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Pandora has signed a music rights deal with BMG as of September 11th, 2014. In an effort to secure a more favorable deal for the songwriters and copyright holders, the 4th largest publisher executed a direct deal with the most popular streaming service. In doing so, they bypassed the US Performing Rights Organizations BMI and ASCAP, who traditionally handle all licenses for digital performance royalties. These organizations are bound by government regulations and aged consent decrees. This deal follows Pandora's recent deal with Merlin, which allowed Pandora was able to negotiate direct deals with thousands of independent labels. MORE: Clear... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at hypebot
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Spotify has introduced video ads as an attempt to generate more revenue from non paying users. The leading music streaming service’s “Sponsored Session” will be a15 - 30 second video ad followed by 30 minutes of uninterrupted music. The idea behind this new strategy is allow non paying users to have longer uninterrupted listening time in exchange for an up front video message. A similar campaign was launched for desktop Spotify users called “Video Takeover”. Company’s opting into this new strategy are McDonalds, Nike, Sprint, and Target among others. MORE: ASCAP has announced a new Songwriter’s Workshop in NYC. This... Continue reading
Posted Sep 12, 2014 at hypebot
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Former President of CD Baby, Brian Felsen, Is Named New President of AdRev, a service that helps artists and labels monetize views on YouTube. AdRev's primary strategy is to place premium advertisements on videos to generate more money than the standard advertising formats. The company claims to have over 6 million copyrights, including music libraries of publishing companies and major recording artists. Felsen believes YouTube has an advantage over other streaming competitors because it has created a high demand for all types of video. MORE: Ludacris, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, and Lil Wayne Presented with Top Honors at the 2014... Continue reading
Posted Aug 29, 2014 at hypebot
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The Top 10 Music Publishing companies have been announced for the 2nd quarter of 2014. Leading the way with a 32.2% share of the top 100 songs is Sony/ATV. This is an increase from their 31.9% share in the 1st quarter of 2014. The quarterly success of Sony/ATV is partially due to their control of the the EMI Music Publishing catalog as well as country cuts like Miranda Lambert’s “Automatic”. Universal Music Publishing and Warner/Chappell ranked No. 2 and 3 with 15.2% and 14.3%. The 7 companies that followed ranked for the most part the same as the 1st quarter... Continue reading
Posted Aug 15, 2014 at hypebot
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SESAC plans to expand by hiring new chairman and CEO John Josephson. As Co-founder of Downtown Music LLC, former managing director to Allen & Co, and 22 year SESAC board member, Josephson plans to expand the business beyond traditional performing rights. With US PRO’s facing potential withdrawal from major publishers, SESAC predicts these companies will be looking for other options. With a reported $35 Million offer to Harry Fox Agency, SESAC hopes to expand their services to mechanical royalties. This is something ASCAP and BMI cannot do due to consent decrees. SESAC has also acquired a major stake in licensing... Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2014 at hypebot
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Downtown Music Publishing has signed Randy Newman to an administration deal for North America. The six time grammy award winner is responsible for hits such as “Short People”, “I Love L.A.” and “It’s Money That Matters” as well as movie scores for “Ragtime”, “Toy Story”, and “Monsters, Inc”. Newman signed with the NYC based Music Publishing company this week. Newman is currently working on songs for his new studio album expected to be released later this year via his longtime label Nonesuch Records. MORE: SESAC has signed Mariah Carey. Previously with BMI, Mariah Carey, has officially joined the Nashville based... Continue reading
Posted Jul 25, 2014 at hypebot
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Sony/ATV's Martin Bandier is threatening to withdraw all rights from ASCAP and BMI. Most major music publishers are looking to withdraw digital rights from the PROs and negotiate direct deals with digital services due to low royalty rates for publishers from digital services. Withdrawing digital rights from the PROs presents challenges to publishers like licensing to small businesses. Martin Bandier, the CEO of Sony/ATV has made it clear that if the Decrees are not amended he will “explore other options”. MORE: Over 700 Independent labels have come together against digital services to support fair deals for their recordings. This follows... Continue reading
Posted Jul 18, 2014 at hypebot
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Bop.fm has raised $2 Million in funding from Charles River Venutures. Launched in December 2013 by CEO Shehzad Daredia, the startup music streaming service provides a single platform for users listen to any song from any music service. With Rdio, Beats, Deezer, Spotify, Youtube, and Soundcloud integrated into their system, Bop.fm is attempting to bridge the gap between the several growing music services that may have different catalogs available. The company has also verified several of their artists and included tour dates, song lyrics, and playlists in their profiles. They hope that artists will also use their link to reach... Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2014 at hypebot
