A weekly update on all things music, advertising and technology coming straight to you from Anthony Vanger at MassiveMusic. #TWIM
ARTIST OF THE WEEK: SHARON VAN ETTEN
WHEN I FIRST heard this artist, her laconic singing style and retro 80s sound was deja vu to me. But she kept popping up on the radar of “Best of..” lists in 2019 and I reconsidered. With shades of Patti Smith and Debbie Harry, Van Etten is one of the grown-ups amongst the current crop of up-and-coming female pop artists. Stepping mysteriously onto the iron steps of a Brooklyn subway, wearing a full length leather coat, she strikes a French New Wave Cinema pose in her video for her single “Seventeen”. As she wrote on Twitter as an introduction to her new single, Van Etten said “It is with tears in my eyes that I share with you my love letter to NYC. Places I’ve lived, lost and found myself, let go of and embraced. Thank you to everyone that held me up over the years.”
Ed Note: The video is from Jimmy Kimmel as You Tube does not let you share videos on Linkedin – so you have to check out the video on YT if you want to see it.
AD OF THE WEEK: RIDLEY SCOTT CREATES HENNESSEY SPOT
Sir Ridley Scott, the legendary director of Alien, Blade Runner and the Oscar-winning Gladiator, has been lured back to film a 4-minute spot for high-end cognac Hennessy. Not sure if it was the money or the prospect of a hefty supply of French brandy that retails at £150 a bottle, but the 81-year old filmmaker has pulled out all the stops and recreated many of the moods and textures of his last films, such as Prometheus and The Martian.
Many of the UK’s leading helmsmen started out directing commercials. Alan Parker (Mississipi Burning, Fame, Midnight Express), Adrian Lynne (91/2 weeks, Fatal Attraction, Flashdance) and of course Scott, all worked extensively in the ad trade, creating a slick style of advertising that was lapped up first by the US ad agencies and then Hollywood. Scott famously directed the classic 1984 Apple Computer Superbowl ad. This one, from DDB Paris, looks nice enough, but with only 26,000 views, it may struggle to make back its investment.
Childish Gambino makes Grammy history and Highlights, who took home Album of the Year, Best New Artist
Album of the Year went to Kacey Musgraves, pictured here, and we congratulate her, but a special mention has to be made for Childish Gambino whose song “This is America” won Grammys for song and record of the year on Sunday, becoming the first rap song to win the prestigious awards. And we at TWIM are very happy because we started writing about him a long time ago. Just in case you never got to see the video and the sheer power of music and film, it is here for you to (enjoy).
Album of the Year – Kacey Musgraves – Golden Hour; Record of the Year – Childish Gambino – This Is America; Best New Artist – Dua Lipa; Best Rap Album – Cardi B – Invasion of Privacy; Best Rap Song – Drake – God’s Plan; Song of the Year – Childish Gambino – This Is America; Best Rock Album – Greta Van Fleet – From the Fires; Best Reggae Album – Sting & Shaggy – 44/876; Best Dance/Electronic Album – Justice – Woman Worldwide; Best Pop Vocal Album – Ariana Grande – Sweetener; Best Music Film – Quincy Jones – Quincy; Best Music Video – Childish Gambino – This Is America
PEARL JAM APPOINTED AMBASSADORS FOR RECORD STORE DAY (RSD) 2019
Record Store Day has revealed Pearl Jam as its 2019 ambassador. The event is scheduled to return on Saturday, April 13, 2019. Last year’s ambassadors were Run The Jewels in the US and, in the UK, Record Store Day 2018 saw album sales increase by 33% year-on-year, according to Official Charts Company data for April 21.
Record Store Day organisers reported an overall increase in unit sales of 7% year-on-year as consumers moved towards album releases. It’s estimated that 60,000 LPs and 30,000 vinyl singles were sold.
UMG TO ACQUIRE INGROOVES, SET TO EXPAND GLOBAL DISTRIBUTION BUSINESS
Universal Music Group is to fully acquire Ingrooves Music Group. The major has been a minority investor in Ingrooves since 2006. It has now agreed to acquire the shares it does not already own in the independent music distribution and marketing company.
After the transaction closes, Ingrooves CEO Bob Roback will continue to head up the company as a standalone unit within UMG.
Since launching in 2002, Ingrooves has provided independent labels, artists and other content owners with analytics, rights management services, and marketing solutions. The company combines its technology platform and data-driven insights with a team of global music marketing experts.
The acquisition of Ingrooves is expected to close before the end of the current quarter. It complements UMG’s existing distribution and marketing relationships with the global independent music community, as well as bolstering the major’s distribution business as parent Vivendi looks to sell up to 50%.
MICKEY MOUSE X BEATS HEADPHONES
Celebrating 90 years of Mickey Mouse
The wireless Solo 3 headphones come with a custom felt case inspired by the materials from Mickey Mouse ear hats, along with a collectible pin and decal sticker to honour the collaboration.
Buy them here
Written by Anthony Vanger
Additional reporting by Adam “Badger” Woolf
Artwork by Gustav Balderdash