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Music Biz Headlines, April 20, 2023

By Kerry Doole

Why one lawyer is leading a class-action lawsuit against Ticketmaster

“They squeeze the die-hard fans for as much as possible”: Drake fans are suing the company over the astronomical price of tickets. Thousands of concert-goers could cash in. – Courtney Shea, Toronto Life


Feist: Multitudes review – a soul-stirring career highlight


The Canadian singer-songwriter processes birth and bereavement on a raw sixth album of gossamer vocals and screaming outbursts. – The Observer

Feist returns with ‘Multitudes,’ plus new music from Daniel Caesar, Debby Friday, and more

Looking for new music? Here's a curated playlist of the best new music from emerging and established artists. – Richie Assaly, Toronto Star

Stephen Fearing & The Sentimentals are out touring the folk veteran's new album

Called “Vejpoesi” (Danish for “road poetry”), it’s a hybrid album that reflects the duality of Stephen Fearing’s music. Backed by two members of Danish roots band The Sentimentals, Fearing is now touring the record in Canada. – Graham Rockingham, Hamilton Spectator

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Metallica’s Kirk Hammett loves Toronto — but he won’t be playing here anytime soon

Hammett and his metal band mates are limiting their time on the road but not the music itself. New album “72 Seasons” came out Friday. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star

‘B is for Bobcaygeon’: Tragically Hip plan alphabet picture book for kids

“A” is for “Ahead by a Century” and “B” is for “Bobcaygeon.” Those are two of the lessons the Tragically Hip hope to impart to young readers as they prepare a picture book of the alphabet due out later this year. The legendary Canadian rock band is putting their name to “The Tragically Hip ABC,” which is being described by its publisher as “a love letter to the Hip.”  – David Friend, CP

Singer, folk music scholar Mike Tod puts new twist on old-timey songs with self-titled debut

It may seem like Mike Tod is exaggerating when he says he starts thinking about old-timey music from the moment he wakes up in the morning. – Eric Volmers, Calgary Herald 

Alanis Morissette invokes 1990s grunge sound with cover of ‘Yellowjackets’ theme

Morissette is diving into the world of “Yellowjackets” with a cover of the show’s theme song. She released her rendition of “No Return” on streaming services early Friday morning. Morissette’s version will also appear on the latest episode of the buzzy horror-thriller series about a girls’ soccer team stranded in the Canadian wilderness in the mid-1990s. – David Friend, CP

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As Phantom of the Opera’s long run ends, performers reflect and say goodbye

No Broadway show is meant to last forever, though it once seemed that The Phantom of the Opera might be the one exception to that rule. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical about the universal desire for love first dazzled New York audiences in 1988, two years after it opened in the West End, and it quickly became a cultural phenomenon. – Mira Miller, Globe and Mail

Fried eggs, country ham, bullet holes and Neil Young's Somewhere Under the Rainbow

Through personal memories and an interview with Nils Lofgren, Matt Mitchell pens a tribute to Somewhere Under the Rainbow, the latest bootleg gem from Neil Young's Ditch Trilogy era. – Paste

SZA's new tour dates include a Toronto stop and fans are already fed up with Ticketmaster

Tickets don’t officially go on sale to the general public until Friday, but the presale began Thursday, with fans quickly voicing frustrations on social media.  –Manuela Vega, The Star

Every big show coming to Halifax in 2023

An ever-updated list of concerts, comedy shows, live performance, theatre and more. Sonic Concert's April 13 announcement of Dan Mangan's upcoming November show is the latest Halifax concert added to this list. – Morgan Mullin, The Coast

International

Universal Music urges the streaming services to ensure their platforms aren't being scraped by music-making AI tools

It has emerged that Universal Music recently sent a letter to the big streaming services expressing concerns that the makers of generative AI tools might be scraping those platforms’ catalogues. – Chris Cooke, Complete Music Update

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This A1 Drake ripoff has over 250K plays on Spotify. How will the industry respond?

Over the past week, three UMG-affiliated megastars – Drake, The Weeknd, and Rihanna – have seen their vocals replicated by AI tools, and then ‘performed’ within viral music productions. The tune that’s drawn the most attention,  understandably, is a cover version of Ice Spice’s risqué hit Munch (Feelin’ U), on which the vocals are ‘performed’ by an AI copycat of Drake’s voice. Drake himself took to Instagram over the weekend to label it “the final straw”. – Tim Ingham, MBW

BMG integrates New-Release and Catalog divisions: 'Music is music regardless of age'

In an unusual move that seems intended to eliminate age-discrimination in music releases, BMG has integrated its new release and catalog divisions. – Variety

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Spotify vs YouTube Music: Which music streaming service is better?

