Author: Stuart Dredge

Vimeo’s latest funding round values the company at $5bn

We last wrote about video streaming service Vimeo in November 2020, when it raised $150m in a new funding round, as parent company IAC mulled a spin-off for the service. Now the company is turning to investors again, raising another round of $300m which IAC said values Vimeo at more than $5bn. In fact, it quantified the ‘more’ […]
The post Vimeo’s latest funding round values the company at $5bn appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Label Big Dada relaunches with new focus on minority communities

Independent label Ninja Tune’s Big Dada subsidiary already has a strong reputation for its hip-hop releases, but now it is relaunching with a new mission statement. Big Dada will now be “run by Black, POC & Minority Ethnic people for Black, POC & Minority Ethnic artists” – the company provided a “for lack of a better […]
The post Label Big Dada relaunches with new focus on minority communities appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

African music accounts for 70% of streams on Boomplay service

Streaming service Boomplay’s MD East Africa Martha Huro was one of the speakers at the NY:LON Connect conference yesterday, in an MQA-hosted session on opportunities for regional DSPs. She offered insight into trends on the pan-African streaming service. “70% of our total streams come from African content,” she said, adding that this guides Boomplay’s strategy […]
The post African music accounts for 70% of streams on Boomplay service appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify and Apple show narrative ambition with new audio stories

There is more to non-music audio than podcasts, as we’ve been pointing out recently. The latest proof comes from Spotify and Apple, with their latest content experiments. Spotify has released nine new audiobooks on its service. Well, we say ‘new’ – they are all classic, public-domain books – ‘Great Expectations’, ‘Jane Eyre’, ‘Frankenstein’ etc – but brand new recordings […]
The post Spotify and Apple show narrative ambition with new audio stories appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

PRS Foundation launches ‘Power Up’ anti-racism initiative

PRS Foundation is hoping to follow the success of its Keychange initiative, which supports underrepresented genders in the music industry, with a new movement tackling anti-Black racism. It’s called ‘Power Up’, and is launching as a partnership with YouTube Music, Beggars Group and the Black Music Coalition, with the backing of a number of industry […]
The post PRS Foundation launches ‘Power Up’ anti-racism initiative appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UTA’s David Zedeck: livestreaming will be a ‘virtual balcony’

The NY:LON Connect conference that we co-run with Music Biz kicked off its first online edition yesterday with a track on the future of live and livestreaming, including a keynote interview with UTA partner and global head of music David Zedeck, conducted by Billboard’s Taylor Mims. He talked about how he sees livestreaming’s future once […]
The post UTA’s David Zedeck: livestreaming will be a ‘virtual balcony’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG teams up with FMG for Adaptr startups licensing platform

Warner Music Group has teamed up with Feed Media Group – the company behind B2B music firm Feed.fm – to launch an initiative that aims to make it easier for startups to license music.
It’s called Adaptr, and its core is a pre-licensed library of music for developers to use in their apps, for which they’ll pay a subscription fee.
WMG is the launch partner with both recorded music and publishing rights, although BMG Records, Equal Vision Records, Vio Mobile and A-Train Distribution are also part of Adaptr.
The project includes APIs and SDKs to help developers use the pre-cleared music, as well as curation tools. The announcement promises that “rightsholders are paid for every stream” from the resulting apps and services.
The post WMG teams up with FMG for Adaptr startups licensing platform appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Clubhouse has 2m users, new funding and plans for ‘creators’

In our world, chatter about ‘audio’ tends to focus on podcasts, and music streaming services’ drive into that form of content. However, there’s a wider audio trend getting Silicon Valley excited, and Clubhouse is one of the main reasons. It’s the service once described as “a mashup of Spotify, Zoom and even the X Factor“, […]
The post Clubhouse has 2m users, new funding and plans for ‘creators’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok’s new creator portal has tips for TikTokers old and new

There’s a long history of video and social media platforms building detailed ‘playbooks’ – resources teaching the people using their services how to build audiences and make good stuff. TikTok is no different: it has just revamped its educational materials with the launch of the TikTok Creator Portal. Aimed at creators old and new, it promises best-practice […]
The post TikTok’s new creator portal has tips for TikTokers old and new appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Nigerian musicians await resolution in battle of the PROs

In January 2019 during a panel on Africa’s music industries at NY:LON Connect, Chocolate City group’s Aibee Abidoye talked about one of the challenges in Nigeria: competing collecting societies causing confusion in the market – including giving broadcasters an excuse for avoiding paying royalties for music usage. Are things looking any more settled two years on? This […]
The post Nigerian musicians await resolution in battle of the PROs appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Indian music company Saregama reports latest financials

Saregama is one of the Indian media firms focusing on both music and films – and, indeed, music for/from films. Its latest financial results reveal that the business is holding up despite the Covid-19 pandemic’s effects on India’s movie industries. Saregama’s quarterly revenues were up by 7% year-on-year to 134.6 crore rupees (around $18.5m) even though its […]
The post Indian music company Saregama reports latest financials appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sea shanties singer Nathan Evans gets a major label deal

As we write this story, Scottish artist Nathan Evans is on course for a top 10 hit in the UK with ‘Wellerman’ – his sea-shanty cover that took TikTok by storm. There’s an obligatory heartwarming story about him giving up his job as a postman for a career in music. But behind this, there’s an industry move: Evans […]
The post Sea shanties singer Nathan Evans gets a major label deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Buying catalogues is a sprint, but managing them is a marathon

It’s easy to buy a catalogue of songs – well, it is if you have the money, obviously – but the challenge of managing them well to grow revenues is an important challenge. “Marketing is absolutely at the core of future success for song catalogues, even if lucky random breaks will continue to happen thanks to […]
The post Buying catalogues is a sprint, but managing them is a marathon appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Native Instruments sells majority stake to Francisco Partners

By the end of 2020, Native Instruments had more than 1.5 million monthly active users of its products for making music and DJing. This, plus the wider buzz around music creation technology, has been making investors’ ears prick up. Native Instruments’ majority owner is an investment company called EMH Partners, which bought in to NI […]
The post Native Instruments sells majority stake to Francisco Partners appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Bob Dylan’s catalogue sale sparks lawsuit over co-writes

Where there’s money, there are invariably lawsuits. There’s certainly money in musicians selling their catalogues and royalty interests to investment companies, and lo and behold, there are lawsuits popping up as a result. Bob Dylan is facing one, after selling his song catalogue to Universal Music Group in December. Billboard reported on the lawsuit from the […]
The post Bob Dylan’s catalogue sale sparks lawsuit over co-writes appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

British artists criticise UK government over Brexit mess

Musicians in the UK are still angry about the lack of a deal to help them avoid increased costs and red tape when touring Europe, after Brexit. A number of them have written an open letter to the British government lambasting its failure to reach an agreement with the EU on this point. “British musicians, dancers, actors […]
The post British artists criticise UK government over Brexit mess appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK’s music streaming economics inquiry publishes written evidence

If you had the metaphorical (or, indeed, literal) popcorn out on Tuesday for the latest sessions in the UK parliamentary inquiry into the economics of music streaming… well, perhaps grab a few more bags now and settle in for the day.
The committee behind the inquiry has just published all the written evidence submitted by musicians, industry bodies and other interested parties. You can browse through it here.
We’re going to be rooting through the submissions and drawing out the most interesting arguments made, and will be updating this post with our findings.
The post UK’s music streaming economics inquiry publishes written evidence appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Netflix shares soar as video services passes 200m subscribers

Netflix ended 2020 with 203.7 million paying subscribers, according to its latest financial results. The company added 8.5 million net paid members in the final quarter of the year, and 37 million in 2020 as a whole – a record for Netflix. The video streaming service generated $6.64bn of revenues in Q4, and a net profit […]
The post Netflix shares soar as video services passes 200m subscribers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify users created more than 12k new sea shanty playlists

Why are sea shanties so popular on TikTok and streaming services right now? Wait for it… Because they arrrrrrrrr! With #ShantyTok establishing itself as 2021’s first unexpected social/streaming music trend, Spotify has revealed some stats on how sea shanties are catching on with its listeners. The company says that its users have created more than […]
The post Spotify users created more than 12k new sea shanty playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BBTV says its music video content gets 391m monthly viewers

BBTV is one of the companies that works with music artists and channels to boost their YouTube performance: clients include mtheory (Major Lazer included); Future Classic (Flume included) and 21 Savage. Now the company has published its latest stats on how its roster of channels and videos is doing on YouTube. It claims that in […]
The post BBTV says its music video content gets 391m monthly viewers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Smart speakers startup Syng hires Rio Caraeff ahead of launch

We wrote about Syng in May 2020: it was a startup founded by former Apple design team member Christopher Stringer, which was planning to launch its own smart speaker and subscription service. The company is still working on those first products, but as launch nears, it has made a significant hire: former Vevo and Magic Leap […]
The post Smart speakers startup Syng hires Rio Caraeff ahead of launch appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Call for entries: Midemlab 2021 music startups contest

Music tech startups! It’s that time of year again: when industry conference Midem opens the applications process for its Midemlab startups contest. It’s the competition’s 14th year, and as ever Music Ally is delighted to be one of the selecting partners (alongside Panache Ventures and The Lynk) who’ll be rummaging through the applicants to pick […]
The post Call for entries: Midemlab 2021 music startups contest appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Wave is shutting down its VR app to focus ‘outside headsets’

Wave started life as a virtual reality music startup, with an app hosting VR raves. In recent times, it has pivoted to become more of a production tool: artists like The Weeknd have used it to turn their livestreams into hybrid video/animation events, to be broadcast on bigger social and video platforms. Now Wave is […]
The post Wave is shutting down its VR app to focus ‘outside headsets’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Live Nation makes its livestreaming move with Veeps deal

If you needed a sign that livestreaming is likely to sit side-by-side with physical concerts even once the latter return at scale, how about Live Nation buying a majority stake in a livestreaming startup? That happened yesterday, as the live giant bought in to Veeps, the company founded by musicians Joel and Benji Madden of Good […]
The post Live Nation makes its livestreaming move with Veeps deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Major labels gave evidence to the UK’s music streaming economics inquiry… so what did we learn?

It’s actually pretty rare to get genuine smoking-gun ‘gotchas’ from political inquiries in the moment.
When they work well, it’s more about patient, forensic questioning that elicits genuinely enlightening answers – and sometimes quotes that later come back to haunt the speaker.
Did we get that from this morning’s sessions at the UK parliamentary inquiry into music streaming’s economics? Yes and no.
There were some very well-briefed questions for the three major labels’ UK bosses that got to the heart of some of the key issues in the debate about musicians and streaming income… and there were some moments that made me want to bang my head against the desk.
Sometimes unfairly, perhaps. When one MP asked labels why there’s no collective licensing for recordings literally right after taking evidence from recordings collective licensor PPL, they probably just forgot to include ‘for streaming’ in their question.
And when PRS for Music’s boss seemed to be avoiding answering a question about whether a lack of competition is stifling innovation – a topic raised in the collecting society’s own written submission to the hearing – it may have simply been a misunderstanding of the question.
And when the boss of the world’s biggest major label’s UK arm seems to come out in favour of user-centric licensing while slamming the recommendation algorithms of streaming services, but the questioners don’t follow up on either… Well actually, that IS worth an enthusiastic head/desk bang.
Having watched the whole morning: one session with PPL and PRS, and another with the majors, here are some of the key points made. You can also read our report on the first session of the inquiry, which explored the views of the Broken Record campaign, here.
The post Major labels gave evidence to the UK’s music streaming economics inquiry… so what did we learn? appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Laura Marling livestream to be rebroadcast as ticketed event

Last summer, Laura Marling sold 6,500 tickets for her two livestreamed shows from the Union Chapel venue in London: one of the first examples of a ticketed livestream utilising that kind of performance space during the Covid-19 pandemic. Now her team is experimenting again: exploring how much replay value there is in those original concerts. On 31 […]
The post Laura Marling livestream to be rebroadcast as ticketed event appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG strikes deal with Punjabi music firm Sky Digital India

As India’s music streaming market grows, so the western major labels continue to seek out partners to grow their foothold there. The latest example is Warner Music Group’s new distribution agreement with Sky Digital India, an aggregator of Punjabi music from more than 42 Indian labels, as well as running a collection of Punjabi music […]
The post WMG strikes deal with Punjabi music firm Sky Digital India appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Scruff of the Neck launches live music shows on Twitch

British live music promoter Scruff of the Neck is trying out a new business model on livestreaming service Twitch. It’s launching a channel called Scruff of the Neck TV, which will be airing three-hour shows with live music performances, with 10 planned this month before settling into a schedule of performances, podcasts and artist interviews from […]
The post Scruff of the Neck launches live music shows on Twitch appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Feat guide offers anti-touting tips for agents and promoters

Ticket touting has dropped out of the music industry headlines over the last nine months – unsurprisingly, given that in many countries there aren’t many tickets to tout due to the Covid-19 pandemic. But as the live industry continues its preparations for a return at scale (hopefully) later this year, so the murkier side of secondary […]
The post Feat guide offers anti-touting tips for agents and promoters appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Publishers and PROs ‘disappointed’ as US consent decrees are unchanged

The US Justice Department has decided to leave the ‘consent decrees’ governing public performances of music unchanged, sparking an unimpressed response from publishers and collecting societies there. This is the legislation that means Ascap and BMI have to license their entire catalogue of music for public performance by any company that requests it. Both PROs […]
The post Publishers and PROs ‘disappointed’ as US consent decrees are unchanged appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Bicep turn their ‘Isles’ artwork into an Instagram filter

The latest artist to turn their artwork into a whizzy Instagram filter is Bicep. Signed to Ninja Tune, their new album ‘Isles’ comes out on 22 January, with the filter launching ahead of it – tap on this link from your phone to try it. It’s not just a fun effect though: fans creating videos with it […]
The post Bicep turn their ‘Isles’ artwork into an Instagram filter appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK and European Comission disagree over who’s to blame for Brexit music woes

While musicians in the UK and Europe fret about the Brexit deal’s impact on touring, the British government and European Commission are arguing about who’s fault it is. “We sought a mutually beneficial agreement that would have allowed performers to continue working and perform across the continent without the need for work permits. Musicians, artists, […]
The post UK and European Comission disagree over who’s to blame for Brexit music woes appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report: global startups funding grew by 4% in 2020 to $300bn

We’ve written a lot about what the Covid-19 pandemic meant for the music industry, but what about the wider tech world – and funding for startups in particular? CrunchBase has published its annual review of the figures. It claims that global venture funding grew by 4% year-on-year to $300bn in 2020, and then breaks this […]
The post Report: global startups funding grew by 4% in 2020 to $300bn appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UMG signs music licensing deal with fitness service Variis

Variis isn’t a fitness startup as such: it’s a fitness app launched last March by Equinox Media, owner of a chain of gyms in the US. The app works with a Peloton-style connected exercise bike, which costs $2,500, and provides video lessons from instructors. Now, like Peloton, Variis is signing licensing deals with major music labels. […]
The post UMG signs music licensing deal with fitness service Variis appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Tencent Music could raise $3.5bn from secondary offering

Chinese digital music giant Tencent Music went public in 2018 with an IPO on the New York Stock Exchange. Now, however, the company may be preparing a secondary offering in Hong Kong that could raise up to $3.5bn. That’s according to Nikkei Asia, which suggested that TME’s plans are part of a trend for Chinese companies that are […]
The post Tencent Music could raise $3.5bn from secondary offering appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sonos Radio is the third most-streamed service on its devices

The latest musicians to curate channels on Sonos Radio were announced yesterday: D’Angelo, FKA Twigs, Björk and the Chemical Brothers are the latest artists to turn DJ for the hardware firm’s streaming service. But another detail in the announcement caught our eye: the fact that Sonos Radio is now “the third most streamed service on Sonos”. That’s […]
The post Sonos Radio is the third most-streamed service on its devices appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report claims Twitch viewing hours grew by 83% in 2020

Video streaming industry firm StreamElements has published its latest report on the state of the livestreaming market, using data from analytics firm Arsenal·gg. Among the claims: that Twitch saw its viewing hours grow by 83%, from 9bn hours in 2019 to 17bn in 2020. The report also suggests that in December 2020 alone, people watched Twitch […]
The post Report claims Twitch viewing hours grew by 83% in 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Expect more rows in 2021 over platform moderation of podcasts

Hot Pod News founder Nicholas Quah is one of the sharpest analysts of the podcasting industry, so his ‘2021 Year in Preview‘ post is well worth a read. Among its predictions: more moderation rows ahead over the content of podcasts made available through big platforms like Spotify and Apple Podcasts. “I have a strong feeling […]
The post Expect more rows in 2021 over platform moderation of podcasts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The latest unexpected TikTok trend is… sea shanties?

“Soon may the Wellerman come, to bring us sugar and tea and rum…” In a day of news with plenty of worries for our industry – Brexit, concert cancellations etc – here’s some light relief: the latest music craze on TikTok is sea shanties. A growing number of TikTokers are singing traditional sailors’ songs, often […]
The post The latest unexpected TikTok trend is… sea shanties? appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Aim calls for UK / EU cooperation to resolve Brexit mess

Anger is still reverberating around the British music industry about the costs and red tape musicians will face touring in Europe following Brexit. News that Brits running training seminars on the continent wouldn’t need a permit spurred artist Tim Burgess to note that “setting up The Charlatans Business Consultancy Inc – where people buy tickets and I sing […]
The post Aim calls for UK / EU cooperation to resolve Brexit mess appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The 1975 cancel all their scheduled concerts for 2021

Remember the days, in March last year, when concerts and festivals were being postponed to the autumn? Those were optimistic times. Live music is coming back in a number of countries that have Covid-19 under control, but in many major music markets it’s still unclear whether autumn *this* year will be possible for concerts at […]
The post The 1975 cancel all their scheduled concerts for 2021 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Shakira and KT Tunstall sell stakes in their music catalogues

Two more musicians are selling their rights – or at least part of them – to investment companies. Shakira is the latest to throw in her lot with Hipgnosis Songs Fund, which has acquired 100% of her music publishing rights for her entire catalogue of 145 songs. “One of the most serious and successful songwriters […]
The post Shakira and KT Tunstall sell stakes in their music catalogues appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Social app Parler faces app store removals and partner pullouts

“Ban him @discogs, just in case,” from musician Damon Krukowski was one of the tweets that raised a smile after Twitter and a host of other social and video platforms banned or suspended US president Donald Trump’s accounts. The crackdown en masse by mainstream platforms also sparked debate about where Trump and his supporters will move, online-wise. […]
The post Social app Parler faces app store removals and partner pullouts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sony unveils its first 360 Reality Audio smart speakers

Sony’s consumer electronics arm has been showing off its new smart speakers, which are its first to use the company’s 360 Reality Audio format. They do stick to some Sony traditions though: numberwangtastic product names: the SRS-RA5000 and SRS-RA3000 will be launching in the next couple of months. Both devices will offer a choice of voice […]
The post Sony unveils its first 360 Reality Audio smart speakers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Primavera-funded study explores Covid-safe concert measures

A study commissioned by Spanish festival Primavera Sound has offered some pointers to the kind of safety measures that could be used at concerts when they start to return later this year. A gig at an indoors venue for 463 people who’d been tested (negative!) on the same day for Covid-19 took place on 12 […]
The post Primavera-funded study explores Covid-safe concert measures appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK recorded music market grew by 6.8% to £1.55bn in 2020

We reported last week on industry body the BPI’s report that music consumption grew by 8.2% in the UK last year. Now we have some revenue figures to set alongside that, courtesy of the Entertainment Retailers Association (Era). It claims that Brits spent £1.55bn on music across physical sales, download sales and streaming subscriptions in 2020, up by […]
The post UK recorded music market grew by 6.8% to £1.55bn in 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

SiriusXM writes down Pandora value by $1bn citing royalties

US satellite radio firm SiriusXM has revealed that it is writing down the value of Pandora, its music streaming subsidiary, by around $1bn. The news came in SiriusXM’s announcement to investors of its expectations for 2021 under newly-installed CEO Jennifer Witz. “In connection with its annual impairment assessment of goodwill and other indefinite-lived intangible assets, the company […]
The post SiriusXM writes down Pandora value by $1bn citing royalties appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK music industry enraged by post-Brexit touring revelation

“Immigration arrangements for members of the armed forces, musicians and other performers are completely unchanged, and those routes will operate as they do now,” said the UK’s home secretary Priti Patel in February 2020, during a parliamentary debate on plans for a new points-based immigration system after the UK Brexited from the European Union. 11 months […]
The post UK music industry enraged by post-Brexit touring revelation appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report: games and interactive media made $139.9bn in 2020

It isn’t news that the games industry is now much bigger than the recorded music industry, and rather than that getting us down, it should fuel our excitement about the potential collaborations between the two industries. Some new figures on exactly how big the games market is are out this week from research firm SuperData. Its […]
The post Report: games and interactive media made $139.9bn in 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Facebook redesigns pages with focus on followers over likes

How many likes does your top artist’s or company’s Facebook page have? Who cares?! At least, that’s one of the messages coming from Facebook’s latest redesign of how its pages look and work. “We are removing Likes and focusing on Followers to simplify the way people connect with their favorite Pages,” explained Facebook in a blog […]
The post Facebook redesigns pages with focus on followers over likes appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple hails Apple Music’s ‘record year’ (without user figure)

It’s our strong suspicion that Apple Music will soon have more than 100 million paying users, and that Apple is waiting for that milestone before updating its official stat from the 60 million figure it revealed in June 2019. If so, that’s why a new users stat is missing from Apple’s announcement reviewing its services’ performance in […]
The post Apple hails Apple Music’s ‘record year’ (without user figure) appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Hunter Walk’s ‘creator wellness’ ideas apply to music too

Former YouTube executive Hunter Walk, who’s now an investor, has published an interesting article with some suggestions for dealing with ‘creator burnout’ on platforms like Instagram, YouTube and TikTok. We think it may have some useful ideas for the music industry too, where many artists feel like they’re on a similar algorithm-driven treadmill of content creation. “What’s […]
The post Hunter Walk’s ‘creator wellness’ ideas apply to music too appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Roblox raises $520m funding round from investors including WMG

Gaming platform Roblox was all set to go public in late 2020, before putting off its IPO until this year to give more time to decide how to price it. Now the company has sprung a surprise with a new funding round of $520m – its Series H round – valuing Roblox at $29.5bn. The round was led by VC […]
The post Roblox raises $520m funding round from investors including WMG appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Cameo sold 1.3m videos in 2020, with revenues of $100m

Another Covid-19 pandemic trend has been a flood of celebrities joining Cameo, the service set up for fans to pay their favourite (or comically obscure) stars to record video messages for their friends, family or colleagues. Now Cameo has revealed some stats on what this meant for its business in 2020. According to Axios, Cameo sold […]
The post Cameo sold 1.3m videos in 2020, with revenues of $100m appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Swedish startup Staccs preps music concerts streaming service

A lot has been written about the growth of livestreamed music performances during the Covid-19 pandemic – including some shows that were pre-recorded. Meanwhile, some artists and labels with archives of past concerts have been exploring YouTube as a way to keep fans entertained, including using its premieres feature to turn them into social events. Now […]
The post Swedish startup Staccs preps music concerts streaming service appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Neil Young sells 50% of his song catalogue to Hipgnosis

The first few working days of 2021 have been a powerful statement of intent for Hipgnosis Songs Fund, albeit a pretty blistering one for its corporate wallet. Hot on the heels of its deals with Jimmy Iovine and Lindsey Buckingham, today the company has announced a swoop for Neil Young’s songs catalogue. Well, 50% of […]
The post Neil Young sells 50% of his song catalogue to Hipgnosis appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK Music sets its sights on summer for live music’s return

We’ll be avoiding generalisations about Covid-19 and live music this year: in countries whose governments have dealt with the epidemic decisively and effectively, concerts are already coming back. In others… that’s not the case. Talking of which: UK Music has published a report targeting this summer for the restarting of the UK’s live music industry. Accompanied […]
The post UK Music sets its sights on summer for live music’s return appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Investment firm Shuaa Capital buys stake in Anghami

Early last year, there were rumours that Middle Eastern streaming service Anghami might be up for sale, fresh from generating more than 10bn streams in 2019. A year on, and Anghami remains independent, but it is raising money. Dubai-based investment firm Shuaa Capital has taken a stake in Anghami, although the terms of the transaction have yet […]
The post Investment firm Shuaa Capital buys stake in Anghami appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Charli D’Amelio is first TikTok star to reach 100m followers

TikTok has its first nine-figure star this morning, with Charli D’Amelio becoming the first TikToker to reach more than 100 million followers on the platform.
What’s even more startling is the fact that she only joined TikTok in the spring of 2019, so that audience has been built in just over a year and a half.
D’Amelio is the platform’s biggest star by far: second-placed Addison Rae has 69.9 million followers at the time of writing.
The post Charli D’Amelio is first TikTok star to reach 100m followers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple’s AR team hints at ‘devices that may exist tomorrow’

Apple has been doing a lot of work around augmented reality technology with its iPhone and iPad software and ARKit developer tools, but rumours that the company might be working on a full-blown AR headset persist.
An interview with the company’s AR team by CNET offers a little more fuel for that fire. “AR has enormous potential to be helpful to folks in their lives across devices that exist today, and devices that may exist tomorrow, but we’ve got to make sure that it is successful,” said Mike Rockwell, head of AR at Apple – with the ‘may exist tomorrow’ line getting the bloggers hot and bothered.
The post Apple’s AR team hints at ‘devices that may exist tomorrow’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BPI launches a new Membership Inclusion Programme

British industry body the BPI is trying to expand its membership, particularly from labels and music companies owned by people from “underrepresented” communities in the current industry.
That means “women, people from a Black, Asian or Minority Ethnic background, people with disabilities, or those who identify as LGBTQIA+” according to the body, which is offering 20 free full year-long memberships with an application process running to 10 December.
The post BPI launches a new Membership Inclusion Programme appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Audoo raises £5.2m from investors including Björn Ulvaeus

British startup Audoo has raised a Series A funding round of £5.2m (around $6.9m) to continue developing and rollout out its technology to track public performance usage of music.
The round was raised in 10 weeks from investors including Edinv, Björn Ulvaeus and Tileyard London. The funding follows Audoo’s win at the Midemlab startups contest earlier this summer.
The company makes an ‘audio meter’ that, once installed in a public venue (for example a gym, cafe or pub) tracks the music being played, and feeds that data back to collecting societies.
The post Audoo raises £5.2m from investors including Björn Ulvaeus appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

