From The New York Times:
The National Security Agency’s ability to spy on vast quantities of Internet traffic passing through the United States has relied on its extraordinary, decades-long partnership with a single company: the telecom giant AT&T. While it has been long known that American telecommunications companies worked closely with the spy agency, newly disclosed N.S.A. documents show that the relationship with AT&T has been considered unique and especially productive. One document described it as “highly collaborative,” while another lauded the company’s “extreme willingness to help.”
Jason Tate on 01/25/16 - 11:50 AM
Nielsen has released their 360 report for 2015.
And yet the biggest music consumption story of the year was not even available on streaming services. We were awed by Adele’s record-crushing 25. We monitored daily activity across sales, streaming, airplay and social, and were thrilled to report on every new milestone she achieved, incredible by any measuring stick.
Jason Tate on 01/11/16 - 11:41 AM
Sean Penn sat down to interview the infamous drug lord El Chapo for Rolling Stone.
I take no pride in keeping secrets that may be perceived as protecting criminals, nor do I have any gloating arrogance at posing for selfies with unknowing security men. But I'm in my rhythm. Everything I say to everyone must be true. As true as it is compartmentalized. The trust that El Chapo had extended to us was not to be fucked with. This will be the first interview El Chapo had ever granted outside an interrogation room, leaving me no precedent by which to measure the hazards. I'd seen plenty of video and graphic photography of those beheaded, exploded, dismembered or bullet-riddled innocents,...
Jason Tate on 01/09/16 - 08:25 PM
MyMusicTaste, a startup that looks at fan interest for tours to help bands plan where to play concerts, has landed a new $10 million round of funding to expand. Catherine Shu, writing for Techcrunch:
Chief executive officer Ethan Jaeseok Lee came up with the idea for MyMusicTaste while running a Korean fan site for Coldplay. While trying to figure out why Coldplay hadn’t toured to Seoul yet, Lee realized how risky live concerts can be for music artists and organizers.
Jason Tate on 01/08/16 - 01:01 PM
Michelle Garcia, writing for Vox:
Bell, then 18, and his mother sued the school to have his record cleared of any wrongdoing. Now his small-town case may reach the US Supreme Court (after the Fifth Circuit ruled in his favor in 2014), and there are much broader implications at stake: essentially, the First Amendment right to use rap as an artistic form of expression and a legitimate method of protest. That’s why rappers Killer Mike, Big Boi, and T.I., and artists like Favianna Rodriguez have joined scholars and legal experts in filing a 25-page amicus brief to the court in support of Bell’s freedom of speech on Monday. The brief acts as Hip-Hop 101 for the court, whose average age is...
Jason Tate on 12/23/15 - 12:49 PM
HitsDailyDouble profiles Crush Management:
Fall Out Boy built Crush; not only were they our first really big band, but they laid the groundwork for Panic! at the Disco, Gym Class Heroes and Cobra Starship all stemming from Pete’s label, Decaydance [now DCD2 Records]. They took these kids on tour, trained them on using social media to build a following and so on. Fall Out Boy is maybe the most important thing we’ve done or will ever do, because they built the foundation that Crush stands on today.
Jason Tate on 12/09/15 - 08:51 PM
Stuart Dredge, writing for Music Ally:
But that’s the future. Right now, we’re in a transitional period where you can spend more than a day of your life listening to a band in a year, but only generate a small-cup-of-coffee-sized payout for their rightsholders. How anyone reacts to this is a personal decision. Mine has been to continue paying for Spotify, but to augment that by paying for music again, as directly – and if there aren’t sales from the artist’s site or BandCamp page, as independently – as I can. Especially when it’s a new artist.
Jason Tate on 12/07/15 - 12:35 PM
Sinead Garvan, writing for the BBC, on a new group called "Girls Against" that is fighting against girls being groped at shows.
These five young women have all been groped at gigs and now they are doing something about it. [...] They say they want to raise awareness of the issue and get more bands to talk about it so attitudes change. Girls Against say that if other artists tell fans it's wrong, people who do it will feel stupid if their favourite band is calling them out about it.
Jason Tate on 12/05/15 - 02:04 PM
Nathan Hubbard, writing on Medium:
This won’t change until fans start pressuring the artists to facilitate that change. Artists are intensely sensitive about their brands. With social media giving loud voices to all, artists are hyper-concerned with criticism for high ticket prices… even though they have historically enabled a service fee system that exploits their fans. It’s why so many good tickets often make it into the hands of brokers from venues, promoters, and artists directly. Ever wonder why you see so many VIP Packages for sale? They’re designed to charge market price for a ticket with a few low-cost add-ons attached. So why can’t artists own their income desires and get paid...
Jason Tate on 12/02/15 - 09:59 PM
Brian McAndrews, the CEO of Pandora, writing for Business Insider:
Defenders of free on-demand music will surely counter by reminding us every song they play is paid for with royalties. I also expect some will argue that free on-demand is an essential on-ramp to a sustainable subscription business. And both of these statements may well be true. But I would argue that an on-demand on-ramp is one thing; a permanent, free on-demand highway is another. The first is good for the long-term health of the music industry. The second is not.
Jason Tate on 12/02/15 - 09:57 PM
Spin released a list of the "101 Best Songs of 2015." Pretty sure they can't fire me for saying that Craig Manning laughed at this list.

