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I.B. BAD: POINTS, STREAMS AND FALL DROPS

THE POINT SPREAD: Republic’s phenomenal performance of late has lent velocity to the label’s pursuit of the #1 marketshare spot currently occupied by Atlantic. Will Monte Lipman and team take the lead sometime this fall? Current calculations have Atlantic at 10.3 overall share, with Republic at 9.7—just over a half-point, after being down two full points in March. There’s an approximately 2 million-unit gap between the two labels, and both moved in the vicinity of 1m this week, so somebody has to go up or down to change the outcome.

What does Monte have coming up? Atlantic’s twenty one pilots are off to a slow start with their latest project, with the first two tracks performing anemically, though pre-orders appear strong; is another release from Cardi B on the horizon?

Meanwhile, Interscope is getting hot again and sits at 8.4—thanks to the exploding Eminem set (about which more below) and breakouts like Juice WRLD; mad buzz on the upcoming Gaga-powered A Star Is Born ST could add fuel to the fire.

Ron Perry’s Columbia and Steve Barnett’s Capitol are neck-and-neck for fourth place, while there’s a similarly tight contest for fifth place between Tom Corson’s Warner Bros. (which should welcome Aaron Bay-Schuck in October) and Peter Edge’s RCA. Does executive history add an extra layer of competitiveness to these face-offs, both of which are within 2/10 of a point?

STREAMING INTO A NEW ERA: Who at Spotify can compete with Apple Music’s team when it comes to artist relations? Even so, are the tech people taking control of both platforms in the tug-of-war of artist-driven content players? Can Troy Carter, in his capacity as a consultant, find a successor to fill the huge void he leaves? Is Daniel Ek aware of how great that void is? What will Cupertino-based Apple Music boss Oliver Schusser do now that Jimmy Iovine and David Dorn are out of the picture? Some believe Zane Lowe—whose facility with artists was exceeded at the company only by Iovine’s—could play a bigger role.

SHADY’S BACK: Eminem’s Kamikaze appears to be more than compensating for the misfire of previous release Revival, with his first-week number a weighty 411k. The set is an impressive and fiery return to form for the hip-hop giant, who scored this thunderous bow with only streams and digital sales—physical is just hitting shelves at presstime. Meanwhile, manager Paul Rosenberg—who can be heard on the record as the voice-mail of reason—must be pretty busy, what with his day job running a rival label.

SEPTEMBER SONG: Are late Grammy entries—released in September—ever effective? Our Grammy Whisperer surveyed the top album releases in that month for the past decade; only two earned Album of the Year nods, and only one, Mumford & Sons’ 2012 set, Babel (Glassnote), won in that category. Not a very good percentage. Can we agree that the strategy, if it is a strategy, doesn’t work? You can drop your single in September and not submit it until the following year, though there’s no evidence that will work any better.

TWO GRAMMY NERDS DISH ABOUT THE NOMINATIONS
Let the opinions fly. (12/14a)
AN ALL-GRAMMY
DOUBLE HITS LIST
Family economy size (12/14a)
FLIPOVER FRIDAY: NEW ARRIVALS AT iTUNES AND APPLE MUSIC
Action in the Apple-verse (12/14a)
MEDIABASE 2018 AIRPLAY TOTALS ARE HERE
All the "Hey Buddy"s your heart desires (12/14a)
REVENUE CHART: RED, WHITE, BLUE & GREEN
...i.e., "Rudolph," "Pure Cocaine," Ol' Blue Eyes and currency (12/14a)
GRAMMY NERDS BREAK IT DOWN
Wow, they really are nerds, huh?
REVERBERATIONS OF TAYLOR'S DEAL
What does it all mean? What did it cost? Answer the second question first.
IS IT COLD IN HERE?
It's fine, really. We'd just like to feel our extremities again.
EGGNOG
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