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VIVENDI CONFIRMS UMG IPO ON DUTCH EURONEXT STOCK EXCHANGE


Universal Music Group’s (UMG) parent company, Vivendi, revealed last week that it has confirmed plans for a UMG IPO before the end of the year. The decision to make UMG a public listing has been strongly supported by Vivendi’s institutional shareholders. Over the past year, a consortium led by Tencent has acquired 20% of UMG, based on a €30 billion enterprise value which, according to Chairman of Vivendi’s supervisory board, Yannick Bolloré, and Arnaud de Puyfontaine, Vivendi’s CEO, has “confirmed its attractiveness with strategic investors.”

Vivendi’s Management Board announced plans for the distribution of 60% of UMG’s share capital to Vivendi shareholders which would happen in the form of a special dividend. A UMG holding company which is currently being incorporated in the Netherlands, would see the listing of the shares applied for on the Euronext stock exchange in Amsterdam.

Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman & CEO of UMG, said in a memo to staff, “I couldn’t be prouder: not only is this a validation of our strategy, our teams, and our unprecedented record of success, it’s a natural evolution in the storied history of our company that will enable our entrepreneurial and creative culture to continue to soar.”

Yannick Bolloré and Arnaud de Puyfontaine stated in a memo, “This plan is the result of the joint efforts in recent years by the Vivendi and the Universal Music Group, under the leadership of Sir Lucian Grainge, to further the company’s position as the music industry’s undisputed leader. UMG has strengthened its worldwide leadership by focusing on its creative DNA and uniqueness: talent, both new and established, both local and global. At the same time, UMG has succeeded in leading the massive transformation in consumer adoption of streaming and subscription.”

The statement continued, “UMG would be in a position to take advantage of greatly increased financial flexibility to pursue its dynamic growth and its pioneering role in the music and entertainment industry, to the benefit of artists and fans everywhere.”

According to Vivendi, the initial response to the transaction from the Tencent–led consortium was positive, as they begin looking over the planned listing. On March 29th, a meeting will be called for Vivendi extraordinary shareholders to adjust the company’s by–laws and allow the distribution to move forward.


SONY MUSIC PUBLISHING LAUNCHES WITH NEW GLOBAL BRAND IDENTITY



After 25 years, the Sony Music Publishing name has returned as the publisher has introduced a new brand identity with a redesigned logo and revitalized mission. Under the leadership of Chairman & CEO Jon Platt, the renewal of the Sony Music Publishing name signals an important step in the company’s evolution and further aligns the business with Sony’s leading entertainment brands. The rebrand reflects the identity of Sony, as “A Creative Entertainment Company with a Solid Foundation of Technology.”

The new Sony Music Publishing honors its background as a Sony company and lays the foundation for its future as a songwriter–first, universally inclusive company. The central visual of the new brand identity is a refreshed logo, which is designed as an abstraction of sound waves. Complementing the symbol, the Sony Music Publishing ethos is “every voice matters,” elevating the vision and goals of songwriters.

Jon Platt commented, “Sony Music Publishing has always embraced the power of songwriting to connect cultures and bring people together. Since its inception, Sony Music Publishing has supported the careers of songwriters and continues to defend their rights. Returning to the Sony Music Publishing name reconnects us to our legacy and further unifies our mission and culture with the Sony Corporation. Our new brand embodies a modern vision to be an authentic reflection of the music and songwriters we represent.”

Sony Music Group Chairman, Rob Stringer, added, “By re–energizing the Sony Music Publishing brand, Jon and the company are charting a new course for the business and an exciting path forward for its songwriters and its people. The publishing division’s bold new image also conveys Sony Music Group’s evolution as a future–forward creative entertainment company, adding distinction to our positioning.”

Sony Corporation Chairman, President & CEO Kenichiro Yoshida stated, “Sony Music Publishing’s dynamic new brand conveys the promise of our creative approach and our leadership in the music and entertainment space. Jon and Rob are continuing to advance Sony’s business and strengthen our reputation as a ‘Creative Entertainment Company with a Solid Foundation of Technology’ with artists and songwriters around the globe. As a company that has been and continues to empower songwriters, I strongly believe that its inclusive brand message will lead to bringing people closer together, more than ever.”

