Author: Eamonn Forde

Music recording app Audiobridge launches equity crowdfunder

Audiobridge is one of the startups trying to do clever things in the cloud with the music recording process. Its iOS app enables musicians to work remotely on multi-track projects, recording and uploading tracks from their smartphones to sync them across the devices of their collaborators.
The company is also raising money through an equity crowdfunding campaign, hoping to raise between $50k and $250k. The minimum investment is $100, although richer investors who chip in at least $50k will get better terms.
The campaign follows Audiobridge’s initial funding round of $500k in September 2018, as it released the initial version of its app. Currently, the app is free, but it plans to add paid features in the coming months.
The post Music recording app Audiobridge launches equity crowdfunder appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Virtual re-Ellie-ty: Ellie Goulding makes XR music videos

British artist Ellie Goulding has a pair of new videos out for her new tracks ‘Brightest Blue’ and ‘New Heights’.
They’re the result of a partnership between label Polydor and Vevo for the latter’s ‘Official Live Performance’ series, but what’s notable is their use of ‘XR’ technology, which blends camera footage with computer-generated content in real-time.
For ‘Brightest Blue’ it begins by adding lighting effects (blue, of course) as Goulding sings and then stage dressing is added and it ends with the camera pulling back to reveal the soundstage it was filmed on and the musicians performing live that were previously out of shot. ‘New Heights’ does something similar but focuses on an evolving backdrop instead.
The post Virtual re-Ellie-ty: Ellie Goulding makes XR music videos appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Elon Musk wants to stream music straight to people’s brains

Who needs expensive Bluetooth headphones or fiddly earbuds that get lost somewhere between the sofa and the shops? Not Elon Musk, that’s for sure.
His latest startup, Neuralink, is reportedly working on a brain/computer interface that can stream music straight to your grey matter.
“If you’ve solved hard problems with phones / wearables (sealing, signal processing, inductive charging, power mgmt, etc), please consider working at engineering@neuralink.com,” tweeted Musk this weekend.
The post Elon Musk wants to stream music straight to people’s brains appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Facebook signs deal with Indian collecting society IPRS

The Indian Performing Rights Society (IPRS) has signed a deal with Facebook for use of the repertoire it represents in videos, music stickers and stories on the platform.
The deal also covers similar usage on Instagram, with IPRS saying it “will cover licensing and royalties whenever music represented by the IPRS is used on Facebook and Instagram”.
News of the deal comes shortly after Instagram launched its new ‘Reels’ feature in India. It’s the app’s equivalent of TikTok, enabling people to create 15-second videos with music soundtracks.
The post Facebook signs deal with Indian collecting society IPRS appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music bags exclusive deal for Instagram Verzuz battles

One of the hits of the Covid-19 lockdown has been the Verzuz battles on Instagram, where high-profile artists go head-to-head for… well, they’re less battles and more mutual love-ins, exchanging their hits in an atmosphere of respect.
Anyway, they’ve been hugely popular on Instagram Live: Jill Scott and Erykah Badu attracted more than 740,000 viewers at the peak of their battle in May. Now Apple Music has swooped in to sign an exclusive deal for the franchise.
From now on, each battle will be simulcast live on Apple Music and Beats 1 as it goes out on the Verzuz Instagram Live channel. Apple Music will also have the battles available on-demand after the initial broadcast.
The post Apple Music bags exclusive deal for Instagram Verzuz battles appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

SoundCloud moves into instant audio mastering services

SoundCloud’s evolution from a streaming service to a suite of distribution and related tools for artists continues. The company now has a ‘Mastering on SoundCloud’ service, powered by Dolby.
“As the last step of your upload flow, you can make any track release-ready in minutes for one low cost per master,” promises SoundCloud. “Pick from a custom suite of mastering styles that sculpt your song’s tonal balance and dynamic range while preserving its original intent.”
The new tool costs $4.99 per track, although artists subscribing to SoundCloud’s Pro Unlimited tier will get three masters a month for free, and a discounted price of $3.99 for extra tracks.
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Source: Music ally

‘Before the MP3 the music industry thought it sold music…’

“The MP3 file has become the URL,” said Spotify boss Daniel Ek 10 years ago, in 2010. Yet the MP3 lives on: it’s actually celebrating its silver (25th) anniversary today, with the file extension name .mp3 having been minted on 14 July 1995 by the Fraunhofer Society.
Within five years, the MP3 would be turning the record business on its head through its use by filesharing platforms like Napster, and (eventually) by legal music download stores.
This morning, British songwriters body The Ivors Academy and the Musicians’ Union are using the anniversary to remind the industry of their ‘Keep Music Alive’ campaign to reform the streaming ecosystem for artists.
The post ‘Before the MP3 the music industry thought it sold music…’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

How has the DNA of a music hit changed since the year 2000?

Midia Research’s latest blog post digs in to how the structure of music hits has changed over the past 20 years, albeit with a limited dataset: the Billboard top 10 in July 2000 and July 2020. It offers four main conclusions.
First, songs are shorter overall: a 16% decrease from an average length of four minutes and 22 seconds in 2000 to three minutes and 42 seconds now.
Second, hip-hop accounts for 60% of the top 10 in the 2020 chart, while the 2000 rankings were split evenly between pop, rock and R’n’B.
The post How has the DNA of a music hit changed since the year 2000? appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Mike Singer single promoted with stream-to-unlock campaign

Warner Music Central Europe has created a stream-to-unlock initiative to push ‘100Tausend’ (‘100 Thousand’), the new single from German artist Mike Singer which is released on 17 July.
Users going to a page on his website pick their streaming service of choice and then they have to play ‘Paranoid’ (the first single from the new album) as well as pre-save or pre-add ‘100Tausend’.
As more fans do this, it will trigger an incremental reveal of the lyrics and when the campaign reaches 100% of its target, a snippet of ‘100Tausend’ can be heard before its full release at the end of the week.
The post Mike Singer single promoted with stream-to-unlock campaign appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music launches At Home With Sessions with Arlo Parks

Spotify Singles has been combining artists’ re-recordings of their own songs with covers of other musicians’ tracks for some time.
Now Apple Music is getting in on the idea with its new ‘At Home With Sessions’. Emerging British artist Arlo Parks is the first to feature, reworking three of her own tracks.
As the name makes clear, this is starting as a Covid-19-era series, with artists producing the recordings from their homes.
The post Apple Music launches At Home With Sessions with Arlo Parks appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ashnikko’s new track has a Beats by Dre and TikTok partnership

Artist Ashnikko’s breakthrough last year was fuelled by TikTok, when her track ‘Stupid’ went viral. Now, for her new track ‘Daisy’ she is prioritising the platform – this time with Apple’s music hardware brand Beats by Dre on board as a marketing partner.
That means a music video with prominent placement for the new PowerbeatsPro headphones, themed around their four colours.
TikTok comes in with a four-week #BeatsDaisyChallenge that starts on Saturday (11 July). In fact, it’s four challenges, one each week based on the four colours, with Ashnikko and Beats to choose the best entries to feature in the final version of the ‘Daisy’ music video.
The post Ashnikko’s new track has a Beats by Dre and TikTok partnership appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s Discover Weekly has driven 2.3bn hours of listening

Spotify’s algorithm tried to make us stream R3HAB and we said… yes, yes, yes!
The streaming service is celebrating the fifth birthday of its algo-personalised ‘Discover Weekly’ playlist by revealing that Moroccan-Dutch DJ R3HAB is the ‘most discovered’ artist from the playlist in the most countries – 16 – since its launch in 2015.
There’s also a big number: Spotify listeners streamed more than 2.3bn hours from their ‘Discover Weekly’ playlists between July 2015 and June 2020.
As an artist, R3HAB predates the playlist by some time, since he’s been releasing tracks since 2008. However, his two studio albums came out in 2017 and 2018, so ‘Discover Weekly’ has clearly played a role in his rise.
The post Spotify’s Discover Weekly has driven 2.3bn hours of listening appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s new site creates personalised workout playlists

Spotify’s latest campaign to create personalised playlists for listeners is called Soundtrack Your Workout, aimed at people who are exercising.
On the new website, they choose a workout length (from 15 minutes to two hours); choose to include only music, only podcasts, or a mix of the two; explain what exercise they’re doing (yoga, running, biking, cardio, dance, weightlifting, walking/meditation or barre/pilates); and say if they’re exercising alone or with others (partners, friends, kids, erm, pets).
The post Spotify’s new site creates personalised workout playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Audiomack partners with ACRCloud on content-filtering system

In November 2018, YouTube said it had spent $100m developing its Content ID system for detecting copyrighted music in uploads and giving rightsholders options to remove, leave or monetise those videos.
That level of investment is beyond many music startups, but there are partnerships to be done. The latest example is with US streaming service Audiomack, which is working with ACRCloud’s copyright protection technology.
The tech uses audio fingerprinting to scan all newly uploaded music to Audiomack, with the press release claiming that it currently gets “thousands” of user-generated uploads to its platform every day.
The post Audiomack partners with ACRCloud on content-filtering system appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Recording Academy teams with racial justice org Color of Change

