Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Copyright, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

Australian Method Series and 1986 – Part 3.5: AC/DC – Who Made Who

“Who Made Who” is like a Greatest Hits album released as a soundtrack album in 1986, for the Stephen King film “Maximum Overdrive”. A forgettable movie.

The funny thing is that the next Greatest Hits slab would come out with another movie, this one a lot better and having a larger social and cultural impact.

Yep, the multi- billion franchise known as “Iron Man” sent AC/DC into the stratosphere. Not that they needed it.

Both album packages are excellent entry points for people who didn’t own or know about AC/DC.

If this was your first exposure, there would be a high chance that you would go out and buy/access some of the back catalogue.

And the song “Who Made Who” introduced Angus Young the shredder. His guitar work here is at a Shrapnel level.

Who Made Who

Drums and bass from Simon Phillips and Cliff Williams in a stock 4/4 time. I’m already invested.

Malcolm kicks in with some power chords outlining a blues chord progression as Brian Johnson fires in with his throaty vocal melody.

Angus then fired in with some fast palm muted licks which sounds like open string licks, something he’ll use to even greater success with “Thunderstruck”. But it’s all picked.

Check out the lead break. Angus breaks out some EVH like tapping.

Lyrically, it’s based around the themes from the “Maximum Overdrive” movie, where the machines come alive and begin killing people.

Like the “Terminator” movie, the tools that humans create, rise up to obliterate the humans.

You Shook Me All Night Long

From “Back In Black”.

It was re-released as a single after the massive success of “Who Made Who” which gave this song a second coming, not that it needed one.

D.T

It’s an instrumental jam which became soundtrack music.

It moves between distortion and clean tone so it could be used in multiple scenes.

Sink The Pink

From the “Fly On The Wall” album.

This song doesn’t get the love it should but goddamn it’s a great song.

The Intro reminds me of “Rock N Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution” and it has a Chorus chord progression which could be interchanged with almost every AC/DC chorus, and I like it.

At 2.50, the Intro kicks back in, with drums and bass before Angus kicks in with his bluesy lead.

Ride On

From the “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” album and Bon Scott gets a spot with this slow blues dirge.

Hells Bells

From the “Back In Black” album.

As soon as the bells chime and the dirty arpeggio riff in Am kicks in, everything starts tingling. It doesn’t matter that I’ve heard it a lot of times. It still gets me.

Shake Your Foundations

Also from “Fly On The Wall”.

Another underrated song from an album that is seen as a disappointment.

You can’t tell me that the Intro/Verse riff isn’t classic AC/DC and a Chorus that almost mimics “You Shook Me All Night Long”.

Chase the Ace

Another instrumental jam session but a bit more aggressive than “D.T”.

Check out the drum groove in the Intro. Something that Lars Ulrich would use to great effect in “Enter Sandman”, which is also based on the “Dirty Deeds” Intro/Verse drum pattern.

For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)

From the album with the same title which came after the “Back In Black” monster.

I was hooked from the opening riff and the way Malcolm and Phil Rudd build it.

Once the slow groove kicks in, it feels that heavy that it’ll destroy everything in its path. And it did.

In Australia and the U.S, it’s 5× Platinum.

And it kept AC/DC relevant in a friendly MTV world which was starting to promote artists who looked great over the music they created.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Copyright, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

The Record Vault: Disturbed – Indestructible

By album Number 4, the Disturbed brand was bigger than ever. Johnny K was gone from the Producers chair. The deals that artists have with producers means that the producers increase their cut and royalty points with each subsequent album. It’s simple business. Instead of paying someone else, they decided to do it themselves.

Disturbed for this album and all albums after is David Draiman on lead vocals, Dan Donegan on lead and rhythm guitars, John Moyer on bass and Mike Wengren on drums.

Released in 2008, it quickly went on its way of matching its predecessors.

In Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the U.S, its certified Platinum. In Finland and the U.K, its certified Gold. It charted well in a lot of countries.

“Indestructible”

It was called “Defend” before it was re-titled to “Indestructible”.

While it is a hopeful song to the armed forces, it also serves as a reminder to everyone that Disturbed is still here after all these years.

Killer metal groove riff to start the song off.

Check.

Anthemic Chorus.

Check.

Guitar Lead.

Check.

Actually, the guitar lead breaks on the album shows the Guitar Community that Donegan is a lot more accomplished than previously thought.

“Inside The Fire”

It was nominated for a 2009 Grammy Award in the “Best Hard Rock Performance” category.

It’s a disturbing song, which Draiman has explained as “standing over the body of my girlfriend, who just killed herself, and the Devil is standing over me, whispering in my ear to kill myself.”

The guitar starts off before the drums and bass kick in.

The chorus shares some similarities to “Primal Concrete Sledge” by Pantera however Disturbed sing it in a melodic and anthemic way and of course the guitar solo is “Guitar Hero” worthy.

“Deceiver”

Another song about a bad relationship or that person in your life that lies, deceives and takes from you.