Sony/ATV was established in 1995 through a joint venture with Michael Jackson that brought together the original Sony Music Publishing with Jackson’s ATV Music. Jackson had acquired ATV Music, which owned the Northern Songs catalog, in 1985. Northern Songs was home to the rights to all the songs that John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote during their time with The Beatles. In 2016, Sony acquired the Michael Jackson Estate’s 50% share of Sony/ATV making it a wholly–owned Sony company.

In 2007, Sony/ATV acquired Famous Music which included some of the great American film and television catalogs and in 2012 Sony, along with a group of investors, purchased EMI Music Publishing. In 2018, Sony bought out the remaining ownership interests in EMI which cemented Sony/ATV’s status as the world’s leading music publisher.


BIG HIT, YG, UMG AND KISWE COME TOGETHER
FOR GLOBAL LIVE STREAMING PLATFORM



Big Hit Entertainment, YG Entertainment, Universal Music Group (UMG), and Kiswe are joining forces for the launch of a digital live streaming platform on a global scale. it was announced last week by Big Hit that YG and UMG would invest in KBYK Live, a JV that was established with Kiswe last year. KBYK Live officially launched live streaming content platform VenewLive in September. With the equity investment, YG and UMG seek to support the expansion of VenewLive further alongside Big Hit and Kiswe.

With the addition of YG and UMG, VenewLive is expected to secure global acts and high–quality performance contents represented by Big Hit, YG, and UMG, while further expanding the platform by utilizing Kiswe’s technologies including multi–view livestreaming. Driven by Kiswe’s technologies, VenewLive can customize the concert experience to fit the identity and characteristics of each artist while providing innovative and original performance experiences for fans in a uniquely customized, authentic and personalized way.

Streaming stability and high–quality video and audio were demonstrated via BTS’ online concerts, BANG BANG CON The Live and MAP OF THE SOUL ON:E, in June and October respectively. The former generated a peak concurrent audience of 756,000 while the latter was viewed by a total of 993,000 fans worldwide. The shows also offered a variety of interactive and premium features such as multi–view technology, 4K resolution, live chat and synchronized light sticks functions.

KBYK Live CEO John Lee said, “VenewLive has already live–streamed several large–scale performances last year and provided unique immersive fan concert experiences that can be offered through our cutting–edge technologies, including 6–angle multi–views, 4K resolution, and various interactive features.” He added, “Our technology will be the basis for enabling fans to feel closer to artists, and help artists express their energy on a digital stage.”

UMG EVP, Chief Financial Officer & President of Operations Boyd Muir said, “We are delighted to join Big Hit, YG and Kiswe as partners in KBYK as we look to help further evolve the opportunities and live streaming experiences for UMG artists and their fans today, and into the future. This past year has shown that the need for reliable and innovative live streaming has never been greater. VenewLive offers some of the most creative and memorable opportunities for today’s artists to globalize their art and performances, tailored to enhance the community and fan–experience.”


GLOBAL NEWS UPDATES…



Australian singer/songwriter, Matt Corby, and his long–time producer, writer and collaborator, Alex Henriksson, have announced a new JV with Warner Music Australia under the banner of Rainbow Valley Records. The new set–up is inspired by Corby’s Rainbow Valley studios in Northern New South Wales and will look to sign and develop artists of various genres and backgrounds. The new venture marks the first signing by Warner Music Australia’s President, Dan Rosen. Corby’s debut release of “Brother” in 2011 went to No.3 on the ARIA Singles Chart and Triple J’s Hottest 100 Poll, as well as taking an ARIA Award for Song of the Year. His debut album, Telluric, topped the ARIA Albums chart in 2016 and his follow–up full–length in 2018, Rainbow Valley, reached No.4 on the ARIA Albums chart, garnering the J Award for Australian Album of the Year.

Last week, Gibson announced that it has formed a full–scale partnership with Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) in China and Hong Kong. Under the partnership, Gibson will offer tailor–made support for artists, songwriters, and producers in China. First up for 2021 are the popular UMPG songwriting camps and artist events. Gibson has outfitted UMP China’s professional recording studios in Beijing and Shanghai, and UMP China marketing and social media will work closely with Gibson on expanding social media reach through joint promotional social campaigns and artist content launches regionally and globally. UMPG and Gibson are committed to supporting charity campaigns and causes that serve the music community, from forthcoming opportunities with major content sites such as Tencent, TikTok and Bilibili, to promoting respective artists’ charitable efforts globally and regionally throughout Asia.

