Thursday, 31 May 2012

Last Jubilee in last minute cancellation

The Last Jubilee festival, due to be held at Bath Racecourse this weekend and featuring a host of punk bands including The Damned, Buzzcocks, Eddie & The Hot Rods, 999, Menace, The Rezillos, UK subs, The Ignerents, Chelsea, Ruts DC, Glen Matlock and The Vibrators. On the official website ( organisers blame the local council and the venue "Dark Establishment Figures put brakes on alternative Jubilee Event" saying "The spirit of 1977 has shown it’s ugly side with Bath Council putting a cancellation notice on the Last Jubilee event being held at Bath racecourse 2,3,4 June 2012. Using spurious health & safety legislation and by delaying their decision until today (31-5-2012) has meant that their ridiculous claims and pathetic demands could The miniscule issues that the venue and the local council had could easily have been dealt with if their notice of cancellation had been delivered in time. They chose to wait until today to do this, giving the organisers no time to put right the minor issues that were raised.". However Bath Racecourse posted their own press release online ( ) saying "The racecourse had agreed to provide the venue for the event, entitled The Last Jubilee. The Last Jubilee was an external event, organised and managed by a company in no way affiliated to the racecourse. Unfortunately, the organisers have failed to fulfil their contractual obligations and the racecourse has taken the difficult decision to withdraw the use of the venue due to breach of contract and health and safety concerns".   

Interestingly one of the bands on the bill, SickNote have said on their website that they were contacted a week before the event by the organisers (via Facebook) who said that "we have had to take the decision to reduce your fee by 50%" although two weekend passes for the event were offered to the band. More on the background to the event and its run up - in this interesting and seemingly well researched blog

Bath and Somerset North East Somerset Council has issued a separate statement saying  (according to reports) " it has not been involved with the cancellation of the event and that it has not expressed any concerns about its nature" and a spokesman added: "The council has spent a significant amount of time with the police and other local stakeholders to help facilitate the event and give it every chance of success."  There also seems to have been noise issues resulting from a dance music event also held at Bath Racecourse two weeks ago. Four children's charities were meant to have benefited from the event. It is not clear of the event will be rescheduled with organisers Jamonit Events Ltd saying "The promoters and organisers of The Last Jubilee have asked for patience and understanding from the ticket holders and performers as they try and rearrange this event as soon as possible".

The Crystal Palace Garden Party due to take place in South London from 23-24 Jun, has also been cancelled. Due to feature Rick Wakeman, Hawkwind and Focus, organisers were planning on using The Crystal Palace Bowl  in Crystal Palace Park, but discovered that the stage there is in much worse condition that originally believed.

Digital pushes past physical in the UK

Digital revenue from sound recordings have surpassed physical product revenue for the first time in the UK  in the last quarter, with download, streaming and other digital services accounting for 55.5% of recorded music income. A continued decline in CD coupled with the continued growth of digital, including an almost doubling in subscription revenues from streaming platforms, led to the change. Overall digital made £86.5 million for the British record industry in the first quarter of 2012, with physical sales taking overall recorded music revenues to £155.8 million. In good news for the record industry, overall sales were slightly up on the same period last year - by 2.7% - with the BPI's Geoff Taylor saying  "the industry's prospects for growth look brighter than for several years" although adding "We will need to see this trend repeated for several quarters to say we have turned the corner - demand for physical CDs remains strong in the UK, especially in Q4. However, the creativity, investment and digital expertise of the British music industry point the way forward for growth in the UK economy". The top five dgital albums came from Lana Del Ray (Born to Die), Emeli Sande Our Version of Events), Ed Sheerhan (+), Adele (21) and Coldplay (Mylo Xyloto) and top selling digital singles were Goyte ft Kimbra (Somebody That I Used to Know), David Guetta ft Sia (Titanium), Jessie J (Domino), Flo Rida ft Sia (Wild Ones) and Emeli Sande (Next  to Me). 