“The Night”

The original title of the album and the first song written for it. The “Night” in this song is a living entity that surrounds you and hides you.

How good is the intro to this?

And another anthemic Chorus.

Check out the guitar lead. Donegan moves to a new level here with some serious sweeps and string skipping.

“Perfect Insanity”

It’s pre “The Sickness” as the band thought it would be pretty cool, especially for the fans, if they brought back maybe a song or two, that were actually written during the same period that “The Sickness” songs were written.

Another killer lead break from Donegan.

“Haunted”

A bass and drum groove start the song with the sound of rain and a tolling bell, before the guitar riff comes in, all staccato like and in sync with the bass drum.

“Enough”

The way Draiman sings the Chorus showcases his vocal abilities.

“The Curse”

It’s Disturbed from the first album. There’s a bit of everything here.

“Torn”

Another great lead from Donegan.

“Criminal”

The bird calls are back as Draiman sings “huh, huh”.

“Divide”

Another old song from pre “The Sickness”, it’s like a punk thrash song in the intro, before it moves into a groove metal riff that reminds me of Judas Priest’s “Better By You, Better Than Me” for the verses.

Draiman is telling you to be an individual, make your mark and stand out. Don’t be a conformist within the pack.

“Façade”

The drums are frantic for the closer.

And in the same way that AC/DC plays its standard blues rawk and roll, Disturbed doesn’t really stray too much from a style which has brought them public acceptance.

Metal elitists will always look down on em, but Disturbed have flown the flag of metal for many years in the face of hip hop, dance and other crap styles.

Indestructible they are.

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A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Music, My Stories, Piracy

The Week In Destroyer Of Harmony History – August 16 to August 22

4 Years Ago (2017)

NEW JERSEY

“New Jersey” from Bon Jovi was doing the rounds.

“Slippery When Wet” was written while Jovi and Sambora still lived at home and had a million dollar debt to the record label. The start of the “New Jersey” song writing process began as soon as the band came off a gigantic 18 month world tour with millions to their name.

A double album was demoed and rejected.

Desmond Child was brought in again and a few more songs got written. Other outside songwriters like Dianne Warren and Holly Knight also contributed. The double album then became a single album and months after the conclusion of the “Slippery” tour, Bon Jovi had a new album ready to release and another 18 month world tour on the cards.

In between the tour, Jon escaped to Vegas and got married.

Once the tour ended, Jon the went on a road trip, released a solo album for a movie and achieved even more success. Richie Sambora was left in limbo, picked up the pieces and also released a solo album.

While “Jersey” didn’t have the same sales success as “Slippery”, it is a solid album and the band earned its keep as one of the best live shows.

THE LABELS

Customers of music showed the recording industry what they wanted via Napster. When other services stepped in, music customers showed the labels what choice brings to the conversation.

Choice for fans to decide and make their own decisions and the power to demonstrate what they believe something should be worth.

But the labels ignored it.

It wasn’t until a hardware company created iTunes and then techies created streaming services that customers started to get what they want, digitally.

So are the the record labels and the publishers doing their best for artists in the long term or are they just focused on the short term profits?

Instead of following a path that leads to better standards/outcomes for artists in the long term they seek a litigious path that only benefits them in the short term.

The labels and artists should understand that there are fans who don’t pay for recorded music because they don’t believe they should, however these same fans have no problem coughing up $200 plus dollars for a concert ticket for a larger act and these same fans have no problems coughing up $20 to $70 for independent acts. It’s their choice how they choose to interact with music.

And then there are the fans who have large LP and CD collections, who don’t pay for music anymore, but still pay for concert tickets and what not.

And then there are fans like me who have large LP and CD collections and decided that streaming is the way forward. So I pay for a family account and I have no problems forking out cash for a concert ticket. And I still add to my physical collection when I feel like it and when I see it as worthwhile for my collection.

And then there are fans who have large LP and CD collections who have decided that purchasing physical is what they want to do.
And these fans also have no problem paying for a concert ticket.

The recording industry has never been more powerful. There’s all this crap about piracy, streaming rates and the techies taking over. But the techies make tools, not stories or music.

Life is a struggle for everyone, not just creators.

THE WAY OF THE WORLD

If you risk, you could lose. There’s no safety net in life. And we don’t hear from those who risked everything and failed and now have nothing. Hell, we don’t even know their names. Only the winners get their story told.

It’s a “winner-take-all” economy and we plod on, trying to make it. But we don’t know where to start, so we take all the roads on offer, only to get back to the start.

Making music is great, but making connections is better. It’s the way of the world today.

MONEY FROM THE OLD

Did you know that Book publishers make more than 90% of their profit from books they published years ago. And yet they put 2% of their effort into promoting and selling those books.

Would it be fair to say that 90% of the income that the record labels get comes from music that came out years ago compared to what is new.

The majority of music consumers don’t normally purchase creative content all the time but when they do, they buy what is popular.