Warner Latina and Warner Records announced last week the signing of an exclusive distribution deal with Puerto Rican musical star, Myke Towers, and his indie label, Whiteworld Music. The agreement will allow the multi–Platinum artist to tap into Warner’s combined international and domestic A&R and marketing teams to grow and develop his burgeoning career. In his short career, Towers has already become one of the most dynamic and socially relevant artists, songwriters, and performers on the Latin Urban scene. He’s generated millions of fans with both his solo releases and collaborations with Farruko, Anitta, Cardi B, Maluma, Ozuna, Zion & Lennox, Natti Natasha, Anuel AA, Becky G, Bad Bunny, Wisin, Piso 21, Sech, Yandel and Arcangel, among others. In 2020, Towers’ RIAA triple–Platinum album, Easy Money Baby, debuted at No.1 on Billboard’s Top Latin Albums and Latin Rhythm Albums charts, accumulating billions of streams. He has also received multi–Platinum RIAA certifications for a number of his singles. Towers’ social media reach currently exceeds 30 million monthly listeners on Spotify, 6.9 million YouTube subscribers, and more than 6.8 million Instagram followers. He has more tracks (six) on the Spotify Global Top 200 chart than any other Latin act, while holding the No.1 place in 12 countries on YouTube and six countries on Spotify.

Warner Chappell Music Spain has finalized a global publishing deal with singer/songwriter and five–time Latin Grammy winner Jorge Drexler. As an artist, Drexler has released 13 studio albums, in addition to writing for well–known international acts such as Rosario, Shakira and C Tangana. Drexler became the first Uruguayan to garner an Academy Award when his work “Al Otro Lado Del Rio,” was recognized for its inclusion in the 2004 film The Motorcycle Diaries. Additional credits for Drexler include working with Carlinhos Brown, Joaquin Sabina, Ketama, Kevin Johansen, Marlango and Pedro Guerra. Most recently, his collaborations include those with Latin Grammy winners Caetano Veloso, Julieta Venegas, Mon Laferte and Natalia Lafourcade. Drexler’s last album run in 2017 saw him perform over 150 shows in 24 different countries. In 2019, he signed with Sony Music US Latin and is preparing a new album release for this year.

Following his recent global record deal signings with Universal’s Polydor and Interscope labels in the U.K. and U.S., respectively, sea shanty buzz artist Nathan Evans has joined the roster at UTA for worldwide representation. His Wellerman sea shanty and the 220 Kid and Billen Ted remix via Universal continues to grow in popularity globally with the single looking to top the U.K. chart. Evans’ team at the agency will be guided by a collective of agents who will look after all live activity and commercial partnerships.

Songtrust recently revealed promotions for three executives from key departments for the company. Among the elevations are Lisa Robinson who becomes VP of Income Tracking; Anna Bond who is named Head of Creative and Partnerships, a newly created division; and Rob Wetstone who rises to Global Head of Client Relations. This round of appointments comes as Songtrust’s growth for its administration services worldwide continues, now counting clients in over 145 countries.

Following investment raised reaching £6.48 million, MelodyVR has revealed it will be rebranding as Napster, having acquired the brand last year and been at work on integrating their operations. Napster also made its way to the London Stock Exchange’s AIM listing on Friday. The investment, which comes via Swiss corporate finance firm Nice & Green, starts this month and will be used to drive the development and roll–out of a new integrated mobile app. The app will join together content and functionality from both Napster and MelodyVR to deliver a new music platform over the course of the year.

The U.S music and international artist services divisions of Ticketmaster have joined forces to launch a new global music team and roll–out a dedicated livestream platform worldwide. Under the banner of Ticketmaster Livestream, the service will offer a global platform to artists for their virtual events, tapping into the expertise, marketing and reach of Ticketmaster on a worldwide scale. Current EVP of Global Music, David Marcus, will lead the team, working alongside Sr. VP of Artist Services Sam Isles for ticketing solutions. The streaming–focused ticketing offering is operational in more than 10 languages and 135 currencies and has already sold tickets for virtual events to fans in over 180 countries.

