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CROSSCURRENTS, PART THREE
The Motown story (3/25a)
SONG REVENUE CHART: "RING" IN THE IDES OF MARCH
The full Monte yet again. (3/22a)
NOT IN HITS LIST
We use only the highest-quality click bait. (3/22a)
COLUMBIA SPRINGS THE COUNTRY TRAP
A whole new wrinkle (3/22a)
THE ROOTS OF ROCK & SOUL, SONG BY SONG: THE LATE ’50S
The saga continues. (3/22a)
THE NEXT RECORDING ACADEMY HEAD IS...
(The envelope, please.)
IT'S NOT JUST ABOUT MARKETSHARE
But it is, really. Isn't it?
WHAT IF I DON'T STREAM?
First of all, don't panic.
WHO ORDERED THIS PIZZA?
Seriously, come get it now or we're eating it.
Pub Crawling
PUBLISHERS' SUIT AIMS TO PUT BRAKES ON PELOTON
3/19/19

Music publishers are spinning mad over Peloton using thousands of musical works and have filed a lawsuit seeking damages of more than $150m. 

Downtown Music Publishing, Pulse, ole, peermusic, Ultra Music, Big Deal Music, Reservoir, Round Hill, TRO Essex Music Group and The Royalty Network assert that the fitness technology company has failed to license works from a significant number of publishers. The company makes thousands of exclusive videos and playlists for their stationary bicycles.

National Music Publishers’ Association President & CEO David Israelite said, “Unfortunately, instead of recognizing the integral role of songwriters to its company, Peloton has built its business by using their work without their permission or fair compensation for years.”

The company launched at-home streaming in 2014 and offers a subscription service with more than 13,000 workouts, the NMPA states. Peloton’s videos include music from Rihanna, Bruno Mars, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and other stars that the NMPA contends are unlicensed.

“It is frankly unimaginable that a company of this size and sophistication would think it could exploit music in this way without the proper licenses for this long, and we look forward to getting music creators what they deserve,” Israelite noted.

Downtown's General Counsel, Peter Rosenthal, said the company is hoping for a settlement. “We prefer to avoid litigation. But where we see the willful and ongoing infringement of so many works over a period of years, we will act to vigilantly enforce our songwriters’ valuable copyrights.”

 

MARSHALL-ING THE TROOPS
3/18/19

Warner/Chappell Co-Chair/COO Carianne Marshall has issued a sharp rebuke to the coterie of tech firms now appealing the CRB ruling regarding a royalty rate hike, arguing that their actions in opposition to the increase could adversely affect the livelihoods of songwriters. Here's her message to the company's constituency of tunesmiths.

An Open Letter From Carianne Marshall to Songwriters

Hello,

You may have heard about the tech companies’ appeal of a recent CRB ruling, and we wanted to make sure you were clear on our stance on this crucial issue.

Last year, the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) granted an increase of the compulsory mechanical rates paid to songwriters - from 10.5% to 15.1% over the next five years. The decision came after rigorous consultation with many parties, including a wide range of tech companies, as well as songwriters and music publishers. There were strong arguments made on both sides, and the resulting rate increase was fair as well as overdue.

That is where the debate should have rested...

...Read More

 

BARRETT YERETSIAN ON THE POWER
OF HEAVINESS
3/15/19

Every once in a while on this corner of the site we like to share a little wisdom from gifted songwriters about process. In this installment, the unreasonably talented Barrett Yeretsian talks about the power of heaviness in an excerpt from a fascinating piece he penned for ASCAP.

I admit it. I’m a sucker for heavy. I’m a metalhead trapped inside the body of a balladeer. I started off as a dolphin-faced (facial hair hadn’t sprouted yet) heavy/thrash metal drummer headlining LA’s Sunset Strip clubs with my band when I was 15. Fast-forward to some years later: I wrote and produced an emotional pop ballad called “Jar of Hearts”(performed by Christina Perri) which ended up being the #5 biggest pop song the year it was released. 

You might be wondering, what could possibly bridge that Grand Canyon-sized gap between the thrash metal drummer and the emotional balladeer? Heaviness.

Barrett goes on to outline five ways to bring this power to one's own work, starting with authenticity but also embracing chordal and melodic choices and other tactical matters. It's a thoughtful read and another example of how diving fearlessly into one's own passions and predilections as a writer can yield huge rewards.

Read the whole thing here.