Random music news for Friday, August 17, 2018

(Via Tom)
Beetlejuice: The Musical. Jacob Hoggard, frontman for Hedley, has had his sex offence case put over to September. He had a lot of furniture to sell, too. Meanwhile, here’s the kind of thing going on in Spotify’s executive suite. Toronto’s Silver Dollar has been demolished. (Via Paul)
This New York townhouse linked to John and Yoko just sold. This rapper’s one-year-old-son wears a Rolex worth $34,000. Phil Collins is open to a Genesis reunion. He can’t play drums because of health issues, but his son can. But that’s only temporary. Was the last great rock’n’roll superstar band,…Korn? Regional accents. Why not call the Hall and Oates hotline? A cast is coming together. Not that I’m counting, but there are only two more weekends left before Labour Day. Having a rough day? Maybe. I never noticed this before: Spinal Tap is given a rating of 8/11 on IMDB. (Via Amber)
Rod Stewart is downsizing at his mansion. You know what’s confusing smart speakers? See? Here’s a look ahead to what Sonos is working on for the future. Distract yourself from that fact with music news for August 17, 2018. Amazon still leads in the smart speaker market, but Google is catching up. Using singing to ease the symptoms of Parkinson’s. (Via Tom)
Spotify has created a new program to mentor women engineers and producers. Here are the latest stats. Rumours of an Apple car won’t go away. This is a weird artist autograph scheme. This tiny Toronto record shop has been using Instagram to boost business–and with great success. Interpol is a great example of what’s old is new again when it comes to music. Another tragic suicide: Jill Janus of the band Huntress.
Random music news for Friday, August 17, 2018

A few more notes on Aretha Franklin (and yes, I will explain this featured picture)

A few more notes on Aretha Franklin (and yes, I will explain this featured picture)
Oops. Fox confused her with Patti LaBelle
When Fox got word of Aretha’s death, they used a photo of Patti LaBelle in their tribute. It was wall-to-wall coverage of the death of Aretha Franklin yesterday with obituaries and tributes. One source close to Franklin told The Daily Beast that after the election, she confided to associates that “no amount of money” could convince her to perform at the inauguration. In amongst all those stories were a couple of gems. Another knowledgeable source described her as “despising” everything he stood for, and as an avowed Hillary Clinton supporter. Yep here’s video pic.twitter.com/IIkMDuKB7e
— Zachary Pleat (@zpleat) August 16, 2018

There’s an Asteroid Named Aretha
It’s officially called 249516 Aretha and was spotted by a telescope in Mexico. Aretha was not a Trump fan
According to The Daily Beast, Aretha regularly bashed Donald Trump in private and refused an invitation to his inauguration. And if you’re still in the dark why Aretha has received so much attention, listen to this BBC documentary on her life and legacy.

Looking for a new CD player? This one is only $43,000 USD

Looking for a new CD player? This one is only $43,000 USD
It’s a monstrous bit of sculpture. A full review can be found here. And yes, it apparently can sound very, very good–if you mate with equally expensive amps, speakers and cables. While CD sales are in a death spiral, there are still billions and billions of discs out there.   And it only costs $43,000 USD. It’s assembled by a French manufacturer and distributed by Canada’s Wynn Audio. These music collections aren’t just going to disappear overnight, of course. Even though CD players are disappearing from cars and many players sit unused on shelves, people still treasure the music CDs contain and some will go to great lengths to extract the best possible sound from them. Such is the world of the uber-audiophile. Stereophile has a review of a new CD player called The Kalista DreamPlay.