Spotify has unveiled details for a new songwriter, publisher and producer hub under the banner of Noteable. The new set–up brings Spotify’s offering for the songwriting and production community into a central platform including a new website and social media profiles which seek to support collaboration. Additionally, Notable will feature a newsletter titled The Beat Drop. The platform will include information from Spotify Publishing Analytics, Songwriter Pages, Songwriters Hub and Spotify For Artists, aggregating current resources in addition to delivering new offerings.

A new video streaming platform is entering the arena as British startup Multiview Media has rolled–out its multi–camera angle offering, allowing for the streaming of historic video content or livestream performances in the format. The technology allows fans to choose alternative camera angles while viewing concerts, including an on–stage perspective as well as being able to focus on specific artists or band members. Multiview Media’s technology also provides a new revenue stream with artists and rights holders able to present new live shows or past content in a new format and tapping into pay–per–view, sponsorship opportunities or new, repackaged box sets. In addition to capturing livestreams, and the eventual return of live events, Multiview Media can work with an artist or rights–holder to revisit archive video material to be reformatted. Alongside its launch, Multiview Media has also unveiled a partnership with JBTV, America’s longest–running music TV program for new artists. JBTV will open up its archives with Multiview Media collaborating and using its platform to bring the content to homes, smartphones and tablets. The first JBTV event powered by Multiview Media is JBTV’s Revolution Television Virtual Music Festival, which took place this past weekend, and featuring The Smashing Pumpkins, Fall Out Boy, Filter, Atlas Genius, The Joy Formidable and Failure as well as others.

Primary Wave Music has welcomed Chynna Phillips and Carnie Wilson to their catalog of songwriters in a deal that sees the music publisher acquiring the copyrights and income interests in the music publishing catalog of Phillips, and Wilson’s writer’s share for her catalog of music, as well as master royalties for both songwriters. The acquisition encompasses many hits written by Phillips and Wilson as members of Wilson Phillips including “You’re in Love,” “Release Me,” and their No.1 “Hold On.” The song was the first single off the group’s Grammy–nominated debut album, Wilson Phillips, which has sold over ten million copies worldwide. Released in 1990, “Hold On” topped the Billboard Hot 100 and was the most successful single that year, garnering the Billboard Music Award for Hot 100 Single and a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Performance. The trio had two additional No.1 singles with “Release Me” and “You’re in Love,” which was also nominated for a Grammy. The deals terms include name and likeness for both Carnie and Chynna and will now give both access to Primary Wave’s marketing and publishing infrastructure, which includes digital strategy, licensing, synch opportunities, and film & TV production.

Youth–centric music streaming platform, Audiomack, announced last week that it has finalized licensing agreements with Universal Music Group (UMG) and Sony Music Entertainment (SME). In 2019, the service also reached a licensing agreement with Warner Music Group (WMG). Since rolling out in 2012, Audiomack has played a role in breaking acts such as Roddy Ricch and Rod Wave while debuting exclusive releases from Nicki Minaj, Eminem and Chance the Rapper. On the African continent, Audiomack is a major competitor having recently reached No.1 on Apple’s App Store in the music category in Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Senegal and Kenya. It has also supported the international success of African artists including Omah Lay and Davido. Audiomack’s 2021 plans include continued production of its video series’ Trap Symphony, Fine Tuned and Bless The Booth while building upon written content for its Audiomack World editorial division. Audiomack revealed in December that it had reached 1.5 billion plays and 15 million users monthly.

