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Record Label Rule Book Gets Startups No Where

image from baseball-rules.com We're learning something important about music startups. If a company is cool and people like it, there's a good chance that they're either getting sued or working their way up the magical list.

Grooveshark is a perfect example of this. More and more people are getting turned onto the site because the interface is pretty and the user experience is great. Is it the best music service?

No. But it's the best at what it does.1

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Effortlessness Is The Enemy of Cloud-Based Music.

If you like, just skip ahead and read my latest MTT essay here.

image from photo.goodreads.com Early in January, I did a rather extensive review of Thumbplay Music. In it, I suggested features that were missing from the cloud-based music service. Soon thereafter, I was in a book store and I started flipping through The Upside of Irrationality by Dan Ariely. One chapter called The IKEA Effect caught my eye and I started reading it. In short, the chapter is about how effort impacts the way we value things. The harder we work to get something, the higher we tend to value it. This plays out in all aspects of our lives from chasing partners to cooking food.

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Justin Bieber's Manager Explains "Hand To Hand Combat" Approach To Singer's Success (Video)

image from images2.fanpop.com After being told that there was "no format" that would play Justin Bieber on the radio, manager Scooter Braun decided "hand-to-hand combat" was his only option and took the young singer to stations across the country.  "There's not a DJ who can say they haven't met Justin Bieber," says Braun. long the way Beiber tweeted fans who swamped the stations at each stop. Watch the video:

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BuzzDeck – Social Analytics For Bands & Managers

3453 BuzzDeck is a music analytics tool developed by AWAL, a London-based music distributor. It's been floating around for a couple months now.

The service enables artists and their managers to track everything from their Twitter followers to who is watching their videos online. All of this info is pulled into a dashboard wherein the activity across networks can be compared and contrasted. Sixteen-year-old ukulele player, Misty Miller, has found using the service fascinating. It shows she has gained fans all over the world. Take a look:

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Duct Tape – Proof Music Can Be Made With Anything

Dsede3 Real men (and women) don't need instruments to make music.

Below is a fantastic and well-produced gizmo-jam session. Everything makes noise. Done right, it can sound beautiful.

Next time you're getting tired of looking at the guitar in the corner, maybe you should raid for kitchen for instruments.

You'd be surprised how it will sound when it all comes together. Take a look:

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Photo: T-Pain Gets A Facebook Tatoo

image from idolator.com "I get a tatt every time I come to Hawaii", T-Pain tweeted showing off an arm which now reads: "You don't have to 'like' me" with the Facebook "like" button. Acknowledging that Facebook could stumble and render his tatt as obsolete as an old girlfriend's name, he tweeted "I think this ones pretty sweet, unless facebook shuts down soon 0_o." 

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EMI and Spotify – Deal or No Deal? – It’s Close

image from assets.gearlive.com Reports indicate that Spotify is close to signing a deal with EMI. If a contract is signed, it will give the company an additional toehold in their quest to launch in the US. Two weeks ago, the company landed a deal with Sony Music. Taken together, Sony and EMI represent a 37% market share of music sales in the US.

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Music Biz News: Doug Morris, Industry Greed, Digital Locks, 100K U.S. P2P Users Sued, Rdio $'s & More

  • Sony backs Doug Morris to show music industry he's a long-player - Universal's chairman is widely seen as a safe pair of hands - but can he revitalise Sony Music's fortunes? Opinion is divided. (Guardian)
  • Greed is Achilles’ heel of music industry. (DailyAztec)
  • Canadians May Adopt U.S.- Style Ban On Breaking ‘Digital Locks’ (paidContent)

Hypebot Favicon More Music Industry News & Commentary:

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Rewind – The Music Industry's Week In Review: MIDEM, MySpace, Google, ReverbNation & More

  • Hypebot gives an overview of trends and thoughts on MIDEM.
  • The decline of MySpace is wonderful for musicians. Here's why.
  • Mark Mulligan argues that at this point digital music has failed.
  • ReverbNation links got banned accidently in Facebook for a day.

image from www.hypebot.com More Rewind:

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HOW TO: Create Your Own Vintage Music Video

Dfde There's a new 8mm Vintage Camera iPhone app out now. It's a simple and easy way to create music videos with a retro style to them. For $1.99, the app lets users add frame jitters, dust and scratches, retro colors, and light leaks that can be activated during recording. Our friend Voyno over at The New Rockstar Philosophy went as far as creating a music video for his group. The result is rather convincing and fun. If you have an iPhone and a stand, this could be a nice weekend project. Add in some old-school decorations and clothes, and your fans will be convinced that you're rocking out in a different era. Take a look:

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Rapper Hit By Ice Cream Truck, Goes Viral Twice

Ew An obscure rapper named Optimo 55 Souf decided to dance into traffic during a DIY music video shoot for his new song. Midway into the road, he got hit by an ice cream truck. Shortly thereafter, the video got posted on YouTube and went viral. Comedian Daniel Tosh, host of Tosh.0 on Comedy Central, saw the video, reached out to the rapper, and helped him film a professional music video for his song "I'm Gipper" on the show. The song has since skyrocketed up the iTunes hip-hop singles chart to #15.

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Facebook's ReverbNation Block Was Just "A Mistake", But Serves As Reminder Of Larger Issue

image from www.norman.k12.ok.us Yesterday, ReverbNation told its tens of thousands of active artist users that Facebook had disabled RN links on their site. "This was a mistake in one of our automated systems for preventing spam," a Facebook spokesperson told Hypebot and by late in the day, the problem had been fixed. But the incident serves as a reminder of a hazard that accompanies the incredible potential of interconnected marketing - lack of control.