US industry body the Recording Academy has announced a partnership with racial justice organisation Color of Change, including making a $1m donation to it.
The pair will be working together on initiatives including creating a Black music advisory group for the Academy; a membership campaign to sign up more Black voting members; and an industry-wide diversity and inclusion summit.
Color of Change will also be advising the Academy on its plans to launch an industry ‘Inclusion Rider and Toolkit’ later this year.
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Source: Music ally

YouTube launches new analytics features for music artists

YouTube had analytics that musicians were using long before Spotify for Artists, Apple Music for Artists, Amazon Music for Artists and the rest.
Along with SoundCloud, it was an early tool for artists to see (for example) where their fan hotspots were around the world, and plan tours accordingly. YouTube’s analytics weren’t specifically for musicians though: they were a generalist data tool for all YouTubers and channel owners.
Now YouTube is doubling down on its analytics  for musicians with what it’s calling ‘New YouTube Analytics for Artists’, promising that it’ll provide them with “the most comprehensive and complete view of their audience, global reach and performance across YouTube”.
It’s part of the YouTube Studio toolset, but only musicians with their own ‘Official Artist Channel’ will be able to use it.
The post YouTube launches new analytics features for music artists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BTS Army (and Cape Verde) help K-Pop stars break iTunes record

Is there any country in the world where BTS aren’t big? They’re certainly big in Cape Verde: their ‘Black Swan’ track has gone to number one in the country’s iTunes chart.
Why are we writing about this? Well, this was the 103rd country where the track had topped the iTunes rankings, breaking Adele’s record of 102 countries with ‘Hello’.
FYI: Cape Verde is made up of 10 volcanic islands in the central Atlantic Ocean, with a population of just over half a million people.
The post BTS Army (and Cape Verde) help K-Pop stars break iTunes record appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BandLab debuts a new ‘Albums’ tool for self-releasing artists

BandLab is one of the most popular and longest-established online tools for creating music and collaborating with other musicians, although its parent company has diversified into physical instruments and music media – including buying magazines like NME and Uncut.
Now it’s getting into digital distribution for independent artists, with a tool called ‘BandLab Albums’ and the promise of “no commissions, no joining fees”. Musicians can also create bonus content including demo tracks, songwriting notes and behind-the-scenes videos.
Note, this isn’t (yet) about making albums available on external streaming services and download stores, but rather through BandLab itself – musicians can make them available for free, or create a tip jar for payment with whatever minimum amount they want to set.
The post BandLab debuts a new ‘Albums’ tool for self-releasing artists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Weav Music adds voice coaching to adaptive music running app

We’ve been writing about startup Weav Music since 2017, when the company co-founded by Google Maps co-creator Lars Rasmussen signed its first major label deals.
Its first app, Weav Run, was an app for runners with ‘adaptive’ music that changed according to their pace, but not just through speeding it up and time-stretching the tracks. Now Rasmussen and co-founder Elomida Visviki have announced the app’s latest move: the addition of voice coaching, which is also adaptive to the runner’s pace and progress.
There’s a video demo of how it works here.
The post Weav Music adds voice coaching to adaptive music running app appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Delic launches music collaboration / rights management platform

We’ve written about Delic before: it’s a service for musicians and rightsholders to manage, share and collaborate on music, which launched in beta last year, then raised £250k of funding early this year to prepare for launch.
That launch happened yesterday. Musicians can sign up; collaborate with one another and manage those projects, including sharing the files; and also use its tools for making money from their music.
It also has plans to add more features around the management of rights (blockchain ledger registrations included) as well as sync licensing, digital distribution and publishing services.
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Source: Music ally

Landr’s latest expansion is ‘Pro Network’ digital marketplace

Landr began life as a startup with an AI-powered tool to automate the mastering of recordings, before expanding into distribution and promotion. It also raised a $26m funding round in July 2019 for more expansion.
Part of that growth involves the launch of ‘Landr Pro Network’, which the company describes as a “digital marketplace that enables professionals to market and manage every facet of their businesses remotely”.
That means people working in the music industry can create profiles showing off their skills and experience, so that people can hire them for projects. Landr will also provide tools to manage these collaborations, including contracts, billing and video chat.
The post Landr’s latest expansion is ‘Pro Network’ digital marketplace appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify releases Marquee stats including 20% conversion rate

‘Marquee’ is Spotify’s tool that pops up in its mobile app suggesting that people listen to a new release by an artist that they like. In the US and Canada, it’s currently being beta-tested as a paid advertising slot.
Now Spotify has launched a new web page promoting the feature itself, including some stats on those initial tests. The company is claiming a 20% conversion rate, for example: 20% of Spotify users who see a marquee go on to stream the release it’s promoting within two weeks.
It also cites a study of 30 campaigns to show an “average lift in saved and playlisted tracks” of 2.2x for listeners who saw a marquee. And those saves and playlists pay off, says Spotify: “Our research shows that saves and playlists adds correlate with a 250% increase in streaming of that artist six months later.”
There’s also a case study of how Chicago duo Drama used the marquee feature: 25% of listeners who saw their ad saved or playlisted at least one track from the album, streaming an average of 17 tracks by the group – “much more than the entire album”. 
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Source: Music ally

Deezer gets promotional push on Huawei’s AppGallery

Chinese technology firm Huawei is a controversial company in the west, but it is still hugely successful globally, having shipped 240m smartphones in 2019 alone.
A trade ban with the US has meant the company can’t preload Google’s Android apps on those handsets however, so Huawei has developed its own ‘AppGallery’ app store as an alternative to the Google Play store.
Now streaming service Deezer is getting a promotional push on AppGallery by being designated a ‘Hero Status’ app. Deezer is also offering Huawei’s customers a three-month free trial of its premium tier in Europe, Russia and Turkey.
Note: Huawei also has its own streaming music service, Huawei Music, and in April claimed that it had more than 160 million monthly active users, as it launched in 16 new countries in Europe.
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Source: Music ally

Suicide Silence and Bandsintown launch geofenced virtual tour

Livestream music concerts can air globally, but that doesn’t mean they have to. We’re seeing a growing number of artists experiment with geofenced online concerts, which can only be viewed by fans in a particular part of the world – sometimes as part of virtual ‘tours’ with a string of performances.
Now deathcore band Suicide Silence are partnering with Bandsintown on what they’re calling “the most extensive geofenced virtual tour experience to date”. That means a series of concerts between 2 July and 30 July, each one a 90-minute performance filmed with multiple cameras, geofenced for 39 cities.
Video Q&As, skits and chatrooms for song requests are all promised as part of the experience. There’ll be exclusive merchandise for sale, and the shows will be ticketed: the details are also geofenced, but so far we’ve checked London and Bangalore, and both will see tickets priced at $10.
The tour will also take in Mexico City, Bangkok, Jakarta, Tokyo and Moscow as well as major cities in Europe and North America. It’s set to be one of the most ambitious and involved livestreams we’ve seen yet under lockdown.
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Source: Music ally

DJ Regard gets his own Regard Runner promotional game

Music Ally last covered Kosovo-based artist DJ Regard in September 2019, when his ‘Ride It’ track became a TikTok-assisted viral hit. Now the artist, signed to Ministry of Sound, is getting his own casual game, Regard Runner, which can be played on mobile devices and computers alike.
Ministry commissioned digital agency The Creative Corporation to make the game, which is in the ‘endless runner’ genre. Players have to keep DJ Regard running (hence the title) across platforms that fall away as he goes, jumping over gaps and other obstacles.
Fans can also play tracks by the artist as you play if they sign in using Spotify, which like other marketing campaigns of this kind, gives Ministry of Sound and parent company Sony Music access to data including their email address, music recently played and saved to their library, top artists and playlists they have made and followed.
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Source: Music ally

Spotify steps up podcast monetisation with in-app offers

Spotify is trying something new around podcast advertising: ‘in-app offers’. It means that when someone’s listening to a podcast and hears an ad from a sponsor with a particular offer, they’ll also be able to tap on a link to redeem that offer from within the podcast’s episode page in Spotify’s mobile app.
“Most podcast listening happens in screenless moments like when you’re getting ready for work, exercising, running errands, cooking dinner, or washing the dishes. If you hear a compelling offer, you need to make a mental note of it for when you return back to your phone or computer,” is how Spotify described the problem it’s trying to solve here (as much for advertisers as for listeners).
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Source: Music ally

Twenty One Pilots launch a never-ending music video

Last week, we covered Twenty One Pilots’ scavenger hunt to promote their new single, ‘Level Of Concern’, which got fans to track down codes hidden online to unlock content. Which they did much faster than expected.
“We didn’t think you would tear through the codes so easily,” the band tweeted. “Should have taken a week but you did it in just over 12 hours. You got us this time. Now join in with your footage, your art, your dances, and be a part of the first ever never-ending music video.”
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Source: Music ally