Australian live entertainment firm, TEG, has recently acquired Sydney–based live event specialist Handsome Tours. Handsome is the tour and events promoter for the Inertia Group of Companies, led by Ashley Sellers, Colin Daniels and Mat Everett. TEG takes a majority stake in the event company which specializes in breaking alt–pop, indie rock and hip–hop acts. Handsome has toured the likes of Stormzy, Bon Iver, The xx, Phoebe Bridgers, Freddie Gibbs, Middle Kids, The War On Drugs and others. In 2018, Handsome produced Gang Of YouthsSay Yes To Life tour and broke venue records by selling 50,000 tickets nationwide. The promoter was also responsible for 2020’s Down To Earth – A Bushfire and Climate Fundraiser at Sidney Myer Music Bowl which raised over $1.4 million for bushfire relief. TEG is involved across ticketing, live entertainment and technology, with interests including Ticketek, TEG Live, Qudos Bank Arena, Eventopia, TEG Dainty, the U.K.’s MJR Group and Melbourne–based concert promoter, Van Egmond Group. Handsome Tours’ Mark Dodds will maintain his role as the company’s Managing Director, and Colin Daniels will take on Executive Director in addition to his role as Managing Director at Inertia Music/[PIAS] Australia with both staying on as partners in the venture. Handsome’s founder members Sellers, Everett and Justin Cosby will exit after the acquisition is finalized with TEG CEO, Geoff Jones, and CFO, Sandra Rouse, joining the board of Handsome.

It was announced last week by peermusic President, Kathy Spanberger, and Sr. VP, Film & Television, Carter Armstrong, that the publisher has finalized an exclusive global publishing deal with musical theater composing duo Douglas Lyons and Ethan Pakchar. The pair count a number of existing stage and screen projects including Five Points alongside Hamilton Tony–winner Andy Blankebeuhler. According to an official press release, the deal covers all future works in addition to a portion of the team’s catalog, including musicals Beau and Lyons’ Polkadots.

Sentric Music Group has signed singer/songwriter Danny Dearden to its Black Rock division, while adding Shino Parker to the company as Creative Manager to Sentric Electronic. The two moves mark an expansion of Sentric’s vocal and songwriting talent, complimenting the company’s existing roster of writers, producers and labels within the genre. Dearden has over 15 million streams on Spotify, with his monthly listeners reaching 600,000 in 2020. He is well–known for collaborations with the likes of Mark Villa, Going Deeper, Aexcit, Erlandsson, Dario G and Bobby Harvey. His second collaboration with French producer Michael Calfan, “Could Be With You,” co–written with Kelli–Leigh, has almost topped 8 million Spotify streams. The track has surpassed Dearden’s first collaboration with Calfan, “It’s Wrong,” which has over 3 million streams to–date. Dearden also co–wrote “What You Got Now,” a single from Stanton Warriors’ No.1 album Rise. Parker, who joins Sentric as Creative Manager, is Owner and Director of artist management firm motion, and a Founding Member of the Association for Electronic Music’s Diversity & Inclusion working group. She has over 15 years of experience in managing artists, running events, working with brands and product marketing including time at AFEM, American Express, Boomtown, The Great Escape, Brighton Music Conference, AWAL and Spotify. At Sentric, Parker will facilitate collaborations between the publisher’s electronic music producers and the group’s singer/songwriter talent. Parker has also devised and developed Sentric’s first electronic songwriting camps with a view to creating music for release, bespoke synch and musical development briefs.

The international artist services team for CD Baby is growing on the African continent with the addition of veteran music business manager and advocate for independent music, Sakhele Mzalazala. Mzalazala, who marks the company’s first hire in Africa, reports to Heli Del Moral, VP of International Development. Mzalazala is tasked with expanding CD Baby’s footprint in South Africa, as well as other Southern Africa territories such as Lesotho, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Swaziland and Namibia. Based in Johannesburg, Mzalazala will take the lead on strategic partnerships locally and internationally, fostering relationships with young and established artists, as well as developing and executing initiatives to build visibility and adoption of CD Baby services in the region. With over two decades of industry experience, Mzalazala has spent time with Yourself Management, Xhentsa and Koloni, working with acts Mahlatse Vokal and Lisa Good, and leading the publishing team for South African label Mathaland/Ghetto Ruff. Having started out as an artist himself, Mzalazala is well–known for his support of indie artists and their work including Zonke Dikana’s double Platinum Ina Ethe, and the late Sfiso Ncwane’s multi–award–winning Gospel full–length, Bayede Baba, as well as many others. Mzalazala joins the CD Baby international team which now counts 22 staffers, active across Europe, North America, South America, East Asia and South Asia.

