums such as Lemonade from Beyoncé, and The Weeknd’s Beauty Behind The Madness and Starboy. Additional work for Billions includes hits with Yo Gotti, Nicki Minaj, Future, Maroon 5, G–Eazy, Kehlani, Travis Scott, Meek Mill, Post Malone, Lil Wayne, YoungBoy Never Broke Again and others.
Sony Music and Tencent Music Entertainment have tapped Victor Lee to serve as Managing Director of their JV operation, Liquid State. Liquid State was launched in 2018 to provide an outlet for electronic and electronic dance music acts with recent successes including Corsack and R3hab. Artists that Lee has previously worked with include Avicii, Bob Sinclar, Kylie Minogue, Gucci Mane, Wyclef Jean and Whitney Houston. Before joining Liquid State, Lee served as VP of International Streaming & Marketing at APG (Artist Partner Group), where he was tasked with managing the international relationships with DSPs such as Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Deezer, QQ Music, JOOX and KKBOX, as well as others in Asia. He also delivered global music streams for Ava Max, Bazzi and Charlie Puth, since 2019.
Disney Music Group (DMG) has made its way to Apple Music, bringing subscribers to the DSP a collection of 30+ playlists, classic soundtracks, radio stations and more. This new destination gives Apple Music’s users an opportunity to engage with content from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars and other brands, in a new way. The Disney destination on Apple will be updated regularly and the offering launches with a Disney Halloween feature. The launch also includes a Disney Hits Radio special on the new Apple Music Hits radio station. Hosted by Hollywood Records’ artist Sofia Carson, the radio show celebrates nearly 80 years of Disney by highlighting music from the Disney Hits playlist, as well as exclusive interviews with artists discussing their experiences creating iconic moments in Disney’s musical history.
Amazon Music has tapped Jillian Gerngross as Director for the platform’s European operations. Having previously served as Director of Marketing for Amazon Music, Gerngross’ new role will see her taking on oversight of the streamer’s European business, taking the lead on all aspects of operation such as industry relations, editorial, programming and marketing across the U.K., Germany, France, Italy and Spain. Gerngross takes over the role for Paul Firth who transitions to Director of International for Amazon Music, looking after non–U.S. markets including Europe, Japan, Latin America, India, Canada and others. Gerngross came to Amazon Music in 2013, just prior to the roll–out of its streaming offering, and playing an integral role in setting up and supporting the growth of the U.S. business before heading to the U.K. in 2016 to head up marketing.
BMG has announced that it is eliminating a standard U.S. record label deduction which serves to reduce the income of songwriters, composers and lyricists. Across the U.S. industry, the various discounts and caps which are contained in the so–called controlled composition clause cost songwriters an estimated $14 million last year. With immediate effect BMG will voluntarily refrain from applying the reductions to any new record deals and remove them from its entire catalog over the next year. In principle, the controlled composition clause is simply a way for labels to secure the licenses they need to release records. In practice, it has become a mechanism by which labels force artists who are also songwriters to accept a reduced royalty on physical product. Because it often establishes a cap on the total royalties payable on a given album, if artists record songs by third party songwriters they can in extreme cases end up not only earning no money for their own songs but even owing their labels. BMG has now set up a taskforce, led by COO Ben Katovsky, specifically tasked with improving fairness in music contracts. Its responsibilities include BMG’s recently announced review of historic acquired record contracts for signs of racial bias.
Following its recent large–scale round of promotions, UTA has revealed that two leading music agents have joined the team in Jeffrey Hasson and Matt Meyer. Both Hasson and Meyer were previously at Paradigm with Hasson assuming a leadership role in UTA’s Nashville office and Meyer joining the Los Angeles–based team. Hasson has worked with acts such as Young The Giant, Tori Kelly, Surfaces, Jamey Johnson, Dashboard Confessional, Dayglow, Blues Traveler, Coin and Ruston Kelly, as well as others. Meyer’s work includes that with Halsey, Machine Gun Kelly, Lil Dicky, Don Toliver, Tinashe, Yungblud, Cash Cash, Eden and The Knocks.
