Morning Fix: Beyonce Unexpectedly Drops New Album on iTunes; Billboard Playlists Spotify's Most Played; Audiam to Pay YouTube Creators for Using Tracks

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BEYONCE UNEXPECTEDLY RELEASES NEW ALBUM ON ITUNES

Just minutes before midnight EST Friday (Dec. 13) morning, Beyonce released her fifth album, a self-titled set, exclusively on iTunes. Details are still emerging on confirmed producers, but guests credited on the "exclusive visual album" are Jay Z, Drake, Frank Ocean and daughter Blue Ivy.
Billboard.biz


BILLBOARD'S PLAYLISTS ARE SPOTIFY'S MOST PLAYED IN 2013

It was a historic and vibrant year for the Billboard charts, which coronated new stars like Lorde, Baauer and Macklemore while welcoming old favorites in Justin Timberlake, Eminem and Katy Perry, just to name a few. As usual, Billboard kept music obsessives up to date on every ebb and flow in the world of popular music in print, on this website and beyond -- including places like Spotify, where listeners made official Billboard playlists the most popular in the world for 2013.
Billboard.biz


WOMEN IN MUSIC: THE BIZ HONORS P!NK, JANELLE MONAE, JULIE GREENWALD, FORTY OF THE TOP MUSIC EXECS (GALLERY)

A photo gallery from Billboard's Women in Music event.
Billboard.biz


ROD STEWART TOPS HOT TOURS WITH $4 MILLION GROSS FROM VEGAS RUN

Veteran rocker Rod Stewart takes the No. 1 ranking on the weekly Hot Tours recap with more than $4 million in reported grosses from his third multiple-show run this year at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.
Billboard.biz


AUDIAM TO PAY YOUTUBE CREATORS FOR USING ITS TRACKS

It used to be that users who upload videos to YouTube containing copyrighted music are served with legal threats. In February, they'll have the chance to get a check instead. Audiam, a company that monetizes cover songs on YouTube, is offering a novel twist on music licensing: give people who use a selection of the company's tracks in their videos the ad revenue generated by those videos for the month of February.
Billboard.biz

 


TAYLOR SWIFT, JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE'S 'INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS' SCORE GOLDEN GLOBES NOMINATIONS

The 71st annual Golden Globes nominees include Justin Timberlake's song from "Inside Llewyn Davis," Taylor Swift's track from "One Chance," and Coldplay's closing credits from "Hunger Games: Catching Fire."
Billboard.biz


JENNI RIVERA'S POSTHUMOUS ALBUM DEBUTS AT NO. 1 ON THE LATIN ALBUMS CHART

A full year after her death, and in the throes of multiple specials, concerts and homages surrounding her death, Jenni Rivera once more tops the Billboard charts with "1969 - Siempre: En Vivo Desde Monterrey: Parte 1," on Fonovisa.
Billboard.biz


BEYONCE'S NEW ALBUM CRASHES ITUNES OVERNIGHT

Overnight, Beyonce has released her fifth studio album without warning. Referred to as the "visual album" and titled Beyoncé, it was made exclusively available on iTunes without any announcement—and has already made quite an impact.
Gizmodo


A STREAM OF MUSIC, NOT REVENUE

When Spotify, the digital music company of the moment, announced this week an exclusive deal with Led Zeppelin and free access on mobile devices, it also reported impressive numbers. Its listeners have streamed 4.5 billion hours of music this year, and it has paid more than $1 billion in music royalties since its founding.
New York Times


SAMSUNG MERGES CAMERA AND MOBILE DIVISIONS IN A BID TO DIFFERENTIATE ITS SMARTPHONES

The last two specs that have any meaning left on a smartphone's spec sheet are the camera and the battery. Recognizing the importance of imaging to its phone line — and the complementary need for connectivity in modern cameras — Samsung has decided to combine its Digital Imaging and Mobile Communications businesses into one.
The Verge


GUITAR HERO CREATORS TACKLE FITNESS EQUIPMENT WITH GOJI PLAY

Charles and Kai Huang, who are behind Guitar Hero, got the band back together and started Blue Goji. Today they’re launching Goji Play, which is a set of exercise equipment-friendly game controllers that lets you play games while on a treadmill or a bike.
Tech Crunch


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