A new ticketing partnership has been finalized between Dice and French promoter Super! for a multi–year agreement will see the entire Super! portfolio of events, such as livestream events and Pitchfork Music Festival Paris, tapping into the Dice platform. Among the Super! roster are acts such as The xx, Disclosure, Bon Iver, Jungle, Bicep, Caribou and others. Super! and Dice will work collectively across other projects including a series of monthly live shows under the banner of Theorem, geared toward spotlighting new global hip–hop and R&B talent. Scheduled for a fall launch, shows for the series will make their way to venues across Paris. Additionally, Super! is rolling–out an event this year called Spiritus Sancti, bringing a collection of live shows and collaborations to Paris’ Saint–Eustache Church twice monthly, filmed and streamed by Brut.

Austrian music publishing company, Schedler Music, has launched a Neighboring Rights Agency for GSA. The new agency seeks to offer its services in the area of neighbouring rights to an expanded group of interested parties for collecting neighbouring rights income from the GSA area with Schedler Music having already been supporting artists and label partners in the neighbouring rights arena for several years. Accordingly, more and more well–known artists, producers and labels are approaching Schedler with concerns about the income collection at the societies (GVL in Germany, LSG in Austria and Swissperform in Switzerland).

Beatsource, the Beatport/DJ City JV which services open–format DJs, has confirmed deals with Empire and Create Music Group for the creation of fully–licensed DJ edits of popular works from their catalogs. The exclusive edits hit the platform this week through Beatsource LINK, the streaming offering rolled out by the company early last year. Under the agreements, Empire and Create Music have put together extended edits of tracks from the likes of Fat Joe, Rich The Kid, Busta Rhymes, Anderson .Paak, Robin Thicke, DJ Chose, Funkmaster Flex, Tory Lanez and the Insomniac Records catalog, with additional works forthcoming. While extended edits have been available in the past through “record pools” as a promo tool for DJs and labels, the new deal sees labels now able to fully monetize the extended versions under existing licensing agreements, while providing them further control over approvals and generating more robust data on usage. In a release, Beatsource and Beatport also revealed that they are currently in talks with major labels to provide their catalogs as fully approved and licensed DJ edits by April.

BSE Global has named veteran industry executive Laurie Jacoby as the new EVP, Chief Entertainment Officer for the firm, whose portfolio counts the Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center as well as management support of the New York Liberty. In her new role, Jacoby will assume oversight of programming and marketing for Barclays Center, including concert, non–tenant sporting event, family show and award show bookings. Additionally, she will be tasked with the development of other premier live events at the venue. Jacoby comes to BSE having served as Sr. VP of Concerts and Entertainment at Madison Square Garden Entertainment. Her work with BSE Global will commence March 1st and she will report directly to CEO, John Abbamondi.

AIM (The Association of Independent Music) has announced Womxn In CTRL Founder, Nadia Khan, as its new chair. Khan assumes the role following the departure of Peter Quicke, Co–CEO of Ninja Tune. With over two decades of industry experience, Khan is a female entrepreneur that has guided numerous record labels to Top 20 success independently, with her own label imprint, CTRL Records, focused on bringing female talent to the forefront with releases from the likes of Lady Lykez, Laughta and Lisa Mercedez. A champion for diversity, equity and inclusion, Khan’s work on amplifying gender parity and representation has been widely recognized. Khan has been on the AIM board since 2017, with both Dench Records and CTRL Records. She launched Womxn In CTRL last year as a vehicle to empower and bring together women and minority genders industry wide, with the platform counting 2000 members as it continues to grow.

Soul music icon and founding member of The Supremes, Mary Wilson, passed away suddenly last week at her home in Las Vegas at the age of 76. Wilson stood as The Supremes’ longest standing member with the group garnering 12 No.1 singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, which remains the record for the most No.1s from an American group. Of those No.1s, five were consecutive with “Where Did Our Love Go,” “Baby Love,” “Come See About Me,” “Stop! In the Name of Love” and “Back in My Arms Again.” The group of 15–year–olds first came together in Detroit in 1959 as The Primettes and transcended the role of performers to become immensely important figures for breaking down the social, racial, and gender barriers at the time. Wilson remained with The Supremes until they parted ways in 1977 following the release of their final album Mary, Scherrie & Susaye in 1976. She continued to work as a solo act and even recently hinted at a new full–length for release this year.

