Music Management Firm working with artists Syd and Taylor Carson. Giving you news, reviews, and updating you on our latest tours. We also give you the latest and greatest news from the industries top Music Blogs.
Congratulations to Syd for the launch of his new band (with friends of Horizons and fellow Co-Op-ers Patrick Thomas and Lisa Piccirillo)! Visit the new homepage and support their Kickstarter campaign.
Horizons Management is proud to announce the release of Taylor Carson’s long-awaited new record “Defending The Name” on September 14, 2010.
We will be joining Taylor and the band on the road for cd release celebrations in New York at Rockwood Music Hall (9/9), in Boston at Johnny D’s (9/10) and in DC at IOTA (9/11)!
This project has been in development for over two years and we are thrilled to have walked that road with Taylor Carson.
Horizons Management is excited to announce the release of the first single from Taylor Carson’s new album, Defending The Name. ”Someone To Love” is inspired by a true story of love and loss.
Pick it up here.
Horizons is helping organize a Red Carpet event at the Artivist Film Festival around Love Light & Melody’s groundbreaking documentary film, Day Of Light. The film will premier at the legendary Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, California and will be followed by a Q&A with the cast and crew and a concert with Braddigan in the courtyard! Info
Horizons announces that booking client Adam Ezra will share the stage with Robert Randolph & the Family Band at the Belly Up in Aspen, Colorado on December 12! Not in Colorado? Check out Adam Ezra Group’s CD Release show at The Paradise in Boston on January 23, 2010.
Horizons Management artist Syd reunites with supergroup Who’s That Pack bandmates Tim Blane, Chad Perrone, Patrick Thomas and Todd Martin for east coast dates in February 2010. Dates in Boston and New York City have been announced, more coming soon. Info
Horizons Management joins HomeVibe Presents and Pennies For Peace to produce the Journey Of Hope concert event. Featuring Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Greg Mortensen and creating awareness for global service NGOs, the event drew 6000 people from all over the country to the infamous Red Rocks Amphitheater in September 2009.
Well, not sure where to start this after last nights tremendous loss of talent and the King of the Pop music era. he was a man who helped shape what pop music was, what being a superstar artist was. He also showed us what it was to be an artist who used their music as a platform promoting causes near and dear to their heart.
Other than the loss of a pop icon, there were quite a few articles going around that peaked my interest but out of all of the articles there were two that I think were really important especially this first one.
If you haven’t been paying attention or didn’t know anything about this, there is currently a bill that is in Congress called the Performance Rights Act. Ther Performance Rights Act is basically a revision to what has been long standing as giving artists performance royalties for their music being played over the air on the radio. Though the article I read is about why this Act is a bad thing, of the many reasons 2 stood out, #2 states how this will harm independent artists and will lead to the long standing issue that was a problem with radio to begin with, Payola.
This will inevitably lead to a problem with half the radio stations not being able to pay the royalties, or if they can will lead to one song/per hour with the rest surrounded by commercials. Is that what it would come to? Radio that is only commercials or talk radio with a song or two every hour or so. Ugh its already bad enough as it is, that is if you even listen to the radio anymore, what with XM, Sirius Radio that seriously cuts down on the commericals, supposedly.
The other article I found was posted on Twitter by Martin Atkins and I found it a very significant/interesting read. This article was about a band, who yes, is signed to a major label, was able to make $19,000 via twitter. This was through a mixture of Twitter Auctions, Selling a T-shirt developed in a Friday night hang out session on Twitter, and through a Twitter Donation-Only Gig. This is a very interesting model that might be an idea to look at for future marketing as it could lead to as they call it a “virtual flash mob”. Could be interesting to see how this would be used .
Thats all I have for now will try to post more of the interesting articles I found over the weekend!
For those who aren’t familiar with the Performance Rights Act, it is a bill that was introduced in February that would require radio stations to pay performance royalties in addition to fees they already pay to songwriters. The RIAA, along with a few big names such as Billy Corgan (pictured), is pushing this bill under the pretense that it benefits the artists and that the industry needs it to survive.
The problem is that their claims simply are not true. The Performance Rights Act would have potentially disastrous consequences across the music business, and I’ve put together a quick list that explains why.
1. The Performance Rights Act would cripple local radio
The PRA is basically a new tax on radio stations that would be paid directly to the recording industry. This fee is already being paid by Internet, satellite and cable radio stations, and has caused the untimely demise of more than one service providor since it went into effect in 2002. What makes congress think that local radio stations will be able to avoid the same fate?