It’s the reason why the “Black” album from Metallica still sells. It’s the reason why “IV” from Led Zeppelin still sells. It’s the reason why “No More Tears” still sells. It’s the reason why “Slippery When Wet” still sells.

However we are living in a different era, one controlled by consumers. And the new stuff released by artists is originally purchased by a smaller hard-core super fan group. Much like the 70’s. Then in time as word spreads, people will check out the release and keep it in the conversation. Much like the 70’s.

Recognition doesn’t come on day one or week one or month one or year one. It percolates year after year after year until it boils to the surface. Will you be around to capitalise and monetise?

HOW THE LABELS ROB CREATORS

YouTube tells the world that the service pays more in the U.S for Ad-Supported Streaming than other services like Spotify and Pandora.
The record labels via their lobby group RIAA disagree with YouTube’s math. 

But the record labels and the publishing/licensing companies are the first to get paid. And nowhere in this debate have these organisations mentioned what they get.

But there are thousands of news articles showing what the artists or the song writers get from YouTube streams in their bank account, but the artists are the last ones to be paid, once the labels and publishing companies take their cuts.

But whose robbing who.

8 Years Ago (2013)

TRIAL OF TEARS

“Trial of Tears” is from the “Falling Into Infinity” album released in 1997.

The album is a controversial subject for Dream Theater fans. Some say it is incredible, others say that it was a sell out and others say it’s crap. Mike Portnoy said he hated it, and that by releasing the Official Bootleg of the album on a Double CD format, he felt that he has corrected that hate and given the album its due justice.

If the other members agree with that statement is an entirely different matter.

“Trial of Tears” is a three movement song. John Myung owns this song. His groovy bass lines are all over it and for any aspiring bass player, this is a song that should be in your bible of bass songs to learn.

This song is not the heaviest Dream Theater song however it is one song that has heaps of melody around it. Words can’t describe the emotions this song stirs, so let your ears do the listening and give it the time of day.

LIFEHOUSE

Lifehouse just seems to hang around in my life. Maybe it is because my wife played the “No Name Face” album to death at home and in the car when it came out in 2000. While the lead-off single “Hanging By A Moment” had the traction, it was cuts like “Cling and Clatter”, “Quasimodo” and “Everything” that hooked me in.

“No Name Face” was the pinnacle. “Stanley Climbfall” and the self titled album didn’t even come close. I was starting to lose interest.

“Who We Are” in 2007 got my attention with the sorrowful “Storm”, the soul searching rock of “Disarray” and the Johnny Cash vibe of “Broken” .

Then in 2010, came “Smoke and Mirrors”. Tracks 1 to 8 are top notch. They should have stopped the album right there. It would have been perfection. “Almeria” has the song “Moveonday”, which reminds me of “When The Levee Breaks” from Led Zeppelin.

The rest however pales compared to “No Name Face” and “Smoke and Mirrors”. Crank em.

ZARA

I wrote a little story about what artists could learn from Rosalia Mera the co-founder of fashion giant Zara.

REALITY

Piracy can never be handled with a one size fits all business model.

Piracy is hard to be stopped however it can be competed against. Piracy is a service issue. Pure and simple.

The internet is just another disruptive service to the entertainment industries; like the time the VCR was going to destroy Hollywood. Instead the VCR opened up a whole new ownership and rental income stream for Hollywood. With all new technologies, the entertainment power brokers try to destroy it at first. When they realize that they are going to fail, it then becomes part of the new market. In 2012, recorded music had its first year of small growth. Since then it’s been growing.

And music-streaming services will reduce piracy.

And that’s another wrap for another week.

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Copyright, Influenced, Music, My Stories

The Week In Destroyer Of Harmony History – July 26 to August 1

4 Years Ago (2017)

I was listening to “Promised Land”, which at that time was the new single from the Sweet & Lynch project.

For those that don’t know, Michael Sweet from Stryper joined forces with George Lynch to create Sweet & Lynch. They are supported by one of the best rhythm sections in the business in James Lomenzo on bass and Brian Tichy on drums. Underpinning or financing it all is melodic rock label Frontiers.

Their first album, “Only To Rise” was released in 2014. It’s a great throwback to the 80s style I remember well, but with modern touches and production.

3 years later, they are about to drop the “Unified” album.

The first thing that hooks me from “Promised Land” is the tempo. It’s basically a speed metal song.

A cross between Dokken’s “Lightning Strikes Again” and “Tooth And Nail” in some sections and Stryper’s “The Way” in other sections.

The lead break is one of Lynch’s finest metal moments in 2017. It’s got melody, hammer ons, pull offs, sweep picking and string skipping. All at 140 plus clicks a minute.

Unfortunately “Promised Land” is just another song lost in the 30 million plus songs on streaming services, along with other Sweet & Lynch gems like “Love Stays”, “Me Without You” and “Recover”.

Copyright abuses were pissing me off so I wrote about it.