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Iggy ditches record label

Iggy Pop has used a press conference to castigate record companies and announce that his new album would be self-released. Après will be an exclusively digital product from the ‘Godfather of Punk’.  Iggy told reporters “What has a record company ever done for me but humiliate and torment and drag me down?” explaining that whilst still tied to a deal with Virgin EMI, which obligated him to offer them releases first,  the label declined to release it, as the musician had expected.  Après captures Pop’s interpretation of classics by the likes of Edith Piaf, Serge Gainsbourg, the Beatles and Harry Nilsson. However, Iggy also explained that whilst The Stooges, now on tour with many original members, would probably still record for a major label,  he does not foresee doing the same for his work as a solo artist.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Sweden wins EuroVision 2012

Sweden's Loreen was the runaway winner of EuroVision 2012 with 372 points with her track Euphoria, already a number one in four European countries and a hit in ten others. Buranovskiye Babushki - the six strong group of pensioners nicknamed The Russian Grannies - came second with Party for Everyone. With the now legendary block voting in full swing, The UK's Englebert Humperdinck came second last with a rather good song called Love Will Set You Free  (well I thought, so) but it scored a total of just 12, with only Belgium, Estonia, Latvia and Ireland voting for the UK and ended up just one position above Norway, famous for gaining 'nul points' in the annual competition. Jedward, Ireland's entry with Waterline managed 19th place. 

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Two more UK festivals cancel

Following in from the admission from Vince Power's Music Festivals plc that ticket sales in the UK festivals sector this year were "currently slower than last year", as was Bencassim in Spain, two more music events have pulled the plug this week, with the Cheshire-based Cloud 9 and Golden Down in Winchester, joining the already cancelled Sonisphere, Rough Beats and the Big Chill, Cloud 9 ticket holders will all get refunds, while those with tickets for Golden Down can opt to take a refund or swap their ticket for access to this year's Glade Festival.

There is aso a very good article in the Observer newspaper on May 27th - "Beat surrender: why the heart of British rock music is under threat" looking at small venue closures - its all here at:

Friday, 25 May 2012

Ticketmaster to service Barclays' needs

The soon-to-open Barclays Center, bringing sports and live entertainment to Brooklyn, NY, announced this week that Ticketmaster will handle both primary and secondary ticketing for the venue. Ticketmaster will manage primary ticket sales, and ticket resale will be handled at the company's secondary ticketing site, TicketsNow.

String Cheese revolt

Colorado jam band String Cheese Incident have taken a stand against Ticketmaster and what they consider unwarranted costs and fees – allowing fans to purchase tickets to their shows from their official website at face value without the added service charges – but its been a battle – more here

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Power warns of festival ticket sales slowdown

Vince Power's Music Festivals group yesterday warned that economic woes are hitting sales at its Hop Farm Music Festival in Kent and its Benicassim event in Spain. Mr Power said tickets for Hop Farm, which takes place at the end of June and features Bob Dylan, left, as the headline act, "are currently slower than last year". Benicassim, which is held in mid-July, is also suffering from flagging ticket sales, despite announcing some big-name acts including Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds and New Order. "The festivals market in general has been affected by the continued depressed economic climate and the availability of strong revenue-generating acts," said the AIM-listed company, which is now looking to cut costs. Shares in Music Festivals tumbled 3.5p to a record low of 42.5p. They have crashed more than 30 per cent since their 65p debut last June. 

Just how does Kickstarter work?

A really interesting blog by former Dresden Doll Amanda Palmer who has raised nearly $1 million from fans on Kickstarter for an album and a tour - and reveals where the money will go - and who gets paid what!

Supreme Court rejects Tenenbaum appeal

The US Supreme Court has refused to hear the Joel Tenenbaum case in a case brought by the Recording Industry Association Of America's which resulted in a win for the RIAA and damages of  $675,000 awarded by the jury for illegally sharing 30 songs online. The damages were then reduced 90% by the trial judge Nancy Gertner on constitutional grounds but the appeals court subsequently criticised the judge's process, and reinstated the $675,000 damages sum. Tenenbaum's legal advisor Charles Nesson hoped to persuade the Supreme Court that his client's damages were indeed unconstitutionally high and that Judge Gertner was correct when reducing the award. But the Supreme Court declined to hear Nesson's arguments, meaning Team Tenenbaum will have to continue to fight the damages sum in the lower courts, which could involve several more hearings and appeals yet.

Tenenbaum has said publicly that he (unsurprisingly) doesn't have $675,000, and has previously suggested he'd have to bankrupt himself if that figure stood

Mama to split on sale?