FKP Scorpio Sweden has expanded and strengthened their booking department with the addition of Johanna Beckman as Sr. Creative Curator & Promoter. Beckman’s appointment sees FKP Scorpio seeking to give Sweden even more live experiences and world–class events. Beckman has an extensive 17–year experience within the Swedish music industry. She has been a talent buyer, manager for acts like Dungen and Jenny Wilson, and has arranged both concerts and festivals. Most recently, she’s served as the Creative Director at the venue Trädgården/Under Bron. Beckman is also known for her work with development and programming at the Gagnef Festival and was involved in starting up the artist collective Ingrid. She currently also booking acts for By:Larm.
Universal Music Israel has tapped Meytal Shevach as A&R Manager for the company which will see the journalist/radio host taking the lead on the signing and development of talent in the country. Previously, Shevach was with Deezer where she served as Content and Artist Marketing Manager, as well as being a musical advisor for X–Factor Israel. She continues to be a podcast and radio host on Radio Tel Aviv.
Universal Music Indonesia has signed popular Indonesian singer–songwriter Rendy Pandugo, via a partnership with new Indonesian indie label Wonderland Records. The signing marks the beginning of a new collaborative relationship between the two companies. Wonderland Records was founded earlier this year by Mahavira Wisnu Wardhana (Inu), an experienced A&R with a successful history of developing and breaking young Indonesian talent. Alongside label activity, Wonderland provides artist management and is committed to creating a fair creative and collaborative ecosystem for its artists. Having spent over a decade as an artist, Inu joined Sony Music Indonesia as an A&R Director in 2014, where over five years he helped guide the careers of many breakthrough local talents such as Isyana Sarasvati, GAC and The Overtunes. The partnership’s debut signing, Pandugo found success after being discovered singing at cafés. Since releasing his debut album in 2017, he has garnered over 100 million global streams, including 20 million views on YouTube. His new single “Home” was released worldwide last week, alongside an accompanying music video. The track, his first to be released since signing with Wonderland Records, is taken from his forthcoming album, due for release in 2021 and was finished by multiple Grammy–winning engineer Greg Calbi.
Universal Music Thailand has announced the exclusive global signing and launch of all–star Thai girl group LYRA, in partnership with leading Thai music company IAMRecords, as the two companies commence a new collaborative relationship. IAM is Thailand’s leading artist management company and label and is home to Thailand’s most popular girl idol group, BNK48, which has more than 78 featured members. IAM’s official YouTube channel counts over 1.4 million subscribers and has achieved more than 1.2 billion video views, since launching in 2013. Formed from the ranks of the idol group BNK48, LYRA is the result of a selection process lasting more than a year which eventually saw six of the most talented members of the group chosen to form a new group. The official line–up of members includes Pun, Jennis, Noey, Fond, Niky and New, and was unveiled recently alongside the band’s eponymous debut track “LYRA,” which is available to stream now across all platforms.
peermusic has made its way into the neighbouring rights space via the acquisition of Premier Muzik, All Right Music and Global Master Rights. With discussions having initially begun between peermusic’s CEO/Chair, Ralph Peer II, and Christophe Piot of All Right Music, the acquisition was led by Mary Megan Peer, Deputy CEO of peermusic, and will join together all four companies’ staff and services. The new neighbouring rights operation will service a client roster that, between the combined firms, counts over 300 record labels and more than 2,500 performers. Clients under the All Right Music, Premier Muzik and Global Master Rights banners accounted for performers in 24% of the 2019 year–end Billboard Hot 100 songs and 40% of 2019’s year–end Top 20. The three companies included under the acquisition will maintain operations under their existing brands out of their current offices while identifying as peermusic companies.
Multi–Platinum Grammy, and BMI award–winning writer and producer, David Hodges, has sold his catalog to Kobalt Capital’s fund, where it will continue to be administered and serviced by Kobalt Music Publishing. Hodges, who is managed by Lucas Keller and Milk & Honey, has also agreed to maintain his long–time publishing partnership with Kobalt Music Publishing for all of his future works. Hodge’s catalog includes No.1 singles such as “Bring Me To Life” and “My Immortal” from Evanescence, for which Hodges is a founding member as well as “A Thousand Years” (Christina Perri for Twilight), “Because of You” (Kelly Clarkson), “Dear Hate” (Maren Morris and Vince Gill), “See You Again” (Carrie Underwood), and “Miss Me More” (Kelsea Ballerini). A highly–sought after songwriter, Hodges’ credits include releases from the likes of Keith Urban, 5 Seconds of Summer, Blink–182, Ben Rector, Weezer, Dan + Shay and Avril Lavigne. He is currently working with Ed Sheeran and Danielle Bradbery among others.
