Music Biz Headlines, July 22, 2021

Corb Lund (pictured) fights open pit coal mines, Kim Mitchell enters the CSHF, and The Horseshoe Tavern resumes live music. Others in the headlines include John Orpheus, “Gunner” Smith , Charlotte Day Wilson, Vivendi, UMG, Doug Morris, Lorde, Sony Music Publishing, The Faces, Inhaler, Bob Dylan, Rick Laird, Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga, Coldplay, Surf Curse, and Chuck E. Weiss.

Music Biz Headlines, July 22, 2021

By Kerry Doole

Canadian country music star Corb Lund spurs unlikely coalition against coal

With hits like the Roughest Neck Around that celebrate oil workers, Canadian country rocker Corb Lund might not be an obvious choice as a campaigner against fossil fuel expansion. But the music star has taken on an unexpected new role, as a leader of efforts to stop new open pit coal mines in western Canada’s famed Rocky Mountains. – Chris Arsenault, Reuters

Kim Mitchell says Songwriters Hall of Fame honour caught him by surprise

Kim Mitchell is still wondering what he did to get inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. The 69-year-old beloved singer, songwriter, ace guitarist, co-founder of eccentric rock band Max Webster and ex-Q107 radio personality says when he first heard news of the induction — held live on Global Television’s The Morning Show yesterday — he thought it was a mistake. – Nick Krewen, Toronto Star


Live music makes its return to Toronto’s historic Horseshoe Tavern

Birds of Bellwoods will play the Horseshoe on July 23 – the venue’s first show with an in-person audience since Covid-19 caused the shutdown of live music in Canada in early 2020. Pandemic restrictions mean the audience will be capped at 90 people – just 19 per cent of what’s usually a full house. – Brad Wheeler, The Globe and Mail

John Orpheus: Saga Boy finds his identity

The “stories and memories” that made John Orpheus, his journey of transformation, and his search for home and identity is in your face in his powerful memoir, Saga Boy: My Life of Blackness and Becoming. Saga King, the book’s accompanying album, which also addresses those themes, will be released on July 30. – Errol Nazareth, Words & Music

Weekend Playlist: Charlotte Day Wilson releases superb debut featuring a roster of Toronto talent,

This week’s playlist also features new music from Omah Lay, Dave and Stormzy, Colleen, Shabason, Krgovich & Harris, and Kurt Vile. – Richie Assaly, Toronto Star

Gunner Smith – a tireless promoter of the Hamilton music scene

Every Friday, starting at noon, Jamie “Gunner” Smith holds down the fort at Mohawk College radio station 101.5 FM The Hawk for seven hours straight. His Steel City Music program is a marathon of music, storytelling, interviews, and entertainment listings, most of it promoting the local scene. – Graham Rockingham, Hamilton Spectator



Vivendi's 70% UMG sell-off is getting complicated

At the close of last week, Vivendi’s plan to sell off 70% of Universal Music Group seemed simple enough. The French company planned to – and still plans to – spin out 60% of UMG onto the Amsterdam stock exchange in September (September 21, to be precise). In addition, Vivendi was to sell 10% of UMG in a $4B transaction to Bill Ackman’s US-based SPAC, Pershing Square Tontine Holdings (PSTH). That all changed today, when Ackman announced that his SPAC was cancelling its acquisition. – Tim Ingham, MBW

WMG acquires assets of Doug Morris' 12tone Music

Warner Music Group (WMG) is acquiring the assets of 12Tone Music, the independent label founded in 2018 by veteran music executive, Doug Morris. Under this arrangement, Morris will continue to be actively engaged in the day-to-day activities of 12Tone Music and its artists. The deal is expected to close towards the end of July.  – MBW

American Law Institute decision could make it harder for creators to protect their work

Opponents of copyright “Restatement” project say the influential legal organization has ignored dissenting opinions when it voted to approve a draft last month.” – Chris Eggertsen, Billboard 


Sony Music Publishing to disregard unrecouped balances for heritage songwriters

Last month, in a move that won widespread applause, Sony Music announced that it was to disregard unrecouped balances for a swathe of heritage recording artists on its books. Now, the marquee policy from that initiative, The Legacy Unrecouped Balance Program, is being extended to songwriters, with Sony Music Publishing revealing it will disregard unrecouped balances going forward for qualifying songwriters. – Murray Stassen, MBW