AiMi app uses AI to provide adaptive electronic music

Aimed at electronic music fans, a new app called AiMi is using AI technology to turn existing tracks from artists into adaptive experiences for listeners.
The idea: listeners set the ‘energy’ rate they want, based on a scale of 1 to 10, and the app delivers a flow of continuous music to suit their requirements. AiMi uses a freemium model: people can listen to 30 minutes of free music every day, but if they pay $5.99 a month they can listen as much as they want.
“Unlike traditional systems that use AI to mimic artists, AiMi uses AI to generate music using real beats created by real artists,” is the claim.
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Source: Music ally

shesaid·so and YouTube Music team up for mentorship schemes

shesaid.so – the organisation pushing for gender equality in the music industry – is launching new virtual mentoring schemes for women and gender minorities in Italy and France. 
The schemes will be supported by YouTube Music, and will recruit 12 mentees in each country who will them be paired with either a local or international mentor (they can choose which). Those wishing to be mentees and mentors have until 7 June to apply.
The successful applicants will then take part in one-to-one meetings between mentors and mentees and monthly coaching sessions between July and November, with all meetings happening online. There will also be sessions with guest experts and topics covered will include public speaking, negotiation techniques, impostor syndrome and more.
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Source: Music ally

Chantel Jeffries gives Triller exclusive for new video

TikTok is not the only short-form video game in town and Triller has been snapping at its heels for some time, making a strong splash in the US and drawing in hip-hop acts in particular. Triller has now landed the exclusive on the video for ‘Come Back To Me’ by US singer/producer/model/YouTube personality Chantel Jeffries.
The video is made from fan-created content and edited together with AI technology. It plays out in real time where Jeffries and assorted friends connect and collaboratively create the video.
“The main goal Chantel and I always have is to create ‘first of its kind’ experiences while merging Chantel’s digital-first brand and audience with her music,” said her manager, Alexis Fleischer of Timeline Management. “The partnership with Triller highlights an innovative and forward-thinking mindset, bringing our vision to life while creating outbound traffic to partners for streaming music.”
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Source: Music ally

Get set for Wireless Connect and Electric Blockaloo virtual festivals

Livestreams are all the rage in 2020, but the related ‘virtual concerts’ category is seeing some activity too. Travis Scott’s performances in Fortnite, which attracted 27.7 million people in total, are the obvious example, but there are also experiments happening around virtual reality, as well as other online games.
VR startup MelodyVR has expanded on its partnership with Live Nation subsidiary Festival Republic around the UK’s Wireless Festival. The physical event has been cancelled, but MelodyVR will be putting on “an entire weekend’s worth of unseen performances, exclusive footage, and much more” from 3-5 July instead, including broadcasts in VR from MelodyVR’s studios in Los Angeles and London.
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Source: Music ally

ERA boss Kim Bayley joins the #BrokenRecord streaming debate

The #BrokenRecord campaign has been gathering momentum in recent weeks – and was even the subject of our own Music Ally TV Show last week. Now ERA, the body that represents retailers and digital music services in the UK, has weighed into the debate.
ERA CEO Kim Bayley has published a blog post with her thoughts on the topic, walking the line between supporting artists and defending the streaming services.
“The effective closure of the live music business has robbed many musicians of their biggest single source of revenue. It is no wonder that this has focused attention on the relatively low returns many feel they see from the use of their recordings by digital service providers (DSPs),” wrote Bayley.
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Source: Music ally

Is Harry Potter exclusive a sign of Spotify audiobook plans?

Spotify doesn’t think exclusives are good… for music. Spoken-word content? That’s a different story: the streaming service has been eagerly striking exclusive deals with podcasters and investing heavily in its own original shows. Now audiobooks are joining the party. Well, a new all-star reading of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone isn’t strictly exclusive to […]
The post Is Harry Potter exclusive a sign of Spotify audiobook plans? appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Dolby On could help musicians sound better on Twitch livestreams

Audio company Dolby has just launched its Dolby On app for Android, following its earlier release for iOS. It allows users to record high-quality audio and video on their smartphone. More interestingly, however, the company has also announced that the iOS version of Dolby On now works with live-video platform Twitch, enabling users to livestream […]
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Source: Music ally

The Rattle goes non-profit while Tileyard goes north

Two of London’s physical music-tech communities have announced plans for their future. The Rattle, which now has bases in London and Los Angeles to bring musicians, producers, music professionals and startups into the same community space, has announced that it is diverting 100% of its profits to help artists struggling with the financial impact of […]
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Source: Music ally

Zoom has 200m daily users, but CEO promises to fix its problems

A month ago, most of us had never even heard of video-conferencing app Zoom. Now it feels like we’re all on it having work meetings and catching up with friends and family.
The company behind it has revealed that Zoom was being used by 200 million daily users in March – up from an average of just 10 million at the end of December 2019. Amazing growth, but Zoom’s ubiquity has also exposed some problems with the platform and its technology, and a number of articles questioning its security and privacy policies.
Now CEO Eric Yuan has published a blog post about Zoom’s growing pains, which also seeks to reassure users spooked by those reports.
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Source: Music ally

European music orgs call for more pandemic-tackling investment

A collective of 40 European music bodies are calling for the European Union and also national governments to deliver more support to the music industry and its creators, in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
“In light of this dire situation, we call for emergency as well as sustainable public support and structural policies at EU, national, regional and local level to consolidate the music ecosystem, and help it thrive again in all its diversity,” explained the group, led by Impala.
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Source: Music ally

Hips my Life: Hipgnosis buys catalogue of Bon Jovi’s Richie Sambora

Richie Sambora is best known as the guitarist in Bon Jovi and co-writer of some of their biggest hits (such as ‘Livin’ On A Prayer’, ‘You Give Love A Bad Name’ and ‘It’s My Life’) which, three decades on from their release, still do decent business on streaming services. Those three songs along have combined streams of more than 1.2bn.
Now the world’s keenest catalogue shopper, Hipgnosis Songs Fund, has snapped up 186 of Sambora’s compositions and co-writes for its rapidly expanding collection.
Besides all his writing credits on Bon Jovi’s 12 studio albums, the deal also covers Sambora’s three solo albums (although his most popular solo tracks (‘Father Time’, ‘Hard Times Come Easy’ and ‘In It For Love’ have barely passed 1m streams each on Spotify.)
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Source: Music ally

Midem 2020 conference cancelled, replaced by ‘digital edition’

Conference organiser Reed Midem has confirmed that its Midem event, which was due to take place on 2-5 June, has been cancelled – in its physical form, at least. The next Midem will be in June 2021.
“The situation related to the coronavirus is changing daily, as are government announcements and restrictions… Given the uncertainty surrounding the virus and companies’ concerns for the safety of their people, it is not possible to hold Midem in June in Cannes,” said Midem director Alexandre Deniot in a statement.
There will be a replacement for this year’s event however: the ‘Midem Digital Edition’ online, with live-streamed keynotes and talks, as well as online networking. A full programme for that will be announced in the coming weeks. Based on yesterday’s entirely-online AIM Sync, which seemed to go swimmingly, digital conferences can work well, so we’ll be interested to see what Midem comes up with.
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Source: Music ally

View-Tang Clan: Amazon Music makes Ol’ Dirty Bastard documentary

Wu-Tang Clan member Ol’ Dirty Bastard released his debut solo album ‘Return to the 36 Chambers: The Dirty Version’ on 28th March 1995. To mark its quarter-century anniversary Amazon has created the Unique: Return To The 36 Chambers 25 Years Later mini-documentary. It features previously unseen footage of the late rapper as well as interviews […]
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Source: Music ally

Russian anti-piracy boss hails efforts to tackle infringement

The head of Russian anti-piracy body the Internet Video Association has claimed that voluntary piracy measures in the country imposed two years ago have been having the desired impact. Back in 2018, a number of Russian content companies, platforms and distributors – bowing to years of pressure, lobbying and litigation – signed up to a […]
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Source: Music ally

iHeartMedia withdraws its financial guidance for 2020

It’s not so long since US radio firm iHeartMedia was in deep financial troubles, and while it pulled itself out of those last year, it’s understandably one of the companies being hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. Now the company has followed Twitter in withdrawing its guidance for analysts (financial predictions) for 2020. “Given the ongoing uncertainty […]
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Source: Music ally

SoundCloud creates artist shortcuts alerting fans to new uploads

SoundCloud has added a new feature to its iOS app that will alert users to new uploads (or reposts) from favourite acts as soon as they open the app itself. The company claims that in early testing of the feature it saw engagement with an act’s music increase by over 25%. In a blog post about […]
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Source: Music ally

