A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Derivative Works, Music, My Stories, Piracy, Stupidity, Treating Fans Like Shit

The Week In Destroyer Of Harmony History – November 7 to November 13

4 Years Ago (2017)

DIARY OF A MADMAN

Back in the 80’s, when songs from the 60’s and early 70’s used to come on the radio, I used to say, “really, play something more current.”

They sounded old.

Fast forward to today and all I play is old tunes. Actually 70 percent of the music I listen to is pre 1995.

More specifically; 1980 to 1992.

It’s hard to believe that “Diary Of A Madman” is 40 years old. 

Like the “Blizzard” album before it, “Diary” is a listening experience from start to end.

And because of my addiction to the “Tribute” album, I was blown away by the depth of material on “Diary” that didn’t appear on the live album, like “Over The Mountain”, “SATO”, “You Can’t Kill Rock N Roll”, “Tonight” and the unbelievable title track.

To top it off, it clocks in at 43 minutes which meant back in the 80’s I could dub it one side of a 45 cassette tape and the other side I could devote to the “Blizzard” album.

Check it out.

RELEASE DAY FRIDAY

Back in 2017, during this week I was listening g to;

Sweet And Lynch – Unified

Babylon A.D – Revelation Highway

Shakra – Snakes & Ladders

These three artists had my attention back then. Tomorrow it would have been someone else. They might come back at another time and get my attention. Maybe they won’t.

But if they are not releasing new product on a regular basis, they become forgotten.

So heading towards the end of 2021;

Sweet And Lynch are reading a new album.

Babylon A.D haven’t released any new music since 2017.

Shakra released “Mad World” in 2020 which I missed and they dropped a new single this year which I also missed.

8 Years Ago (2013)

WHO IS THE STAR (The Band Name Or The Personnel In The Band)?

When Metallica started on the scene, I dont recall anyone walking around saying that they got into Metallica because James Hetfield was such a cool cat or Lars Ulrich was the man.

People get into a band for multiple different reasons.

Like being a fan of genre and looking for similar artists of that genre or the songs connected or the album cover connected or the artist was getting a lot of word of mouth and people wanted to be part of the conversation and so on.

Of course some outliers do exist and some people become a cultural influence that transcends their music. In other words, they become institutions themselves like Ozzy.

Slash also comes to mind but it took him almost 14 years from when he left Gunners to re-establish and re-brand himself as a force to be reckoned with.

But he’s back with Gunners.

Because the band name is the star and it always will be.

That is why Axl Rose went all legal to claim the name.

That is why Tommy Lee returned to Motley Crue.

That is why James Hetfield returned to Metallica after rehab. That is why Lars Ulrich never contemplated anything else except Metallica during this period.

That is why Dave Mustaine resurrected Megadeth after he disbanded the band towards the end of the 90s.

That is why David Coverdale resurrected Whitesnake after he disbanded it.

That is why Dimebag didn’t want Pantera to end. He knew that Pantera was the star.

That is why David Lee Roth worked with Van Halen again. That is why Sammy Hagar wanted to work with Van Halen again.

That is why Alex Skolnick returned to Testament.

That is why there was a fight over who owns the right to the Queensryche name.

That is why Dave Gilmour and Roger Waters went all legal for the Pink Floyd name and the rights to “The Wall”.

That is why Benjamin Burnley went all legal for the right to use the Breaking Benjamin name.

That is why Bruce Dickinson and Adrian Smith returned to Iron Maiden.

That is why Rob Halford returned to Judas Priest.

That is why Black Sabbath reformed with three of the original members and released ’13’.

That is why bands like Ratt, Quiet Riot, Dokken, Poison and Skid Row are still continuing with very different line ups and in some cases no original members.

To finish off with the immortal words of Ronnie James Dio “And on and on and on and on it goes….”

COPYRIGHT

For all artists that sign record deals remember this. The label owns your copyright.

And guess what the labels are pushing for.

Even longer copyright terms. Because their is value in copyrights for the corporate entity holding it.

GREED

Greed from the major record labels could end up killing streaming services.

Back in 2013, musicians from Sweden were threatening to sue major labels Universal Music and Warner Music over streaming royalties.

These artists had identified that the problem lies with the major record labels rather than the streaming service and they took action to get royalty rates that better reflect the costs involved in digital production and distribution.