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Google has acquired Songza for a financial figure undisclosed to the public. Launched in 2010, the music streaming app is designed to curate playlists for a listener according to their mood. Unlike other competitors, Songza doesn’t use algorithms, they employ over 50 employees to create playlists for specific settings including weather, special activities, and moods. Google plans to bring on all of Songza’s current staff and eventually incorporate the service into Google’s “Google Play Music” and the new subscription based Youtube Music streaming service. Early investors in the company were music executives Scooter Braun and Troy Carter who manage the... Continue reading
Posted Jul 4, 2014 at hypebot
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SoundExchange announced a record-setting first quartrer distribution of digital royalties. The independent performing rights organization announced that $162.4 million were distributed to artists and labels in the first quarter of 2014, marking their largest Q1 payment to date. The report also indicated that SoundExchange payments represented 8.4% of all recorded revenue in the US in 2013. MORE: Amazon Prime Music is now available for Prime members in the US. Amazon's new streaming service will compete with Spotify and Apple. According to Amazon, members will have access to over a million songs. Amazon hopes that the new service will increase Prime... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2014 at hypebot
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Apple has acquired Beats for $3 BIllion. After much negotiation, Beats Electronics and the new Beats Music Service was acquired for a purchase price of $2.6 Billion and roughly $400 Million to vest in time, a lower price than the $3.2 Billion earlier speculated. This is Apple’s largest acquisition to date and will generate millions for majority stake holders and co-founders Dr. Dre and Jimmy Lovine as well as 14% stake holder, Universal Music Group. Apple CEO Tim Cook is quoted saying that part of the Beats team will move to Apple including the co-founders and their team who will... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2014 at hypebot
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The 62nd Annual BMI Pop Awards were held Tuesday, May 13th at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Los Angeles. Songwriter and Publisher members of BMI spent the night celebrating the PRO's top songs in the pop genre. Stevie Nicks was honored with the BMI Icon award and a tribute performance was given by artists Adam Levine, Cheryl Crow, and Lady Antebellum among others. Other notable awards include Pop Song of The Year to Jeremy Fraites and Wesley Schultz of The Lumineers for their song “Ho Hey” as well as Pop Publisher of The Year to Sony/ATV. MORE: The First-Quarter rankings... Continue reading
Posted May 16, 2014 at hypebot
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The NMPA has partnered with Rap Genius after months of legal controversy. Founded in 2009, Rap Genius has been getting major attention as it allows artists and fans to analyze lyric annotations and communicate in online forums. Up until now, the site has been in violation of copyright law by using unlicensed song lyrics. The NMPA sent take-down notices to Rap Genius as well as 50 other rising websites with similar unlicensed content. As of May 6th, the two parties have reached an agreement and will work together to allow the publishers under the NMPA to legally license their song... Continue reading
Posted May 9, 2014 at hypebot
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(UPDATED) PRS For Music has released its overall numbers for 2013. The U.K. Performing Rights Organization increased their annual revenue by collecting £596 million in 2013 to distribute to its collective estimated 100,000 members. Public performance royalties were the highest for the PRO with a total of £162.3 million. The majority of this was from U.K. television and radio broadcasts. A new law was also passed this week within the U.K. Government to ensure that U.K. collection societies comply with a regulated “Codes of Practice” when negotiating performance licenses with businesses. MORE: Diane Warren received International Music Industry Person of... Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2014 at hypebot
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Doug Morris will receive the Hitmaker Award from The Songwriter’s Hall Of Fame. Morris began his career in music in the mid 1960’s as a songwriter and producer for the publisher Robert Mellin and Laurie Records. During this time he wrote hits for The Chiffon and Brownsville Station. Later, in the 1970’s Morris moved to the business side of the industry and started the label Big Tree Records which was eventually acquired by Atlantic Records. Following this, he served executive roles at Warner Music Group, Universal Music Group, and Sony Music Entertainment. Morris was also the founder and former chairman... Continue reading
Posted Mar 14, 2014 at hypebot
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Martin Bandier, CEO of Sony/ATV has written a public letter of complaint to the Academy of Motion Pictures. After the controversial elimination of the song “Alone Yet Not Alone” from the nominations for Best Original Song, the Academy failed to replace the song with the next runner up. This was due to an apparent rulein the Oscar rulebook that says a nominated song that is disqualified will not be replaced. In Bandier's letter, he calls for a formal petition to change the rule while also explaining how important a role music has played in the film industry over the years.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 7, 2014 at hypebot
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The Songwriter Equity Act was introduced to Congress by Representative Douglas Collins on Tuesday, February 25th. The purpose of the bill is to update Section 114 and 115 of the Copyright Act that was written in 1909. This would allow songwriters, composers and publishers to receive fair compensation for their works in today's market place. An estimated two-thirds of a songwriter’s income today is heavily regulated by copyright law and consent decrees. This bill will help today’s songwriters and publishers get their fair share of mechanical and performance royalties. ASCAP, BMI, SESAC, and NMPA have all publicly praised this new... Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2014 at hypebot
