« September 2005 | Main | November 2005 »

Hypebot's Digital Music QuickNews:

Npr_2NPR has recently reached the 4 million download mark for it's 150 podcasts from 7 stations. Given NPR's programming it's safe to bet that it's not just kids driving this trend.  Unfortunately the music industry is missing the boat on podcasts due to difficult music licensing rules. 

- "Friendster may have been trumped by MySpace, but the company is still striking deals. Following a recent tie-up with Grouper, meeting and socializing on Friendster will now involve the sharing of photos, music and video content. Grouper is a peer-to-peer application that allows members to stream music content to one another...Overall, both Friendster and MySpace will provide yet another boost for the music video format, which continues to surge online. For Friendster, the Grouper deal is part of a larger effort to energize its member base of 20 million, of which about 8 million are active, per the C|Net report." - From Digital Music News.

- In a move that every music and media should be replicating MTV today announced that Jason Mtv_12 Hirschhorn has been appointed the Company's inaugural Chief Digital Officer (CDO). In this new global role, Hirschhorn will be responsible for creating and implementing cross-company strategies for growing MTV Networks' existing and future brands -- including the music, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central and Spike channels -- across all existing and emerging digital platforms.

Additionally, he will coordinate the business, product development and technical operations of MTV Networks' expanding portfolio of digital media businesses while overseeing new acquisitions in the interactive space, including the recently-acquired video destination IFILM. Read the full press release here.


Sprint Nextel Offering Full Song Downloads To Cell Phones

According to Digital Music Nes, "Sprint Nextel will soon launch an over-the-air, music download  Sprintphone_1service in the United States, beating both Verizon and Cingular. According to a source within Sprint Nextel, individual track downloads will retail for $2.50 each, and compatible devices will be available November 1st. The source also indicated that the full-track downloads will come bundled with a ringtone..."

"...Sprint will deliver hundreds of thousands of full-length digital tracks, and will giveaway five free songs as part of an introductory offer that ends January 14th. The songs will download directly to the mobile device, though the tracks can also be played on a computer, transferred to an MP3 player, or burned to a CD."

"Customers can gain access to the music downloads by first subscribing to the Sprint Power Vision multimedia service, which...offers streaming television, music, and games, and builds upon an existing multimedia offering already in place..."

More info at powervision.sprint.com.

Continue reading "Sprint Nextel Offering Full Song Downloads To Cell Phones" »


DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS - WEEK IN REVIEW

- Several companies unveiled quarterly earnings reports this week:

- RealNetworks showed handsome increases in total music subscribers, and remained in the Real_8 black once again. XM Satellite Radio showed strong subscriber and revenue increases, though profit losses remained problematic.

- Portable MP3 manufacturers iRiver and Creative both showed heavy profit declines. Reports from Napster and Sirius are coming next week, and Loudeye will report on November 9th.

- Apple introduced an iTunes Music Store in Australia, though Sony BMG remained a licensing holdout. And iMesh released a beta version of its much-anticipated, industry-sanctioned P2P application.

- And a new report this week showed heavy returns and an overall lukewarm reception of the Motorolalogo_5Motorola ROKR device. Consumers may have been expecting larger storage capacity, and an experience that more closely resembled stand-alone iPod models.


