Saturday, October 31, 2009

Foo Fighters Facebook Live Performance

Foo Fighters recently streamed a live studio performance over Facebook. The concert was only viewable by Facebook members. Of course, now it is available to view all over the internet, as some people recorded it.
I think this is an interesting marketing plan. Recently there have been a lot of free concerts and digital downloads being offered by artists. U2 recently streamed one of their performances, NIN and Jane's Addiction had the free download of NIN|Ja as well. In the NIN|Ja case, I believe that you had to give out your email address in order to obtain a link to the download. This gave them an opportunity to add people to their mailing lists, I'm sure they got a lot of people to do that as well.
By giving the fans something for free once in awhile, it makes them crave more. Eventually, one would hope that this would lead to a purchase, or the attending of a live concert. You cannot pirate the feel of a live concert at least. There is also the strange, naturally occurring phenomenon of people paying $20.00 for a T-Shirt at these events as well!
There was not much information available at the time of this posting as to how this performance came about. The only information I have obtained to so far is that Foo Fighters and their reps approached Facebook first. I am unsure if there were additional parties involved or if there was any sort of product placement during the performance. I will update or post again if I do find more information. From what has been said so far, this was mainly meant to be a "thank you" message to the fans. It was a way that the band could give back for the continued support of their fan base.

- Derek Jenkins

Friday, October 30, 2009

Live Nation Opens Web Platform To Artists & Fans

The article I chose to discuss deals with Live Nation. They've made changes to their website that will place more of their content in the hands of the fans & artists. Some of the new features that are now available are: The ability for artists & fans to upload their own concerts to be searched along live nation events, fan-generated content modules (concert/artist wiki pages, concert reviews & integrated twitter streams), Facebook connect & a comprehensive listing of concerts & ticket inventory.

Personally I think that this is a good move for Live Nation. As the largest producer of concerts in the world, a move like this cements this position. It gives fans more of a chance to be involved, as well as a chance for artists to be more involved. It gives smaller venues a chance to be seen on the Live Nation website, as well as smaller acts. For Live Nation, this is also a bold move. Most competitors will never advertise anything run by their competition. I see nothing but good coming out of this for everyone involved.

-Marcus Hall


a2f2a is a new blog that has been launched by Billy Bragg, a UK artist. The blog aims to bridge the gap between artists and fans (artists2fans2artists) and help culture honest discussion about the music industry between the business's two most important factors; that is of course, the artists and the fans. The first subject to be presented has been payment to artists, with many agreeing that directly paying an artist may be the best route.
I don't know how to feel about the whole direct payment thing (as an artist, I 100% agree, but as a Junior who has sunk thousands upon thousands into a music business degree, this is a bit of a scary proposition.) I do think that the entire basis for the blog, and it's unique format will make for some new ideas in music marketing, and it will be coming from a very grassroots forum.
-Eric Hart

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Google Music Launches

Google is obviously directly challenging Apple’s iTunes. Although iTunes currently offers over 11 million songs, it requires the installation of free software and the opening of an account to function. If Google is successful in combining its normal ease of search to music retailing, it could take a slice out of Apple’s business.

Google users who put the name of a song into the search engine will get, as the top result, information about the musician and an opportunity to stream the song from one of two services, Lala and MySpace Music. People who click on that link will usually get a pop-up window that allows them to play the full song once, for free, along with a link to buy the song….Entering an album name or band name into Google results in similar free listening opportunities.

The service could totally change how people look for music online. Up until now, when you search for music on Google it just brings up links to Wikipedia, random ad-filled lyrics sites and, in some cases, YouTube videos. But it usually took a few hops across the Web to actually sample a song. Not anymore. (It will be interesting to see, in this new environment, whether the music labels are truly comfortable with allowing all these free streams on Google.)

-Woody Ellis

Google Closes the Loop on Music Search

Last week, my post briefly discussed the new feature in Google's search engine. After making their public announcement yesterday, Google has provided more details on this new function. First, Google's service operates with music services such as: imeem, Lala, Myspace's recently-acquired iLike, Pandora and Rhapsody. Through Google's regular search box, a user can search for any artist, album, or any song. Users will be able to preview the results from a 30 second music sample however, they are working towards full track coverage. The most interesting aspect of the this music search service is the agreement Google has with its partnering companies. "No money changes hands between Google and its partners as part of this deal; its a straight trade between the services, which want traffic, and Google, which wants to make its search function more useful to music fans." Most importantly, the labels like this new service because it will direct users to toward non-infringing , royalty-paying services. In my opinion, this service is a promising solution to combat piracy because this feature allows users to find music easily. Even if the user can not remember the name of the artist or song, one can search by lyrics. Ultimately, this service will be connecting more music enthusiasts with old, current and new artists in a proper marketing manner. "With the strength of Google’s search algorithms and their music search partners’ efforts to increase the comprehensiveness of their music content, their on track to answer more of your rhymes with the right rhythms.”

-Ryan Dolan

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Win Tickets To See The Rocket Summer

Yet another way for bands to gain subscribers to their mailing lists, The Rocket Summer is having a contest to win tickets to their tour with Forever The Sickest Kids and Sing It Loud. All you have to do is enter your email address, home address, birthdate, gender, and location, and you're entered into the contest. Simple as that! It also is a way to gain statistical data surrounding the band regarding gender, age, and location of their fans.