Its seems HMV’s live division, the MAMA Group, may be split up before sale after all, though it’s possible the flagging retailer might actually keep hold of some of MAMA’s operations.  According to Sky News and City AM, there is a rumour that AEG is indeed only interested in the MAMA venues business, in particular the flagship Hammersmith Apollo, and that HMV is considering keeping hold of the other parts of its live division, in the short term at least.

Monday, 21 May 2012

Gaga provokes more protests

Lady Gaga's 'Born This Way Ball' tour of South East Asia has hit more problems in the Philippines with Christian groups joining Muslim protests against her concerts. In particular Christians have said that they are appalled by the use of a crucifix in “a very denigrating manner” as were the lyrics as one of her songs “where she is belittling Jesus Christ himself and praising Judas as heroic. It us understood the concerts in Manilla will monitored for any hint of "blasphemy, devil worship, nudity or lewd conduct".    

40,000 fans in the Catholic-majority nation have snapped up tickets of up to 15,840 pesos ($370) each to watch the U.S. singer perform in Manila.

Robin Gees dies

Robin Gibb, The Bee Gees singer songwriter has died aged 62 after a long battle with cancer. The Bee Gees have sold more than 200 million albums in their long and hugely successful career.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

PRS live income up by 8.2%

Collections from the UK live sector in 2011 were up 8.2% at £22.5 million. PRS for Music puts the increase down to a boom in festival acts and stadium tours in the UK. £20.8 million was collected in 2010 which were depressed by the World Cup. £22.3 million was collected in 2009 from live music.

Friday, 18 May 2012

London Olympic Stadium up for grabs?

Live entertainment giants Live Nation and AEG Live are both expected to bid to operate London's Olympic Stadium after this year's Games, according to Bloomberg. The Olympics venue will be third biggest stadium in the UK, behind Wembley and Twickenham. It has long been expected that West Ham football club would become the main tenants at the stadium after the Olympics, though various legal challenges by rival football clubs have hindered those plans.

Live Nation take the Cream

Ingenious Media Active Capital (Imac), the live events company based on the Cream electronic music brand, has sold its stake in Cream to Live Nation the world's biggest concert promoter. This will include the music festival Creamfields which this year takes place at Daresbury Estate, Halton, Cheshire over August Bank Holiday 2012.

Adam goes Global

In the UK, Global Radio has appointed Paul Adam, a long-time Universal Music executive and Popstars judge, who was most recently MD of the Vertigo imprint, to head up its artist management and music publishing businesses. Adam will become Director of both Global Talent and Global Publishing on the 1st June. The Global music companies currently work with the likes of Cover Drive, Lawson, Ellie Goulding, The Vaccines and The Wanted.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Tributes pour in for Donna Summer

Disco queen Donna Summer has died aged 63. Famous for disco classics including I Feel Love and Love To Love You Baby, her legacy was praised by stars including Dolly Parton, Sir Elton John and Kylie amongst many many others. 

Her family said they were "at peace celebrating her extraordinary life and her continued legacy". Kylie Minogue described her as "one of my earliest musical inspirations", while Dolly Parton said "she was the disco queen and will remain so". Sir Elton  said Summer was more than the "queen of disco", adding: "Her records sound as good today as they ever did. Duran Duran keyboardist Nick Rhodes said: "It's extremely rare that you hear one song that completely changes the way you perceive music. I Feel Love achieved that." and singer Marc Almond recalled how Summer's work with Italian synthesiser pioneer Giorgio Moroder had "changed the face of music and changed my life". Finally soul legend  Aretha Franklin said it was "shocking to hear about the passing of Donna Summer. In the 70s, she reigned over the disco era and kept the disco jumping. Who will forget “Last Dance.” A fine performer and a very nice person.”

Donna Summer Sudano died after a battle against lung cancer which she believed she contracted from inhaling toxic particles after the September 11 terrorist attack in new York in  2001

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Stichfest gets a licence

The Kandiyohi County Board has given the go-ahead to a Memorial Day weekend music festival in the Twin Lakes area north of Willmar, Minnesota. The music festival is planned for a 10-acre site near Twin Lakes in Green Lake Township on May 25th and May 26th. It is for this year only and organizer David Nelson told the Planning Commission that proceeds from the festival, called Stitchfest, will be donated to a veterans' organisation. The County Board of Commissioners decided that Nelson must pay $2,000 up front to cover law enforcement costs as well as comply with a list of strict conditions. County Administrator Larry Kleindl said county officials estimate that the cost of law enforcement personnel during the concerts will be approximately $2,400. Two deputies and two reserve officers will be on duty during concert times. Nelson will be required to pay the costs beyond $2,000 after the festival. At a Planning Commission meeting earlier this month, neighbours had objected to the festival, concerned about noise, dust, garbage, traffic and parking. Nelson told the Planning Commission he expects to host at least eight bands from a range of musical genres and provide camping, food, merchandise, vendors and games for 300 to 500 paying guests. A midnight curfew will apply and food booths must comply with requirements of the county sanitarian. No parking will be allowed in a road right of way. No alcohol will be sold on the premises.