Submitted by bradsonemanband
Jason Tate on 12/01/15 - 12:50 PM
Ethan Kaplan, writing on Medium:
One of the biggest issues in music is the assumption that people care about music. We assume that music is important to everyone universally. It is the backbone of a civilized society. It has existed since people banged stones together. The fact is, music is wall paper for most people. It is a thing in the background, but not the one thing they are passionate about. They like “that song” but other than a few “that songs” through the course of the year, they don’t really care all that much. Five records a year, that’s about it.
Jason Tate on 12/01/15 - 12:46 PM
Ariel Rechtshaid (ex-The Hippos) worked with Adele on "When We Were Young." He recently talked to The Fader about the process:
Rechtshaid is used to pushing the artists he works with in unusual directions. As well as helming records for artists such as Haim, Sky Ferreira and Vampire Weekend, in the past few years he's been in high demand by the mainstream, giving a leftfield touch to tracks on big pop albums. Perhaps this can be traced back to 2012, when he made R&B cornball Usher sound like a whole other artist on the simmering “Climax.” In the past 12 months alone, he’s worked with Madonna on her comeback single “Living For Love,” Carly Rae Jepsen on E•MO•TION standout “All That,”...
Jason Tate on 11/24/15 - 01:41 PM
Kelsey Butterworth, writing for Future of Music:
Iovine is not evil, and in this regard, he is not special. And sexist gaffes like this offer an opportunity to correct misconceptions below the surface. All of the industry women I know have stories about workplace sexism, and I am no exception. There is the constant sneering, patronizing, skeptical questioning of my taste in music. There was the time in high school when, while setting up my lead guitar rig for an award-winning jazz band, a (male) hired audio hand grabbed gear out of my hands, intoning that there was no way I understood how to hook up an amp. There was the time in college when I worked as an unpaid festival volunteer, and...
Jason Tate on 11/23/15 - 12:46 PM
Le Bataclan plans to reopen.
Fluctuat nec mergitur is a Latin saying that translates to “Tossed but never sunk,” and it’s a motto of sorts for many Parisians. Dominique Revert, the club’s co-manager who was not present the night of the shootings, conjures it now and says it will be Le Bataclan’s raison d’etre moving forward. “It will reopen, no question about it,” he says. “Hearts will be heavy for a few months, a few years. But we will reopen. We will not surrender.”