Ed Sheeran writes songs which become popular. Then he gets hit with a lawsuit because his songs are making money and the family members of a departed artist, or the business entity that owns the copyright of an artist who is departed or has not creating anything worthwhile anymore wants a cut.

If Copyright terms remained how they were originally, this would not be a problem. First, the creator had a 14 year monopoly, with a chance to renew for another 14 years for a total of 28 years. However, once the creator died, all of their works became public property, free to be used by any other artist/creator to create derivative versions. So if the creator passed away during a term, the works ceased to be under copyright and went straight into the public domain.

The British 60’s Rock invasion happened because of these rules.

So who is copyright benefiting once the person who is meant to have the monopoly (the creator) to create works has passed on?

The corporations and estates who control the copyrights of long-dead artists. That’s who.

Frequency is a bad word for rock and metal artists.

Release music frequently is another bad phrase for artists.

It’s a concept artists are struggling with. It’s even more troublesome for bands. The singer/songwriter can make it happen, but for bands it’s a different story.

Netflix wouldn’t be able to grow their subscriber base if they released one TV show every two years?

It’s a streaming world. The youngsters, the ones who replenish the music base are signed up to streaming. And artists who don’t want to be part of the streaming group are still debating the payouts.

The money will come. But you need to control your copyrights so you get maximum royalties. 

The paradigm is different. Your musical output lives online and the money is in what lasts. Success is based upon cumulative streams, not sales of albums, and the streams go on forever.

8 Years Ago (2013)

I watched Dream Theater in Australia on the “Systematic Chaos” Tour and they played for three hours (with an intermission of about 10 minutes in between). For some reason that was perfect, however when I saw them again on the “Black Clouds and Silver Linings” Tour, they played just over 2 hours and it was too much.

And I was confused as to why I felt that way.

I think hitting the same market too quickly and the flow of the set list was the problem. The 2009 show took place almost 12 months since the 2008 show.

They did “Solitary Shell” with extended solos. It is not the strongest song in the Dream Theater catalogue, so what happens when you take a song that isn’t your best and make it longer?

You get a yawn fest, a toilet break or a beer/smoke break.

And at the time did we really need a live album from Metallica?

They had released four DVD packages of Live Concerts during the Death Magnetic tour, as well as the Six Feet Down Under EP’s plus all the stuff they release on Live Metallica.

The saying goes, you need to have lived to create everlasting art.

When Metallica created the “Black” album, the main members were 27 years of age and the producer was 36. Life experiences were on their side.

The main classic rock bands were all about individuality. The Eagles, Boston, Styx, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin, Kiss, Rush, Bad Company, Foreigner, Aerosmith and Cheap Trick all had a unique sound.

The Eighties gave us Metallica, Motley Crue, Guns N Roses, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, U2, Duran Duran, AC/DC, Journey, Whitesnake, Van Halen (and yes i know that some of these bands formed in the seventies), Aerosmith again and Foreigner.

Metallica played fast speed metal that was labelled thrash, Motley Crue played a hybrid version of pop, punk, rock and metal. Van Halen wrote the book on the nuclear band, Guns N Roses rewrote the seventies classic rock period with a dash of punk and Def Leppard merged Queen, with Bowie with Mott The Hoople with their NWOBM leanings into a pop rock format. Each band spawned thousands of imitators.

Rush could have recorded a mainstream radio friendly album in 1976 just to please the record label. Instead they recorded “2112”, an album that set up a very lucrative future for Rush and an album that made the record label very nervous when they heard it. As guitarist Alex Lifeson has stated in numerous interviews, “2112” set up a career for Rush.

What happened to the uniqueness?

“Kill Em All” Metallica’s first album was celebrating 30 years in July 2013. At the time of its release it didn’t really set the world on fire, however if you look at the reviews and praises the album is getting now, it is like the album came out and created a movement called thrash metal right off the bat. In other words a lot of revisionist history was taking place.

Let’s put into context the lifespan of “Kill Em All”.

It came out on July 25, 1983. By February 1984, seven months after “Kill Em All” was released, Metallica was in the studio, writing and recording the “Ride The Lightning” album.

The victory lap of “Kill Em All” was seven months. That’s it. If the band wanted to have a career, they needed to get back into the studio and record a new album.

Motley Crue, Twisted Sister and Def Leppard had break through albums with “Shout At The Devil”, “You Can’t Stop Rock N Roll” and “Pyromania”. Quiet Riot’s “Metal Health” was the first American heavy metal debut album to ever reach No. 1 in the United States on the Billboard album charts.

But RNR history is written by the winners. Since Metallica is now inducted into the Hall of Fame, everyone that can put fingers to letters on a keyboard is rewriting their back story.

Bands like Quiet Riot will be written out. Artists like Vinnie Vincent and Jake E.Lee will be forgotten. The impact of other bands will be diminished because Metallica won.

History is written by the winners.

And does anyone know what the Metallica movie, “Through The Never” is about.

Dream Theater were promoting their new album with webisodes which didn’t feature any musical snippets from their new album.