MMF chair sees ‘dangerous disconnect’ in streaming royalties

Tomorrow sees the first session in the UK Parliament’s inquiry into music streaming economics. Ahead of that, the chair of managers body the MMF, Paul Craig, has outlined his hopes for the inquiry, as well as his concerns about the current streaming environment.
He warned of a “dangerous disconnect” between the streaming-fuelled growth of the recorded music industry, and the struggles being faced by artists.
“The way in which DSP licensing deals and label contracts are constructed means too few have a stake in its financial success,” wrote Craig.
The post MMF chair sees ‘dangerous disconnect’ in streaming royalties appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Snap acquires music-focused short-video app Voisey

Snapchat’s music ambitions just took another significant step forward, with parent company Snap seemingly having acquired startup Voisey, whose app is used to create and share original music videos.
We say ‘seemingly’ because neither company has yet commented, but the news – broken by Business Insider then followed up by TechCrunch – isn’t in doubt. Voisey’s four co-founders resigned as directors last month, replaced by two Snap executives, and the company’s official address is now Snap’s London office.
The news comes just three months after Snap announced music licensing deals with Warner Music Group, Warner Chappell, Universal Music Publishing, Merlin and a number of members of US publishing body the NMPA, and started testing a new feature letting people add music to their Snapchat posts.
The post Snap acquires music-focused short-video app Voisey appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple halves its App Store commission for small developers

Apple’s latest salvo to fend off anticompetition accusations is a reduction in its App Store Commission. Its 30% cut will now be reduced to 15% for any developer or small business with annual revenues of less than $1m. The new scheme will launch on 1 January, with Apple pitching it as meaning “small developers and aspiring entrepreneurs […]
The post Apple halves its App Store commission for small developers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify launches collection of original Christmas tracks

It’s Christmas season, and heaven knows we all need it after the year that 2020 has been. It’s no surprise to see Mariah Carey’s annual climb up various charts starting early: ‘All I Want For Christmas is You’ is currently 73rd in YouTube’s global chart. Pandora has kicked off its Christmas 2020 ‘digital celebration’ and Amazon Music already launched […]
The post Spotify launches collection of original Christmas tracks appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Artist Lil Yachty is launching his own cryptocurrency

Remember the heyday of the early blockchain+music hype, and visions of a future where successful artists would ‘tokenise’ themselves, with their own cryptocurrencies, with oodles of riches for everyone? Well, we’re still waiting for those oodles. Maybe Lil Yachty can provide them. He’s working with ‘social money platform’ Fyooz, which specialises in getting influencers and celebrities […]
The post Artist Lil Yachty is launching his own cryptocurrency appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Noisy is a Discord bot that generates AI music for groups

This feels like a very modern story: there’s now a bot for chat app Discord that will serve up AI-generated music in the style of Chopin, Lady Gaga or Frank Sinatra. People running a Discord channel can invite the bot – Noisy – to join to provide them with a soundtrack, using the MuseNet technology launched by tech firm […]
The post Noisy is a Discord bot that generates AI music for groups appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK’s streaming inquiry reveals first oral-evidence sessions

We reported last month on plans for a parliamentary inquiry in the UK into the economics of music streaming. Industry bodies, artists, DSPs and other interested parties have been submitting their evidence, and now we know who’s going to be offering their views at the first oral evidence hearing next Tuesday (24 November). The session will kick off with […]
The post UK’s streaming inquiry reveals first oral-evidence sessions appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music Awards return with big gong for Lil Baby

It’s nearly a year since Apple Music held its first awards, anointing Billie Eilish as its inaugural ‘global artist of the year’ with additional prizes for Lizzo and Lil Nas X. Now the awards have returned for a second year, with an announcement today to be followed by a week of performances and online content across Apple’s services […]
The post Apple Music Awards return with big gong for Lil Baby appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Instrumental launches a £10m fund for independent artists

Last month, data-driven A&R startup Instrumental announced that Tencent Music and Tencent Holdings had acquired a minority stake in the British company. Now it’s launching a new initiative in its homeland called the ‘Instrumental Music Fund’, with £10m to invest in independent artists that have been talent-spotted using its technology. “For some time, we have known […]
The post Instrumental launches a £10m fund for independent artists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Wixen Music Publishing sues Triller in $50m lawsuit

The latest copyright infringement lawsuit from Wixen Music Publishing promises to be a biggie: it’s suing Triller for $50m, alleging that it has infringed more than 1,000 songs from the company’s catalogue. Billboard has the details, including some pointed criticism of how Triller has been spending its money in recent months. “Instead of paying Wixen […]
The post Wixen Music Publishing sues Triller in $50m lawsuit appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Tencent Music invests in Wave and re-airs Billie Eilish livestream

These are two separate stories, but they both show Tencent Music’s growing focus on livestreaming. This morning TME announced a strategic partnership and minority equity investment in startup Wave, whose tech has been used for virtual concerts by the likes of The Weeknd, John Legend and Lindsey Stirling. The deal will enable TME to air […]
The post Tencent Music invests in Wave and re-airs Billie Eilish livestream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

SoundCloud adds profile verification and Rotor Videos deal

Bad news for anyone whose hobbies include masquerading as popular musicians on SoundCloud: the service is finally introducing proper blue-tick profile verification. Billie Eilish, Wiz Khalifa and Trippie Redd are among the first to get the checkmark, although SoundCloud turned the revealing of others into a day-long social marketing campaign with posts on its Instagram, Facebook […]
The post SoundCloud adds profile verification and Rotor Videos deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Vargas & Lagola team up with Spotify for livestream concert

Vargas & Lagola is the artist name of Swedish duo Vincent Pontare and Salem al Fakir, who recently released their second album ‘Mount Alda’. To promote it, they’re doing a livestreamed concert on 25 November, promising “a holistic experience, a visual journey, where we trigger all senses”. Which is nice, but what’s really interesting about it […]
The post Vargas & Lagola team up with Spotify for livestream concert appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TicketSwap and GoFundMe aim to raise £2m for European venues

We’ve written about the fundraising campaigns for independent venues run in the US (by NIVA) and the UK (by the Music Venue Trust). Now there’s a new pan-European campaign launched by ticketing firm TicketSwap, crowdfunding site GoFundMe and investment firm Cosimo. The trio are attempting to raise £2m (around $2.6m) across 14 countries to help out at […]
The post TicketSwap and GoFundMe aim to raise £2m for European venues appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BandLab adds ‘Sounds’ library of royalty-free music samples

There’s a decent business in selling beats, loops and samples to musicians – and growing appeal to artists and producers capable of producing that content. Splice paid out $11m in royalties to sound creators in the first nine months of 2020, while BeatStars reached $70m of lifetime payouts in April, then $85m in July. Now BandLab is […]
The post BandLab adds ‘Sounds’ library of royalty-free music samples appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Artist tools startup Tully expands its app with premium tiers

In April we wrote about Sony Music investing in a startup called Tully, founded by US artist Joyner Lucas, which had an app that was part distribution service, and part suite of tools for artists to manage both music creation and their business. Now Tully is expanding its offering with something called ‘Tully Platform’, including several tiers of […]
The post Artist tools startup Tully expands its app with premium tiers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify CFO says UMG is ‘willing to lean in more aggressively’ than rivals

Look away, non-Universal major labels: you may feel a little testy about the latest interview with Spotify CFO Paul Vogel, at a conference organised by RBC Capital Markets. He was asked about Spotify’s latest licensing deal with UMG, which includes access to tests of new marketing tools. “There’s nothing preventing the other labels from doing it, […]
The post Spotify CFO says UMG is ‘willing to lean in more aggressively’ than rivals appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Shazam reveals that it now has 200m monthly active users

The last time we had a figure for how many users Apple’s music-identification app Shazam had, it was 478 million annual active users in 2018. It’s not the most satisfying of metrics for gauging an app’s popularity, but thankfully there’s now an update. According to Apple, Shazam now has 200 million monthly active users. The company completed […]
The post Shazam reveals that it now has 200m monthly active users appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

New features for Twitter and Instagram: Fleets and Guides

Has it really taken this long for Twitter to copy the ‘stories’ format from, well, every other social app? It has. The company’s test of ‘fleets’, which was announced earlier this year, is now becoming a rolled-out feature. Fleets only last for 24 hours before auto-deleting, with profile bubbles at the top of the feed showing people […]
The post New features for Twitter and Instagram: Fleets and Guides appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube now has more than 2bn monthly music users

In mid-2018, YouTube said that more than one billion people visited it every month to consume music. Two and a half years later, that total has doubled to more than two billion.
The new milestone has been announced this afternoon in a blog post by YouTube’s global head of music Lyor Cohen, as YouTube launched its first audio advertising format.
“Music video streaming is quickly growing in popularity: More than 2 billion people come to YouTube each month to experience music,” wrote Cohen, as part of an argument that brands and their agencies should be spending more money with YouTube around music.
The post YouTube now has more than 2bn monthly music users appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

GitHub reinstates YouTube-DL project after RIAA takedown

GitHub is one of the most popular sites for developers in the world, hosting open source code and helping people manage their projects.
It’s also on a collision course with music rightsholders in the US, over a takedown notice sent to GitHub in October by industry body the RIAA focusing on a project called YouTube-DL – an open source repository that has been used by a number of sites and tools that enable YouTube videos to be downloaded.
The RIAA’s complaint pointed to the mention of specific music videos in YouTube-DL’s source code as evidence of its piratical uses, and GitHub duly took down the software. Until yesterday, when it put it back up again.
The post GitHub reinstates YouTube-DL project after RIAA takedown appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ticketing firm Eventbrite buys marketing platform ToneDen

We’ve written about ToneDen a few times in recent memory: for a profile of its social and streaming marketing tools in November 2019, for example, and then a story in June this year about its ‘StreamLinks’ feature offering smart links for livestreaming events.
Now the startup has been acquired by a company very much rooted in the live events world: ticketing firm Eventbrite.
“Our partnership started back in 2017 and has flourished over time. Eventbrite has consistently championed our efforts towards building a self-serve marketing solution that addressed the complex set of challenges event creators face,” announced a blog post by ToneDen.
The post Ticketing firm Eventbrite buys marketing platform ToneDen appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Unilad Sound is now an official Apple Music playlist curator

Earlier this month, we wrote about how online brand LadBible had put Craig David and KSI on people’s desks via an augmented reality music video.
Now another part of the LadBible empire, music community Unilad Sound, has announced a big partnership. It’s joining Apple Music as an official curator, initially with four flagship playlists.
‘Certified’ will feature guest artists choosing their favourite tracks, starting with Big Sean. ‘Rising’ will focus on rising artists and ‘Dat New New’ on brand new tracks.
Meanwhile, ‘In the Zone’ will be an activity-focused playlist: “An eclectic mix of contemporary and classic cuts ranging from hip hop, grime, rock, indie and instrumentals that will help our community power through work, nail studying or simply just concentrate on the matters at hand…”
The post Unilad Sound is now an official Apple Music playlist curator appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Queen join TikTok and make 10 tracks available to its users

We’ve had George Michael, Prince and John Lennon. Now TikTok’s collection of heritage artists has another entry: Queen. The British rock band now have an official TikTok profile, set up by their management with Universal Music Group/Hollywood Records.
What’s more, 10 Queen tracks have been made available for TikTokers to use in their own videos. Sensibly, it’s the obvious 10 to start with: ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’, ‘Another One Bites The Dust’, ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’, ‘We Will Rock You’, ‘Under Pressure’, ‘We Are The Champions’, ‘I Want to Break Free’, ‘Somebody to Love’, ‘Killer Queen’ and ‘Radio Ga Ga’.
There’s also a #SingWithQueen hashtag challenge encouraging TikTokers to (not so sensibly, given his famed range) pit their vocal skills against Lord Frederick of Lucan himself, Freddie Mercury.
The post Queen join TikTok and make 10 tracks available to its users appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BAPAM bursary scheme aims to support BAME musicians in UK

BAPAM is the British organisation that provides ‘performing arts medicine’ in the UK, supporting musicians and other performers in their physical and mental health.
Its latest initiative focuses on the latter for a specific group: Black, Asian and minority ethic (BAME) musicians. It’s a bursary scheme jointly funded by charity Help Musicians and collecting society PPL, which will award up to £3k per year of study to up to five people to train to become registered counsellors or psychotherapists.
“We know that the bond between therapist and client is often the most important factor in the effectiveness of therapy, and that for many Black, Asian and minority ethnic individuals in the performing arts, the lack of diversity among therapists can be a barrier to accessing services,” said BAPAM boss Claire Cordeaux.
The post BAPAM bursary scheme aims to support BAME musicians in UK appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Scooter Braun sells Taylor Swift catalogue to Shamrock Holdings

When Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings acquired Big Machine Label Group for around $300m in 2019, the deal included Taylor Swift’s back catalogue of recordings – something that made Swift furious given her ongoing disputes with Braun.
Nearly a year and a half on, Ithaca has sold those master rights to Swift’s first six albums on, in a deal that Variety suggested was “north of $350m” (and possibly as high as $450m after earn-backs).
It’s not a happy ending for Swift though: she tweeted out her take on the news last night, claiming that: a.) she balked at trying to buy the catalogue herself due to an “ironclad NDA stating I would never say another word about Scooter Braun unless it was positive”; b.) that the buyer is private equity company Shamrock Holdings (fresh from a recent $400m funding round for music acquisitions); and c.) that she did talk to Shamrock about working with the company, but “learned that under their terms Scooter Braun will continue to profit off my old musical catalog for many years” so declined.
The post Scooter Braun sells Taylor Swift catalogue to Shamrock Holdings appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

IFPI report breaks down music’s €81.9bn annual value for EU

As the music business scraps it out with every other industry for Covid-19 relief, a key part of its argument has been the economic value created by the industry. An aspect that’s at least well-rehearsed, since it is also deployed whenever the music industry is lobbying for changes to copyright legislation. The latest report commissioned by the IFPI will support both aims.
Published this morning, ‘The Economic Impact of Music in Europe’ is a collaboration with research firm Oxford Economics. The report claims that across the 27 EU member states plus the UK, the music sector supports two million jobs; contributes €81.9bn gross value added (GVA) annually to the 28 countries’ GDP; and has an export value of €9.7bn on top of that.
(“To put these into perspective, music’s economic contribution to the EU 28 was larger than the GDP of nine EU countries, and its music exports were even greater than those of its world-famous GI protected wines,” as IFPI boss Frances Moore put it in the foreword.)
The post IFPI report breaks down music’s €81.9bn annual value for EU appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Travis Scott and Lil Nas X hop on the PlayStation 5 bandwagon

Sony’s new PlayStation 5 console went on sale in some countries last week, with a wider rollout this week. Right from the earliest model, PlayStation marketing has often had strong ties with music, and the PS5 is no exception.
Already this month we’ve seen Travis Scott and Lil Nas X promoting the new console. Scott published a distinctly trippy ten-and-a-half minute video: ‘A Travis Scott + Cactus Jack Experience – PS5: Unboxing Reimagined’.
The post Travis Scott and Lil Nas X hop on the PlayStation 5 bandwagon appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Nominations open for SheSaid·so 2020 Alternative Power list

Every year, SheSaid·so publishes its Alternative Power list of people in the music business, as a more diverse version of the traditional industry power lists.
2020’s Alt List is open for nominations now, with a deadline of 22 November and a theme of ‘resilience and adaptability’.
According to the organisation, this is “an opportunity to celebrate those who, in facing extreme challenges brought by the 2020 pandemic(s), have not only succeeded in overcoming them but have also brought positivity to their community when they needed it the most”.
The post Nominations open for SheSaid·so 2020 Alternative Power list appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

More than 21m players have used AI music app Splash on Roblox

AI music startup Popgun launched its Splash music-making app on gaming platform Roblox in May, and saw it used by more than one million players in its first 20 days. How’s it going now? Still strong.
“Wow, over 21M players have now made music with Splash!” tweeted Popgun boss Stephen Phillips this weekend. “55K kids performed on stage for the first time yesterday.”
Splash is interesting partly because it’s one of the most consumer-friendly applications of AI music technology – Popgun’s system has created all the beats and loops in the app – and also because on Roblox it’s being used by a large audience of children.
The post More than 21m players have used AI music app Splash on Roblox appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ticketmaster fined in the UK over 2018 customer data breach

A £1.25m fine for Ticketmaster is very small beans compared to the money that its parent company Live Nation has lost this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, the fine, levied by the UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), is still a serious matter. It’s for failing to keep customers’ personal data secure, leading to a data breach in 2018 that potentially affected 9.4 million Ticketmaster users.
“Investigators found that, as a result of the breach, 60,000 payment cards belonging to Barclays Bank customers had been subjected to known fraud,” reported the ICO as it announced the fine. “Another 6,000 cards were replaced by Monzo Bank after it suspected fraudulent use.”
The post Ticketmaster fined in the UK over 2018 customer data breach appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Damon Krukowski explains penny-per-stream US artists campaign

We reported last month on the launch of the Justice at Spotify campaign by the Union of Musicians and Allied Workers (UMAW) in the US.
Now one of its prime movers, artist and author Damon Krukowski, has been talking to Vice about the campaign’s goals – including its demand that Spotify pay a minimum of a penny (one cent) per stream.
“A penny per stream is the driving force for me. Just the bottom line of they don’t pay us enough. It’s a classic labour struggle. Capital is keeping the money and not paying labour,” said Krukowski, who later elaborated on the demand.
The post Damon Krukowski explains penny-per-stream US artists campaign appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Instagram redesigns its homescreen with Reels to the fore

Instagram started testing its TikTok-style ‘Reels’ feature in late 2019, before rolling it out globally in August this year.
Now the feature is getting a big boost in Instagram’s latest redesign of its homescreen, with a dedicated tab rather than simply showing Reels content in the app’s ‘Explore’ screen.
For artists who are using Reels, this should help their short videos reach even more viewers – and it may nudge those who haven’t yet tried it to experiment.
The post Instagram redesigns its homescreen with Reels to the fore appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Hatsune Miku online concert zooms past its Kickstarter goal

Long before Riot Games started creating virtual artists like K/DA and Seraphine, Japanese avatar star Hatsune Miku was playing stadium gigs.
Now her creators are working on a big virtual concert based on her ‘Miku Expo’ tours. It’s called Hatsune Miku Expo 2021 Online, and will be a free show with at least 10 songs.
Why ‘at least’ though? Well, the event is being crowdfunded on Kickstarter, with stretch goals that could add up to four more songs to the setlist.
The post Hatsune Miku online concert zooms past its Kickstarter goal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Justin Bieber, Mary J Blige and more get festive with Amazon Music

Alright, it’s officially Christmas season now – don’t @ us, the John Lewis ad is out – and Amazon Music is going in strong with its now-annual lineup of original tracks.
This year it’s got Justin Bieber doing ‘Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree’; Mary J. Blige doing ‘Last Christmas’; and Carrie Underwood doing a brand new song called ‘Favorite Time of Year’. Which might be worth putting a bet on as the week-after-Christmas number one, given Amazon’s UK success with Ellie Goulding last year.
Jess Glynne, Jamie Cullum, Lele Pons and José Feliciano are among the other artists contributing covers or new tracks to Amazon’s Christmas music offering.
The post Justin Bieber, Mary J Blige and more get festive with Amazon Music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Artist Tom Vek is crowdfunding a Sleevenote music player

In 2016, we interviewed artist Tom Vek about his work on a mobile app called Sleevenote, which offered “interactive sleeve artwork for your digital music”. He’d clearly been thinking hard about the listening experience on streaming services, and that has continued.
Vek has just launched an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign for a new iteration of Sleevenote, and it’s hardware instead of an app.
“A unique premium music player that allows you to experience your music collection as a rich art-led experience,” as the pitch describes it.
The post Artist Tom Vek is crowdfunding a Sleevenote music player appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Tidal adds millions of WMG hi-res tracks using MQA technology

Tidal is swelling its catalogue of hi-res music, announcing yesterday that “millions” of Warner Music tracks in the MQA format have been added to its HiFi tier.
Tidal also announced that “since 2019, MQA users have doubled on Tidal, and Tidal HiFi users now stream 40% more tracks in Master Quality than last year” – although it did not give baseline figures for either of those percentage increases.
Tidal is also adding a ‘Master Edition’ option for its artist and track radio feature, which will enable listeners to only hear MQA-powered tracks when using it. There’s also a MQA version of the service’s ‘New Arrivals’ playlist, to help HiFi subscribers see what’s new on the service.
The post Tidal adds millions of WMG hi-res tracks using MQA technology appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ticketmaster won’t set entry policies for post-vaccine concerts

Yesterday we reported on Ticketmaster’s work on concerts safety for 2021, including fans proving that they’ve either been vaccinated against Covid-19, or have tested negative within the 72 hours before an event.
Now the company has been clarifying those plans, stressing that it won’t be setting the entry policies for concerts, but just providing options for promoters and venues.
“Ticketmaster’s goal is to provide enough flexibility and options that venues and fans have multiple paths to return to events, and is working to create integrations to our API and leading digital ticketing technology as we will look to tap into the top solutions based on what’s green-lit by officials and desired by clients,” president Mark Yovich told Pollstar.
The post Ticketmaster won’t set entry policies for post-vaccine concerts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify to host ‘Tokyo Super Hits Live 2020’ livestream concert

With Apple Music hosting livestream events with artists and Amazon Music forging ever-closer links with sister company Twitch, the integration of livestreaming and audio streaming is a trend we’re keeping an eye on.
Now look to Japan, where Spotify is hosting a livestreamed concert on 26 November based on its ‘Tokyo Super Hits’ playlist.
The event will feature Japanese stars including Arashi, Perfume, End of The World and Alexandros, as well as emerging artists. Tickets for the concert will cost ¥3,500 (around $33.33) and the partner platform is Streaming+ – which is run by ticketing company Eplus.
The post Spotify to host ‘Tokyo Super Hits Live 2020’ livestream concert appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Believe reportedly eyeing a 2021 IPO at $2.4bn valuation

It’s nearly two and a half years since distributor Believe was being tipped for an acquisition by Sony Music to the tune of $355m-$444m. The deal never came to pass, and that’s looking like a good decision for Believe now.
Reuters reported yesterday that the company is preparing to go public in 2021, with an IPO that could value it at €2bn ($2.4bn). “The company is working with Rothschild on the potential listing, which could take place in Paris or New York,” claimed Reuters, although Believe has not commented on the report.
Believe’s boss Denis Ladegaillerie delivered a Midem keynote in June this year outlining his views that the coming decade will be a good one for independent distributors.
The post Believe reportedly eyeing a 2021 IPO at $2.4bn valuation appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sonos goes HD with subscription-based radio service

Sonos is kicking its streaming ambitions up a notch, with the launch of a subscription-based radio service called Sonos Radio HD.
Available in the US and UK, it costs $7.99 / £7.99 a month, and promises ‘high-fidelity audio’ of the Sonos Sound System radio station. There will also be exclusive artist-curated stations (Dolly Parton being the first) and a range of genre and activity-based stations that won’t be available on the existing, ad-supported Sonos Radio service that launched in April this year.
This is an extension of Sonos’s partnership with Napster – Sonos Radio HD is a ‘Powered by Napster’ service – but there’s another partner involved that’s interesting. Startup Super Hi-Fi’s technology is being used across the free and paid tiers of Sonos Radio, and heralds the company’s rebranding of its AI-powered tech as a package called ‘Conductor’.
The post Sonos goes HD with subscription-based radio service appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

ByteDance tipped to make $27bn of ad revenue in China this year

ByteDance may be waiting to find out what’s happening with its proposed divestment of TikTok in the US, but business is going pretty well back home in China. Reuters reported that the company is “on track to generate at least 180 billion yuan ($27.2 billion) in advertising revenue in China this year”, making it the second biggest […]
The post ByteDance tipped to make $27bn of ad revenue in China this year appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music makes Beabadoobee its latest ‘Up Next’ artist

Keeping all the music streaming services happy as an artist can be tough: Katy Perry was one of the most famous examples of a musician being penalised on one service for giving a rival an exclusive. So we doff our cap to Beabadoobee and her team at Dirty Hit for juggling the partners without tension. In 2020 […]
The post Apple Music makes Beabadoobee its latest ‘Up Next’ artist appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Concerns mount about Euro tours for UK artists as Brexit looms

British artists haven’t been thinking about touring Europe this year, with Covid-19 having put paid to live music across the continent. But as hopes rise that a vaccine could bring concerts back in 2021, the British industry is being reminded that the UK is due to complete its exit (‘Brexit’) from the European Union at […]
The post Concerns mount about Euro tours for UK artists as Brexit looms appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Afem launches sexual harassment and discrimination code of conduct

The recent death of DJ Erick Morillo, and multiple accusations against him of sexual assault, have shone a light on issues of sexual harassment and discrimination in the electronic music world. Industry body the Association for Electronic Music (Afem) has now drawn up a code of conduct to tackle this behaviour. You can find it here, with […]
The post Afem launches sexual harassment and discrimination code of conduct appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Blockchain music service Audius has 30k-50k daily users

We’ve been following the progress of blockchain music streaming service Audius with interest: from early debates about whether its ‘censorship-resistant’ nature would be a copyright-takedowns nightmare, to its funding rounds in August and October this year. Now the company has given news site Coindesk a new figure on its scale: it’s attracting between 30,000 and 50,000 unique users a day. Note, the monthly […]
The post Blockchain music service Audius has 30k-50k daily users appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Viagogo could sell StubHub’s business outside North America

It’s not been smooth sailing for secondary ticketing firm Viagogo’s $4bn takeover of rival StubHub since it was announced in November 2019, thanks to regulatory investigations and Covid-19. Now Viagogo is proposing a solution that it hopes will fend off the regulators: selling StubHub’s business outside North America, while hanging on to the US and Canada […]
The post Viagogo could sell StubHub’s business outside North America appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Shutterstock acquires assets of AI music startup Amper Music