Coalition Of Indy Music Stores Top 200 Chart for 10-25-05

Cims_28WAR 1 DEPECHE MODE|PLAYING THE ANGEL

ISL 2 THRICE|VHEISSU

ATO 3 MY MORNING JACK|Z

EPIC 4 APPLE*FIONA|EXTRAORDINARY MACH

WAR 5 YOUNG*NEIL|PRAIRIE WIND

WRPR 6 BOARDS OF CANAD|CAMPFIRE HEADP

EPIT 7 DANGER DOOM|MOUSE & THE MASK

WAR 8 MEST|PHOTOGRAPHS

ATLG 9 DEATH CAB FOR C|PLANS

FTCT 10 ANIMAL COLLECTI|FEELS

EPIC 10 FRANZ FERDINAND|YOU COULD HAVE

MOT 12 WONDER*STEVIE|TIME TO LOVE

BNTE 13 MONK/COLTRANE|THELONIOUS MONK

AANC 14 BROKEN SOCIAL S|BROKEN SOCIAL

DRGC 15 SILVER JEWS|TANGLEWOOD NUMBERS

DEF 16 WEST*KANYE|LATE REGISTRATION

GEFN 17 SIGUR ROS|TAKK

RHMS 18 ATMOSPHERE|YOU CANT IMAGINE HO

UNIV 19 MARLEY*DAMIAN|WELCOME TO JAMRO

ROAD 20 NICKELBACK|ALL THE RIGHT REASO

LHWY 21 ADAMS*RYAN|JACKSONVILLE CITY N

RCA 22 GRAY*DAVID|LIFE IN SLOW MOTION

OVCT 23 IRON & WINE/CAL|IN THE REINS

FATR 24 PROPAGANDHI|POTEMKIN CITY LIMI

VRGN 25 GORILLAZ|DEMON DAYS

Continue reading "Coalition Of Indy Music Stores Top 200 Chart for 10-25-05" »


Is Infinity Killing Music Radio?

Fmqblogo_fp_6 FMQB has the most complete coverage of the Howard Stern replacement derby results here as well as a complete listings of changes by market here

What should be of most concern to those in the music industry is the qucikening march away from  Freefm_1music based program with many major markets including NYC, LA and Philadelphia loosing important outlets for rock and active rock to Infinity's new talk based FREE FM format.

Hitslogo2_8HITS asks the question that should be on mind of everyone involved in or even a fan of music "..with the changes going on at alternative radio, and with rock releases that succeed at Top 40 as the only rock acts that reach platinum sales, what are the new benchmarks for rock releases that are deemed successes for major labels? Has rock transitioned only to niche markets?" 

And we wonder if XM, Sirius, and internet radio (whcich will soon be vailable on many cell phones)can pick up the slack?

We'd love to hear your comments.


US CD Sales Inch Slightly Upward

Ashlee_right_1According to Digital Music News, "CD sales moved upward this week in the US, an encouraging sign ahead of the holidays. Most recently, total weekly albums sales moved to 10.8 million units, an increase of nearly one percent over the comparable period last year, and a 4.5 percent jump over the previous week. The latest figures bring the year-to-date total to 447 million units, a deficit of 9.8 percent over comparable tallies last year. While that may seem like a heavy gap, the gulf was actually greater than 10 percent earlier this month. Several artists helped to power the increase, including Ashlee Simpson, Rod Stewart, Martina McBride, Nickelback, and Stevie Wonder."


UK Band Uses New Tech To Build Base And Hits #1

Here's an interesting story about the Arctic Monkeys, a British band that built a large following well before signing with a label by giving away Mp3' and holding spontaneous gigs announced via text messaging.  When the commercial single was finally released, it immediately reached the No. 1 spot and a sold-out tour UK followed.

Read the full article here.


Radio Station Website Visitors Prefer Streaming & Podcasting

Radio_10According to Digital Music News, "Terrestrial radio listeners are doing more than just passively tuning in these days. According to a recent survey published by online media consultancy MediaBase, more listeners are actively streaming and podcasting station content. While station websites usually offer a wide range of local information, contests, and other content like polls, MediaBase reports that over half of visitors are interested in streaming terrestrial broadcasts online. And another 11 percent access podcasts of station content, part of a growing trend. Sports and news talk radio draw the biggest podcasting crowds..."


Labels And Artists Fight Over Piece Of Growing Download Pie

According  to Wired.com, "Thanks to the success of iPod and iTunes, online music sales are growing at a healthy clip. But record labels complain they aren't recouping expenses, while musicians say they're being squeezed to take a pay cut..."

Ipod2_5"...Though deals differ, labels are offering to pay about 8.5 percent royalties on the wholesale price of a digital sale, but royalty collectors want 12 percent of the retail price."

"...Divisions are so strong that artists, managers, publishers and labels can't agree. A BPI spokesman said its decision to take royalty collectors to court followed "several fruitless years" of negotiation."

"With the success of Apple's iTunes, labels expect digital music to account for up to 30 percent of world music sales by 2008, according to estimates submitted to the European Commission by Universal Music."


