As we reported earlier this week, the NFL is asking artists to pay for the privilege of playing their widely watched Superbowl halftime show. Industry response has been tepid, accept from one band. UK rockers You Me At Six are offering $2 million to perform. Here's their open letter to the NFL:
While we used to hear a lot about incubators and now we tend to hear more about accelerators there are a variety of educational programs designed to prepare companies seeking investors to get in the game. Music Foundry is one of those eductional pre-accelerators that helps those interested in learning more about the music industry on their way to a minimum viable product.
The shift from print to the web as well as the shift to user-generated writing has affected both music and music tech writers though often in different ways. For awhile outlets for music writing were shrinking unless you started your own blog or site. But outlets for music tech writing have gradually grown with the rise of digital communication. Now Medium's bridging the gap a bit with the upcoming launch of a digital music mag, aka music blog, on its platform. One music and tech writer, Tyler Hayes, who's using platforms like Medium has recently been writing more for FastCoLabs giving music tech a stronger presence on Fast Company's platform.
The shift in revenue from sales to streaming continues with SoundExchange paying $161 million in the last quarter to artists and labels. It the largest Q2 payment to date and an 8% increase in payments from 2,500 digital radio services in Q2 2013 to Q2 2014. SoundExchange second quarter 2014 highlights:
Streaming music is a music lover’s dream. We now have access to the work of a wide range of artists, either for free (with ads) or for a small monthly fee. Popular artists are even making money on the model, with heavy rotation with services like Pandora, Beats, and Spotify. For smaller artists, however, the results aren’t always great.
For better or worse, a future where most music is available for streaming looks unavoidable. Recognizing this, independent record labels and their artists are finding ways to ride the wave on their own terms.
Some services improve as others degrade. Twitter is now officially sometimes adding tweets to your feed from people/brands you don't follow. This can include retweets of tweets that were favorited but not retweeted. Vine, which popularized the video equivalent of a tweet, is getting more complex in a good way with uploads from one's camera roll and editing. SlideShare, not usually discussed on Hypebot, may be a bit more relevant because they've gone free and added video. But all three fail in corporate communication.
Bob Moczydlowsky has built his career around helping artists grow an audience; first as SVP, Product & Marketing for D2F platform Topspin and now as Twitter's Head Of Music. His experience give his remarks at a recent TedEx event some weight; so we had them transcribed. He shares simple and straighforward advice that's worth paying attention to:
Internationally renowned visual artist Maya Hayuk has sued singer Sara Bareilles, Sony Music and Epic Records for copyright infringement after Bareilles used images and a video of Hayuk's artwork to promoter Bareilles album and tour. The artwork in question was a mural that Hayuk was commissioned to create for the Bowery Mural Wall, an outdoor exhibition space in lower Manhattan. The piece was on display from February until earlier this summer. A remarkably similar piece of art appears in photographs and a music video used to promote Bareilles “Little Black Dress Tour” on various forms of social media.
Youtube and Google will partner to launch new “Music Key” subscription based music streaming services. Youtube will launch Youtube Music Key and Google will re-brand their existing service to Google Play Music Key. Youtube’s service will be $9.99/month after a 1 month free trial and will consist of over 20 million high - quality tracks. Listeners will be able to stream ad-free, audio-only music and will have access to full artist discographies. They will also be able to access covers, concert footage, and remixes. This is something that most competitors cannot currently offer. The official launch date for the service has not been announced.
UPDATE:As of Friday morning, the PonoMusic Crowdfunder equity investment campaign has passed $6,267,700 or 157% of the $4,000,000 goal. The round will close on September 1.
Original Story: After a successful Kickstarter campaign for the PonoMusic Player, PonoMusic recently launched an equity crowdfunding campaign on Crowdfunder. While PonoMusic's rewards-based crowdfunding campaign raised over $6.22 million, it's starting to look like investors who want in on PonoMusic are going to help it go even further this time. As of early Monday morning, investment commitments stand at over $5.24 million.
SoundCloud is adding advertising to fund payments to artists and labels who agree to participate in a new Premier Partner program. The terms of the invite only program were not disclosed. A deal with major labels is expected to be announced soon, but today's announcement was about reassuring the hundreds of thousands of indie artists who use the platform, that they may be able to make money there.
