Recent Posts in industry
May 17, 2013
It's Black Friday at The Village Voice:
The planned layoffs at the Village Voice, which caused its brand-new editor-in-chief and deputy to quit in protest, went down this morning regardless, Gawker reports, and included legendary gossip columnist Michael Musto and veteran theater critic Michael Feingold, both of whom had already filed forthcoming pieces for the paper. Food critic Robert Sietsema was also let go. "So many people have come out to offer their love (and opportunities)," Musto told Hamilton Nolan. "My brand will be feistier than ever." We don't doubt it. The Voice, on the other hand ... - [Intelligencer]Michael Musto had been with the iconic NYC alt-weekly since 1984. Also leaving, The Voice from its longtime Cooper Sq. offices.
May 10, 2013
More changes at the storied Village Voice. A pair of editors handed in their resignations yesterday...
Will Bourne, who became editor last November, and Jessica Lustig, the deputy editor since January, met with the staff at 11 a.m. on Thursday to announce their departure. In a phone interview, Mr. Bourne said that Christine Brennan, executive editor of Voice Media Group, had told them to lay off, or drastically reduce the roles of, five employees on the 20-person staff. Rather than carry out the cuts, he and Ms. Lustig resigned and left immediately, in the middle of closing next week's paper.Bourne commented to the New York Times that he was told that the "bloodletting had come to an end" when he came on board and that he would not "preside over further layoffs."
The Voice subsequently denied the layoffs, but insisted that "further structural and staffing changes" were required.
April 25, 2013
the singer was also a male model...
"In April, they signed to NY label Frenchkiss. "We liked that Frenchkiss seemed to understand the semantics of being in a band." They are currently finishing up writing their debut album to be released this fall. Both the label and the band are thrilled for this amazing new partnership. Frenchkiss Records head, Syd Butler exclaims, "We believe this band is ready to take over the world... "Right now the band, who played Brooklyn Bowl the other day, have just two upcoming dates, both with the Vaccines (who they've played with before).
UPDATE: The Drowners are playing Pianos on May 8th.
Those dates are listed along with a video below...
March 7, 2013
Sad news: Williamsburg, Brooklyn record store Sound Fix is closing and its final day, appropriately, will be April 20 (Record Store Day). Whiskey Brooklyn, which is next door, will then expand into their space. Opened in 2004, Sound Fix was originally located on Bedford @ N11 location, but moved to it's current 44 Berry St. location in 2009. If anyone is interested in buying Sound Fix -- the business, not the space, obviously -- they can reach out to the owner via contact information on Sound Fix's website.
January 30, 2013
Vinyl will never die, but at this may help put some of those ultra-rare releases into your pocket and not just on your turntable:
California-based mega-retailer Amoeba Music, the last big record store on the block, has moved into the digital age with both feet, with its inauguration of a revamped website. And possibly the most intriguing element of that site, and a direct reflection of Ameoba's dig-deeper philosophy, is the so-called Vinyl Vaults section -- thousands of rare and out-of-print LPs, 78s and 45s that flow through the company's three outlets in any given week -- now available for sale via download.The number of titles grow daily, with more than one thousand already on hand. If it's anything like Amoeba's stock right now, expect some rare/obscure LPs in there. Check out Amoeba's "vinyl vault" here.
"We've been digitizing a lot," says Jim Henderson, who owns Amoeba along with partners Marc Weinstein, Karen Pearson and Dave Prinz. "What you see now is the lost-between-the-cracks, underappreciated, undervalued (music) from dead labels, (obscure) artists, stuff that we really stand behind. It's mostly in the rock genre, with a lot of jazz, a lot of blues, some country, some spoken word. There are some oddities for sure." -[Variety]
November 16, 2012
This letter, signed by a ton of artists and pictured above, is set to appear in an ad in Billboard:
We are big fans of Pandora. That's why we helped give the company a discount on rates for the past decade.Pink Floyd, Down, Primus, Dead Kennedys (with our without Jello?), Nas, Alabama, Sheryl Crow and many more big major label names signed this (or someone signed it on their behalf). Check out the full list below, and head to fairpayforartists.com for more information on their point of view..
Pandora is now enjoying phenomenal success as a Wall Street company. Skyrocketing growth in revenues and users. We celebrate that. At the same time, the music community is just now beginning to gain its footing in the new digital world.
Pandora's principal asset is the music.
Why is the company asking Congress once again to step in and gut the royalties that thousands of musicians rely upon? That's not fair, and that's not how partners work together.
Congress has many pressing issues to consider, but this is not one of them. Let's work this out as partners and continue to bring fans the great musical experience they rightly expect.
The issue is that Pandora is supporting the Internet Radio Fairness Act which they say will "help end the long-standing discrimination against internet radio". Artists are mad because that possibly means less money for them, but Pandora and other Internet radio providers argue they can't stay in business the way things are now.
