Wow. Just last year, we passed along news from the NPD Group that “about one million consumers stopped buying CDs in 2007.” Well, in 2008 it got much, much worse: “there were nearly 17 million fewer CD buyers in 2008 compared to the prior year.”
More bad news for the industry:
• The decline in CD buyers cuts across all demographic groups, but was particularly focused on teens and consumers age 50 and older.
• There were 13 million fewer music buyers in the U.S. last year, compared to the prior year. The decline in music purchasing was led by a 19 percent drop in CD sales.
• Only 58 percent of Internet users reported purchasing CDs or digital music downloads last year, versus 65 percent in 2007.
The good news:
• The number of Internet users paying for digital music increased by just over 8 million in 2008 to 36 million Internet users.
• Purchases of online digital music downloads increased by 29 percent since last year.
Continue reading NPD Group: CD is Dying Fast
Major labels may be…ahem…slow to recognize the benefits of filesharing but not everyone in the music industry is so dense. Case in point: South by Southwest.
The premier music festival of the year has once again posted on their site the mp3s of this year’s acts. That’s great, but who wants to scroll through the entire site downloading one file at a time? Nobody, and the SXSW organizers seem to recognize that and in years past even created a torrent of the files users could download all at once.
Well, SXSW isn’t doing that this year, but they have allowed a user to do it and it’s available to all without fear of retribution from heavy-handed labels. TorrentFreak reports:
For the fifth year in a row, SXSW has released a DRM-free, RIAA-safe collection of songs totaling 6 GB, which can all be downloaded for free, thanks to BitTorrent.
This is nice for just about everyone. A) Users get to download everything in one neat, relatively fast package; B) SXSW saves on bandwidth; C) Artists get yet another channel to distribute their music and spread the word; D) The Man is going to sue your grandma when he finds that you’ve downloaded his band’s gear.
Continue reading SXSW Offers Torrent of 2009 Acts
We get a TON of emails from bands, labels, and PR agencies. I mean it’s crazy sometimes. We can’t get to all of them and we certainly can’t listen and review everything we get. We can try to give props whenever we can so I’ll personally try to post more Cool Band Alerts when something strikes my fancy.
Today’s alert is Orange County’s The Union Line. Check ’em out:
The Union Line (MySpace)
Jack White‘s got another new band. Rolling Stone attended an invite-only preview in Nashville and has the full report:
The new band takes White from the front of the stage back behind the drum kit, while the Kills’ Alison Mosshart mostly handles singing duties. The two are joined by White’s fellow Raconteur Jack Lawrence on bass and former touring Raconteur/Queen of the Stone Age Dean Fertita on guitar. […]
The tracks — a sludgy, bluesy blend of psych-rock guitar, alternately stark and explosive rhythms and Mosshart’s sultry-to-siren vocal — take relatively logical leaps from the members’ other bands, White’s groove-heavy drumming elevating the Dead Weather’s Stripes-esque blues-rock moods and Fertita and Mosshart pulling in atmosphere and disaffected cool, respectively.
The album, Horehound, is due in June. You can stream a couple of songs—”Hang You from the Heavens” and “Are Friends Electric?”—from the band’s website. Jack White is starting a “vinyl record label” as well. More details at the Los Angeles Times. Could be interesting…
MP3: The Raconteurs – “Texas Border” (live in Glasgow, 10/14/2006)
Image courtesy of Third Man Records.
Continue reading New Band: Jack White + Kills = Dead Weather
Apple Corps, Ltd., Harmonix and MTV Games have announced the 9/9/09 worldwide release of The Beatles: Rock Band. The game, an “unprecedented, experiential progression through and celebration of the music and artistry of The Beatles,” will be available simultaneously worldwide for the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii.
There will be “a limited number of new hardware offerings modeled after instruments used by John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr throughout their career” but it will still be compatible with current music-based video game peripherals.
The game software will retail for $59.99, the standalone guitars for $99.99, and the “Limited Edition Premium Bundle” will be $249.99.
Full press release after the jump…
Continue reading "The Beatles: Rock Band" Due in September
The Specials‘ founder, keyboardist, and songwriter Jerry Dammers says he’s been excluded from the band’s upcoming 30th Anniversary reunion dates, thanks mostly to the efforts of singer Terry Hall. Dammers says that he was involved in some early rehearsals, but that’s only because word of the meetings slipped out to him.
“The fact is that I would not have been invited to the first ‘reunion’ meeting at all had [drummer] John Bradbury not told me about it,” he said in a Guardian piece. “It was generally agreed to get together and commence rehearsals, by everyone except him [Hall].
“Shortly after the meeting, however, [guitarist] Lynval Golding phoned me saying that I was not required for the band – ‘like Bill Wyman from the [Rolling] Stones’ were his exact words. Terry’s manager circulated emails from which I was excluded. Rehearsals were held without me, and I only managed to attend two – one of which was attended by only four people.”
Ouch. Dude is the founder of one of the most influential 2 Tone ska revival bands and can’t even get those guys to return his calls?
Looks like a lot of the issue is around what kind of reunion dates they play with Hall favoring an extended tour in smaller venues and Dammers preferring a couple large-scale shows, mostly in London and Coventry.
