1. BMI's Revenue Collections Grow to $977 Million, Royalty Distributions to $840 Million

    September 18, 2014 8:29 PM EDT Broadcast Music Inc. (BMI) saw revenue collections grow to $977 million in the past fiscal year, up 3.5 percent from the $944 million it gathered the year previously. Meanwhile, royalty distributions to publishers and songwriters grew 3.2 percent to $840 million from $814 million in the…

  2. Exclusive: Clive Davis Says Aretha Franklin Is 'On Fire' on New Album of Diva Classics

    September 18, 2014 7:10 PM EDT Following news Aretha Franklin is preparing a new album for release before the end of the month with Clive Davis overseeing production, there's great anticipation over what the legendary soul singer has put together with the help of Clive Davis' oversight.  Aretha Franklin Album…

  3. Jimmy Jam Remembers the Making of Janet Jackson's 'Rhythm Nation 1814': Exclusive Q&A

    September 18, 2014 2:25 PM EDT In 1989, as the world was going to hell, Janet Jackson was coming into her own. The pop star's ascent and the planet's downward slide intersected neatly on Rhythm Nation 1814 , a socially conscious, sonically adventurous, commercially massive album released 25 years ago tomorrow,…

  4. Janet Jackson's 'Rhythm Nation 1814' Revisited By Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis: Track-by-Track Review

    September 18, 2014 1:50 PM EDT If Janet Jackson 's third album, 1986's Control , was a declaration of independence, the follow-up, Rhythm Nation 1814 , was a constitution -- a blueprint for the kind of country that this confident, sexy and newly independent 23-year old woman wanted to live in. At least it was…

  5. Metallica's Kirk Hammett Is 'Tickled' About Contributing to New Exodus Album

    September 18, 2014 11:09 AM EDT Guitarist tells Billboard that reconnecting with his old bandmates is like "coming back to a fraternity you lost contact with." For Kirk Hammett , the guitar solo he performs on "Salt the Wound," a track on Exodus ' upcoming album Blood In, Blood Out (Nuclear Blast…

  6. Darrell Hammond Named 'SNL' Announcer After Don Pardo's Death

    September 18, 2014 10:56 AM EDT "It can't be what it was, but it could sort of be in the same tradition," Lorne Michaels tells USA Today. Darrell Hammond is rejoining Saturday Night Live as the show's new announcer, after longtime voice Don Pardo passed away in August at 96. Hammond will introduce the…

  7. James Brown's Daughter Details Domestic Abuse, Son Alleges Murder in Dueling New Memoirs

    September 17, 2014 4:45 PM EDT Yamma Brown offers chilling details of how her father beat her mother and Daryl Brown writes he has a "gut feeling" the singer was murdered. A pair of new books about James Brown by two of his children offer a disturbing look into the world of the Godfather of Soul, with graphic…

  8. Don't Fear the Reaper: The 20 Best Songs About Death

    September 17, 2014 4:15 PM EDT For a group of people obsessed with immortality, pop stars sure do sing a lot about death. Maybe it's not that surprising. It's a deliciously rich topic ripe for all kinds of songs: From murder ballads and tender tributes to nihilistic hip-hop jams, there’s a killer canon of…

  9. Watch The Rembrandts Play the 'Friends' Theme Song At Central Perk

    September 17, 2014 11:50 AM EDT They're still there for you. Ready to feel old? The 20th anniversary of the premiere of Friends is next week.  As part of the celebration, a pop-up Central Perk coffee shop, full of memorabilia from the show, is in New York City for the next month. On Tuesday night, the shop had a few…

  10. Exclusive: Pioneering YouTube Collagist Kutiman, Millions of Views Later, Is Not In It for the Money

    September 17, 2014 10:53 AM EDT In 2009, Israeli musician Ophir Kutiel was looking for YouTube tutorials he could watch to improve his own playing, when he stumbled across a clip of drummer Bernard Purdie (whose credits include session drumming for James Brown and musical direction for Aretha Franklin ) performing the …