Amper Music has been one of the more prominent AI music startups since emerging in 2017 as one of the first startups to take part in the Techstars Music accelerator. It launched with a tool for people to make music with its AI to use in their own creative projects, and along the way has collaborated with artist […]
The post Shutterstock acquires assets of AI music startup Amper Music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ticketmaster lays plans for post-vaccine concerts in 2021

This week’s encouraging news about pharmaceutical company Pfizer’s work on a Covid-19 vaccine has renewed talk about how and when the live music industry will be able to come back at scale in the west. Billboard has an interesting piece on Ticketmaster’s plans, which will involve fans proving either that they have been vaccinated, or […]
The post Ticketmaster lays plans for post-vaccine concerts in 2021 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

European Commission steps up its investigations of Amazon

The European Commission has been training its sights on Amazon for a while now, with an investigation into its impact on the online retail market.
Yesterday, the EC told Amazon that it has reached a preliminary view that “it has breached EU antitrust rules by distorting competition in online retail markets”.
It has also opened a second antitrust investigation into “the possible preferential treatment of Amazon’s own retail offers and those of marketplace sellers that use Amazon’s logistics and delivery services”.
The post European Commission steps up its investigations of Amazon appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Lil Nas X set to play a concert in games platform Roblox

Games platform Roblox’s music ambitions press on: it’s working with Columbia Music and Lil Nas X on a concert this weekend.
Well, it’s a bit more than a concert. There’ll be a pre-show event on Friday evening involving a Q&A with the artist, as well as the debut of a new video for his upcoming single ‘Holiday’.
Then on Saturday there’ll be a concert performance across multiple stages in the Lil Nas X Concert Experience world – which has already opened up for fans to explore with mini-games and other activities.
The post Lil Nas X set to play a concert in games platform Roblox appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Google’s Area 120 shuts Demand analytics for live music

In February this year, Google’s experimental division Area 120 launched something called Demand, in partnership with Pollstar.
It was a live-music analytics tool promising “actionable, real-time analytics facilitating better planning, pricing, marketing and sponsorship of live events through data in four key areas: trends, pricing, announcements and insights”.
Which sounded good, right up until the live music industry shut down in many parts of the world due to Covid-19 shortly afterwards, meaning very few events to provide such data.
The post Google’s Area 120 shuts Demand analytics for live music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Artist Russ reveals his weekly streaming royalties

“In the entire existence [of Spotify] I don’t think I’ve ever seen a single artist saying ‘I’m happy with all the money I’m getting from streaming,” Daniel Ek told us in July, in an interview that sparked a rumpus royale on social media.
He might be pleased to see this tweet from American rapper Russ, then. “Some weekly checks on tunecore..inspo purposes only,” wrote Russ, sharing screenshots showing weekly royalties of $89.7k and $107.4k.
Russ didn’t praise streaming specifically, but he did deliver a message about independence to his peers.
The post Artist Russ reveals his weekly streaming royalties appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Music Venue Trust launches new ‘Traffic Light’ campaign

UK body the Music Venue Trust had great success recently in helping grassroots venues secure £41.4m in government funding to secure their futures.
Now it’s kicking off a new phase of its campaign to protect hundreds of venues in the UK as the Covid-19 live-music lockdown continues there.
This phase is focusing on 30 venues who *didn’t* get any funding from the government, and are thus at “imminent danger of permanent closure”.
The post Music Venue Trust launches new ‘Traffic Light’ campaign appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Audiomack’s new WMG licensing deal includes Africa

Streaming service Audiomack has a new deal with Warner Music Group, which for the first time includes Africa, Canada and Jamaica.
It’s the first of those that’s most interesting, coming just a week after Audiomack announced a partnership with smartphone maker Transsion Holdings in that region.
“Under the new deal, not only will our teams benefit from a range of key A&R, marketing, and data commitments in Africa, but Audiomack will also help support our African artists’ international expansion into the US and western markets,” said WMG’s Alfonso Perez Soto in a statement.
The post Audiomack’s new WMG licensing deal includes Africa appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok tipped to reach 1.2bn monthly active users in 2021

Mobile analytics firm App Annie is predicting that TikTok will have more than 1.2 billion monthly active users by the end of 2021, after crossing the one billion mark this year.
That would be some growth: figures published recently as part of TikTok’s legal battle in the US showed that it had 689.2 million monthly active users worldwide in July this year.
Talking of that legal battle, there are developments this week, and they concern… a lack of developments.
The post TikTok tipped to reach 1.2bn monthly active users in 2021 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report claims mental wellness is a $120.8bn market

We’ve been writing a fair amount about music’s intersection with the ‘wellness’ industry, from mindfulness apps like Calm and Headspace to fitness startups like Peloton.
Now there’s a new report that’s trying to quantify the global ‘mental wellness’ market. The topline: it could be worth $120.8bn, which breaks down into four categories: senses, spaces and sleep ($49.5bn); brain-boosting nutraceuticals and botanicals ($34.8bn); self improvement ($33.6bn) and meditation and mindfulness ($2.9bn).
This is according to the Global Wellness Institute (GWI), a non-profit organisation that tracks these industries. Its report also notes the massive investment happening in mental wellness companies and technology: $750m in 2019, and $1bn in the first half of 2020 alone.
The post Report claims mental wellness is a $120.8bn market appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amazon Music to host Dolly Parton Christmas livestream

If you’re the kind of person who shouts at people who put their Christmas decorations too early, look away now. Dolly Parton is doing a Christmas-themed livestream for Amazon Music… on 13 November.
‘Dolly Parton’s Comin’ Home for Christmas’ will be streamed live on Amazon Music’s Twitch channel and within its app, with a performance and Q&A with the star.
This is all to promote ‘A Holly Dolly Christmas’, Parton’s festive album, which came out in (look away again!) early October – complete with two bonus tracks that are streaming exclusives for Amazon. There’s even a tie-in merchandise store on its shopping service.
The post Amazon Music to host Dolly Parton Christmas livestream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Def Jam to launch fictional podcast featuring real artists

UMG’s Def Jam Recordings is teaming up with iHeartMedia and podcasting firm Double Elvis Productions for a new show that will feature emerging artists from the label.
‘Here Comes the Break’ is more interesting than just a showcase though: it’s a “serialised hip-hip music breaking podcast… that fuses a fictional scripted narrative with real artist interviews and exclusive music releases”.
Count us intrigued. The 10-episode podcast won’t be out until early 2021, with its main character being a teenage hip-hop fan Ruben who starts his own podcast. Cue interviews with new Def Jam artists, including premieres of new tracks.
The post Def Jam to launch fictional podcast featuring real artists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

One Media prepares to expand TCAT anti-piracy service

TCAT? That would be the Technical Copyright Analysis Tool developed by One Media IP to scan legal digital music services for music that shouldn’t be on there (e.g. unauthorised or duplicated releases, or incorrect public domain uploads) and take it down.
According to One Media, two major labels are already using it, as well as industry bodies and “the world’s largest media distributor”, but it sees more potential.
Now the company has set up a formal TCAT subsidiary and appointed a management team to run it, with the promise of future development of “new initiatives and tools in music anti-piracy, digital music fingerprinting and music data analysis”.
The post One Media prepares to expand TCAT anti-piracy service appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

ShareChat taps Audible Magic for copyright-spotting tech

Indian social media company ShareChat has become the latest customer for Audible Magic’s rights management and content recognition tech.
It will be used to “proactively address both licensed and misuses of copyright media” on ShareChat’s app, which has more than 160 million monthly active users.
Besides that app, the deal also includes ShareChat’s separate TikTok rival app Moj, which launched earlier this summer, and grew to 80 million active users by September.
Other short-video apps in India have been fielding takedowns from music rightsholders, and while ShareChat has been signing licensing deals that include Moj, the Audible Magic deal will be helpful for policing its platforms too.
The post ShareChat taps Audible Magic for copyright-spotting tech appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify survey hints at plans for podcasts subscription

Amid all the music industry speculation about whether podcast listening might in the future cannibalise not just streams of music, but royalties for it too, the assumptions were of a continuing single subscription covering both forms of content. But what if Spotify were to launch a standalone podcast subscription? That’s a question the streaming service […]
The post Spotify survey hints at plans for podcasts subscription appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Vimeo raises $150m as parent company mulls spin-off

Video streaming service Vimeo may be spinning off as an independent company within parent group IAC. The news was revealed as IAC also announced that Vimeo had raised $150m in a new funding round, from Thrive Capital and GIC.
A letter to shareholders from IAC boss Joey Levin outlined Vimeo’s journey from being a (smaller) YouTube rival, to more of a B2B platform for brands and companies using video.
“Prior to the pandemic, we were steadily proving Vimeo’s fit in the market. Organic bookings growth consistently accelerated last year from 11% in Q1’19 to 27% in Q4’19 as we began to expand from our filmmaker roots to a broader audience of small businesses and large enterprises,” he wrote.
“Then the pandemic hit, and that acceleration exploded to 41% in Q1, 79% in Q2, and 56% in the most recent quarter.” More than 3,500 business clients are currently using Vimeo.
The post Vimeo raises $150m as parent company mulls spin-off appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Fangage relaunches after €300k crowdfunding campaign

Fangage is the startup founded by Dutch DJ and producer Sam Feldt: a fan platform for musicians and influencers to promote their music and content; communicate with fans; sell merchandise; and build audiences.
Founded in 2016, it’s been used by clients in the dance world including Oliver Heldans, Laidback Luke and Armada Music, attracting hundreds of thousands of fans to the platform.
Anyway, after a €300k crowdfunding campaign in 2019, Fangage has now relaunched. Among its features: VIP subscriptions where fans can pay a monthly fee for access to exclusive content from their favourite stars.
Fangage has now added support for more languages, and honed its pricing tiers for its customers: they can use it for free, or pay €39 or €79 a month for premium tiers with more features for building their fan communities.
The post Fangage relaunches after €300k crowdfunding campaign appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music gets more exclusive Ministry of Sound mixes

Apple Music and Ministry of Sound have a well-established partnership now, and it’s yielding some new mixes for listeners on the streaming service. There’s a mix version of Ministry’s new ‘The Annual 2021’ compilation, but also some mixes harking back to past glories for the dance brand.
Pete Tong and Boy George have remixed the first three compilations: ‘The Annual’, ‘The Annual II’ and ‘The Annual III’. All three are streamable on Apple Music, which is the first time they’ve been made available to stream anywhere.
The post Apple Music gets more exclusive Ministry of Sound mixes appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Irving Azoff talks Facebook, Snapchat and TikTok licensing

Ahead of being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this weekend, Irving Azoff has been talking to the Los Angeles Times for a profile. It includes some entertainingly spiky views on the state of music licensing in 2020.
“These people, when they start out — whether it’s Facebook, Snapchat, TikTok, whatever — they resist paying for music until you go beat the f*** out of them. And then of course, none of them pay fair market value and they get away with it,” said Azoff.
“Your company’s worth $30 billion and you can’t spend 20 grand for a song that becomes a phenomenon on your channel? Even when they pay, artists don’t get enough. Writers don’t get enough. Music, as a commodity, is more important than it’s ever been, and more unfairly monetised for the creators. And that’s what creates an opportunity for people like me.”
The post Irving Azoff talks Facebook, Snapchat and TikTok licensing appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Driift takes its livestreams to Australia and New Zealand

Management company ATC Management launched its Driift online-concerts spin-off earlier this year after successful events for Laura Marling and Dermot Kennedy.
Ahead of tomorrow’s Kylie Minogue ‘Infinite Disco’ broadcast, Driift is expanding to her homeland. In fact, it’s opening an office to produce and promote shows in Australia AND New Zealand.
“We believe this is a format with enormous untapped potential, and one where the pandemic has unlocked previously unforeseen demand for unique, one-off, artist-led events,” said Driift CEO Ric Salmon.
The post Driift takes its livestreams to Australia and New Zealand appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

NetEase Cloud Music now has 200k independent Chinese artists

Chinese streaming service NetEase Cloud Music has published a report hailing the fact that the number of Chinese independent musicians on its platform has doubled in the last year.
There are now more than 200,000 of them, up from 100,000 in 2019, and just 20 million back in 2016. “Compared with 2017, over 40% of independent musicians in China saw an obvious revenue growth,” explained the report, which was released this morning.
“The total revenue of musicians participating in our Project Cloud Ladder, an initiative to encourage independent musicians to create better music, exceeded over RMB 100 million in the first 10 months of 2020.” That’s around $15.1m.
The post NetEase Cloud Music now has 200k independent Chinese artists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Live Nation publishes financials, sees ‘signs of promise’

There are few surprises in the latest quarterly financial results for Live Nation. Revenues were down 95% year-on-year – slashed from $3.77bn in Q3 2019 to just $184m a year later.
The live giant reported an operating loss of $504.4m, compared to an operating profit of 260m a year ago. For the first nine months of 2020, Live Nation’s operating loss is now $1.27bn.
The company tried to find some bright spots: for example the fact that 83% of fans have hung on to tickets for rescheduled shows, rather than request refunds.
The post Live Nation publishes financials, sees ‘signs of promise’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok generated $115m of user spending in October 2020

The latest estimates for the monthly smartphone apps are out from research firm Sensor Tower, and there’s no change at the top of the top-grossing non-game apps list for October. TikTok generated $115m of user spending that month, according to the rankings. That’s more than six times the figure from October 2019, with 86% of it coming […]
The post TikTok generated $115m of user spending in October 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Youth Music reveals recipients of its £2m incubator fund

In July, British charity Youth Music announced a £2m incubator fund aimed at 18-25 year-olds in the UK, particularly from under-represented groups, with their music industry ambitions. Now it has revealed the 31 businesses that will be receiving grants of between £5k and £30k from the first round of the fund. The companies are all focused on […]
The post Youth Music reveals recipients of its £2m incubator fund appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Could podcast growth mean higher per-stream Spotify rates?

Midia Research has published a blog post about ‘understanding how Spotify thinks‘, spurred by its recent announcement of its new Discovery Mode feature – and the subsequent criticism from artists. It turns Spotify’s three interest groups – investors, audience, and rightsholders and creators – into a neat Venn diagram, but a sentence further down it jumped out […]
The post Could podcast growth mean higher per-stream Spotify rates? appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Socan reveals 2019 financials and plans to sell Dataclef assets

Canadian collecting society Socan has published its financial results for 2019. Its collections grew by 8.2% to $405.6m, including a 37.6% increase for its digital collections to $86m. However, distributions to its members fell by 6% to $296m, which Socan said was due to “the steep learning curve required for the company’s newly deployed technology to […]
The post Socan reveals 2019 financials and plans to sell Dataclef assets appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

European music managers call for changes to streaming economy

The latest salvo in the debate about music streaming’s economics – and particularly royalties for artists – comes from the European Music Managers Alliance (Emma). In a statement issued this morning, it has praised streaming for returning the recorded music industry to growth, but claimed that “the fact that streaming services are still licensed on […]
The post European music managers call for changes to streaming economy appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Collecting society Apra reveals Covid-19 impact on royalties

Australian collecting society Apra is the latest PRO to quantify the effect that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on its collections, and thus on its payouts to songwriters and publishers. “The November APRA royalty payment overall will be down 11% compared to the same quarter last year,” it explained. November’s payment is for royalties from the […]
The post Collecting society Apra reveals Covid-19 impact on royalties appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Audiomack inks Africas smartphone deal with Transsion Holdings

Outside the US, streaming service Audiomack has been a little under the radar thus far. That’s something it’s hoping to change in one of the regions the music industry sees huge potential in: Africa. It has signed a deal with smartphone firm Transsion Holdings, whose handset brands include Tecno, Infinix and Itel. The details aren’t clear […]
The post Audiomack inks Africas smartphone deal with Transsion Holdings appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple opens up: Pandora on HomePod and Spotify on Apple Watch

Well, it’s not as sudden as the headline sounds: Apple has been opening up its device ecosystem in new ways recently – it’s just we’re starting to see the apps and integrations now as a result. Pandora now works on the HomePod smart speaker, meaning people will be able to ask Siri to play music from […]
The post Apple opens up: Pandora on HomePod and Spotify on Apple Watch appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Arguments over US songwriter streaming royalties kick off again

The good news for Spotify is that something other than its Discovery Mode is causing a stink today. The bad news for Spotify is that the something is the ongoing battle over new streaming royalties for songwriters set in the US by the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) – which Spotify along with Amazon, Google and Pandora […]
The post Arguments over US songwriter streaming royalties kick off again appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

RJ Thompson launches augmented reality app for latest album

There’s a mini-flurry of augmented reality experimentation going on in music at the moment, outside the big platforms (Instagram, Snapchat) and not always by artists on major labels.
RJ Thompson, for example, released his new album ‘Lifeline’ last week, complete with what’s being described as “the world’s first ever-evolving AR designed album artwork”.
The idea: fans who buy the album can download a companion app, then point their camera at the artwork – which will then change according to the time of day, year and weather.
Fans will also be able to scan the vinyl gatefold or CD booklet to unlock bonus content: sketches, videos, demo recordings and more, with new stuff added over the coming months.
“My idea from day one was to create something that feels like it evolves with you… that doesn’t start and end on the day you buy it, but that changes over time,” said Thompson, who worked with Spark Emerging Technologies on the app.
The post RJ Thompson launches augmented reality app for latest album appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

KSI and Craig David turn into holograms for LadBible video

Craig David all over your… desk? The British star’s latest collaboration, with KSI, has been turned into an augmented reality video for online brand LadBible.
Fans can visit the microsite on their smartphones (here’s the link) and then point their camera at a space around them to pop up virtual versions of the pair performing their track ‘Really Love’.
LadBible worked with AR startup HoloMe on the campaign, with fans encouraged to screenshot the results to share with the #KSIhologram hashtag.
It’s the latest example of artists testing out AR with a big digital partner. See also: Sam Smith’s recent AR video that was created for Spotify.
The post KSI and Craig David turn into holograms for LadBible video appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Linkfire’s latest attribution data deal is with YouTube Music

Music marketing platform Linkfire has announced its latest data deal, with YouTube Music. “In addition to seeing how many of your link visitors click through to YouTube and YouTube Music, you’ll be able to see how those clicks translate into streams on the platforms,” promised the company.
It makes YouTube the latest service to sign on for Linkfire’s ‘attribution’ data drive, alongside Apple Music, Deezer, Pandora, Anghami and Boomplay among others.
Which, as sharp readers will have already spotted, leaves Spotify and Amazon Music as two of the remaining unchecked boxes on Linkfire’s to-do list.
The company has been pushing for these deals for some time, to give labels more useful data from the smart-links they use for marketing.
In October 2019, CEO Lars Ettrup told our Sandbox Summit conference that Linkfire would be able to attribute 50% of its traffic within six months, adding that “the goal of achieving 100% attribution is feasible in the very near future”.
The post Linkfire’s latest attribution data deal is with YouTube Music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Taylor Swift fans celebrate as block on re-recordings ends

Remember in August 2019, when Taylor Swift talked about when the block on her re-recording her back catalogue would elapse?
“My contract says that starting November 2020, so next year, I can record albums one through five all over again,” said Swift at the time. “I’m very excited about it. I just think that artists deserve to own their own work.”
And now here we are in November 2020, and Swift’s fans certainly haven’t forgotten. Cue a #TaylorIsFree hashtag all over Twitter and Instagram.
The post Taylor Swift fans celebrate as block on re-recordings ends appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

European cultural bodies launch Covid-19 recovery campaign

A group of 110 bodies representing the creative and cultural industries are keeping up the pressure on governments and European policymakers over their post-Covid recovery plans.
Impala, the IFPI, ICMP and ECSA are among the bodies who have written to national governments and to the European Commission pressing for at least 2% of each country’s ‘national recovery and resilience facility’ budget be allocated to the cultural and creative sector.
“There is a risk that citizens will not find their vibrant cultural life back in the post-pandemic world,” warned their letter. “This would be a huge loss in terms of social cohesion, communities’ empowerment, individual well being, and the economic revival of Europe.”
A social media campaign is kicking off today: watch for the #actforculture and #cultureneedsmore hashtags.
The post European cultural bodies launch Covid-19 recovery campaign appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s new artist tool could boost streams (with a discounted royalty rate)

Spotify is testing a new feature that will enable artists and labels to boost specific tracks in the recommendation algorithms for its radio and autoplay features – if they agree to a “promotional” (i.e. lower) royalty rate for those streams.
Autoplay is the feature that automatically plays other songs when you reach the end of an album or playlist, while Radio is the section of Spotify that generates radio-like stations based on specific songs and artists.
Spotify is calling the new feature ‘Discovery Mode’ and will initially test it with artists and labels in the US, rolling it out further if it is successful. The promotional rate will only apply to recording royalties: the publishing royalties for these tracks will remain the same.
Here’s how the streaming service is describing its plans in a blog post this afternoon:
———-
“In this new experiment, artists and labels can identify music that’s a priority for them, and our system will add that signal to the algorithm that determines personalized listening sessions. This allows our algorithms to account for what’s important to the artist — perhaps a song they’re particularly excited about, an album anniversary they’re celebrating, a viral cultural moment they’re experiencing, or other factors they care about.
To ensure the tool is accessible to artists at any stage of their careers, it won’t require any upfront budget. Instead, labels or rights holders agree to be paid a promotional recording royalty rate for streams in personalized listening sessions where we provided this service. If the songs resonate with listeners, we’ll keep trying them in similar sessions. If the songs don’t perform well, they’ll quickly be pulled back. Listener satisfaction is our priority—we won’t guarantee placement to labels or artists, and we only ever recommend music we think listeners will want to hear.
We’re testing this to make sure it’s a great experience for both listeners and artists. To start, we’ll focus on applying this service to our Radio and Autoplay formats, where we know listeners are looking to discover new music. As we learn from this experiment, we’ll carefully test expanding to other personalized areas of Spotify.”
———-
Music Ally talked to Spotify’s product marketing lead Charleton Lamb ahead of the announcement, to understand what the streaming service is doing with the latest of its promotional tools for artists and labels.
The post Spotify’s new artist tool could boost streams (with a discounted royalty rate) appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

League of Legends World Championship kicks off with KDA in AR

Surprisingly, a whizzy augmented reality performance including a virtual star zooming onto the stage on a motorbike *wasn’t* the strangest sight for western viewers of the League of Legends World Championship opening ceremony this weekend. For those of us in countries where the live industry is still shut down, an event with more than 6,000 […]
The post League of Legends World Championship kicks off with KDA in AR appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Trump administration’s TikTok ban faces another barrier

We suspect that Donald Trump’s mind isn’t really on the proposed ban of TikTok in the US right now: he has bigger priorities this week. But remember: even if he loses the US presidential election (not to mention accepting the result) the handover won’t come until mid-January, so TikTok’s US status could well become a […]
The post Trump administration’s TikTok ban faces another barrier appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Capitol and Gener8tor’s gBeta Musictech accelerator set for pitches

gBeta Musictech is the startup accelerator launched by Capitol Music Group and a company called Gener8tor, and it’s holding its latest pitch night on 11 November as part of Capitol’s involvement in the Infinity Festival. Six startups took part in this year’s accelerator, which started at the end of July and lasted for seven weeks. We’ve […]
The post Capitol and Gener8tor’s gBeta Musictech accelerator set for pitches appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

African streaming service Mdundo now has 6.4m listeners

It’s barely a month since we were reporting that African streaming service Mdundo had five million monthly active users. Now the official total has risen to 6.4 million. That’s according to the company’s new quarterly update. Thanks to growth in the east, west and south of Africa, the company’s user total is up 144% year-on-year. Mdundo also says […]
The post African streaming service Mdundo now has 6.4m listeners appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Hipgnosis ups the ante with $322.9m Kobalt Capital deal

Like a child scrambling to spend their birthday money on V-Bucks or Robux within seconds of being given it, Hipgnosis Songs Fund isn’t wasting any time spending its latest injection of cash from investors. This morning saw the company’s biggest deal yet, paying $322.9m for a catalogue of more than 33k songs (or shares in […]
The post Hipgnosis ups the ante with $322.9m Kobalt Capital deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Industry equality: rethinking funnels and creating opportunities

YouTube’s music chief Lyor Cohen convened a panel to discuss racial justice and the ‘race to equality’ in the music industry. Published on Friday, it included contributions from Brianna Agyemang and Jamila Thomas (who founded #TheShowMustBePaused); Binta Brown (co-founder of the Black Music Action Coalition); Public Enemy’s Chuck D; UMG’s EVP of business and legal affairs […]
The post Industry equality: rethinking funnels and creating opportunities appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube now has 30m music and premium subscribers globally

YouTube’s parent company Alphabet reported another big quarter yesterday. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic’s impact on the advertising market, Alphabet’s Q3 revenues were up by 14% year-on-year to $46.17bn, helping the company to an $11.25bn net profit in the third quarter. Within that, there were figures for YouTube advertising revenues, which grew by 32.4% year-on-year to $5.04bn […]
The post YouTube now has 30m music and premium subscribers globally appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Grimes teams up with Endel to create an ‘AI Lullaby’

Startup Endel made its name with technology generating AI music to suit people’s moods and activities. Now it has announced a partnership with a high-profile human artist: Grimes. They’ve worked together on an ‘AI Lullaby’ that will be featured in Endel’s iOS and Mac apps until 23 December. Later this year it will also be […]
The post Grimes teams up with Endel to create an ‘AI Lullaby’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BPI / Brit Awards donate £54k to Covid-19 Crew Relief Fund

As Covid-19’s second wave sweeps Europe (and the first wave seemingly never ran out of steam in much of the US) we may soon have to revive our regular ‘positive industry stories’ slot, just to keep our heads up. In advance of that, here’s some positive news from the UK, where the BPI and Brit […]
The post BPI / Brit Awards donate £54k to Covid-19 Crew Relief Fund appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Primephonic launches a ‘digital crash course’ in classical music

Classical music streaming service Primephonic’s new initiative, Ludwig, is more than just a marketing wheeze. It’s a 10-week “digital crash course” in classical music, with a weekly podcast; bi-daily email lessons; playlists on key composers and genres; and access to Primephonic’s app and catalogue of music. The latter point hints at the interesting aspect: Ludwig is […]
The post Primephonic launches a ‘digital crash course’ in classical music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok strikes back at Triller with patent counter-suit