Submitted by Avalanche1
Jason Tate on 11/19/15 - 12:03 PM
Spencer Ritchie, writing for Music Think Tank:
At $71 billion, Americans spend more money on the lottery per year than they do on both live and recorded music. The same could be said of weddings, and for about the same amount. Live and recorded music, ticket sales, and digital and physical recordings, including streaming, are worth instead a total of only $6.8 billion. Nielsen puts the average per capita consumer spending on music in 2014 at $104, and this includes live performance and festival spending. This figure seems to be much exaggerated. For a population of 350 million, it would mean a total music spending in the US of nearly $35 billion, making festivals and, perhaps, artist...
Jason Tate on 11/19/15 - 11:55 AM
Tom Avis, writing for Noisey:
In researching this story I heard of several, increasingly elaborate, techniques bands have used to sneak themselves and their equipment into the US. A common move is traveling separately without gear in order to look less like a band, sending band members over the border in separate cars or on planes and busses to deflect suspicion, and then picking them up on the other side. Once over the border, some bands have full second sets of equipment stashed with friends in the US. Others take advantage of Guitar Center's (a large American chain of musical instrument retailers) no-questions-asked 30 day return policy, buying an entire band’s worth of gear, keeping...
Jason Tate on 11/18/15 - 04:20 PM
Adam Rogers, writing for Wired, on the idea of an infinite series:
These new movies won't just be sequels. That's not the way the transnational entertainment business works anymore. Forget finite sequences; now it's about infinite series. [...] Everywhere, studio suits are recruiting creatives who can weave characters and story lines into decades-spanning tapestries of prequels, side-quels, TV shows, games, toys, and so on. Brand awareness goes through the roof; audiences get a steady, soothing mainline drip of familiar characters.

Forget the business implications for a moment, though. The shared universe represents something rare in Hollywood: a new idea. It evolved from the...
Jason Tate on 11/17/15 - 12:32 PM
Alyssa Kai, writing for The Guardian (I missed this when it was originally posted):
If there is one ethos of punk, and especially DIY (Do It Yourself) punk, it is that the punk world is for everybody: anyone can sing, anyone can play, anyone can listen, anyone can participate. But in reality, men run the scene, men are the scene, and men always have been and probably always will be at the center of the scene. As a trans woman, sometimes I just go through the motions: I do my work, I perform my best, I seek out my moments of joy.

But it’s never perfect, and it’s occasionally awful: without warning, in the audience or on a stage, I’ll hear someone say, “This song is about feminism,...
Jason Tate on 11/13/15 - 12:35 PM
The Future of Music Collation has written up an explainer on mechanical royalties:
You may have heard about controversies over unpaid mechanical royalties on the interactive streaming service Spotify. For us, the bottom line is that songwriters must be properly paid when their music is played on any service. In this post, we’ll examine the reasons this isn’t happening across the board.

First, it might be helpful to understand a bit more about what a mechanical royalty is, how it is licensed and whom it pays.
Jason Tate on 11/13/15 - 12:27 PM
Jonathan Diener, writing for The Runout:
At the end of the day, you are paying money for tickets to watch a performance. Meeting them is just an added bonus, which is why you very literally have to pay money to guarantee it happens. With over thousands of people all having a story and things to sign, it will take a very long time to organize it. You shouldn’t feel upset or disappointed if you don’t get to meet someone outside of these meet and greets. Most of all, you shouldn’t ridicule the artist because you didn’t have a chance to meet them. At the end of the day, it’s about them. To be able to tour all over the world artists need to keep healthy regimens and for the most part,...
Jason Tate on 11/11/15 - 12:33 PM
FiveThirtyEight breaks down a new study that looks at if streaming is cannibalizing or boosting music sales:
They set out to determine, in their words, “not only whether streaming displaces sales but, if so, at what rate.” To do so they measured the growth of Spotify streaming and the sales of digital music in 21 countries for an eight month period in 2013, and on all music sales (including physical ones) in the U.S. from April 2013 through March 2015. What they found corroborated Swift’s claim, at least in part: more streaming led to fewer digital track sales. Specifically, they estimate that for every 137 streams there was one fewer sale.
Jason Tate on 11/02/15 - 02:51 PM
Brendan Kelly, writing for Noisey, on why Pearl Jam is the most influential band of the 90s, notNirvana:
A few years ago, I interviewed Tom Delonge at an Angels & Airwaves show. He made sure to tell me about how he has always drawn his influence from the 70s’ mod scene, the band The Jam, and the esoteric symbolism surrounding the occult. He really said this. It took everything I had in me to not reply, “Um, no. You’re the dick-joke guy in blink-182, BRO. You grew up listening to NOFX, and we all watched you do it.”

