Thursday, November 8, 2007

Radiohead's Web venture spooks Wall Street

C/Net News reports:

Radiohead's Web venture spooks Wall Street
Posted by Greg Sandoval

Wall Street is taking record labels to task for lackluster Web sales, spiraling CD revenue, and the defections of marquee acts such as Madonna and Radiohead.

Nine Inch Nails' Trent Reznor
(Credit: Rob Sheridan)

Two analysts downgraded Warner Music Group last week, leading to a sharp drop in the company's stock price. One of the analysts, Richard Greenfield of Pali Research, penned a gloomy report about why he thinks the sector is headed for even greater losses.

"No matter how many people the RIAA sues, no matter how many times music executives point to the growth of digital music, we believe an increasing majority of worldwide consumers simply view recorded music as free," Greenfield wrote.

Proof of this was provided last month by Radiohead fans. The British supergroup offered the digital version of In Rainbows, the band's latest album, for whatever fans wanted to pay. According to research firm ComScore, which conducted a study of the groundbreaking promotion, 62 percent of those who downloaded the album paid nothing.

Complete article

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Trent Reznor: Take my music, please

From C/Net News:

Trent Reznor: Take my music, please
Posted by Greg Sandoval

Rocker Trent Reznor doesn't pretend to know the answers to what ails the music industry.

But that hasn't stopped the iconoclastic front man for the band Nine Inch Nails from marching to the front lines--in lock step with British band Radiohead--in an assault on the traditional music business.

Reznor, who made news earlier this month when he left his record label, spoke Tuesday with CNET about the decision. He also bashed the music industry, detailed how he persuaded performer Saul Williams to give away his latest album for free, praised Radiohead for distributing music directly to fans via the Web, and indicated that instead of fighting the so-called free culture--people who share music online--he plans to embrace it.

Complete article

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Madonna Leaves Warner Brothers: Signs with Live Nation

From the Daily Swarm::

October 16, 2007
Madonna's Live Nation deal official: 'The paradigm in the music business has shifted and as an artist and a business woman, I have to move with that shift'

LOS ANGELES, Oct. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/—Live Nation’s President
and Chief Executive Officer, Michael Rapino officially confirmed today that
Madonna has entered into an unprecedented global partnership with Live
Nation and will become the founding artist in its Artist Nation division.

“The paradigm in the music business has shifted and as an artist and a
business woman, I have to move with that shift,” commented Madonna. “For
the first time in my career, the way that my music can reach my fans is
unlimited. I’ve never wanted to think in a limited way and with this new
partnership, the possibilities are endless. Who knows how my albums will be
distributed in the future? That’s what’s exciting about this deal—
everything is possible. Live Nation has offered me a true partnership and
after 25 years in the business, I feel that I deserve that.”
Complete article

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

"Kylie Minogue: going online" -

This in from p2pnet:

Kylie Minogue: going online

p2pnet news | Music:- While Warner Music, EMI, Vivendi Universal and Sony BMG bitch and whine endlessly about online music, saying the customer is always wrong, Radiohead says the exact opposite and is telling fans ‘Pay us what you think our music is worth!’.

And now Kylie Minogue says she’s releasing her new single online a week before it appears in stores.

She’ll, “join stars embracing the digital revolution that is killing CD salesm” says the Herald Sun.
Complete article

p2pnet article"Colie Brice's ReverbNation"


Colie Brice’s ReverbNation

p2pnet news | Music:- Earlier today I was checking for comment spam - Yup, some still slips through, damn it - when I noticed a Reader’s Write from Colie Brice.

It was posted under Good-bye Corporate Pop and apart from the content, it’s interesting because the item features Andre Gray’s The DEMO Report from back in 2004, and that’s when the story ran as well.