Remember when Triller sued TikTok for patent infringement in July? Whatever happened to that case? What happened this week is that TikTok struck back with a counter lawsuit. At issue is a June 2017 patent awarded to a children’s apps firm called Mibblio, whose co-founders David Lieberman and Sammy Rubin also co-founded Triller – which says it now owns the […]
The post TikTok strikes back at Triller with patent counter-suit appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

New K-Pop group Aespa includes both human and virtual members

K-Pop firm SM Entertainment has unveiled its latest group, and Aespa promises to be a fascinating project. The group will include both human and virtual (avatar) singers, who’ve been introduced to fans one by one to build anticipation. Yesterday saw a teaser interview posted with human member Karina and her virtual version ‘æ-Karina’. SM Entertainment’s founder […]
The post New K-Pop group Aespa includes both human and virtual members appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Former WME exec Marc Geiger to invest in independent venues

Marc Geiger was the music boss at talent agency WME, before leaving earlier this year. Now he’s setting up to invest in a network of independent music venues across the US. Geiger has founded a company called SaveLive and raised $75m to invest in venues and small clubs, taking 51% ownership of them in the […]
The post Former WME exec Marc Geiger to invest in independent venues appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sony Music’s recorded music revenues grew 11% year-on-year

Sony Corporation’s latest quarterly financials came out yesterday, and they revealed a strong quarter for Sony Music. Its Q3 recorded music revenues grew by 11% year-on-year to $1.16bn, including 19% growth in streaming revenues – which reached $742.3m. This, despite the fact that Sony Music’s release schedule is still under pressure from the Covid-19 pandemic. “The release of […]
The post Sony Music’s recorded music revenues grew 11% year-on-year appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK Music publishes its latest industry diversity study

The UK’s umbrella industry body, UK Music, has published its latest report on music industry diversity. Its findings highlight a mixture of progress made, and work still to do, as you’d expect. There have been rises in the proportion of women in the industry (from 45.3% in 2016 to 49.6% in 2020) as well as […]
The post UK Music publishes its latest industry diversity study appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify can’t just shrug off the latest Joe Rogan controversy

“A few people tweeting that they’re cancelling their Spotify subscriptions does not a firestorm make,” we wrote in our news bulletin yesterday, about the initial responses to Alex Jones guesting on Joe Rogan’s podcast.
Well, later that day the flames began to spread, as major media outlets picked up on Jones’s appearance despite his own podcast having been removed from Spotify.
BuzzFeed also had a scoop: an internal memo from Spotify’s general counsel Horacio Gutierrez giving fellow executives ‘talking points’ to use if they were pressed on the topic.
The post Spotify can’t just shrug off the latest Joe Rogan controversy appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify Q3 financials reveal it now has 320m users and 144m subscribers

Music streaming service Spotify has announced its latest quarterly financial results. The company ended Q3 with 320 million monthly active users, having added 21 million during the quarter.
Meanwhile, Spotify’s subscriber total is now 144 million, up from 113 million a year ago, and 138 million at the end of Q2.
Spotify’s Q3 revenues grew by 14% year-on-year to €1.98bn, including a 15% rise in subscription revenues to €1.79bn. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, advertising revenues grew by 9% year-on-year to €185m.
“Notably, some of our more mature regions exhibited accelerating user growth, our advertising business returned to growth, and new market launches in Russia and 12 surrounding markets unlocked significant pent-up demand, adding a helpful accelerant to our results,” said Spotify in its announcement.
There was more detail on the ongoing Covid-19 impact on music streaming. “From a content consumption standpoint, global consumption hours surpassed pre-Covid levels during the quarter, and all regions have fully recovered,” reported Spotify.
“Consumption trends by platform have returned to normal usage, including in-car listening hours which is now above the pre-Covid peak. Usage on connected devices inside the home, which saw a spike during lockdown, also remains above pre-Covid levels.”
Is Spotify profitable yet? An evergreen question with a still-red answer: no, it is not. However, the company did narrow its operating loss from €167m a year ago to €40m in its latest quarter, while its net loss fell from €356m to €101m over the same period.
Other things leaping out at us from the financials announcement:
– Spotify’s Russia and Eastern Europe launches in July were “stronger than expected”.
– The average revenue per user (ARPU) of a Spotify premium user is still falling: down 10% year-on-year to €4.19 in Q3.
– Spotify’s recent price rise for its Family subscription isn’t just an Australia thing: it’s also happened in Belgium, Switzerland, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia.
– There are now 1.9m podcasts on Spotify, up from 1.5m in Q2. 22% of its monthly active users listened to podcasts last quarter – that’s around 70.4 million people, up from 62.8 million last quarter. Spotify launched 58 new ‘original and exclusive’ podcasts in Q3.
– An interesting nugget: “Despite the challenges stemming from the Covid-19 pandemic, we saw a 13% increase in new music releases compared with Q2 on our platform.”
– 750,000 artists and their teams are now using the Spotify for Artists tools.
– More details on how Spotify’s ‘two-sided marketplace’ of promotional tools for labels and artists is growing. “During Q3, we saw a 76% increase in unique customers relative to Q2, and we retained 74% of customers from Q2.” That’s customers paying to promote their music on Spotify: “We saw demand from both the Major labels and Indies…”
– Spotify expects to end 2020 with 340-345 million monthly active users and 150-154 million premium subscribers.
The post Spotify Q3 financials reveal it now has 320m users and 144m subscribers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UMG’s Bravado inks merch deal with Alibaba’s Tmall platform

2020 has been a really interesting year for Universal Music Group’s various arms in China. From local signings like Linong Chen and Sunnee to a joint label with Tencent Music, via gaming songwriting camps and the small matter of $1.2m of Taylor Swift album sales in a few days on NetEase Cloud Music.
Weaving these strands into the overall story of UMG’s China strategy is a task for another day, but today the major label group’s merchandise division announced its own latest deal in China.
Bravado is partnering with Alibaba Group, and will be opening a merch store on the latter company’s Tmall Global service to sell products for the likes of Tupac Shakur, Guns n’ Roses, the Rolling Stones and Bob Marley.
Oh, and Taylor Swift, who’ll be the new store’s first featured artist – the first time merch from her ‘Folklore’ album has been sold in China. In fact, Chinese fans will get its brand new merch drop two weeks before any other country.
The post UMG’s Bravado inks merch deal with Alibaba’s Tmall platform appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

FIFA 21 adds music-disabling option to help game streamers

The knock-on effects from rightsholders’ pressure on Twitch over music licensing are starting. Games publisher Electronic Arts has added a new menu option to its FIFA 21 game: ‘Disable All Music For Streaming Purposes’.
That means people streaming their gameplay on platforms like Twitch will now be able to do it without any background music that might generate copyright takedown notices for their videos.
FIFA is famous for its soundtracks mixing established artists with emerging acts. The unfortunate result of the standoff between rightsholders and Twitch is that this in-game discovery won’t be extended to Amazon’s live-streaming platform.
The post FIFA 21 adds music-disabling option to help game streamers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Keychange movement expands in Poland with events this week

The Keychange initiative pressing for gender equality in the music industry – including on its live stages – has a new frontier this week.
Poland has become an official partner for the movement, and tomorrow will see an event co-hosted by Key Change and festival organiser Spring Break to introduce its first two ambassadors in Poland: Avtomat and Karolina Czarnecka.
The campaign is timely. “We have witnessed the dangerous politicization of gender in Poland this year with the President inciting hate speech as part of his reelection campaign,” said Magdalena Jensen, co-founder and managing partner at Chimes Agency, who’s planning this year’s Keychange training.
The post Keychange movement expands in Poland with events this week appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

It’s 2020 so of course there are now fake artist livestreams

There was good news for fans of musician Zoe Keating in late August: one of her cancelled gigs was being replaced by a ticketed livestream. The only downside: Keating knew nothing about it.
It had been created as an event on Facebook, with the people behind it taking fans money in the full knowledge that there would not be any performance to watch.
Music Technology Policy has the full story, including the unhelpful response from Facebook: the event did not violate its community standards.
A group including the Artist Rights Alliance has now gone straight to the top and written a letter to the US attorney general Bill Barr and the chair of the Federal Trade Commission asking them to investigate and “protect consumers, music fans, and artists from Facebook-driven fraud”. Ouch.
The post It’s 2020 so of course there are now fake artist livestreams appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amuse expands its Fast Forward royalty advances service

Distributor Amuse launched its Fast Forward scheme in February 2019 as a way to pay artists up to six months of royalties in advance, based on its estimates of their future earnings.
The company now says that hundreds of artists have benefited from the feature, with advances between $250 and $300k.
Now Fast Forward is relaunching and expanding its focus, with artists now able to get advances for themselves and their collaborators – producers, managers and other musicians included.
The post Amuse expands its Fast Forward royalty advances service appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Dutch dance industry warns of Covid-19’s earnings impact

Electronic music is suffering considerably from the Covid-19 pandemic, given the difficulties of safely opening clubs and putting on live events at any scale.
The Netherlands may be in the most precarious position of all according to a new report presented at the ADE conference last week, and authored by Music Ally.
Figures from DJ Monitor/ Rightscheck.com, released in advance for the event, showed how the Netherlands is Europe’s leader when it comes to festivals (391 with a capacity of over 1000 people), with 85-90% of those estimated to be largely or wholly focused on electronic music.
The post Dutch dance industry warns of Covid-19’s earnings impact appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Tomorrowland says its virtual festival ‘about broke even’

Dance festival Tomorrowland sold nearly 140k tickets to its virtual festival earlier this year. Now the organisers have been talking to Billboard about how those sales translated into profit.
The answer: not quite, but not far off. Co-founder Michiel Beers said that the festival “about broke even” after Tomorrowland spent around $6m putting it together, with additional funding from sponsorships and media deals.
Now Tomorrowland is planning a follow up for New Year’s Eve, and even if the physical version of the festival returns next year, the virtual edition seems here to stay.
The post Tomorrowland says its virtual festival ‘about broke even’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Capitol Royale returns with Infinity Festival Hollywood

Capitol Music Group is bringing back its Capitol Royale tech event, although in a different form to last year’s two-day conference. The label has partnered with an online event called Infinity Festival Hollywood, which runs from this week (28 October) until early January 2021. “Capitol Royale will bring a unique slate of music-related programming to the table including […]
The post Capitol Royale returns with Infinity Festival Hollywood appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Deep Word is the latest startup creating synthetic video

The word ‘deepfake’ already has negative connotations: of people manipulating photos, audio and/or video for nefarious purposes. That’s why you’re going to hear the word ‘synthetic’ a lot in the coming months: the same technology, but being put to more positive work than misinformation or the really worrying stuff. Deep Word is an interesting example of synthetic […]
The post Deep Word is the latest startup creating synthetic video appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Justin Bieber’s ‘Next Chapter’ is another YouTube documentary

If 10 episodes of YouTube documentary about Justin Bieber weren’t enough for you earlier this year, we have some good news. The video service is following up its ‘Justin Bieber: Seasons’ series with a one-off 30-minute doc called ‘Justin Bieber: Next Chapter’. Fans can expect “an exclusive look at his life today – everything from […]
The post Justin Bieber’s ‘Next Chapter’ is another YouTube documentary appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Deezer encourages pirate app users to switch to official version

It may seem strange that people try to use music streaming services like Spotify and Deezer through unofficial apps, when there’s not even a subscription barrier to entry for the official ones. Getting premium features without paying is one reason some people gravitate towards the unofficial (or ‘modded’) apps, and understandably the streaming services regularly […]
The post Deezer encourages pirate app users to switch to official version appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

iHeartMedia is buying podcasting tech firm Voxnest

It’s open season for acquisitions of podcasting startups whose technology and/or shows seem appealing to a bigger fish. The latest example is Voxnest, a company that makes advertising tech for podcasting, and which is now being bought by iHeartMedia. Cue adspeak! “iHeartMedia, through Voxnest, will now be able to provide podcast advertisers with additional targetable inventory […]
The post iHeartMedia is buying podcasting tech firm Voxnest appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Decentralised streaming service Audius raises another $1.25m

We first wrote about Audius in August 2018, when it raised $5.5m for what one report described as “SoundCloud on the blockchain”. It launched just over a year later, with a “censorship-resistant, community-controlled” audio streaming service where “anyone who joins Audius can effectively become an artist, just by uploading tracks”. Its decentralised model – music hosted on local […]
The post Decentralised streaming service Audius raises another $1.25m appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify, Apple, YouTube and Netflix among PS5 media partners

November this year is New Consoles Month, with Microsoft’s Xbox Series X and Series S plus Sony’s PlayStation 5 making their debuts. While games are the focus, music and video streaming will also be part of the packages.
Sony revealed some of its plans yesterday: at launch the PS5 will have apps for Apple TV, Disney+, Netflix, Spotify, Twitch and YouTube available in its media hub, with Amazon Prime Video and more to follow.
There’s also going to be a media-focused remote-control device to control this, with dedicated buttons for Spotify, YouTube, Netflix and Disney+.
“The PS5 console also features a new Control Center that makes controlling your music easier than ever before, so you can quickly switch between channels, skip, and pause your music,” said Sony.
The post Spotify, Apple, YouTube and Netflix among PS5 media partners appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sam Smith set for AR Spotify video and TikTok interview

Sam Smith’s new album ‘Love Goes’ is out later this month, and they’re pulling out plenty of promotional stops around its release, including new single ‘Diamonds’.
The latter is getting a web-based augmented reality music video in partnership with Spotify. Dreamed up by agency Powster, it gets fans to scan an image to pop up a “miniature dancing Sam Smith hologram”, although they’ll need two phones to make it work (you can see how in this promotional video).
The post Sam Smith set for AR Spotify video and TikTok interview appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Quincy Jones invests in music/tech startup Musimap

Quincy Jones is no stranger to the world of music/tech startups: he founded music video-on-demand service Qwest TV, which launched three years ago.
Now he’s also investing in another startup, Musimap, which describes itself as an “emotional artificial intelligence” company, with a lead product called MusiMe which is a “psycho-emotional profiling engine”.
Essentially it analyses people’s listening to try to understand their personality (“Is your customer self-aware or spiritual? Does he like exercise or travelling? Our emotion-sensitive algorithm can predict automatically all this and more from the music he loves…” as its website explains it.)
The post Quincy Jones invests in music/tech startup Musimap appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Music-making tech company Output raises $45m funding round

Output is one of the music/tech companies making digital instruments, effects and even furniture for musicians to use in the studio.
A valuable business? It certainly is according to investment firm Summit Partners, which has just funded Output to the tune of $45m in its Series A round.
It’ll help the company to add “playable instruments and mobile applications in 2021” to build on the success of its music-creation software Arcade, which it says has been used by more than 420,000 musicians so far.
The post Music-making tech company Output raises $45m funding round appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube Music’s next online festival is the #FoundryFest

YouTube Music’s #SOSFest last weekend has so far raised more than $1.8m to support NIVA’s campaign to support independent music venues in the US.
The company is already planning its next online festival though: it’s called #FoundryFest, and will be an “on-demand video series” rather than a full-on livestreamed event. It’s focusing on artists who took part in YouTube’s Foundry program for early-stage musicians, the success of which is shown with the roster of now-stars taking part.
Dua Lipa, Beabadoobee, Arlo Parks and Rina Sawayama will be among the artists contributing performances, premieres and interviews for the event today (23 October). There’s also a fundraising element: the Save our Stages campaign again, but also the Equal Justice Initiative and other charities, using YouTube’s donations feature.
The post YouTube Music’s next online festival is the #FoundryFest appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Pandora now has 58.6m monthly active listeners

US satellite-radio firm SiriusXM published its latest financials yesterday, revealing that it now has nearly 30.5 million ‘self-pay’ subscribers to its service, having added 169,000 in the third quarter of this year. Its revenue grew by 1% year-on-year to $1.6bn.
Its music streaming subsidiary Pandora is still battling to turn around its listener decline though. Pandora ended Q3 with 58.6 million monthly active listeners, down from 59.6 million in Q2, and 63.1 million a year ago.
Pandora added around 105,000 self-pay subscribers for its premium tiers, meaning it has nearly 6.4 million – compared to nearly 6.3 million a year ago.
The post Pandora now has 58.6m monthly active listeners appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report: independents are 27% of music publishing market

Independent publishers body IMPF has published a new ‘Global Market View 2020′ report offering figures for its members’ share of the global publishing sector.
The key stats: an estimate that the global publishing market was worth €5bn (around $5.9bn) in 2019 – up from €4.63bn in 2018 – and that independent publishers accounted for 27% of that market in 2019.
Note, there’s a specific methodology here: IMPF defines ‘independent’ as any firm with less than 5% of the market, adding that the three major global publishers (Sony/ATV, UMPG and Warner/Chappell) have a 55% share collectively.
The post Report: independents are 27% of music publishing market appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Calvin Harris sells publishing catalogue for $90m-plus

Shock news! The latest big-money deal for a publishing catalogue doesn’t involve Hipgnosis Songs Fund. Dance star Calvin Harris has sold his catalogue of more than 150 songs to financial firm Vine Alternative Investments, although Sony/ATV will continue administering it.
The price wasn’t officially announced, although Variety claimed it was “around $100m” while Billboard offered a wider “between $90m and $110m” estimate.
Vine has been around since the mid-2000s, largely focused on the film and TV sectors, but its first deal in music came in September this year, when it acquired the catalogue of songwriter Sean Douglas.
Bagging Harris for its next deal is a significant statement of intent, not to mention renewed proof of the kind of investors setting their sights on music rights at the moment.
The post Calvin Harris sells publishing catalogue for $90m-plus appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify launches its own radio-style ‘daily morning show’

Breakfast shows are a staple of the traditional radio landscape. Now Spotify has one too. ‘The Get Up’ is a weekday-mornings show, launching in the US only, delivered as a playlist.
That means personalised music picks for each listener, sandwiched between talk segments from the show’s three hosts: Kat Lazo, Speedy Morman, and Xavier Jernigan. The promise is of pop culture, news, entertainment and music chat, and the production company is in-house: Gimlet Media.
The format is an interesting step on from playlists like ‘Your Daily Drive’ and ‘Daily Sports’, which offer personalised mixes of podcast clips and music. ‘The Get Up’ is a full-on radio-style show, which we’d expect to be localised with different hosts in other countries if the US version proves popular.
The post Spotify launches its own radio-style ‘daily morning show’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Canalys thinks 163m smart speakers will be shipped in 2021

It’s been a while since we’ve had some big-figure predictions for the smart speakers market, but here’s research firm Canalys hoving into view with its latest forecasts. It reckons that 163m smart speakers will be shipped in 2021, which would be year-on-year growth (from its estimates for 2020) of 21%. 
Speakers using Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant are expected to account for the bulk of shipments globally except China, where local tech companies’ voice assistants are in command. This is all for new shipments, but Canalys also has some new numbers for the install base – those already owned and in use. That total will be 320m this year, with the company predicting that it will double to 640 million by 2024.
The predictions come at a time when a round of new devices are set to scrap it out for the lucrative pre-Christmas season. Amazon recently unveiled its latest Echo speakers; Google has a new Nest Audio; and Apple is getting into the sub-$100 market with its new HomePod Mini.
The post Canalys thinks 163m smart speakers will be shipped in 2021 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok expands its policies for tackling hateful content

Removing hateful content from a social media or streaming service is a constantly moving target as new movements and forms of hate emerge, and new tricks to avoid moderation.
TikTok is the latest platform to announce how its policies are adapting.
“While our Trust & Safety teams already work to remove hate speech and hateful ideologies, such as neo-Nazism and white supremacy, we are strengthening our enforcement action to remove neighbouring ideologies, such as white nationalism, white genocide theory, as well as statements that have their origin in these ideologies, and movements such as Identitarianism and male supremacy,” it announced yesterday.
The post TikTok expands its policies for tackling hateful content appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Mobile video-streaming service Quibi is shutting down

Barely six months after it launched, video streaming service Quibi is shutting down. “We are winding down the business and looking to sell its content and technology assets,” announced co-founders Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman in a blog post overnight.
“Quibi was a big idea and there was no one who wanted to make a success of it more than we did. Our failure was not for lack of trying; we’ve considered and exhausted every option available to us… Quibi is not succeeding. Likely for one of two reasons: because the idea itself wasn’t strong enough to justify a standalone streaming service or because of our timing.”
Launching a mobile-only video streaming service designed for short-snack viewing during a pandemic that locked people down in their homes with bigger screens was unlucky, but Quibi couldn’t crack the problem even with $1.8bn of funding – one report suggests there’s $350m left to return to investors.
The post Mobile video-streaming service Quibi is shutting down appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The Kid Laroi and Mulatto get Spotify and YouTube approval

Pretty much every major streaming service now has some kind of program to identify and promote emerging artists: Spotify’s Radar, Apple Music’s Up Next, Amazon Music’s Breakthrough, Deezer’s Next, YouTube Music’s Artist on the Rise…
Two of them have announced their latest picks this week. Spotify has made teenage rapper The Kid Laroi its third Radar artist in the US, although with 10.6 million listeners on Spotify, he’s already doing pretty well on the platform. Like other artists chosen for the program, he’ll get playlist spots, a Spotify Singles recording, promotional support for his next releases, and a mini-documentary in November.
Meanwhile, YouTube Music’s latest Artist on the Rise is Atlanta rapper Mulatto. She, too, already has some momentum on the platform, with 928,000 subscribers to her YouTube channel, and has just been featured on YouTube Music’s new weekly show ‘Released’.
The post The Kid Laroi and Mulatto get Spotify and YouTube approval appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify signs podcast development deal with Scooter Braun

Scooter Braun is a man with his finger in many pies, and now he’s added podcasts to his pastry portfolio. In fact, his Ithaca Holdings company has signed a podcast development deal with Spotify (described as a ‘first look’ agreement by Variety, which means Spotify will get first dibs on new shows from Ithaca Holdings).
The first show has already been announced: ‘Country Shine with Graham Bunn’. It’ll be a twice-weekly podcast focusing on country music, hosted by radio and TV veteran Bunn and sports reporter Camryn Irwin.
Braun himself is executive producer on the project, which will be exclusive to Spotify. It’s the latest expansion for Spotify’s country-focused content: earlier this year it launched a new playlist called ‘Indigo’ to sit alongside ‘Hot Country’ and ‘New Boots’ as its genre flagships.
The post Spotify signs podcast development deal with Scooter Braun appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BMG to buy majority stake in German live firm Undercover

As the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic grows in many countries, now’s a very difficult time to be involved in live music. However, it may also be seen as an opportunity by companies looking to make acquisitions in live.
BMG, for example, is getting into live music for the first time, with an agreement to buy a majority stake in German promoter and events agency Undercover.
It will become a new live / events business music within BMG in Germany, with the company pitching the move as a new kind of 360-degree offering for artists.
The post BMG to buy majority stake in German live firm Undercover appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Snapchat now has 249m daily active users and booming AR usage

In our latest Music Ally report, we examined how Snapchat had bounced back from a worrying-looking flattening of its user growth in 2018. That bounceback is continuing, judging by parent company Snap’s financial results for Q3 2020.
Snap said that Snapchat ended the quarter with 249 million daily active users (DAUs), up by 18% year-on-year. It also means that Snapchat added 11 million net new users in Q3 alone.
Not that this is helping it make a profit yet: Snap’s revenues grew by 52.1% year-on-year to $678.7m, but it still recorded a net loss of just under $200m.
The post Snapchat now has 249m daily active users and booming AR usage appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Netflix growth slows but 200m subscribers milestone is in sight

Netflix warned investors that its subscriber growth was going to slow in the second half of this year, and it has. The video streaming service added 2.2 million net new paid subscribers in the third quarter, taking it to just under 195.2 million overall.
Netflix also said that it expects to pass 200 million subscribers (201.2 million to be specific) by the end of 2020.
The slowdown in growth was clear though: Netflix added 15.8 million subscribers in Q1 and 10.1 million in Q2. The 2.2 million in Q3 was below Netflix’s guidance of 2.5 million, which is one reason why its share price dipped following the announcement of its financial results yesterday.
The post Netflix growth slows but 200m subscribers milestone is in sight appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

US Justice Department files antitrust charges against Google

The US Department of Justice has filed a civil antitrust lawsuit against Google, accusing it of “unlawfully maintaining monopolies through anticompetitive and exclusionary practices in the search and search advertising markets”.
It’s the latest (and biggest) move in the US antitrust debate over big tech companies, following the recent high-profile hearing involving Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon.
The DoJ is going in hard, too. “This lawsuit strikes at the heart of Google’s grip over the internet for millions of American consumers, advertisers, small businesses and entrepreneurs beholden to an unlawful monopolist,” said attorney general Bill Barr.
The post US Justice Department files antitrust charges against Google appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

George Michael joins Prince and John Lennon on TikTok

It sounds like a supergroup for the ages, doesn’t it? But what George Michael, Prince and John Lennon have in common is that their estates and labels have been working with TikTok to bring their legacies into the world of short video clips.
A licensing deal for Prince’s music plus an official TikTok profile came in June, followed by a similar partnership for John Lennon earlier this month. Now George Michael, courtesy of a deal with Sony Music UK.
As with the previous deals, this’ll see a selection of Michael’s music made available for TikTokers to use in their videos, along with an official profile with footage from his career. It’s early days, but the clip blending ‘Fast Love’ and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson suggests the account has a decently impish sense of humour.
The post George Michael joins Prince and John Lennon on TikTok appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amazon launches Breakthrough Live weekly livestreams series

The timing may be awkward given the renewed DMCA takedown notices currently battering Twitch, but Amazon Music is stepping up its livestreaming activity, including with its sister platform.
It’s launched a new weekly show called Breakthrough Live, which will air live performances from artists in a different genre every Tuesday. The show will be broadcast live both on Amazon Music’s Twitch channel, and within the Amazon Music mobile app.
It’s part of Amazon’s wider Breakthrough program focusing on emerging artists – its equivalent to Spotify’s Radar or Apple Music’s Up Next. The service has also launched a series of genre-specific Breakthrough playlists, which will include the artists performing on the new weekly show.
The post Amazon launches Breakthrough Live weekly livestreams series appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report claims Spotify has overtaken Apple in key markets for podcast listeners