Tom clearly just wanted to sound cooler than his influences. Which is fine. I want to sound cool in interviews, too.
Jason Tate on 10/31/15 - 10:59 AM
Sammy Andrews, writing for Music Business Worldwide about combining streaming services with live shows:
The potential here is fucking huge… for all of us. Beyond the incredible potential for directly connecting with fans who are clearly likely to want to see certain bands live, something that really strikes me about this route is the incentive-based nature of the promotion Spotify are testing right now.

If we are about to see streaming services offering exclusive deals to ‘top listeners’ that could very well drive streams in the process. And as people want to have a chance of access these ‘exclusive’ promotions, it could also help the conversion from freemium to premium if it’s...
Jason Tate on 10/30/15 - 11:20 AM
Eriq Gardner, writing for The Hollywood Reporter:
"Kesha now faces an abysmal decision: work with her alleged abuser...or idly and passively wait as her career tick-tocks away," writes her attorney. "She is precluded from working in perpetuity because the term of her contract can only be satisfied if she records three more albums. Kesha needs the Court’s assistance."
Jason Tate on 10/30/15 - 10:37 AM
Colin Stutz, writing for Billboard:
"Ms. Swift knows exactly who committed the assault -- it was Mueller -- and she is not confused in the slightest about whether her long-term business acquaintance, Mr. Haskell, was the culprit," reads the countersuit. "Resolution of this Counterclaim will demonstrate that Mueller alone was the perpetrator of the humiliating and wrongful conduct targeted against Ms. Swift, and will serve as an example to other women who may resist publicly reliving similar outrageous and humiliating acts."
Jason Tate on 10/28/15 - 10:17 PM
The Daily Beast has posted an article on how SXSW has canceled a panel discussing harassment due to ... well, harassment and threats. Buzzfeed and many prominent voices are talking of pulling out of the festival.
SXSW’s response at first was simply to assure us that the public vote was only one part of the panel approval process and we wouldn’t be automatically disqualified if flooded with downvotes, which was nice but not my primary concern. My primary concern was that every time a shitstorm develops around a harassment target and lots of people start joining in the fun, gamified activity of mobbing the target increases the chances of it jumping out of the current venue into a more...
Jason Tate on 10/27/15 - 11:31 AM
Steve Knopper, writing for Rolling Stone, on how Pandora owes record labels over $90 million.
In a victory for artists and record labels, Internet radio service Pandora announced Thursday it would pay $90 million to settle a lawsuit over royalties for songs recorded before 1972. Due to a U.S. copyright loophole, Pandora has played these songs without compensating Warner, Sony, Universal and other labels that own the rights to the master recordings in recent years.
Jason Tate on 10/23/15 - 07:37 PM
William Bedell, writing for Motherboard, about building a botnet to rack up thousands of fraudulent plays on Spotify:
If they want to save the profitability of streaming, both independent artists and advertisers should call on music streaming services to combat streaming fraud however possible. Spotify and other services could accomplish this by taking listener authenticity seriously, and perhaps by splitting revenues more fairly.
Jason Tate on 10/19/15 - 11:18 AM
The New York Times is reporting that Playboy will soon no longer print nude photos in their magazine.
Previous efforts to revamp Playboy, as recently as three years ago, have never quite stuck. And those who have accused it of exploiting women are unlikely to be assuaged by a modest cover-up. But, according to its own research, Playboy’s logo is one of the most recognizable in the world, along with those of Apple and Nike. This time, as the magazine seeks to compete with younger outlets like Vice, Mr. Flanders said, it sought to answer a key question: “if you take nudity out, what’s left?”
Jason Tate on 10/13/15 - 11:11 AM
Peter Kafka, writing for Re/Code:
Okay: YouTube wants us to know that the video for “See You Again,” Wiz Khalifa’s Paul Walker tribute from the most recent “Fast and the Furious” movie has been seen a billion times. But what YouTube really wants us to know is that lots of music videos have generated a billion views recently. Up until a few years ago, no video had generated a billion views, but now it’s happening all the time.
Jason Tate on 10/13/15 - 11:09 AM
Rachel Grace Almeida, writing for Broadly:
This can't exist in a space that is dominated by men. Music needs women whether it wants it or not. If this abuse continues, it will drive women even further away from an already-exclusive industry. You have to protect yourself and your career by protecting the man, and I'm fucking sick of doing that.
Charlie Joseph on 10/05/15 - 09:31 AM
Dan Buckley, writing on his blog, about how he sent one email to get his unsigned band on tour with Emery, This Wild Life, and The Classic Crime (I wonder what that starred out .net URL is).
So we waited for a couple days without hearing anything back. I was beginning to get nervous, but then, two days later I received a phone call. It was Matt Carter. He said he’d read my email. He made it very clear that sending my email was a total long shot, but it would probably work out to have us out on tour with Emery. He went on to say the email had addressed everything they needed to complete the tour and it didn’t make sense to say “No”.