This knowledge will also help management of the band determine where their market is strongest, the average age of the fans, and the male to female ratio. This information can help management strengthen its weaker areas, while also creating marketing strategies geared towards their demographic.

Bands are allotted a certain number of guest list spots and complimentary tickets at each show, so in a sense the prize is free for them. Also, all of their fans who want a guarantee ticket to the show will purchase one ahead of time anyways, so if they win, they might bring a friend along. Those who are hesitant about purchasing a ticket will enter the contest and if they win, they will go and possibly be more likely to actually purchase tickets to the next tour or purchase merchandise while at the show.

Maybe the band should throw in a meet and greet to spice up the contest a little more.

~Laurel Zevitz

Monday, October 26, 2009

Twilight Mall Tour

I found another article regarding the release of Twilight. The stars of the movie will be embarking on a mall tour across the country. Another interesting part is that the mall tour will feature artists from the Twilight soundtrack.

"Bands featured on the “New Moon” soundtrack will join the tour at select locations, with Death Cab For Cutie, Anya Marina, Sea Wolf and Band of Skulls scheduled to perform at the November 6 event, which is open to the public."

I think this is a great way to campaign not only the soundtrack and movie, but also the artists. Consumers that may not regularly listen to these bands will get to experience a live performance. People interested will have to sign up at select Hot Topic stores, and Nordstroms, which will allow the artists and there labels to record important information about new demographics.

- Valerie South

Little Wayne Cops Plea Deal

Over two years ago, rapper Lil Wayne was arrested in New York on a gun possession charge. This past Thursday, October 22, he pleaded guilty to the charge. He will receive a one year sentence a one year sentence, and likely serve 8-10 months. The gun laws in New York are particularly strict, which is why the sentence is so harsh.

Wayne joins fellow rapper, T.I., who is also spending a year in prison for gun charges. And if Wayne follows T.I.'s example, he can make jail one hell of a good P.R. campaign. T.I.'s pre-jail record, Paper Trail, scored the rapper two #1 singles, and he even has a movie coming out while he's incarcerated.

With Wayne's reputation as a prolific artist, I don't doubt that he will be releasing a wealth of new material leading up to, and during the time that he's away. Brian 'Baby' and Ronald 'Slim' Williams, CEOs of Cash Money Records, said that they would stand behind their artist and longtime friend.

The sentencing will take place in February

Alex Katz

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mojo Nixon Results

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about the musician Mojo Nixon. He was releasing an album full of b sides and unreleased tracks. He was releasing this album for free exclusively through Amazon. He was also going to allow for his entire catalog for free for a limited time. The promotion is almost over and it has been incredibly successful. So far there have been over 1 million tracks downloaded. Mojo has done quite a bit of promotion for the release through his satelite radio broadcasts but the response was more than anyone predicted.
When I initially read this article I didn't think it would be this successful. There are still a few days left of the promotion and it will be interesting to see the final totals of this promotion, but I don't know if this has actually done anything for the parties involved. I'm sure Amazon has had a few increased sales, but other than that there seems to be no benefits. I don't see any sort of business model that based off of this, and it seems like this just might be a case of someone doing a benevolent act.
The followup article can bee seen here:

The Gift of Music according to Facebook

Facebook is now adding music to their site through LaLa. Now one can purchase songs for friends through the music store which offers 8 million songs; web songs being 1 credit each and full down loadable and digital rights management-free MP3s are 9 credits each. Users can sign up using Facebook Connect or use it if they have an existing account with LaLa. One can now play their web songs and MP3s from and their Facebook news feed and wall as much as they like. People downloading MP3s can also download their songs and use the gift on other music players like ITunes and Windows Media Player. Facebook users who are able to see the music gift can play the song through full once, and after that can only play 30 seconds of the clip.
This is a whole new outlet to promote artists and songs through an already increasing popular social network. This is the best of both worlds, because not only can one use the songs for enjoyment on media players, I-Pods, etc., but one also can share these songs with their friends, thus promoting through word of mouth. It is a way to make a profit by giving the gift of music. The value is built in to the availability and uses of these web songs and MP3s. It is a very wise move to incorporate music in this social network, seeing how the most powerful form of advertising is through word of mouth. Other people who didn't even receive the music as a gift can still preview the music of other friends in their network. It's genius and I think it should gain a lot of ground in the following months.

By: Andre Rodriguez

Spike Jonze Explains His Kanye West Mini-Movie, ‘We Were Once a Fairytale’ is only one of many sites that post videos or links to tracks that have been leaked on the internet. Just like illegal downloads, the spread of leaked videos/songs is hard to control, and many people get to see or hear this stuff without permission before they are taken down because of legal action. Kanye West teamed up with Spike Jonze to make a short film that would eventually be released onto iTunes and made available for digital purpose. However, that film was leaked before it was ready to be released. Unfortunately for Spike Jonze, people got to view the film for free, but he realized that maybe their experiment with digital film release on iTunes might not be as successful as they were hoping it would be. Spike Jonze said of his digital release strategy, "I don’t actually know if that makes any business sense at all, because once it’s out there, it’s out there.” The same goes for leaked music. Once a new song has been leaked, it's already out there in the cyber world and there is really nothing you can do about it. It can be taken down until the proper date, but there are still people out there with the song and the file, and can still illegally spread it around. I know that Spike Jonze started to doubt the concept of short film digital release on iTunes, but I don't think that it should be out of the question. Music is leaked, and still for sale digitally iTunes. Why not do the same for short film? There will always be people in the cyber world who will get their music and film for free, but there is still a market out there of people who buy their music and films. May as well put the efforts out and see what you can still get than just get nothing at all.

