Friday, February 19, 2010

Hollie Smith broke

This story from yesterdays Dom Post says soul singer Hollie Smith lost $100,000 on her last album (for big jazz label Bluenote) and is broke. Then she says it lost $100,000, which is different. That means she lost that amount of money for her record label, by my thinking. Good to see she's managed to extract herself from their contract.

CORRECTED: The story says she lost hundereds of thousands, not $100,000 .

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Dub Asylum playing in Wellington, Sat Feb 20 at Havana
I'm off to DJ  at Webstock for the next two days. I have managed to squeeze in a Dub Asylum gig, at Havana on Saturday Feb 20, with Sounds Almighty, splendid reggae selectors from the capital. Free entry, kicks off at 10pm. Come on by and escape the hordes from Homegrown. Cool vibes in abundance.
EMI rehashes Grey Album fiasco over Wu-tang vs Beatles
Looks like the Wu-tang/Beatles mashup got a little too popular, as EMI are going after it. Read more here.

"... Its latest move is to force offline a wildly popular mashup, mixing The Beatles with The Wu Tang Clan., despite it getting rave reviews and lots of attention... and despite a history of similar actions backfiring massively for EMI.

Let's take a look back. Apparently the folks over at EMI/Capitol Records have no sense of history. Back in 2004, DJ Danger Mouse put together "The Grey Album," a fantastic mashup of The Beatles' "The White Album" with Jay-Z's "The Black Album." EMI/Capitol, who holds the copyright on much of The Beatles' catalog went nuts, and started sending cease-and-desists to pretty much everyone, leading to the infamous "Grey Tuesday" on February 24, 2004, where lots of websites posted the album in protest.

Years later, EMI admitted that the Grey Album didn't do any harm, but the company didn't care, saying "It's not a question of damage; it's a question of rights." Except, that's not true at all. If no damage is being done -- and, in fact, such a mashup is likely to attract a lot more attention to your back catalog from an audience who might not be that familiar with it, you're making a pretty huge mistake. That's just business..."

Wu-tang vs Beatles,  more on it over here
Universal Music's  new CEO thinks CDs are the future
This article is hilarious. First, there's the quote from former CEO, Doug Morris, who said, in a 2007 interview, that  "There's no one in the record company that's a technologist. That's a misconception writers make all the time, that the record industry missed this. They didn't. They just didn't know what to do. It's like if you were suddenly asked to operate on your dog to remove his kidney. What would you do?"
"We didn't know who to hire," he says, becoming more agitated. "I wouldn't be able to recognize a good technology person -- anyone with a good bullshit story would have gotten past me."

The incoming CEO is Lucian Grainge, who previously headed the company's international division. So, what's Grainge's take on the future? "I believe that the CD will out-survive me as a format," Mr. Grainge said in an interview.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Zodiac Records revisited
Simon Grigg has studiously complied a fascinating look at the catalogue of one of NZ's most important record labels, Eldred Stebbing's Zodiac Records. Read it here

Simon says "... I decided, a couple of years back, to put together a singles discography of what may be NZ’s most important record label, Eldred Stebbing’s legendary and groundbreaking Zodiac, and it’s associated bits and pieces.

With Eldred’s passing last year it seemed timely to finally finish this, or at least take it to a publishable standard, and post it, which I did a few days ago. This does however remain a work in progress and I’ll add more images and data as it and they become available.  The work of Chris Bourke, who’s forthcoming book on NZ music pre-rock, is one that I’m gagging to get my hands on, and Chris and historian John Baker have helped immensely...."

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Pauly Fuemana's family to put out his unreleased music
The Sunday News reports that "Pauly Fuemana's family may release his unrecorded music.
They are set to go through scores of unreleased tracks he recorded in the years following his worldwide hit How Bizarre... Older brother Tony Fuemana, boss of Urban Pacifika Records, said there was now a chance more music from OMC could be released posthumously.

"There are lots of songs that we have and we will have to look through them with the help of some of the labels and one of Paul's great friends, [ex-manager] Grant Thomas."

But while his family go through his unreleased back catalogue, huh! Records, confirmed it won't be doing anything with its own archived material. Simon Grigg, who owned huh! Records, said it did not "feel right" for him to release OMC material posthumously.

"Pauly put out the stuff that he wanted to put out," Grigg said. "We have got a whole lot of unreleased stuff that we will never release. Pauly didn't want it released at the time. It doesn't feel right."
Read the full story here