Streaming’s next big problem? Fraudulent streaming numbers

While Tidal has denied the claims on multiple fronts, a company rep tells Variety that several investigators are currently on the ground at the company’s offices looking into a potential data breach. How many streams are real? Since views and likes are the currency of this realm, these practices are distorting our image of what is actually popular. As recently as May, Norwegian newspaper Dagens Næringsliv and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) accused the Jay-Z-owned service of falsifying tens of millions of streams for Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” and Kanye West’s “The Life of Pablo” albums. Fake stats, in other words. But perform the same manipulation with music streams, and it constitutes fraud. What is the role of bots? Keep reading. For Twitter, the fake accounts can create a shadow army of followers that has comparatively little monetary effect. The New York Times recently had an article on people who, for a price, will inflate the viewing numbers of YouTube videos. Variety takes a look. Tidal has found itself awash in accusations of data manipulation. Have we con back to the old days when we couldn’t trust anyone to tell us exactly how many records were sold? The music streaming industry is having the same problems. Are the companies themselves fudging the numbers? Twitter’s recent housecleaning of some 70 million fake and automated accounts illuminates just how pervasive audience manipulation has become in the digital era.
Streaming’s next big problem? Fraudulent streaming numbers

John and Yoko’s 1972 Imagine film is coming back to theatres

There’s also a 320-page book on the making of the album coming October 9, the day on which John would have turned 78. This new version features 15 minutes of never-before-seen footage recording “How Do You Sleep,” Lennon’s infamous shot at Paul McCartney. Here’s a trailer for the new version. In it, we see Lennon and Yoko Ono at work and guest appearances by everyone from Andy Warhol to Fred Astaire. Still fresh from the breakup of The Beatles, John Lennon got to work on music that would become the Imagine album. The film has now been restored frame-by-frame and is set for theatres on September 17. As he worked on the record through 1971, a film crew documented the process, resulting in a theatrical released the following year.
John and Yoko’s 1972 Imagine film is coming back to theatres

And the first platinum rock record of 2018 is…

And the first platinum rock record of 2018 is…
A toxicology report was promised in April. But on the morning she was to join them, Dolores was found dead in her hotel room. Last November, LA’s Bad Wolves recorded a version of the Cranberries’ “Zombie” and sent word to singer Dolores O’Riordan that they’d like her help on the final version of the song. [Sidebar: We still don’t have the official cause of death. The Recording Industry Association of America has now confirmed Bad Wolves’ “Zombie” to the first platinum-certified rock song of the year. It’s now mid-August and still nothing. It hit #1 on Spotify’s viral charge in over 40 counties and went to #1 on all kinds of iTunes. She agreed and the band flew to London for a studio session. (Which they did, by the way: $250,000 so far.)
The song became a huge rock hit, ascending to #1 on rock charts in 17 countries. There are rumblings that this was an accidental fentanyl overdose and that the family doesn’t want this news to come out.]
Bad Wolves released their version of the song anyway, promising to give the proceeds to Dolores’ children.

The Ongoing History of New Music encore presentation: The Completely Useless Information Show

The Ongoing History of New Music encore presentation: The Completely Useless Information Show
If you’re in any of those markets and you want the show, lemme know and I’ll see what I can do. This is the fun stuff, the bits of trivia that can give colour to a story, streams of data that can be mined for bar bets, one-upping your friends, and the sheer joy of being a music nerd. But I’m glad to know about it because–well, because it’s just fun.”
With that in mind, I’ve gather together much of this material and presented it to you in one big glop of illumination. My entire career is based on finding obscure information. It’s not going to make me richer, thinner, healthier, happier or more attractive. The more weird stuff I can find out about an artist, a band, a song, an album, a scene or a music-related technology–really anything to do with music–the better. The Ongoing History of New Music can be heard on the following stations:

102.1 The Edge/Toronto – Sunday night at 7
Live 88-5/Ottawa
107.5 Dave-FM/Kitchener
FM96/London – Sunday night at 7, Monday night at 11
Power 97/Winnipeg (Sunday nights at 11)
Rock 97.7/Grand Prairie – Sunday nights at 6. I call it “The Completely Useless Information Show.”
These are the songs included on the program. Yes, it means almost nothing to any practical aspect of my life. Trash Can Sinatras, Obscurity Knocks
Coldplay, Clocks (Live)
Skatenigs, Loudspeaker
Terje Insungset, The Other Side
Ramones, Teenage Lobotomy
Joy Division, Love Will Tear Us Apart (Live at the BBC)
Kurt Cobain, Divine and Bright
Radiohead, Everything in Its Right Place
White Stripes, Icky Thump
Eric Wilhite, our playlistist, has created this. However, obscure information doesn’t always equal useful information. This, by the way, is a great option for American listeners who are prevented from listening to the show live because of geo-blocking,

