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“We need [P2P] legislation now, and we need it before we lose more workers!”
——Jim Urie
NARM CLOSES OUT WITH FIERY WORDS FROM URIE
UMGD Chief Urges That the Org’s Membership Do Everything Possible to Stop the Bleeding
NARM 2010 went out with a bang, as Jim Urie gave a stirring speech when accepting the Presidential Award for Sustained Achievement. After thanking NARM, his wife and family (and choking up when talking about his 91-year-old dad), the UMGD chief tore into the constituency for not doing more to lobby for legislation against P2P file sharers.

“I remember this room when there used to be over 2,000 people,” said Urie. “When Tower was still here, and Musicland had a 10% marketshare.” He went on to say, “It doesn’t have to be this way. Every one of us knows that peer-to-peer has decimated our business.”

He railed at the crowd, telling them that all over the world nations are legislating against P2P, with amazing results. He said that South Korea, Sweden and France have all enacted legislation, and that sales have gone up, by double digits in some instances.

“The Lime Wire judgment is good but is not enough,” he insisted. “We need legislation now, and we need it before we lose more workers!”

He chided the audience that NARM needed to take a stand. “There’s legislation pending all over the world; why isn’t it pending here in the United States? I’m calling on NARM for a call to action, and we have to act together!” It was an extremely heated moment in an otherwise festive night of touching acceptance speeches.

Other award recipients included Tommy Boy’s Tommy Silverman, who won the Independent Spirit Award, while Island’s Melissa Etheridge, received the Harry Chapin Humanitarian Award. After the buzz reel of her career, Etheridge asked the audience, “Do you know what it’s like to watch all of the hairstyles you’ve had?”

Big Machine’s Taylor Swift was named Artist of the Year and accepted the award on the same stage on which she’d performed on at the 2007 NARM before her career odyssey really began. Cyndi Lauper won the Sustained Creative Achievement Award and then played a couple of blues tunes from her upcoming Downtown/Fontana release, joined on stage by Memphis greats Charlie Musselwhite on harmonica and Lester Snell on piano.

Colbie Caillat played a six-song set to a very appreciative audience. Also performing short sets were Razor & Tie’s David Barnes and Liquid Audio Media’s (Anderson Merchandisers’ label) Ashlyne Huff.

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