Music Biz Headlines, Nov. 18, 2021

D.O.A.’s breakthrough album (pictured) turns 40, Covid tests are costly for Canadian bands, and Alan Doyle hits the road. Others in the headlines include Cluttered, Seven O'Clock Cheer, Drake, Crow’s Theatre, WMG, Universal, David Bowie, Sony Music, TIDAL, Dogleg, the Stones, Taylor Swift, Gene Howard, Dave Grohl, and Adele.

Music Biz Headlines, Nov. 18, 2021

By Kerry Doole

D.O.A.'s game-changing Hardcore 81 has proved an invaluable fast-and-loud blueprint for generations of punks

As damning as this would have sounded back in the day, it was the album that made D.O.A. rock stars. And while Hardcore 81 never went platinum, gold, silver, tin, or even tin-foil at the time, that does nothing to diminish its reputation as a culture-shifting landmark. – Mike Usinger, Georgia Straight

Toronto tribute band says Covid-19 border test hits touring musicians hard

With the Canadian live music industry just getting back up and running, bands that are able to get gigs south of the border are trying to seize those opportunities, but the cost of coming back home due to Canada’s mandatory Covid test is a major impediment. Ron Camilleri, leader of popular tribute band Elton Rohn, says this country’s requirement for a costly molecular PCR  test (costing as much as $200 per person) is a huge expense for his six-piece Toronto band. – Bob Reid, Toronto Star


Cluttered comes home

Matty Grace’s newest punk band already has serious buzz. Now, it finally has a hometown gig. – Morgan Mullin, The Coast

Alan Doyle is back to turning concert halls into giant Newfoundland kitchen parties

Alan Doyle is staggered by the tenacity of the ticket buyers for his “Rough Side Out” tour, which comes to the GTA next weekend some two years after tickets originally went on sale. He reports that the overwhelming majority have hung on to their seats instead of seeking refunds, and says he couldn’t be more grateful. – Bob Reid, Toronto Star

The Seven O'Clock Cheer celebrates health workers with live music

A concert to celebrate the healthcare heroes who have carried B.C. through the pandemic will take place on December 4 at the Imperial Theatre., the Seven O'Clock Cheer will feature musical performances by Colour Tongues, Old Soul Rebel, and Victoria Groff, and a live painting demo by Donna Giraud. – Steve Newton, Georgia Straight

Drake is offering virtual tours of his Toronto mansion to sell you stuff

You can now step inside a virtual representation of Drake's lavish Bridle Path mansion, but be warned; you might get sucked down a costly online shopping rabbit hole and end up with way too much Drizzy gear. Marking the 10th anniversary of his sophomore album Take Care, the just-launched virtual interactive experience is a pretty cool marketing exercise that uses Drake's mansion as a springboard to get your dollars. – BlogTO

Crow’s Theatre’s MixTape is a solo show that will teach you why love is listening

MixTape, a beautifully written one-person play by classical singer and actor Zorana Sadiq, now having its world premiere at Crow’s Theatre, may be an entirely new piece of theatre, but it has the feel of a compilation as its title suggests. – JK Nestruck, Globe and Mail



Warner's recorded music revenues just topped $1bn for the fourth straight quarter

The three months to end of Sept. marked the fourth billion-dollar quarter in a row for Warner Music Group's recorded music business. WMG’s fiscal results for the three months to end of Sept. (its fiscal Q4, but calendar Q3), reveal that the company’s quarterly recorded music revenues – including streaming, digital and physical sales, plus ancillary income – hit $1.172 billion, up 22.3% year-on-year (or up 21.1% at constant currency). Major sellers across the quarter included Iron Maiden, Dua Lipa, Ed Sheeran, Masked Wolf and Ava Max. – Murray Stassen, MBW

Warner Music in talks to purchase David Bowie’s songwriting catalogue

Record label is raising $535m in debt to support music acquisitions. – FT

Universal targets 'name and likeness' acquisitions in new partnership with Authentic Brands Group

So-called 'name and likeness' rights have been simmering away as an interesting business within the music industry for some time. Universal Music Group has confirmed it is launching a strategic initiative with Authentic Brands Group (ABG) to acquire and actively manage artist brands. ABG is a global brand owner whose portfolio already includes iconic celebrity brands such as Marilyn Monroe, Muhammad Ali, and Elvis Presley. – Tim Ingham, MBW


Snap adds Sony Music to its library, creates new AR music Lenses

Snap has struck a licensing deal with Sony Music Entertainment. Through this new deal between the two companies, Snap will be able to include Sony artists' music into Snap's library of licensed music. – Telecompaper

