PreDaTor News: RIAA Helps Small Webcasters, UMG Gives Artists a Break on Royalties, New Edition is Back and more...
We salute the National Breast Cancer Awareness Month Campaign
providing information on its Web site, www.nbcam.org.
The RIAA has moved to help small Webcasters by authorizing labels and owners
of recording copyrights to accept the minimum annual payment of $500 for
digital performance royalties, following the Senate's unexpected failure to
act on legislation cutting those Webcasters-who make less than $1 million
annually-some much needed slack. The Senate may reconsider action when it
returns from its break after the November elections.
Speaking of royalties, Universal Music Group will discontinue certain
deductions from royalties in order to attract greater cooperation from
artists in its online music businesses. The move, which applies to sales of
digital downloads and subscription services, is being hailed as a boon to
using downloads to drive album sales; BMG, Warner Music Group, and EMI are
said to be similarly reviewing their policies.
In other record company news, industry veteran Steve Backer, most recently
executive VP of West Coast creative for EMI Music Publishing, will be GM of
V2 Records' U.S. division, reporting to president Andy Gershon. This follows
a restructuring at V2 Records North America involving the dismissal of
almost half of its New York staff.
In tech developments, DataPlay Inc., which had just succeeded in releasing
the first titles in its disc-size format, has now filed for bankruptcy after
failing to obtain needed financing. Jukebox manufacturer Ecast Inc., which
is acquiring the RioPort download services provider, has secured licensing
with DreamWorks Records for its content in Ecast Internet-enabled jukeboxes
in public venues. Virgin Records America and New York mastering studio
Sterling Sound have joined with Boston's DMOD Inc. to license a secure
peer-to-peer Internet technology permitting record company executives to
monitor albums in development anywhere in the world via the Internet-thereby
speeding up the record production process.
Listen.com has launched Version 2.0 of its Rhapsody subscription service,
and it goes beyond on-demand streaming and Internet radio programming to
include burning of tracks-at 99 cents apiece--from UMG and WMG, along with
TVT, Sanctuary, and 16 more indie labels. The service, which is the only one
offering content from all five majors, will also be accessible now from any
PC. Meanwhile, Sirius Satellite Radio stock jumped 57% following a $1.2
In artist news, mid-'80s r&b supergroup New Edition has reformed, with a new
album due from Sean "P. Didd" Combs' Bad Boy Records next spring. The group,
which disbanded in 1989 (but briefly regrouped in 1996), includes Ricky
Bell, Michael Bivins, Ronnie DeVoe, Johnny Gill, and Ralph Tresvant-but not
original member Bobby Brown.
Alanis Morissette and Maverick Recording Co are proud to announce " Feast of Scraps" presale.
It will be available in store 12/10. This very special package will include a DVD 2.5 hours,
9 song CD (8 new songs), personal and behind the scenes footage, 3 video vignettes of under rug swept.
Both CD and DVD have been enhanced with links to more Alanis content.
You can currently pre order this on Amazon.com
The Rolling Stones, Lenny Kravitz, Blink-182, 'N Sync, Beyonce Knowles, and
Pink have joined in the campaign against Internet music piracy being
conducted by the MUSIC (Music United for Strong Internet Copyright)
Coalition, which commenced last month with full-page ads in major newspapers
and is expanding with TV and Internet ads.
Finally, the great Grand Ole Opry dobro player Bashful Brother Oswald Kirby,
who played with Roy Acuff's Smoky Mountain Boys for more than 50 years, is
dead at 90. Gone, too, is Derek Bell, who played harp, oboe, cor anglais,
hammered dulcimer, and keyboards with the legendary Irish group the
Chieftains, at 66.