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THE POP LOGJAM: RADIO BATTLE ROYALE
Standing-room only on the airwaves (5/22a)
HARRY STYLES LIGHTS UP TROUBADOUR WITH SURPRISE GIG
...with a little help from Stevie Nicks. (5/22a)
IRVING ON VALUE OF YOUTUBE TO BIZ: "NONE"
But what does he really think? (5/22a)
IN OTHER NEWS,
TODAY IS WEDNESDAY
Same as it ever was. (5/22a)
RATINGS DROP FOR BIBLE'S AWARDS SHOW
At least the reviews were... Never mind. (5/22a)
A&R IN THE AGE OF STREAMING
You know you were wondering.
LORDE'S NEXT LEVEL
How Melodrama took shape.
NASHVILLE BIG CAT
His last album made him a star. Will this one explode?
APPLE'S NEXT MOVE
The plan for domination.
Pub Crawling
KATZ 'N' JAMMERS
5/19/17

For the second year in a row, BMG was named Independent Publisher of the Year at the ASCAP Pop Awards last night (5/18). The pubbery also saw 12 of its writers honored for their contributions to 11 hits. The pubco's Zach Katz is seen here accepting the award—and demonstrating the heart-stopping pout that launched a thousands love ballads. 

Among the BMG writers taking home awards were DJ Snake and Teddy Rafael Mendez for "Let Me Love You"; Xplicit for Fifth Harmony's "Work From Home"; Levi Lennox and Joe Garrett for ZAYN's "PILLOWTALK"; Khaled Rohaim and Derrus Rachel for Rihanna's "Needed Me"; Savan Kotecha for Ellie Goulding's "On My Mind" and The Weeknd's "In the Night"; and some kid named Bruno Mars for Mark Ronson's "Uptown Funk." 

Katz was presented the Indie Pubco award by BMG writer Poo Bear, best known for his work with Justin Bieber and his longtime friendship with Piglet.

SKEPTA WINS BIG AT THE IVORS
5/19/17

Looks like grime has gone legit. One of the genre’s most influential practitioners, Skepta, took home both Songwriter of the Year and Best Contemporary Song for the hit single “Man,” at London’s Ivor Novello Awards Thursday.

Repped by Warner/Chappell Music UK, Skepta’s victory came in recognition his landmark Konichiwa release, which has already earned him the 2016 Mercury Prize.

Overall, it was a big night for Warner/Chappell, as Michael Kiwanuka won for Best Song Musically & Lyrically with “Black Man in a White World” and Dario Marianelli took top honors for Best Original Film Score with Kubo and the Two Strings.

Jon Platt, Chairman & CEO of Warner/Chappell, said: “Skepta is a groundbreaking songwriter, and we're thrilled to see his exceptional talent acknowledged with two of the Ivors’ biggest honors. This is also a great moment for Amber Davis, the A&R executive who had the vision to support the grime community very early on, and bring many of its leading lights to Warner/Chappell.”

Added Mike Smith, Managing Director of Warner/Chappell UK: “I’m so proud that Skepta has been named Songwriter of the Year at the Ivors.  It’s well-deserved recognition for an artist and songwriter who spearheaded the development of the grime scene and marks a significant coming of age for the most exciting genre of music in Britain today. I also congratulate Michael Kiwanuka and Dario Marianelli who’ve been recognized today for their amazing talent.”

HUPPE LEADS SOUNDEXCHANGE GROWTH SPURT
5/15/17

SoundExchange is making inroads into the Great White North–and into the business of music publishing rights management. The digital performance rights giant announced that it has purchased the Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency Ltd. (CMRRA), a music licensing outfit that represents a majority of the songs recorded, sold and broadcast in Canada, on behalf of music publishers.

With this acquisition, SoundExchange can now offer a broad and comprehensive range of services to rights holders in both sound recordings and music publishing across North America. It’s also the first time a U.S. sound recording collective has joined with music publishing sector under one collective roof. The combined companies plan to integrate and streamline the administration and distribution of sound recording and music publishing royalties.

“We are proud to join forces with CMRRA. We have a simple, yet ambitious goal: to maximize the value of music for all creators–or musical works and recordings alike–wherever their work is used. The acquisition of CMRRA helps us increase efficiencies while also extending service to the publishing sector,” SoundExchange President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Huppe said. “This exciting partnership builds on CMRRA's great relationships with music publishers and licensees, its long record of accomplishment and its stellar reputation.”

For the time being, SoundExchange and CMRRA will work independently, while exploring ways in which the two companies can collaborate.

CMRRA President Caroline Rioux and her senior management team will remain in place, reporting to the board of directors of SXWorks, a new subsidiary of SoundExchange. Huppe has been named Chairman of the new company.

“We were looking for a partner that shares our vision and philosophy of service to the music publishing community,” Rioux said. “With SoundExchange, we will not only continue to deliver on our mission to maximize the value of the reproduction right in Canada and meet our clients' needs to quality and low service fees, we will also be able to develop new services domestically and beyond.”