Even the UK Government did a review of streaming paymnets in 2020 and found that the labels are at fault.

Spotify is just one streaming service and they pay 70% of its revenues to music rights holders. Apple is similar and Tidal as well.

And Spotify, as at 2020 has paid $23 billion to the rights holders. When you add the numbers from the other streaming services, it’s a prettty massive profit the labels are making.

Once upon a time, the artists had the power.

Then in the Eighties, the labels stole it back. With the rise in revenue due to the CD, it made the labels mega rich powerhouses.

Well it’s time for the artists to take back the power. Basically the labels without any artists are worth nothing.

But there’s a new player in town. Hedge Funds and Investment firms. And they have cash and artists are cashing in.

TIME

It’s 1992.

The labels are signing Seattle bands, left, right and centre while at the same time they are dropping hard rock and heavy metal bands left, right and centre. This is the power the label had. Not only could they make an artist famous, they could also destroy an artist.

Because the labels controlled all the points of distribution.

But in 2013, things had changed dramatically.

But the power is still with the major record labels. They gathered enough of it during the Eighties and Nineties to be a force to be reckoned. Then in the Two Thousands the massive mergers and takeovers happened, further enhancing the power of the labels. Then in order to allow digital start-ups, the labels did one of three things; charge high licensing fees or litigate the start-up to bankruptcy or negotiate a large ownership stake in the start-up.

So even though the internet has lowered the barriers of entry, without the money and power of the label behind the artists, there is a pretty good chance, the artist would probably go unnoticed.

One thing is certain in 2013.

We move on fast.

Look at the Top 10 lists of pirated movies that TorrentFreak publish each week. It’s always changing and very rare for the same movie to be at number one spot for two weeks in a row.

Look at the Top 10 of the streaming Charts published by each country. The artists in the list are always changing.

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

AFM Records And International Orders

It’s great how the label gets the money when I click buy on the item, as they put up money for the album to be made, but as a fan I still don’t have the physical album.

Let me explain.

Evergrey is one of my favorite acts. They will always be a favorite, regardless of the crap service of their label.

When I saw they had a few different release packages set up for the new album “Escape Of The Phoenix”, I was interested to get one.

The album release date was set as 26 February, 2021.

So on 23 December, 2020, I clicked buy on the EVERGREY – Escape Of The Phoenix – Ltd. Artbook (incl.CD + 7″-Picture-Vinyl). The only place that had it was the AFM store and all the items come from Germany.

The price for the item was €43.86 EUR.

As i was going through with the purchase, I get hit with a €23.99 EUR shipping and handling fee. And I’m thinking, it’s half of the cost of the item. And with most items during the pandemic coming via sea you would think that the shipping would be less.

Anyway the total price came to €67.85 EUR and the Exchange rate at the time was 1 AUD = 0.588771 EUR.

So the final price of the album for me came to $115.24 AUD. I thought fuck it, I’m a fan and it’s coming up to Christmas. Plus I was a few bottles of wine in.

So I clicked buy.

On 19 February, 2021, I got an email that the item had shipped.

You would think AFM would post it a bit earlier for international orders but hey labels have never been customer centric or very smart in that regard, treating their customers as potential pirates, but their whole business model is based on customers.

Hell, I became an Evergrey fan because of piracy.

Since 20 February, 2021, the tracking number tells me that the item is still in Frankfurt, Germany.

Seriously.

On 26 February, 2021, the album hits streaming services and I crank it.

On April 1, 2021, I sent AFM an email and told em, nice April Fools joke as I don’t think I’m ever going to receive this item as it’s still in Germany.

I’m waiting a response.

Now for the album, it’s excellent. And I’ve already reviewed it.

Thank god for streaming and pirates and everyone else who allows access to the music. It allows the fans to crank it.

But the labels don’t realize that the people who buy physical editions are collectors and we can’t wait until we get the item in our hands.

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A to Z of Making It, Music, My Stories, Stupidity

Are Bands Disappearing?

Did Adam Levine just say crap without thinking or did he have a point?

The Twitteratti went into meltdown to prove that bands exist.

A look at some of the bands, shows that they do exist in their niche. Which is a good place to be, as that niche audience will sustain you for a long time, while the popular music consumers move on to the next hit and the next hit and the next hit.

Even the Guardian went into bat for him with this article, about young people not being excited by bands.

