NARM To Honor 'American Idol'
In another move at gearing up for its annual convention, the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) announced today that it will honor the American Idol franchise at the convention's finale award dinner on May 12. The talent show, in its 10th season, will receive an "Outstanding Achievement Award," from the trade group.

"There is no question that American Idol has had a profound impact on the music business in terms of discovering new talent, inspiring new music, supporting live touring and contributing to recording sales with more than 50 million albums and over 160 million song downloads on iTunes," NARM President Jim Donio said in a statement. "It is a certified pop-culture phenomenon that has earned iconic brand status over the past decade, and is the only TV program to have been No. 1 for seven consecutive seasons."

Idol judges and contestants, as well as representatives from 19 Entertainment, FremantleMedia North America and Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX), will be invited to participate in the presentation that will revisit Idol's journey to the top, according to the announcement.

The NARM convention runs from May 9-12 and will be held in Los Angeles at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel.

Redeye Distribution Seals Deals With Oh Boy Records, Quality Hill, RacecarLOTTA

Redeye Distribution has signed four artist-centric labels to distribution deals, which all together include albums by Edie Brickell, John Prine, Steve Goodman, the Get Up Kids and Tapes On Tapes.

In the deal with the largest catalog, Red Eye is handling physical distribution (i.e. CD and vinyl), for Oh Boy Records, which besides Prine also features releases by Todd Snider and Dan Reeder; and its sister label, Red Pajamas, which houses the Goodman catalog. Combined the two imprints have about 50 titles.

The Haws River, N.C.-based distributor also signed deals to distribute the Get Up Kids-owned label, Quality Hill, which on Jan. 25 is set to release the band's first album, "There Are Rules," in seven years; and also signed a deal with Ibid, owned by the band Tapes OEn Tapes, who just issued their album "Outside." Both of those label deals are for all formats, including digital.

Redeye is also issuing, in all formats, two Edie Brickell-related records, both on her own indie label, racecarLOTTA Records. First up and just out on Jan. 11, a self-titled solo album; and on Jan. 25, one a band effort, the Gaddabouts, which also includes Steve Gadd, Pino Palladino and Andy Fairweather-Low.

IRIS Distribution Gets "Sparticus" Ringtones
IRIS Distribution will handle global distribution of ringtones for the "Spartacus" hit original series through a deal with Starz Digital Media, the digital and on-demand licensing arm of Starz.

The ringtones and ringbacks feature key phrases from characters from this popular TV series, and are available at mobile providers such as Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Virgin and Sprint, including availability for the iPhone.

"The series has a dedicated following, and these mobile options give fans a way to show off their favorite phrases like Spartacus' 'I burn for no cause but my own' it makes a real statement," Bryn Boughton, Co-Founder and CMO of IRIS Distribution said in a statement.

"Spartacus: Gods of the Arena," a prequel to "Spartacus: Blood and Sand," will debut on Friday, Jan. 21.