We’re still looking for more affiliates in Calgary, Kamloops, Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon, Brandon, Windsor,  Montreal, Charlottetown, Moncton, Fredericton, and St John’s and anywhere else with a transmitter. Sonic 102.9/Edmonton
The Zone/Victoria
The Fox/Vancouver
Live 105/Halifax
WAPS/WKTL The Summit/Arkon, Canton, Cleveland, Youngstown The show runs at 11 am Sunday. Let’s face it. Don’t forget that you can get the podcast version of this podcast through iTunes or wherever you get your on-demand audio. It’s the kind of enlightenment that makes anyone go “WOW! And yes, I will admit that some of the stuff I’ve learned over the years is pretty, well, useless. That’s COOL! But there’s also nothing wrong with useless information.

Random music news for Saturday, August 18, 2017

Very soon, Prince albums will be available for streaming. He probably wouldn’t like that, but what’s he gonna do? September 12. The estranged wife of Korn frontman Jonathan Davis has died under apparently tragic circumstances. Phish had to cancel their Curveball Festival because of phlooding. There’s a big gap in podcast listening when you compare English and French Canada. Here are my weekly music recommendations for Global News. (Funny that a band named Phish would be put off by a little water.)
The death of one of Michael Jackson’s friends has police wondering what really happened. Jack White played a show for Tesla employees last night. The first song? Speaking of whom, there’s a new movie in the works about a maid who won a dream date with Prince. Meanwhile, in Virginia, an argument over Aretha led to a shooting. (Via Gilles)
Discogs data says that sales of vinyl and (inexplicably) cassettes are continuing to grow. No surprise here: Sales of Aretha Franklin’s music has surged since her death on Thursday. Another music festival death has raised some big questions. Everyone’s attention was on the death of Aretha Franklin this week, but there is still some other music news to be reported. Wanna own Elvis’ mobile home? Here’s what I have for August 18, 2018. This article explains the problem. Guess for the unveiling of the new iPhone? Spotify is starting to fall behind its competitors when it comes to voice and lyrics. “The Big Three Killed My Baby.” More here. This singer is suing over a botched surgical procedure that left him with half a tongue. Do you recognize these obsolete technologies?
Random music news for Saturday, August 18, 2017