In other Kobalt news, the company has renewed its worldwide partnership with songwriter, producer, and DJ, Teddy Walton. The global deal encompasses administration, synchronization, and creative support for his current catalog, upcoming debut solo album, and future works. Walton’s catalog includes Kendrick Lamar’s “LOVE” and “King’s Dead,” and most recently the No.1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 last week, “Franchise” by Travis Scott ft. Young Thug and M.I.A, among others. Other credits for Walton include work with a range of underground and established artists, such as Jay Rock, Kendrick Lamar, Post Malone, Bryson Tiller, Drake, Travis Scott, Nipsey Hussle and others. This summer, Walton debuted his new single, “NO LOVE IN AMERICA,” and is set to release his debut solo album later this year.
Reservoir has signed No.1 hit writer–producer and multi–instrumentalist Jon Green to a worldwide publishing deal. The deal covers global rights to Green’s future works. Early in his career, Green started his own band, The Bonfires, before earning a reputation as one of the U.K.’s most sought–after live and studio session musicians. More recently, Green has transitioned to an increasingly successful songwriting and producing career, working across multiple genres. Green is currently on the charts with his co–written/co–produced Kylie Minogue single “Say Something.” He previously collaborated with Minogue on several tracks off her 2018 No.1 U.K. album, Golden. Green also co–wrote Lady A’s 2020 No.1 Billboard Country Airplay song “What If I Never Get Over You,” as well as “Live Forever” from Kane Brown’s No.1 Billboard 200 album Experiment and “Questions” from Little Big Town’s No.1 Billboard Country Album Nightfall, the latter of which he also co–produced. Additional collaborations include co–writing and/or co–producing credits with the likes of Linkin Park, Paloma Faith, James Bay, 5 Seconds of Summer, Maisie Peters, Aquilo, Jason Mraz, Jack Savoretti and others.
Concord Music Publishing has finalized a new deal with songwriter, artist, pianist and producer Robert Glasper. The new worldwide agreement encompasses Glasper’s song catalog as well as his future works. The deal is part of Concord Music Publishing’s creative venture with Loma Vista Recordings. Glasper’s breakout crossover album, Black Radio, garnered him the 2013 Grammy Award for Best R&B Album, with his career generating two additional Grammy wins, in addition to six nominations. His song, “Letter To The Free,” with Common and Karriem Riggin, for Ava Duvernay’s documentary 13th (Netflix) won him an Emmy for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics in 2017. Glasper’s portfolio of musical projects include an acoustic jazz trio; August Greene, a collaboration with artists Common and Karriem Riggins; R+R=Now, a super group bringing together hip–hop and jazz; and Dinner Party, another supergroup co–founded alongside long–time collaborator, co–producer, and creative partner Terrace Martin, and featuring Kamasi Washington and 9th Wonder. Across his musical career, Glasper has also worked with acts such as Kendrick Lamar, Kanye West, Mos Def and Bilal, Lupe Fiasco, Ledisi, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu and others. In October 2019, Glasper dropped F*** Yo Feelings, his first project with Loma Vista Recordings. He also composed the original score for the Emmy–nominated documentary, The Apollo, and the feature film, The Photograph, starring Issa Rae. Most recently, Glasper released the single “Better Than Imagined,” featuring H.E.R. and Meshell Ndegeocello in August. “Better Than Imagined” is the first single from his forthcoming album, BlackRadio 3, which is set for release in 2021 via Loma Vista.