  11. What Would Unity in the Radio Community Look Like?

    September 17, 2014 9:56 AM EDT In 2012, the broadcast group then known as Clear Channel -- now iHeartMedia, though for chronological purposes we'll refer to the company under its previous name -- came to the fall NAB/RAB Radio Show in Dallas on the heels of a deal it had made a few months earlier with Big Machine…

  12. Republic Records Restructures Media Department With New Executive Hires

    September 16, 2014 9:00 PM EDT Republic Records announced a restructuring of its media department Tuesday that includes new executive hires.  Beau Benton joins the record label as vice president, media, following nearly a decade at the independent public relations firm 42 West, working press for notables Rihanna , Lady…

  13. August Alsina Spills Off Stage in NYC: Watch

    September 16, 2014 1:27 AM EDT August Alsina took a nasty fall during his show Monday night at New York’s Irving Plaza. According to sources at the venue, Alsina wandered off stage mid-song and dropped onto the crowd barrier. He didn't return. The house DJ played on for a few moments before the announcement was made…

  14. Kiss Raises $1M for Oregon Military Museum

    September 15, 2014 6:43 PM EDT The band Kiss shed the makeup and pulled out acoustic guitars to raise money for the renovation of the Oregon Military Museum. Kiss' Gene Simmons Gets Behind New 'Coliseum' Reality TV Format The Oregonian reports the $2,500-a-ticket gala Sunday night in Lake Oswego raised more…

  15. HIM to Release Limited-Edition Vinyl Boxed Set, Remastered Catalog in November

    September 15, 2014 8:00 AM EDT Previously unreleased live version of Right Here in My Arms playing only at Billboard for 24 hours. Finnish “love metal” band HIM is releasing a limited-edition boxed set, Lashes to Ashes, Lust to Dust: A Vinyl Retrospective ’96-’03 , through the End Records on Nov. 25. It will contain four…

  16. Tom Skeeter, Sound City Studios Owner, Dies

    September 13, 2014 9:20 PM EDT Tom Skeeter, a longtime music industry insider and owner of the legendary Sound City Studios, has died, Billboard has confirmed. A cause of death was not revealed at press time. "We lost our main man, Tommy Skeeter this week. Grateful our Sound City Movie pals for introducing him…

  17. Does Ellie Goulding Have Royal Baby Fever?

    September 13, 2014 6:39 PM EDT Ellie Goulding's next gig just might turn into a royal affair. Just days after Prince William and Kate Middleton announced they are going to be parents again, Goulding opened up about the news. "I sent my congratulations already because I'm friends with Harry," she told Us…

  18. Watch Chris Brown & Ariana Grande Share Medieval Love in 'Don’t Be Gone Too Long' Video

    September 13, 2014 12:10 PM EDT Chris Brown and Ariana Grande play forbidden lovers in the new medieval-themed music video for his X track "Don't Be Gone Too Long.” Billboard Cover: Chris Brown Opens Up About Rihanna, Jail & Accepting Life as a 'Learning Experience' Brown, who recently appeared on…

  19. Neil Young, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden to Play Star-Studded Bridge School Benefit

    September 12, 2014 8:20 PM EDT Pearl Jam , Tom Jones and Soundgarden will be among the typically all-star cast at this year's Bridge School Benefit Concert organized by Neil Young and his wife Pegi Young . The iconic singer-songwriter will also perform at the annual event, which will take place Oct. 25 and 26 at the…

  20. MSG's James Dolan Opens for Eagles, Pens Songs About Eliot Spitzer & Trayvon Martin

    September 12, 2014 3:56 PM EDT Go on and blame the opening act if anything goes awry at this weekend's Eagles show in New York City. That's because billionaire Cablevision CEO James Dolan , who also runs Madison Square Garden, where the concert takes place on Saturday, has secured his own band to warm up the…

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