TIDAL to launch user-centric royalties system and direct-to-artist payments

TIDAL, acquired by Jack Dorsey's fintech fim Square earlier this year for over $300M, is planning to launch a user-centric royalties system for a new $19.99 HiFi Plus membership option. Starting in 2022, the music streaming service is planning to adopt what it calls a 'Fan-centered royalties' approach for its new HiFi Plus members, and it says that it has the support from the "vast majority of its record label and distributor partners". – MBW


Dogleg announce hiatus as lead singer Alex Stoitsiadis apologizes for “negative patterns of behavior”

“My selfishness, obsessiveness, and dishonesty are unacceptable and undeserving of a platform in their current state,” Stoitsiadis explained in a statement. – Allison Hussey, Pitchfork

Young Venezuelans attempt to break Guinness record for largest orchestra

Attempting to break the Guinness record for the world's largest orchestra, 12,000 musicians played a classical piece together for more than five minutes. The attempt, by the country's National System of Youth and Children's Orchestras, known as "The System", would beat a Russian record set two years ago and will be judged by Guinness soon. –  Deisy Buitrago, Reuters

The true, boundary-pushing story of Gene Howard and Love Is a Drag

Love Is a Drag, read the title. (In those shadowy years, “drag” was a keyword for gay.) No artist was listed. Instead, the cover warned: FOR ADULT LISTENERS ONLY—SULTRY STYLINGS BY A MOST UNUSUAL VOICE. An album featuring Gene Howard singing love songs to other men was revolutionary in 1960, and belatedly it’s become a gay cultural treasure. – James Gavin, JazzTimes

Taylor Swift’s new version of her classic album Red evokes youthful nostalgia all too well

Like many of my fellow late-’90s babies, Taylor Swift’s music was a big part of my teenage years. She was the Olivia Rodrigo for our generation – minus the Disney stardom and beautifully curated “sad girl” aesthetics. Taylor was more like an imaginary best friend with her fearless guitar strumming, imperfect vocal technique and passionate yet poetic lyrics. – Vicky Qiao, Globe and Mail 

The 10 best Dave Grohl songs, ranked

In honor of the Foo Fighters' recent Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, we've ranked Grohl's best songs, from Nirvana to today. – Paste

Miley Cyrus, Halsey, Machine Gun Kelly to rock L.A. during Super Bowl 2022 weekend

The Dr. Dre/Snoop Dogg/Kendrick Lamar halftime show won’t be the only highly anticipated musical event during Super Bowl week. Ahead of Super Bowl LVI at Inglewood’s SoFi Stadium on Feb. 13, the Super Bowl Music Fest will come to downtown L.A.'s Staples Center on Feb. 10-12 with a series of all-star double bills. – Suzy Esposito, LA Times


Are Adele, Taylor Swift and takeout food containers contributing to a global vinyl shortage?

Reports of Adele ordering 500,000 pressings of her new album ‘30’ has led one British record store to boycott the artist’s album. Skeleton Records in northwestern England claims that the English singer-songwriter is pushing aside local indie artists and smaller record labels by taking up a large portion of the global vinyl production. – Joshua Chong, Toronto Star

What doesn’t break Adele, Britney and Taylor only makes them stronger

These are redemptive days for female artists. In addition to Spears’s freedom, November has seen a flurry of breakup music that includes Adele’s first album in six years (30, released Nov. 19) and Taylor Swift’s emancipative rerecording of her 2012 album Red, – Brad Wheeler, Globe and Mail

The Rolling Stones perform ‘Ain’t Too Proud To Beg’ for the first time since 2007

The Rolling Stones treated Detroit to an old classic, their cover of The Temptations’ ‘Ain’t To Proud To Beg’. The last time the song was played by The Stones was 26 August 2007 in London on the ‘A Bigger Bang’ tour. – Noise11

Vancouver producer and musician Cat Hiltz, one of the participants in the 2024 Women in the Studio National Accelerator .
Courtesy Photo

Vancouver producer and musician Cat Hiltz, one of the participants in the 2024 Women in the Studio National Accelerator.


Music Publishers Canada Names 2024 Women in the Studio National Accelerator Class

The initiative aims to boost the careers of producer-songwriters and address a glaring gender imbalance behind the scenes of the music industry.

There's a gender imbalance behind-the-scenes of Canadian music, and Music Publishers Canada (MPC)'s Women in the Studio National Accelerator aims to address it.

Recently released statistics have confirmed the major gender gap in multiple facets of the Canadian music industry, and this is especially glaring in the field of music production.

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