Entertainment One (eOne) has announced a global publishing and label deal with U.K.–based singer, songwriter and producer, Sam Wills. Under the agreement, eOne has secured global collection on all publishing revenue for Wills’ complete catalog and future works, while also providing label services for the debut album from Sam’s own artist project. In addition to establishing himself as an artist in his own right, Wills has spent the last few years garnering success in the songwriting and production arenas, penning Jorja Smith’s globally acclaimed single “Where Did I Go?” (54 million streams on Spotify), and writing/producing alongside the likes of Jordan Rakei, Tom Misch, Cadenza, SG Lewis, Disclosure, Joe Hertz and Barney Artist. This year, Wills has released select tracks from his own forthcoming project, due for release in 2021. “Traingazing,” has generated more than 1 million Spotify streams, with his latest single, “Turn Back,” recently released as well.
Round Hill Music has announced a worldwide administration agreement with R&B legend Keith Sweat, including all his songwriting credits across a 45–year career in addition to future works. The catalog is jointly owned and controlled by Sweat and Open On Sunday, LLC. Keith Sweat started as the lead singer in Jamilah in 1975. He parted ways with the group in 1984 to begin a solo career, landing a recording contract with the indie label, Stadium Records, and in 1987 signing to Vintertainment Records where he released his debut album, Make It Last Forever, which sold over three million copies. To–date, Sweat has released 13 solo albums and 2 as a part of the R&B supergroup LSG. He continues to host The Sweat Hotel, the No.1 nationally syndicated R&B night–time radio show, which can be heard on over 60 stations. In May 2020, Sweat launched a live, weekly R&B music concert series to celebrate Black Music Month. Among the artists who participated were 112, NEXT, Brian McKnight, Pretty Ricky, Bobby V., Lloyd, Silk, Carl Thomas, Dave Hollister, Case, Tank, Raheem DeVaughn and Musiq Soulchild.
Deezer is rolling–out its own covers album called InVersions which will feature indie artists from around the world reimagining popular hit songs in their own style. The ten–track set became available last week, exclusively on Deezer as a Deezer Originals release. Acts were selected by Deezer with each artist choosing and recording their own song to cover. Among the artists featured are Alfie Templeman, Arlo Parks, Benee, Chloe Moriondo, Dream Wife, Ela Minus, Fontaines DC, Gus Dapperton, Gussstave and Orla Gartland.
U.K. management firm Karma Artists has welcomed LA–based Anna Schlafer to their team as they build their presence into the U.S. market. With Karma, Schlafer will work with the rosters of both Karma Artists Management and the Karma Songs publishing division. Schlafer comes to Karma following a 12–year–stint with Kobalt Music Publishing, having most recently served as Sr. Director of Creative. where her work included the signing and development of songs from Grammy–nominated producer Roget Chahayed and his publishing company Tru Sauce Publishing, as well as from Nina Nesbitt, Ella Vos, Hanson, Stevie Aiello, JS Ondara, Braves and others. Her work across the company’s global roster saw her play a key role in setting up collaborations and securing various placements such as “Say You Won’t Let Go” by James Arthur as well as releases with Jason Derulo, Kali Uchis, Aloe Blacc, Kelly Clarkson, Quinn xcii, David Guetta, Elderbrook, Kygo, AI and more. Additional work at Kobalt included that with MXM, Monsters & Strangerz, David Hodges, Pop Wansel, Oak Felder, Ariel Rechtshaid & Heavy Duty, Axident, Coffee, Linus Wiklund, Al Shux, Starsmith, Pablo Bowman, Gary Go and Iain Archer.
Sony Music Entertainment’s team in Australia and New Zealand has finalized a deal with singer–songwriter Maya Cumming, who performs as MAY–A. The artist has released three singles to–date with “Green,” “All Girls Aren’t the Same” and “Fools Paradise.” Last week saw the release of her first track under the new Sony deal, “Apricots.” The 19–year–old is managed jointly by former Amy Meredith frontman, now artist manager, Christian Lo Russo, and Matt Emsell who also co–manages 5 Seconds of Summer.