And a listening party which didn’t feature any fans but plenty of writers for Billboard, Village Voice and other media.

Has anyone purchased a Dream Theater album because Billboard Magazine rated it highly or poorly or from a Village Voice review?

The answer would be a definite NO.

Dream Theater built their career outside of the mainstream. It was the mainstream that came knocking on the door for Dream Theater and they let them in.

Remember back in 1991, Metallica had arena sized listening parties for their fans before the release of the Black album.

Connect with fans first and they will support you.

And that’s another wrap for another week.

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Copyright, Music, My Stories, Stupidity, Treating Fans Like Shit

Sacred Copyright

I thought I’ll go with a Dio title for this post since I’m on a Dio kick at the moment.

Ahh, Copyright. A right created for creators to have a monopoly on their creations for a limited time, which was hijacked by corporations (Record Labels, Movie Studios and Publishers) and recently Investment funds.

I’m not a fan of “The Jesus and Mary Chain” but like so many artists before them, they are going to court because their label Warner Music doesn’t want to give them back the rights to their debut album, “Psycho Candy” released in 1985, even though the law states that they should.

This got me thinking about John Waite, who also went to court, because UMG wouldn’t give him back his rights.

And he didn’t win, because on the contract he signed, it was his “loan out company” on the paperwork and not him. Loan out companies are set up by the creator to employ themselves. This gives the artists a lot of tax benefits and when organisations make agreements with the artists, it is via their “loan out company”.

Read this post on CopyrightLately.com for an excellent explanation.

So UMG took the position that Waite didn’t grant them the copyrights, his company did and a company is not eligible to terminate a copyright.

Now for the triple smack down.

Are you ready?

The termination clauses in the Copyright Act, only allow natural persons and the heirs to terminate a copyright, so individuals benefit and not corporations. Yet, it is a corporation like Warner Music and UMG who benefit if the copyrights don’t revert back to the creators.

What a mess?

Waite’s tax-planning vehicle has crashed his termination rights and he had no idea that would be the case when he formed his loan out company.

And while creators are fighting to get back their songs, other creators are fighting to get back control of their brand. The estate of Chris Cornell, which is run by Vicky Cornell, has been controlling Soundgarden’s website and social media accounts. The surviving members of Soundgarden have asked previously for access, but they have been denied and they have not been happy about it.

Vicky Cornell sued the remaining members in 2019, accusing them of withholding royalties to force her to hand over recordings that Chris Cornell worked on before his death. And at the start of 2021, she sued them again over money and then offered to buy out the other members so she could control the Soundgarden brand.

But the change of ownership is a step in the right direction.

Meanwhile, Gene Simmons from KISS has become a lobbyist, making his prophetic lyrics in “Cadillac Dreams” come true. Instead of recording new material, he is meeting with members of Congress to get laws passed so streaming services pay them more.

From the lips of Gene Simmons, “most people don’t realize every time you download a song, the songwriter is making minuscule amounts of one penny”. Umm is he talking about downloads or streams. Two totally different things there. And he goes onto a rant that there will be never be another Lennon, etc., but when you live in an ivory tower, you’re so out of touch, you have no idea what is happening and how much money new artists are making.

New Organisations which come from the labels or the publishers are still rooted in the same crappy innovation ideals of those organisations. So when Congress passed a law to create a new arm to match the unpaid royalties to artists, the first thing the new organisation did, called MLC, is nothing.

Their claim portal for artists to log in and search through unmatched songs and claim the ones they own is still not up and running.

Someone should tell Gene, to lobby this corporation to get the Claim Portal up and running.

So potentially, the unpaid royalties will now sit with MLC for at least 5 years and maybe more, before they even get a chance to be distributed.

But in all honesty, this will be a disaster, because there are a lot of conflicts of interest present when it comes to songs. Ex band members will claim songs out of spite, not because they wrote them.

Meanwhile, Gene’s punching bag, YouTube, paid over $4 billion to the labels and publishers over the last year. How much of that found its way back to artists or songwriters remains to be seen?

And the Federal Court of Australia made Clive Palmer pay even more money back to Universal Publishing, for his recreation of “We’re Not Gonna Take It” into the song “Aussies Not Gonna Cop It”, which he then used in all of his campaign videos across the nation. So instead of paying $150K for a 12 month licence to use the proper song, he has ended up paying $1.5 million in damages plus lawyer fees and what not.

What a dickhead?

And on the topic of dickheads, the major record labels (Sony Music, UMG and Warner) along with the music publishing companies are doing their best to own the title.

There hell bent nuclear strategy to go after internet service providers (ISPs) for the actions of a few users, these organisations have found a way to cut people off from the internet based on a mere accusation of copyright infringement.

A recent court decision in the U.S, has given these organisations unprecedented power and the Electronic Frontiers Foundation (EFF) is doing their best to get this bad decision overturned due to the incorrect instructions the judge had given the jury.

Basically these organisations claim for damages when people use the songs they have the rights for and then they get the courts and the law and the politicians to fight their battles.