New Free Software Promises You'll Never Miss A Concert Again

The promise is of this new application is that you'll never miss a concert that you care about again.

OnTour compares the artists on your computer with the concert tour database.

You can easily add additional artists and search the concert schedules of your favorite venues. OnTour is powered by PassAlongNetworks and its B2B2C digital media platform, p2pREVOLUTION - promoting community, convenience, and empowerment.

OnTour is a free download:

http://OnTour.PassAlong.com

 


Lack Lacks SonyBMG Backing. Days Look Numbered

Hitslogo2_7From HITS online, "It appears the clash among Sony BMG executives has intensified in the week since the story broke that Bertelsmann told Sony it is against renewing SBMG chief Andy Lack’s contract when it expires in six months, the New York Post’s Tim Arango writes today."

"According to the Post, outgoing SBMG COO (and long-time BMG exec) Michael Smellie told a group  of financial analysts that he would consider staying on if changes were made to top management, apparently referring to Lack."

And in a private discussion with one London-based analyst, Smellie reportedly said that Sony label Sonybmg_19 Columbia’s recent renewal of Bruce Springsteen’s contract for upwards of $100 million was a "trigger" in unleashing anti-Lack sentiment and one of the main reasons for Bertelsmann withdrawing its support..."

"...According to reports, Sony has the ability to extend Lack’s tenure through the end of 2006, but after that, any additional extension would require Bertelsmann’s approval."


World Music Download Site To Launch

Worldmusicnetwork_1Over the last ten years, World Music Network has become one of the leading forces on the world music scene, receiving numerous accolades and praise from both the press and the public. Producing Rough Guide introductions to music from around the world, fund-raising CDs for Amnesty, Oxfam and New Internationalist, innovative and critically acclaimed single artist albums on the Riverboat Records label and the new Introducing label, World Music Network continues to bring world music to a wider audience.

The World Music Network will be launching a world music digital downloading website early in 2006, offering a service similar to iTunes but with a specific focus on world music. This will be tied in with a synchronization rights website designed to promote music for use in film, television and video games. We are inviting partners to sign up to this service to have their catalogue made available to the increasing digital downloading sector of the market.  This site is one of the first of what will certainly be many niche music download sites to launch in the coming months.

Continue reading "World Music Download Site To Launch" »


DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS - WEEK IN REVIEW

- Various creative unions demanded discussions over royalty allocations following an agreement between Apple and ABC/Disney. The agreement, which coincided with the release of iTunes 6 and a new video-enabled iPod, authorized several shows for download one day after broadcast. Meanwhile, Apple and Samsung dropped plans to partner on flash memory design and production following scrutiny from local regulators.

- EMI pointed to an earnings improvement, powered by some heavy-selling superstar releases and a growing digital picture.

- Motorola was quite active this week. The company dipped into mobile-based podcasting, Motorolalogo_4 teamed with MTV to offer a "mobisode," and opened its iRadio platform to independent artist content.

- Both iTunes and MTV delivered a series of digital exclusives this week for Madonna, part of a major pre-release blitz by the superstar.

Sirius_radio_11And Sirius Satellite Radio unveiled two devices that broke the $50 price barrier, while XM announced a receiver giveaway promotion to attendees of the upcoming World Series.

- Meanwhile, Australian record labels won a favorable settlement against local ISP Swiftel this week. Various employees of the ISP were accused of operating a BitTorrent file-sharing hub.

Cd_9 Album sales in the US continued to drop.

- From Digital Music News


MUSIC INDUSTRY QUICK NEWS

- According to the BBC, "A new study estimates that the average person spends about £21,000 ($37,172 US) on music during their lifetime.  "The figure includes the amount spent on equipment and concert-going as well as music on CDs and records. Music enthusiasts are likely to spend more than double that, parting with just over £44,000 ($52,751 US) in a lifetime."