Reputable figures breaking down the global podcasts market are hard to come by, but there’s been a general consensus that Apple Podcasts (formerly iTunes) has been the biggest platform by far; that the rest of the market is very fragmented; and that Spotify’s aggressive move into podcasts meant it was growing fast to finally become a competitor to Apple with real scale.
Now Midia Research has put out a report suggesting that it’s gone further than that. “Spotify is now firmly established as the most widely used podcast platform,” claimed the company. “In Q2 2020 42% of podcast listeners used Spotify, 10 points ahead of Apple in second place. This does not necessarily mean that it yet leads in terms of volume of listens, but it is the platform that the largest share of regular podcast listeners visit.”
The post Report claims Spotify has overtaken Apple in key markets for podcast listeners appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify takes down four QAnon podcasts after media coverage

We don’t have space here to go into the full lunacy of the QAnon conspiracists movement, and the unwillingness of the actual US president to disavow it.
Suffice to say that YouTube, Facebook and Twitter are among the big online platforms cracking down on QAnon content, but that crackdown has seen its adherents try to shift to other digital spaces. Including putting their podcasts on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and other spoken-word platforms.
Media Matters reported on this late last week, noting that several QAnon shows were still available to listen to on these services. Now Spotify, at least, has removed the shows in question.
The post Spotify takes down four QAnon podcasts after media coverage appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Push Live Unlimited helps artists with simul-livestreaming

As the number of artists exploring livestreams at scale grows, so there’s going to be a need for decent infrastructure around that.
One example is being announced today, by live-tech firm Push. It’s a tool called Push Live Unlimited, which helps artists who want to broadcast on a number of platforms at once – for example, Facebook, YouTube, Twitch, TikTok and Twitter.
The new service has been in testing this past few months: for example, Insomniac’s EDC Mexico used it for a three-day online dance festival, with 87 different livestreams across artists’ and partners’ channels.
The post Push Live Unlimited helps artists with simul-livestreaming appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Kylie Minogue set for Driift-run ‘Infinite Disco’ stream

More evidence for the growing ambition of online concerts for bigger artists comes with Kylie Minogue’s ‘Infinite Disco’ event on 7 November.
It’s the latest event from Driift, the company launched earlier this year by ATC Management, with investment from Beggars Group.
The 50-minute show will blend tracks from Kylie’s new album ‘Disco’ with older hits, with the promise of visual and choreographic wizardry.
The post Kylie Minogue set for Driift-run ‘Infinite Disco’ stream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Billie Eilish merch store will be integrated into livestream

We reported earlier this month on plans for Billie Eilish’s first livestream, the $30 ‘Where Do We Go? The Livestream’ concert on 24 October.
Startup Maestro is the technical partner, and it’s been talking about a new partnership with ecommerce firm Shopify that will see merch sold during the event.
Open to all artists using the platform, it will let fans browse and buy merchandise within the livestream, rather than being pushed out to another website.
The post Billie Eilish merch store will be integrated into livestream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music goes Boss-eyed with its Bruce Springsteen Week

Apple Music is pushing all the boats out for the release of Bruce Springsteen’s 20th studio album ‘Letter to You’.
There’ll be a week of radio shows on its new Apple Music Hits station, plus an album listening party and live Q&A, and a documentary on the Apple TV+ service, which drops on Friday alongside the album.
It’s a big push, and a reminder that Apple Music is now very keen on the classic/heritage audience. Which, we guess, is a category that Gorillaz might also fall into now, although if we’re dividing these things up by station, they’re still an Apple Music 1 artist rather than just Apple Music Hits.
The post Apple Music goes Boss-eyed with its Bruce Springsteen Week appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Believe was the buyer of playlisting platform Soundsgood

In April we reported on the shutdown of French startup Soundsgood. It had launched in 2015 as a way to curate playlists and manage them across multiple streaming services, before moving more towards B2B services for labels.
“These B2B activities have eventually led to our recent acquisition,” announced Soundsgood as it closed down, but the company declined to say who the buyer was.
Now, through the time-honoured journalistic tradition of ‘remembering to look at the former CEO’s LinkedIn profile a few months later’, Music Ally can reveal that the acquirer of Soundsgood was… distributor Believe.
The post Believe was the buyer of playlisting platform Soundsgood appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music TV channels classic MTV with music videos

Live radio is already one of Apple Music’s big differences to its streaming rivals. Now it’s trying out MTV-style music television, although for the most part without the VJs.
Instead, Apple Music TV is a 24-hour channel broadcasting music videos via the Apple Music and Apple TV apps, as well as on the web.
For now, it’s only available in the US, where it kicked off yesterday with a chart of the 100 all-time most streamed songs on Apple Music in that country. It’ll also broadcast livestreams and other artist events, like this Thursday’s Bruce Springsteen special, as well as clips of interviews and other content filmed for Apple Music.
The post Apple Music TV channels classic MTV with music videos appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG set for $338m acquisitions (and possibly revenue decline)

It was a busy day for Warner Music Group yesterday, with several interrelated announcements. First, there was news of the company raising $250m of new funding through a ‘senior secured notes offering’ to be spend to “fund a portion of the aggregate cash consideration for certain acquisitions”.
Later that day, a US regulatory filing offered more information on those plans. “In early October we completed an acquisition for certain music assets, and we recently came to an agreement in principle regarding a second acquisition regarding certain other music and music-related assets… for aggregate cash consideration of approximately $338 million,” explained WMG, noting that it has set aside $90m of cash on top of the $250m offering to pay for the deals.
The post WMG set for $338m acquisitions (and possibly revenue decline) appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The US music market isn’t yet at ‘peak streaming subscriptions’

Is the biggest recorded-music market in the world nearing ‘peak streaming subscriptions’ for music? In an article for Billboard, former Spotify chief economist Will Page offers some reasons for optimism, even though there are now 110 million music subscribers in a country with 110m households.
For example, he notes that there were worries that Sweden and Norway were reaching their ceiling back in 2015, but since then their subscriber numbers have grown by 85% and 78% respectively.
The post The US music market isn’t yet at ‘peak streaming subscriptions’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

PearPop helps fans to pay for screen time with TikTok stars

There’s a price on everything in the influencer world, and with a startup called PearPop, that includes collaborating with your favourite TikTok stars.
The company has announced a marketplace for TikTokers to charge fans for collab posts, and according to TechCrunch it already has more than 25,000 fans signed up.
The fees are public: a duet, stitch or sound post with Coby Persin (who has 7.1 million followers on TikTok) will set you back $500, but with Anna Shumate (who has 6.5 million) it’ll only cost $100, as the two (currently) most popular creators on the site.
The post PearPop helps fans to pay for screen time with TikTok stars appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Instagram promises crackdown on ‘hidden advertising’ in the UK

Since 2018, UK regulator the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been running an investigation into whether influencers on social media are disclosing their endorsements properly.
In January 2019, that included eliciting ‘formal commitments’ from 16 British celebrities to be fully transparent, including musicians Rita Ora and Ellie Goulding.
This week, the investigation has put Instagram in the spotlight, as the CMA announced that it has secured promises from the Facebook-owned platform to do more to help.
The post Instagram promises crackdown on ‘hidden advertising’ in the UK appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Defected to hold three-part ‘We Dance As One’ livestream

Dance label Defected Records did a great job earlier this year with its ‘Virtual Festival’ series of livestreams, raising $1.2m for the World Health Organization’s Covid-19 relief fund over 10 weeks.
Now it’s coming back with a new event called ‘We Dance As One’ spread over three dates: 30 October, 27 November and a finale spanning New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.
DJs will be streaming sets from their home studios or from local clubs, with the broadcasts viewable on YouTube, Facebook and Twitch.
The post Defected to hold three-part ‘We Dance As One’ livestream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Reshape Music report outlines challenges for disabled musicians

UK charity Youth Music has published a new report, Reshape Music, which explores the challenges facing disabled musicians ‘in education and beyond’. It’s the result of interviews with hundreds of musicians, music educators and retailers.
“Disabled people make up over a fifth of the population and yet they are hugely under-represented in the music industry and in music education,” is the key problem tackled by the report, with Youth Music keen for its findings to inform policy in the UK to change that.
The challenges outlined range from finding and buying the right instrument, to accessing music lessons and getting opportunities to perform.
The post Reshape Music report outlines challenges for disabled musicians appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

British parliament launches inquiry into economics of music streaming

For several months, the #BrokenRecord campaign in the UK has been calling for the government to step in to the debate about musicians’ streaming royalties. Today, there’s been a significant announcement on that front.
No, not legislation (yet). The British parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) committee has launched an inquiry into the economics of music streaming.
“MPs will examine what economic impact music streaming is having on artists, record labels and the sustainability of the wider music industry,” it explained.
“Music streaming in the UK brings in more than £1 billion in revenue with 114 billion music streams in the last year, however artists can be paid as little as 13% of the income generated.”
The post British parliament launches inquiry into economics of music streaming appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s new format puts music in podcasts – and pays royalties

Podcasters regularly complain about the difficulty and/or cost of licensing commercial music for their shows. With hundreds of millions of people now listening to podcasts globally, there’s a big opportunity for the music industry, if good licensing models can be worked out to put music in podcasts, while ensuring that rightsholders and musicians get paid.
Hang on though. Spotify has a huge catalogue of licensed music, is one of the biggest podcast distribution platforms, and has its own tool (Anchor) for creating podcasts. Couldn’t it do something about the problem? And today, it has.
The streaming service is announcing a new format – an “evolution” of its mixed-media playlists like Your Daily Drive – which will enable podcasters to put music in their shows, and for streams of those shows to generate royalties for the rightsholders.
The post Spotify’s new format puts music in podcasts – and pays royalties appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Disney reorganisation makes streaming its ‘primary focus’

Streaming being the primary focus for record labels is nothing new in our industry, but in Hollywood it’s still a major talking point.
Witness Disney’s announcement yesterday that the company is having a strategic reorganisation of its media and entertainment businesses “designed to further accelerate the company’s direct-to-consumer strategy, in light of the rapid success of Disney+”.
This isn’t Disney abandoning cinemas entirely, of course, but the announcement did make it clear that it’s now the company’s own streaming services (note the plural: Hulu and ESPN+ are included here) that come first, and the “legacy distribution business” second.
The post Disney reorganisation makes streaming its ‘primary focus’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Motive Unknown launches sister company Positive Subversion

Digital marketing agency Motive Unknown is spinning off a new company called Positive Subversion, which it describes as a “project and label management consultancy for independently-minded artists, managers and record labels”.
It’s a partnership with former !K7 exec Siofra McComb, and has already signed up Run The Jewels (already a Motive Unknown client) and label Innovative Leisure as its first clients.
“Managers are taking on more and more, but often lack the hands-on resource to manage the minutiae of a release campaign. We have also seen that taking on permanent staff in this space doesn’t make good sense due to the cyclical nature of campaigns,” said Motive Unknown boss Darren Hemmings.
The post Motive Unknown launches sister company Positive Subversion appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Monstercat goes ‘hyper-casual’ with Amanotes mobile games deal

Electronic music label Monstercat has always been keen to get its music into games, with a series of inventive licensing deals and partnerships. Its latest is with Amanotes, the Vietnamese developer of ‘hyper-casual’ mobile games.
The deal has already made some of Monstercat’s catalogue available within Amanotes’ biggest mobile game, Tiles Hop (350m downloads and counting) with plans to add the tracks to more than 30 of its other games by the end of this year.
Amanotes says it has more than 95 million monthly active users across those games, with a demographic dominated by 25-44 year-old women.
The post Monstercat goes ‘hyper-casual’ with Amanotes mobile games deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Feeling Good: free report on music, fitness, wellbeing and technology

Earlier this month, Music Ally teamed up with British industry body the BPI for an online event called ‘Feeling Good’ about the intersection of music, fitness/wellbeing and technology.
Now we’ve published a tie-in report, which you can download for free here. In it, we’ve explored some of the companies who’ve been innovating in these areas, from Peloton and Calm to Weav Music, FitXR, Headspace and more.
We’ve also looked at the playlist ecosystems emerging around fitness and wellbeing on streaming services; explained ‘gymfluencers’ and their musical activities; and reported on the views of 7digital and a panel of experts (WMG’s Scott Cohen, CrossBorderWorks Consulting’s Vickie Naumann and Sound Media Ventures’ Shachar Oren) convened at the event. Enjoy!
The post Feeling Good: free report on music, fitness, wellbeing and technology appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report: Triller could go public with shell-company merger

Remember those July reports that short-video app Triller was raising a funding round of up to $300m? Whatever happened to that? Reuters has an update, claiming that the company has “so far secured around $100 million in that round at a $1.25 billion valuation” according to unnamed sources “familiar with the matter”.
However, the report claims that Triller may opt against the funding round after all, and instead go public via a merger with a ‘SPAC’ (a special purpose acquisition company: a shell company formed solely to raise money through an IPO, then merge with a private company to take the latter public).
SPACs are currently popular in the US for “providing a path to going public with less regulatory scrutiny and more certainty over the valuation that will be attained and funds that will be raised” according to Reuters.
The post Report: Triller could go public with shell-company merger appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Soundtrack Your Brand renews WMG deal, launches on-demand tier

B2B streaming service Soundtrack Your Brand has renewed its licensing deal with Warner Music Group, a couple of months after striking an agreement with Universal Music Group.
In WMG’s case, it’s a renewal of the deal signed two years ago with Soundtrack Your Brand, which provides music to businesses including retailers, restaurants and hotels.
The news came as the company also announced a new tier for its service, Soundtrack Unlimited, which will offer customers on-demand access to its playlists (rather than just being able to play them as curated) and enable them to build their own playlists, for a higher price.
The post Soundtrack Your Brand renews WMG deal, launches on-demand tier appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

US gets new #SaveLiveEventsNow campaign to support live music

We’ve written about the #SaveOurStages campaign in the US to support independent music venues, launched by their representative body NIVA. Now there’s another campaign, #SaveLiveEventsNow, which expands the remit to larger venues and the people who work on concerts and festivals using them.
It’s backed by a who’s who of the industry: the RIAA, Recording Academy, Live Nation, AEG Presents, Universal Music Group, key talent agencies and more.
“Saving our stages is one component of what our industry needs,” claims the new campaign’s website, making its status as a reaction to NIVA’s drive clear. “We also need to save the people who power live events so that they can bring music, theater, comedy and all kinds of culture back when the show can go on once again.”
The post US gets new #SaveLiveEventsNow campaign to support live music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Round Hill Music confirms plans for $375m Royalty Fund IPO

The rumours were right: music publisher Round Hill Music is planning to take its songs fund public. The Round Hill Music Royalty Fund has announced plans to raise $375m through an IPO on the London Stock Exchange. You can read its announcement here.
The company says it has already identified more than 40 catalogues containing more than 120k songs that it plans to buy with the proceeds from the IPO.
The lineup of artists whose work is included in those catalogues is long and starry: The Beatles, Celine Dion, the Rolling Stones, Louis Armstrong, Marvin Gaye, Elvis Presley and… well, you get the picture.
The post Round Hill Music confirms plans for $375m Royalty Fund IPO appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

SongShift says Spotify won’t let it transfer people’s playlists

Almost as long as there have been a number of popular music streaming services, there have been apps and websites designed to help people transfer their playlists between them (for example when leaving one service to join another) or to maintain playlists across several of them (aimed at curators more than regular users).
Nobody’s found a great business model for these tools yet, but at any point there have been a few to choose from. One of the current crop is SongShift, an iOS app that shifts playlists between services including Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube, Pandora and Tidal. This weekend, the developers made an announcement.
“Unfortunately, as of SongShift v5.1.2, you will no longer be able to create transfers from Spotify to another music service. We understand this will be a disappointment for a lot of you. We wish we didn’t have to,” they wrote.
The post SongShift says Spotify won’t let it transfer people’s playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Report: TikTok now more popular than Instagram with US teens

Investment bank Piper Sandler publishes a semi-annual study of US teenagers – 9,800 of them for its latest drop. It covers all kinds of topics, from social and political issues to favoured brands, but digital habits are also included.
The big news from the latest study is the claim that TikTok has just overtaken Instagram to become the second-ranked social media platform for teenagers in the US, although the top dog remains Snapchat.
The post Report: TikTok now more popular than Instagram with US teens appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify adds ‘promo cards’ feature for artists and podcasters

Spotify’s now traditional end-of-year Wrapped promotion sees artists and listeners alike flooding social media with branded graphics on their stats.
Now the streaming service is extending that idea for artists (and podcasters) with a feature called ‘Promo Cards’.
It’s an online tool that they can use to create promotional graphics for songs, albums and artist profiles – as well as for a selection of Spotify’s playlists when they have a track included on them – ready for sharing on social media.
The post Spotify adds ‘promo cards’ feature for artists and podcasters appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Major labels target Apple in Russia over iOS piracy apps

It’s been a while since we’ve seen public tensions in the west between music rightsholders and Apple over piracy apps – Apple’s involvement being as the owner of the store through which those apps are distributed.
According to TorrentFreak, it’s all kicking off in Russia over this issue though, following a new law cracking down on piracy apps.
It reported that Sony Music, Universal Music and WMG subsidiary SBA Music Publishing have filed complaints against Apple in the Moscow City Court, requesting that the company remove three apps: PewPee: Music Player, iMus Music Player and Offline Music Download Music / Music Downloader & Player (which must be in line for some kind of SEO prize).
The post Major labels target Apple in Russia over iOS piracy apps appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Livestreaming startup Mandolin raises $5m in seed funding

Six months ago, livestreaming was in many quarters seen as a temporary sticking plaster for the shutdown of physical concerts, likely to return to a niche once the latter returned.
A lot of people have changed their tune since then: physical concerts aren’t returning anywhere near as soon as we had hoped, and successful livestreaming case are steadily mounting up to make a case for online concerts to stick around for the long term.
That in turn is fuelling a boom in innovation from and funding for livestreaming startups. The latest example is US firm Mandolin, which was behind the recent ‘Live at the Ryman’ concerts in Nashville.
The post Livestreaming startup Mandolin raises $5m in seed funding appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

US Latin music revenues grew by 18.6% in first half of 2020

US trade body the RIAA has published its mid-year figures for Latin music in the US, and once again it has outperformed the overall market.
The body recently reported that the US recorded music market grew by 5.6% year-on-year in the first half of 2020, but revenues from Latin music grew by 18.6%.
At $296.1m, it accounted for 5.2% of the overall market. What’s more, this particular sector’s growth is accelerating: in the first half of 2019, it was up by 13.5% year-on-year.
The post US Latin music revenues grew by 18.6% in first half of 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Radio Tools tracks music plays on radio and TV stations

The ‘will streaming kill radio’ debate rumbles on, but it certainly hasn’t happened yet: radio airplay remains important for many artists, and tracking it globally remains a challenge.
We’ve written about startups like World Airplay Radio Monitor (Warm) in the past, and now there’s a new contender: Maltese startup Radio Tools.
It’s analysing the music played on more than 48k radio stations around the world, as well as 1.2k satellite TV channels.
The post Radio Tools tracks music plays on radio and TV stations appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BPI launches its equality and justice advisory group

British music industry body the BPI has launched an equality and justice advisory group, which it says will “advise and challenge the BPI on matters initially focused on race and gender in order to further support and promote equality and inclusion in music alongside other industry initiatives”.
It’s an expansion of the existing Brits Diversity Advisory Group, which was created in 2016 after criticism of a lack of diversity in the Brit Awards and its voting body.
The new group, which will have a wider industry focus, is co-chaired by Kwame Kwaten, Paulette Long OBE, and Ged Doherty.
The post BPI launches its equality and justice advisory group appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ascap Lab Seed Project reveals first projects from its teams

The more music industry entities working hands-on with startups and developers the better, as far as we’re concerned.
The latest example is US collecting society Ascap, whose innovation arm Ascap Lab has been running an 11-week ‘Seed Project’ challenge for graduate students in New York.
Five teams were involved, exploring new ways to interact with music. You can read the results of their work here.
The post Ascap Lab Seed Project reveals first projects from its teams appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Oda connected speakers have their own season of concerts

Oda is a startup making a pair of speakers (also called Oda) that look very nice indeed – “made of wood, glass, cotton, and steel: materials that are humble and human, not technological” as the blurb puts it – with as much attention to detail paid to their audio innards.
However, what interests us about the $299 speakers (which work with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi) is the music that comes with them.
Oda will be running four seasons of music performances a year: 12 weekends in each of winter, spring, summer and autumn, plus artists in residence performing throughout the week during that time.
The post Oda connected speakers have their own season of concerts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Deezer commissioned covers for its new ‘InVersions’ album

Like its streaming rivals, Deezer is experimenting with commissioning original music that won’t put labels’ noses out of joint.
The latest example is a compilation album called ‘InVersions’, which is a collection of cover versions by 10 independent artists.
Fontaines DC, Arlo Parks, Dream Wife, Alfie Templeman and Chloe Moriondo are among the artists chosen – the latter with a very on-trend cover of Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Dreams’.
Standards by the Beach Boys, Robyn, Bruce Springsteen, Amy Winehouse and Sinéad O’Connor are among the songs covered, and the album has been released through the Deezer Originals program.
The post Deezer commissioned covers for its new ‘InVersions’ album appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify for Artists has a new boss, joining from Patreon

Camille Hearst was the head of product, creator and general manager, merch at crowdfunding platform Patreon, until now. As of today, she’s joining Spotify as its first head of Spotify for Artists. Hearst announced the news in a series of tweets this afternoon.
“In this new role, I’ll lead a cross-functional team including product, tech, design, user research, and more. Not to mention getting to work closely with the SoundBetter team…what a cool platform,” she wrote.
“I’ve spent almost the entirety of my career working on helping artists and creators make a living from their craft. And now I get to continue that work at one of the companies best-positioned to make a serious dent in this space.”
The post Spotify for Artists has a new boss, joining from Patreon appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Lyte tests ticket reservation tool for return of physical gigs

A lot of physical concerts have been cancelled during the Covid-19 pandemic, but it’s been heartening how many fans have held onto their tickets for the ones that have been postponed – even those delayed for a year or more. Now ticketing firm Lyte has developed a tool that capitalises on this loyalty in a different […]
The post Lyte tests ticket reservation tool for return of physical gigs appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Nearly 1.2m people attended Ava Max’s party in Roblox

Last month we wrote about the plans to hold an album launch party for artist Ava Max in gaming platform Roblox. So how did that go? Well, according to the public stats, the ‘Ava Max Heaven & Hell Launch Party’ has generated more than 2.4m visits from Roblox players, with nearly 49,000 people marking it as a favourite. […]
The post Nearly 1.2m people attended Ava Max’s party in Roblox appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Smule adds Snapchat lenses to its AutoRap music app

Music apps firm Smule is the latest company to use the Snap Camera Kit launched by Snapchat’s parent company. Smule has integrated it into its AutoRap app, which lets people choose beats, rap over the top and share the results. Now they can add Snapchat’s augmented-reality lenses (filters) to their videos in AutoRap’s iOS app, with Android […]
The post Smule adds Snapchat lenses to its AutoRap music app appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

African streaming service Mdundo has 5m monthly active users

Mdundo is one of the established music streaming services in Africa, and its CEO Martin Nielsen has been talking to Nigerian news site Pulse·ng about its latest figures, and the wider African music market. According to the piece, Mdundo currently has more than five million monthly active users across Africa, including 3.5 million in its key markets […]
The post African streaming service Mdundo has 5m monthly active users appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ascap thanks Spotify for accelerated payments during Covid-19

Spotify has taken plenty of flak from songwriters over its history, and with its appeal against new royalty rates in the US still not settled, there’ll be more to come we’re sure. However, the streaming service will at least have enjoyed the latest letter to members of US collecting society Ascap from its president and chairman Paul […]
The post Ascap thanks Spotify for accelerated payments during Covid-19 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Mixcloud adds ticketing for audio and video livestreams

Audio streaming service Mixcloud launched a livestreaming feature in April this year, enabling people to stream live audio or video on its platform. Today, it’s announcing an expansion of ‘Mixcloud Live’ to add ticketing. Several artists will be testing the new feature out, including Flying Lotus, Róisín Murphy and Nas (who recently invested in Mixcloud, which […]
The post Mixcloud adds ticketing for audio and video livestreams appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify and YouTube double down on their music charts

The charts of digital music services having clout with consumers and the industry alike isn’t a new trend for anyone who remembers the heyday of Apple’s iTunes rankings around the world. We’re interested in the current burst of activity around streaming services’ charts though. Both Spotify and YouTube Music had announcements this week shedding more […]
The post Spotify and YouTube double down on their music charts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Scooter Braun on the silver linings of the Covid-19 pandemic

Manager and investor Scooter Braun appeared at the Fast Company Innovation Festival this week, and had plenty to say on the music industry’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic. “With all this time, we are creating new lanes that didn’t exist before. When you talk about your work life, I always tell people . . . build time […]
The post Scooter Braun on the silver linings of the Covid-19 pandemic appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify CEO Daniel Ek outlines his leadership style

The Observer Effect has published a long interview with Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, focusing on his management style and processes.
So, there aren’t many news lines for the likes of us to pick out on Spotify’s business, but lots of food for thought for anyone wondering what they can learn from the way its CEO runs the company.
The post Spotify CEO Daniel Ek outlines his leadership style appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Dua Lipa launches TikTok-assisted ‘Levitating’ music video

In August, Dua Lipa launched her #DuaVideo challenge on TikTok, inviting fans to submit videos based on makeup, animation or dance using her ‘Levitating’ single.
The promise was that the best creators would make it into a music video for the track. TikTok says that the contest generated more than 150k videos which were watched more than 300m times.
Now the promised music video has launched – as a four-part vertical video on TikTok itself. A clever touch: it’s been uploaded to Dua Lipa’s profile in reverse order, so the first part is at the top of her feed, and fans can swipe down to move through the four parts.
The post Dua Lipa launches TikTok-assisted ‘Levitating’ music video appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

AiR Show augmented-reality concerts app acquired for $300k

This might just be a record for the shortest gap between a startup being first covered by Music Ally, and being acquired.
We wrote about Trick 3D and its ‘AiR Show’ app a couple of weeks ago: it promised to beam artists into fans’ living rooms using augmented reality technology, for performances.
It had a partnership with an upcoming series of livestream concerts in Atlanta, but now it’s been snapped up by a bigger company.
The post AiR Show augmented-reality concerts app acquired for $300k appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Charli XCX to kick off Oculus and Tidal’s VR concerts series