Finally after all my failing, we had a huge...
Jason Tate on 10/01/15 - 12:05 PM
Razor and Tie have partnered with Concord Bicycle Music.
Under the new venture, Concord Bicycle, which includes Concord Music Group and publishing company Bicycle Music Company, will administer Razor & Tie Music Publishing, support the expansion of the Kidz Bop franchise, and provide other strategic resources.
Jason Tate on 10/01/15 - 11:04 AM
NASA believes it has found signs of water on Mars.
“This is tremendously exciting,” James L. Green, the director of NASA’s planetary science division, said during a news conference on Monday. “We haven’t been able to answer the question, ‘Does life exist beyond Earth?’ But following the water is a critical element of that. We now have, I think, great opportunities in the right locations on Mars to thoroughly investigate that.”
Jason Tate on 09/28/15 - 02:02 PM
Kim Kelly, writing for Noisey:
The idea of a rich person giving money to a creative person in exchange for status and cool points is nothing new—it started back in ancient Rome and feudal Japan, and the most enduring image of the patron surfaced during the Renaissance. Florence’s famed Medici clan financially supported some of the most gifted artisans of the age, including Leonardo Da Vinci and Michelangelo, as a way to launder money and burnish the family's blood-splattered reputation (they also secured immortality in the process, judging by how many music industry thinkpieces have name-dropped them over the past decade when discussing the modern concept of patronage). Sound familiar?...
Jason Tate on 09/25/15 - 02:40 PM
Geoff Rickly tells the New York Times that his decision to cut ties with Martin Shkreli may end the label. I feel like if there was ever a time to crowdfund some money to get the label back on their feet ... this would be the time. I'd be in.
Mr. Rickly said losing Mr. Shkreli’s financial support might result in the label’s closing. “This is going to end the career of the record label, no doubt,” he said. “If I were a band on the label I would be having a serious crisis of faith right now. The amount of money I have in the bank doesn’t cover my outstanding invoices. It’s devastating
Jason Tate on 09/23/15 - 04:58 PM
A judge has ruled that the companies collecting royalties on the song "Happy Birthday" do not hold a valid copyright.
In a stunning reversal of decades of copyright claims, the judge ruled that Warner/Chappell never had the right to charge for the use of the "Happy Birthday To You" song. Warner had been enforcing a copyright since 1988, when it bought Birch Tree Group, the successor to Clayton F. Summy Co., which claimed the original disputed copyright.
Jason Tate on 09/23/15 - 10:32 AM
Luke O'Neil, writing for Bullett Media:
I don’t want to speak for Brand New here, an almost universally loved band among a certain age of punk fans, but it’s probably safe to say capitalist drug speculators weren’t their intended target demo when they were writing The Devil and God are Raging Inside of Me. Elsewhere he shared a photo of himself in possession of what he says is Kurt Cobain’s credit card, because when you’re a millionaire music fan what else are you going to waste your stupid money on besides the literal emblem of dead celebrity’s credit rating?
Jason Tate on 09/21/15 - 08:51 PM
A settlement has been reached between Riot Fest and the St. Anthony Hospital.
The hospital had filed suit Friday to halt the popular event because of concerns that the "extreme noise" and congestion surrounding the music festival would compromise patient safety. In response, event organizers claimed the hospital had threatened to sue unless it was paid $158,000, prompting the hospital's chief spokeswoman to call the organizers liars.