-  According to Digital Music News, "Album sales continued to suffer in the US last week, part of a disappointing yearly performance. Pre-recorded CDs dipped another 2.6 percent when compared to the comparable period last year, while also dropping 5.6 percent over the previous week. But the most glaring gap comes from year-to-date sales, which continue to lag by more than 10 percent over similar figures in 2004. Overall, the year-over-year deficit has climbed to nearly 50 million units, a large stock that could be difficult to overcome in less than one quarter. Various international markets are also suffering, though British trade association BPI recently pointed to an 8.9 percent increase in pre-recorded CD sales last quarter."

- From The DigitalMusic Weblog - "This indie label is about as polarized from the oligarchy model as an indie outfit can get. Comfort Stand is a label operated “by musicians, for musicians.” It does not capture any rights from the artist. It does not accept music that seeks to restrict file-sharing privileges. It does not manufacture CDs or any other physical product. It offers its entire catalog for downloading (zipped album or singe tracks) and streaming (Flash or m3u). It presents only music its operators are passionate about. I’ve heard some gorgeous stuff here. Comfort Stand’s motto? “Everybody needs free music.”


Another Label Bites The Dust: Koch Shuts Nashville Branch

KochrecordslogoCelebrityAccess MediaWire - Koch Entertainment shut down it’s Nashville operations on Tuesday, October 18th, displacing five employees, including GM Nick Hunter, and nearly a dozen artists.

Others that were left jobless include director of creative services Chuck Rhodes, who has been with the company since its launch, director of marketing and promotion Jack Purcell, bluegrass marketing and promotion manager Amy Murray, and head of new media Kim Drummond.

The Koch Nashville artist roster included Dean Miller, Robert Earl Keen, Daryle Singletary, the Hacienda Brothers, Cledus T. Judd, the Tractors and Dale Watson. Country rock legend Charlie Daniels was signed as part of a joint venture with Daniels’ Blue Hat Records label. Koch had also increased efforts in the bluegrass field, signing Ronnie Bowman, Jerry Douglas and the group 3 Fox Drive.  A deal with Billy Ray Cyrus was scheduled to be signed on Monday.

Click below to read full Celebrity Access article.

Continue reading "Another Label Bites The Dust: Koch Shuts Nashville Branch" »


Music Companies Missing Opportunity To Make Money With New Video iPod

Ipodvideo_2The tech editor of the LA Times loves the new video iPod, but suggested that it might be worth waiting awhile to go out and buy one.

He loved the image quality, liked the price and applauded the ease in downloading and playing content. But he still suggested waiting to jump on the bandwagon. The reason?  The limited content available. Currently only 5 TV shows and about 2000 music videos are available at about $1.99 each via iTunes.

Itunes_9But since iPods and iTunes are rapidly becoming the music delivery system of choice, why aren't record labels rushing to provide video clips for sale alongside the music.  Can you imagine how many tens of thousands of hours of concert, music video, and interview footage lies gathering dust in record label and management vaults?  And isn't this a fabulous chance to finally make some money from this footage and feed the fan base with just a little bit of cheap editing to fit the new format?

But as is too often the case, labels appear slow to react rather than embracing a new way to monetize existing product.  This is an opportunity that shouldn't be missed.

Read the full a LA Times article here.