Publishers awarded $189k in damages in Wolfgang’s case

A long-running legal action against Wolfgang’s Vaults over its streaming of archive concerts has resulted in music publishers being awarded $189,500 in damages. There were 197 separate songs listed in the suit, with 167 of them were deemed to have been wilfully infringed. That means that the per-song infringement worked out at $1,000 each, far below […]
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Source: Music ally

Eventbrite tears up its financial predictions for 2020

Ticketing firm Eventbrite has withdrawn its business outlook – the predictions for revenues, profits etc that public companies provide to analysts – in the light of the coronavirus-fuelled uncertainty around the live entertainment business.
CEO Julia Hartz described the situation as “unprecedented”. “The year started off strong across the board and we are now seeing a material impact to our business from the virus,” she said in a statement. “While the ultimate magnitude of this near-term impact is unclear at this time, we remain confident in our go forward strategy, our market position and the long-term demand for live experiences.”
In late February, Eventbrite issued its guidance for 2020, having grown its revenues by 12% to $327m in 2019. The company predicted net revenues of $84m-88m in the first quarter of 2020 – up 3%-8% year-on-year – and revenues of $342m-$359m for the full calendar year, up between 5% and 10%.
The post Eventbrite tears up its financial predictions for 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Years & Years & TikTok: capitalising on a viral hit

British band Years & Years swiftly set up a TikTok account at the end of last week – in a large part because their cover of 2003’s ‘Breathe’ (by Sean Paul ft. Blu Cantrell) from six years ago was having a viral impact on the app without any push from them.
They were able to capitalise on that to the point where the song had become the sixth most reactive song on Spotify UK at the beginning of last week. YMU, the band’s management company, began digging around to figure out what was behind this viral uplift and what they could do to capitalise on it, tracking down the original post from a TikTok user.
They then traced how the phrase “What’s that supposed to be about, baby?” from the song quickly became a catchphrase among users of the app to the point where the original sample has been used in over 1.2m videos. They saw a spike in Shazams of the song and Olly Alexander (lead singer of Years & Years) recorded his own video using the clip.
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Source: Music ally

Lauv is latest artist to launch a Landmrk-powered treasure hunt

Music Ally has been covering location-based marketing startup Landmrk for several years now, including its campaigns for artists including CNCO, Ariana Grande and Louis Tomlinson.
The startup’s latest client is AWAL act Lauv, to promote the release of new album ‘How I’m Feeling’. The angle is that Lauv has hidden clips of the album’s tracks across the world, pinning them to specific locations using Landmrk’s platform.
“Unlock new songs by logging in from your current location. Share what you unlock using #howimfeeling,” encourages the official website, which fans must open on their phones to take part in the digital treasure hunt.
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Source: Music ally

Music monitoring startup Audoo’s latest funding round is £1.5m

Audoo is a British startup that has launched technology for monitoring music played in public spaces, in order to ensure the proper performance royalties are paid.
The company has just raised £1.5m (just over $1.9m) in its latest funding round, with investors including Tileyard London – the fast-growing music hub into which Audoo will soon move its office.
“What Audoo are creating finally offers true and fair insight across the music industry […] We’re proud to have invested in such an entrepreneurial business, and cannot wait to have the team here at Tileyard within our thriving creative community,” said Tileyard London founder Nick Keynes in a statement.
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Source: Music ally

‘Hey Spotify’ – streaming service’s work on voice tech continues

App-cracker Jane Manchun Wong has been poking around in Spotify’s innards again, and has uncovered more signs of the streaming service’s work on voice controls.
It’s a toggle to enable a feature called ‘Hey Spotify’, which will have the app “listen for Hey Spotify when the app is open and on your screen”. Note, Spotify has already worked with voice controls, as explained here on its support website, but they’re triggered by pressing and holding the ‘search’ icon (not that we could get this to work on our iPhone this morning) rather than by speaking.
The post ‘Hey Spotify’ – streaming service’s work on voice tech continues appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Bytedance’s Resso launches in India but can it drive subscriptions?

A much-hyped freemium music service has launched in India, but without one of the world’s major music companies. Déjà vu, anyone? Almost exactly a year on from Spotify’s debut in India amid a dispute with publisher Warner Chappell, Bytedance has officially launched its widely-anticipated Resso streaming service in India. There’s no legal battle this time, but Universal […]
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Source: Music ally

Phantom Of The Tokera: get set for TikTok: the stage show

You like the app – now try the festival. The storied London Palladium theatre will be hosting ‘For You Stage, a Live Show Feat TikTok Superstars’ on 24 and 25 May this year. Named after the ‘For You’ discovery tab in TikTok, the show “will incorporate some of the biggest content creators on the TikTok […]
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Source: Music ally

Mixcloud turns 10 and loses its cloud with new M-X logo

A decade is a lifetime in digital music. Back in 2010, for example, digital made up just 29% of the global recorded music business, according to IFPI numbers. In that time, UK-based firm Mixcloud has gone from bootstrapped startup to having a library of over 50m radio shows, DJ mixes and podcasts that have come […]
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Source: Music ally

Music, gender representation and the ‘pipeline problem’

The lack of women nominated in some of the key mixed-gender categories at last night’s Brit Awards was a talking point even within the awards itself. Now Vick Bain, the former CEO of songwriters body BASCA (now the Ivors Academy) has published some thoughts on the issue of diversity in music awards ceremonies and festival lineups that are relevant well beyond the UK.
Bain’s argument is that the core problem driving male-heavy nominations and lineups is what she terms the music pipeline, citing her experience researching the historical winners of the Ivor Novello Awards, and finding that only 6% had been women – rising to only 10% since 2010.
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Source: Music ally

Nielsen report sheds light on American video streaming habits

Research firm Nielsen’s latest ‘Total Audience Report’ is its first to tap smart TV data from Gracenote, and focuses on American homes that are (in TechCrunch’s words) “capable of over-the-top streaming” – i.e. Netflix, YouTube etc. Among those homes, streaming accounted for 19% of the TV time in the final quarter of 2019. Netflix was the […]
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Source: Music ally

Patreon ramps up European ambitions with new Berlin office

Fresh from signing up M.I.A. to fan-fund on its service, Patreon has opened an office in Berlin. It’s part of a wider expansion across Europe, with offices already in Porto and Dublin. Patreon is also allowing newly-signed-up creators to now price their tiers and be paid in euros, pounds or dollars –existing creators on the platform will […]
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Source: Music ally

Twitter quarterly revenues top $1bn for the first time

A symbolic moment for Twitter almost 14 years after its founding: for the first time, its quarterly revenues surpassed $1bn ($1.01bn, to be precise, an increase of 11% year-on-year). The company’s share price rose on the news, following fears that its advertising revenues were slowing down.
Twitter uses its own metric of MDAUs (monetisable daily active users) to measure its success and they were up 21% year-on-year to a record 152 million – ahead of analysts’ projections). Of those 152 million MDAUs, 121m were outside of the US.
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Source: Music ally

Social star KSI debuts on TikTok with #WakeUpCallChallenge

British YouTuber KSI is a social media sensation. His YouTube channel has 21m subscribers, while his November boxing match against fellow influencer Logan Paul was described as “the biggest amateur boxing match in history”.
KSI has also been releasing music for some time: his first single came out in 2013, while in November 2019 he signed a deal with BMG’s RBC Records for the next phase of his musical career. This week his new single ‘Wake Up Call’ comes out, accompanied by a big TikTok push.
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Source: Music ally

AIM CEO pushes for post-Brexit ‘touring passport’ for artists

Paul Pacifico, CEO of UK indies body AIM, used his speech at the organisation’s AIM Connected event in London this week to talk about post-Brexit challenges for musicians. “We are working alongside our colleagues at the Musicians Union and other partners at UK Music to promote the idea of a ‘touring passport’ to try to […]
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Source: Music ally

Justin Bieber sparks controversy by reposting fan-made slideshow

“Create a playlist with Yummy on repeat and stream it. Don’t mute it! Play it at a low volume. Let it play while you sleep.” “Buy the song on iTunes. Buy the song multiple times on Justin’s website.”
These quotes are from a slideshow, complete with artwork reminiscent of a MySpace page in 2007, posted by a Bieber fan account, encouraging other fans to stream and buy his new single ‘Yummy’ enough times to guarantee it a number one spot in the US. It even told non-US fans how to use a VPN in order to lend their support.
We can forgive fans for this kind of enthusiasm, not to mention their ignorance about chart-eligibility rules, but the slideshow has sparked a controversy because Bieber’s official Instagram account shared it, before deleting the post when it was noticed by the wider world.
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Source: Music ally