Get An Earful: Only Tears for Aretha at Riverfest

Get An Earful: Only Tears for Aretha at Riverfest
Riverfest really runs the gamut of genre inclusivity – One minute you can be enjoying rootsy alt-country from Skydiggers alum Jessy Bell Smith, the next you’re in a full-on mosh pit thanks to The Creepshow, channeling the psychobilly spirit of Poison Ivy and The Cramps. Not as much as Weaves mind you with their powerhouse singer Jasmyn Burke. Please don’t hold that against them. I can’t continue, however, without acknowledging Aretha Franklin’s passing. Of all the celebrities and fellow artists who commented on her, Win Butler may have said it best at Pukkelpop (as per Arcade Fire Tube): “Aretha Franklin is the actual greatest. Whatever your orientation or music tastes, get in on the sound splendor in postcard-perfect Elora. Rough Trade and Eric’s Trip blazed trails in the ’80s and ’90s, respectively, and it’s just so good to see icons Carole Pope and Julie Dorion still making music that rocks. Everyone else is a shadow.” The Queen of Soul is sure to have an influence on the gathered mass in “Ontario’s Most Beautiful Village”, just like she had on each one of us throughout her career. One event that is leading the way in terms of women not being taken for granted on lineups usually dominated by men is Riverfest Elora; this week’s #GetAnEarful playlist is devoted to the many homegrown female voices that will be heard over the course of August 17th through to the 19th. For whatever it’s worth, I’m-a pullin’ for Wide Open to take home this year’s Polaris Music Prize. I hereby decree it should be given to Aretha in perpetuity, but I’d be willing to allow CRJ another regally pop title as songs such as her “Run Away with Me” have graduated from simple guilty pleasures. July Talk are the only top-billed band with vocals that aren’t all uttered by dudes, graciously taking a break from recording Album #3 to bless the riverbanks with their positive presence. No crying of rivers allowed though! And I mean she’s not Aretha, but Ariana Gillis can the heavenly notes that will evoke fond memories. I guess you could say I’ve really, really come to like her. The dual-sex harmonies between spark plug Leah Fay and Peter Peter Dreimanis have clearly had an impact on up-and-comers Goodnight, Sunrise, who opened for Bon Jovi back in May. They’ve definitely rubbed off on and nurtured a new generation, namely in the shapely form of The Beaches. The term “Queen” is something that gets thrown around a lot these days, even towards Riverfest headliner Carly Rae Jepsen. Catch her Friday night set in the “Koop Tent” if you want to be metaphorically taken to church. It goes without saying that we are in a time of heightened awareness when it comes to things like equal representation in music.

This is interesting: Sony says three-quarters of a billion dollars will be distributed to artists

From Variety:
Sony Music has begun to distribute the $750 million in profit it collected from the April sale of 50% of its Spotify shares to the artists and distributed labels within the Sony system, Variety has confirmed. This is worth reading. Keep going. Once the dust settled, Sony sold a chunk of its shares for a profit of around $750 million. And in an interesting announcement, that money will be distributed to artists. Sony had a big stake in Spotify when the streamer was still a private company, meanwhile that when Spotify had its successful IPO, Sony saw its share equity balloon. As previously reported, Sony, which held 5.7% of Spotify’s stock when the streaming service went public, will not count the funds against the artists’ and label’s unrecouped earnings. The checks are in the mail, and set to arrive by the end of August. Rather, the “Spotify windfall,” as SME insiders are calling the disbursement, will be apportioned according to individual artist and label contract terms and based on earnings over the last 10 years — or since Sony’s initial investment in the Swedish streaming upstart — divisible against Sony’s own revenues from the Spotify stock gain for that time period. What does this mean to the thousands of artists, representatives and some two million titles involved?
This is interesting: Sony says three-quarters of a billion dollars will be distributed to artists

Ex-blink 182 Tom DeLonge and his team set out to acquire aerospace materials of unknown origin

Ex-blink 182 Tom DeLonge and his team set out to acquire aerospace materials of unknown origin
His To the Stars Academy, the group dedicated to blowing the lid off the vast government coverup of…well, something of unknown origin (aliens?) is forging ahead with its research. Here’s video from the group’s ADAM Research Project as they begin their journey “to collect, isolate, secure, transport, and successfully deliver materials reported to have come from advanced aerospace vehicles of unknown origin.”
Could these materials result in technological breakthroughs that will benefit all humandkind? Tom DeLonge doesn’t seem to miss being in blink-182 at all.

Arkells to issue a new album called Rally Cry

Produced by Eric Ratz (Knocking At The Door, Leather Jacket). In a series of social media posts accompanied by photos of the band in studio, Arkells explained how “there’s an urgency to recording these songs and hearing them back. Out Oct 19th. Whether it’s political songs or love songs, they share the same starting place. That record emboldened us and gave us confidence to trust our instincts even more. 8th’s SONiC Field Day in Edmonton). Mike D(eAngelis) did the art & wanted the art to reflect that same vibrant energy that made its way into the recordings as a result. We made Rally Cry in the midst of touring our last record, with our live show fresh in our minds each time we entered the studio. Mixed by Mark Needham (The Killers, Fleetwood Mac). 7th at Vancouver’s new SKOOKUM festival and Sept. pic.twitter.com/xGBpIFuZEu
— ARKELLS (@arkellsmusic) August 14, 2018