Jesse Walker of ReasonOnline also pointed out recently that the fees themselves aren’t the only costs that this bill would impose on radio stations:
“The record labels are completely out of touch as to how college radio stations operate,” Warren Kozireski, president of College Broadcasters Inc., recently complained on his organization’s website. “The extensive record keeping requirements that will be required by the Copyright Royalty Board alone will add hundreds, if not thousands of dollars to the true cost of a performance fee.” It’s relatively easy to do that book-keeping if you have a narrow playlist and rarely deviate from it, as is the case with most large commercial radio stations. But if you have a library of thousands of albums and 45s, many of which were never reissued on CD, and if you allow your DJs to choose which ones they play—or even to bring in still more music from their personal collections of rare soul or jazz or bluegrass or electronica obscurities—then tracking the data suddenly becomes a full-time job.
2. The PRA hurts independent artists
I’ve heard some supporters of this bill touting that the independent artists have the most to gain. This is because the money would go to performers and copyright owners, which in the case of independent artists are the same thing. Therefore, the PRA would provide a potentially significant revenue stream for the artist. Right?
In a perfect world, maybe. But in this world playlists at major stations are chosen by advertising dollars, not DJs. Adding an additional fee for every song played will only make stations even more unwilling to take risks on unproven acts. Independent acts have a hard enough time getting on major stations – they don’t need another hurtle.
Payola, for those who don’t know, is an illegal but very common industry practice where agents of the record labels bribe radio stations to broadcast their music. As Mike Masnick of Techdirt puts it:
The most damning argument against the recording industry’s demand for money here is the fact that, for decades, the industry has (illegally) had the money go in the other direction. The system of payola has shown, quite clearly, how much the recording industry values airtime, in that it’s willing to pay radio stations to play its music.
So, can anyone explain why it’s illegal for record labels to pay radio stations to play music, but it’s okay for Congress to force radio stations to pay the record labels for playing their music? It defies common sense.
In other words, the RIAA values the promotional benefits of radio airtime so much that it’s willing to break the law and pay out large amounts of cash to get it, yet it now wants the radio stations to start paying them for the privelidge of providing this benefit. Make sense? Didn’t think so.
4. The bill is based on misinformation
According to a recent press release by the musicFIRST Coalition - a lobby group created to push for the PRA – Radio should pay performance royalties because it is the only platform that currently does not. They accuse brodcasters of believing that “AM and FM music radio stations should continue to get special treatment, that AM and FM music radio stations do not have to play by the rules, and that AM and FM music radio stations should enjoy a competitive advantage over other music platforms.”
The problem is that they are ignoring the fact that they were the ones who created this disparity. When the other platforms such as online streaming were required to pay performance royalties it had everything to do with controlling the reproduction of digital music – a problem not shared by terrestrial radio. As Jesse Walker points out, the industry’s argument “hinged on the idea that digital broadcasting is different from conventional broadcasting. Forteen years later, as it attempts to impose a performance fee on AM and FM broadcasters as well, the industry now wants to claim the channels are equivalent after all.”
5. The PRA doesn’t benefit musicians as much as the RIAA claims
I already talked about the ways that independent musicians would be hurt by the PRA, but what about bigger acts? The problem here is that the royalties would be paid to performers and copyright owners, which in most cases are the major record labels.
After the label takes its cut, there remains the issue of whether or not the rest of the fee will ever reach the artist. To quote Walker:
The Web radio experience is instructive. The institution that distributes performance fees to artists is SoundExchange, an organization that spun off from the Recording Industry Association of America in 2003. In 2007, the Houston Press noted that the group was apparently unable to locate about 25 percent of the performers on whose behalf it was allegedly acting. After perusing the list of lost musicians, the Press’s John Nova Lomax reported that “in less than five minutes of Googling, I found the official Web sites and/or MySpace pages of Fito Olivares, Goudie, Mark May, the Hollisters and Los Skarnales. What’s more, highly visible people like Cam’ron (fresh off a highly-publicized appearance on 60 Minutes), Fat Joe and Danzig are on the ‘lost’ list too.”‘
I want artists to have the ability to make a good living creating music, but this is not the bill to make that happen. The Performance Rights Act amounts to little more than a last ditch manuever by a flailing industry. What do you think? Does the bill make sense, or will it cause more harm than good?