-Lyndsie Klott

CMJ Music Marathon

The CMJ Music Marathon is part of an annual showcase of music and film held in famous New York City venues. For the past 29 years, the event has been host to a wide array of performers from Johnny Cash to Modest Mouse, Sonic Youth to Regina Spektor, and David Byrne to Santogold. While its earlier events have included underground hip hop, CMJ has traditionally placed its focus towards rock musicians, and in the past few years predominantly on indie rock. This year, however, there was a large attempt to incorporate a bigger selection of rap and hip hop into the marathon.

The article that I read from the New York Times discussed the various issues that came up with many of the hip hop artists that performed (or were scheduled to perform) at CMJ. Reception from the audience was less than accepting, and multiple artists no-showed the event for various reasons. The idea of widening fan bases and exposing artists to new demographics is undoubtedly an intelligent one, but in this case, it seems as though that there was insufficient (or incorrect) research performed in order to support pushing as many hip hop acts as were presented.

This article essentially tells me to not be overambitious in attempting to broaden the fanbase of an artist, or to make an event with a defined audience more appealing to people with different tastes. Here is the NY Times article and the CMJ Music Marathon page.

Hip-Hop at CMJ, All Cities and Types

CMJ Music Marathon

-Bill Ross

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Four Track for iPhone

Four Track is a mulitrack audio recording app for Apple's iPhone. According to the developer's website, it can record audio that is on par with CD quality sound. Interestingly, a band called "The 88" from Los Angeles recorded a song with this application. There is a link to a video of the making of this song on the developer's site for those whom may be interested. I highly recommend giving it a watch. It is brief, but it gives you a decent idea as to how the app works. Another feature that this application has is the ability to send tracks via Wi-Fi to any computer with a browser. This will allow the person(s) using the app to mix the tracks down or continue working on them with their own computer software. It also includes some standard features such as: a metronome, pan controls, a compressor, and other features.
This is an interesting technology in my opinion. I have yet to mess with it, since I have been a Logic user for many years, I do not see myself even touching anything else. Might be worth messing around with at least, I suppose. For a musician on a budget, it may be a useful thing. But, if you can afford an iPhone, then why can you not afford some decent recording equipment and software? Either way, it is a neat little tool that I thought was worth mentioning. This is just one of the many products that gives you an idea as to how fast this industry (and the way it is marketed) changes. One can only imagine what may be in the works ten years from now.

- Derek Jenkins

Your Digital Record offers a more affordable alternative to the iTunes LP

It was only going to be a matter of time since the release of the iTunes LP that we would start to see competitors. A new company called Your Digital Download jumped right on the bandwagon with the new digital LP services with their own free version of this. In this artists and labels alike can upload their digital music files to produce digital interactive albums which will have all the same qualities of a physical release (artwork, pics, liner notes, lyrics) and also videos in an "online studio". Users will be capable of emailing their albums through embedded codes as a widget. Also, in the fashion of Radiohead, allows users to donate via PayPal to the artists. The article doesn't say if a percentage or how much of the donation will go to Your Digital Download or if it all goes to the band. The article also doesn't specify a revenue stream for the company for doing this free service. An employee of Your Digital Download, Chris Connell, states that this is a service launched for bands to have a similar service as the iTunes LP, but are unable to afford iTunes asking price and are not personally selected. I think this a great new service being offered. Being in a band myself I can definitely see us trying this new platform out. This is definitely the new trend in the production of albums and I am glad to see a company try to work with independent artists on this. I am curious as to the compatibility of this program and putting the mp3's on to iTunes since they are going to be competitors and iTunes is a very relevant source of fans actually listening to the music they have downloaded.

Trevor Kay

Friday, October 23, 2009

new music video technology

Recently, A new John Mayer video was released through his website, however this video now steps into a whole new world of fan-artist interaction. The technology, dubbed "augmented reality" music videos allows anybody with a cellphone, and a web cam to become a part of his new video. It is relatively easy to get started as well. I watched a YouTube video that demonstrated how it works; all you have to do is match up the image given to you from Mayer's site with your web cam, and at that moment the video starts automatically. From that point on not only can you see yourself in the background of the video, the video becomes entirely three dimensional allowing you to view the video itself at any possible angle.
This to me, is very exciting. My own personal opinion on music videos as of late has been that they have started to get a little stagnant. Every local band with a budget these days seems to be putting one out, and I'm sure I've seen the same 4 plot lines played out at least a million times over by now. This, however changes everything. Not only is the ability to see everything that is happening in the video in 3-D incredible, but the fact that it occurs in real time with the fan IN the video is an incredible step in music video history.
this can obviously have HUGE benefits for the marketing of a song/artist/album etc.. I'm not even a John Mayer fan and I had to play along with it.
-Eric Hart

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Google Prepares Music Search Service has confirmed that Google plans to launch a music service. Rumors suggest that it will be called "Google Music," "Google Audio", or "One Box". The name will be announced next Wednesday plus it will link out two music services: Lala and iLike. Most importantly, Google will offer enhanced music search with a streaming function rather then a online music retailer. According to the article, searching for an artist or song will bring up a box with a streaming link randomly assigned to stream songs from either Lala or iLike. From a marketing perspective, this popular search engine will allow music enthusiast to access on demand streaming services faster through a convenient service from Google. Already, musical guests such as Linkin Park and Dead by Sunrise are showing their support at the opening event of this service. Furthermore, Google's music search service will include music from all four major labels and, most likely, all of the indie content on iLike and Lala. ILike streams some songs as 30-second samples and others and full-length songs, plus sells MP3s. On the other hand, Lala allows users to stream complete songs and albums once for free. In addition, registered users can buy streaming songs for 10 cents that can be credited to the purchase of the full download. In conclusion, I believe with Google's brand image, this company will enable users to discover music more efficiently.

