As thousands of football fans flock to New Orleans for Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday, dozens of musical acts will also head to the Big Easy to collect hefty paychecks for performing at brand-sponsored events. Between Jan. 31-Feb. 3 you can catch (take a breath) Stevie Wonder, Lil Wayne, Big Boi, Pitbull, Flo Rida, Eli Young Band, Lee Brice; Nas; B.o.B; Santigold, Diplo; Solange Knowles and Hunter Hayes among many others.
BIZ Q&A: BPI CHIEF GEOFF TAYLOR ON GOOGLE'S SEARCH PROBLEM, HMV'S FUTURE, MORIBUND DIGITAL ECONOMY ACT
Speaking exclusively to Billboard.biz, BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor outlines key issues currently facing the U.K. music business, including: the need for stronger government legislation (3 years later the Digital Economy Act still hasn’t been enacted); more co-operation from the tech sector (Google search still brings up piracy sites); and more support for brick and mortar (“a large percentage of HMV stores are profitable”).
JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE TO PERFORM AT GRAMMY AWARDS
Six-time Grammy winner Justin Timberlake will perform on the 55th Annual Grammy Awards telecast next weekend, the show announced today. This marks the first time in four years that Timberlake will take the Grammy stage, and it will be his debut TV performance on the eve of his first studio album in seven years. Billboard.biz
MIDEM has experienced another drop in numbers – about 7% under last year – with organizers blaming the effects of a tricky financial climate. The four-day event drew about 6,400 attendees, organizers Reed Midem confirmed on the final morning of the trade fair. Last year's show had reported a rise of some 2% on the previous edition.
For the launch of the album currently at the top of the Billboard 200 – A$AP Rocky's debut, "Long.Live.A$AP" – Chicago-based Eyes & Ears Ent. orchestrated a creative digital campaign: Powered by a mix of web-based services, fans can call A$AP Rocky, leave him a voicemail, "chop and screw" that voicemail to make it sound like it might on an A$AP Rocky track and unlock exclusive content in the process.
MIDEM INTERVIEWS: KOBALT'S WILLARD AHDRITZ, AMEX'S JOHN HAYES, SACEM'S JEAN NOEL TRONC, BLINK-182's MARK HOPPUS:
MIDEM, the annual French music confab on the Riviera, provides ample opportunity for tete-a-tetes with some of the most interesting execs in the music business. Yesterday, .Biz posted interviews with Willard Ahdritz of Kobalt, AmEx's John Hayes, SACEM's Jean Noel Tronc and artist Mark Hoppus, all of which can be found on our 2013 MIDEM Hub.
David Braun, a prominent music lawyer who represented such superstars as Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, George Harrison and Michael Jackson, died Wednesday in Santa Barbara after a long illness. Many of the concepts considered standard today were achieved through his negotiations, including rights of reversion, advances inclusive of recording costs, limited-term foreign publishing rights with substantial advances and considerably higher royalty rates. He was 81.
UNIVERSAL MUSIC LATIN ENTERTAINMENT ANNOUNCES KEY SENIOR APPOINTMENTS IN MEXICO, LATIN AMERICA
Universal Music Latin Entertainment has announced key senior management appointments to its Latin American operation following its integration with EMI. Chief among them are the appointments at Universal Music Mexico of Alfredo Delgadillo as general manager and Fernando Grediaga director of Marketing. Billboard.biz
A documentary series on Ke$ha will air on MTV beginning in April, the singer will announce tonight on MTV’s new live late night comedy show, “Nikki & Sara Live.”
COACHELLA 2013 TICKET WOES, QUICK SELL-OUT
Tickets for the first weekend of this year's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival reportedly sold out within 15 minutes, even as computer users reported widespread issues in attempting to purchase weekend passes. Tales of ticketing woes filled the Coachella Facebook page, with many reporting the festival's ticket agency Front Gate would log users out or fail to load once a user's credit card info had been entered. Tickets for April 12 weekend, however, continued to be purchased up to two hours after they were said to be sold out. Front Gate is owned jointly by AEG Live and C3 Events.
Los Angeles Times
EMI AUSTRALIA LOSES 20 STAFF, NEW ROLES TO BE OFFERED TODAY (REPORT)
EMI Music Australia has retrenched about 20 staff as the company begins its integration into Universal Music Australia. The lay offs were made yesterday, with Universal bosses – including Australian head George Ash – meeting staff in the Sydney office. The label also lost single staff members from the Melbourne and Perth offices. Staff who have been retained will be offered new roles today, either under Universal or as part of the EMI frontline.
YOUTUBE TO LAUNCH PAID SUBSCRIPTIONS CHANNELS
A new chapter in online video is about to begin. YouTube is prepping to launch paid subscriptions for individual channels on its video platform in its latest attempt to lure content producers, eyeballs, and advertiser dollars away from traditional TV, according to multiple people familiar with the plans. YouTube has reached out to a small group of channel producers and asked them to submit applications to create channels that users would have to pay to access. As of now it appears that the first paid channels will cost somewhere between $1 and $5 a month, according to sources
BLACKBERRY 10’S DEBUT TODAY IS A CRITICAL DAY FOR RESEARCH IN MOTION
Research in Motion’s introduction of a new BlackBerry phone today will be the most important event in the company’s history since 1996, when its founders showed investors a small block of wood and promised that a wireless e-mail device shaped like that would change business forever. BlackBerry had only 4.6 percent of the global market for smartphones in 2012, according to IDC. The new line of smartphones is called the BlackBerry 10. Thorsten Heins, the president of RIM, says the device will restore the company to glory.
The New York Times
SONY UPGRADES MUSIC UNLIMITED TO 320KBPS STREAMING ON ANDROID, PS3 AND THE WEB
Sony Network Entertainment International announced that the company's Music Unlimited service now offers users the ability to listen to high quality audio through the service's PC (Windows and Mac OS), Sony Xperia and other Android smartphones and tablets, Sony Android Walkman, and PlayStation3 (PS3™) computer entertainment system applications. By turning on the high quality streaming option in Music Unlimited's settings menu, songs will playback in pristine 320 kbps AAC high fidelity audio.
HEADLINES OF THE DAY
- ‘Bloomberg: The Musical’: He’s Not Calling the Tunes
- Marilyn Manson sues woman for claiming he is 'pro-Nazi'
- Marilyn Manson Sues Woman for Claiming They Were Engaged
- Just look at the gross banana recipes in this 1940s Chiquita Banana promotional cookbook
- New Lil B Single: "I'm The Bada$$ (Joey Bada$$ Diss)"
- There Was A Weird Bright Red Cloud Trail Over The East Coast Tonight
- Rihanna: My clothes are edgy cool
- Ray Price accepts Blake Shelton's apology over country music comments