Kudos to Pandora for releasing an Employee Diversity Report. Shame on them for what it revealed. Despite being located in racially diverse Oakland, CA, just 3% of its 1,300 or so employees are African-American/black and 4% are Hispanic. Overall 28% of the city's population is African-American and 25% is Hispanic.
Here are two stories about musicians doing well that could be described as social media success stories. But Ryn Weaver's claim that "Tinder got me a record deal" is a bit misleading. And, while it's conceivable that Shannon Hurley could make money via activities on social networks like Facebook and Twitter, YouTube enabled her success by being so much more than a social network. In fact, both tales are almost simply updated versions of old stories from a time before the web existed.
Ticketing startup Ticketfly today announced the acquisition of events app WillCall. Ticketfly has shown impressive growth for their ticketing service which features a lot of music events but isn't limited to music. WillCall was focused on a mobile app for music events with a difficult-to-scale combination of discovery, ticketing, merch and drink sales.
A new list of the top 25 most popular music clubs in the U.S. from Billboard shows Live Nation's House of Blues chain dominating the small venue market nationally. In the top ten, only IMP's 9:30 Club in Washington D.C. has a place among the House of Blues outlets featured on the list. This is perhaps unsurprising, as Live Nation's House of Blues organization boasts approximately 80 venues across the country.
Once upon a time, it was pretty uncommon to preview tracks before committing your cash to the whole shebang. Particularly in the heyday of CDs, your best bet was a store’s listening station, and it was typically limited to whatever discs were already loaded, and it always seemed to be occupied anyway. Preexisting knowledge of an artist was usually reliable but, without that, you were kind of shopping blindly – save for the album artwork.
A little over a year ago TuneWiki, which dispayed the lyrics to the music you were playing, announced it was shutting down. It then earned a year long reprieve via acquisition by Vert Capital. Now it's said to have gone offline without paying its bills. Apparently Vert Capital just stopped paying, aren't returning reporter contacts and seem to have dumped what was left of Tunewiki in the ditch. Ah, the romance of startup life!
Spotify’s first media artist in residence, interactive artist Kyle McDonald, has created Serendipity, an animated world map that shows when and where someone else is listening to the same song at the same time. In order to show up on Serendipity, two users must have started listening to the same song on Spotify within a tenth of a second of each other in different towns, cities, states, nations or hemispheres.
The International Entertainment Buyer's Association (IEBA) has released its list of 2014 Honors & Awards nominees. All awards will be presented at the Honors & Awards Ceremony on September 30, 2014 at 8pm in the CMA Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. The full list of nominees:
Pay to play - owners demanding that artist pay to play thier venue - is coming to Super Bowl. The National Football league is reportedly asking artists to pay to be selected to perform during the half-time show at Super Bowl XLIX. In a story first reported by the Wall Street Journal, the NFL has asked Coldplay, Rihanna and Katy Perry if they'd be willing to offer a percentage of their future tour earnings or “some other type of financial contribution” in exchange for the half-time slot.
Danish headphone and audio accessories creator AIAIAI has been working with important artists and indie labels on special editions of their TMA-1 headphones. Previous collabs include Young Guru and Fool's Gold. Earlier this year they released an edition with Stones Throw. In a new promotional effort, they're inviting rappers to rap over Stones Throw's first release, "My World Premiere", using your headphone mic. TMA-1's are not required.
Last week Maker Studio's last co-founding YouTube star officially left the Disney-acquisition. This week Lindsey Stirling joins the YouTube MCN declaring in a press release that she's "one step closer to becoming a Disney princess!" For a canned quote it sounds pretty much like something Lindsey Stirling, who's created her own lane in the entertainment industry, might say. Given her aesthetic direction, such an outcome does not seem that unlikely.
Do musicians really need to pay attention to Pinterest? The answer is, probably yes. Traffic on the site grew 58% in 2013, sneaking past Facebook (57%) and leaving Twitter (15%) in the virtual dust. 20% of U.S. women who use the Internet are active members. 70% all users have made a purchase influenced by content they found there. To help you succeed on Pinterest, here is an infographic guide on How To Double Your Pinterest Followers In Just 5 Minutes A Day.