Another significant loss to the music community came last week with the passing of regarded jazz pianist Chick Corea. Corea succumbed to a recently diagnosed, rare form of cancer. He was 79–years–old. The Massachusetts–born artist started out playing with other musicians before he released his debut full–length, Tones for Joan’s Bones, in 1966. As a result of the style of electric piano playing he pioneered, Corea went on to play with Miles Davis’ band in 1970 and during the same decade, put together the band Return to Forever. With his first Grammy nomination in 1973, Corea’s over five–decade–long career saw him winning 23 awards from 67 nominations, making him No.8 on the list of all–time winners and No.6 for male artists.

On the executive side of the industry, widely–respected former Warner Bros. Records Chairman & CEO Russ Thyret, and manager Larry Robins both passed away recently at the ages of 76 and 75, respectively. Thyret, who spent three decades at Warner Bros. Records as the sole label he worked for, played a key role in bringing Prince to the label in the 70s. He made his way through positions in the sales, marketing and promotions teams before assuming his Chairman & CEO role in 1995, holding the post until 2001. Thyret’s career began managing an indie retail store on Los Angeles’ Sunset Strip before he joined WEA Corporation in 1971 as a field sales representative in the company’s LA office. At Warner Bros. Records, Thyret helped elevate the careers of artists such as Fleetwood Mac, James Taylor, R.E.M., Depeche Mode and Madonna, among others. Robins, whose career spanned 50 years, managed the likes of Natalie Cole, Peter, Paul and Mary and George Wallace and more recently, served as a producer for the upcoming Netflix series Sex/Life, which he helped set–up with his Oscar–winning nephew, producer J. Miles Dale. Robins came to Los Angeles in 1969 from Toronto. One of his first jobs was in production for CBSThe Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour. Other music acts he managed included Delaney & Bonnie and Bill Medley, as well as actors Cree Summer and Tamara Taylor, and voice–over talent from kids shows including Animaniacs, Rugrats and Clifford the Big Red Dog. Robins passed away late last month following a battle with multiple myeloma.


IN THE SPOTLIGHT: Jobst Neermann, Jason Iley, Ben Adelson, Sander van Maarschalkerweerd, Peter Bittenbender, Ron Perry, Shane Tobin, Amos Newman, Nick Burgess, Dave Jordan, Brandon Young, Reynold D’Silva, Vikram Mehra, Jenny Ring and Mary Ramos.


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. Our parents have always told us to take care of things – especially our health and expensive items. Click HERE for a collection of mishaps that are not very good for your health or bank account to say the least!


A&R WORLDWIDE’S "ARTIST OF THE WEEK"– SLIDE



Swedish duo Slide introduced themselves in 2019 with their breakthrough debut EP Into Happiness, a charming collection of grunge–infused anthems melded with intelligent synth–soaked pop and hip–hop aesthetics. Members Albin and Simon came together to form the Stockholm–based two–piece based on their love and appreciation of The Strokes, Nirvana and Red Hot Chili Peppers. Since the release of the EP, they have racked–up thousands of Spotify streams and earned substantial early worldwide radio airplay from a number of stations, including KROQ Los Angeles, KNDD Seattle, KNRK Portland, Swedish P3, Radio France, Austrian FM4, Dutch 3FM, German SWR 3, Radio 1 Mumbai India, Xfm Nairobi Kenya and FluxFM Berlin, Germany – establishing Slide as their generation’s more interesting bands, giving a modern and new perspective to the classic genre. Slide released their Things I Tell Myself EP (If Music Could Talk/AWAL) last summer, which was compared to the likes of BROCKHAMPTON, Dominic Fike and Post Malone. The hard–working duo return with one of their strongest singles to date, “Floating” (2021 Slip N Slide Mix). According to the band, the upbeat earworm is about losing yourself in thought and possibly losing yourself in love, too. Listen to the forthcoming single “Floating” HERE. For all inquiries, contact info@anrworldwide.com.