Amanda Palmer of The Dresden Dolls and solo fame is definitely a self-promoter. But what sets her apart and makes her efforts effective is that she seemingly does it effortlessly. By letting the world into her life via blog posts, Twitter, web casts, etc and doing it with playful and rebellious tone, she has made herself worth paying attention to and supporting. The music’s not half bad either.
Palmer has been very vocal about wanting out of her label deal with Warner Music Group’s Roadrunner, and why shouldn’t she since she’s her own marketing juggernaut and has even figured out how to make money doing it. Here, from her blog, is how she made $19,000 in 10 hours by connecting with her fans on Twitter.
UPDATE: Video of Amanda on the Friday Freaks phenomenon.
using twitter i’d gathered crowds of sometimes 200 fans with a DAY’S notice to come out and meet me in public spaces (parks, mostly) where i would play ukulele, sign, hug, take pictures, eat cake, and generally hang out and connect. this was especially helpful in the cities where we’d been unable to book all-ages gigs and there were crushed teenagers who were really grateful to have a shot at connecting with me & the community of amanda/dolls fans.
i’d also been using twitter to organize ACTUAL last-minute gigs…i twittered a secret gig in LA one morning and about 350 folks showed up 5 hours later at a warehouse space….i played piano, filmed by current.tv, and then (different camera crew) did an interview with afterellen.com.
the important thing to understand here is that the fans were never part of the plan..,i basically just INVITED my fans to a press day, the press didnt’ plan it…i did.
i was going to be playing in an empty room and doing q&a with afterellen on a coach with only the camera watching.
it was like….why not tell people and do this in a warehouse instead of a hotel lobby or a blank studio? so i did.
it cost me almost nothing. the fans were psyched.
but back to the bigger, cooler story….
so there i am, alone on friday night and i make a joke on twitter (which goes out to whichever of my 30,000 followers are online):
“i hereby call THE LOSERS OF FRIDAY NIGHT ON THEIR COMPUTERS to ORDER, motherfucker.”
9:15 PM May 15th from web
one thing led to another, and the next thing you know there were thousands of us and we’d become the #1 topic trend on twitter.
zoe keating described it as a “virtual flash mob”.
the way twitter works (if you don’t have it) is that certain topics can include a hashtag (#) and if a gazillion people start making posts that include that hashtag, the topic will zoom up the charts of what people are currently discussing. it’s a cool feature.
so anyway, there we were, virtually hanging out on twitter on a friday night. very pleased with ourselves for being such a large group, and cracking jokes.
how do you “hang out” on the internet? well, we collectively came up with a list of things that the government should do for us (free government-issued sweatpants, pizza and ponies, no tax on coffee), AND created a t-shirt.
thank god my web guy sean was awake and being a loser with me on friday night because he throw up the webpage WHILE we were having our twitter party and people started ordering the shirts - that i designed in SHARPIE in realtime) and a slogan that someone suggested: “DON’T STAND UP FOR WHAT’S RIGHT, STAY IN FOR WHAT’S WRONG”. neil gaiman and wil wheaton joined our party. the fdnas felt super-special.
by the end of the night, we’d sold 200 shirts off the quickie site (paypal only) that sean had set up.
i blogged the whole story the next day and in total, in the matter of a few days, we sold over 400 shirts, for $25/ea.
we ended up grossing OVER $11,000 on the shirts.
my assistant beth had the shirts printed up ASAP and mailed them from her apartment.
total made on twitter in two hours = $11,000.
total made from my huge-ass ben-folds produced-major-label solo album this year = $0
2. WEBCAST AUCTION, $6000
a few nights after that, i blogged and twittered, announcing a “webcast auction” from my apartment.
it went from 6 pm - 9 pm, my assitant beth sat at my side and kept her eyes on incoming bids and twitter feed.
while we hocked weird goods, i sang songs and answered questions from fans. we wore kimonos and drank wine. it was a blast.
people on twitter who were tuned in re-tweeted to other fans. the word spread that it was a fun place to be and watch.
we had, at peak, about 2000 people watching the webcast.
at the suggestion of a fan early in the webcastm anyone could, on demand, send us $20 via paypal and we would chew,
sign and mail them a postcard. we sold about 70, and we read all those names at the end of the webcast and thanked those
people for supporting us. here’s how the sales broke down:
all the items were signed by moi and hand-packed by beth and kayla.
