Morning Fix: Amazon Jumps Into Streaming Music; Honda Throws Cable Money to Music; Gaga to Live Nation

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AMAZON LAUNCHES PRIME MUSIC STREAMING SERVICE, MINUS UMG

When Amazon launched its Amazon Prime music subscription service this morning, it immediately became one of the largest paid interactive music services in the U.S., if you're measuring by subscriber base.
Billboard.biz


GWEN STEFANI, NO DOUBT SIGN WITH IRVING AZOFF: EXCLUSIVE

On Tuesday it was announced that Azoff MSG Entertainment (AMSGE) -- the joint venture between Azoff Music Management and the Madison Square Garden Company -- had acquired a 50 percent stake in Levity Entertainment Group (LEG), a multifaceted firm which includes live comedy venues, television production, talent management, and online digital services.
Billboard.biz


HONDA POURING OVER $50 MILLION AD DOLLARS INTO NEW MUSIC PLATFORM, HONDA STAGE

Honda is allocating its entire cable budget -- “and some more,” says the company -- into music this summer. As announced at an event from Honda’s campus in Torrance, Calif. on Wednesday, June 11, Honda has created a new live music platform, Honda Stage. The company is teaming with seven partners to amplify Honda-branded experiences.
Billboard.biz


LADY GAGA AND MANAGER BOBBY CAMPBELL JOIN ARTIST NATION (EXCLUSIVE)

“Lady Gaga is one of the most iconic and highest-grossing artists of this generation,” Michael Rapino, president and chief executive officer of Live Nation Entertainment, the parent company of Artist Nation, tells Billboard.biz. “We have a long-standing relationship with Lady Gaga, dating back to her 2009 Fame Ball tour, and we look forward to continuing to support Lady Gaga and her manager Bobby Campbell in their careers.”
Billboard.biz


BEASTIE BOYS' DEFENSE SAYS 'PAUL'S BOUTIQUE'-SUING LABEL DOESN'T ACTUALLY OWN COPYRIGHTS

The Beastie Boys might be finished producing new music, but the hip-hop group isn't done with copyright law. Amazingly, Michael Diamond, Adam Horovitz and the late Adam Yauch appear poised to score their third big legal win this year.
Billboard.biz


RECORDING ACADEMY TO ALLOW SAMPLES FOR ALL GRAMMY AWARD SONGWRITING CATEGORIES

The Recording Academy has announced a change to its awards criteria that will now permit samples and interpolations of previously written songs to be allowed in all Grammy Award songwriting categories, including song of the year.
Billboard.biz


NMPA PUTS U.S. PUBLISHING REVENUES AT $2.2 BILLION ANNUALLY

The National Music Publishers' Assn. has estimated that annual U.S. publishing revenues stand at $2.2 billion -- it's the first year the group has measured the market. The downside, however, to that large sum is that the trade group has also estimated publishers miss out on roughly $2.3 billion in revenue, owing to outdated copyright law and government regulations.
Billboard.biz


MASTODON, 50 CENT FIRST MAINSTREAM ACTS TO ACCEPT BITCOIN PAYMENTS

Bitcoin payment service provider BitPay is handling transactions. Last week, 50 Cent announced he would accept Bitcoin payments for his new album, “Animal Ambition”, using the same service.
Billboard.biz


TONY AWARDS TO DROP 2 CATEGORIES FROM 2015

The Tony Awards Administration Committee met Wednesday to determine the eligibility rules for the 2014-2015 season, and cut the categories of Best Sound Design of a Play and Best Sound Design of a Musical. That drops to 25 the number of competitive Tonys next year.
Billboard.biz


JACK WHITE AIMING FOR SECOND NO. 1 ALBUM DEBUT ON BILLBOARD 200 CHART

Industry forecasters suggest his new release, "Lazaretto," could sell between 110,000 and 120,000 copies in the week ending Sunday, June 15. That should easily be enough to top the new Billboard 200 chart, which will see its top 10 revealed on Wednesday, June 18.
Billboard.biz


IDINA MENZEL'S 'IF/THEN' SCORES SHOW-STOPPING CHART DEBUT

Debuting at No. 19, the set marks the highest debut for a cast album since 1996. The last cast effort to start as high was "Rent," which also debuted (and peaked) at No. 19 on the chart dated Sept. 14, 1996 (selling 43,000).
Billboard.biz


MIRANDA LAMBERT EARNS FIRST NO. 1 ALBUM ON BILLBOARD 200

As expected, country star Miranda Lambert earns her first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with the debut of "Platinum." The set — her fifth release — sold 180,000 copies in the week ending June 8, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
Billboard.biz


IGGY AZALEA STILL 'FANCY' ATOP HOT 100; SAM SMITH SOARS INTO TOP 10

Iggy Azalea tallies a third week at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 with "Fancy," featuring Charli XCX, and holds at No. 2 as featured on Ariana Grande's "Problem." Meanwhile, British crooner Sam Smith scores his first top 10, as ballad, and former U.K. No. 1, "Stay With Me," soars 19-10.
Billboard.biz


A DAY WITH THE DIGITAL VOICE OF STAPLES CENTER, CARA VANDERHOOK

During her more than 10 years with Anschutz Entertainment Group in Los Angeles, Cara Vanderhook has helped manage media campaigns for numerous high-profile events, including the Grammy Awards, the NBA Finals, the NHL's Stanley Cup championship, the groundbreaking of AEG's $3 billion L.A. Live district, hundreds of concerts and the public memorial service for Michael Jackson.
Billboard.biz


APPLE UNDER INVESTIGATION BY E.U. OVER IRISH TAX DEALS

The European Union's antitrust regulator has launched an investigation into tax deals that Apple, Starbucks and Fiat struck with some European countries, the start of a wider push to keep multinationals from taking advantage of loopholes.
Billboard.biz


CASSETTE STORE DAY 2014 ANNOUNCED

As announced on its Tumblr on Monday, the event will again feature London cassette labels Kissability and Suplex running things in the U.K. and E.U.; this time, however, Fullerton, Calif.'s Burger Records will be helping out stateside.
Billboard.biz


HOW A SEXED-UP VIRAL HIT FROM THE SUMMER OF ’09 — 1909 — CHANGED AMERICAN POP MUSIC FOREVER

In the spring of 1909, American popular song got sexy. Of course, love and courtship, and by extension sex, had been Topic A in pop music for decades. But while songwriters had long trafficked in euphemisms and innuendo—coy talk of “sighing” and “spooning” beneath the old oak tree and by the light of the silvery moon—it was a 1909 hit by composer Harry Von Tilzer and lyricist Jimmy Lucas, “I Love, I Love, I Love My Wife—But Oh! You Kid!,” which opened Tin Pan Alley to brasher, bawdier, more raucously comic songs of lust.
Slate


FCC TAKES FIRE FROM GOP AND DEMOCRATS AT HEARING ON MEDIA OWNERSHIP

Republicans call the FCC rules outmoded and outdated. Democrats suggest some are ineffective. The gulf between the parties on just what role the federal government should play in limiting the concentration of media was on full display at a congressional hearing on Wednesday, with an agency official left to try to explain where things stand.
Variety


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