Meanwhile, in Germany, the labels, publishers and independent copyright holders have teamed up with the ISP’s to block sites without the need of a court approval.

Each Copyright complaint by a label or TV producer is reviewed by a committee made up of retired judges. Streaming services make up 55% of revenue in Germany and piracy has reduced significantly. However people still seek out P2P services hence the reason why they want this kind of power.

But web-freedom activists are not happy as they believe this kind of power restricts internet freedom. The method here is to attack the services that offer illegal content rather than the users.

As the article in Billboard stated: “In Germany, the legislative environment is heavily weighted against censorship and attacks on internet freedom. Having lived under the Nazi Third Reich and communist East Germany, Germany considers privacy a hard-won freedom.

The power granted to corporations for Copyright Infringements is a form of censorship and for the German people, censorship will never happen again.

Meanwhile Twitch is getting hit with thousands of copyright infringement claims on a daily basis. So the entertainment corporations close down or take down or shake down people and services from trading in pirated works, and then when they use music in their live streamed videos, these same bodies issue infringement claims to take it all down.

Maybe a conversation between Twitch and the entertainment corporations would have resulted in a better outcome.

But that’s too difficult.

Talking, that is.

And remember when Steven Spielberg was trying to destroy streaming services and Netflix in general and he didn’t want Netflix movies nominated for Oscars because the movies that Netflix makes are shown on TV screens. Well Netflix won seven Oscars at the recent Academy Awards and that was more than any other studio.

Well good old Steve knows a good deal, and he just signed up to make movies for Netflix. I guess reality is a slap in the face.

Thank you for your cooperation. A copyright complaint is just around the corner.

And I feel like listening to “2112” from Rush right now.

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Copyright, Music, My Stories

The Week In Destroyer Of Harmony History – June 14 to June 20

4 Years Ago (2017)

I reckon Copyright is a Ponzi scheme and they are using the law to protect it.

Copyright terms are ridiculous.

All of the songs from “Hardwired To Self Destruct” will be in the public domain by 2120 (approx. based on the current terms of life of the creator plus an additional 70 years after death).

Led Zeppelin’s “IV” will be in the public domain by 2110 (approx.).

The crazy thing is the 10 year difference of the estimated public domain date between Metallica and Led Zeppelin, however the albums have a 40 years difference between release dates.

Proof of how much Copyright was hijacked by corporations during the 70s. And while the executives take it in, the artists are left with nothing.

Because the music business has a payment problem.

Artists are constantly fighting to get paid properly.

Promoters don’t pay on time or they don’t pay what is promised. The labels get creative with their accounting and underpay the artists. Then trusted people like managers skim too much and people who didn’t create anything of value are flying private while the artists who created something of value are traveling by road or flying second class.

I was listening to some thrash music and wrote about my fandom of Megadeth and the the year 1986.

In Australia, we have a lobbyist for the MPAA called Graham Burke, who is so good at spinning the piracy argument that politicians believe him.

Burke and his organization “Village Roadshow” are meant to lead the movie business into the new age. But they think by denying that the new age exists they will get back to the old age.

And I was pissed at the broadband rollout in my area because I lost internet access for my whole family for three plus months. But according to Burke, we are all filthy pirates.

8 Years Ago (2013)

I was listening to a lot of Motley Crue and Sixx AM so a Nikki Sixx “What Do Ya Mean I Don’t Write Good Lyrics” appreciation post was written.

I’m no puppet
I engrave my veins with style ….from Dancing On Glass

I was on Team Sambora when Jon Bon Jovi said that if Sambora was The Edge he would be harder to replace. It was a cheap shot from Jon. And since 2013 was the year I experimented with some douchebag posts, you can read one here about Jon. I did others as well.

And the anemic sales figures of artists kept getting publicity, but no one cared about sales anymore except the ones who wanted bragging rights.

I compared 1993 and 2013. From long haired stoner boy to short hair corporate guy. A slave to the grind I had become. And here is its sequel.

Music has been my companion my whole life. And I thought about that while I was watching Australia qualify for a World Cup.

At the end of a football game, music is always played. On the trip home, music is played again via the radio or a playlist or a CD mix. It’s always in my life.

I was surprised that people haven’t heard of Kim Dotcom or MegaUpload.

Kim Dotcom has been painted as a money laundering criminal by the FBI on evidence gathered by the MPAA and somehow he was that dangerous that his arrest needed SWAT teams to break down his door and arrest him in the early hours.

All because he ran a cyber locker that people used to share songs and albums through.

We are exposed to news 24/7. If any musician/artist wants to survive the times, they need to be creating news every day. Because what’s trending today is over tomorrow.

Nintendo designer Shigeru Miyamoto said that Nintendo wants “to create a game that people will want to keep and keep playing for a long time.”

Sort of like our favorite artists and their best works.

I like hard rock. I cannot escape it. And I came across a band called Angeline and their “Life: Volume 1”, EP. They are from Sweden and formed in 1987.

