Category Archives: Shorties

Rhymefest vs. Michael Jackson

Man In The MirrorGreg Kot (of all people!) tipped us to a legally dubious project by South Side Chicago rapper Rhymefest and producer Mark Ronson:

The release is musical contraband; it flouts copyright law and freely dips into the Jackson back catalog for source material, including a trove of audio interviews. It rearranges this material into a fascinating virtual collaboration between two artists of different generations who have never met. Gimmicky as it sounds, sparks fly. Jackson hasn’t had such a provocative and inspired collaborator since he was working with producer Quincy Jones — back when “Thriller” reigned.


Rhymefest – “No Sunshine” [prod. by Emile]

Rhymefest – “Man In The Mirror” (ft Michael Jackson)

Continue reading Rhymefest vs. Michael Jackson

Silos Bass Player Dead at 45

Drew Glackin, instrumentalist and bassist for Bloodshot Recording artists, The Silos, passed away suddenly on Saturday, January 5th. According to Bloodshot and his band, he was unaware of an overactive thyroid condition that led to severe heart damage.

A press release from the label included this message from the band:

Drew was adored around the world and his larger than life spirit and contagious jovial energy touched everyone he met, everywhere he went. He was a musician of the highest talent and made his mark in countless bands, record albums, and many thousands of live performances. He will be sorely missed and the memories of his music, his great humor, and his magnanimous generosity of spirit and love will be with us forever.

Information on a fund to support funeral costs after the jump…

Continue reading Silos Bass Player Dead at 45

Post Admits It Fucked Up RIAA Story

Doh!Remember that Washington Post article that everybody freaked out about a couple weeks ago? The one about how the RIAA was going after personal use?

We didn’t link to it here at GLONO because we knew the whole premise of the article was incorrect. In that particular case, the dude was not getting busted just because he ripped a CD, but rather because he ripped it into his Shared Folder for Kazaa. Which is a big difference. And now the Post has (finally) issued a correction.

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Saul Williams Update: The Numbers

The Inevitable Rise and Liberation of NiggyTardust!We previously posted about how Saul Williams and Trent Reznor were collaborating on a project that was one-upping Radiohead. As a fan of Saul Williams, I had been excited about this idea, happily paid $5, and downloaded the 320kbps MP3 version of the album.

A couple months having passed, Reznor now offers up some Saul Williams follow-up and facts:

As of 1/2/08,
154,449 people chose to download Saul’s new record.
28,322 of those people chose to pay $5 for it, meaning:
18.3% chose to pay. […]

If 33,897 people went out and bought Saul’s last record 3 years ago (when more people bought CDs) and over 150K – five times as many – sought out this new record, that’s great – right?

I have to assume the people knowing about this project must either be primarily Saul or NIN fans, as there was very little media coverage outside our direct influence. If that assumption is correct – that most of the people that chose to download Saul’s record came from his or my own fan-base – is it good news that less than one in five feel it was worth $5? I’m not sure what I was expecting but that percentage – primarily from fans – seems disheartening.

Little media coverage? Oh really?

Continue reading Saul Williams Update: The Numbers

Britney’s Mom Loses Book Deal

Reuters says:

A Christian publisher said on Wednesday it has called off a parenting book written by Lynne Spears — the mother of troubled pop star Britney Spears and her pregnant 16-year-old sister, Jamie Lynn. […]

The working title for the book was “Pop Culture Mom: A Real Story of Fame and Family in a Tabloid World.” Described by the publisher as “a parenting book that’s going to have faith elements to it,” it had been set for publication on Mother’s Day in May 2008.

Wow. What a shame that this book will never see the light of day. As a new parent I’m always looking for good tips on how to raise a happy, well-adjusted, responsible kid. And who could argue with the results that Lynne Spears got? She clearly knows what she’s doing.

Now I don’t want to get into the whole parental blame game here, because heaven knows all parents make their share of mistakes. And if my kid ever knocks up a girl or shaves his head or builds a top secret sex room, I wouldn’t want strangers writing crap about what a lousy dad I was.

Then again, I’m not planning on writing a parenting book for a Christian publisher.

Billboard’s 2007 Year End Charts

Billboard has released The Year In Charts 2007, looking at the “chart year,” which runs from December 2006 to November 2007. The fact that the majority of the albums on these charts were actually released in 2006—or eariler—doesn’t seem to bother anybody (except the nitpricks at Percolator).