Coalition of Independent Music Stores' Top 200 for Week Ending 10-16-05

Cims_27 Label Pos. Artist  |   Title

ATO 1 MY MORNING JACK|Z

EPIT 2 DANGER DOOM|MOUSE & THE MASK

EPIC 3 APPLE*FIONA|EXTRAORDINARY MACH

WAR 4 YOUNG*NEIL|PRAIRIE WIND

EPIC 5 FRANZ FERDINAND|YOU COULD HAVE

RHMS 6 ATMOSPHERE|YOU CANT IMAGINE HO

ATLG 7 DEATH CAB FOR C|PLANS

AANC 8 BROKEN SOCIAL S|BROKEN SOCIAL

DEF 9 WEST*KANYE|LATE REGISTRATION

LHWY 10 ADAMS*RYAN|JACKSONVILLE CITY N

GEFN 11 SIGUR ROS|TAKK

ROAD 12 NICKELBACK|ALL THE RIGHT REASO

BNTE 13 MONK/COLTRANE|THELONIOUS MONK

RCA 14 GRAY*DAVID|LIFE IN SLOW MOTION

UNIV 15 MARLEY*DAMIAN|WELCOME TO JAMRO

J 16 KEYS*ALICIA|UNPLUGGED

WNDK 17 SEVENDUST|NEXT

WAR 18 STORY OF THE YE|IN THE WAKE OF

VFOR 19 TEDESCHI*SUSAN|HOPE & DESIRE

OVCT 20 IRON & WINE/CAL|IN THE REINS

WAR 21 DISTURBED|TEN THOUSAND FISTS

SUBP 22 WOLF PARADE|APOLOGIES TO THE Q

ANIT 23 BLACKALICIOUS|CRAFT

KILL 23 DEERHOOF|RUNNERS FOUR

IDER 25 BROWNE*JACKSON|VOL. 1-SOLO ACO

Continue reading "Coalition of Independent Music Stores' Top 200 for Week Ending 10-16-05" »


JASON FLOM TO HEAD VIRGIN

The rumor mill can finally take a day off.

Jason Flom  who just weeks ago was ousted from his post atop Atlantic will now head a floundering Virgin America Records according to numerous sources. Virgin head Matt Serletic has...exited the building.

We admit that we had publicly hoped that Flom would use his considerable smarts to head an Indy or start-up and show 'em all that things need to be done differently these days.  But the lure of a private jet and big money (like he needs more money) seems to have won out.

Perhaps it is the chance to work with developing talent like the Rolling Stones or cutting edge artists like Gorillaz.


Fuse Goes Interactive With SMS TV Hybrid

Fuse_3According to Digital Music News, "Upstart music video channel Fuse, owned by Cablevision, recently debuted a slate of shows that revolve around text-messaging. The programs - "Perfect Pair," "Heavy Texting" and "Dumped" - all focus on personal relationships, and create a game-like way for fans to test just how compatible they are with their mates. Some messages and responses will show up alongside the music video programming, keeping viewers glued to the action..."

"The highly interactive approach is designed to fit into the lifestyle of the typical Fuse viewer...For Cablevision, the text-to-TV strategy is part of a larger move towards new television formats..."


Indy Artist Booking Site ProTourOnline Launches

Ca_6

CelebrityAccess.com has launched ProTourOnline.com (PTO) a proprietary on-line database which enables working musicans to identify and communicate with all types of venues under 3,000 seats in the US and Canada. PTO gives developing artists that are self-booked and desire to grow more regionally or nationally the opportunity do so in a coordinated and professional approach.

PTO's comprehensive search features help artists identify the right venue for the right situation. Ptobannersmall Using the site's on-line tools, Electronic Press Kits (EPK) provided by Sonicbids may be sent directly to the venue's talent buying staff. Follow-up is made easy with profiles on each venue including capacity, direct dial phone numbers and addresses for the building's talent buyers.

PTO also provides artists with the largest listing of national tour dates, enabling them to identify potential venue availability, see what kinds of artists they are booking and submit themselves for consideration. As they book their tour, the artists may enter their tour dates into PTO's online system. The artist's tour dates will then be included in our world-wide tour date database for millions of people to see on MTV, VH1, CMT, Billboard, CelebrityAccess and MusicToday websites.

ProTourOnline.com will provide its members with:

- Database of 5,000 North American Venue profiles under 3,000 seats updated daily

- Ability to search for Venues by capacity, age restrictions, location and many other criteria

- Ability to email Sonicbids EPKs to venue talent buyers

- Complete venue talent buyer profiles, including: addresses, direct dial phone numbers, and staff listings

- The largest listing of North American Tour Dates for venues of all capacities

- Posting Boards for talent buyers and artists

- Free six month subscription to Sonicbids where artists can create a professional EPK!

- Up-to-the-moment Industry News

Learn more here.


An Entire Week Of Neil Young On Conan

CelebrityAccess MediaWire - Following on the heels of Late Night with Conan O'Brien's recent groundbreaking show that hosted U2 as its sole guest, Neil Young will be the show's musical guest for the entire week of November 1-4. "I wanted two solid months of Neil Young, but he told me it was, quote, 'getting creepy,'" quipped O'Brien. 

