This Week In Music 16th September 2021

A weekly update on all things music, advertising, and technology coming straight to you from Anthony Vanger at MassiveMusic. #TWIM

ARTIST OF THE WEEK: BLEACHERS

Jack Antonoff is a musical prodigy. He burst onto the scene in 2012 with his global smash hit “We are young” and has not stopped penning hits ever since. He has co-written and produced a number of tracks for Taylor Swift, Lorde, and Lana del Rey, earning five Grammys in the process. He is a multi-instrumentalist. His music is like a combination of a John Hughes movie and early E-Street band Springsteen. In fact, the Boss has appeared with Antonoff in videos and in the studio, becoming something of a mentor to the 37-year-old fellow New Jersey native. His latest solo project, Bleachers, is the closest thing to Springsteen-style rock, weaving tales of ordinary people into free-flowing and infectious Americana rock arrangements. Another interesting layer to Antonoff’s style is his slightly “nerdy” persona. Antonoff has spoken publicly about his struggles with depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder. With his goggle black glasses and Grease-era jeans, T-shirt, and cardigan, the singer is asking us to re-evaluate what it means to be a rock star.

@jackantonoff @thebleachers @bleachers

#jackantonoff #thebleachers #bleachers #folklore #masseduction #weareyoung #1989 #newjersey #brucespringsteen #theestreetband #brucespringsteenandtheestreetband #grammys #lanadelrey #taylorswift #lorde

AD OF THE WEEK: UBER EATS

It’s a no-brainer for Ad of the Week when there is a spot feating Lil Nas and Elton John. Lil Nas X is a multitalented entertainer who is especially skilled at two things: marketing and turning pop culture legends into collaborators. One of those icons is Elton John, who recently joined the rapper on a new song that will appear on both artists’ upcoming albums.

Now, the pair has brought their budding friendship to the advertising world through a recent extension of Uber Eats “Tonight I’ll Be Eating” campaign. Created in collaboration with agency Special Group U.S., the series of 15- and 30-second ads peek in on Lil Nas X and Elton John as they hang out while exchanging outfits and delivery orders. The range in their food preferences is meant to showcase the variety of Uber Eats’ network of restaurants.

The campaign is fun, fresh and tasty – which Uber hopes is just like the food it delivers.

US RECORDED MUSIC INDUSTRY GREW BY 27% IN THE FIRST HALF OF 2021

The recorded music industry in the US has grown by 27% in the first half of the year according to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

As per a mid-year report published by the RIAA earlier this week, at retail value, $7.1B was generated by the industry throughout the year so far, growing from $5.1B at the beginning of 2020. The share of these revenues that rights holders claimed also increased by 25% to $4.6B, up from $3.7B in 2020.

Streaming continues to grow and dominate the market, which is responsible for 84% of revenue for recorded music, with paid subscriptions earning $4.6B. While CD vinyl sales continue to grow rapidly, with physical sales of music increasing by 43.9% for CDs and 94% for vinyl.

There was an average of 82 million paid subscriptions in the first half of the year, with this figure not taking into account how many subscribers there are, but instead how many subscriptions were made, so the market of paid subscriptions is potentially larger than this.

The report comes at a time where tensions between streaming services and musicians are at an all-time high, with artists feeling that they are not adequately compensated for their work by streaming services.

APPLE MUSIC IS NOW USING SHAZAM TECHNOLOGY TO IDENTIFY TRACKS IN DJ MIXES SO THAT RIGHTSHOLDERS GET PAID

Apple Music has rolled out a new process that uses Shazam technology to identify tracks in DJ mixes in order to pay all the rightsholders whose music appears in a mix.

The identification process has been developed in coordination with major and independent labels and the music streaming platform is also working with DJs, as well as DJ mix suppliers like festivals, clubs and promoters.

Thousands of mixes are already available on Apple Music on a dedicated DJ mix category page. DJ mixes have been streamed 300 million times to date on Apple Music and over 3m of the platform’s subscribers are engaging with DJ mixes each month.

DE LA SOUL FINALLY OWNS ALL THE RIGHTS TO THEIR MASTERS

Talib Kweli happily revealed that De La Soul finally “owns all the rights to their masters” for the first time in years.

Taking to Instagram to make the announcement, he shared that he received confirmation from Maseo himself. “After years of being taken advantage by the recording industry in the worst possible ways, De La Soul now owns all the rights to their masters and is in full control of the amazing music they have created,” Kweli wrote. “Let’s salute Plugs 1, 2 and 3 for sticking to their guns and showing us that we can all beat the system if we come together as a community. Let’s hear it for black ownership of black art! Congratulations fellas…”

Earlier this June, it was reported that Reservoir Media “already reached out to De La Soul and will work together to the bring the catalog and the music back to the fans.” The company previously acquired the catalog of Tommy Boy Records — the original label De La Soul was signed to — for a whopping $100 million USD.

Take a look at Talib Kweli’s post below and keep your eyes peeled for De La Soul’s return to streaming.

ROLAND RELEASES LIMITED EDITION MERCH IN HONOUR OF 808 DAY

Roland has launched a limited edition run of merch to mark this year’s 808 Day, which took place on August 8th.

Among the items for sale in honor of the iconic TR-808 drum machine are 88 bomber jackets (pictured above), which are priced at $808 each. Each jacket is numbered.

There are also 808-emblazoned T-shirts, hoodies, and wireless over-ear headphones, available in both black and white.

You can browse the full run of merch here.

Read More