Billy Corgan Keeps Promise to Release Free Album

Smashing Pumpkins has decided to raise the bar on the free music bandwagon by releasing the very ambitious Teargarden by Kaleidyscope.

The revamped Pumpkins will let fans snag the 44 track ‘album’ for free. Corgan went on to state:

“Each song will be made available absolutely for free, to anyone anywhere … Free will mean free, which means you won’t have to sign up for anything, give an email address, or jump through a hoop. You will be able to go and take the song or songs as you wish, as many times as you wish.”

Basically, the band will put new songs from the "album" up on their website as the tracks are completed. It’s like a puzzle, and the fans have to keep returning to the website to get the pieces to the puzzle. Eventually, the Pumpkins will release their eighth studio album as a box set containing 11 four-track EP’s, which is where they hope to make their money.

Corgan also stated that the music “hearkens back to the original psychedelic roots of the [band]: atmospheric, melodic, heavy, and pretty”. This will be great for the original fans because they have drifted off into completely different styles at times, and it has been publicly known that people didn't necessarily like it

I not only like giving away music, but I really like the idea for this project. It kind of makes you feel like a part of the recording process. I’ve never heard of an album that has allowed fans to hear it from conception to completion. I really won’t be surprised if more bands copy it.

The fact that fans will have to keep visiting the website is obviously great marketing because the band can throw whatever they want up there, and millions of viewers will be forced to see it if they want the new music. Not to mention, with 44 tracks to collect, fans will be coming back to the website, with a purpose, with quite some time. Brilliant idea if you ask me.

-Woody Ellis

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

U2 to Play FREE Concert on YouTube

This Sunday at 8:30 p.m. (PST) U2 will be taking the stage in the Pasadena Rose Bowl Stadium, fans across the U.S and 15 other countries will be able to tune in and watch the whole 360° show live and FREE on YouTube. This will be a first for YouTube ever to broadcast a complete concert live. Also a first for U2 because it will be their biggest audience, inviting millions of people around the country and around the world to participate in what said to be the world’s largest band on the world’s largest at home venue.

Maybe you are wondering well how can they?  The show will be presented as an ad-supported stream; the types of ads that will be used “are still to be determined,” said Chris Maxcy, Google’s director of YouTube partner development. “So we will continue obviously to look for opportunities to provide that value within the context of making sure that we’re covering ourselves and the band with respect to all licensing that we need to do.”

 What is even cooler is that fans will be able to chat with each other as they watch, using an integrated Twitter feed. Another thoughtful addition to U2’s free concert: a “donate now” button linking to the RED campaign, a charity co-founder Bono whose goal is to eliminate AIDS in Africa.

 ~Rachel August Millas

Free Song with "The Twilight Saga: New Moon" Movie Ticket Purchase

When purchasing tickets for the upcoming movie, "The Twilight Saga: New Moon," an email will be sent to you with a link to download a song off the album for free on iTunes. Fandango, iTunes, and Chop Shop/Atlantic Records have teamed together to present this giveaway. In the email is also a link to purchase the entire New Moon soundtrack. This is another marketing strategy for the album. Millions of people will be seeing the movie in theaters the first week it is released, and many have already purchased tickets, a month before the premiere on November 20th. Each person who receives this email will get a free song. Also, the email makes purchasing the album only a click away. Since the album was released four days early, the email also is a reminder the album is available to purchase right now.

The song chosen for the free giveaway was the exclusive remix "Satellite Heart (Air Mail Remix)" by Anya Marina. This is also promotion for this artist. Previously there was a lot of promotion behind Death Cab for Cutie's new single on the soundtrack "Meet Me on The Equinox." Anya Marina is also an Atlantic Records/Chop Shop. This will also bring more awareness for Anya Marina to fans of The Twilight Saga: New Moon.

~Laurel Zevitz

Monday, October 19, 2009

Who Wants To Open For Mew?

Mew, a Danish indie band who recently released their fifth studio album in August, is looking for local bands to open for them during their North American tour. The US tour begins November 30th in Philadelphia and they are seeking openers for Philadelphia, Boston, New York, Chicago, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles shows. Details haven’t been released yet but Mew’s website says details to come soon (
I think it’s nice that Mew wants to support local bands and give them such an opportunity. I’m sure there are hundreds of bands who would’ve supported Mew through out the entire tour but they choose to do it this way, which is awesome for our local bands. This is a great marketing opportunity for up-and-coming bands from these cities. Playing a show with Mew means lots of exposure, especially since they are playing pretty large venues. New bands should always take advantages of opportunities such as this because these things can help launch a career.