November 2, 2012
In a post titled "Hurricanes Are Horrible Things", the Translator Audio studio in Brooklyn have announced that "100%" of their studio was lost to Hurricane Sandy, including "two businesses and 20 years of collected gear". The studio, located in Gowanus/Park Slope, recently recorded with names like Zozobra and Man's Gin, and have a rap sheet that includes the likes of Unsane, Rosetta, Citizens Arrest, Cave In, Keelhaul, Melvins, and many many others. Owner Andrew Schneider writes more about the loss below.
by Andrew Sacher
Death Grips at Le Poisson Rouge last month (more by Amanda Hatfield)
When Death Grips allegedly released their new album, NO LOVE DEEP WEB, for free on their website because their label, Epic Records, wouldn't give it a release date, many people were wary that the whole thing was a bit of a publicity stunt. Then on Wednesday (10/31), Death Grips posted to their facebook a screenshot of what appeared to be an email from Epic stating that the band violated their contract and were to remove the album from the internet immediately. They wrote to PItchfork to explain that posting the email was to prove the NO LOVE DEEP WEB leak was not a publicity stunt. Of course, that email itself could have been another publicity stunt. But at that this point it appears there was in fact some truth to the news surrounding the album's release, because Pitchfork points to an unsurprising letter from Epic Records stating:
Epic Records is a music first company that breaks new artists. That is our mission and our mandate. Unfortunately, when marketing and publicity stunts trump the actual music, we must remind ourselves of our core values. To that end, effective immediately, we are working to dissolve our relationship with Death Grips. We wish them well.The whole thing makes you wonder if Death Grips' plan from the start was to sign with a major label just so they could publicly screw them over. They never quite seemed like the type of band who would benefit from one to begin with. And It's also worth noting that the band didn't only leak the album for free (tons of people would have done that anyway), but they also released it under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license, which allows anyone to use the album's material in commercials, television, film, etc, or even press and sell the album themselves. Assuming Epic Records funded the recording of NO LOVE DEEP WEB, it was only a matter of time before the announcement that they were dropping Death Grips came.
The full album stream of NO LOVE DEEP WEB is below...
November 1, 2012
Red Hook on Monday / Fairway throwing out food (via Red Hook Recovery)
Brooklyn non-profit "post-classical" label New Amsterdam Records released the new album by accapella group Roomfull of Teeth on Tuesday, which should have been the biggest news of the week for them. But instead, Hurricane Sandy had other plans, making a total mess of their new Red Hook headquarters:
Despite the many hours we spent on Sunday preparing for the storm-stacking furniture on cinder-blocks and moving everything we could to higher ground-our space was flooded with almost four feet of polluted sea water. As a result, about 70% of our catalog of CDs has been destroyed-CDs we hold on behalf of our artists (we do not own them). Literally ALL of our financial records were destroyed, including our back-up hard-drive. Sewage, gas, spilled paint thinner, and bleach all blended with seawater, creating a toxic mess. A mess that is sure to corrode our newly installed drywall, kitchen cabinets, and office furniture. Even the basics like doors and plumbing are compromised and will need to be replaced. Musical equipment, amps, and priceless vintage synthesizers were also destroyed, along with countless personal items, clothing, two couches, records, and other furniture. We will need to move swiftly to acquire industrial dehumidifiers and hire professional mold-cleaners to help us combat the high risk of toxic mold. We have yet to assess the damage to our donated Steinway grand piano which we wrapped with a plastic tarp prior to the storm; the water mark from the flood was drawn inches from the piano's lid.If you'd like to donate to New Amsterdam Records' relief fund, visit their donation page. "Your donation will be fully tax deductible, and will be returned with heartfelt thanks and supreme gratitude."
Over the last few months, we've invested countless hours preparing our space, and thousands of dollars renovating it -- money and time we were hoping to make up for with a series of public events and private fundraisers this fall and winter. Now that plan is in severe jeopardy. Our financial future is intimately tied to our space; we were "all in," so to speak. After sharing news of our plight on Facebook, literally hundreds of you have offered to help. The outpouring of love and concern from our larger community has been staggering and truly inspiring. At the suggestion of a number of NewAm friends and artists, we have decided to create this page -- an official home for our Hurricane Relief Fund. New Amsterdam's label arm operates on a non-profit-model that distributes 80% of album revenues directly to artists, so while we encourage the community to continue to buy albums and help support our artists who were also all affected by this disaster, the organization itself will receive the most benefit from direct contributions.
Red Hook was crushed by Hurricane Sandy and is still without power. The Red Hook Fairway, right on the water's edge, was pretty much destroyed by flooding. Red Hook Recovery has been set up to offer assistance to the neighboorhood and you can donate relief funds there as well.
In similar news, there is a benefit concert tonight at Union Hall for the neighborhood outreach program Red Hook Initiative with performances by Riot Fox and Mount Sharp. You can also donate directly to RHI here.
September 24, 2012
The owners of Village Voice Media (and the original founders of one of that company's 13 alt-weekly newspapers) have decided to sell all their publications in order to distance the news from their controversial adult services website. Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin will transfer their nationwide network of alternative papers to a new company and sell control to several of those papers' current publishers and editors. No terms were disclosed. The roster of publications includes The Village Voice in New York; SF Weekly and LA Weekly in California; Denver's Westword; and the Phoenix New Times, among others. Lacey and Larkin founded the New Times when they were students at Arizona State University in 1970, before slowly acquiring the other properties in the '80s and '90s.The newly formed Voice Media Group, a holding company out of Denver, will take control of the weeklies. Backpage has profited heavily from the sale of adult ads, and has come under heavy fire with allegations of prostitution disguised as "adult services."
However, the pair will retain ownership of Backpage.com, a classified ads website that has faced several lawsuits and criminal complaints due to its adult-services advertising. -[The Atlantic Wire]