Rock giants Metallica will release their long-awaited new Blackened/Rhino set on 11/18—the same week as superstar Bruno Mars. The pair will square off on the SPS and Album charts, with the rock foursome’s label making a power move and first-week action looking to be in the vicinity of 250k. The manager-less Mars is looking way down from the label forecast of 400k, and appears set to debut in the range of 200-225k.
The table has been perfectly set for the Grammy inner circle, with bona fide superstars Adele, Beyoncé and Drake all on board, offering them the opportunity to get it right next February—something for which they’ve been widely criticized in the recent past.
Troy Carter defended Spotify’s free tier of music at the Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.D Live conference in Laguna Beach, saying, “we don’t ever get to a world where everybody is paying for music.” Furthermore, Spotify will not enter the business of exclusives.
Sir Elton John and Sir Lucian Grainge compare stories of Her Majesty drinking them under the table, as part of the less publicized post-knighthood ritual. Then they returned to the subject at hand: a UMG gathering in L.A. celebrating Sir Elton and Bernie Taupin's 50-year collaboration, and the RIAA certification of 17 million copies of Elton John: Greatest Hits and 2m+ copies of Rocket Man: Number Ones. Seen just before changing into matching rhinestone-encrusted jumpsuits are (l-r) Island chief David Massey, UMe topper Bruce Resnikoff, Sir Elton, Sir Lucian, Taupin and UMPG ruler Jody Gerson.
Hillary Clinton is hitting the battleground states with pop stars in the days leading up to the election. Jon Bon Jovi will perform tonight in Pittsburgh and 11/5 in Tampa, Fla. Jennifer Lopez headlines a Miami “Get Out the Vote” concert Saturday on a bill with her ex-husband Marc Anthony and Gente de Zona.
Interscope’s Lady Gaga will debut at #1 on both our Sales Plus Streaming (SPS) Chart and Album Sales Chart this week. Reprise's Michael Buble looks set to follow her at #2, while RCA's Pentatonix are poised for a Top 5 bow on both charts. Also noteworthy: More than half of each Top 15 will be new releases.
THREE Q4 BIGGIES SQUARE OFF
Will Metallica get heavy with Bruno and The Weeknd? (10/27a)
TWO SIRS, WITH LOVE
It was quite a knight... (10/27a)
THOMAS RHETT IS
Here's what artist development looks like in 2016. (10/27a)
I.B. BAD: DOUG'S THIRD ACT AND ENCORE
Morris stepping down at career pinnacle; Stringer a highly capable successor. (10/27a)
A DOUG MORRIS TIMELINE
A remarkable run recounted. (10/27a)