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This year’s Super Bowl featured more current hits in commercials than any Super Bowl in recent history. Advertising executives at top music publishers credit their label partners’ role in making more master recordings available this year. The use of newer music also meant higher synch revenue for artists, many of whom signed one-year broadcast-plus-online deals and charged as much as low-six figures apiece for both publishing and master fees. Downtown Music Publishing is opening a Nashville office and has hired industry veteran Steven Markland as Vice President of A&R to help launch. Led by Founder/President Justin Kalifowitz, New York City... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2014 at hypebot
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BMI publishers are exploring their options following last December's rate court ruling stating publishers that withdrew their catalog solely for digital licensing on Jan. 1, 2013 are no longer part of any licensing deals that expire as of Jan. 1 2014. They are faced with two options: stay with BMI and hope the DOJ is willing to amend its consent decree or negotiate voluntary licenses at a market rate with music services. While the first option isn't a solution to below-market royalty rates, the second option will drastically change the face of music licensing, which has traditionally been done via... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2014 at hypebot
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BMI prevailed over Pandora in a rate court ruling stating that the Internet radio service’s blanket license does not include compositions controlled by publishers that have withdrawn digital rights from BMI. In other words, unless Pandora removes songs from massive publishers including UMPG, BMG and Kobalt or negotiates direct deals by January 1, it will be in copyright violation. This BMI/Pandora ruling has the exact opposite consequences of September’s ASCAP/Pandora ruling. The DOJ’s Ethan Glass had said prior to the BMI rate court’s conclusion that if the two rulings applied different sets of rules to each PRO, the competitive imbalance... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2013 at hypebot
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Nominations for the 56th Grammy Nominations were announced on Sunday. Nominees for Song of the Year include Just Give Me A Reason, Locked Out Of Heaven, Roar, Royals and Same Love. You can find the songwriters and publishers nominated for their respective songs here. Winners of this year's American Country Awards were announced Tuesday Night. Songwriters Mark Irwin, Josh Kear, Brad Warren and Brett Warren took home Song of the Year honors for Highway Don’t Care. You can find the full list of winners here. Nominations for the 2014 Golden Globes Awards were announced Thursday morning. The nominees for Best... Continue reading
Posted Dec 13, 2013 at hypebot
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The NMPA has agreed to temporarily shelve its takedown actions toward popular lyric annotation site Rap Genius. Last week, the NMPA sent take-down notices to Rap Genius and 49 other unlicensed lyric sites. However, in light of the site’s announcement of a licensing arrangement with Sony/ATV, both sides have agreed to meet for a productive and mutually beneficial agreement, rather than taking legal action. MORE: Sony’s Playstation 4, which hit American and Canadian stores last Friday, sold over 1 million consoles in 24 hours. Each PS4 has the capability to let gamers replace a game’s music with their own music... Continue reading
Posted Nov 22, 2013 at hypebot
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Nashville celebrated country music this week with four major awards shows - the CMA, ASCAP, BMI and SESAC awards. SESAC’s Nashville Music Awards honored Keifer Thompson as Songwriter of the Year, Jesse Rice’s “Cruise” as Song of the Year, and Magic Mustang Music as Publisher of the Year. A full list of the night’s winners can be found here. MORE: ASCAP’s 51st Annual Country Awards honored Josh Kear as Songwriter of the Year, both Josh Kear & Chris Tompkins’ “Drunk On You” and Neil Thrasher’s “How Country Feels” as Songs of the Year, and Warner/Chappell as Publisher of the Year.... Continue reading
Posted Nov 8, 2013 at hypebot
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Google’s YouTube is expected to launch a freemium, on-demand music streaming service before the year’s end. Sources report the service, which is designed with mobile usage in mind, will be similar to Spotify, but with video. Google already acquired most of the licenses required to launch the service in preparation for its Google Play Music All Access launch earlier this year. YouTube’s new streaming service is expected to launch before Beats Music, which may not launch until early 2014. STIM, Sweden’s PRO, has inked a deal with YouTube to pay Swedish artists, songwriters and rightsholders a percentage of ad revenue... Continue reading
Posted Oct 25, 2013 at hypebot
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The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is currently reviewing APRA’s virtual monopoly status in the field of performing rights acquisition and licensing. For APRA to continue its current statutory protection from court action under the competition provisions set forth in the Competition and Consumer Act 2010, the ACCC must determine that APRA’s current arrangement contributes more to public benefit than public detriment. In order to satisfy the public benefit test, the ACCC has decided APRA must make improvements and add transparency to its dispute resolution process, licensing schemes and ‘license back’ and ‘opt out’ facilities for direct licensing arrangements.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2013 at hypebot