Faces are recording their first new music in four decades

Ronnie Wood says he, Rod Stewart and Kenney Jones have returned to the studio. – Caleb Triscari NME

Inhaler: Bono's son and his band top UK chart with debut album

Elijah Hewson has proved he can follow in his father Bono's footsteps after the debut album by his band Inhaler entered the UK chart at number one. Hewson fronts the Irish band, whose LP It Won't Always Be Like This knocked Olivia Rodrigo's Sour off the top spot. – BBC


The 30 Best Albums of 1971

Fifty years ago was an extraordinary time for music. There were 12 albums from 1971 I consider masterpieces—among the finest releases from a dozen of the greatest music-makers in the modern era. These albums have stood up to the test of a half century of innovation. – Josh Jackson, Paste

Kanye West hosts a release party for his new album

West will shepherd the arrival of his new album Donda with a listening party at the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta on July 22nd. The show is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. ET. – Rolling Stone

Bob Dylan recasts his old selves in ghostly concert film Shadow Kingdom

The visual is both crowd-pleasing and elusive, a bittersweet portrait of the rock legend at 80. – Sam Sodomsky, Pitchfork

Lorde cranks up 'Solar Power' for 'Late Show' rooftop performance

Lorde went up on the roof of the Ed Sullivan Theater on Thursday night (July 15) for a thrilling sky-high performance of her single "Solar Power" on The Late Show. Dressed in a voluminous yellow skirt and matching mini-tank, the singer led her band through the title track from her upcoming third album as the New York City skyline spilled out behind her. – Gil Kaufman, Billboard

The Flaming Lips - The Soft Bulletin Companion

Originally released in 1999 as a promotional CD-R, this collection of alternate mixes and non-album tracks bridges the gap between the band’s experimental hijinks and pop instincts. – Stuart Berman, Pitchfork

Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga to pair up for final shows together in August

Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga will join forces for a pair of shows at Radio City Music Hall in August that are being billed as their final appearances together. The shows will take place August 3 and 5, with tickets available for purchase here. All ticketholders will be required to show proof of vaccination. The first of the two nights is Bennett’s 95th birthday. – Chris WillmanVariety


New Coldplay album coming, Alison Krauss joins bluegrass HOF

A look at what’s happening the world of music as artists announce their touring plans and concert venues plan their reopenings after being shuttered by the pandemic. – AP

Lithofayne Pridgon, a muse to musicians and likely inspiration for Jimi Hendrix’s ‘Foxy Lady,’ dies

Pridgon, Jimi Hendrix’s long-term girlfriend and the likely inspiration for one of his most popular and enduring songs, “Foxy Lady,” spent most of her life in a hallowed orbit of music stars. A muse, confidant and forever a free spirit through the 1950s and ‘60s music scene, Pridgon’s life intersected again and again with the careers of Sam Cooke, James Brown, Jackie Wilson, Etta James and — of course — Hendrix. – Chris Campion, LA Times

Rick Laird, Bassist at the forefront of fusion, dies at 80

He played with jazz greats and helped make music history with the Mahavishnu Orchestra. But he gave it up in his 40s to become a photographer. – New York Times

These indie-rock lifers went from obscurity to scandal to a major-label deal in 10 months

Nick Rattigan and Jacob Rubeck knew something weird was afoot with their band Surf Curse when they saw a TikTok video about “Scooby-Doo’s” alleged polyamory subtext, soundtracked by their 2013 single “Freaks.” The band's career is soaring as a result.  – August Brownstaff, LA Times

Chuck E. Weiss dies: Los Angeles music scene fixture and actor was 76

Chuck E. Weiss, a longtime presence on the Los Angeles music scene and the subject of a Top 5 hit for Rickie Lee Jones, died Tuesday at age 76. Details on his death were not immediately available, but friends said he died after a long illness. – Bruce Haring, Deadline


Luminate Data Market Watch Facts & Figures: Week Ending June 13, 2024

Luminate Data Market Watch Facts & Figures: Week Ending June 13, 2024

Here is this week's Luminate Data Market Watch report which features Canadian music stats for the current week and year-to-date comparisons to last year.

Here is this week's Luminate Data Market Watch report which features Canadian music stats for the current week and YTD with comparisons to last year. This chart is published every Tuesday. The abbreviation "TEA" is a term used to describe the sale of music downloads or singles. A track equivalent album is equal to 10 tracks, or 10 songs.