In its almost 10-year run, Late Night with Conan O'Brien has hosted the network television debuts Radiohead, Green Day, Sheryl Crow, Coldplay, No Doubt and Wilco among many others.


Japanese Labels Reissue CD's In LP Like Sleeves

Elvispresleyelvispapersleev336873Leave it to the Japanese to find an interesting new way to market music to aging baby boomers nostalgic for the vinyl and those cardboard covers that folks used to wear out reading over and over again while the record played.

In what is dubbed as the "paper sleeve campaign", Japanese labels are re-issuing the likes of Elvis and Bruce Springsteen as CD's packaged in colorful cardboard sleeves.  Often packaged as boxed sets, they give consumers yet another reason to buy the same piece of music again (vinyl), again (cassette), again (DVD), again (DVD plus, Dual Disc or enhanced CD) and again (paper sleeve CD). 

Appealing to the boomer marketplace (77 million and 27.5% of the marketplace according to The Met Life Mature market Institute) is something that US labels seem to do only as an afterthought.  This generation, who has more money than time, still buys CD's and is learning about legal downloads even as the teens continue to steal tracks online and trade copies with friends.


Tiny KEXP And Others Use Technology To Broaden Audience And Become Infleuncial Music Gatekeepers

A recent AP article that ran in the Seattle Post Intelligencer and elsewhere shows how the internet and new technologies are transforming a few low powered FM broadcasters into national and international music taste makers. The trend also has the potential to transform non-commercial broadcasting as well as encourage and reward innovative programming.

Kexp_mobile_1Most are familiar with the growing influence of KCRW located just outside of LA but few know about the influence of tiny 3300 watt KEXP in Tacoma, Washington.

"...With a very few other like-minded stations, it's enjoying a word-of-mouth-fueled popularity boom even as Americans in general are tuning in less - two hours a week less than they were in 1998, according to Arbitron, according to AP.

"Clearly, what has driven the success of these stations is what's been happening in commercial radio: The playlists have gotten narrower and narrower and the commercial loads have gotten heavier," says Roger LaMay, general manager of noncommercial WXPN in Philadelphia. "Increasingly, the artists turn to these stations because it's the only place they can get their music played. We look for artists and embrace them."

"In spring 2004, about 26,000 people listened to KEXP online every week - more than any other Kexplogoradio  station in the country, according to Arbitron's now-defunct Internet broadcasting service. This year, that number has jumped to 50,000, with large clusters of listeners in New York, where KEXP broadcasts live twice a year; Chicago; San Francisco; and Washington, D.C. Listeners are giving the nonprofit station a projected $1.7 million this year, nearly $1 million more than they gave in 2003."

"WXPN, home to the popularly syndicated World Cafe program, has roughly doubled the money it raises from listeners in the past few years. Minnesota Public Radio recently launched a new Twin Cities station called The Current, patterned after KEXP, WXPN and KCRW in Santa Monica, Calif..."

"...They're proving, if people would really look, that listeners want compelling music, that they'll buy it, that they'll support it," said Steve Nice, who represents the band Idlewild..."

"At KEXP, the DJs choose what they play, with a few limitations: Certain bands are in rotation, and a local band must be played once an hour at minimum..".

Unlike many internet radio staions who often play music randomly with little if any talk, KEXP acts as an active music gatekeeper and educator.  "...It's all about creating context for the music," says afternoon host Kevin Cole..."Take Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - if you can mix that into some early Talking Heads, you can see, 'Oh yeah, that's what's going on here..."

And contuing there status as innovators KEXP is also amoung the early adopters of radio via cell phone technologies and podcasting.

Read the full article here.


New Blog The Philoneist Files Chronicles How New Technologies Can Benefit Individuals

We've been enjoying reading the new blog The Philoneist Files which chronicles breaking news stories about innovations in science, technology, and society from an array of internet sources.

Philoneist Files’ mission is to highlight creative developments with the potential to empower readers' lives through augmenting their knowledge, advancing the integration and speed of their communications, and/or for the benefit of their personal enjoyment.  The blog aggregates content that is primarily concerned about features and functions, not product announcements and reviews. 

