Music Biz Headlines, Aug. 3, 2018

Trent Reznor (pictured) discusses Nine Inch Nails, Broadway musicals head to the big screen, and worthy new music books. Also in the headlines are music fandom, EDM moneymakers, Drake, Sleep, the Obamas, Billboard hits, SESAC, Harry Fox, Spotify, Troye Sivan, Funk Velvet, Ozzy Osbourne, Soulpepper, and Caribbean Carnival.

Music Biz Headlines, Aug. 3, 2018

By Kerry Doole

How can I light myself on fire to get you to listen? NIN interviewed 

Getting Nine Inch Nails’ signal to cut through the insane noise of the digital marketplace has been 1% inspiration and 99% immolation, says Trent Reznor. But does latest album Bad Witch mark the start of a new phase in their career? – John Doran, The Quietus

From Broadway to the big screen: The musicals getting the movie treatment

Green witches, flying carpets, and singing cats are heading from the stage to the screen, as Hollywood appears to have fallen back in love with movie adaptations of its favourite musicals.  –Tara Bitran, Variety

The Best Music Books of 2018 (so far)

Before the avalanche of big fall books slides over us, let’s take a moment to reflect on the best books of the year so far. Winter and spring are traditionally not big seasons for publishers, but there have been a handful of gems released since January. – Henry Carrigan, No Depression


Lyor Cohen claims Drake reneged a handshake deal to sign with Def Jam

"The truth is Drake shook my hand. It doesn’t matter. He didn’t stop the party. I’m happy for him and I’m happy for his fans. It didn’t hurt my feelings, but you know I’m old school," Lyor admitted. –  Michael Saponara,  Billboard

How technology has transformed, and complicated, music fandom: Interview with Nancy Baym

'Music has always been about building, sustaining, and reworking social relationships and institutions. No matter how commercialized it becomes, it can 'never be just a product.'  So says Nancy Baym in her new book.  –  Cherie Hu, Forbes

Lionsgate and Universal Music Publishing Group sign exclusive multiyear agreement

The companies to collaborate on opportunities for UMPG's songwriters and songs in Lionsgate's film, TV, and digital content.  – PRnewswire

NZ's Big Music Month: Why August is a bumper time for Kiwi concertgoers

After a fairly quiet winter, Kendrick Lamar aside, the New Zealand concert scene bursts back into life this month. Celine Dion is coming too.  –  Stuff

The Biggest Hits of All: The Hot 100's All-Time Top 100 Songs

As part of Billboard's celebration of the 60th anniversary of our Hot 100 chart this week, we're taking a deeper look at some of the biggest artists and singles in the chart's history. Here, we revisit the ranking's 100 biggest hits of all-time. – Billboard


Calvin Harris and the Chainsmokers will make more money this year than you'll pull down in your entire sad life

There's an old saying that goes "Only an idiot attempts to carve out a career in music with a guitar". Actually, there isn't, but there should be, especially in 2018. That's because the real money in modern pop music is found in the world of EDM. –  Mike Usinger, Georgia Straight

Songwriter groups reach compromise with SESAC, Harry Fox over Music Modernization Act

The vicious infighting between SESAC/Harry Fox Agency owner Blackstone on one side and two songwriter organizations on the other has ended with a compromise that sees the PROs now giving unconditional support for the Music Modernization Act. – Ed Christman, Billboard

Five hip-hop songs that embrace rock samples

Are gentle guitar samples shaping the future of rap? We take a look at the two genre's collaborative history and explore how the sounds might blend in the near future.  – Kish Lal, Red Bull Sound Select

NYT expose looks inside the culture of Billboard magazine

The New York Times‘ Ben Sisario has published a scathing report on the business culture of Billboard, both before and after the exit of chief John Amato. The expose comes just as the trade is feeling increased pressure from online outlets and a well financed effort to challenge its dominate music charts. –


Stoner metal trailblazers Sleep were intoxicating at Danforth Music Hall

The band's concert was proof of the hypnotic power of the riff, and more evidence that, dude, you gotta see 'em.  – John Semley, NOW

Barack and Michelle Obama bust out dance moves at Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s concert

Beyoncé and Jay-Z’s On the Run II tour proved a presidential treat over the weekend. Barack and Michelle Obama attended the couple’s show Saturday night at FedExField in Landover, Maryland, and fans couldn’t handle the way they commanded their dance moves.  – Cydney Henderson, USA Today

Why Spotify put music fans in a bubble

Australian-South African singer-songwriter Troye Sivan and his fans gathered for an immersive listening session in LA of his upcoming album inside a bubble capsule. – Kristine Liao, BizBash

Eight years on, Funk Velvet grooves the way they want to

“One reason we wrote this album is because we won't be able to play together as often after this summer" - guitarist Gareth Gilliland. –  Roger Levesque, Edmonton Journal


Lawsuits against Soulpepper co-founder Albert Schultz ‘resolved,’ his lawyer says

A Soulpepper spokesperson confirmed that the legal actions had been resolved, saying the past several months have been a “challenging” period for the Toronto non-profit theatre.  – Adiana Bresge, CP

LoveLoud Festival saddened' by report from Transgender concertgoer about bathroom confrontation

“We are committed to learning from our mistakes and will continuously work to improve the lives of LGBTQ+ people in our community and beyond,” a festival statement reads. –  Stephen Daw, Billboard

Judge allows Ozzy Osbourne’s antitrust lawsuit against AEG to continue

A judge found in favor of Ozzy Osbourne in the singer’s antitrust lawsuit against AEG, finding against the company’s motion to dismiss the case on the grounds that Osbourne had no standing. Osbourne sued the promotional giant over so-called “block booking” of venues. – Ticketnews

Thousands gathered at small N.S. town for annual Stan Rogers Folk Festival

A Stan Rogers song fills me with not only fond memories of my most formative years, but also, sometimes, a profound sense of guilt for having to leave this region of the country to seek greener pastures. –  Mark Sampson, Globe and Mail

5 musical acts to catch at Toronto Caribbean Carnival 2018

From soca to dancehall and much more, here’s who’s soundtracking your weekend at the event formerly known as Caribana. –  Radheyan Simonpillai, NOW

Jayda G
David Reiss

Jayda G


Fresh Sounds Canada: New Songs from Jayda G, Claudia Bouvette and More

This week's discovery roundup of new Canadian songs also includes Indigenous songwriter Celeigh Cardinal and Quebec acts KROY and Mon Doux Saigneur.

In Fresh Sounds Canada, Billboard Canada puts you on to the must-hear songs of the week by artists on the rise and those about to break. Here's what's out this week.

Jayda G, “If We Only Knew”

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