We knew that Tidal and Facebook’s Oculus were working together on plans for some virtual reality concerts. Now we know who’s playing the first one: Charli XCX, who’ll be performing within the Oculus Venues app this Friday (9 October).
It’s the first of a series of six concerts organised by the companies, each of which will see an artist playing at least a 45-minute set. The other five artists in this series have yet to be confirmed.
It’s part of a wider push into VR concerts by Oculus using its Venues app. Alicia Keys performed in a concert on 18 September backed by American Express; Tiësto held a ‘virtual dance party’ in the app on 24 September; Steve Aoki played on 30 September; and Major Lazer are lined up for 18 November – these aren’t Tidal shows.
The post Charli XCX to kick off Oculus and Tidal’s VR concerts series appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Fender Play nears 1m subscribers thanks to free lessons

Instrument maker Fender is extending a promotion offering three months of free access to its Fender Play digital guitar-lessons service.
The promo launched in April, shortly after Covid-19 lockdowns began in many countries. Fender says that the Fender Play user base has grown from 150,000 to 930,000 subscribers since then.
With the promo extended until the end of 2020, that community of learners seems set to pass one million very soon.
The post Fender Play nears 1m subscribers thanks to free lessons appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Gema warns of ‘even more difficult’ 2021 for many musicians

Germany collecting society Gema held its annual general meeting last week – online, of course, with around 1,000 of its songwriter, composer and publisher members taking part.
The event included some blunt words from CEO Dr Harald Heker on why Covid-19 relief measures taken by the society this year can only go so far.
“We are aware that these acute support schemes are not enough. From a financial perspective, 2021 will be even more difficult for many of you. Our revenues will be lower than in 2020, and we will therefore pay out less to you,” he warned delegates at the AGM. “Since March, hardly any events have taken place, which is an economic disaster of huge proportions.”
The post Gema warns of ‘even more difficult’ 2021 for many musicians appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Triller denies new allegations of inflated user numbers

Short video app Triller has found itself at the centre of another controversy around its public user numbers. A report by Business Insider citing ‘six former Triller employees’ claimed that when Triller said in October 2019 that it had 13 million monthly active users, the true figure was “closer to two million”.
The details are important here: the report cited a screenshot from analytics tool Localytics, taken by one of those former employees a few weeks after the 13 million announcement, which appeared to show that Triller had “just 2 million monthly active iOS users and about 484,000 monthly active users on Android devices”.
The post Triller denies new allegations of inflated user numbers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Roli boss talks Lumi keyboard and music education’s evolution

Music Ally first came across Roli in 2013, when it was named as a finalist in the SXSW Music Accelerator startups contest, before we reported on its $12.8m funding round the following year from investors including Universal Music Group.
The company was focused on music instruments, with its first being the Seaboard Grand, a keyboard whose rubber keys allowed players to bend notes a bit like a guitar. It was priced for professionals, but it marked the company out as one to watch in the music hardware space.
Since then, Roli’s products have been getting more accessible and affordable: there was the Seaboard Rise in 2015; the Roli Blocks modular synth controllers in 2016; the Seaboard Block keyboard in 2017; and then the Lumi keyboard in 2019.
Lumi, which launched with a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign that drummed up £1.6m in pre-orders, was a hardware/software/service play. A keyboard that could light up with different colours, designed to be used with an app that would teach you to play piano, with access to a subscription-based library of lessons and songs.
The post Roli boss talks Lumi keyboard and music education’s evolution appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amazon Music HD adds ‘thousands’ of tracks from UMG and WMG

We should clarify this headline quickly: Amazon Music HD already has many more tracks from Universal Music and Warner Music.
The news is that Amazon is working with the two labels to remaster thousands of tracks in ‘Ultra High Definition’ for its hi-res streaming service.
Amazon’s definition of Ultra HD is tracks with a bit depth of 24 bits and a sample rate of up to 192kHz, and it has more than 5m of them already. However, the bulk of Amazon Music HD’s catalogue is its 60m-plus ‘High Definition’ tracks – 16 bits / 44.1kHz.
The post Amazon Music HD adds ‘thousands’ of tracks from UMG and WMG appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok creator fund reportedly paying 2-4 cents per 1,000 views

TikTok’s Creator Fund started as a $200m commitment in July to be distributed among US-based TikTokers trying to build careers on the platform. It quickly expanded to a promised $1bn over three years, with a European fund following in September aiming for $300m over three years.
Beyond those big headline numbers, though, details of how the funding works and how much money creators can make from it have been scarcer. This article on online-video industry site Tubefilter is worth a read, then.
The site has been canvassing some of the early recipients to assess the fund’s impact.
The post TikTok creator fund reportedly paying 2-4 cents per 1,000 views appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

ShareChat’s Times Music deal includes short-video app Moj

Moj is one of the short-video apps making hay in India in the wake of TikTok’s ban there. Launched in July, it grew to 50 million users within a month, then 80 million by late September, when its parent company ShareChat raised $40m of funding to continue the momentum.
ShareChat said then that partnerships with music labels would be one use for the funding: a sensible strategy, as Indian rightsholders have been rumbling about the lack of licences in the short-video space generally there.
A week on, there’s news of a deal: ShareChat has inked an agreement with Times Music that covers both Moj and its existing ShareChat social app. It includes Times Music’s catalogue, and also that of Punjabi-music label Speed Records.
The post ShareChat’s Times Music deal includes short-video app Moj appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Triller gets a licensing deal with pan-Euro licensing hub Ice

Triller has been making the most of TikTok’s recent troubles, poaching creators, trumpeting its user growth and even pitching itself in the US as “a form of patriotic capitalism”. But with that higher profile has come scrutiny of Triller’s licensing status, not least from US publishing body the NMPA.
On the other side of the Atlantic, in Europe, Triller has a new licensing deal in place today though. It’s with Ice, the pan-European licensing hub originally created by collecting societies PRS for Music, Gema and Stim.
“The deal covers Triller from its launch and will support the growing service by licensing it into 160+ territories for rights represented by Ice’s society and publisher rights holders,” announced Ice – the latter group including Concord, Downtown and Peermusic.
The post Triller gets a licensing deal with pan-Euro licensing hub Ice appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG’s latest partnerships: Tips Music in India and SOSV in Asia

Post-IPO, there’s a flurry of dealmaking and senior appointments happening at Warner Music Group, as the company gears up for its next stage of growth. Today alone it has announced new partnerships with Indian company Tips Music and investment firm SOSV.
The former deal will see Warner Music India distributing the film-music label’s music in India, while WMG’s distribution division ADA will handle it worldwide.
“Tips’ Hindi YouTube content receives more than 5.1 billion views per month, so the appetite for its music is there for everyone to see,” said Warner Music India MD Jay Mehta.
The post WMG’s latest partnerships: Tips Music in India and SOSV in Asia appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The bigger picture around Twitch, music licensing, and industry criticism

When we reported on the launch of Soundtrack by Twitch earlier this week, we had a sneaking suspicion that we’d be hearing from the publishing sector – and US representative body the NMPA’s boss David Israelite – sooner rather than later with some opinions. And lo, he’s one of the interviewees in a Rolling Stone follow-up about the wider question of whether a platform like Twitch needs proper sync licensing.
“Watching a video on Twitch is really no different than watching a television show or a movie. The people making television programming or movies — there’s no question that before they use music, they go out and secure the proper rights and they negotiate a fair compensation for the people who made the music,” said Israelite.
“Somehow, these giant Internet companies have convinced themselves that they should be playing under different rules. Instead of acting like someone broadcasting television or movie content to consumers, they want to pretend that it’s the users making the content that somehow have all the responsibility, and not the platform — despite the fact that they are making significant amounts of money from the activity.”
The post The bigger picture around Twitch, music licensing, and industry criticism appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Rewind and remix radio with Teenage Engineering’s new OB-4

Teenage Engineering’s pocket-sized synthesizers are marvellous, but now the Swedish company is applying its innovation skills to radio.
Its latest device, the OB-4, is pitched as a “magic radio” – a portable Bluetooth speaker that can also receive FM radio broadcasts. The twists being that, well, owners will be able to twist the audio itself.
“OB–4 continuously memorises everything you listen to on an endless looping tape,” explained the company – said tape being a rolling two-hour recording to its internal storage. “Rewind, time-stretch and loop at the flick of your fingertips. on purpose or by accident.”
The post Rewind and remix radio with Teenage Engineering’s new OB-4 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Baidu’s smart devices and voice assistants arm is worth $2.9bn

Smart speakers and voice assistants are increasingly popular, but what’s their value in corporate terms?
It’s hard to tell given that many of the companies making them – Apple, Google and Amazon included – don’t split out their revenues from this technology, and the companies’ market caps are based on their entire businesses.
But here’s a number to play with: $2.9bn. That’s the valuation of Chinese tech firm Baidu’s ‘Smart Living’ group, which includes its smart speakers and displays, as well as its voice assistant.
The post Baidu’s smart devices and voice assistants arm is worth $2.9bn appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify adds video for ‘Written by’ songwriter playlists

In February this year, Spotify launched a beta ‘Songwriter Pages’ feature offering more visibility for songwriters on its service, including their own profile pages and playlists of recordings of their works.
Today, it’s expanding that with video on some of those pages. Songwriters Mike Dean, Raye and Cautious Clay are the first to get the treatment, with videos in their ‘Written By’ playlists showing them discussing their careers and collaborations.
The videos are part of the wider efforts of Spotify’s songwriter relations team, which have also recently included a ‘Songwriter Saturday’ series of interviews on the Spotify for Artists Instagram profile, and another Instagram series called Writer’s Pad.
The post Spotify adds video for ‘Written by’ songwriter playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Rockifi streaming service will focus on hard rock and metal

Scottish startup Rockifi isn’t brand new: back in 2018 it was being hailed as ‘Tinder for rock fans’ with an app that helped rock and metal fans find likeminded fans to go to concerts with.
However, it’s relaunching this month with a bigger ambition: to be a fully fledged streaming service for hard rock and heavy metal.
“It will allow fans to stream live events, discover and rate new artists, purchase merchandise and donate funds to support bands and workers in the Covid-afflicted music community,” reported Herald Scotland, adding that Rockifi is looking to raise up to £350k to fund its next stage of development.
The post Rockifi streaming service will focus on hard rock and metal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Boomy expands free tier and adds vocals to its AI music

Boomy is the startup that lets anyone sign up and create music using its AI tool – and then release it to streaming services. We’ve covered the company regularly (this profile for example), and now the company has launched a major update to its platform. That includes an expansion of its free tier: “Starting today, […]
The post Boomy expands free tier and adds vocals to its AI music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Deezer still pushing for user-centric payouts: ‘We will continue fighting…’

Just over a year ago, music streaming service Deezer announced its desire to launch a pilot of a ‘user-centric payment system’ (UCPS) by early 2020.
You can read our primer on the user-centric model here, but in a nutshell, it ensures that the money from your streaming subscription only goes to the music you listen to.
It feels like a fairer way to divide out streaming royalties than the current system, where the royalties from your subscription go into a big pool divided by overall share of streams.
[In another nutshell: if BTS or Taylor Swift or Drake or whoever get 5% of everyone’s streams, they get 5% of your subscription even if you never listen to them.]
Nobody’s quite sure exactly who’ll benefit from a switch to user-centric: there have been a few academic studies, and they were all cautious about drawing big, bold conclusions.
That’s exactly why Deezer wanted to run a pilot, in just one country (France) and only with labels (not publishers or collecting societies), to gauge the impact. The company said it had “the majority of French labels” on board, yet a year later the pilot still hasn’t launched.
Yesterday, for a special episode of our Music Ally TV Show, Deezer’s chief content and strategy officer Alexander Holland joined us for an update, and to talk about why the company is still keen to test UCPS.
The post Deezer still pushing for user-centric payouts: ‘We will continue fighting…’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Soundtrack by Twitch offers licensed music to streamers

Livestreaming platform Twitch is launching a new feature, Soundtrack by Twitch, with a catalogue of licensed music for its community of creators to use in their streams.
The Amazon-owned company has licensed more than 1m tracks from more than 30 independent labels and distributors for the beta launch, in what’s its second attempt at an in-house music library.
Labels on board include Anjunabeats, Chillhop, Empire, Monstercat, Nuclear Blast and Alpha Pup. The initial distributor partners are DistroKid, UnitedMasters and SoundCloud.
The post Soundtrack by Twitch offers licensed music to streamers appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amuse / Midia report explores Covid-19 lockdown trends for musicians

Distributor Amuse and consultancy Midia Research have teamed up for their second report on the independent music community.
One of the headline figures from Independent Artists: Pathfinding Through a Pandemic – that the ‘artists direct’ sector grew by 32% to $873m in 2019 – isn’t a new stat, having originally been published by Midia in March this year.
However, the new report has fresh material on the impact that the Covid-19 pandemic has been having on independent musicians, from their incomes to their creative processes, based on responses from 376 artists.
The post Amuse / Midia report explores Covid-19 lockdown trends for musicians appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Four Tet gets his own looping chillout stream on YouTube

Channels like ChilledCow and Chillhop Music can do it. Hollywood star Will Smith can do it. Even Pepsi can do it. So why can’t Four Tet? He can!
The ‘it’ in question being ‘looping lo-fi chillout music streams on YouTube’ of course.
Electronic artist Four Tet has what appears to be a 12-hour loop that began streaming on his YouTube channel on 23 September.
The post Four Tet gets his own looping chillout stream on YouTube appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube Music tests Spotify Daily Mix-style ‘My Mix’ playlists

Spotify launched its Daily Mix playlists in 2016 as a collection of personalised playlists based on different ‘clusters’ of a listener’s musical tastes. Now it looks like YouTube Music is launching a similar feature.
Tech blog Android Police reported on some users seeing up to seven new ‘My Mix’ playlists, each seemingly based on a different genre or group of related artists.
They’re sitting within the ‘Mixed for You’ shelf on the service alongside ‘Your Mix’ (an endless personalised stream covering all genres) as well as ‘Discover Mix’ and ‘New Release Mix’.
The post YouTube Music tests Spotify Daily Mix-style ‘My Mix’ playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Michelle Obama Spotify podcast spreads to other platforms

‘The Michelle Obama Podcast’ is perhaps the most high-profile show that’s exclusive to Spotify. Well, it was until today.
Spotify has announced that the show, co-produced with the Obamas’ production company Higher Ground, will now be available on “a number of additional platforms”.
It didn’t say which platforms, but there’s already a listing for the show on Apple Podcasts, seemingly ready for the first season to debut there, so even Spotify’s fiercest rival appears to be getting the show.
The post Michelle Obama Spotify podcast spreads to other platforms appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

As Trump stews, TikTok launches an in-app US elections guide

We’re still waiting to find out what the Trump administration will do in response to a judge blocking its ban of TikTok in the US.
We suspect the president won’t be too keen on its latest feature though: an in-app guide to the 2020 elections.
It will provide TikTok users with information about candidates; explain how to vote in each state; and will offer “educational videos about misinformation, media literacy, the elections process, and more”.
The post As Trump stews, TikTok launches an in-app US elections guide appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube singalong to celebrate Oasis album’s 25th anniversary

It’s about to turn 25 years since the release of Oasis’s second album ‘(What’s the Story) Morning Glory?’, which several members of our editorial team are in firm age-related denial about.
The band remains on hiatus thanks to ongoing tensions between its founding brothers, but celebrations are afoot on YouTube.
This Friday (2 October) there’s going to be an ‘official album playback and singalong event’ starting at 6pm BST, which will showcase the recently remastered (in both an audio and video sense) music videos for some of the album’s key tracks.
The post YouTube singalong to celebrate Oasis album’s 25th anniversary appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify could face an Apple-style payments fight with Google

With recent app store controversies involving Spotify and Epic Games, the focus has been squarely on Apple and its App Store, even though the Fortnite publisher also has issues with Google and its Google Play store.
Spotify’s relationship with Google has been much friendlier: the companies have teamed up on smart-speaker giveaways, and Spotify has used direct credit-card billing for subscriptions in its Android app without also offering Google’s in-app purchases.
There may be trouble ahead. In a blog post this week, Google revealed not new rules, but plans to enforce the old rules that it hasn’t really been enforcing on Google Play.
The post Spotify could face an Apple-style payments fight with Google appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Marvel goes K-Pop with SM Entertainment / SuperM collab

Korean music company SM Entertainment has announced a partnership with Marvel Entertainment, with K-Pop group SuperM first to benefit – just in time for the release last Friday of their debut album ‘Super One’.
There’s a range of dual-branded merchandise available from the SuperM online store: t-shirts, hats, luggage stickers, and special packages with the album and various items in.
“The new initiative serves as a launch point between SME and Marvel to create future SuperM x Marvel co-branded content, products, and live fan experiences spanning the SME portfolio,” announced SME on Friday.
The post Marvel goes K-Pop with SM Entertainment / SuperM collab appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

J-Lo and Maluma’s #PatiChallenge races to 1.2bn TikTok views (but…)

Well, it sort of has, and sort of hasn’t. We’ll explain. Last week we reported on the marketing campaign around Jennifer Lopez and Maluma’s new singles ‘Pa Ti’ and ‘Lonely’, including a #PatiChallenge on TikTok launched with influencer Charli D’Amelio.
Her video has been watched 24.4m times so far, but videos using the challenge’s hashtag have racked up more than 1.2bn views.
Here’s the big caveat: when a challenge starts trending, all manner of TikTokers jump on the bandwagon, slapping the hashtag in their videos no matter what music track they’re using.
The post J-Lo and Maluma’s #PatiChallenge races to 1.2bn TikTok views (but…) appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple Music adds Defected and Glitterbox DJ mixes and live sets

The latest external playlist curator getting some love from Apple Music is independent dance label Defected Records, including its Glitterbox brand.
It’s providing Apple Music with some exclusive DJ mixes and live sets, kicking off with a selection including sets from Ibiza in 2019 (Roger Sanchez, Gorgon City, Sam Divine) and from the recent Glitterbox Virtual Festival (Idris Elba, Jellybean Benitez, Boys Noize etc).
Apple Music said this would be “the start of a regular schedule of new mixes & sets from the label” on its service.
The DJ sets may be exclusive to Apple, but Defected isn’t ignoring other platforms with its playlists: Fresh House Friday, Defected Selectors, Defected Classics and others are still on Spotify for example.
The post Apple Music adds Defected and Glitterbox DJ mixes and live sets appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

300k listeners voted on the songs for Tencent Music’s new compilation

In China, Tencent Music has plenty of history as a direct distribution channel for independent musicians, which is now concentrated in its Tencent Musician arm.
Its latest project is interesting. ‘Root Music’ is a collection of Chinese folk tracks in local dialects, with its lineup chosen by listeners rather than by Tencent Music’s own curators. Nearly 3k tracks were submitted as part of a contest, with nearly 350,000 fans then voting to decide which 12 songs would make it onto the compilation.
The album is available on TME’s three streaming services in China, with documentaries on each of the 12 artists also released.
The post 300k listeners voted on the songs for Tencent Music’s new compilation appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Judge blocks Trump administration’s TikTok app stores ban

Wake up, take a look at the US app stores (if you can) and see that… TikTok remains available to download. That’s because a US District Court judge issued a preliminary injunction last night to prevent the Trump administration’s proposed ban on new downloads of the app from taking effect.
The judge’s written explanation of the ruling may be released later today. During a hearing yesterday, TikTok’s attorneys focused on the ongoing negotiations with Oracle and Walmart to reach a deal that would render the ban unnecessary.
“How does it make sense to impose this app store ban tonight when there are negotiations under way that might make it unnecessary?” said lawyer John E. Hall during that hearing, according to Reuters.
The post Judge blocks Trump administration’s TikTok app stores ban appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The evolution of podcasts: ‘I hope that the industry diversifies’

“I remember looking for podcasts hosted by Black people. I think I found four in the UK!”
Renay Richardson is the CEO of podcast production company Broccoli Content, and also a prime mover behind the ‘Equality in Audio Pact’, an initiative encouraging the industry to tackle “the lack of opportunities for minority talent both in front and behind the mic”.
Starting Broccoli Content, and then launching the pact, was a reaction to that dearth of British shows hosted by Black people, when she was working on an NHS campaign during Black History Month to drive blood donations.
Have things improved? “There are so many independent POC [people of colour] fronted podcasts, but there was still a lack of opportunity among the professionals,” said Richardson, during a session on the evolution of podcasts at last week’s Sandbox Summit Global conference.
The post The evolution of podcasts: ‘I hope that the industry diversifies’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Music marketing tips: the pros share their best advice at Sandbox Summit

The final day of Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference had a practical focus on music marketing, with two panels of experts offering their advice.
First was a ‘tips from the top’ session picking the brains of Sarah Ismail (regional marketing director, Greater China and South East Asia, Warner Music Group), Negla Abdela (head of digital marketing, Ministry of Sound Recordings) and Jordan Moran (director, digital marketing, Primary Wave).
The post Music marketing tips: the pros share their best advice at Sandbox Summit appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Making the most of Twitch: tips for artists from its music team

Amazon’s livestreaming video platform Twitch was already looking to do more with music before Covid-19 struck, but the pandemic has fuelled a moment where lots of musicians are also suddenly keen to do more with Twitch – and livestreaming more generally.
At Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference this week, Twitch’s VP of music Tracy Patrick Chan and music partnerships manager Allyson Toy joined Music Ally’s Joe Sparrow to talk through what the platform can offer artists and rightsholders.
Chan outlined Twitch’s two key strengths: first, for building communities where creators (artists now included) can “interact on a regular basis with your fans”, and second, for that community to “financially support you: we have lots of singers, songwriters, producers who are making five or six figures a year on Twitch”.
The post Making the most of Twitch: tips for artists from its music team appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

M to the B, Bella Poarch, and a tale of TikTok virality

“If you don’t know me I’m M to the B / Coming in hard, you better watch it Sophie…”
If those lyrics mean nothing to you, then you clearly aren’t an aficionado of the mid-2010s Blackpool grime scene, nor do you have a tweenage TikTok fan in your household.
The lyrics are from a 2016 diss track by young British rapper Millie B, who was part of that scene (famously documented by Noisey).
The post M to the B, Bella Poarch, and a tale of TikTok virality appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Japanese artist Reol made $130k from a YouTube livestream

Can you make money from livestreamed music performances on YouTube? Japanese artist Reol certainly did: to the tune of $130k.
YouTube’s director of Black music and culture Tuma Basa revealed the figure in his appearance at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference yesterday alongside colleague T. Jay Fowler, director of product management.
Reol’s livestream had 181k views while it was airing, with fans buying ‘super chats’ (highlighted messages that stay pinned at the top of a video’s chat window) and ‘super stickers’ (animated stickers to help their chats stand out) to show their support.
The post Japanese artist Reol made $130k from a YouTube livestream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple has acquired podcast curation startup Scout·fm

Back in June 2018, Music Ally wrote about a startup called Scout·fm, which was launching a ‘voice-first podcast curation service’.
It had an Alexa skill that would ask people questions to understand their interests, then provide a radio-style stream of podcast episodes.
The next we heard of it was early this year, when Scout·fm joined a startup camp for voice-focused firms run by Betaworks.
The post Apple has acquired podcast curation startup Scout·fm appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Blackpink trail new album with Spotify and PubG Mobile

One of the K-Pop groups that have been smashing down global barriers recently is Blackpink, who you can expect to see splashed over many digital platforms in the coming week ahead of their new album’s release on 2 October.
Two examples today: Blackpink have launched an ‘enhanced album’ playlist on Spotify, complete with some videos of Jisoo, Jennie, Rosé and Lisa talking about their musical inspirations.
Obviously most of the album tracks aren’t out yet, so for now it’s mainly a playlist of the band’s picks: The Strokes, Nirvana, Catfish and the Bottlemen (!) included.
The post Blackpink trail new album with Spotify and PubG Mobile appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BTS Universe Story mobile game launches for Android and iOS

The new mobile game for K-Pop stars BTS has gone live. Netmarble’s BTS Universe Story was made available for Android and for iOS overnight, and is the band’s second foray into mobile gaming following last year’s BTS World.
As we recently reported, BTS Universe Story is about tapping the BTS Army’s creativity: creating their own animated stories set in the BTS Universe, featuring the band members.
Music Ally has been testing the app out this week ahead of its release, and it’s impressive: with an easy mode to help fans create stories, and a more complex mode for those who really want to get stuck in.
The post BTS Universe Story mobile game launches for Android and iOS appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Jennifer Lopez and Maluma held a YouTube premiere ‘afterparty’

Jennifer Lopez and Maluma have just released a pair of singles together: ‘Pa Ti’ and ‘Lonely’, and like a growing number of artists, they unveiled the music videos in a YouTube premiere, yesterday.
However, they also held an afterparty (a #PaTiAfterParty in hashtag form) which saw J-Lo and Maluma chatting about the collaborations, promoting their upcoming movie ‘Marry Me’, and encouraging fans to register to vote in the US.
This is something we’re going to see more of on YouTube: video premieres with an additional Q&A / chat element, whether it’s a livestream leading up to the premiere, or this kind of follow-on.
The post Jennifer Lopez and Maluma held a YouTube premiere ‘afterparty’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Ava Max is holding an album launch party inside Roblox

Gaming platform Roblox has more than 150 million monthly active users, and its head of music recently told Music Ally how keen the company is to work with artists and labels.
Now we’ve got one of the first examples: pop artist Ava Max is holding an album launch party in Roblox later today (25 September).
Atlantic Records and Artist Partner Group worked with a Roblox developer to create the ‘Ava Max Heaven & Hell Launch Party’ space, based on the album’s ‘supernatural space’ theme.
The post Ava Max is holding an album launch party inside Roblox appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

SignalFire report explores the growing ‘creator economy’

Is everyone an influencer in 2020? Well, not everyone, but according to investment firm SignalFire “more than 50 million people around the world consider themselves creators, despite the creator economy only being born a decade ago”. That’s the introduction for its new report, ‘Creator Economy Market Map‘, which catalogues more than 100 of the startups […]
The post SignalFire report explores the growing ‘creator economy’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

AI music startup Endel raises $5m Series A funding round

Endel has been one of the higher-profile startups exploring AI-generated music: in its case, focusing on its application as music to help people concentrate, relax and sleep. Now it has raised a Series A funding round of $5m to further its ambitions. The round was led by True Ventures and its partner Kevin Rose – […]
The post AI music startup Endel raises $5m Series A funding round appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Musician bodies team up to attack Epidemic Sound again