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Sonicbids Adds Its Own Facebook Profile Builder Plus A Video Tour

image from www.themillstreet.com RootMusic is getting kudos for its program that creates great looking Facebook Profiles and ReverbNation has a popular tool that makes it  even easier by pulling from assets already stored in its system.  Now Sonicbids has added a Profile builder with a feature that encourages fans to "Like" an artist:

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It’s Official: First Master Degree In Beatles Awarded

image from www.breakingnewsweek.com Back in 2009, Liverpool Hope University launched a Master Of Arts course, titled The Beatles – Popular Music and Society.

A Canadian woman has become the first person to graduate with the degree. In the course, Mary-Lu Zahalan-Kennedy told the BBC that she studied, "how The Beatles came to be. What the political and social climate was and the cultural aspects that helped to facilitate an environment where The Beatles' could happen."

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Music Biz News: Midem Stats, iTunes Upgrade, Mobile Apps Soar, Napster Court Loss & More

  • Music Venture Rdio Gets Funded By Mangrove Capital. (PaidContent
  • MIDEM Stats: Attendance fell 4.9% despite a 30% rise in participants from the digital and music tech sector.  Attendance form publishers was also up, but it was not enough to stem the ongoing decline in label attendance.
  • On Thursday, Apple released an upgrade to iTunes. Version 0.1.2 is a stability and performance update and adds support for syncing “with iPhone 4 (CDMA model).” The iPhone debuts on Verizon February 10.
  • Mobile apps made more than digital music last year. (Telegraph, Gartner)

6a00d83451b36c69e20133f58067d2970b-800wi More Music Industry News & Commentary:

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7 Terrible Things Google Still Doesn't Censor

image from 4.bp.blogspot.comWith Google now censoring terms like “BitTorrent” and “RapidShare” from their Autocomplete service, it’s important to put this move into context. What terms doesn’t Google filter? Big Content has pressured Google into taking a stance against piracy, but there are many things that the company is still mute about.

And in reality, the things that Google doesn’t filter are far, far worse than piracy.

"BitTorrent" is taboo, but child kidnapping? Not so much. Suddenly, making it harder for kids to find torrents seems like a sad victory for the RIAA. See below:

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Why You May Want To Wait Before Getting An iPad To Take Payments At Merchandise Table

image from www.textually.org Thinking about using an iPhone or iPad to process credit card payments at your merchandise table? After all, Intuit and others have created very affordable systems and are even giving away the card scanner that powers them. But you may want to wait a few months before investing hundred of dollars in an iPad or iPhone.

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HOW TO: Give Fans Control of an Album Release

image from smsa.org.uk Say you're a band from Australia and you have a new album coming out. It's done. You've picked a release date, but it's not really set in stone. There's a tour coming up through the US in April and that seemed like the best time to release it. No point in touring unless you can put an album in people's hands.

Here's the catch: you have fans all around the world and it would be unfair to make them wait to hear the music just because it happened to line-up with tour dates that they can't attend.

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#MIDEM Hot Topics: The Cloud, Music Tech And The One That Just Won't Go Away... Control

image from www.hype33.com I just got back from Midem 2011 and will post some very informative presentations in the coming days. While there were no game changing announcements, music in the cloud - streaming, lockers, mobile - was on everyone's lips.  It's clearly what fans want and the assembled companies appeared intent on giving it to them. Sadly, however, the debate still continues over how to make more money from the cloud. If I could send a single message to the music industry, it would be:

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Why The Decline of MySpace Is Great For Musicians

This post is by Robin Davey of The Hoax and The Bastard Fairies.  Interview.

image from www.sometimestruthhurts.com Before you could say "We're big on Myspace", it seems the foundations of this once burgeoning oasis of digital discovery have quickly crumbled. These days, it actually closer resembles an online Salton Sea.

In retrospect and with hindsight we have to ask ourselves – did we ever really need MySpace?

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Using Blogger Motivations To Drive Fan Connections

image from www.cssreflex.com If you're attempting to get a blogger to write about your band, it's important to understand their motivations for doing so. How can you better align your needs with their drive? Over at Music Think Tank, Ty White writes about what motivates bloggers to write and how artists can empower them to spread their word. How will you use blogger motivations to drive fan connections?


Music Biz News: ReverbNation Links Disabled, Live Nation To Settle Lawsuit, Coachella Sells Out & More

  • This AM, ReverbNation tweeted, "Facebook has disabled ReverbNation links on their site. We are investigating & apologize for the trouble! Stay tuned." This is probably just a glitch. However, Facebook is getting very bullish lately and making efforts to decrease platform spam from apps.
  • Coachella Completely Sold Out (No Pun Intended) (BayCitizen)
  • Live Nation to Pay $22.3 Million to Settle Class Action Suit Against Ticketmaster (BillboardThe issue is transparency of ticket charges, and the problem still exists.

6a00d83451b36c69e20133f58067d2970b-800wi More News & Commentary:

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HOW TO: Create A Targeted, Cute Viral Music Video

image from laughingsquid.com Marketing music is never easy. It's a constant challenge. Do you try and reach a new fans or do you create something your fans are sure to love, hoping it will spread? Who are you targeting?

In this case, cat lovers. That's who.

The Los Angeles indie trio band Best Coast has created a charming music video that gives a nod to people that love cats.

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