HOMEBASE, a virtual collective of global creators on TikTok from the team behind Q&A and Human Re Sources, has unveiled its inaugural class of HOMEBASE creators. Among the seven creators in HOMEBASE’s first collective are Bryan Sanon, October Odom, Paige Gold, Kevante Hobley, Nicho Stevens, Danielle Mareka and Kaitlyn Peterson. As many careers have launched out of the TikTok platform, HOMEBASE seeks to foster community digitally, while mentoring a group of TikTok creators to take their work to the next level. The creators are just finishing their final week of the month–long program with applications for the next class set to be announced soon. Beats by Dr. Dre serves as the marquee partner for HOMEBASE, as part of the brand’s ongoing efforts to amplify diverse voices and invest in the next generation of creatives. Beats have contributed to the initiative on a number of levels including hands–on mentorship, content programming and other aspects. Among the HOMEBASE coaches are Laurieann Gibson (choreographer/creative director), Cait Bailey (publicist/brand strategist), Brandon Holman (Label Partnerships Manager, TikTok), Buku Ibraheem (Music + Culture Brand Marketing, Beats by Dr. Dre), Rhys Williams (Brand Manager, Beats by Dr. Dre), Jacob Pace (CEO, Flighthouse), Ali Berman (Co–Head of Digital/Talent, UTA), Patience Wilcox (professional financial planner), Kate Kelly (CEO/Co–Founder, Chelsea Capital), and Suzy Ryoo (Co–Founder/President, Q&A).
Ingrooves is expanding its footprint into Spain with the launch of a new Madrid–based office and appointment of Country Manager, Antón Suárez. Suárez’s resume, which includes extensive background in the music distribution arena, includes stops at Altafonte and Ditto Music. At the same time, Ingrooves has announced the signing of Spanish alternative label Mushroom Pillow to a global distribution deal with the first release on Friday as singer Najwa’s new single, “Mira Como Van.”
Sound City is set to launch a series of music business masterclasses with rapper and BBC presenter VITAL, which debuted today. Supported by Arts Council England and CAPLL Ltd, The VITAL Sessions will be broadcast on Facebook Live every Monday evening, welcoming a special guest each week. In the first session, VITAL spoke with rapper J Lucia about surviving COVID as an independent artist.
Having rolled–out live streaming earlier in the year to help DJs and artists broadcast online without the worry of copyright takedowns, Mixcloud has now unveiled Tickets, a new offering for artists to generate income from live streams. The announcement came with a collection of exclusive audio–visual shows set to take place over the coming weeks from Flying Lotus, Róisín Murphy, Leon Vynehall and Lafawndah. All ticketed live streams will be broadcast live three times and ticket holders can watch any broadcast from anywhere in the world. According to an official press release, Nas, who is a recent investor in the company, is also working on a live event. The new Tickets offering is currently available to artists on an invite–only basis with Mixcloud accepting applications from artists and managers.
Six decades after it was first recorded, Ben E. King’s iconic “Stand By Me” is being re–recorded for a very special release. “#StandByMe (2020)” is a new charity single raising funds for Help Musicians, featuring a collective of leading performers. Available from October 27th via Under The Apple Tree Records, in partnership with Absolute Label Services, all funds are being raised via the #StandByMe Go Fund Me page which is now live. Among the artists who have come together under the banner Whispering Bob’s Allstars to perform the song remotely, include Mark Knopfler, Paul Rodgers, Duane Eddy, Rosanne Cash, PP Arnold, Peter Frampton, Rick Wakeman, Richard Thompson, Beth Nielsen Chapman, John Oates, Keb Mo, The Shires and Ward Thomas, among others. The new recording is spearheaded by the legendary Bob Harris OBE, who celebrates 50 years in broadcasting this year.
Johnny Nash, the singer–songwriter, actor and producer who wrote and performed the hit song “I Can See Clearly Now,” has passed away at the age of 80. Nash’s health had been declining and he died of natural causes at his home. Before the success of “I Can See Clearly Now” when Nash was in his early 30s, his teenage years were spent covering well–known standards and then, in the 60s, co–running a record company, becoming an uncommon American–born singer of reggae, and worked to help launch the career of his friend Bob Marley. Nash saw 11 of his songs reach the Billboard Hot 100, including the top 10 hit “Hold Me Tight” in 1968, and the No.1 “I Can See Clearly Now” in 1972, which stayed at the top of the list for four weeks. The song also dominated the Adult Contemporary Songs airplay chart for a month. Nash also garnered nine hits on the Hot R&B/Hip–Hop Songs chart, with “Let’s Move & Groove (Together)” reaching No.9. “I Can See Clearly Now” saw additional success in later years with covers from acts such as Ray Charles, Jimmy Cliff, Donny Osmond and Soul Asylum.