Muslim hardliners stop Gaga show

The police in Indonesia have halted what would have been the biggest concert on her Asian tour after fears that her sexual imagery and risque dance routines would undermine Islamic values and corrupt youth. Muslim hardliners under the Islamic Defenders Front banner claimed the Born This Way Ball would undermine the country's moral fibre and had planned to blocade the country's airport. The 52,000 capacity show at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium was scheduled for June 3rd, promoted by Big Daddy Promotions. The IDF's Salim Alatas told reporters  "She's a vulgar singer who wears only panties and a bra when she sings and she stated she is the envoy of the devil's child and that she will spread satanic teaching. This is dangerous." Police refused a licence for the show.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Boss Act Back

New Jersey U.S. Representative is taking a second stab at passing national legislation that would bring transparency to online ticket sales and target the controversial use of computer technology in the purchase of concert tickets. U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, announced that he plans on re-introducing "The BOSS ACT," dubbing this incarnation the "2012 Tour." Pascrell previously introduced a bill by the same name in 2009, but the Bill never made it past the initial committee stage. The legislative initiative according to Pascrell, a response to the glitches that occurred in January of 2012 when Bruce Springsteen tickets went on sale for the New Jersey reminding fans and the congressman of Springsteen's 2009 concert tour, which saw fans being redirected to Ticketmaster's secondary ticketing website and sparked a lawsuit that ended with a $16.5 million settlement.
 Bruce Springsteen at Glastonbury 2009  (c) 2009 Nick Cordes / The Television Company 

Live Nation Push social media app

Live Nation added a new social media app with the official launch of its Concert Calendar Facebook app. Launching following a six month beta test, the Concert Calendar will create an interactive calendar for users, allowing them to keep up to date on upcoming events featuring their favourite performers

Lopez and Inglesias double header

Jennifer Lopez  is scheduled to embark on a 20-city US tour this summer with co-headliner  Enrique Inglesias. This tour makes up the North American leg of the duo's world tour, which kicks off in South America in June. 

Friday, 11 May 2012

Blink and Bjork cacellations

Blink 182 have had to cancel part of their US/Canadian tour after Blink drummer Travis Barker has had to have his tonsils taken out - It's not yet known whether Blink's UK shows, the first of which falls on 7 Jun at the Birmingham NIA. And Björk has issued an apology to all those disappointed by her withdrawing from Hungary's Balaton Sound, Russia's Afisha Picnic, and both editions of Spain's Primavera festivals. The Icelandic singer, who has previously cancelled two South American shows, has an "inflamed nodule" in her throat, has been ordered by doctors to rest her voice for six weeks.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Live Click launched at Coachella

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival has revealed that over 30,000 fans registered to‘ Live Click’ around the festival site in 2012 meaning  that ticket holders could use their RFID wristbands to check in and update their status on Facebook – a global first for the technology and festival worlds on this scale.  The technology, developed by leading RFID live event specialists Intellitix, used various touch points (portals) positioned at key areas around the festival site during both weekends. Additionally, RFID entrance portals that validated each wristband, allowed registered users to automatically check in as they arrived. Fans keen to share their experience with friends online signed up to the service when registering their wristbands at

Rough Beats 2012 cancelled

The organisers of independent festival Rough Beats have cancelled the event's tenth edition, saying  "financial pressures" and a "difficult environment" were to blame.  Set to take place from 8th-10th June in Clapham, Yorkshire, headliners were to be Pulled Apart By Horses and Gruff Rhys. The third headliner Azealia Banks had already withdrawn from her slot a fortnight ago. Refunds for all purchased tickets are promised and a statement was issued saying "It is with a very heavy heart that we write to you to announce that, due to financial pressures, we have no responsible option but to cancel Rough Beats Festival 2012. The decision to cancel has not been made lightly - indeed it goes against every instinct of our hearts - but not to do so would put all the contractors, contributors, artists, traders and suppliers at risk of substantial losses".