Erin Schwaba

Blink 182 On Vinyl

There is not really an article on this but I thought it was quite interesting. Blink 182 is releasing their breakthrough record “Enema of the State” on vinyl in celebration of the record being released a decade old. It was released for pre-order today (10/19/09) in three different packages. The first package is a copy of the record in either red, blue or clear vinyl, all limited to 500 copies. These copies were sold for $15 a piece. The second package is a copy of the record in black vinyl with a gold embossed seal commemorating the 10 year anniversary. I could not find a number that this package was limited to but it was being sold for $20. The third package was all four different colors of vinyl with the gold embossed stamp. This package was limited to fifty pieces and sold for $60. The records went on sale at around 11 o’clock our time. When I checked back at about 3 all the packages were sold out.

I think this is a great way for artists to earn a little extra cash for their back catalog. Releasing a commemorative cd or lp and making it a limited edition is a great way to make money without really doing any work for it. This in my opinion would work best for bands with a cult following with very loyal fans.

This is the link to the webstore

Steve Smith

Kickstarter: Because You Can't Fund Your Own Album!

ATTENTION: Struggling Artists of the World

While I'm sure many of us would love to put out a new record at this very moment, the harsh reality is that for the most part, we simply don't have the funds necessary do properly record and promote such a release. I, for one, work a crappy day job in order to support such ventures, but man, it'd be nice if I could get a little help.

That's where Kickstarter comes in.

Kickstarter is a website that helps artists to fund their records. The site allows musicians (as well as record labels, painters, videographers, and all other creative types) to create a new project and get help funding the project from their fans by offering a tiered reward system.

For example, one project on the site is to help fund a new album by a group called The Quiet. The goal for the project is $10,000 by October 25, and the group offers the following funding rewards:

A digital download of the album when released, plus your name will appear in a special digital thank you section on their website.

The above, plus an autographed copy of the physical CD when finished.

The above, plus you get a thank you in the actual physical liner notes of the CD, and a unique, yet to be designed, handmade t-shirt from the band.

The above, plus you'll get exclusive video updates from the studio, a deluxe edition of the album, and DVD of the making of the album.

For higher pledges, the group includes such rewards as recording a cover of your choice, writing a song specifically about you, a trip to Disneyland, personal concert, and even a share of publishing rights for the song.

Now...if the goal is not met, the pledges do not go through, no one is charged, and the project is not funded. This keeps artists from having to fulfill pledges that they cannot do without proper funding, and keeps fans from being ripped off. Kickstarter only accepts a limited amount of projects in order to keep the website from becoming over-saturated with content, so it's important for artists to come up with truly creative ideas that will appeal to the site's staff.

I think that this is a truly great system, and fits into a perfect niche in the "new" industry. This site not only helps artists to fund projects, but helps to make a true connection between artists and fans, solidifying a dedicated fanbase for artists.

Check out to learn more

Alex Katz


Topspin is a technology platform for direct-to-fan marketing, management, and distribution. Topspin helps bands develop tools to not only market CD releases, but also distribute them. Topspin offers integrated software to help artists with widget platforms, e-mail marketing, and target marketing.

"Topspin helps generate demand for your music in five key ways:
Fan-to-fan viral marketing
Target marketing to acquire new fans
Direct marketing to existing fans
Flexible offers to drive higher revenue per transaction
A 360° data analytics platform to help optimize your marketing tactics"

The article I found discusses how Topspin has helped a smaller known band called Fanfarlo release a CD for 1 dollar and an e-mail. It helped the band gain popularity in the US as well as in other countries. They are unsure if Topspin can help all smaller bands, since the platform is more know for helping artists such as the Beastie Boys, and Eminem, but they are willing to see how things will go.

I think that the platform is a great marketing tool for any band. The goal though is to figure out how lesser known bands can utilize the system. I think once they begin to establish more smaller bands, more ideas will come about.

- Valerie South.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

"Still Hoping to Sell Music by the Month"

Everyone remembers Kazaa. The music file sharing service that severely damaged the music industry. It was created by Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis. Both men are now back in the industry and in the works of creating a program called Rdio. Rdio, much like Rhapsody, is a subscription based program for listening to music. I was surprised to read that labels such as E.M.I were seriously considering working with Rdio, considering how much damage these two people caused from their past creation. However, if their ideas are innovative and seem to help with success in the future, I guess it makes more sense to jump on board rather than pass it up, no matter who it's with.
But future success is questionable. Is a monthly subscription through a program such as Rdio really going to benefit these labels? Rhapsody has been competing with iTunes for years, and the numbers are not even close. Sure, paying a reasonable amount to listen to music on your computer and create playlists does sound inviting, but not when you can't transfer these files onto your iPod and take them with you.
Also, when it comes to streaming music, Pandora has done a pretty good job of taking over that market, and finding their own niche. Not only does it continually stream music, but they have created their program to personally sort through music that you as the listener would like, based on the whatever artist or song you originally chose.
Of course entreprueners are going to keep trying to find innovative ways to make money in the music industry, but I just don't think that adding another monthly subscription based program for streaming music is needed in the industry. I don't think there is much money to be made in that area.

-Lyndsie Klott

Still Trying to Save Physical Sales

Months ago SanDisk has come up with a new way to distribute music physically. The new format is called slotMusic. SanDisk will offer a microSD that will have preloaded music albums on them. Each card will have 1GB of space and will be able to playback music up to 320kbps quality. Also, all the music on the SDcards will be DRM-free. The price for these cards are estimated to be 15 dollars per unit, but that is not confirmed and if that’s so that can end the idea before it launches. The units will include liner notes, cover art and other special features. To make the cards accessible through some car radios and computers a USB connector/adapter will also be included. Since around 1.2 billion mobile phones are shipped globally that has SD slots do you guys think this will become a growing trend that could help the physical sales in the Music Industry. Will we start to see music being sold in cell phone stores? It’s possible that artist will soon have their own phone that comes preloaded with their music on SD slots. What do you guys think?