Lead singer Max Kerman apparently spent most of his time working on new dance moves, which he’ll hopefully bust out during Arkells’ last two Canadian shows for 2018 (Sept. Mastered by Greg Calbi (Arcade Fire, Kacey Musgraves). Rally Cry is the idea of a communal heart, a connected spirit. RALLY⚡️CRY. No tracklist or new music just yet, but there are two pro-shot videos from the aforementioned “Rally” while we count down the days ’til October 19th. With their triumphant homecoming still fresh in the minds of 20,000+ fans, Hamilton’s own Arkells are striking while the proverbial iron is hot, announcing new album Rally Cry will be released on October 19th. Next year is shaping up to be huge for these legit good Canadian boys. On Rally Cry, we’ve risen to the challenge and we’re playing for keeps. On our last album, Morning Report, we dipped our toes into the water, and learned that the boldest and most gratifying ideas were the ones where we took the biggest chances. We can’t wait to share it and play it live.”
The technical credits that were also shared include Canuck Eric Ratz at the production helm, who’s had a hand in fine-tuning Arkells’ irresistible rock-meets-soul sound that has made them this country’s next big music exports.
Arkells to issue a new album called Rally Cry

Random music news for Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Random music news for Wednesday, August 15, 2018
The good and bad of using preset sounds for your next song. Meanwhile, is Spotify on a collision course with the record labels? People are following Angus Young around Vancouver. Jeff Tweedy of Wilco has written a book about songwriting. On this day in 1965, the Beatles played to 60,000 people at Shea Stadium in New York. Too bad it was never made. Cool. Doesn’t work, apparently. This electric guitar can be broken down for easy transport and travel. Good. And as for August 15, 2018…

Here are your Canadian music sales and streams numbers for last week vs. AC/DC seems to be making a new album there. This would have been a strange sequel to the movie Gladiator. When Conan O’Brien moves to a half-hour format, there won’t be any more musical performances. Alexa is definitely coming to cars. Not music-related, but if you hate getting work emails after work…
Do you listening to recordings while you sleep in hopes of learning something? Meanwhile, Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys has these tips on how to write great lyrics. Maybe. Then again, it was written by Nick Cave. Here’s a very good read on the legacy of Aretha Franklin. Spotify has rolled out songwriting and producer credits on its mobile app. Good news for anyone who covets a Nokia banana phone: It’s back! This is considered to be the birth of stadium rock. a year ago: Total albums, -18.2%; digital albums, -21.2%; physical albums, -16.2%; CDs, -20.3%; vinyl, +49%; streams, 51.8% (1.046 billion streams for the week.)
Donald Trump and his base aren’t going to like this Pearl Jam concert poster.

More Music From The Inbox 15 Aug 2018 Silent Forum, Poetra Asantewa, Ninja Sex Party and More!

More Music From The Inbox 15 Aug 2018 Silent Forum, Poetra Asantewa, Ninja Sex Party and More!
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: GABI, “Whole With You”
Album: Empty Me

Experimental brilliance out of New York CIty
Sounds like:  taking a different road
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Meg Myers, “Little Black Death”  
Album: Take Me To The Disco

Making massive waves out of L.A. Artist: Silent Forum, “How I Faked The Moon Landing”  
Album: N/A

Such great stuff out of Cardiff, Wales
Sounds like:  the stuff I love to hear
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Poetra Asantewa, “Hungry”
Album: N/A

Unique and interesting with a voice of truth out of Ghana
Sounds like:  spoken word with a drum beat
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Ninja Sex Party, “Heart Boner”
Album: Cool Patrol

Brighton is home to this very talented outfit
Sounds like:  I just had to! Sounds like:  the unexpected danger
Link/Listen/Watch: Sounds like:  different ages brought together
Link/Listen/Watch:

Artist: Warm Drag, “Sleepover”
Album: In The Red

Interesting and effective and out of L.A.