— Morgan Joseph maintained its “neutral” rating on Live Nation stock. Note the Morgan analyst believes artists could possibly have less, not more, leverage in the future. “We remain on the sidelines and look for more signs of positive free cash flow prospects. We believe strong cost containment and increased leverage over the artists can ultimately lead to an increase in free cash flow, reduction of debt, and strengthening of Live Nation’s overall financial position…Currently trading at an enterprise multiple of roughly 8.0x our FY10 EBITDA estimate, we believe the shares are fairly valued.” (Press release)
— On the morning after its first-quarter earnings release, shares of Live Nation were down 3.5%. Shares are up 23.2% over the last three months.
— It appears Google has already removed Lala streams from its search results. That leaves iLike/MySpace Music to stream the top songs related to artist searches at Google. Consolidation hasn’t been good for Google’s music-related searches. It was only seven months ago that Google unveiled a new music search “OneBox” that offered a new way to discover and buy music through Google searches. Since then, MySpace Music acquired iMeem (another OneBox participant) and Apple acquired Lala. Last week, Lala announced it is closing on May 31. (Digital Audio Insider)
— Sky News has a feature that offers a good look at British music startup mFlow, which has a new application (sorry, not yet available in the States) that is a cross between iTunes and Twitter. In a nutshell, it allows people to share music and make a small commission (good for store credit) when friends purchase music you’ve recommended. mFlow has secured funding from Russian media company TNT, one of the country’s top five television networks. (YouTube)
— Little is known about the opinions of Solicitor General Elena Kagan, who is now a Supreme Court nomination. Chris Castle found a video of Kagan, who was at the time the dean of Harvard Law School, making remarks at the Harvard Berkman Center that give some insight into her views on intellectual property. He writes, “Kagan’s thinking when she praised the Berkman Center for all the good it has done for the entertainment industry is a front and center issue for any Supreme Court confirmation as the AFL-CIO and other entertainment guilds struggle to save the jobs that Berkman folk work daily to destroy.” (Music Technology Policy)
— The Chasin Music Group has partnered with mobile software company Handmark to Chasin Hits, a turn-key mobile application for artists, managers and labels. At the same time, Van Fletcher, formerly senior VP of sales and operations at Universal Records South, has been named president of Chasin Music Group. (Press release)