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BOY-BAND BATTLE BEGINS, PRETTYMUCH

The first serve has been delivered in an anticipated battle of the boy bands with the release of “Would You Mind,” the debut SYCO/Columbia single from PRETTYMUCH. The group was created in the manner of One Direction by Simon Cowell and Sonny Takhar, who hope lightning will strike twice. Their opponents are Why Don’t We (below right), who have a head start on their prospective rivals, having independently released three EPs and a Christmas single prior to signing to Atlantic.

The PRETTYMUCH track led off Spotify’s 7/21 New Music Friday playlist in the highly competitive context of album releases from Lana del Rey, Tyler, the Creator and Meek Mill, along with new singles from Louis Tomlinson and X-Ambassadors, among numerous other high-profile debuts.

I.B. Bad set the stage in his most recent column:

Atlantic reportedly gave a $4m guarantee for two firm and no ancillary rights to Why Don’t We, a five-member boy band put together by Randy Phillips. The group’s analytics on the socials and Spotify were so strong that a bidding war ensued, which ultimately saw Craig Kallman throw down the elephant-bucks guarantee.

That sets up what may well escalate into an old-school boy-band battle with PRETTYMUCH. There’s a huge early buzz on the first single, and they’ve got some big TV looks coming up in August.

After doing the groundwork with Cowell on PRETTY MUCH, Takhar left SYCO in order to launch his own Columbia imprint later this year.

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