Monday, 7 May 2012

Bastie Boy Adam Yauch dies at 47

Adam Yauch has died aged just 47 after a long battle with cancer. The Brooklyn born Yauch first came to prominence with the Beastie Boys in 1986 with 'Fight For The Rights To Party' and the pioneering trio were the first rap group to top the US charts with 'Licensed to Ill'. 

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Venues gear up for a digital future

AEG's David Jones highlighted the growing importance of digital communication at the popular New Technology Panel at ILMC 24 and explained about AEG's moves to provide wi-fi access for fans and venues. Now the San Jose Mercury News announced that the NBA's Golden State Warriors have launched a free Wi-Fi network within their Oracle Arena However, the Wi-Fi network is said to be only the tip of the technological iceberg for the Warriors. "We're really just scratching the surface," Warriors' team president Rick Wells told the Mercury News, "I really feel like sports will benefit as much as anything from technology today." In addition to the Warriors' free Wi-Fi network, the team's management has also installed a new antenna system that will improve cell phone reception within the arena, tackling one of the most common complaints from sporting patrons. Finally, the Warriors have most recently launched an iPhone app for fans.  Other venues are similarly gearing up for the digital age: The NFL's San Franciso 49ers  announced that their new stadium will be crafted with an eye to appeasing the technological needs of their fans and when the New York jets and Giants built their new MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, they spared no expense in giving fans the technology they desired. The stadium partnered with Verizon to create a "high-speed wireless network" to allow fans the ability to utilize their phones as they wished and an app was released allowing fans access to up-to-the-minute team information, parking alerts, and information on which concession lines were the shortest.

Friday, 4 May 2012

EC get more EMI time

The European Commissions review of Vivendi's Universal Music Group bid to buy British record label EMI's recorded music unit from Citigroup Inc has been extended for the second time to Sept 6th from Aug 8th after the Commission asked for more time.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Mama managers join Red Light

Billboard has confirmed that current MAMA executives James Sandom and Cerne Canning, part of the Supervision management team, will move over to US-based management group Red Light. Red Light have said that Sandom and Canning will set up a new London outpost for the company. Meanwhile, a third former SuperVision manager, Deb Fenstermacher, will join Red Light in New York. The move brings the artists managed by the three managers into the Red Light fold, including: Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs, The Vaccines, Crystal Castles, The Cribs, White Lies, Here We Go Magic, Zulu Winter, Deap Vally, Crocodiles and Asobi Seksu. Two other SuperVision managers, Dave Cronen and Nigel Templeman, have reverted to the agency they ran prior to forming an alliance with MAMA in 2008, Trust Management.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Badminton cancellation to cost insurers £3 million

The Badminton Horse Trials in Gloucestershire in the West of England have been cancelled after prolonged heavy rain and flooding. It is expected that insurers will pick up the £3 million bill and full refunds will be made to ticket holders. As estimated 180,000 were expected to attend the annual event in what would have been its 63rd year and local business including hotels, bars and shops are estimated to have lost tens of millions of pounds in revenues, and the event's charities will also lose out. It is expected that in addition to the refund of ticket income, no sponsorship or television rights revenue will be collected. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were due to attend the event which would have profiled Olympic competitors. It is the wettest and coldest April in many parts of England since records began
Speculation that controversial MP3 resale service ReDigi wouldn't be able to afford to fight its legal battle with EMI has been dismissed by the company behind the digital resale service. Rumours started to circulate when lawyers working for the digital start-up filed a motion to withdraw from the case last week. ReDigi have said they now have a new firm of lawyers representing them in their battle with EMI who failed to obtain summary judgement in February after the judge hearing the case ruled that the debate on the legality of the resale of MP3 digital files was too complicated for a judgement to be made without a full trial. He added that the dispute at the heart of this case was a "fascinating issue" that "raises a lot of technological and statutory" points.

Live Nation in for an Olympic million

Live Nation will pay London's Royal Parks over a million pounds in rental fees to stage various live entertainments during the Olympics, according to Event magazine. According to Event, Live Nation will cover its estimated costs via merchandising, the sale of food and drink concessions, hospitality packages and for certain (but not all) of the events, ticket revenues.