Initially the band was influenced by Bon Jovi, Europe, Iron Maiden and Queensryche.

When the music scene changed in the 90s they reverted to being a cover band. It’s not all about the glamour and the fame. There are highs and lows. Artists do what they need to do to survive.

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Copyright, Influenced, Music, My Stories

The Week In Destroyer Of Harmony History – May 24 to May 30

4 Years Ago (2017)

There are a lot of stories of how the recording industry has been transformed since Napster and most of those stories centered around the losses of income to the record labels. They blamed the technology as its never the fault of the record labels.

Then came iTunes and the purchase of mp3’s became legal, putting money into the labels balance sheets. But the labels still complained.

Then YouTube appeared, then streaming came on the scene in Pandora, Grooveshark, Deezer and Spotify and the conversation shifted to the pennies paid per listen. The labels blamed the technology for the low payments because it’s never the labels fault.

In the end if you are signed to a label, creating music which is being listened too and are not getting paid, your issue is with your employer, the record label.

But it’s never the record labels fault.

“We sound like cocaine” said Bjorn Strid, the singer from The Night Flight Orchestra.

If you read this blog, you will know of my appreciation for The Night Flight Orchestra.

It all started in 2012 with the excellent debut. “Internal Affairs” and it continued in 2015, with “Skyline Whispers” and in 2017, we have “Amber Galactic”, which you can read my review here.

Artist Don Brautigam passed away and I wrote about him here and here.

If you’ve seen the Metallica “Master Of Puppets” or the Motley Crue “Dr Feelgood” covers, then you’ve seen his work.

The album cover is a forgotten art form, but man, it’s an important one. Once upon a time, the look of an album cover would be the deciding vote if a person outlaid their money.

It carried the brand of the band.

It was the first thing that spoke to the music buyer. And as time has gone on, the artists who created some of the iconic covers are never mentioned.

8 Years Ago (2013)

I was listening to Vaudeville. They merge the styles from Muse, Deftones and Radiohead with Hard Rock. It sounds beautiful and original.
And if you want an entry point into the band, check out the song “Restless Souls”.

Will you stand up
And fight against their wrath
Or will you run
Until there’s nothing left

Their first album “Dismantle The Sky” came out in 2009. The next album “Vendetta” came out in 2012, and this is the album with “Restless Souls”. In March 2013, they released an EP called “House of The Rising Sun”.

And after I wrote this post they released “Masquerade Part 1” in 2014 and “Masquerade Part 2” in 2015.

Which I didn’t know about. So I have some listening to do.

Daft Punk entered the charts this week in 2013 at Number 1, moving 339,000 copies of their “Random Access Memories”.

And streaming/digital was king as 65% of Daft Punk’s sales came from digital sources. And I was thinking, why couldn’t metal and rock artists get these kind of numbers.

And Victory Records were in the news again about shitting on artists.

It first began in August 2006, when Hawthorne Heights filed a lawsuit against Victory Records, accusing the label of creative accounting practices, unpaid royalties and for damaging the band’s reputation and relationship with their fans.

In 2011, A Day To Remember also filed a suit against Victory Records for unpaid royalties.

And in 2013, Streetlight Manifesto is telling their fans to not purchase the album from any physical and online retailers and to only purchase merchandise from the band’s website because of their dispute with Victory.

After this post, in 2017, another band called “Darkest Hour” said that they never received a penny from their Victory contract.

And to slap the artists in the face even more, it sold for more than $30 million in 2019 and the artists didn’t get a cent from the sale.

TesseracT is one band that really got my attention and you can read my review of their excellent “Altered State” album here.

Dream Theater announced a “Live At Luna Park” DVD/CD release in February 2013 for a May 2013 release. May was almost at its end and no news had been forthcoming.

Well the release finally came out in November/December of that year.

And people were getting arrested and locked away for copyright offenses. Their jail terms for non violent crimes were longer than violent crimes.

And Police Departments were not doing any investigation of their own. They simple took the evidence of the movie studios and record labels as being true and correct.

Draw The Line” from Disciple was doing the rounds.

This is where I draw the line
This is where the old me dies
Light a match, let it burn, kiss it goodbye
Give it up, what I was, this is where I draw the line

I always like to write posts that highlight how certain songs are inspired by other songs. You can read my post called “The Kashmir Effect”.

And I started a new series called “Classic Album Closing Songs”, thinking it will be a monthly post. And I’ve only done one.

Which actually covered a few albums.

Like “Diary Of A Madman” (1981), “Hallowed Be Thy Name” (1982), “Who We Are” (2011), “S.M.F” (1984), “Shogun” (2008), “Aerials” (2001) and “The Count Of Tuscany” (2009)

And “What About Now” disappeared from the charts and the sales.

Bon Jovi (the band) spent over 5 months recording and writing this album, a few more months promoting it, only to have it do a run of 10 weeks before it disappeared.

From Bon Jovi I went to Megadeth and the lyrics of Dave Mustaine.