Check out The Philoneist Files here.


DIGITAL MUSIC NEWS - WEEK IN REVIEW

  • Ipodvideo_1The biggest news this week came out of San Jose, where Apple chief Steve Jobs unveiled a video-enabled iPod. That was accompanied by the release of iTunes 6, which offers music video, television, and short film content, adding yet another variation to the iPod+iTunes combination. Meanwhile, the company also posted record quarterly revenues and earnings.
  • Earlier in the week, RealNetworks and Microsoft finalized a long-standing antitrust dispute. As part of the out-of-court settlement, Microsoft agreed to pay RealNetworks $761 million in the form of cash and promotional assets.
  • Meanwhile, Sony BMG CEO Andrew Lack came under fire, as Bertelsmann appeared to be pushing for a replacement. Sony chairman Howard Stringer defended Lack.
  • Mtvuber_logo_beta_1 MTV was also quite active this week. The Viacom-owned property launched mtvU Uber, a broadband network geared towards a college audience. And on Thursday, the company announced the acquisition of iFilm for $49 million.
  • Yahoopod_2Elsewhere, Yahoo became the latest to jump into podcasting with a beta release.
  • Across the pond, the European Commission issued its recommendation for a pan-European licensing process, though the biggest work still lies ahead.
  • And the BPI reported an increase in both physical and digital formats for the latest quarter.
  • And further east, Japanese carrier KDDI reported its 20 millionth full-song, over-the-air download. That easily trumps results from other services.

From Digital Music News


iRadio Will Distribute Hundreds Of Free Music Stations Via Cell

Motorolalogo_3Watch out commercial radio and satellite broadcasters, the Internet radio revolution is about to go portable as predicted via the cell phone. The Motorola iRadio service is expected to launch during the first quarter of 2006 and is being previewed at a music consumer show next week in NYC.

The iRadio service's aim (in addition to making money) is to transform radio by Iradio_3making it more mobile and self-expressive. The service will offer hundreds of channels of personalized commercial-free music and talk. Through the iRadio Get Heard Network, independent  labels and artists will have the ability to create their own radio stations that will be made available to broadcast nationwide. Internet based broadcasters will also now have the ability to extend their services to the places where people listen to music the most like in the car or jogging.

You can take a peak at the service here

The pros will argue that it's going to be 1057 channels and nothings on. But certainly some broadcasts will become trusted and thus powerful gatekeepers like the album rock DJ who was once our arbiter of cool.  And won't it be sublime for the kid that wants 24 hours a day of Sublime? 


Sanford U Students To Get Free Yahoo! Music Unimited

According to HitsDailyDouble.com, "Yahoo! Music and Stanford University have announced plans to Yahoomusiclogos_11 offer students free access to the Yahoo! Music Unlimited subscription service...(the deal)enables subscribers to listen to commercial-free Internet radio stations; share music with other subscribers by using Yahoo! Messenger; transfer as many tracks as they want onto compatible portable devices; ...to buy a song, which allows students to keep it after their Yahoo! subscription ends, will cost 79 cents, reduced from the 99-cent non-subscription rate. The program—which launches October 18—is expected to last one year..."


CD Club Columbia House Closes

Surprise, surprise! Columbia House  is shuttering it's music club to concentrate on it's mail order DVD club.  Artists and managers often felt ripped off by the lower royalties paid and and questioned if the club's discount pricing didn't add to the devaluation of CD's.  Will the BMG club be next?


Clear Channel Radio Fires Only Two After Payola Probe

NY State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s radio payola probe continues, but Clear Channel announced it has fired two employees following an internal investigation. Industry insiders believe it is unlikely Clearchannel300_14that Clear Channel’s would have fired anyone without the Spitzer investigation. They also speculate that given the scope of the investigation, the size of Clear Channels staff, and the fact that many possibly illegal practices were widespread throughout the industry, only two firings is either just an initial salvo or more likely an attempt to take as little action as possible while appearing to put the situation behind them. 

Either way with Indy labels still claiming limited access to programmers has much actually changed or has the payola game just gotten more sophisticated or gone back underground?

Read the LA Times story on the firings here.