Trevion Martin

Technological Tendencies

I read an article this week about the tendencies of men to "go digital" more often than women.

In several respects, men seem to be more attached to technological advances than women. In a study, males were more apt to utilize online news pages than to read print newspapers or magazines. Also, more men have adapted to online radio as a replacement for regular radio. Television technology is also discussed, with men being more willing to pay subscription fees for ad-based online TV sites.

The study also provided some overall statistics about age-related tendencies. The results seem to be somewhat consistent with what we likely perceive them to be. People in the 18-34 age group are more likely to replace print content with internet services, while people 35+ consider print publications to be more valuable.

This information can be beneficial in deciding which mediums to use for marketing to particular demographics. Internet platforms may be especially useful for marketing to men in the 18-34 age group, while print ads perhaps could be more effective in marketing to women or older people.

Here is the article that I read:


Saturday, October 17, 2009

Apple's FM Radio for iPhones and iPod Touchs

According to rumors, Apple will be releasing their FM Radio app which will allow iPhones and iPod Touchs to pick up (you guessed it!) FM Radio! This hardware has been within the devices since their second generation. If this is true, my phone should be receiving some additional functionality soon if the app does not get delayed again. Hopefully that will make up for the less-than-wonderful 3G signal that it gets.
Anyway, the real interesting part here is that Apple will be integrating iTunes Store functionality into the program. I am assuming that this will function to where you can purchase the song that you are listening to from the program. I believe that this could potentially work out quite well for Apple. Despite the fact that they are not exactly hurting in the iTunes Store department, I can see this as only increasing their sales. How many times do you hear a tune on the radio, only to forget the title and artist name when you get home? Now you will not have to worry, if you have an iPhone that is. Not only will it increase iTunes Store sales, but some people may purchase an iPhone because of this added functionality. I already know of one person that has been waiting for this, so there are bound to be others like him.

- Derek Jenkins

Friday, October 16, 2009

Bon Jovi and NBC.

Bon Jovi is now essential the resident band for NBC. With the Grammy winning band's next album The Circle's release on November 12th, the band will perform on the Today show four times throughout November, and tracks off of their new album will be integrated into many of NBC's programming. The network also now has exclusive access to the band and the tracks off of The Circle during the albums first month on the streets.
I think that this is a really great opportunity for Bon Jovi and NBC. Bon Jovi now will have exposure to one of America's most diverse audiences which can only help push sales of Full Circle; and NBC, who's ratings are hurting may get an extra boost as Bon Jovi fans will inevitably tune in more often.

-Eric Hart

Your Music Could Be In The Next Rock Band Game.

I ran across this article where the creators of the game "Rock Band" are launching the brand new "Rock Band Network." Details are minimal at this point, but the program will allow for the user to create playable tracks & submit them for review. If approved, the songs will be available the "rock band store" for purchase. The creators will also be getting paid per purchase.

I think this is a great idea. It promotes creativity & gives a chance for unknown bands to get their music to a whole new audience & to get paid for it. It'll be very interesting to see how this will work once all the details are finally revealed. Ultimately, it could be a brand new way for new artists to be discovered or it could be a way for already established artists to debut new material.
-Marcus Hall

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Judge: Cellphone ringtones are NOT Concerts.

Recently, a federal judge dismissed a music industry dispute regarding cell phone's ringtone playback. The argument (made by ASCAP) was that, "copyright infringement starts happening when a cell phone's ringtone begins playing." The mobile phone in ASCAP's view (in this particular situation) was that it functioned as a portable concert hall since others can hear the song. Overall, this means that millions of mobile phone users are copyright law violators anytime anyone calls them. ASCAP in this contention was attempting to bring in even more royalties from music fans. Furthermore, ASCAP collects royalty payments for public performances of songs from venues as divergent as a summer camp and a stadium. Most importantly, ASCAP was in a legal long shot, copyright chaos might have ensued had the royalty-collecting group actually prevailed. In my opinion, agencies are looking to squeeze out as much money as they can before music becomes a "free" universal platform. The ruling claimed that ASCAP did not show any infringement of its members' rights by the playing of ringtones in the public from Verizon's customer's telephones. From a marketing standpoint, ringtones are not damaging an artist's exposure. Ringtones purpose is similar to that of on demand Internet streaming service which is to expand music enthusiasts libraries of songs. In conclusion, ringtone playback that can be heard by other people is more of a benefit than disadvantage to the music industry. Keep in mind groups like ASCAP have a mandate to get their members as much revenue as they can, and you have a recipe for lawsuits whenever someone tries to do something new with digital raw material.

-Ryan Dolan

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Dr. Dre Helps Unveil New HP Notebook

I came across this blog and immediately became interested. HP is releasing a new laptop that is geared to music production on the go. Interscope Geffen A&M chairman Jimmy Iovine and legendary producer Dr. Dre and HP unveiled the HP ENVY 15 Beats limited edition notebook PC. The system comes with a custom pair of Dr. Dre headphones and some real kick ass production software. The computer itself has great specs, including a not-yet-released processor from Intel. This laptop seems to be aimed towards multiple markets including the audiophile, the music producer, and even the gamer, as it is easily powerful enough to run today's most popular and power hungry video games on the market.