Production library Epidemic Sound is taking flak from musician bodies again, in what’s becoming a regular, one-sided war of words. European bodies Aepo-Artis, Ecsa and FIM, who represent composers, songwriters and performers, are lambasting the company over issues including 100% buyout contracts; replacing composers’ names with the company name in TV credits; and its recent […]
The post Musician bodies team up to attack Epidemic Sound again appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amuse financials reveal $9.5m revenues but $10.9m net loss

Swedish distribution startup Amuse is one of the more disruptive music/tech companies to have emerged in recent years, but is it a profitable one? Not yet. The company’s financial results for 2019 show that it generated revenues of SEK 85.1m (around $9.5m), which was impressive 209% growth year-on-year. However, the company’s net losses nearly doubled […]
The post Amuse financials reveal $9.5m revenues but $10.9m net loss appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Kanye West on contracts campaign: ‘I will help set precedents’

The music industry may still be picking its way through Kanye West’s self-leaked Universal Music Group deals, but West is making it clear that his campaign around artist contracts is more than just a moment on Twitter. “The desired effect will only be achieved when every artist owns their masters. I’m Team ‘Free Artists.’ I’m […]
The post Kanye West on contracts campaign: ‘I will help set precedents’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Streaming panel calls for more innovation from DSPs and labels

Are the big music streaming services too similar to one another? And if so, how can they break out of that box to innovate and differentiate themselves?
A panel at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference yesterday, had some ideas. Angel Gambino, partner at venture development firm Prehype and until recently chief commercial officer at Napster, set the ball rolling.
“One of the things that I’m struck by from a consumer standpoint is that there isn’t so much differentiation between the streaming services from an experiential standpoint,” she said.
“One of the things that needs to happen is looking at not just expanding into other genres of programming – i.e. podcasts – but what can the DSPs and the wider ecosystem of startups, of people who are working in music/tech on a daily basis, what can we do from a product and service and experiential standpoint to help take playlisting and discovery to the next stage?”
The post Streaming panel calls for more innovation from DSPs and labels appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Lorem, Pollen and Oyster: how Spotify’s genreless playlists are ‘driven by culture’

Playlists have become a hugely important part of the music streaming world, and many of them have a tightly-curated theme, be it a musical genre or a specific mood or activity.
Not all, though. Some of Spotify’s most interesting emerging playlists – Lorem, Pollen and Oyster for example – are designed to be ‘genreless’. Today at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference, we heard more about how (and why) those playlists work.
Spotify’s Lizzy Szabo (editor, North America), Sophia Olofsson (studio project manager, Nordics) and Iman Hazheer (senior editor, Nordics) were the explainers, in a session moderated by CD Baby’s market development coordinator for Europe and the UK, Henriette Heimdal.
The post Lorem, Pollen and Oyster: how Spotify’s genreless playlists are ‘driven by culture’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Epic Games invests in Roblox-like startup Manticore Games

We’ve been writing about popular children’s gaming platform Roblox for some time, including its desire to work with the music industry. It’s not the only platform of its type.
Manticore Games is the company behind Core, which is a similar “digital playground and community designed to unleash imagination and explore new play experiences”.
It came onto our radar this week with a $15m funding round led by Epic Games – and according to Forbes “the first outside investment that the Fortnite maker has made”.
The post Epic Games invests in Roblox-like startup Manticore Games appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube deploys AI to tighten up age restrictions on videos

YouTube is keen to ensure that underage viewers aren’t watching videos that are inappropriate. It’s announced plans to “build on our approach of using machine learning to detect content for review, by developing and adapting our technology to help us automatically apply age-restrictions”.
In other words, YouTube’s AI will be rating videos, although uploaders will be able to appeal if they feel the age rating is wrong.
YouTube also says that “viewers attempting to access age-restricted videos on most third-party websites will be redirected to YouTube where they must sign-in and be over 18 to view it” as part of its changes.
This is very relevant for the music industry, as YouTube’s guidelines on which videos will be age-restricted to over-18s include content that “invites sexual activity, such as provocative dancing or fondling” as well as videos with “heavy profanity in the title, thumbnail or associated metadata”.
The post YouTube deploys AI to tighten up age restrictions on videos appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TuneCore encourages artists to upload music to TikTok for free

The latest distributor to announce a partnership with TikTok is TuneCore, which hopes its latest promotion will tempt more artists into putting their music on the social app.
Between 22 and 29 September, TuneCore artists can upload a track to TikTok for free. This follows the deal signed with TikTok by TuneCore’s parent company Believe in July, although TuneCore added TikTok as a distribution option before that, in October 2019.
Since then, around 320,000 of its artists have distributed more than 333k releases to TikTok, according to TuneCore. Tracks uploaded during the promotion will stay on TikTok for a year, with an option to keep them up after that.
The post TuneCore encourages artists to upload music to TikTok for free appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Featured Artists Coalition appoints new artist ambassadors

UK artist trade body the Featured Artists Coalition (FAC) has announced its latest crop of artist ambassadors.
There are 19 of them, including some famous names: Bob Geldof, Aluna, Ghostpoet, Roni Size, Shaun Ryder, Roger Sanchez and Maxi Jazz out of Faithless. However, there are also some newer artists in the group: Dream Wife, Bishi, Porridge Radio and The Lady Blacktronika for example.
“It is these artists that create the records, pack the venues and sell out the festivals that make our whole industry a success story.  We welcome them at a time when the music industry and in particular, music creators, are facing an existential challenge from the impact of the global pandemic,” said FAC boss David Martin.
The post Featured Artists Coalition appoints new artist ambassadors appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Echelon’s Peloton-like ‘Prime Bike’ is not an Amazon product

Some headlines overnight suggested that Amazon was launching its own exercise bike to take on Peloton, in partnership with a company called Echelon.
You can see the press release that sparked those reports here: claiming that “Echelon’s new EX-Prime Smart Connect Bike – also known as the Prime Bike –officially hit the online market as Amazon’s first-ever connected fitness product”.
Later, it said that the $499 bike was “developed in collaboration with Amazon”. Like Peloton, the bike was accompanied by a digital service offering live and on-demand workout classes, including music.
The post Echelon’s Peloton-like ‘Prime Bike’ is not an Amazon product appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Shesaid·so launches Patreon to ‘stay alive and independent’

We’ve written regularly about the activities of Shesaid·so, the community for women and gender minorities in the music industry, which was founded nearly six years ago.
Now it has announced plans to launch a new community ‘hub’ for its members, and also a Patreon campaign to raise ongoing funding to support that – including from non-members.
“With your continued support, we will be able to stay alive and independent after a 60% loss in our income due to the pandemic,” wrote founder Andreea Magdalina in a blog post.
There are several tiers for the Patreon, including a $5-a-month ‘Alice’ membership for women and gender minorities at all levels of the music industry, and a $10-a-month ‘Nina’ membership for more senior members of the industry.
The post Shesaid·so launches Patreon to ‘stay alive and independent’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify launches ‘Your Daily Drive’ playlist in the UK

After a few weeks of badgering people to go back to work in company offices, the British government yesterday executed its latest u-turn of the Covid-19 crisis, telling them to work from home if they could again.
The timing was certainly unfortunate for Spotify, which had chosen yesterday as the day to launch its ‘Your Daily Drive’ playlist in the UK, aimed squarely at people’s morning commutes.
Well, the commutes may be cancelled again for many, but the playlist’s blend of podcast news snippets and personalised music recommendations may still appeal.
The post Spotify launches ‘Your Daily Drive’ playlist in the UK appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

China blast for TikTok deal as ‘dirty and underhanded trick’

President Trump may have tentatively approved TikTok’s deal to avoid a ban in the US, but what will the Chinese government make of it?
Judging by state-media outlet China Daily’s blistering editorial column this morning – title: ‘No disguising proposed TikTok deal is a dirty and underhanded trick’ – the omens aren’t good.
“What the United States has done to TikTok is almost the same as a gangster forcing an unreasonable and unfair business deal on a legitimate company,” is how it opens.
The post China blast for TikTok deal as ‘dirty and underhanded trick’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Bandcamp’s monthly sales are up by 122% year-on-year

There’s a thriving trade in ‘Bandcamp as the anti-Spotify’ articles this year: the latest, from the Los Angeles Times, puts the ‘anti-Spotify’ phrase right in the headline. However, lower down there are some interesting figures showing Bandcamp’s current momentum.
In the past year, fans have bought 5m digital albums, 2m tracks, 1m vinyl albums, 600k CDs, 300k cassettes and 250k t-shirts from Bandcamp for example – yes, there’s clearly some rounding of figures going on there – with more than 40% of buyers paying more than the asking price of items.
CEO Ethan Diamond told the newspaper that in the last 30 days, sales are up by 122% year-on-year, suggesting organic growth, not just a spike from the platform’s recently-introduced ‘Bandcamp Friday’ sales.
The post Bandcamp’s monthly sales are up by 122% year-on-year appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Denzyl Feigelson and Troy Carter talk artists, labels and music industry evolution

Q&A and Platoon are two of the most interesting new artist-focused music companies to emerge in recent years, and we had their founders Troy Carter and Denzyl Feigelson in conversation at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global conference today, interviewed by Music Ally CEO Paul Brindley.
From working with top artists at early stages of their careers (a 14 year-old Billie Eilish for Platoon; Lady Gaga for Carter in his initial management days) to experience within the biggest music-tech companies (Platoon is now owned by Apple; Carter headed up Spotify’s creator services division) and a firm focus on artist development in the digital era, they had plenty of knowledge to impart.
In fact, their first connection was when Feigelson was involved in Apple’s iTunes Festival in London and Carter was managing Lady Gaga, and they bonded over what Carter described as “that appreciation for artists and an appreciation for ideas and creativity and quality”.
The post Denzyl Feigelson and Troy Carter talk artists, labels and music industry evolution appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

K Camp and Genius talk artist entrepreneurs: ‘Ain’t nobody gonna babysit you!’

If you don’t know Atlanta artist K Camp, it’s highly likely you know his track ‘Lottery (Renegade)’, or at least the 15-second clip of it that blew up on TikTok early in 2020, in turn sending the track zooming back up the charts.
There’s far more to K Camp than one viral track, however. With DJ, producer and business partner Genius he’s been steadily building his career both as an artist, and as an entrepreneur.
The pair co-founded Rare Sound, a creative hub that encompasses a label, recording studio, distribution and other musical activities. And today, they talked about some of the principles that have helped them to build and grow, at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference.
As an artist, K Camp has worked within the major label system – with Interscope – and also independently. It’s been a journey of continual enlightenment.
The post K Camp and Genius talk artist entrepreneurs: ‘Ain’t nobody gonna babysit you!’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Facebook warns that it could pull out of Europe altogether

American TikTokers have been grappling with the existential (in app terms) question of what they’d do if the app was banned. Now imagine the rumpus if Facebook and Instagram were suddenly unavailable across the whole of Europe.
It could happen.
Well, Facebook is claiming that it could happen, as part of its fightback against a recent decision by the Irish Data Protection Commission – the regulator that oversees Facebook in Europe – that the social network must stop sending user data to the US.
The post Facebook warns that it could pull out of Europe altogether appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amanda Palmer launches The Art of Asking Everything podcast

Artist Amanda Palmer has always been eager to explore new ways of connecting with her fans. The latest example is a weekly podcast, The Art of Asking Everything.
It launches on 29 September with 10 episodes already lined up, and like some of the most popular artist podcasts (Jessie Ware, George Ezra etc) it will see Palmer interviewing a range of guests. Elizabeth Lesser, Lenny Henry, Laura Jane Grace, Eli Pariser and KT Tunstall are among those appearing in the first run.
Palmer is funding the podcast’s production through crowdfunding platform Patreon, where she has nearly 15,000 patrons now.
The post Amanda Palmer launches The Art of Asking Everything podcast appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Fortnite is the next frontier for K-Pop stars BTS

BTS are no strangers to the gaming world, having starred in their first mobile game BTS World last year, with a follow-up (BTS Universe Story) about to launch. Now the K-Pop stars are heading to one of the biggest, buzziest games of all: Fortnite.
This Friday (25 September) they’ll be premiering a new “choreography version” music video for their recent single ‘Dynamite’ within the Party Royale mode of Epic Games’ title.
Fans will also be able to buy a pair of BTS-themed emotes (dance moves for their characters) in Fortnite’s in-game store from 23 September in preparation, with those emotes usable in all of the game’s other modes too.
The post Fortnite is the next frontier for K-Pop stars BTS appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

AiR Show app wants to bring artists to fans’ homes using AR

Artists turning up in your living room to play a concert is awkward at the best of times – what if you run out of teabags or biscuits? – but impossible under current social distancing rules in many parts of the world.
Cue a startup that wants to do it virtually. A company called Trick 3D has launched an app called ‘AiR Show’ that will bring musicians to fans’ homes using augmented reality technology.
It’s available for Android and for iOS, and already has a partnership for an upcoming series of livestreaming concerts being launched in Atlanta by another company, Axis Reply, and rapper Offset.
The idea: fans will buy tickets to watch the livestreams, and will then be able to use the AiR Show app to “pose and hang with the artists in augmented reality”.
The post AiR Show app wants to bring artists to fans’ homes using AR appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

UK’s Musicians’ Union delivers new warning over Covid-19

With the UK bracing itself for a ‘second spike’ of Covid-19 cases in the autumn and winter, things aren’t looking good for the return of physical live concerts. Now the Musicians’ Union has published the results of its latest survey, warning about the potential consequences.
“A third (34%) of musicians are considering abandoning the industry completely, due to financial hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic,” it claimed. “Nearly half (47%) of our members have already been forced to seek work outside of the industry, with seven in 10 (70%) unable to undertake more than a quarter of their usual work.”
88% of the MU’s members think the British government hasn’t done enough to support musicians during the pandemic.
The post UK’s Musicians’ Union delivers new warning over Covid-19 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Hi-res streaming service Qobuz raises €10m funding round

Qobuz is the hi-res music streaming service founded in France, which has expanded to 12 countries so far. Now it has a new funding round to fuel further growth.
The company has raised €10m ($11.7m) from existing investors Nabuboto (the holding company of CEO Denis Thébaud’s company The Thébaud Group) and Canadian telco and media corporation Quebecor Group.
Qobuz said that its revenues grew by more than 45% in its last financial year, and that it is “now pursuing a major development plan… setting up a new management team and launching a recruitment plan that is unprecedented in the company’s history”.
The post Hi-res streaming service Qobuz raises €10m funding round appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The future of streaming and music marketing post Covid-19

After an introductory session offering views on Covid-19’s music impact around the world, Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global conference turned its attention to what happens next.
The online event’s ‘Future of Streaming Post-Covid’ strand began with some views from Chaz Jenkins, chief commercial officer at Chartmetric.
“If we’re to use one word to describe what we’ve seen happen in the marketplace this year, it would probably be ‘volatile’,” he said, adding that a number of trends that had been happening slowly suddenly went into overdrive during the pandemic.
“Where we listen to music, when we listen to music, why we listen to music, and crucially what we listen to has changed fundamentally over the course of the year,” he said.
The post The future of streaming and music marketing post Covid-19 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Saving independent venues: ‘It is a challenge for the entire industry’

The whole music industry should be throwing its weight behind independent venues’ struggle to survive, according to Ana Rodriguez, co-chair of international managers body the IMMF.
Speaking at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference today, she called on fans and industry entities alike to support local venues.
“The most important thing about them is the cultural impact on local communities, and the role they have as foundations for talent, and a launchpad for acts that get to be known globally,” she said.
“Their future remains uncertain, and this really makes me nervous, because for a band to develop their audience, and to get experience… with their show, they need to be on stage during the early days. There is no shortcut for this part of the process.”
The post Saving independent venues: ‘It is a challenge for the entire industry’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Covid-19 could encourage global thinking for Japan’s music industry

The Covid-19 pandemic may be encouraging the Japanese music industry to look outwards more, according to Tatsuya Nomura, president of the Federation of Music Producers Japan (FMPJ).
Speaking at Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference today, he described how the pandemic came at a sensitive moment in Japan’s transition from a recorded music market dominated by sales, to one driven by streaming.
“The timing was very bad, however with this situation, the number of Japanese music industry people who take a process of trial and error to tackle the problem is increasing,” he said.
The post Covid-19 could encourage global thinking for Japan’s music industry appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Covid-19’s music impact: views from Latin America, China and Nigeria

Music Ally’s Sandbox Summit Global online conference began today with some quickfire talks on how the Covid-19 pandemic has affected the music industry in Latin America, China and Nigeria.
Noemí Planas, network development director at global independent body WIN began with a blunt assessment of the challenges in Latin America.
“In recent months we have often heard that music was one of the first sectors most affected by Covid, and will be one of the last to recover from it. This is especially true for Latin America,” she said.
Planas described a “ten-year setback” for economic growth in the region generally, with several territories still enmeshed in the longest quarantine/lockdown periods in the world.
The post Covid-19’s music impact: views from Latin America, China and Nigeria appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Logic blames UMG for not letting game-streamers use his music

Having officially retired from music earlier this year, before signing what was reportedly a seven-figure exclusive deal to stream on Twitch, artist Logic is a prominent figure at the intersection of music and livestreaming. A tweet on Friday is thus making a few waves.
“Too many of my gaming homies @Ninja included have wanted to play my music during stream and on YouTube but @UMG wont let me,” he wrote. “I want 2 give to this great community and allow them 2 use my music for free! This is beyond a dollar sign. I want the community to enjoy my music.”
And yes, it’s true that if Logic wanted a rights carve-out for game streamers he should have asked for it when signing his record deal – but by going public with his complaint now, it might encourage other artists to make such a request.
The post Logic blames UMG for not letting game-streamers use his music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG’s Arts Music signs YouTube kids brand Super Simple Songs

Warner Music Group’s Arts Music division has been steadily growing its catalogue of kids and family music, with partners including Sesame Workshop, Mattel and Build-a-Bear Workshop.
Its latest deal is with a popular YouTube children’s music brand, Super Simple Songs. Well, with its parent company Skyship Entertainment anyway, which will be making the Super Simple Songs catalogue available through Arts Music, with Warner Chappell handling the publishing rights.
The Super Simple Songs YouTube channel has 24.6 million subscribers and 22.8bn lifetime views. In the most recent weekly chart published by online-video industry site Tubefilter, Super Simple Songs was the 36th biggest channel on YouTube with 133.4m weekly views.
The post WMG’s Arts Music signs YouTube kids brand Super Simple Songs appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Kanye West offers guidelines for recording and publishing deals

Fresh (well, maybe that’s not the best word) from expressing his views on the music industry by tweeting a video of a Grammy award being urinated on, Kanye West offered some more constructive suggestions for how he’d like to see the industry change.
In a series of tweets yesterday, West outlined some “new recording and publishing deal guidelines”, having already tweeted out a selection of his own contracts with UMG last week.
West wants artists to own the copyright for their recordings and songs, and lease them to the label and publisher “for a limited term. 1 year deals”, with those “service provider” partners taking a 20% cut of the income.
The post Kanye West offers guidelines for recording and publishing deals appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Amazon Music gets Latin music hub and exclusive Neil Young EP

Amazon Music is the latest streaming service to make a concerted push around music from Latin America, with its new ‘Amazon Music Lat!n’ hub. It will offer a mix of Latin playlists, original/exclusive tracks, interview and mini-documentary videos with artists, and podcasts.
There’s also a program called ‘Rompe’ to promote emerging artists in the US, Latin America and Spain; and a content brand called ‘Raices’ which will spotlight established artists – starting with Marc Anthony.
Amazon has also rebranded its ‘Fuego Latino’ playlist as ‘Platino’ for a new global push, with separate playlist brands for new tracks (‘Hoy’), classics (‘Clasicos’ and hits (er, ‘Hits’).
The post Amazon Music gets Latin music hub and exclusive Neil Young EP appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok US ban postponed as Trump approves Oracle/Walmart deal

It’s been another topsy-turvy weekend in the US for TikTok. On Friday, the Department of Commerce announced that as of 20 September (Sunday) US app stores would be banned from making the app available to download, or for it to be updated for existing users.
Yet on Saturday, the department announced that “in the light of recent positive developments” the ban would be delayed a week until 27 September.
TikTok’s parent company ByteDance had filed a lawsuit on Friday against the Trump administration to try to block the ban, but as the ‘positive developments’ quote shows, that wasn’t the reason for the delay.
The post TikTok US ban postponed as Trump approves Oracle/Walmart deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Tonal is the latest connected fitness startup raising big money

From watching Peloton we know how interesting the connected fitness world is, with exercise devices for the home accompanied by live and on-demand workout videos and other digital features.
And we also know that music is often an important part of these services, often with licensing opportunities (and the odd argument) for rightsholders.
Anyway, it’s a sector worth keeping an eye on, not least because there’s a TON of venture-capital money flowing into it at the moment. Tonal is the latest example.
It’s a big wall-mounted screen that helps people to do their strength training, with built-in weights and a team of coaches on hand digitally. It’s also just raised a $110m funding round, not that long after a $45m round in April 2019.
The post Tonal is the latest connected fitness startup raising big money appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BPI inks three-year deal with hi-fi brand Bowers & Wilkins

British music industry body the BPI has a new partner: hi-fi maker Bowers & Wilkins, with a three-year deal for the latter to be involved in events and other campaigns.
B&W will be a key backer for the Hyundai Mercury Prize award, as well as the UK’s annual National Album Day, and also fortnightly online events called ‘The Record Club’.
“The Hyundai Mercury Prize, National Album Day and The Record Club all celebrate the album as the ultimate expression of an artist’s creativity, while Bowers & Wilkins enables them to tell their stories in the highest possible audio quality. We look forward to working together to bring those experiences to more music fans,” said BPI boss Geoff Taylor.
The post BPI inks three-year deal with hi-fi brand Bowers & Wilkins appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

U2’s YouTube channel relaunches with remastered music videos

U2 are the latest heritage artist to be getting their archive of music videos spiffed up for modern-day viewers online.
The band’s YouTube channel is relaunching as part of a collaboration between UMG’s Island Records, Interscope, UMe and UMC divisions and YouTube, with plans to spend the next year releasing remastered HD versions of U2’s music videos.
It’s kicking off today with the remastered video for ‘Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of’, and a YouTube Premiere at 12pm EST.
The post U2’s YouTube channel relaunches with remastered music videos appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Startup Synaesthetic seeks artists for ‘immersive music’

We spotted Synaesthetic in October last year, as a startup promising to develop “a new musical medium, that is more engaging and practical; through classical music theory, cutting-edge AI, and neuroscience”.
Nearly a year later, the company is showing off more of its plans for a product called ‘Lava’, and an artist-testing scheme called ‘Leap’ that goes along with it.
Lava is an acronym – Light for Audio-Visual Augmentation – a connected projector that streams content from a companion mobile app. The idea is to bring light-shows designed by artists to people’s homes as they listen to music.
Synaesthetic wants some artists to sign up to experiment with the technology – you can find the signup form here – as it works towards launch. 
The post Startup Synaesthetic seeks artists for ‘immersive music’ appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The latest player in the lo-fi hip-hop YouTube game is… Pepsi

Sure, you may like round-the-clock streams of lo-fi hip-hop on YouTube from channels like ChilledCow and Chillhop Music, but wouldn’t it be nice if their animated backgrounds were more branded?
And in fact, wouldn’t the music be nicer if it had a few more lyrics about fizzy drinks?
Fear not: Pepsi has you covered. It has launched its own ‘LoFi Radio: Beats To Sip To’ stream on YouTube, complete with original tracks including ‘Don’t Cry Over Spilt Pepsi’, ‘Pepsi Hits Different’ and ‘Wash It Down’.
So yes, it’s an endless stream of lo-fi hip-hop with lyrics about Pepsi. It’ll have to go some to compete against the giants of the genre on YouTube though.
The post The latest player in the lo-fi hip-hop YouTube game is… Pepsi appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Chartmetric launches new charts tracking music on Twitch

Twitch has been doing more with music and musicians, and analytics firm Chartmetric has been tracking that. The result is four new charts for music on Amazon’s live-video platform, presenting the top users by viewer hours both weekly and monthly, as well as the top users by followers both weekly and all-time.
Chartmetric says it’s tracking more than 5,000 artists, labels and ‘music-centric users’ on Twitch for the new rankings, pulling data “every few hours” to ensure the charts are up to date.
Among the findings so far: the most-followed music-related streamer on Twitch is Ibai Llanos (username: Ibai) who has nearly 2.4 million followers, ahead of US streamer LilyPichu, whose broadcasts mix gaming, drawing and piano-playing (hence her inclusion in the chart).
The post Chartmetric launches new charts tracking music on Twitch appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s ‘Radar’ picks were streamed 2bn times since March

Spotify is putting some oomph behind its ‘Radar’ initiative to promote emerging artists.
Originally launched in March, it now has a dedicated hub on Spotify, highlighting new releases from the artists as well as country-specific ‘Radar: First Listen’ playlists gathering some of their tracks.
The idea is that listeners don’t just discover the artists from their country, but also those from other parts of the world.
Spotify published some stats alongside this news: the 115 artists chosen for ‘Radar’ have been streamed more than 2bn times since the campaign’s launch in March by 112 million listeners, while collectively seeing their followers grow by 64% on average.
Read our recent interview with Beabadoobee, the latest artist chosen for ‘Radar’ in the UK.
The post Spotify’s ‘Radar’ picks were streamed 2bn times since March appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Rufus Wainwright launches catalogue-spanning livestream series

As the physical live-music lockdown stretches on, artists are finding new spins on livestreaming. The latest example is Rufus Wainwright, who’s kicking off his ‘Rufus-Retro-Wainwright-Spective!’ series of streams in October.
He’s going to perform each of his nine studio albums in chronological order, splitting each into two broadcasts (corresponding to ‘sides’ in a vinyl stylee). Actually, each album will have three broadcasts: the two sides and a separate Q&A session.
For example, part one of the performance of his debut album ‘Rufus Wainwright’ is on 9 October followed by a Q&A the same day, with part two of the performance following on 16 October.
The post Rufus Wainwright launches catalogue-spanning livestream series appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Facebook unveils Oculus Quest 2 VR headset and Tidal deal