The Specials will play UK live dates next month and will play at the T In The Park, Oxegen and V Festival.
Via The NME.
Once a month we look back on the stuff we wrote that got the most attention. We don’t do any special weighting for items that appeared later in the month, or anything fancy like that. These are simply the things that received the most views last month, according to our stats. If an item carries over from last month’s chart, its prior rank appears in parentheses.
1. 21 Reasons Why Jay Bennett Should Be Back In Wilco (Feb)
2. 21 Best SXSW 2009 MP3s (Feb)
3. Review: Bruce Springsteen – Working On A Dream (Feb)
4. (1) The 21 Best Legal MP3s of 2008 (Jan)
5. Glorious Noise Turns Eight Years Old Today (Feb)
6. Lost Classics: Kate Bush – The Dreaming (Feb)
7. Axl Rose Speaks to Billboard (Feb)
8. Review: Von Bondies – Love Hate and Then There’s You (Feb)
9. Review: Glen Campbell – Greatest Hits (Feb)
10. (2) Jesse Malin – Live in Keighley (Jan)
See the Catalog Chart after the jump…
Continue reading Most Popular GLONO Items: Feb. 2009
Madonna Tops 2009 Music Money Makers List:
1. Madonna: $242,176,466
2. Bon Jovi: $157,177,766
3. Bruce Springsteen: $156,327,964
4. The Police: $109,976,894
5. Celine Dion: $99,171,237
6. Kenny Chesney: $90,823,990
7. Neil Diamond: $82,174,000
8. Rascall Flatts: $63,522,160
9. Jonas Brothers: $62,638,814
10. Coldplay: $62,175,555
Billboard points out that “Regardless of genre, retail sales or radio play, each of the 20 acts on Billboard’s Moneymakers list toured in 2008.” In fact, Madonna “only had the 50th-best-selling album in the country.” So…current sales really don’t matter. People are going to these big-production shows to hear the oldies. Seems obvious.
Of the Top 10, only the Jonas Brothers first charted within the last five years. The rest have been around since at least the dawn of the new millennium… There’s only a handful of post-millennial acts in the rest of the Top 20: Michael Buble, Miley Cyrus, Taylor Swift, and Kanye West. Think any of them will be making this chart in 25 years? (Of course, people would’ve said the same thing about Madonna and Bon Jovi…)
See the rest of the Top 20 after the jump…
Continue reading Top Earners in Music for 2008
Pete Doherty reveals to the NME that the Libertines have received multiple offers worth millions of pounds to reunite for British festivals but that co-leader Carl Barat has nixed them all.
“We had some ridiculous offers to headline Reading,” he said. “Like £2 million to headline this festival, £1 million to headline that festival. I said, ‘Why don’t we just do it? Let’s get the old band back together.’
Pete and Carl have been seen together on occasion and have even performed some acoustic sets in recent months so what’s the problem? Pete says it’s personal.
“He (Barat) said, ‘We have to be friends, we can’t just do it for the money’. I said, ‘OK, let’s be friends! Friends who go and make lots of money’, because I haven’t got any money and I know he’s skint.
…and then it gets weird, even for Pete Doherty.
“He said I had to go and see an energy consultant, some new age guru who is going to measure my energy levels and see if I’m surrounded by darkness.
Sounds like one of those Scientology exams. Have we lost Carl too?
Previously: Carl Barat on Pete Doherty; Pete Doherty + Carl Barat = TLA; Reunited… And It Feels So Good; GLONO Video with Dirty Pretty Things; What Became of the Likely Lads?; and on and on…
This is why I love the internet. The Hound Blog is giving away Hasil Adkins – The Great Lost Album. The songs are from a 90-minute cassette that the rockabilly legend had given to WFMU deejay James “The Hound” Marshall via Norton Records’ honcho Billy Miller back in the mid-90s to play on his radio show.
So Billy gives me this cassette of Hasil’s home recordings, no info, no song titles, nuthin’, but every song is great. Some of his best work. Much better than anything on the Fat Possum LP (which captures Hasil on a very uninspired day). As far as I can tell none of this stuff has ever been released, so now it will escape, I being the one to unlock the cage and let it loose on you–the rest of the world. If you’re a Hasil fan, fidelity isn’t one of your great concerns, this stuff was recorded at Haze’s house in the holler somewhere in the country side outside of Madison, West Virginia and transferred to cassette by Hasil himself.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Haze, the best place to start is Out To Hunch, a seminal collection of his recordings from the 50s and 60s. One of my first forays onto the world wide web was a Hasil Adkins fan site that I haven’t updated since about 1997.
Fans will certainly appreciate some of the song titles on this new tape: Let Me Talk To You (Moo Moo Moo), Me & Jesus (Got It All Worked Out), Lee-Anne (I Wanna See You Boogie Woogie), Somebody I Used To Know (and Chased Away With A Baseball Bat), You’re Too Young For Me.
MP3: Hasil Adkins – “Ugly Chelsea Clinton Hunch (Feed Her Commodity Meat, Bill)” (courtesy of WFMU’s Beware of the Blog, who is mirroring the mp3s)
Hasil Adkins: web, myspace, wiki.