Meanwhile, Levine clarified that he meant to say that bands don’t exist on the popular charts.

There’s no doubt that popular music has moved towards the solo artist. It’s easier to make a deal with one person than many others. Then again, in most bands, there is always one person who writes the majority of material and who really gets the record deal.

It’s easier for the labels to deal with a solo artist than a band, as band members seem to come and go these days. And this pisses the labels off. Especially when a member leaving could be the person they want to stay. Having a shared vision amongst members is much harder these days then the days of old. Then again even it was hard. Musical differences anyone.

It’s easier for a solo artist to start creating, as our culture is shaped by technology and a recording studio is available at their fingertips, in their own bedroom.

Meanwhile, starting a band, means putting in some time to jam, playing shows and each member owning at least $5K worth of equipment. It’s expensive and time consuming to be in a band. Apart from owning equipment, you need to pay for rehearsal spaces, travelling expenses and studio time to record. And the venues available to you are spread far and wide, whereas once upon a time the venues were clustered around each other.

Social media also makes it hard for bands because it lends itself to “the one”. The band is never the influencer. It’s the person in the band, provided they control their account and not a PR person.

I guess I’m an old school rocker who still gets excited by bands.

In the last ten years a lot of bands have impressed me enough to buy.

From memory, and this isn’t a definitive list, they are The Night Flight Orchestra, Volbeat, Corroded, Rise Against, I Am Giant, Revolution Saints, Art Of Anarchy, King King, Audrey Horne, TesseracT, Tremonti, Parkway Drive, King Company, Halestorm, Kingcrow, Dynazty, Days Of Jupiter, Royal Bliss, Reach, Rival Sons, Gathering Of Kings, Art Of Dying, Free Spirits Rising, Blacktop Mojo, Bad Wolves, Work Of Art, Cyhra, Leprous, H.E.A.T, Long Distance Calling, Night Demon, Tokyo Motor Fist, Michael Grant And The Assassins, Haken, In Flames, Storm Force, Adelitas Way, Seether and Jorn.

And then I have the usual suspects like Trivium, Evergrey, Vanishing Point, Bush, Black Label Society, Shinedown, Alter Bridge, Thirty Seconds To Mars, Godsmack, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Dee Snider, Michael Sweet (projects), George Lynch (projects), Mike Portnoy (projects), Whitesnake, Coheed and Cambria, Slash, Megadeth, Soilwork, Papa Roach, Tesla, Machine Head, Jimmy Barnes, Killswitch Engage, Tool, A Perfect Circle, Harem Scarem, Red, In This Moment, Protest The Hero, 10 Years, Vandenberg and Stryper.

They don’t break the Top 20 streaming charts but that doesn’t mean they don’t have a career.

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Copyright, Music, My Stories, Stupidity

Copyright This And Copyright That

Ahh yes, Copyright abuse is rife these days. The RIAA, the record labels standover organization, just keeps sending takedown notices to Google on legitimate content.

To show how silly the RIAA really is, their notices are targeting Spotify and Apple. There is a chance that your music might be taken down by a bogus takedown from an organization that keeps telling people they are the good guys and have the artists best interest at heart.

Um yeah. Sure.

Because if the labels did care for the artists they wouldn’t be fighting them when the artists try and reclaim their Copyrights, which the law allows them to, after 35 years.

Here you have a Soul icon asking her fans to not stream or buy her music while she fights for her rights and for her songs Masters to be returned to her.

But the labels won’t return anything without a fight as they want to be the ones doing deals with Investment Managers. And these kind of companies are popping up everywhere. Barometer Capital Management Inc. is launching a new investment fund called the “Barometer Global Music Royalty Fund LP.”

And the main investments will be the Copyrights to songs with a strong track record of earnings. Expect to read about more and more artists making big deals.

Remember back in the day when the biggest Copyright killer was the cassette. It allowed people to copy their vinyl records onto the format. The labels took out huge campaigns to tell the world that home taping is killing the recording business. Instead it made more money for it because it led to more innovations which led to music being more portable.

The creator of the cassette, Lou Ottens, passed away recently at the age of 94 and I would like to thank him for allowing me to create mix tapes, record jam sessions and most importantly to tape my vinyl collection onto it so I could listen anywhere. And become a pirate in the process.

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Copyright, My Stories, Stupidity

Takedowns – Copyright Style

It’s all happening in Australia.

