Music Biz Headlines, Oct. 7, 2019

City and Colour's Dallas Green (pictured) finds beauty in sadness, VR concerts are expanding, and the impact of A.I. musicians. Others in the headlines include Vic Vogel, Alexina Louie, T. Thomason, PETA, Spotify, Twitch, MGM, Ginger Baker, Sarah McLachlan, Steve Miller, Aerosmith, Haim, and Doch Chkae.

Music Biz Headlines, Oct. 7, 2019

By FYI Staff

City and Colour's Dallas Green finds beauty in sadness on 'A Pill for Loneliness'

No, Dallas Green isn’t a perpetual sad guy dead set on making melancholic music. As he settles in for a round of press for an album titled A Pill for Loneliness, his sixth under the moniker, Cityand Colour, he’ll be the first to say he digs party music. – Mark Daniell, Calgary Herald

Alexina Louie gets a rare honour for a Canadian composer: glory while she’s alive

Has anyone even heard of such a thing? An entire concert devoted to the piano music of a living Canadian composer? Well, they had one in Calgary last month, when the Honens Piano Festival titled one of its featured events Alexina Louie at 70. – William Littler, The Star


Trump’s banned Nickelback Twitter meme explained

How the ever-polarizing Canadian band got caught in a crossfire of music, politics and copyright law. – Variety

Canadians finally showing love for Nickelback after Trump’s tweet

Defenders came out of the woodwork this week after Trump enlisted one of the band’s biggest hits of the aughts in his ongoing campaign against former vice-president Joe Biden. – Cassandra Szklarski, CP 

Montreal jazzman Vic Vogel was a ‘monumental legend’

On a typical night, photos of 24 jazz stars light up the facade of one of the Montreal International Jazz Festival’s key venues, but recently just one portrait appeared there instead: that of legendary musician and bandleader Victor Stefan Vogel. The visual tribute to Mr. Vogel – everyone called him Vic – followed his death at 84 at his Montreal home, on Sept. 16. – Irwin Block, Globe and Mail

Rock isn’t dead, and here are the stats to prove it

. Yes, hip-hop is on the ascent worldwide, but rock isn’t going gently into that good night. Rock continues to be extraordinarily popular just about everywhere.  – Alan Cross, Global News

NAC preview — Sarah McLachlan: 'I want to suck the marrow out of every day'

The Canadian Music Hall of Famer took a break from her mom duties and music-school responsibilities to come to Ottawa to star in the National Arts Centre’s golden-anniversary gala on Saturday, an annual fundraiser for the NAC’s Youth and Education Trust. – Lynn Saxberg, Ottawa Citizen


To a T. 

T. Thomason’s new album is a map of his future and a blueprint of modern pop.  – Morgan Mullin, The Coast

Prolific Vancouver punk author Chris Walter announces the closing of his Go Fuck Yerself Press

Vancouver author Chris Walter has announced that he's shuttering Go Fuck Yerself Press, the independent publishing house he set up in 1998 to release his own books. Over the past 20 years, GFY has printed essential bios of pioneering punk bands like SNFU and the Dayglo Abortions. –  Mike Usinger, Georgia Straight

PETA getting slaughtered in PR war with Justin Bieber

If I were running PETA, the first rule I’d impose: no more celebrity feuds. There are millions of animals around the world that desperately need our help, and shaming celebrities is a pointless sideshow that detracts from this important work. – Vinay Menon, The Star


Why the music industry is banking on the growth of VR concerts

Virtual reality has brought the pop industry full circle. Just as technology once threatened the music industry's existence, it has now returned with what looks set to become its saving grace: virtual reality. – Simon Chandler, Forbes

The major labels are starting to find life tougher in Sweden. Is this a wake-up call for the future?

Driven by the popularity of local hip-hop, the market share of independently-distributed artists on Spotify’s Top 50 daily chart in Sweden hit an all-time high earlier this month, rising to 44% (i.e. 22 tracks out of 50) on September 5. – Tim Ingham, MBW 


A.I. musicians are a growing trend. What does that mean for the music industry?

The most prolific musical artists manage to release one, maybe two, studio albums in a year. Rappers can sometimes put out three or four mixtapes during that same time. However, A.I. startup Auxuman plans to put out a new full-length album, featuring hot up-and-coming A.I. artists like Yona, Mony, Gemini, Hexe, and Zoya, every single month. – Luke Dormehl,  Digital Trends

MGM agrees to pay Las Vegas shooting victims up to US$800 Million

The settlement would resolve claims that MGM was negligent in allowing the killer to stockpile weapons and ammunition at its Mandalay Bay hotel prior to firing at country music festivalgoers. – Richard Oppel, NY Times


Spotify's market cap value has fallen by $15bn in 14 months.

Is declining ARPU freaking investors as much as record companies? – Murray Stassen, MBW 

Twitch’s latest music channel wants to put gamers to sleep

Twitch has teamed up with Berlin-based generative music startup Endel for a new channel that aims to lull gamers and other Twitch viewers to sleep. Endel’s new “Insomnia” Twitch channel plays 24 hours of music specifically designed to improve the sleep of its listeners. – Janko Roettgers, Variety 

Aerosmith named 2020 MusiCares 'Person of the Year' for five decades of philanthropic work

Aerosmith abides by the adage “Dream On.” The band’s getting the top honor as philanthropic heroes. The award comes nearly 50 years into their rock careers. Fans all over the world say, “it’s about time.” – Candace Ganger, Cheat Sheet

Flashback: Cream play ‘Brave Ulysses’ at final concert

Watch Ginger Baker and the '60s blues-rock trio play the final show of their Madison Square Garden farewell in 2005. –  Andy Greene, Rolling Stone


Steve Miller cracked the code of 1970s radio. But he’s still raging against the music industry.

Record business figures have always occupied a special space in his Rolodex of revenge. They lie, steal your money, and, worst of all, have no idea how to push your records. – Geoff Edgers, Washington Post

"We can go toe to toe with any male rock band and blow them out of the water" - Haim

The LA trio has faced grief, sexism and members of Portishead - now they’re back with a new darker sound. – Sam Wolfson, Guardian

Doch Chkae, the metal band born on a rubbish dump

Formed at a toxic dump in Cambodia, the three members turned to metal as an outlet for their anger. – George Wright, BBC News

Ten new albums to stream

Offerings include new work by Nick Cave and Angel Olsen. – Paste

Grey Sorrenti



Clairo, Daniel Caesar and More to Join Mustafa For London Edition of Artists For Aid Benefit Concert for Gaza and Sudan

The July 4 concert is the second edition following a first event in New Jersey earlier this year, and will feature a host of acclaimed artists like Blood Orange, Earl Sweatshirt, Yasiin Bey and more.

Sudanese-Canadian musician Mustafa has announced a second edition of his Artists for Aid concert, following a sold-out first event in New Jersey this January.

The songwriter and poet is bringing the benefit concert, which will raise funds for War Child UK's work in Gaza and Sudan, to London, England on July 4.

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