Submitted by Fun Ghoul
Jason Tate on 09/09/15 - 01:12 PM
This week is "National Suicide Prevention Week" and there's a bunch of resources I hope you'll read and share. As always, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is always open if you need to talk to anyone. I've used music most of my life to cope and get out of my own head, and if you're reading this site the chances are you do too. But I also know that sometimes talking to others, while hard, is what's needed.
Jason Tate on 09/07/15 - 12:55 PM
Jordan Walsh, writing for Safer Scene:
But Warped Tour 2015 finished its run nearly a month ago. Why are we still talking about it? The fact of the matter is that Warped Tour has significance in the alternative rock scene. For the past two decades, the traveling festival has provided a way for fans to catch a sizable portion of the subculture’s most popular acts in one chaotic swoop. While a visit to a single stop will reveal a diverse group of people, the significance of the tour is perhaps most weighty for the youngest of its attendees.

For these fans, this event is a cultural epicenter: a place where a community normally accessed via the Internet suddenly takes tangible form. It’s...
Jason Tate on 09/02/15 - 11:24 AM
Poly-Graph.co has pulled the data out of Spotify to search for the most timeless songs from the 90's.
Out of the entire catalog of music from the 90s, these are the tracks on the trajectory to survive. Some of my friends were deeply disturbed by what's been lost in time (e.g., Pearl Jam). And No Diggity isn’t just anecdotally timeless, it’s the fifth most-played song from the 90s. Note the tracks that hardly charted on Billboard, in their day. "Smells Like Teen Spirit," a track that never reached the Billboard Top 5 when it was released in 1992, is now the most-played song from the 90s.
Jason Tate on 09/02/15 - 10:48 AM
Tracey Wise, writing for Huffington Post:
In response to this event, I shared my story, The response I got from other women saying they had experienced similar illustrated I am not alone. From this, I established a Twitter account in order for women to share their stories, and highlight that what happened to me was not an isolated incident (it was also, sadly, not the first incident like this). My current hope is that directed measures will be coming to Camden soon, to try make gigs safer for women. Please contact me via Twitter for more information.
Jason Tate on 08/26/15 - 10:55 AM
Maryam Hassan, writing for Punktastic:
It’s also complicated because of the band/fan dynamic. If you read a lot of these stories, the women in them trust the band members. We are talking about teenage girls here, and I don’t want to generalise teenagers at all, but do you remember idolising a band when you were a kid? I know that if any of the bands I loved when I was 14/15 had been texting me I would have been super excited and knowing me, done most things they would have asked. You’re young, a little naive and you don’t expect people to use you for things. So to shout at them for going along with sending nudes, or having sex with men in bands isn’t right.
Jason Tate on 08/25/15 - 10:32 AM

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