In 2019, UK music-streaming spending passed £1bn for the first time

Consumer spending on music streaming in the UK passed the symbolic £1bn mark for the first time last year, according to figures published by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA) today.
Brits spent just over £1bn on streaming subscriptions in 2019, up by 23.5% from the £812m spent in 2018 – and 31 times the spend on streaming back in 2010. The 2019 spend is equivalent to £19.2m a week, £2.74m a day, £114,486 an hour or… you get the picture.
According to ERA, streaming accounted for just under 72% of the £1.41bn spent on recorded music overall last year in the UK. Spend on physical was down by 17% to £318m, accounting for 22.5% of the total, while downloads fell by 26.8% to £89.7m, just 6.3% of all spend.
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Source: Music ally

Billboard parent company buys Nielsen Music as battle of charts heats up

Valence Media, the owner of Billboard, is buying the Nielsen Music “insights and product suite’ that it uses for its charts in the US. 
The two companies were previously under the same roof between 1999 and 2009 when they were part of Dutch media group Verenigde Nederlandse Uitgeverijen (VNU). That was until VNU sold Billboard to e5 Global Media Holdings which eventually led to its operating under Valence.
“By bringing Nielsen Music Products and Billboard back together, we’re answering the request from the music industry for a more coordinated, powerful, agile and global suite of independent measurement products,” said Deanna Brown, president of Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Group, in a statement.
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Source: Music ally

BTS show off Spotify stats, but YouTube still bigger for them

The latest act to get into the Spotify Wrapped co-promotion mood are BTS, with the headline stat being that their music has been streamed over 3bn times on Spotify in 2019. Those streams come from 60 million people across 79 countries – resulting in 178.4m listening hours. Reminder: Spotify’s ‘Wrapped’ data covers the period of January […]
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Source: Music ally

Qube co-create music space to open in January in London

A variety of tools and platforms have allowed artists and industry professionals to collaborate remotely, but real-world meetings are also important, especially the serendipity that can arise from them. That’s part of the logic behind Qube, a new co-create space that will open in West London in January. The membership-based complex has been set up by […]
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Source: Music ally

Sony Music UK appoints VP of podcasting and creative strategy

Streaming services are going in all guns blazing with podcasts and the major labels are following suit. In April, Universal Music Group announced a partnership with podcast publisher Wondery to develop original podcasts based on the label’s catalogue, artists and labels. Sony Music has launched two podcast-focused joint ventures, and recently unveiled its US leadership team for podcasts. […]
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Source: Music ally

RoadNation is latest platform to help acts de-risk tours

Touting (scalping) is an ongoing problem for mega-acts, where demand far outstrips supply. The inverse, of course, is the case for smaller acts – where tours can lose them money and small venues are often sparsely attended. RoadNation is the latest platform aiming to help, by developing what it is terming a “direct to fan” touring […]
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Source: Music ally

What do YouTube’s new harassment policies mean for music?

Spend any amount of time digging in to the comments on any public figure’s social-media accounts, and you’ll quickly realise it’s not all wonderful #engagement with fans. In fact, it can often be a cesspit. This is a challenge all the social networks (and streaming services with comments enabled) are trying to tackle. Yesterday, YouTube announced […]
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Source: Music ally

UMG, EMI Trust and The eXceL Project back Secret Studio

As part of a collaboration between UMG, the EMI Trust and youth-community charity The eXceL Project, the three-day education programme Secret Studio has resulted in the release of two new original tracks. The eXceL Project’s (XLP) community leaders picked six individuals, aged between 16 and 20, from different backgrounds across London to harness their creativity […]
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Source: Music ally

Harry Styles had 2019’s most cryptic music-marketing campaign

The treasure hunt, scattering of Easter eggs and a good dash of the cryptic is a failsafe in music marketing. It is all a nice way to get the fanbase excited about a new album, an opportunity to test out a new platform and hopefully get some virality and/or wider media coverage in the process.
But the set up for ‘Adore You’, the current single from Harry Styles’ imminent second album, has taken all this to a whole other level. Billboard has the full breakdown of the campaign and has spoken to Manos Xanthogeorgis, SVP of digital marketing & media at Columbia Records, about just how huge and complex an undertaking it all was.
It involved leaving a convoluted trail of clues through videos, dusty corners of the internet and social media while also responding in real time to the Styles fanbase’s ability to crack clues (or not) and amending the rest of the campaign on the hoof as a result, giving them nudges in the right direction when required.
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Source: Music ally

TikTok backs the Giggs economy in month-long partnership

TikTok currently finds itself in a position that YouTube knows only too well, being simultaneously hailed as a kingmaker for breaking new artists, and a hot potato when it comes to the question of licensing and royalties for music on its platform. Part of TikTok’s charm offensive is partnerships with artists, and the latest example […]
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Source: Music ally

The Weeknd becomes face and sound of luxury electric car ad

“Oh Lord, won’t you buy me a Mercedes Benz?” sang Janis Joplin in 1970. “My friends all drive Porsches, I must make amends.” Half a century on, instead of wishing for luxury automative brands to fall out of the sky, pop stars now become creative directors for them. Which is the long way round to […]
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Source: Music ally

Deezer launches its own Christmas originals album

Deezer has pulled together its 18-track Big Christmas album where acts including Ella Henderson, Aurora, Circa Waves, Thalía and Gabrielle Aplin record covers of Christmas classics that are exclusive to the streaming service. The album pulls in artists from a range of countries including Australia, France, Norway, Mexico the UK and the Philippines, and working across a […]
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Source: Music ally

Americans not entirely sold on smart-speaker personalisation

There are many studies on adoption of smart speakers and which companies are dominating the market – with research firm Canalys forecasting that more than 200m devices will be sold this year globally. However, other studies have picked up on potential privacy issues around speakers ‘listening’ (and recording) within people’s homes. Now the Pew Research Center has published a […]
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Source: Music ally

Neil Young (deliberately) falls off the Facebook of the Earth

Neil Young’s debut solo single in 1968 wasn’t called ‘The Loner’ by accident. He has defiantly ploughed his own furrow for over half a century – and that relates as much to his attitude to the industry around him as it does to the music he creates. He has now announced, in a brief posting on […]
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Source: Music ally

Mariah Carey launches enhanced Christmas album with Spotify

At the time of writing, Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You’ is the 41st most-streamed Spotify track in the UK, which tells you something about we Brits’ eagerness to embrace Christmas rather than think about Brexit and/or our upcoming general election.
The rest of the world will be catching up (on Mariah, not Brexit) over the coming weeks. Spotify is also pulling out all the bells and whistles (and fairy lights and tinsel) for the 25th anniversary of Carey’s festive track and the album it was taken from.
Cue the ‘Mariah Carey’s All I Want for Christmas Is You Experience’ enhanced-album on Spotify. The enhancements being a video intro of Carey in her secret command centre literally pressing the button that starts Christmas; looping ‘Canvas’ video clips accompanying the songs from the album; voice messages and some live videos.
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Source: Music ally

Universal Music launches streaming/social data app for artists

Universal Music Artists (UMA) is a new Android and iOS app for artists signed to Universal Music Group (and their managers) where they can access data and insights on their music plays on the major international DSPs – Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music and YouTube are named in the announcement.
However, it will also pull in data from Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The pitch to artists, as with third-party analytics services, is that they’ll get “actionable insights to move your career forward, plan tours and build set-lists… see how your tracks are performing on playlists, and understand which playlists you should be on, and more”.
UMG says it has been working with managers to develop the app, while its VP of data analytics Mitchell Shymansky has published a blog post on Medium outlining some of the thinking behind it.
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Source: Music ally

TikTok moves into ticketing – in Thailand for now

TikTok is testing a new music-related feature in Thailand: selling tickets. The company is partnering with several local companies, including BEC Tero (which promotes concerts, owns a record label and produces films and TV shows); Neon Festivals; ticketing firm Ticketmelon; and cinema chain Major Cineplex. For now, TikTok will be selling tickets for 500 films […]
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Source: Music ally

MelodyVR doubles down on Good Morning America partnership

British virtual reality startup MelodyVR latest move is using music to push itself deeper into the world of mainstream TV. It has extended its deal with the ABC network in the US and its ‘Good Morning America’ show to offer TV performances from a number of country acts – including Trisha Yearwood, Trace Adkins, Luke Combs and […]
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Source: Music ally

It’s Mariah Carey’s Christmas; we just live in it

‘All I Want For Christmas is You’ is Mariah Carey’s biggest streaming hit by a distance: it has 511.9m Spotify streams and 555m YouTube views, for example. The ‘Merry Christmas’ album the track originally featured on is getting the ‘deluxe anniversary edition’ treatment for its 25th anniversary this year, too, while in the UK Carey […]
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Source: Music ally

Sony Music to make a daily satirical podcast with The Onion

Sony Music Entertainment is partnering with satirical website The Onion to launch a new daily podcast in 2020. ‘The Topical’ will go live in January and will deliver daily sideswipes at the news and current affairs. It’s part of a wider trend towards shorter, daily podcasts that fit neatly into people’s work and home routines. […]
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Source: Music ally

Vevo on how to get more YouTube views (and avoid an ‘algorithmic death-spiral’)