Among other things, “Instead of signing with a major label, aspiring musicians will opt for selling their music over the web and they do not necessarily need to go to a major player in order to do so,” says the report..........
Complete article.
Links to Sources of Independent Music


  • Association of Music Podcasting (AMP)

  • AzOz Music

  • Beat Port

  • "Non-RIAA" List


  • Creative Commons

  • Defective by Design's List of DRM-Free Music Sites


  • DJ Download

  • dmusic

  • Electronic Frontier Foundation List of "Artists Online"


  • Fading Ways Records

  • Fake Science

  • Fat Cat



  • GrooveShark


  • imeem

  • iRate Radio

  • Isabella Stewart Gardner Musuem


  • Janis


  • Lime Light Radio

  • "Links to ... Legal Music Downloads"

  • Live Music Archive

  • free downloads

  • MagnaTune

  • Matador Records

  • Merge Records

  • Mundaze


  • Nettwerk Download Store

  • Nine Inch Nails

  • November Star Entertainment

  • RadioHead

  • R.evolution I.n P.rogress


  • Slankard, Megan

  • Stompy



  • Vision Metal Records


  • Nine Inch Nails Totally Independent

    This notice posted on Nine Inch Nails's website:
    08 October 2007: Big News

    Hello everyone. I've waited a LONG time to be able to make the
    following announcement: as of right now Nine Inch Nails is a totally
    free agent, free of any recording contract with any label. I have
    been under recording contracts for 18 years and have watched the
    business radically mutate from one thing to something inherently very
    different and it gives me great pleasure to be able to finally have a
    direct relationship with the audience as I see fit and appropriate.
    Look for some announcements in the near future regarding 2008.
    Exciting times, indeed.

    Tuesday, October 9, 2007

    Amazon buys a piece of Amie Street

    Reported by Amie Street: Announces Series A Financing Led By
    NEW YORK, NY—August 6, 2007—, a fast-growing digital
    music store with a unique demand-based pricing system, announced today
    the completion of its Series A financing led by, Inc.
    (NASDAQ: AMZN). The amount of Amazon's investment and the terms are
    not disclosed.

    "Amie Street has a very smart and innovative team," said Jeff
    Blackburn, Senior Vice President for Business Development,
    "The idea of having customers directly influence the price of songs
    is an interesting and novel approach to selling digital music." is the first digital music store propelled by social
    networking, where members of the community drive the discovery,
    promotion and pricing of music. All songs on start at a
    price of zero cents. As more people download a song the price rises,
    capping at $0.98.

    For recommending their favorite songs to their friends, members are
    rewarded by receiving credit for the purchase of additional music on The more popular a song becomes after a member has
    recommended it, the more credit he or she receives to spend on music.

    The recommendation system brings the music discovery process and the
    dynamic of social networking full circle, giving members the incentive
    and the means to continually discover and share new music. is a music network where people's passion for music,
    and their desire to share it with one another, generates commerce that
    benefits the entire community.

    " grew from the idea that we needed to make buying music
    social and fun," said's co-founder and CEO Elliott
    Breece. "The Amie Street community took over from there, driving a
    shift toward a music marketplace where consumers decide what is
    popular and what music is worth. We're thrilled to have's
    support in empowering music consumers."

    Anyone can upload their music to, and all songs are
    downloadable in DRM-free mp3 format.

    In conjunction with the announcement of its Series A,
    is debuting releases from Audio Bee, Daptone Records, Nettwerk Music
    Group, United For Opportunity (UFO), Dualtone Music Group,
    RoyaltyShare and INgrooves. As always, all songs start free!

    About is an online music destination that is changing the way
    people discover and buy music. Founded in the Spring of 2006 by then
    Brown University seniors -- Josh Boltuch, Elliott Breece and Elias
    Roman -- is a site where the members of the community
    determine the price of songs, which start out free and rise in price
    the more they are purchased. The site also rewards its members with
    downloads when they recognize and recommend tracks that rise in price,
    giving users an incentive to find and recommend good music first,
    while giving artists the platform to promote and sell their music. Forward-Looking Statements
    This announcement contains forward-looking statements within the
    meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E
    of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Actual results may differ
    significantly from management's expectations. These forward-looking
    statements involve risks and uncertainties that include, among others,
    risks related to competition, management of growth, new products,
    services and technologies, potential fluctuations in operating
    results, international expansion, outcomes of legal proceedings and
    claims, fulfillment center optimization, seasonality, commercial
    agreements, acquisitions and strategic transactions, foreign exchange
    rates, system interruption, significant amount of indebtedness,
    inventory, government regulation and taxation, payments and fraud.
    More information about factors that potentially could affect's financial results is included in's filings
    with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual
    Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006, and all
    subsequent filings. launches mobile billing and music delivery platform