The significant losses to the music world continued last week with the passing of iconic rock guitarist Eddie Van Halen. Van Halen had long battled with tongue cancer to which we succumbed last week at the age of 65. Born in the Netherlands, Van Halen was a classically–trained clarinetist, saxophonist and pianist. His family relocated to Pasadena, CA in 1962 where Eddie and brother Alex became contest–winning piano players. Eddie fell in love with rock’n’roll and began to play drums but, after realizing his brother Alex was better behind the kit than he was, decided to take up guitar. At the time that Van Halen’s debut album was released in 1978, Eddie had already placed himself as an accomplished and innovative player in addition to being a diehard gearhead who experimented with instruments, amplifiers and effects. The band’s instrumental “Eruption,” popularized the tapping technique introduced by earlier players, propelling it even further with the use of both hands on the guitar neck, blending together percussive and melodic elements. A dozen studio albums resulted from Van Halen’s run with Eddie contributing the solo to Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” as well as to recordings from Sammy Hagar (a one–time Van Halen lead singer), Brian May, Roger Waters and LL Cool J and David Garfield. In 2007, Van Halen was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame though Eddie did not join the ceremony, and they took a Grammy win for Best Hard Rock Performance with Vocal in 1992. Van Halen’s output has resulted in sales of over 80 million albums worldwide.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Sir Lucian Grainge, Benjamin Weeden, Emma Banks, Jay Brown, Bruce Flohr, Sharon Dastur, Clotaire Buche, Ryan Whalley, Summer Marshall, Mandar Thakur, Adam Greenup, Devraj Sanyal and Lisa Worden.
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. With many people working from home due to the pandemic, it’s limiting the amount of on–job accidents, allegedly! Click HERE to see some bad days at the office, store and general work environments.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "ARTIST OF THE WEEK"– CATHOLIC GUILT
Melbourne’s Catholic Guilt write raw, emotional and disarmingly honest music while blending elements of folk, punk, rock and alt–country, to create an unashamedly vulnerable, yet ultimately uplifting and cathartic listening experience. They dub this blend ‘honest music.’ The Australian five–piece just released their EP This Is What Honestly Sounds Like (Wiretap Records), which is a confident five–song release that heralds the arrival of a band on the brink of greatness. Not only did they release their new EP, but they also launched their own video game, a 100% free three–level, 8–bit platform called Furrend Finder, based on the EP’s lead track, “A Boutique Affair.” The game sees you play the part of kitty named Lucy Furr as she goes on a quest to find and rescue her fur friends from the cage of loneliness. The song itself is an energetic punk rock anthem about the increased difficulty of making friends as we age. The track has received support at both triple j and Triple M digital in Australia as well as a number of alternative tastemaker stations in the U.S. Listen to “A Boutique Affair” HERE by the band that Alternative Press chose as one of ‘10 Genre–Bending Bands You’ve Probably Never Heard Of’ and contact Brenton Harris at email@example.com as Catholic Guilt is available for synch, licensing communities both in Australia and abroad and future international touring opportunities.
A&R WORLDWIDE’S "VIDEO OF THE WEEK" – GIRL IN RED
Rising Norwegian singer, songwriter and producer Marie Ulven, best known to her fans as girl in red, has had quite the rollercoaster ride in the last 12 months. Hitting hundreds of millions of streams, playing several sold out worldwide shows and garnering widespread critical acclaim is just the tip of the iceberg. She has unleashed the first taste of her upcoming yet–to–be–named debut album with the song “rue.” The track is about escapism that shows Marie in a completely different light, one much darker than ever before. “rue” is the beginning of an exciting new chapter, a track which swirls with ominous depth as Marie’s sound outgrows the confines of the bedroom pop that’s been tagged besides her name previously. Taking musical cues from Robyn’s Body Talk and Lorde’s Melodrama, Marie’s melancholic euphoria turns off all the lights and lets the storm play out in real time as she races through the night searching for catharsis and freedom. The visual for “rue” created by Oslo–based film director Niels Windfeldt is an exceptional piece and is quickly earning millions of views. Watch “rue” HERE and contact Ben Blackburn at firstname.lastname@example.org for all inquiries on behalf of girl in red.