"We started this journey with the headphones to improve the transmission of sound between record makers and consumers," Iovine said during the press conference today. "What's out there is not representative of what you hear in the recording studio. As we went on this journey, we found that computers were in the way. Artists and producers want their sound repaired in digital audio. Computer companies charge $1,000 for computers but only spend 50 cents for speakers. With HP, we found a partner willing to take the step to improve the overall sound in the PC. This is for anyone who plays music." "The laptop is the new stereo and that's why we're putting out this computer with incredible sound," Dr. Dre said. (

-Woody Ellis

MOG Signs Deals with Big Four to Start Streaming Subscription Service...

I found an interesting article about a new online music source/store that actually offers a feature that allows you to access your music from your mobile device. MOG is a younger blogging network that raised $5 million in venture capital and has licensing deals with, the Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, the Warner Music Group and EMI Music, plus thousands of independent labels through the digital distributors Orchard and Ioda. For $5 a month, members can listen to as much music as they want from their computer; for $12 to $15, users can access music on their mobile devices as well.

MOG draws influences from other more well known music subscription services that I'm sure don't need to be mentioned. Users can listen to the songs of any artist and build a playlist with only that music. It also has the standard feature where you can automatically search for similar artists in live mode, sort of like a your own personal radio station. People can then share their playlists from their site on the MOG service.

For a blogging site to to switch gears and become a competitive music subscription service among giants like Pandora and Rhapsody (ok I mentioned them), seems like no easy task, but I must say that the idea of being able to access the service (and your song collection) from any mobile device is an incredibly attractive and unique marketing feature. I don't even use services like these, but MOG has sparked my interest. I know some people are probably feeling guilty for certain methods they may or may not use in obtaining digital music, and this seems like a cheap, convenient, and particularly cool alternative, and a great way to discover new music!

MOG‘s press release:

MOG, the Web’s premier music blogging destination, today announced that it would launch MOG All Access, an innovative new digital music service for North America, by Thanksgiving 2009. MOG also announced partnerships with all four major music labels: Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Warner Music Group, and EMI Music.

“Our goal with MOG All Access was to build the best service for listening to and discovering music, period,” explained MOG Founder and CEO David Hyman. “To accomplish this, we’re providing access to millions of songs (just about everything), with a drop dead easy way to hear any song or album you like in an instant, from the convenience of your web browser. You’ll get access to MOG radio, a revolutionary listening experience that will forever change how you discover music and truly redefines what radio is, and killer tools for discovery through other users of the service. And you get it all monthly for the price of a beer. We’re setting the music listening bar.”

Through partnerships with all major labels including Universal Music Group, Sony Music, Warner Music Group and EMI Music, plus thousands of independents via IODA, Beggars Group and more, MOG‘s All Access will provide unrestricted access to over 5 million tracks. MOG will be adding millions more in the coming months.

Currently in closed beta testing, the service is expected to be available by Thanksgiving 2009 and will cost $5 per month. Curious music fans will be able to sample the service for free.

Hyman explained, “For $5 a month, you can download five songs from iTunes or have access to millions of songs on demand, better radio, a world of relevant articles, reviews, news and lyrics, and a community of fellow fans and expert music sources with whom you can discover new artists, share playlists and explore music.”

-Woody Ellis

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

iTunes "Single of the Week" (SOTW)

So I wanted to blog again about something iTunes has been doing for some time. This is an example of a great marketing technique as well as something you all should know about as it may be something of interest to you.

Itunes has been featuring every week an artist/band and giving away one of their singles to download for free. They select the artist each week from music iTunes employees are currently enjoying in their libraries (and i'm sure labels and management companies also have an influence on their choices too). After they select the artist, they choose one song to be featured as the free download and for that week, it is FREE! Usually the song is either the artist/band's current single, or possibly iTunes' favorite song off the album.

This is beneficial to both iTunes AND the artist/band. Itunes benefits from this with hopes that those who download the song enjoy it enough to purchase the entire album. The artist/band benefits from getting there music out there to as many as possible, those who were unsure or unaware that want to sample their music before purchasing the entire album or even a single song first. And if by chance those who download the free single like it, they may even be inclined to purchase the album, increasing the artist/band's album sales.

This happens weekly so i highly suggest all of you to keep an eye on it and maybe check out new music or maybe even an artist/band you like may be featured and you can download a free song of theirs.

This week's featured artist is Robert Francis (Atlantic Records) with his single "Junebug." If you like bands such as Brand New, Bright Eyes, The Killers, etc. i think you will enjoy his single and possibly other songs of his.

The link to iTunes "Single of the Week" can be found here.

~Laurel Zevitz

EMI Trades Lawsuit for Deal with Music Start-up Grooveshark

Reportedly, EMI had been working on a licensing deal with but ended up suing it instead because it didn't have the rights to their music but way played their music anyway. EMI is now signing a licensing deal with after all. offers music fans the ability to stream songs for no fee from a vast catalog of music. This week, entered into agreements with major label EMI Music and EMI Music Publishing that will give Grooveshark users access to content from EMI’s roster of current and legendary catalog artists and EMI Music Publishing’s songwriters.

