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CAN TAYLOR DO IT AGAIN?
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HEAVY WEATHER:
RAINMAKERS II
This is no ordinary doorstop. (8/19a)
END OF THE "ROAD," BILLIE GETS HER FIRST #1
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A PRESEASON
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More speculation over lox and bagels (8/19a)
HEAT!
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DOLDRUMS!
Nothing doing.       
LUNCH!
Well, what do YOU want?      
VACATION!
Badly needed.     
Blighty Beat
SONY U.K.: ANNETTE DONNELLY
11/27/18

MD, Sony Music Ireland

Annette Donnelly is responsible for running Sony Music in Ireland, where she wears multiple hats to cover A&R, marketing, sales, promotions, legal, finance and HR, to name a few. Alongside her team, she works on global campaigns for international acts as well as locally signed artists. Formerly Sony Music U.K. MD, Donnelly was promoted into her role following the BMG merger.

This year, she’s been busy with the George Ezra campaign, which started with him playing new music in Dublin back in May 2017 at the Olympia Theatre, where Donnelly “knew immediately he had a hit record coming.” “Paradise” peaked at #5 on the Irish singles chart, while “Shotgun” spent 10 weeks at the top of the airplay charts and nine weeks at #1 on the Official Irish Singles Chart.


Can you give us an overview of the state of the Irish music market—what kind of genres and artists do well?The Irish music market feels like it is in a really good place right now. We had a few scary years awhile back when the physical market collapsed, Internet piracy was at its height and we had no legitimate streaming services here. Thankfully, now we have had a growing market for over five years. It is very streaming-led, with streaming now accounting for about 70% of the market. We also still have a healthy physical base, with excellent local independent retailers like Golden Discs and Tower Records keeping the record-store experience alive.

Irish people love a real mix of music. Genres that do really well here include urban and R&B, with Khalid and Travis Scott performing strongly. Being on the edge of Europe, there has always been a strong U.S. influence in the Irish music scene. Pop is obviously huge, with artists like Calvin Harris, Camilla Cabello, The Chainsmokers and P!nk all very popular. However, there is still a demand for Irish traditional/folk music, with our local artist Christy Moore having the fifth best-selling album in Ireland last year.

What is the most exciting thing about the music scene right now?
The fact that anything can break from any place or from any genre; it feels as if the possibilities are endless. For example, the amazing Spanish artist Rosalía, who is bringing a modern twist to flamenco. I saw her perform in New York in September and went again to see her in London recently, as she is so incredible. A number of years ago, her chances of being successful were probably confined to the Spanish-speaking markets, but now it feels as if she can become a global superstar. It’s the same when we’re looking at signing a local Irish act; in the past we would have to create a big story out of Ireland first and then try and break out of other territories bit by bit. With streaming services and global releases, a hit can come from anywhere and can reach fans across the globe immediately. It’s an exciting time to be in the industry.