Our government wants companies like Google and Facebook to pay news creators for having their articles appear in search results or when they are shared on a social media feed.

Google is negotiating with them while Facebook said “fuck you” and blocked or restricted all news content on the platform.

The thing is, these news outlets have never adapted to the changing marketplace that the World Wide Web brings.

They put content behind paywalls and it’s not working as good as the news content providers hoped it would do. Physical sales are down.

They have articles on the site with a lot of ads running on the side. Most of the article’s that generate money from ads are click bait stories and not the proper well researched long form articles.

So if you’re a serious journalist, there is a very high chance that your well written story that takes 15 minutes to read will be ignored because click bait short stories end up rising to the top.

And it’s all in the name of copyright.

Copyright allows the news creators to say to Google or Facebook that these companies are using copyrighted material without permission or proper compensation on their services.

And if you are in doubt as to how much power copyright has, look no further than the Beverley Hills Police Officers.

The officers are playing copyrighted music at each arrest and stop, so if they are filmed and that video is shared, they are using copyrights take down tool to remove the videos on copyright grounds.

Remember that the intention of copyright is to give the creator a short term monopoly on their art so they could make money from it.

And then once that term expired, the art enters the public domain so future generations can use it to create.

Add enforcement to it.

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A to Z of Making It, Music, My Stories, Stupidity

Crooks Continued

The “playing live” income stream is non-existent at the moment. But it’s not just artists who are losing out.

Venues also make money by having live music and collection agencies also make money by charging venues a license fee which allows the venues to have live music.

But the collection agencies feel they should be making more money in a pandemic from live performances.

PRS is an organisation in the UK which collects and distributes artists’ royalties. And they thought it was a great idea (a lot of sarcasm here) to introduce a new fee for livestreams because “hey how could they miss out and not get a slice of the pie”.

As the Vice article states;

Livestreams with a revenue below £250 will need to pay a flat rate of £22.50 for this licence, which doubles to £45 for revenues between £251 and £500. This means that for those hosting an online event with a revenue of £250 or less, a minimum of 9 percent will go to PRS.

So do you reckon the independent artists are happy about this cash grab from PRS.

And what makes it worse, artists need to wait at best, six months before they receive any royalties less admin fee from these collection agencies.

And the new tax is basically a punishment to the grassroots artists who would have a small turnover.

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Music, Stupidity

Stupid

On one of the email’s I subscribe to “Stream N Destroy”, it mentioned that Morgan Wallen was the most streamed artist last week (Feb 5 2021 – Feb 11 2021), with 92.3M steams. To compare, Queen was mentioned as the most streamed artist from rock bands and they had 12.1M streams in total.

So I went to Spotify to check him out and it’s country. It’s a double album and a quite a few songs sounded cool, so I added them to my 2021 playlist. I checked out some reviews and it was all negative.

This morning I was over at Vice, which is becoming my go to site for news on a lot of different subjects and there is Morgan Wallen again.

But the article isn’t signing his praises. Instead a drunk and staggering Wallen was caught on video calling a drunk friend, the n-word.

Wallen went into damage control and apologised.

But it was too late.

His label suspended him, his songs were removed from some platforms like iHeart Radio and if any of his songs appeared on official playlists on Spotify or Apple Music, well, they got removed from those playlists as well. And in the space of a few days, he was also removed from being the most streamed artist.

Which goes to show how quickly you can fall, regardless of how long it took to rise to the top of the pile. He appeared on “The Voice” but he didn’t win. A lot of people in the industry didn’t believe he would make it. He did make it and is doing his best to prove the critics right.

And I don’t get it.

He’s obviously mates with a black person, he’s gone out drinking with him and they both got pretty smashed. I guess it’s all a charade.

Wallen might play country music, but his lifestyle is decadent. He’s been arrested for public intoxication before and got into trouble for breaking COVID-19 protocols and making out with coeds. But the Country music promotion machine was behind him, and they used his boozing, hard parting ways to push him as the next big star.

As the Vice article states, there are a lot of other country artists who are of different colour and deserve the same promotional push that Wallen got, but they seem to be bypassed in favour of a white skinned artist.

Maybe the lyrics to “Outlaw” from his new album act as a foretelling.

“I never thought I’d get caught
Yeah, at least that’s what I thought”

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