Everyone seems to be happy, even Mark Piibe, EMI Music’s Global Head of Digital Business Development said, ”Grooveshark offers a new revenue stream for our artists and will help us learn more about how we can better connect different types of fans with artists.”

This goes hand in hand with product alternatives.

~Rachel August Millas

Live nation and 2 for 1 tickets

Live nation has recently decided that for a week they we're going to offer 2 for 1 tickets to all the shows offered by the venues they own which include House of Blues and the Filmore chains. Customers reacted so well to this that Live Nation has decided to extend this promotion for one more week. Ticket sales have increased by 300 % and fans in total saved $350,000. Some of the artists included in this deal were Saosin, Buddy Guy, Trey Songz, Rusted Root, and more. The offer goes for more than 450 shows and includes 250,000 tickets. I think this is a great idea by Live Nation. I know they already have some what of a negative image by some people for buying out venues and over charging tickets, but this is a great way to build some brand loyalty to those that attend their venues. Concerts are a great place too to offer 2 for 1 tickets considering that most people go to concerts with a group of people, and what a great way to convince people to come by telling them their ticket is half off. I know I would go to a couple more shows a year if the ticket prices were 50% cheaper. However, I think its smart as well to only do this every once and a while. It will keep customers checking back for specials on their website, then maybe while they're there they will see an artist the like that they didn't know was coming and decide to go to the show. Its also smart to not do this year round otherwise you're just going to make patrons feel that shows should be normally priced that low. I think this was a great idea and its something that Live nation should continue to toy around with.
-Trevor Kay

Monday, October 12, 2009

Perez Hilton does a music tour...sounds like he should of stuck to blogging.

My article this week is about "famous" blogger Perez Hilton's music tour that featured up and coming indie bands over a 3 and a half week span in different cities in North America. The article states that the tour was "decently" successful. Stating that crowds were modest, ticket prices were lowered on the day of the show & tickets were even given away at some venues. Some music execs weren't even aware that these bands were going on tour. Not to mention this is a guy who now has his own label imprint over at Warner Music Group. I know, what the hell right?

From what I read, this sounds like a marketing failure to me. I think that this tour was given the green light because of his name & they figured that it would be a good way to give some of these bands some spotlight. Only problem is, I'm sure his readers aren't the target market for some of these bands. I only know, because some of the people I know that read his blog religiously have never heard of any of these bands. I can see what they tried to do...but in the end it was a failure.
-Marcus Hall

Fall Out Boy gets creative with pre-order packages for their greatest hits album

So recently Mark Hoppus (Blink-182) shaved Pete Wentz's (Fall Out Boy) head. Pete claimed it was the "death of the emo haircut." This may sound similar to Jay-Z's campaign for his album The Blueprint 3 with "Death of Auto-tune". That was intentional on Pete's part. But what on earth did Pete decide to do with his hair? Read the following:

"You heard about the Greatest Hits album? Well, now we are telling you
about the OCK Greatest Hits preorder. This will be different than the
preorder available on This preorder will only be
available via Details on how to purchase these packages
will be posted tomorrow, Oct 13 in the News section. In the meantime,
below is a sneak peek as to what’s included.

And check it - the first 400 to purchase the Premium edition get a lock of
Pete Wentz’s hair from MSG in their plaque (cut by Mark Hoppus of Blink

So stay tuned to this New section so you can get yours tomorrow!

Basic edition: $19.99 (plus s&h)
- Physical version of ‘Believers Never Die - Greatest Hits’ album
- Rubber Overcast Kids / Thnks fr th Mmrs Wristband
- 1 year fan club membership/renewal in Overcast Kids (all Diamond /
Platinum / Gold members get 2 years)

Deluxe edition: $39.99 (plus s&h)
- Physical version of ‘Believers Never Die - Greatest Hits’ album
- Rubber Overcast Kids / Thnks fr th Mmrs Wristband
- Limited Edition Poster
- Exclusive Overcast Kids / Thnks fr th Mmrs T-Shirt
- Colored 7” Vinyl w/FOB tracks
- 1 year fan club membership/renewal in Overcast Kids (all Diamond /
Platinum members get 3 years and gold members get 2 years)

Premium edition:
$129.99* (plus s&h)
- Physical version of ‘Believers Never Die - Greatest Hits’ album
- Rubber Overcast Kids / Thnks fr th Mmrs Wristband
- Limited Edition Poster
- Exclusive Overcast Kids / Thnks fr th Mmrs T-Shirt
- Colored 7” Vinyl w/FOB tracks
- “Thnks fr th Mmrs” commemorative plaque
- 1 year fan club membership/renewal in Overcast Kids (all Diamond members
get 5 years, Platinum members get 4 years, Gold members get 3 years)

Some fun facts:

*The first 10 Diamond/Platinum Overcast Kids members to pre-order the
Premium edition will receive LIFETIME membership in the Overcast Kids.

**The first 400 fans to preorder the Premium Edition will get a lock of
Pete Wentz’s hair from MSG in their plaque
(cut by Mark Hoppus of Blink

And for the current Diamond/Platinum OCKs - you’ll get first dibs at the
Premium edition before anyone else!

Stay tuned for more info….

—Overcast Kids"

Kind of creepy. But in a weird way it is genius. Fall Out Boy did something similar in the past, except with their blood. They mixed a vile of their blood in the ink used on the album artwork for their album Folie A Deux.

~Laurel Zevitz