Some interesting positions from the Year-end Albums – The Billboard 200 chart:


12 GRADUATION Kanye West

14 LOVE The Beatles

24 BACK TO BLACK Amy Winehouse

66 MY DECEMBER Kelly Clarkson

76 ICKY THUMP The White Stripes



116 YEAR ZERO Nine Inch Nails

118 ALRIGHT, STILL… Lily Allen





154 BEGIN TO HOPE Regina Spektor


165 ZEITGEIST The Smashing Pumpkins



190 NEON BIBLE Arcade Fire

198 SKY BLUE SKY Wilco


No surprise, I suppose, that most of the halfway-decent albums are in the bottom half of the chart… But congrats, anyway, to all who charted!

Lots more year-end charts.

Five Years Ago: 8 Mile-Inspired “Battles” Get Nuts

Five years ago today, the comments page for Johnny’s review of 8 Mile got so out of control that we had to break it off into a separate page because it was crashing our server: Your Comments on 8 Mile Is Worth the Hype.

And then the insanity continued on our message boards: Eminem’s 8 Mile Battles…and yours.

Looking back today, it cracks me up that we attempted to moderate these lunatics at all. Now, I wish we would have just let the crazies go on forever. What a snapshot of 2002 internet culture. Online rap battles. Wow.

Major Label Execs Are Willfully Clueless

Universal Music Group’s CEO Doug Morris talks to Wired and admits he doesn’t know anything (or care) about technology.

Morris insists there wasn’t a thing he or anyone else could have done differently. “There’s no one in the record company that’s a technologist,” Morris explains. “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?”

Personally, I would hire a vet. But to Morris, even that wasn’t an option. “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.” Morris’ almost willful cluelessness is telling. “He wasn’t prepared for a business that was going to be so totally disrupted by technology,” says a longtime industry insider who has worked with Morris. “He just doesn’t have that kind of mind.”

Two responses to this. One is from former Reprise Records president Howie Klein: How To Destroy A Profitable Industry In Just A Few Easy Steps wherein he claims to have presented a pre-iTunes app to Warners only to have it shot down by the “technology people Morris was complaining about.” The other response is from a former major label employee “at the bottom” who says it’s the organizational structure of the industry that prevents the young lackeys who have a clue from having a positive impact on the business.

All three are worth reading. The overall vibe is surprisingly hopeless. Everybody seems to accept the idea that the industry fucked up and is now doomed. This is something we’ve been saying for years, but to hear it from people like Morris and Klein is a little disconcerting…

Fanista: Amway Is Selling Music

Would you like to hear about an incredible, life-changing opportunity? Just say no.

As a native Grand Rapidian, I am no stranger to the Amway business model. While none of my friends have ever gotten sucked into a pyramid scheme, pretty much everybody I know has a relative who has worked for the notorious soap behemoth. Turns out now Amway is getting into the ever-blossoming music industry! The New York Times has the scoop.

Here are the interesting tidbits:

• If your friend joins and buys something, identifying you as the reason for joining, you get 5 percent of the sale in cash or credit.

• Alticor (a/k/a Amway) is Fanista’s sole financial backer.

• Alticor generates about $6 billion in annual revenue.

• Amway pleaded guilty in 1983 to defrauding the Canadian government and paid $25 million in fines.

More after the jump…

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Jermaine Dupri proves the industry is doomed

R&B producer Jermaine Dupri is pissed that Apple allows customers to purchase songs individually from its iTunes music store:

Soulja Boy sold almost 4 million singles and only 300,000 albums! We let the consumer have too much of what they want, too soon, and we hurt ourselves. Back in the day when people were excited about a record coming out we’d put out a single to get the ball going and if we sold a lot of singles that was an indication we’d sell a lot of albums. But we’d cut the single off a few weeks before the album came out to get people to wait and let the excitement build. When I put out Kris Kross we did that. We sold two million singles, then we stopped. Eventually we sold eight million albums!

Did consumers complain? Maybe so. But at what point does any business care when a consumer complains about the money? Why do people not care how we – the people who make music – eat? If they just want the single, they gotta get the album. That was how life was. Today we should at least have that option.

I love the fact that he uses Kris Kross as his example. That album is exactly the reason why people don’t value albums. One great single and a bunch of mediocre filler. (Actually, Totally Krossed Out had three good songs: “Jump,” “Warm It Up,” and “Lil Boys in Da Hood,” but the rest was pointless.)

Continue reading Jermaine Dupri proves the industry is doomed