the items and highest bidders were as follows:
hilary, ukulele used on the european tour: $640
jake, “guitar hero” plastic guitar controller used in album promo shoot: $250
lary b, copy neo2 magazine, plus two post-war trade slap-bracelets & a crime-photo set: $230
devi, glass dildo, with subtley-sordid backstory: $560
liz b., “hipsters ruin everything” t-shirt, made by blake (get your very own here!!!!): $155.55
shannon m., my bill bryson book, a short history of neary everything: $280
nikki, huge metal “the establishment” sign, used at rothbury festival for the circus tent i curated: $450
j.r., purple velvet “A” dress used in the dresden dolls coin-operated boy video shoot: $400
jessie & alan: who killed amanda palmer vinyl: $100
nikki: wine bottle, auctioned BY REQUEST!!! $320
shannon w., torn-to-shit vintage stockings used in the who killed amanda palmer/ michael pope video series: $200
school-note-book break-up letter, written to amanda from jonas woolverton in 7th grade (i still haven’t emailed him about that….): $250
daryl, ANOTHER wine bottle, by request, that we had LYING AROUND: $320
reto emailed, having barely missed the wine bottle, and asked us to send him “something funny” for $129.99. we sent a heath ledger statuette.
total made on twitter in 3 hours, including the postcards, was over $6000.
again, total made on my major-label solo album this year: $0
3. TWITTER DONATION-ONLY GIG, $1800
a few days later, i twittered a guest-list only event in a recording studio in boston, to take place a week later.
the gig lasted about 5 hours, all told, with soundcheck and signing. i took mostly requests and we had a grand old time.
first come, first served. the first 200 people to ask got in, for free. i asked for donations and made about $2200 in cash.
i gave $400 back to the studio for the space and the help. we sold some weird merch. i think we should call it an even 2k.
total made at last-minute secret twitter gig, in about 5 hours = $2000
major-label record blah blah blah = $0
…..and for fun, and to thank my fans for being awesome, i’ve been doing some twitter perfomance art, including answering their questions by magic-markering my body until it’s covered, and displaying time-lapse make-up application advice….but that’s another story.
TOTAL MADE THIS MONTH USING TWITTER = $19,000
TOTAL MADE FROM 30,000 RECORD SALES = ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.
turn on, tune in, get dropped!!!!!
amanda fucking palmer
Mike has had a pretty crazy week and is looking at an even crazier weekend, so I’m taking the helm and writing this week’s Industry Digest for him. I want to do something a little different this week.
The music industry is constantly changing and evolving. With advances in technology, people will always find more ways to get music, some ways illegally. According to the Music Think Tank: Everyone Ruining the Industry blog:
A federal jury found Jammie Thomas-Rasset guilty of illegal file-sharing and fined the 32-year-old mother of four $1.92 million, the AP reports. She was found to have violated the copyrights on 24 songs and each carried an $80,000 penalty. This was the second trial of Thomas-Rasset, after an error in jury instructions in 2007 prompted a retrial. Of more than 30,000 similar cases, most settled out of court for about $3,500; Thomas-Rasset’s is the first such case to go to trial.
We’ve all done it, download songs illegally. It started with Napster. Then programs such as Kazaa, Morpheus and Limewire came on the scene. As an independent artist management company, we’ve always embraced new technology and file sharing, but on the other hand we need people to support us. If we gave away all our music, we’d have to get day jobs. True, we’re offering Taylor Carson’s full catalogue for free at http://friendsandfamily.taylorcarson.com, but sites like this and services like NoiseTrade give us the option to benefit from file sharing. We can’t put a price on gaining more fans and growing our fan base. The thing about NoiseTrade and the Friends and Family site is that you can get the music for free, but you have to tell people about it. With NoiseTrade, you have to tell 5 people to get the music for free and with the FAF site, there is no link to it anywhere, so to get the music, someone has to tell you about the site and then, hopefully, in turn, you’ll tell somebody else, and the chain continues.
In recent years, music has gone from being a service to a business. Back in the “olden days:” music was something to entertain people, now it is about making money. An artists makes music to make a living. Here at Horizons Management, we’re trying to find that middle ground, where the artist can have a career and make money, but we also want to bring music back to a service that entertains people. Music brings people of all races, ages, and ethnicities together. It has the power to bring smiles out on even the rainiest of days. There must be an agreement between the artist and the audience that says, the artist is there to entertain, but the audience must also support that artist so he can continue to do what he does. Music is something this world can’t survive without, so we must find a way to support artists so that they can keep making the soundtrack to our lives.
The link to the new story: http://www.prefixmag.com/news/illegal-file-sharing-leads-to-192-million-fine/29813/
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