    This in from


    This summer marked the launch of, the revolutionary,
    patent-pending mobile billing and music delivery platform. Textango
    allows anyone, anywhere in the United States and 30 other countries to
    purchase music simply by sending a premium text message with their
    cell phone. The unique component to Textango is that the consumer is
    billed on their cell phone bill, allowing for impulse purchasing when
    prompted at concert venues, over the radio, via print advertisements,
    etc. The music purchased is then downloaded off of at any
    time by entering the mobile number. Some of the countries include
    United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Finland, Sweden, & South Africa.

    Textango is the first to market this mobile billing process. While
    Textango faces indirect competition from current mobile media delivery
    services as well as traditional legal downloading services they offer
    significantly better payouts to musicians directly-roughly 50-54
    percent of the retail price of an album or song-keeping only 4 percent
    of retail with the company itself.

    "We are very excited to empower our labels, artists, and clients with
    a mobile billing option for impulse purchasing. We have artists
    selling through Textango that have seen a 1000% growth in their sales
    because of Textango's convenience." Says Thomas Scriven, Co-Founder of "The biggest music buying demographic in the world does
    not have credit cards. They can't buy your digital music or digital
    products. is the solution. We believe that this is the
    beginning of a solution for the revival of the music business!"

    Textango's revenues are generated through several streams. Keyword
    registration by artists and sales of recorded music are an instant and
    renewable resource for the company. Revenues are also gained via a
    percentage of the premium text message fee- percentages are
    carrier-specific. Also, artists wanting additional exposure through
    paid promotional campaigns can do so with the site. Following the
    issuance of the patent on Textango's technology the company hopes to
    issue licenses to potential competitors and expand into other areas of
    the entertainment industry.
    Agreements are in place with most major mobile carriers in the United
    States, except for T-Mobile, with pre-approved price points for each
    carrier ranging from 0.30 to 14.99 for songs and albums. The
    purchasing system and content delivery platform is compatible with
    each of the carriers creating a user-friendly service.

    Founded in Feb. of 2006, is led by Anthony Fischler, a
    seasoned entrepreneur who invented the mobile billing process, Thomas
    Scriven, a music industry specialist, and Chevon Hicks of, recipient of a Webby Award in 2006 for his viral video
    for New Line Cinema's "Snakes On A Plane". This founding group
    includes others with specific, music and telecommunications industry
    market knowledge, solid and stable business practices, and honed
    marketing skills.

    Sunday, October 7, 2007

    "Who needs record labels?" asks Newsday Columnist Glenn Gamboa

    Came across this excellent article in today's Newsday by columnist Glenn Gamboa. Thought you might find it of interest:

    Who needs record labels?

    Glenn Gamboa
    October 7, 2007

    With people still processing the news of Radiohead's decision to release and sell its new album "In Rainbows" on its own, the question of whether record companies are still necessary is raised again.

    It used to be a given that record companies were best at distribution and breaking in new acts. Well, the Internet continues to make previous distribution channels obsolete. And the ongoing shift to television (instead of radio) as the primary way to introduce new acts is making artists' management relationships with ad agencies and TV producers just as important as the long-running relationships between record companies and radio stations.

    Look at two recent breakthroughs. Feist's sophomore album "The Reminder" (Cherry Tree) arrived in May with a great deal of blogger interest and media hype. But she couldn't land a hit until Apple picked up her "1, 2, 3, 4" as the theme for its campaign to launch its new line of iPods. All that repetition on the Apple commercials has generated sales, pushing Feist's single into the iTunes Top 10 and the Billboard Top 30, with little radio support.

    Complete article

    Monday, October 1, 2007

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