Ed Walker, VP of original content & production at Vevo, used his presentation at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit to explain how to ensure videos on YouTube benefit from – rather than rub against – the platform’s recommendation algorithms.
Walker used Vevo’s catalogue of music videos and original content – more than 400k videos in total – to illustrate the kinds of tactics labels and artists should be thinking about. Vevo’s catalogue generated 76.3bn views on YouTube in the first quarter of 2019 alone.
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Source: Music ally

Linkfire boss talks smarter attribution and the death of cookies

Lars Ettrup, CEO of smart-links firm Linkfire, delivered a talk at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit conference in London this week on “the joys of attribution”, and how music marketers can better track the journey music fans take from discovery through to consumption and purchase.
“With all the channels and influencers who can drive streams, how do you actually monitor the effect of that?” he asked.
Ettrup outlined what Linkfire is currently doing and what the company is trying to achieve as well as the marketing and data trends that it sees coming.
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Source: Music ally

What ‘trigger cities’ really mean for music marketing

Music Ally has covered analytics firm Chartmetric’s concept of Trigger Cities before but at Sandbox Summit in London this week, we assembled a panel of marketing experts to talk about the idea in practice and how – or if – it is changing the architecture of their global campaigns.
Chaired by Isabelle Ljungqvist, digital marketing coordinator at Music Ally, it opened with Chaz Jenkins (partner and advisor at Chartmetric) walking the audience through the data and trends that led to the formation of the Trigger Cities idea.
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Source: Music ally

Domino wins Music Ally’s Campaign of the Year award for Hot Chip

Domino’s campaign for A Bath Full Of Ecstasy – the seventh studio album from Hot Chip – was named Campaign Of The Year at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit in London yesterday (30th October).
It was one of five shortlisted campaigns that were put to an audience vote and it emerged as the clear winner. It was praised for the way in which it reawakened the band’s existing fanbase after a four-year gap from Why Make Sense?, their previous studio album. It also managed to position the band in front of a new Gen Z audience.
In our overview of the campaign, we said, “It worked on a mixture of traditional posts like playlists as well as fun artist posts. The attention to detail for all these activations was very strong throughout the campaign. This was a really ambitious campaign for Domino and they executed it really well.”
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Source: Music ally

Tencent Music’s Andy Ng talks AI recommendations and karaoke expansion

In a keynote interview at the Amsterdam Dance Event (ADE) conference in Amsterdam, Tencent Music’s Andy Ng outlined his role in combatting piracy in China, building a legal streaming market there and why he and his employers are betting heavy on the EDM boom. Ng stepped back from his role as group VP at Tencent […]
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Source: Music ally

Lessons from game streaming: the platform, not the gamer, rules all

The State Of The Stream report from Stream Elements covering Q3 2019 has been published and offers plenty of insights into the game-streaming world. Unsurprisingly, Twitch is the dominant platform here, accounting for 75.6% of hours watched in the period. What is perhaps most interesting is the fact that gaming giant Ninja recently defected from Twitch […]
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Source: Music ally

Bring Me The Horizon create “Spotify-powered T-shirts”

Sony Music/RCA Records UK act Bring Me The Horizon are using their fans’ Spotify listening data to shape the T-shirt design that they can then buy – all as part of the promotion for their amo album from January. By going to a dedicated web page, they log in with their Spotify details and then […]
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Source: Music ally

Everyone is getting sucked into the Fortnite black hole

If you are parents to children of a certain age, the pain of the last few days will have been immense. “Is it back yet? Is it working again? WHY?” Fortnite’s servers have been down since Sunday as it wrapped up its 10th season. Instead of the normal game play, users were presented with a swirling black […]
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Source: Music ally

Dutch hip-hop sees streaming-powered domestic boom but export is still the nut to crack

Our latest country profile (available to Music Ally subscribers) is now online and looks at the Netherlands. The country was ranked number 11 globally in 2018 by IFPI and streaming now makes up 51% of the recorded music market there. Its biggest album of last year was Hella Cash by Josylvio, a local rapper, which outsold […]
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Source: Music ally

Transgressive Records at 15: ‘Sometimes great things take time…’

On paper, 2004 was one of the worst years in living memory to set up a record label. The decade-and-a-half decline in recorded-music revenues was well underway, with CD sales falling off a cliff. And the main lifeline in sight, Apple’s iTunes Store, was unbundling the traditional album. Optimism was in short supply.
And yet: Transgressive Records was founded in London in 2004. From the start, it was a curious blend of analogue and digital, and the tension between the two was arguably what made the company stand out. Co-founders
Transgressive Records was founded in London in 2004. Co-founders Tim Dellow and Toby L met at a Bloc Party concert, with Tim’s Trash Aesthetics label having put out their debut single, which Toby had given a five-star review on the Rock Feedback site that he ran.
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Source: Music ally

Napster’s Angel Gambino talks tech, Ek and streaming’s evolution

Angel Gambino has been in the digital trenches since the late 1990s. Her career has seen her work in early social gaming (for Gameplay·com); test the digital waters for TV (at the BBC and Viacom); and forge content strategies for social networking (Bebo).
In 2019, she’s putting the lessons learned to work in her current role as chief commercial officer at music-streaming firm Napster. Music Ally spoke to Gambino about her career memories, from getting Bill Gates to work with the BBC to what happened when Rupert Murdoch beat Viacom to the acquisition of MySpace – via her warning to Spotify CEO Daniel Ek in the early days of the “difficult and ugly” process of getting his company up and running.
Gambino’s career started at the epicentre of the first dotcom boom in San Francisco in the late 1990s. She remembers “this hope, this energy and this belief” at the time that technology could change society for the better.
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Source: Music ally

T-Series hits 100m subscribers on YouTube

We have been writing about T-Series, the Indian label and film production company that specialises in Bollywood soundtracks, for several years but have been most intrigued by its move onto YouTube, especially as it began to overtake PewDiePie in terms of channel subscribers (although that got very, very ugly on PewDiePie’s side). Now T-Series has just passed 100m subscribers, […]
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Source: Music ally

Tidal has lots of things up its sleeve for the exclusive on Prince’s new album.

Remember streaming exclusives? Everyone seems to have given up on them. Well, everyone except Tidal. It has announced that it has the exclusive on Originals, a posthumous album from Prince containing a number of unheard demos from the legendary artist, and it will be on the streaming service from 7th June. It appears this will […]
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Source: Music ally

How Otis McDonald built a career… though royalty-free YouTube music

With the EU Copyright Directive passed but still to be implemented by the different member states, the issue of the ‘value gap’ certainly hasn’t gone away.
At the heart of this debate is the argument that ‘user-uploaded content’ services, most notably YouTube, that use music as such a core part of their business should be paying more to music rightsholders.
It’s not that YouTube isn’t licensed or paying royalties – it is – but rather that (in rightsholders’ eyes) going into negotiations without the existing safe harbours would put YouTube on a level playing field with other services like Spotify, and (they hope) lead to higher payments.
It’s never been a contradiction that amid this often-bitter debate, a variety of artists have found ways to use YouTube as a platform for audience-building AND growing incomes. The latest has taken an unusual route.
The post How Otis McDonald built a career… though royalty-free YouTube music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Social media’s impact on the life satisfaction of teenagers is “tiny”

Every generation has its folk devil – the one thing that is apparently going to corrupt and destroy “the young people”. The hula hoop, radio, Hollywood, TV, rock ’n’ roll, Cabbage Patch Kids (maybe), acid house, computer games. On and on the list will roll. The current one (apart from Fortnite) is social media. But a […]
The post Social media’s impact on the life satisfaction of teenagers is “tiny” appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Facebook boosts original content in its rankings

For a number of years, in part to try and steal a march on YouTube, Facebook has been encouraging native uploads from creators (i.e. posting videos straight to Facebook rather than linking to external sites). Now it is courting filmmakers and saying that it will, over the coming months, add “a series of ranking updates” for videos. […]
The post Facebook boosts original content in its rankings appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Google will offer users greater privacy and restrict cookie usage

There are flashpoint moments like Cambridge Analytica or major data breaches, but privacy concerns remain a low rumbling noise in the background for most people using online platforms and connected devices. At Google’s I/O conference this week, the company took steps to address this. Well, a bit. It will apply stricter controls on tracking users. […]
The post Google will offer users greater privacy and restrict cookie usage appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

How music companies are gaming streaming with “playlist stuffing”

Kieron Donoghue – founder of Humble Angel Records and former VP of global playlists strategy and curation at Warner Music – has been blogging about the trend of “playlist stuffing” that he has been spotting on streaming services. As songs qualify as a stream and, therefore, a payment after 30 seconds, he says a key tactic has […]
The post How music companies are gaming streaming with “playlist stuffing” appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Rolling Stone creates new US chart

