Billboard.biz has learned that a group of industry giants, including Warner Music Entertainment (WME), Warner Music International’s video-production arm, is to launch a U.K. Internet-delivered TV service devoted to live concerts.
Called the Lovelive Channel and scheduled to launch this year, the service is being jointly developed with U.K. independent-labels company Beggars Group, live-music organizer Mama Group, and the online-video developer Perform Group.
“The major labels might be in trouble, but live music has never been healthier,” says Richard Cohen, Perform Group’s managing director, entertainment. “And the second best thing after actually being at the concerts is to capture the event and stream it live.”
Most of the streamed concert videos will be ad-funded and free to consumers, with a section of exclusive premium live shows that viewers will pay for.
Up to 300 gigs a year will be filmed at five of Mama Group’s live music venues, including London’s Jazz Café and The Garage, which are being converted to include TV-studio facilities.
WME will provide its expertise in video production, which can be seen on Rhino.tv, the online music-video service WMI created jointly with Perform.
Simon Wheeler, the Beggars Group’s digital director and chairman of the new media committee for indie labels’ trade organization AIM, says: “For a company like ours, we’ve several bands across all our labels performing shows. And in terms of business development, we’re always asking them if they want to take opportunities like this to gain revenues and exposure.”