A social networking site recently got bought by AOL for $850 million. That’s a whole lotta bread. Billy Bragg tells the New York Times that the musicians deserve a slice. The Royalty Scam:
The musicians who posted their work on Bebo.com are no different from investors in a start-up enterprise. Their investment is the content provided for free while the site has no liquid assets. Now that the business has reaped huge benefits, surely they deserve a dividend.
What’s at stake here is more than just the morality of the market. The huge social networking sites that seek to use music as free content are as much to blame for the malaise currently affecting the industry as the music lover who downloads songs for free. Both the corporations and the kids, it seems, want the use of our music without having to pay for it.
Bebo offered musicians a chance to promote themselves (for free) to its community. Musicians accepted this offer, and in exchange, provided their music for free. […] Investors made a very different trade. They traded money for equity. […] Complaining after the fact about what happened is like selling a bunch of wood to a builder for a few thousand dollars, and then complaining when he turns that into a million dollar house. Was the wood seller exploited?
But still, this raises an interesting point. Imagine if the next generation of social networking site offered a piece of equity in the business to its users. There are many ways this could be implemented, and none of them would be legally simple, ha ha, but it could be pretty cool. Get paid to surf the internet!
I love Converse shoes and have several pairs of Chuck Taylors and lament my giving away a pair of One Stars several years ago to GLONO co-founder Sabu. So it’s with mixed feelings that I read about the announcement of a limited edition Kurt Cobain signature shoe from the now-Nike owned Converse.
The shoe is set to feature Cobain’s name, lyrics, writing, and signature to mark the shoe’s 100th anniversary. The Cobain shoe is the latest in a line of subversive celebrity signature shoes from Converse. Other artists featured include Ian Curtis, Sid Vicious, and apparently Hunter S. Thompson, though I can’t find any evidence that Thompson’s shoe was ever actually developed and released.
Converse apparently made a better offer than Doc Martin to Courtney Love in securing Cobain’s likeness for this shoe line. When an ad campaign by Doc Martin appeared that featured Cobain in a pair of their iconic boots, Love released a statement in which she said it was “outrageous that a company is allowed to commercially gain from such a despicable use of her husband’s picture.” I guess it’s not as despicable if she’s getting a cut of the action.
So, the question is: is this cool or does it suck? Is it cool that once marginal artists (Cobain excluded) are now being honored left and right by mainstream culture? Or does it suck that subversive culture is consistently co-opted and neutered for corporate profit?
Casimir Pulaski was a hero of the American Revultionary War. Born in Poland on March 4, 1747, according to Wikipedia, he “is known for his contributions to the US military at the time by training its soldiers and cavalry.” George Washington loved him.
Here in Illinois, Pulaski Day is a state holiday celebrated on the first Monday in March. Chicago schools, libraries, and government offices are closed. Woo hoo!
I first heard this song while flipping through radio stations in West Michigan, and was hooked as soon as I heard the very first line: “He was sittin’ at the bar, sippin’ a Regular Coke.” Not a Rum & Coke, certainly not a Diet Coke, not even a Classic Coke. Nope, a Regular Coke. I love that. The video is good too. From the 2007 Warner Bros albums, Pure BS.
A couple members of the Glorious Noise posse had work parties for their day jobs last night. Since we’re all kind of newbies at this whole “alcohol consumption” thing, some of us aren’t feeling our best today.
So this post goes out to all the working stiffs who occasionally indulge in one (or two… or three… or…) too many on a Thursday night. The number one rule for work parties is you’re allowed to get as drunk as you want so long as you’re able to make it to work the next morning and pretend you don’t feel like you’re going to die.
I am posting this for no other reason than because i think it is pure genius. Not only is it maybe the funniest commercial I’ve ever seen, but it actually makes me want to research who the fuck Vern Fonk is. Now that’s good marketing.
The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There’s also a negative side.
–Hunter S. Thompson
Three years ago today Dr. Hunter S. Thompson exited the world with a single shot to the head. He went out as he lived: on his terms.
As you’d expect to find with any unexpected death of a beloved person, there was some confusion, anger, and great sadness around the GLONO HQ when the news broke. Ultimately, we all came to accept reality and even respect Hunter’s decision. I can’t really emphasize the influence his writing has had on GLONO. Even before we launched our own National Affairs desk, POLJUNK, Hunter S. Thompson haunted the tone and humor we strive for at Glorious Noise. Just as he blurred the lines between straight journalism, fiction, and memoirs, we strive to bridge the gap between objective rock critic and the emotional fan.
As we just celebrated the seventh anniversary of Glorious Noise, we can thank Dr. Thompson for the inspiration that made it happen and keeps us going.
Indie label, TVT Records, has laid off a gang of people and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, CMJ reports.
“We reduced our staff,” executive VP Paul Burgess said. “It’s a dark day here at TVT and a lot of great people have lost their jobs, but we intend to move forward through the reorganization and hope to continue to be a leading independent label.”
Singles and albums, from Default, Ying Yang Twins, Ambulance LTD and Memphis rapper Yo Gott are still expected to be released and TVT is considering teaming with a digital distribution network to pump up revenue.
Recent legal issues and some high profile dust-ups with artists on its roster, including GLONO faves The Brian Jonestown Massacre, have led to tough times for the label that brought you albums from Guided By Voices and NIN. Burgess says that the reorganization is not death knocking at its door but it’s hard to imagine an indie pulling out of the fire in today’s market, especially one that markets predominantly to kids who don’t think twice about downloading their favorite artist, nevermind what they think about the label who fronts the cash for that artist.
I hate all the Yoko hate. I think it’s misguided and generally racist and sexist hogwash. She didn’t break up the Beatles and she didn’t dupe John Lennon. Yoko does occasionally makes some really odd and heavy handed legal moves and this week’s action might just take the cake.
In what appears to be yet another overzealous attempt to protect the legacy (or more likely, the value) of her late husband’s name, Yoko Ono has filed suit against singer/songwriter Lennon Murphy for performing under the stage name “Lennon.” This despite the singer’s claim that she actually consulted Ono about the matter early in her career. Update:It now appears that Yoko merely sought to stop Murphy from getting the exclusive right to the name Lennon for performance purposes.
The NME reports that Ono apparently made no objection at the time but is now stating that Murphy “fraudulently” registered the name as a trademark.
She also added that Murphy’s use of late husband John Lennon’s name is “tarnishment” towards the deceased member.
Caught this lovely song from Seattle born and LA raised Alison Sudol on Letterman this week. The 22 year old songwriter lists British bands Aqualung, Radiohead, Coldplay and Keane as influences but I find this song more engaging than just about anything those sad sacks have done.
Detroit’s Metro Times has a great two-part feature by Bill Holdship on the life, death and strange resurrection of America’s only rock and roll magazine, Creem. The first part, Sour CREEM, traces its origins from the Cass Corridor through its heyday at the 120-acre Walled Lake compound, “where all the staff lived communally on the farm in one big house,” and beyond…
[Lester] Bangs and [Dave] Marsh got into a fistfight so bad one day that Marsh ended up with a gash in his head. Seems the tidier Marsh, tired of Lester’s dog pooping everywhere, placed the dung on Bangs’ typewriter. Strangely, their relationship was much better from that day forward.
Part Two is up now: CREEMed, wherein a new CREEM anthology results in a battle over the magazine’s legacy between its original ’70s staffers and the crew that ran the magazine in the ’80s through its 1988 demise.