Hands up who ordered a new music chart. Anyone? Anyone at all? Bueller? Bueller? Oh, Rolling Stone did. It is launching in the US and is intended to compete with Billboard’s own charts. The big difference here is that this is designed as a daily chart rather than a weekly one and will lean more heavily […]
The post Rolling Stone creates new US chart appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG sees streaming push up recorded numbers but publishing slips

Warner Music Group has published its numbers for the fiscal second quarter (ending 31st March 2019) and the headlines are that total revenue across all parts of the business was up 13.2% and that it saw net income of $67m compared to a net loss of $1m in the same period last year. Digital was, […]
The post WMG sees streaming push up recorded numbers but publishing slips appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Music service Wynk loses statutory licensing case in India

A judge in the Bombay High Court in India has ruled against streaming and download service Wynk in its long-running licensing dispute with record company Tips Industries. It is a protracted story but, in brief, Tips and Wynk had failed to agree licensing terms back in 2017 and this saw Tips requesting that its catalogue of […]
The post Music service Wynk loses statutory licensing case in India appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BBC plans Alexa rival

“Auntie – what’s the weather going to be like today?” This is not some reference to Mary Poppins or Paddington but rather to the fact that the BBC is reportedly working on a voice assistant rival to Alexa and Siri. It is being dubbed “Auntie” internally but will probably not be the official name it launches […]
The post BBC plans Alexa rival appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Billie Eilish’s managers on the future of the album in the streaming age and why radio is far from dead

Danny Rukasin and Brandon Goodman co-manage Billie Eilish and they have been talking to MBW about the stealth development underpinning her career and how her debut album – When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? – is having to work in the streaming and playlisting era. “While playlists drive single consumption, albums can be […]
The post Billie Eilish’s managers on the future of the album in the streaming age and why radio is far from dead appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Readin’ In The Free World: Neil Young announces book about HQ audio

First it was a device, then a streaming platform/archive and now it’s going to be a book. Neil Young, the audiophile’s audiophile, is making his mission to improve digital audio the centre of a new book that will be out in September. Young has co-written the self-explanatory To Feel The Music: A Songwriter’s Quest To Save […]
The post Readin’ In The Free World: Neil Young announces book about HQ audio appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

ERA boss defends streaming services against the “insidious rise in name-calling”

Any discussion of what streaming services do (or don’t) pay out is always going to get people’s blood pressure up. Are streaming services saving the business? Or are they part of a Big Tech turbo-conspiracy to exploit (and rip off) creators? Kim Bayley, CEO of ERA, has waded into the debate and argues that accusations […]
The post ERA boss defends streaming services against the “insidious rise in name-calling” appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

PledgeMusic goes into pre-administration: report

Hypebot is reporting that PledgeMusic has gone into pre-administration as its future now hangs in the balance. According to sources, a buyer for the troubled crowdfunding platform is still possibly in the wings seeking to acquire it – but is deliberating. “UK based corporate advisory FRP has been named to contact potential buyers and value the […]
The post PledgeMusic goes into pre-administration: report appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

EU to formally investigate Apple following Spotify’s anti-trust complaint

It is a dispute that has been brewing for a long time and which went public in recent months. Now, according to the FT, the European Union is preparing to formally investigate Spotify-led anti-trust complaints about Apple and its App Store. In brief, Spotify is arguing that Apple is “tilting the playing field to disadvantage competitors” […]
The post EU to formally investigate Apple following Spotify’s anti-trust complaint appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Project Wave app aims to blend private messaging with music

Music Ally cooled on the idea of ‘music messaging’ startups some time ago: there were a bunch of them, and sustainable business models/consumer interest was thin on the ground. But the intersection of music and messaging in other ways – streaming services integrating with Facebook Messenger, for example – is very interesting. Can Project Wave change our […]
The post Project Wave app aims to blend private messaging with music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Requestify is the latest spin on social, digital jukeboxes

The US in particular has seen several ‘digital jukebox’ startups in the last decade: often focused around people requesting songs from a smartphone app to play in the bar/space where they’re hanging out. Requestify, from Norway, is interesting because it’s doing more than just that. So yes, it’s a “fully app-driven social jukebox designed to […]
The post Requestify is the latest spin on social, digital jukeboxes appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Instrumental signs data partnership with Coda for talent spotting and development

Instrumental – which describes itself as a “data science-driven talent discovery business” – has partnered with live agency Coda to offer data on and insights into the fastest-growing acts that are self-releasing as well those on major or indie labels. Instrumental will create bespoke tools for Coda that will track acts across a variety of […]
The post Instrumental signs data partnership with Coda for talent spotting and development appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Julian Casablancas discards Spotify and Apple Music utterly, begrudgingly praises YouTube

Julian Casablancas of The Strokes and Cult Records has been speaking to Billboard about his various music projects, his record label and dealing with the creative process. But buried in the middle of the interview he talks about his dislike and distrust of most streaming services – and what their rise means for artists and labels. “In […]
The post Julian Casablancas discards Spotify and Apple Music utterly, begrudgingly praises YouTube appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube programming gets interactive

Ben Relles has been named as the new head of innovation at YouTube, a role that will see the video platform move deeper into interactive programming and live specials. He was previously head of unscripted (i.e. reality/documentary etc.) content at YouTube. There was a huge buzz around interactive TV late last year when the Bandersnatch episode […]
The post YouTube programming gets interactive appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The Weeknd invests in esports company OverActive Media/Splyce

If an esports company exists and a US pop star or major label doesn’t buy a stake in it, does it even exist? That existential conundrum is not one that OverActive Media, the company that owns esports brand Splyce, will have to worry about now as The Weeknd has just invested in it. The Canadian company […]
The post The Weeknd invests in esports company OverActive Media/Splyce appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

“The music industry has always been excluding the vast majority of its potential”: Daniel Ek on Spotify’s past, present and future

Speaking on the Freakonomics Podcast (which handily also transcribed the interview), Daniel Ek, Spotify’s co-founder and CEO, spoke at length about the streaming service’s history, its future plans and its relationship with both musicians and music industry. He talked about his past and why growing up in Sweden in the 1990s – and the country’s […]
The post “The music industry has always been excluding the vast majority of its potential”: Daniel Ek on Spotify’s past, present and future appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Lush Cosmetics switches off social media in UK

Cosmetics company Lush has announced that it is shutting down its Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts in the UK. It will instead deal with customer queries on the phone, on its website or over email (how very 2002). Across a series of tweets (they were no doubt fully aware of the irony here), the company said […]
The post Lush Cosmetics switches off social media in UK appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

MicTurn takes the idea of open-mic concerts online

If you’ve ever been to an ‘open-mic’ concert, you’ll know how they work: musicians turn up with their instruments, sign up to take part and then wait their turn to play a few songs. Now there’s a startup trying to do that in the online world. It’s called MicTurn. “Choose from a list of online venues, […]
The post MicTurn takes the idea of open-mic concerts online appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Jam Session app hopes to spark social co-listening

Music Ally has seen a few startups try to make ‘co-listening’ a thing in our history, from Turntable and the original incarnation of Soundrop a few years ago to the radio-like Stationhead now. Next to try is a US startup called Jam Session, which is currently in beta. It’ll be an app that “lets you listen […]
The post Jam Session app hopes to spark social co-listening appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Former Facebook Portal designer working on Renaissance startup

Sometimes we spot a new music/tech startup on investment site AngelList with not much information on what it’s doing, but the people involved will make us prick our ears up. Renaissance is the latest example. The US startup has an interesting tagline – “What happened in 1300AD will happen again, soon” – and it’s listed in […]
The post Former Facebook Portal designer working on Renaissance startup appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Beat The Intro mobile game will push new releases and deep catalogue

A new music-based game has launched that claims it will create “new revenue and promotional opportunities for the music industry”. Beat The Intro says it has licensed “millions of tracks” already and, as its name suggests, tests how well users know music and how quickly they can identify a track. A short song intro is played […]
The post Beat The Intro mobile game will push new releases and deep catalogue appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

7digital must raise more equity to “continue as a going concern”

A business update posted on Polaris/Brighter IR, the investor relations site,  and dated 9th April says that the loss of MediaMarktSaturn as a customer has put the future of 7digital in serious doubt and that it will have to urgently raise new capital in order to keep going. “[T]he Board’s current view is that the […]
The post 7digital must raise more equity to “continue as a going concern” appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify Ad Studio adds advanced streaming conversion metrics

A new post on the Spotify for Artists blog outlines updates to the Spotify Ad Studio feature where clients will get access to a new set of streaming conversion metrics that can show how users on the service’s free tier respond to their audio ads. “How many people who heard your ad checked out your music on […]
The post Spotify Ad Studio adds advanced streaming conversion metrics appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

XITE launches new music video platform in US

Launching initially in the US, XITE (pron: “Excite”) is a new music video app that will be available on Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV and Comcast X1 Xfinity – and it will be coming soon to Roku. It has deals in place with all the majors as well as a number of indies and will offer […]
The post XITE launches new music video platform in US appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube Music hits 3m downloads in one week in India