Facebook’s Oculus Quest has been the most successful virtual reality headset yet, finally delivering on some of the early hype around what VR was capable of. Now it’s getting a sequel.
The Oculus Quest 2 costs $299 – $100 less than its predecessor – and is lighter and more powerful. It comes out in October, and gaming is at the forefront of the marketing messaging around it, including some exclusive titles and big-brand game ports.
Yesterday also saw a music announcement though: Facebook and Tidal are teaming up to stream a series of live concerts within the Oculus Venues app, which will also be streamed (not in VR) on Tidal.
The post Facebook unveils Oculus Quest 2 VR headset and Tidal deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify faces internal unrest over Joe Rogan’s old podcasts

Signing podcaster Joe Rogan to an exclusive deal certainly gave Spotify’s share price a boost, but it’s also created some internal headaches for the company.
Vice has a story about some recent internal meetings with staff at Spotify to discuss concerns about the back catalogue of The Joe Rogan Experience. And no, this time it’s not just about interviews with white nationalists.
According to Vice, an episode of the show interviewing an author who compared transitioning (gender-wise) to eating disorders and self-harm, with Rogan criticising trans activists, has caused unrest within Spotify.
The post Spotify faces internal unrest over Joe Rogan’s old podcasts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Composer Wojtek launches a carbon-emissions tracker website

Classical musician Wojtek released his album ‘Atmosphere’ in July, with fans made aware that it was produced and written ‘carbon neutrally’.
Now he’s launched a website explaining how, with infographics showing how carbon emissions were neutralised during the making of the album, as well as some of the other ways Wojtek is trying to balance his environmental impact.
The site’s launch came ahead of his talk at the Reeperbahn Festival in Germany today on the same topic.
The post Composer Wojtek launches a carbon-emissions tracker website appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Keith Urban premieres new album with Apple Music livestream

Apple has a history of music-related livestreams: for example the broadcasts of its London iTunes-branded concerts back in the day. There’s something interesting happening this year around livestreams and artists though.
We wrote about Apple Music’s virtual listening party for Victoria Monét in August, and now it’s repeating the trick for country star Keith Urban.
1,000 of his fans on Apple Music will be able to join a virtual listening party for Urban’s new ‘The Speed of Now Part 1’ album. The event today (17 September) is branded under the ‘New Music Daily’ playlist, with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe on hosting duties for the Q&A section.
The post Keith Urban premieres new album with Apple Music livestream appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Beatleap video-editing app includes Epidemic Sound music

Lightricks is the developer behind popular photo and video editing apps like Facetune and Videoleap, with more than 350m downloads so far. Now it’s launching a new creativity app with a music twist.
It’s called Beatleap, and it’s a partnership with production music firm Epidemic Sound. The app helps people to edit their videos to fit with more than 1,000 songs from the latter company’s catalogue.
“Utilising machine learning, the app determines the exact moment to slow down or speed up a user’s video to perfectly align with the beat of the music,” is how Lightricks put it.
The post Beatleap video-editing app includes Epidemic Sound music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple One bundles range from $14.95 to $29.95 a month

Apple’s ‘Time Flies’ press launch last night focused on Apple Watch and iPad but not iPhones, as predicted. However, there were also some big services announcements, including the long-anticipated Apple One bundle. Well, bundles: there are three of them, which will launch this autumn.
The ‘Individual’ tier includes Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade and 50GB of iCloud storage for $14.95 a month for one person. The ‘Family’ tier includes those three services and 200GB of iCloud storage for up to six family members for $19.95 a month. And the $29.95-a-month ‘Premier’ tier throws in Apple News+, Apple Fitness+ (we’ll get to that in a minute) and 2TB of iCloud storage, again for up to six people.
Unsurprisingly, Apple didn’t talk about any licensing wrangling required to create these bundles, including with music rightsholders. There’s plenty to think about: not just about what bundles mean for Apple Music royalties, but also the extent to which Apple One will nudge people towards family plans rather than individual subscriptions, and the impact that will have – which we’re not assuming will be negative – on Apple’s payouts to music rightsholders.
Midia Research offered another angle on this, suggesting that Apple One’s main appeal may be its ‘recession-proof’ nature. “While rights holders will not have been exactly enthusiastic about further royalty deflation (one for artists and songwriters to keep an eye out for when Apple One starts to gain share) they are also keenly aware of the need to ensure they keep as many music consumers on subscriptions as possible… Lower music rightsholder ARPU may be a price worth paying for shoring up the long term future of the music subscriber base.”
The post Apple One bundles range from $14.95 to $29.95 a month appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The Chainsmokers launch their own VC fund with $35m to invest

Concerts with disputed social-distancing safety measures didn’t work out so well for EDM duo The Chainsmokers. Perhaps venture capital will go better.
Alex Pall and Drew Taggart are launching an early-stage VC firm called Mantis, with backing from some Silicon Valley luminaries including Mark Cuban, Keith Rabois and Ron Conway.
TechCrunch reported that Mantis’s debut fund already has $35m, and there have already been investments in fitness app Fiton and mortgage-lending startup LoanSnap.
The post The Chainsmokers launch their own VC fund with $35m to invest appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Google enlists musicians as guides for virtual artworks

Lots of musicians have artistic interests well beyond music. Now Google is capitalising on that through its Google Arts & Culture initiative, enlisting some popular musicians to act as virtual tour guides for works of art.
It’s part of a series called ‘Art Zoom’, which is in its second season. J Balvin, Ellie Goulding, fka twigs, Grimes, Matty Healy from The 1975 and Chaeyoung from Twice are the musicians taking part, talking about artworks ranging from the European Renaissance to Korean landscapes.
It follows a first series that featured Jarvis Cocker, Feist, Maggie Rogers, Girl in Red and Lolo Zouaï. The tours are available for free on the Google Arts & Culture website, or via its mobile app.
The post Google enlists musicians as guides for virtual artworks appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Next BTS livestream comes with month-long virtual exhibition

K-Pop stars BTS are already one of the big success stories of lockdown livestreams: their ‘Bang Bang Con’ concert in June pulled in 756,000 paying customers.
Now they’re following it up with an even more ambitious event. ‘Map of the Soul ON:E’ will take place on the weekend of 10-11 October, with two broadcasts.
However, there’ll also be a month-long virtual exhibition opening on 13 October: a ‘3D virtual space’ according to Billboard, with merchandise including some that only official fan-club members can buy.
There’s a breakdown of the ticketing here: a one-day ticket costs 49k won ($41.75) alone or 61k won ($52) with virtual exhibition access. A two-day pass costs 90k won ($76.72) or 101k won ($86.09) with the exhibition. Fan-club members, as with ‘Bang Bang Con’, can get discounts.
The post Next BTS livestream comes with month-long virtual exhibition appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Twitch gets global deal with rap-battle league King of the Dot

Rap battles are a perfect match for livestreaming services: not only are they fun to watch and chat about, but musically speaking, they’re original content with far fewer copyright headaches for the platform.
Twitch knows all about those headaches, so its latest deal is interesting: with rap league King of the Dot. The exclusive agreement will see Twitch broadcasting battles every Sunday from KOTD’s ‘Grand Prix 2020’ tournament, with the league also running streams “focused on sports, gaming, music and culture with their artists and celebrity guests at the centre of it”.
KOTD co-owner Charles Morgan said that Twitch’s team “has assured us that they are committed to augmenting the culture for our audiences and artists alike. We had conversations with all the major services and the only team that made it feel right from the start was Twitch”.
The post Twitch gets global deal with rap-battle league King of the Dot appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TuneCore expands into Brazil and Russia with new offices

One of the music distribution trends of recent years has been aggressive geographic expansion, as distributors look to gain footholds in burgeoning new markets for music streaming – or those anticipated to grow rapidly in the years ahead.
TuneCore is one of those firms: it signed a deal with Tencent in China in October 2019, then opened an office in India in July this year. Now it’s launching in two more countries: Brazil and Russia, which it says are its ninth and tenth countries where it has boots on the ground.
The post TuneCore expands into Brazil and Russia with new offices appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify adds livestreams to its in-app concert listings

Spotify has been showing artists’ upcoming tour dates on their profiles for years, although data on how effective those listings are at selling tickets is scarce.
With the live industry still shut down in many parts of the world due to Covid-19, the streaming service is taking the logical step of adding listings for livestream performances too.
Artists can’t just add links willy-nilly though: Spotify is working with Songkick and Ticketmaster as its partners. “If you have an upcoming event you want Spotify to share with listeners, you should work through Songkick to get these events listed,” the company advised artists in a blog post. “A select number of Ticketmaster events will also be automatically listed on Spotify.”
The post Spotify adds livestreams to its in-app concert listings appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

The latest TikTok twist: plans for a standalone company?

The deadline is approaching for TikTok to be sold, shut down, or find an alternative solution that satisfies President Trump’s administration. After tech firm Oracle said it was part of a proposal submitted to the administration as a “trusted technology provider”, more details have emerged of the plan.
“ByteDance will place TikTok’s global business in a new US-headquartered company with Oracle investing as a minority shareholder,” reported the Financial Times. “As part of the proposal, Oracle will have a stake in the whole of TikTok and not just the US operations.”
The post The latest TikTok twist: plans for a standalone company? appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Beabadoobee talks Fake It Flowers, Spotify and lockdown creativity

“It’s so hard to stay positive in a time like this, but it’s about finding the little things. Once this is all over, there’s going to be the Summer of Love, and festivals, and touch. I can’t wait!”
Beatrice Kristi Laus – aka Beabadoobee – is looking for the silver linings in the Covid-19 pandemic, although she’s not dodging the fact that it’s a “complete shitshow”.
Another silver lining: lockdown has given her the time and space to fully concentrate on the finishing touches for her debut album ‘Fake It Flowers’, which comes out in October. “I’ve been given so much time to perfect the aesthetic,” she tells Music Ally.
Part of that aesthetic will be a print zine gathering together artwork, Polaroid photos and stories (plus a CD) that will be offered to her top listeners on Spotify, as part of a wider partnership with the streaming service.
The post Beabadoobee talks Fake It Flowers, Spotify and lockdown creativity appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s Anchor says it’s cracking down on copycat podcasts

There have been growing complaints about copycat podcasts uploaded through Spotify’s Anchor app. That means taking other people’s podcasts and re-uploading them – often with the same artwork – as your own, in the hope of snagging some advertising revenues before you get caught.
Now Anchor is cracking down on it. “This is definitely a new type of attack for Anchor,” co-founder Mike Mignano told The Verge.
“The good news is that so many creators are using Anchor, and that growth has been far more than I think we projected, which is great, but I think the downside in this case is that, with any rapidly growing platform, that has brought on some growing pains and we need to do a better job of anticipating things like this.”
The post Spotify’s Anchor says it’s cracking down on copycat podcasts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

JioSaavn’s Amplify offers direct distribution to emerging artists

Indian streaming service JioSaavn is launching a new scheme offering direct distribution to emerging, unsigned artists. It’s part of its existing ‘Artist Originals’ initiative, and is called ‘Amplify’.
It’ll encourage musicians to submit their demos to JioSaavn’s A&R team, based in Mumbai and New York. Artists chosen by the team will get upfront payments, marketing support and analytics tools, while their music will also be distributed beyond JioSaavn, globally, courtesy of the company’s partnership with The Orchard.
“This program intends to find and provide a platform for the next generation of independent artists,” said Artist Originals director of A&R Hiba Irshad in a statement.
The post JioSaavn’s Amplify offers direct distribution to emerging artists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Applications are open for the MMF’s next manager accelerator

The Music Managers Forum (MMF) is teaming up with YouTube Music once again for its Accelerator Programme for Music Managers in the UK.
Applications open today for the scheme’s 2021 cohort, which will be its third year. It’ll offer 12-month grants of up to £15k as well as training and other support.
The MMF has also updated its stats on the previous years. 45 managers have taken part in the scheme so far, representing more than 130 artists. Over its first 18 months, the MMF estimates that the scheme has helped those managers generate £2.3m for their clients.
The post Applications are open for the MMF’s next manager accelerator appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Voisey star Olivia Knight (aka poutyface) signs major deals

When we profiled social music app Voisey early this year, its co-founder Olly Barnes talked about its ambitions to discover new talent.
“We have users in remote parts of the world, who have never made a song before, and have low self-confidence, but Voisey allows them to make the step to songwriting,” as he put it, about an app that helps singers to find music loops created by producers, to sing over.
Now one of the first people to go viral on Voisey during its 2019 beta test has signed a pair of major deals. Olivia Knight (aka ‘poutyface’) has a label deal with Island Records and a publishing deal with Warner/Chappell, having also worked with Apple’s artist development subsidiary Platoon.
The post Voisey star Olivia Knight (aka poutyface) signs major deals appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

WMG’s ADA Worldwide follows LatAm expansion with Asia launch

Warner Music Group’s distribution arm ADA Worldwide is on an expansion drive. In July, it launched ADA Latin to oversee Latin America and Latin music in the US as well as Spain and Portugal. Now it’s turning its attention to Asia.
ADA Asia will be headquartered in Singapore, with a remit to sign up artists and independent labels from China, South Korea and south east Asia. Chee Meng Tan, who was Spotify’s director of label relations for the APAC region until December 2019, will head the new division.
“From K-Pop to Asian Hip-Hop, our region is a hotbed of creative talent that’s increasingly finding an international audience and ADA is uniquely placed to partner with these creators to take them to the next level, while embracing their originality and creativity,” he said in a statement.
The post WMG’s ADA Worldwide follows LatAm expansion with Asia launch appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Gaming star Ninja returns to Twitch with exclusive deal

Twitch may be doing more with music, but gaming remains its bread-and-butter content. Now one of the platform’s first and biggest stars is returning to it.
Tyler ‘Ninja’ Blevins is well known to Music Ally readers: he broke livestreaming records when playing Fortnite with Drake; competed in pro-amateur tournaments of the same game with Marshmello; then worked with Capitol Records on a compilation album.
In August 2019, Blevins left Twitch after signing a lucrative exclusive deal with Microsoft’s new livestreaming service Mixer, but in June this year that was shut down, making him a free agent once again. And now he’s back with Twitch, in a new exclusive deal.
The post Gaming star Ninja returns to Twitch with exclusive deal appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Facebook and Xiaomi join Amazon’s Voice Interoperability Initiative

A year ago we reported on a new ‘Voice Interoperability Initiative’ from Amazon, which was created to ensure that different voice assistants could work on the same devices.
Spotify, Sonos, Microsoft, Baidu and Tencent were among the first companies to join Amazon in the initiative. Now it has announced some more: Dolby, Facebook, Garmin and Xiaomi, taking it to 77 member companies.
However, that list still doesn’t include Apple or Google, the two biggest rivals in the voice-assistant / smart speaker space for Amazon in the west.
The post Facebook and Xiaomi join Amazon’s Voice Interoperability Initiative appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Super Hi-Fi and Rotor Videos bulk up with new experts

It seems to be the time of year for startups to be beefing up their wise-old-heads quota with advisors and board members. The two latest examples are Super Hi-Fi and Rotor Videos.
US startup Super Hi-Fi (which we profiled last year: its tech helps streaming services with the gaps between songs, whether that’s making transitions smoother, or automatically inserting audio content, radio-style) has appointed Tristan Jehan as a ‘strategic advisor on matters of music science and technology’.
The post Super Hi-Fi and Rotor Videos bulk up with new experts appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Why the Covid-19 struggles of small venues are a big problem

During the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve been writing about campaigns on both sides of the Atlantic to save independent music venues.
These spaces may seem a world away from the big concert halls, arenas and stadiums of the live music industry, but Midia Research has published one of the better explanations of why they matter.
“Without this testing ground for emerging artists, an artist development gap is going to appear. One that could hold back the careers of the next generation of artists, affecting not just their live business but the entire spread of their careers – with clear implications for labels and publishers,” wrote Midia boss Mark Mulligan.
The post Why the Covid-19 struggles of small venues are a big problem appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

As Twitch Sings shuts down, Snapchat gets a karaoke game

Twitch recently announced that it was shutting down its karaoke game Twitch Sings, including removing all the archived broadcasts and clips using it. But where one karaoke game closes, another one pops up backed by a different digital platform.
That game is called SingHeads, and the platform is Snapchat, which is an official partner. Released initially for iPhone with Android to follow, the game gets people to log in to their Snapchat accounts, then sing along to a rotating selection of popular songs – recent hits like ‘Despacito’, ‘Shape of You’ and ‘Shotgun’ as well as golden tracks from ABBA, Queen and Robbie Williams.
The post As Twitch Sings shuts down, Snapchat gets a karaoke game appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Podcasts proving popular for classical streaming service Primephonic

Primephonic is one of the streaming services focusing on classical music, with a comprehensive collection of albums and playlists. However, neither of those are its most popular format with listeners. It’s podcasts.
The company has been producing its own shows blending interviews with classical music artists, composers and conductors with their music.
“These podcasts are our most popular content. They are more popular than playlists, and more popular than normal albums,” said Primephonic’s CEO Thomas Steffens, in an online panel session organised by his company this week.
Steffens suggested that it’s been a helpful way to connect the interviewees with their audiences, at a time when classical music concerts – like the rest of the live music industry – have been shut down in many countries due to Covid-19.
The post Podcasts proving popular for classical streaming service Primephonic appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

US recorded music revenues grew by 5.6% in first half of 2020

US music industry body the RIAA has published its annual mid-year stats for the recorded music market there. They show that revenues grew by 5.6% year-on-year to $5.7bn in the first half of 2020.
The story here, as in other countries, is that Covid-19 had a significant impact in the second quarter of this year, but not enough to push the recorded music market into decline.
That 5.6% growth is a notable deceleration – in the first half of 2019 the growth was 18% – but the RIAA is looking at the positives, including a 12% rise in streaming revenues.
The post US recorded music revenues grew by 5.6% in first half of 2020 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Charlamagne tha God launches Black Effect Podcast Network

Veteran radio host Charlamagne Tha God is launching a new podcast network, in partnership with radio/streaming firm iHeartMedia in the US. It’s called The Black Effect Podcast Network, and is promising to create shows in genres including social justice, pop culture, sports, mental health, news, comedy, focusing on Black listeners. It’ll launch its roster of 18 […]
The post Charlamagne tha God launches Black Effect Podcast Network appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

PlaylistSupply helps managers and artists research playlists

A new tool to help managers and artists research Spotify playlists appears to be picking up some steam. PlaylistSupply was launched by a manager, Noah Motion, as a way for his peers to search for Spotify playlists relevant to their artist’s genre (or other search keywords), see their public data, and find contacts – email addresses included – for […]
The post PlaylistSupply helps managers and artists research playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube Music rolls out more features for its playlists

As it prepares for a migration of users from Google Play Music, YouTube Music’s team have been talking about some of their recent improvements to playlists on the service. That includes assistive playlists, with YouTube suggesting songs to add to a playlist based on its title, the songs already in the playlist, and the user’s listening history. […]
The post YouTube Music rolls out more features for its playlists appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Hipgnosis buys independent publisher Big Deal Music

We know that Hipgnosis Songs Fund likes buying publishing catalogues, and sometimes recordings rights too. But now it’s also buying publishing companies. Well, one publishing company this morning: Big Deal Music, which owns rights in songs that have been recorded by Shawn Mendes, One Direction and Panic at the Disco among other artists. This isn’t […]
The post Hipgnosis buys independent publisher Big Deal Music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Global Citizen and Spotify enlist artists for US vote campaigns

With less than two months to go to the US presidential election, efforts to encourage people to vote are heating up. Musicians – and now even music streaming services – are playing a prominent role. Global Citizen, which was at the forefront of music-related Covid-19 relief efforts earlier this year, has turned its attention to the US […]
The post Global Citizen and Spotify enlist artists for US vote campaigns appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

BMI sets new revenue and distribution records despite Covid-19

We’re in a peculiar time right now, where despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on individual musicians’ incomes, we’re also seeing announcements by industry bodies, major music companies and collecting societies of positive (and even still record-breaking) figures for their businesses. The latest is US society BMI for its last financial year, which ended […]
The post BMI sets new revenue and distribution records despite Covid-19 appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Sony Music steps up its podcasting with nearly 40 new shows

Sony Music has been signalling its podcasting ambitions with a series of partnerships over the past year. Now it has revealed nearly 40 new shows resulting from those deals – and they’re all launching this year. The unveiling happened at the major label’s first IAB Podcast Upfront presentation, with shows in categories including true crime, politics, […]
The post Sony Music steps up its podcasting with nearly 40 new shows appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

1% of artists account for 90% of streams says Alpha Data

The question of how long the ‘long tail’ of streaming is – and also how miserable it might be – has long been a subject for debate in the music industry. US analytics firm Alpha Data has some new figures to contribute, but they may not make reassuring reading for musicians lower down that tail. Rolling […]
The post 1% of artists account for 90% of streams says Alpha Data appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apple and Deezer reveal their latest books and audiobooks expansion

Music and podcasts are increasingly intertwined on various streaming services, but books – and specifically audiobooks – may also be joining the party.
We recently reported on Spotify’s ambitions on that front, but Apple already has an ebooks store with audiobooks options. Now it’s announced its latest related partnership, with Oprah Winfrey and her famous ‘Book Club’.
Her latest selection, ‘Caste’ by Isabel Wilkerson, is now available on Apple Books in ebook and audiobook form, with plans for Winfrey to curate related articles on the Apple News app next month; to interview Wilkerson in her Apple T+ show; and for a ‘Caste’ discussion guide on Apple Books.
The post Apple and Deezer reveal their latest books and audiobooks expansion appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Indian short-video app MX TakaTak is doing 1bn+ daily views

We’ve been writing about the jockeying for position in the Indian short-video apps market in the wake of TikTok’s ban there. Now another of the contenders has been talking (to the Economic Times) about its growth.
MX TakaTak says it has more than 10 million daily active users and 45 million monthly active users, with its app generating more than 1bn video views a day. And this, only a month after the app launched.
That growth hasn’t come without challenges: MX TakaTak is one of the apps that has been sent copyright violation notices by Indian film-music company T-Series, as we reported yesterday.
The post Indian short-video app MX TakaTak is doing 1bn+ daily views appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Music livestreams are getting their own awards ceremony

A music industry trend isn’t a proper trend until it gets its own awards ceremony, right? If so, livestreams are graduating to the Big Trends league, because LiveXLive has announced plans for ‘The Lockdown Awards’ this October to “honour artists and entertainers who create content for fans amidst the pandemic”.
Categories include Best Virtual Festival; Best Show Shot with an iPhone; Best Use of Technology/Zoom; Favorite Remote Duet; and Biggest Star Who Got It Right. There’s also a sense of humour at work here, with The John Legend Award for Being Ubiquitous During a Pandemic.
The post Music livestreams are getting their own awards ceremony appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Spotify’s Dissect podcast returns with Childish Gambino season

The last time we wrote about Spotify’s album-deep-dives podcast Dissect was in April, when its sixth season launched with a focus on Beyoncé’s ‘Lemonade’ album. Now it’s season seven time, and Childish Gambino is the artist under the spotlight.
Specifically his 2013 concept album ‘Because the Internet’ – “a nobly expansive attempt at plumbing the catacombs of social media for meaning and exploring the gap between the performative avatars we present as our online selves and the offline realities of our lives” as the podcast’s blurb puts it.
The post Spotify’s Dissect podcast returns with Childish Gambino season appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Apex Rides hopes to take on Peloton, and it’s licensing music

Where there’s a startup that’s gone public in a big IPO, there’ll be fledgling rivals hoping to follow the same path and compete with it. Such is the case with fitness firm Peloton.
One of its latest rivals is called Apex Rides, with its own combination of a physical exercise bike, and digital workout classes available live or on-demand. The cost: £1,200 for the bike and a £30 monthly subscription for the accompanying service.
The interest from Music Ally’s perspective is that Apex Rides is already engaging in music licensing. It has signed a deal with B2B firm 7digital to use the latter’s “in-house licensing services to negotiate and finalise rights to millions of premium tracks”.
The post Apex Rides hopes to take on Peloton, and it’s licensing music appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

TikTok battles to remove a graphic video showing a death

The latest TikTok controversy doesn’t involve music, or even Donald Trump.
Instead, it’s about a video of a man shooting himself, which has been shared by a number of popular meme accounts on the app (that’s a link to a news article about this: we’re not going to link to any of the clips) even as TikTok’s moderation team swung into action to remove those videos.
The last 24 hours has showed the best and worst aspects of TikTok’s community: a number of popular TikTokers have posted videos warning their young fans about the video, including showing a thumbnail of the beginning so they know what to avoid, which is good.
The post TikTok battles to remove a graphic video showing a death appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

Warner Music Latina launches a mobile game for Kidd Keo

Kidd Keo is a Spanish hip-hop artist signed to Warner Music Latina, and now the label has launched an official mobile game for his new album ‘Back To Rockport’.
Released for iOS and Android, Back To Rockport – The Game is an endless-runner game in the same vein as app hits Temple Run and Subway Surfers.
Fans play as Kidd Keo, running through the fictional city of Rockport collecting coins and avoiding paparazzi photographers.
The post Warner Music Latina launches a mobile game for Kidd Keo appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

YouTube contest involves making a music video for Hans Zimmer

For any aspiring filmmaker, the chance to have their work soundtracked by composer Hans Zimmer would be a dream come true. Now it will come true for five people.
Zimmer has teamed up with Sony Music and YouTube for a contest challenging people to create original music videos for five of his compositions. A winner will be chosen for each, and will become its official music video.
The compositions are from some famous films too: Gladiator, Inception, The Dark Knight, The Da Vinci Code and The Lion King. No pressure then.
The post YouTube contest involves making a music video for Hans Zimmer appeared first on Music Ally.
Source: Music ally

8tracks is planning a relaunch with licensed music catalogue

8tracks was one of the early music streaming services, launching just before Spotify in August 2008. However, it shut down at the end of 2019 after struggling with its profitability.
Earlier this year, we reported on a comeback for 8tracks, after its assets were acquired by a company called BackBeat, Inc. Now its new CEO Jeffrey Treichel has been talking to tech site TheNextWeb about the plans for the service, which currently has one million active users.
It’s looking to license some music rights – currently it uses YouTube’s API globally – and launch in Canada, with ambitions to roll out to the UK, Germany, India and Lat