A&R WORLDWIDE’S "VIDEO OF THE WEEK" – EAU ROUGE

Berlin–based trio Eau Rouge have performed around the world, including major festivals such as Lollapalooza Berlin, SXSW and The Great Escape, as well as tours in Sweden, Switzerland, Austria and the United States. The band has been picked up by several major brands over the years, including Red Bull, Germany’s Next Top Model, Citröen as well as features in several Netflix and TV shows. Jonas, Bo and Magnus have also collected over seven million streams across platforms, and performed alongside the likes of The National, Warpaint, Blood Red Shoes, Crystal Fighters and SBTRKT. Collectively, they’re influenced by the stylings of Arctic Monkeys, Phoenix and Arcade Fire as their own sound sits a bit closer to the modern creations of Tame Impala, MGMT and Everything Everything. Their latest single and visual, “I Know That You Know” embraces the knowledge of the inevitable ending of a relationship that it’s simply just not going to work out, and showers it with light hearted indie styles and cheerful singing. The video, directed by Felix Keltsch, comes alive with multi–tonal editing and lyrical overlays. Experience the video for “I Know That You Know” HERE and contact info@eaurouge–music.com for all inquiries regarding Eau Rouge.


PASSPORT APPROVED™ PLAYLIST – 2/14/2021



“PASSPORT APPROVED” PLAYLIST FOR Sunday, February 14th, 2021: 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; Indie Xfm Los Angeles 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:

DED RABBIT – “Gotta Get Outta This Place” (Unsigned, Scotland)
JEREMY LOOPS – “Til I Found You” (Universal, South Africa)
OSCAR LANG – “Something Has Changed” (Dirty Hit, UK)
CATHOLIC GUILT – “Life In Three Part Harmony” (Wiretap Records, Australia)
LINN KOCH–EMMERY – “Hologram Love” (Welfare Sounds, Sweden)
TEN TONNES – “Girl Are You Lonely Like Me” (Unsigned, UK)
THE VICES – “Boy” (Mattan Records, Holland)
JACOB BROWNE – “Upside Down” (Unsigned, UK)
TWO YEAR VACATION – “Moving On From Yesterday’” (Cloud Hills, Sweden)
THE HARA – “Black Soul Ceremony” (Sign Of The Times, UK)
DOTAN – “There Will Be A Way” (7 Layers, Holland)
SAM JOHNSON – “Shoulder To Cry On” (Universal Music, UK)
NINA CHUBA – “Babylon Fall” (Mag Musik, Germany)
HAUSKEY – “Silver Lining” (Unsigned, Australia)
MELLAH – “Hitchin’” (Columbia Records, UK)
MY LIFE AS ALI THOMAS – “Rinn’” (Warner Music, Thailand)
THE SWOONS – “If It Keeps You Up At Night” (Unsigned, N. America)
THE CLOCKWORKS – “Enough Is Never Enough’” (Creation 23, UK)
EAU ROUGE – “I Know That You Know” (Riptide Records, Germany)
GOLD MEMBER – “Blue Coma’” (Sureshaker, Australia)
ALLDAY – “After All This Time” (Teamtrick, Australia)
JUPITER’S BEARD – “Mr. Billionaire” (Unsigned, UK)
RAZZ – “1969 – Conrad” (Unsigned, Germany)
LOVEBREAKERS – “Family Man” (Little Rocket / Sabbath City, UK)
LAURA HYDE – “Coca Cola” (Unsigned, Australia)
TRIBE FRIDAY – “Loosie” (Unsigned, Sweden)
PACIFIC – “State Of Mind” (Unsigned, UK)
SEA GIRLS – “This Is The End” (Polydor, UK)
CRUCCHI GANG – “La La La io non ti amo non mi ami Aha Aha Aha” (Universal, Germany)
THE PALE WHITE – “Glue” (Unsigned, UK)
CONNELL CRUISE – “Take Me To The River” (David Gesham Records, South Africa)
THE LULU RAES – “Not For The Weekend” (Sony Music, Australia)
ADÉLAIDE – “Paintings In The Sky’” (Unsiged, Germany)
MIDDLE KIDS – “R U 4 Me?” (EMI, Australia)

(Check out the Passport Approved Radio “Featured Artists” on the daily profile exclusively on AllAccess.com including Birds Of Tokyo, Azure Ryder, High Tropics, Linn Koch–Emmery and The Swoons)