The top bosses at YouTube, including CEO Susan Wojcicki and global head of music Lyor Cohen, are in India to mark the launch of YouTube Music there, announcing the app has been downloaded 3m times in its first week. (In comparison, Spotify said 1m people had signed up for the service during the first week […]
The post YouTube Music hits 3m downloads in one week in India appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UMG licenses to uduX, a new Nigerian music streaming service

Yesterday we reported on music streaming service Boomplay raising $20m to expand across the African continent having signed a licensing deal with Warner Music Group last month. Now uduX, a new streaming service based in Nigeria, has signed its first licensing deal with a major label – Universal Music Group. (UMG was also the first […]
The post UMG licenses to uduX, a new Nigerian music streaming service appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok and the new value gap as labels demand “hundreds of millions” – report

In yesterday’s bulletin, we covered the arrival of Spotlight, a new initiative on TikTok designed to help break new acts from South Korea and Japan on the short-form video platform. We wondered then if royalties were being paid on music used this way and what rightsholders would make of it all. We didn’t have to […]
The post TikTok and the new value gap as labels demand “hundreds of millions” – report appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The Chris Bevington Foundation aims to transform lives through music

Two years ago, Chris Bevington – Spotify’s director of global partnerships and business development – was one of four people tragically killed in a terrorist attack in Stockholm city centre. A further 15 people were injured in the incident. The Chris Bevington Foundation has been set up in memory of Chris with the aim of […]
The post The Chris Bevington Foundation aims to transform lives through music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Australia passes tougher social media laws in wake of NZ terrorist attacks

In the wake of the white supremacist terrorist atrocity in Christchurch, New Zealand, last month in which 50 people were killed and 50 more were injured, the Australian government has passed strict new laws around the type of content that can be streamed on social media channels. This was in response to the terrorist in […]
The post Australia passes tougher social media laws in wake of NZ terrorist attacks appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo under investigation over online gaming subscriptions

The Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) in the UK is investigating how three major companies – Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo – are handling renewals for their online gaming services. The CMA will look at the T&Cs they offer users alongside how they process subscription cancellations and refunds. At the heart of this is the issue […]
The post Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo under investigation over online gaming subscriptions appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Lizzo and Jameela Jamil talk body positivity on Instagram

Actor and activist Jameela Jamil has interviewed Lizzo – creator of some of the greatest singles of 2019 so far – about issues around body positivity on Instagram. Jamil has been using her social media presence to call out advertisers and creators of “quick diet” “remedies” who use body shaming to sell their dubious products. […]
The post Lizzo and Jameela Jamil talk body positivity on Instagram appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok wants to break new acts via Spotlight

TikTok, the short-form video app that has been downloaded over 1bn times to make it the new centre of gravity in the meme world, is looking to court new acts and help break them on the platform. Its new Spotlight feature allows artists to digitally audition for the company and the successful ones will be put in […]
The post TikTok wants to break new acts via Spotlight appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Polyglot marketing: streaming’s many and varied global battle lines

The IFPI’s global sales figures for 2018 were, once again, all about streaming driving the industry’s recovery. The overall market was up 9.7% (both downloads and physical declined sharply), while streaming jumped 34% and now makes up 46.9% of revenues globally. The jostling for dominance in this booming market is something that will continue apace, […]
The post Polyglot marketing: streaming’s many and varied global battle lines appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Legacy Entertainment Ventures wants to turn stars into VCs

We’ve become used to musicians investing in startups, and not just as individual angel investors either. Snoop Dogg, Nas and Linkin Park are among the artists who’ve set up proper venture capitalist vehicles. Now US VC firm Loud Capital wants to help more celebrities, from musicians to esports stars and influencers, turn investor. It has launched […]
The post Legacy Entertainment Ventures wants to turn stars into VCs appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Snapchat gets the Bitmoji Party party started

Talking of Snapchat… the social app has created its first multi-player game, Bitmoji Party. It is part of its Snap Games arm and will be one of six planned games – the other five being created by third-party developers and exclusive to the app. Players compete against friends across a series of mini games and […]
The post Snapchat gets the Bitmoji Party party started appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Instagram is pinching Snapchat’s users in the UK

OK, it’s only one country, but the numbers from eMarketer are still interesting and tap into the issue of just how sustainable multi-platforming is in social media. The research company is saying this year will be the first since its launch that Snapchat user numbers in the UK will decline, calling it an “exodus” and […]
The post Instagram is pinching Snapchat’s users in the UK appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

2019 Midem Artist Accelerator finalists revealed

Midem’s Midem Artist Accelerator competition is now in its fifth year and it has revealed the names of this year’s finalists. They are: Acido Pantera (an EDM act from Colombia); Alexander Oscar (a pop act from Denmark); Anya (ditto); Blanche (a pop act from Belgium); Bo Bingen (a rock/alternative act from Japan/UK); Dalex (an urban […]
The post 2019 Midem Artist Accelerator finalists revealed appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Despite growth, music labels warn: ‘We should never be complacent’

Four consistent years of global growth is something to swell the record industry’s heart, and the 9.7% rise in 2018 means it is approaching double-digit growth – a big change from the double-digit decline that defined the first decade of this millennium.
There’s an increasing focus on the role that emerging markets – or ‘high-potential markets’ as the IFPI now calls them – may play for the industry in the coming years. But that’s tied in to other issues that labels are still keen to address.
The spectre of the value gap hung over the IFPI’s Global Music Report and press conference this morning, as it has done for the past few years, but the name ‘YouTube’ was not mentioned directly. Instead, it was the elephant in the room.
The post Despite growth, music labels warn: ‘We should never be complacent’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Vevo’s JP Evangelista: ‘Music videos are competing against everything’

Last May, Vevo announced that it was going to phase out its owned-and-operated website and mobile apps, focusing instead on being a distributor for music videos and selling ads around that content.
Vevo.com still exists but mainly as a glorified holding page, with users being pointed instead to youtube.com/vevo where the company has more than 18m subscribers.
JP Evangelista is Vevo’s head of content and programming, a job he took over in March 2018, having been with the company since its inception back in 2009.
The post Vevo’s JP Evangelista: ‘Music videos are competing against everything’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TV, games, esports… lessons from outside the music-industry bubble

Panels where people from the music industry talk about the music industry in front of people from the music industry are obviously useful in terms of exchanging ideas and taking the temperature of the business.
But equally it is important – especially in an age of discovery algorithms, big data, targeted marketing, in-app revenue opportunities and the long tail – to look outside of the music industry to understand how other businesses are dealing with disruption and finding their place in the attention economy.
The post TV, games, esports… lessons from outside the music-industry bubble appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Music-streaming in the Middle East: ‘There is a space and place for everyone’

Spotify and Deezer’s recent launches in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) have highlighted the region’s status as a strategic priority for the music industry – although these companies (and Apple Music) are facing strong competition from local streaming service Anghami.
Trends in the MENA region were the focus for a panel session at Music Ally and Music Biz’s NY:LON Connect conference in London today. Speakers included Eddy Maroun, co-founder of Anghami; Moe Hamzeh, MD of Warner Music Middle East; Liliana Abudalo, manager of music content partnerships, Middle East, at Google and YouTube; and Habib Achour, head of Africa and Middle East at Sacem. Music Biz’s Bill Wilson chaired.
In setting up the discussion, Hamzeh talked of the importance of understanding the rich complexity of the region, with its many cultures, languages and dialects. A flat and uniform approach across the Middle East, then, will not pay off.
The post Music-streaming in the Middle East: ‘There is a space and place for everyone’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Downtown Music boss: ‘Music is everywhere… Music licensing tries to keep up’

From songwriters suing streaming services to big-bucks catalogue acquisitions, the music-publishing world has made plenty of headlines in recent years.
Downtown Music Publishing CEO Justin Kalifowitz suggested that publishing is “the biggest piece of the pie” for most musicians and that it is seeing “stable and steady growth in established markets”. But, however, he felt that there were plenty of areas where things could be improved and revenues increased.
Kalifowitz was speaking at Music Ally and Music Biz’s NY:LON Connect conference in London today, where he gave the ‘publishing keynote’ speech.
The post Downtown Music boss: ‘Music is everywhere… Music licensing tries to keep up’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Global music-streaming: ‘For growth you have to look outside of the Western markets’

Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon may dominate many of the discussions about music-streaming, but there is more to the global streaming market than the biggest players.
A strand at Music Ally and Music Biz’s NY:LON Connect conference in London today explored life beyond the big beasts, although it started with Nielsen Music’s VP global Helena Kosinski providing a global overview of streaming.
The IFPI, she said, is claiming that “music is a growth industry once more”, seeing 41% YOY growth. “It is actual money,” she argued, “and not just streams.”
The post Global music-streaming: ‘For growth you have to look outside of the Western markets’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

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