“I’m no girl next door. I’m the bitch down the street.”
——Tila Tequila


How Will Changes in Command at Sony BMG and Virgin Impact A&R?
By Rodel Delfin

BIG WEASEL SHOWDOWN: Tongues are flapping as to what may happen at Sony BMG if Andy Lack decides to step down—and how it will affect the power structure within the merged music group. What’s interesting to note is that the Sony labels have been very aggressive in making new A&R hires. Columbia’s appointment of veteran producer Steve Lillywhite, as well as additional scout hires, carries out Lack’s pledge earlier this year to beef up Sony’s A&R departments. Epic Records, meanwhile, maintains a streamlined staff that includes veteran record-making execs along with young scouts. The label recently added A&R hitter Diana Fragnito, who comes to Epic after years at Island. Meanwhile, chatter continues over Jason Flom’s imminent ascension to the throne of Virgin Records. Meanwhile, we hear that just-departed Virgin chief Matt Serletic has suitors courting him about a label venture… The new Myspace Records, which is a new joint venture deal with Interscope, has signed the Mike Renault/Jeff Peters-managed Hollywood Undead. The popular Myspace band has notched 851,000 profile views to date and has attracted numerous label inquiries over the past months. Barrister Jefferey Light mediated the deal. Looks like Myspace founder Tom Anderson has taken off his computer hat and picked up some weasel ears. So who’s up next? We like Tila Tequila, whose page has garnered over 18 million profile views. Whooaa! She has some nifty pop-rock-electro tracks posted, and her profile pics aren’t too bad either, but we love her motto: “I’m no girl next door. I’m the bitch down the street.”… Meanwhile, the Jon Goldwater-managed/Tommy Henrikson-produced Balay have signed with Ron Fair and Ryan O’Donnell at A&M/Interscope Records… The post-CMJ report on the Justin Goldberg-managed Grace Potter & the Nocturnals is that Columbia, Hollywood, Virgin, ATO, Universal and Artemis are all in pursuit of the band. We’ll keep you posted… Former Zomba Music Publishing exec Howie Abrams has left the publishing side to run a new label venture owned by Warner/Chappell. The label will be distributed through East West/WMG. Congrats, Howie, but we still expect to get backstage passes for the next Bowling for Soup show—for our kid sister, of course… For those who were following the Rockstar: INXS reality TV saga over the summer, you should give props to former Epic A&R guy Peter Cohen, who served as the talent producer for the show. Pete was responsible for assembling the 15 aspiring singers who landed on the show after a nationwide search. Expect the Mark Burnett-produced series to do another season with another rock band looking for a new singer. Meanwhile, we hear Epic has picked up finalist Jordis Unga for a deal and is probably going to ink finalist Marty Casey, who reportedly has been meeting with numerous managers for representation. We hear a bigwig handler is a frontrunner… Lastly, congrats also goes out to Viper Room booker Joe Rinaldi and wife on the birth of their new baby… BUZZIN’: The Operation, ZOX and the Offcuts… Hit me up: [email protected].