And my iPod shuffle was on fire with its selection so I wrote about “Chainsaw Charlie (Murders In The New Morgue)”, “California Morning”, “Crazy Train”, “Caught In The Middle”, “Caustic Are The Ties That Bind” and “Cardiff”.

Well that’s another wrap for another week.

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A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Influenced, Music, Unsung Heroes

The Record Vault: Dokken – Back In The Streets

“Back in the Streets” is a bootleg released in 1989 by a German label who had apparently stolen the demos from Don Dokken back in the day.

Well that demo must have been found because these recordings also ended up on “The Lost Tapes”.

While the songs are written by Don and George Lynch, only Don plays on this album along with drummer Gary Holland at far left, and guitarist Greg Leon second from the left, both former members of the band “Suite 19”. At far right is bassist Gary Link.

But the band members mentioned on the back gives the buyer an impression that George Lynch, Mick Brown and Juan Croucier are actually playing on it.

But there not.

In the bottom writings there is a line which states; “Reminder to Don Dokken for not returning Thomas’ vintage 100 W 4 x 12 Marshall Cab”.

Maybe this is why the EP bootleg was released, as a F.U to Don Dokken?

Even though the band, Dokken had broken up at this point, people were still interested in their music and like me, purchased this as soon as it hit the streets.

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Copyright, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Stupidity, Treating Fans Like Shit

The Week In Destroyer Of Harmony History – May 10 to May 16

4 Years Ago (2017)

Barry McKay was at war with Steve Harris over “Hallowed Be Thy Name” and “The Nomad”.

I posted my viewpoint and McKay posted his replies and we had a bit of a back and forth.

I did my 7th post on the the year 1983. It included the bands Slayer, Queensryche, UFO, Motörhead, Heavy Pettin, Saxon and Choirboys.

And I was questioning how many of the social media followers artists have are actually fans or invested in what the artists has to say.

And it’s okay to be influenced. For example, Poison – “Unskinny Bop” (1991).

The song has over 7 million streams on Spotify. The guitar riff is influenced by the intro guitar riff in Billy Squier – “Powerhouse” from 1986.

The bass lines are very similar to the bass line from 45 seconds onwards in Great White – “Mista Bone” from 1989. Then again, that running bass line is pretty common in most songs. You hear it in “Disturb The Priest” from Black Gillian’s album “Born Again”.

And “Unskinny Bop” still sounds original.

8 Years Ago (2013)

I was discussing the prices of tickets for Bon Jovi’s Australian tour.

If a Bon Jovi fan wanted to sit in Row 1 and purchase a Diamond VIP package, the price of one ticket is $1975 + $10 booking fee.

If a Bon Jovi fan wanted to sit in Rows 2 to 5 and purchase an Emerald VIP package, the price of one ticket is $1475 + $10 booking fee.

If a Bon Jovi fan wanted to sit in Rows 6 to 13 and purchase a Sapphire VIP package, the price of one ticket is $975 + $10 booking fee.

And for the Sydney show, these VIP tickets had been sold out. And after the JBJ website sale, the next stage of the sales was the Telstra pre-sales, the Showbiz pre-sales, then the Ticketek VISA pre-sales and the general pre-sales and finally the public release.

What a collusive, exploitive and unregulated process.

And the Telstra presales were a disaster. The website went down and people couldn’t get tickets but eBay had tickets on sale for triple the price.

In other words the band was scalping its own tickets.

And the “What About Now” album continued its free fall, sitting at 133.

And I was always trying to tie together various threads from different artists. This post was called “The Crazy Lifestyles of the Rockers and Metallers”.

All our heroes are flawed and far from normal.

I was spinning the “Operation Mindcrime” album and wrote about the title track, “I Don’t Believe In Love” and “Eyes Of A Stranger”.

Continuing my Queensryche kick, I wrote about “Bridge”.

And “Silent Lucidity”.

And how good is the Vince Neil – Exposed album?

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Copyright, Music, My Stories, Stupidity

Universal Music Gets $1.5 Million for “We’re Not Gonna Take It”

The case between Clive Palmer and Universal Music (UM) is over, with the judge awarding damages of $1.5 million to UM.

For those that don’t know or don’t remember, Clive Palmer is an Australian businessman who decided to start up a political party called United Australia. He asked to use the song, heard that the licence fee was $150K for eight months use and decided to write a parody version of it called “Australia ain’t gonna cop it”.

Well, when Dee Snider and Jay Jay French heard about it, they got the lawyers involved. Dee has said on other occasions, that if someone agreed to pay the licence fee, it was still up to the writer to approve the use of the song and if the person/organization did not represent the message of the song to include all and give people a right to speak up and choose, he would have vetoed the use.

Palmer is not liked by the majority of Australian’s. He’s been found guilty of not paying workers properly, for creative accounting and when he doesn’t get things his way, he sues. Just recently he took the state of Western Australia to court because of their hard border closure. But he met his match with Dee Snider and Twisted Sister.

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