Spotify and YouTube Music are both popular music streaming platforms but, with such similar monthly costs, which one should you sign up for?  Both streaming services benefit from a huge library, inviting Premium users to listen to a variety of tracks. Learn more here. – TrustedReviews

Name-that-tune game Heardle dropped by Spotify after a year

Heardle, the name-that-tune game inspired by the Wordle craze, is being dropped by Spotify less than a year after the music-streaming giant acquired it. –  AP

Would you pay $33,000 for 4 nights in a Coachella festival VIP yurt for 2? It includes free Wi-Fi!

For the record, the yurts are not the most expensive option for Coachella attendees. – George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune

Changing Trains: David Bowie in the Soviet Union exhibit at The Wende 

How exactly did David Bowie end up on a lengthy train trip through the Soviet Union in 1973? And who gave him a 16mm film camera, even though he definitely was not supposed to be filming, especially in Moscow? And who is the cheeky friend behind the lens capturing Bowie in moments from the introspective to the exuberant, hung-over, and inspired?  – LA Weekly

This week In the Hot Seat with Larry LeBlanc: Robert Deaton, TV, film, and recording producer

Robert Deaton is a much-loved and respected individual who leads an extraordinary life. Deaton has notably served as the executive producer of the CMA Awards on ABC-TV since 2007. In 2021, the Country Music Association extended its long-standing partnership with Deaton. He is also producer of “Stoned Cold Country.”  Learn more in this in-depth profile. –  Larry LeBlanc, Celebrity Access

What happened at Frank Ocean’s Coachella performance on Sunday?

The artist’s first show in six years included reworked renditions of his biggest hits. Unfortunately, the set was cut short. Here’s why. – Richie Assaly, Toronto Star

Soundgarden, Chris Cornell’s widow settle recordings lawsuit

The widow of singer Chris Cornell and his former bandmates in Soundgarden said Monday that they have resolved her lawsuit against them, clearing the way for the release of the band’s final recordings more than five years after his death. – Andrew Dalton, AP

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Royal Trux’s Neil Hagerty arrested after allegedly attacking Police officer in Denver

Hagerty is being held in custody for investigation of second degree assault on a peace officer and disarming a peace officer. – Pitchfork

Blackpink dazzle onstage during historic headlining Coachella set

Jisoo, Jennie, Lisa and Rosé showed off impeccable choreography and a catalogue of massive hits.–  Tomas Mier,  Rolling Stone

Lionel Richie, Katy Perry and Take That to perform at King Charles’ coronation concert

They will star in an eclectic lineup at a concert to celebrate King Charles’ coronation next month, billed by organizers as a chance to celebrate a new chapter in Britain’s history. The formal coronation ceremony for Charles, who became king on the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth last September, will take place at Westminster Abbey on May 6.– Reuters

‘We paved the way for the Rolling Stones’: Ottilie Patterson, the forgotten first lady of British blues

She was a standout singer – but crumbled after a brutal marriage and backstreet abortion. Ahead of a new reissue, her peers recall what happened to this singular talent. – Garth Cartwright, The Guardian

Halsey reportedly leaves Capitol Records in “bittersweet” split

Halsey has reportedly left Capitol Records in a “bittersweet” split. Spokespersons for both the artist and the label are reported to have confirmed the end of Halsey’s time at Capitol on April 15, according to a Variety story. –  NME

Ian Hunter enlists all-star cast for new album, ‘Defiance’

‘I’ll quit when I’m ready!’ says the veteran Anglo rocker. – Cindy Stagoff, NJ Arts

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Billie Eilish and FINNEAS at the portrait booth at the 81st Golden Globe Awards held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 7, 2024 in Beverly Hills, Calif.
Dan Doperalski/Golden Globes 2024/Golden Globes 2024 via Getty Images

Billie Eilish and FINNEAS at the portrait booth at the 81st Golden Globe Awards held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 7, 2024 in Beverly Hills, Calif.

Awards

Robbie Robertson Wins Posthumous Icon Award at 2024 Guild of Music Supervisors Awards

Robbie Robertson was posthumously honored with the Icon Award. Allan Mason won the Legacy Award.

The Barbie ballad “What Was I Made For?” by Billie Eilish and Finneas won best song written and/or recorded for a film at the 2024 Guild of Music Supervisors Awards, which were held at the Wiltern Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday (March 3). The awards, now in their 14th year, celebrate the craft of music supervision in film, television, documentaries, advertising, trailers and video games.

“What Was I Made For?” is the front-runner to win the Oscar for best original song on March 10. If it does, it will be the third GMS winner to go on to win the Oscar, following “City of Stars” from La La Land and “Shallow” from A Star Is Born.

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