PASSPORT APPROVED™ PLAYLIST – 10/11/2020
“PASSPORT APPROVED” PLAYLIST FOR Sunday, October 11th, 2020: The weekly import show. Heard on more than 50 radio stations on six continents weekly including: Flux FM Berlin, Germany; JioSaavn (worldwide); Radio Doble Nueve, Lima, Peru; WZRH–FM New Orleans, LA; 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); 96.2 ZFM The Netherlands; WAPS–FM “The Summit.FM” Akron–Canton, OH; WKTL–FM Youngstown, OH; 105.5FM XFM Nairobi, Kenya; PUK–FM Johannesburg, South Africa; Rock 96.5FM Zambia; 897 FM Bratislava, Slovakia; WITH “90.1FM” Ithaca, NY; UCFM 87.8FM Australian Capital Territory, Australia; WRUR 88.5FM Rochester, NY; WCRU–FM Hamilton, NY; KZND Anchorage, AK; KQCJ Quad Cities, IL; Allgauhit–FM Bavaria Germany and on The Independent FM (iHeartRadio) in the United States, as well as many others internationally.
Listen to this two hour show by clicking HERE:
GIANT ROOKS – “Heat Up” (AR Entertainment, Germany)
DOWN FOR TOMORROW – “Trouble Prone” (Good Intent, Australia)
TWO YEAR VACATION – “Django” (Cloud Hills, Sweden)
AMY LILLEY – “Formidable” (Unsigned, South Africa)
APRE – “Without Your Love” (Propeller Recordings, UK)
ESTATES – “Sleepless” (Some Great Records, UK)
STEREOTIDE – “Hope” (Unsigned, Germany)
IAMJJ – “Different Kind Of Blues” (Unsigned, Denmark)
HOCKEY DAD – “Germaphobe” (Farmer & The Owl / BMG, Australia)
FOREST BLAKK – “Foolish” (Atlantic Records, Canada)
SEA GIRLS – “All I Want To Hear You Say” (Polydor, UK)
GIRL IN RED – “Rue” (AWAL, Norway)
LARKINS – “TV Dream” (Good Soldier, UK)
GINA BROOKLYN – “No More Hiding” (Unsigned, N. America)
DRY CLEAN ONLY – “Lonely Love” (Unsigned, N. America)
BLACK SATELLITE – “Void” (Unsigned, N. America)
VISTAS – “Stranger” (Retrospect Records, Scotland)
TEMPLES – “Paraphernalia” (ATO Records, UK)
SYCCO – “Dribble” (Future Classic/Wilder Records, Australia)
LEONIDEN – “L.O.V.E.” (Euphorie, Germany)
BLANKS – “Favorite Nightmare” (Unsigned, Holland)
BLACK HONEY – “Beaches” (Fox Five Records, UK)
CHRIS GREIG & THE MERCHANTS – “Glue” (Unsigned, Scotland)
SCHOOL OF X – “Forget Me On The Moon” (Tambourhinoceros, Denmark)
CATHOLIC GUILT – “A Boutique Affair” (Wiretap Records, Australia)
JAMES DEACON – “Reason” (Ditto Music, South Africa)
DARLING BOY – “Air–Conditioned Gypsy” (From Darling Boy Music, UK)
ADÉLAIDE – “Silent Hope” (Unsigned, Germany)
SAAHIL BHARGAVA – “Plug In Baby” (Unsigned, India)
RICH BEESTON – “Coincidences” (Unsigned, Australia)
DEVON – “Trust Issues” (Universal, UK)
HI FRISCO FT. CHARLOTTE SPIRAL – “Headspin” (SO Recordings, UK)
(Check out the Passport Approved Radio “Featured Artists” on the daily profile exclusively on AllAccess.com including APRE, Estates, Temples, Chris Greig & The Merchants and Lovebreakers)