Ann and Nancy Wilson of Heart said Thursday night that Universal
Music Publishing and Sony BMG have sent a cease and desist notice to
the McCain-Palin campaign over their use of 'Barracuda.'
"We have asked the Republican campaign publicly not to use our music. We hope our wishes will be honored," the group said in a statement that
said they "condemn" the use of the song at the Republican convention.
Big Tobacco is trying a new approach to keep America's dwindling 45 million smokers in the fold, reports AdAge.
The solution: snus (they are always curiously plural), a pinch of steam-cured tobacco nestled in a tiny tea-bag-like pouch. Snus don't need to be spit out like traditional fermented dipping tobacco; they simply remain under your upper lip until you've gotten your nicotine fix.
According to the American Cancer Society and the medical journal Lancet,
if every smoker in America were to switch to snus, substantial
reductions in heart disease and certain cancers would be evident in a
This, on the heels of Amy Winehouse's emphysema diagnosis. The Sunday Mirror quoted Mitch Winehouse as saying that Amy has an
irregular heartbeat, and has been warned that she will have to wear an
oxygen mask unless she stops smoking drugs.
John Heneghan and Eden Brower of NY’s East River String Band are reviving rural blues. “Before radio took over in the mid-1930s, music was really interesting — people weren’t hearing each other. Now, you can hear the most popular thing on the radio and then everybody copies it. In the ’20s, music was different from state to state, county to county.” Robert Crumb, the iconic cartoonist and 78 record collector has befriended the band, along with his daughter, who is also an artist. Crumb has traded records in their apartment, sat in on their shows and, most recently, drew the cover art for “Some Cold Rainy Day.” Definitely something to be said for the days before mass influence. Has the envelope for innovation been pushed beyond its limits?
Walt Disney Co. executives are putting the finishing touches on a project of pressing importance: grooming Demi Lovato, a 15-year-old Texas girl, as a possible successor to Miley Cyrus, star of the Disney Channel's "Hannah Montana" and myriad other entertainment ventures. Read more (WSJ)
Fuse want to be more like MTV. Bigger and more mainstream. But will it be a bit like the fox and the grapes?
Big is not a strategy. MTV has evolved from a position of first to market...and over many decades and mistakes along the way. Is big the white space for Fuse? Fuse has picked up a lot of what MTV stopped doing - namely underground/indie music. Is the mistake to look at it from an age perspective rather than a music perspective? What part of the music ecosystem does MTV own? What does Fuse own? How can they grow that? It isn't about age it is about culture. Seeing the brand as a network of culture would allow to then grow from where they are rather than simply moving into the fuzzy pursuit of being "more mainstream".
I think that a "me-too" strategy like this is setting the brand up for some therapy down the road - which is ironic since one of the campaigns taglines is "Music is Therapy". Fuse stands for something now. Will some of that get lost as it dilutes. There are some questions to be raised here...it will be interesting to see how it plays out. I believe Fuse can have a much bigger audience than they do - but it is not an issue of demographics.
(from NY Times) For now, Fuse’s core viewing demographic falls within the ages of 12 to
24. But Fuse would like to move that range to 18 to 34, Ms. Dolan said,
and it is adjusting its mix to use more established artists with the
Fuse’s Web site on a recent visit showed links to wikis, or interactive forums, for lesser-known bands like Panic at the Disco and the Red Jumpsuit Apparatus. At the same time, MTV’s home page had pictures of Sarah Jessica Parker and Mike Myers, and links to music videos with big names like Rihanna and Usher.
(from Adweek) ....today's agencies are frequently leaving (jingle houses) out of the loop by licensing tracks from top and up-and-coming talent or using software tools to create their own music. One need look no further than Apple, which is concurrently running iTunes ads featuring the mega-band Coldplay and MacBook Air ads with up-and-comer Yael Naim.
It makes for some interesting dinner conversation when when one of your friends is an intellectual property lawyer (he used to represent Apple Records while going through the DJ Dangermouse fiasco). The topic certainly gets people's blood going. It represents the shift into a whole new way in which companies and consumers relate to the value of goods and services. And like other industries before them like cars and tobacco, reveals an attempt to dictate control over how the market functions. We must go through them. The consumer sees things differently. The struggle to change gets ugly - and often results in singling out folks for litigation. In this week's BusinessWeek an article focuses on a 45-year-old single mother who, after being sued by the record industry, is now taking the record industry to court. Tanya Andersen is going after the recording industry under conspiracy laws.
She argues the Recording Industry Association of America, the
industry's trade group, and its affiliates worked together on a broad
campaign to intimidate people into making financial payoffs. Read more
Thinking about open source and making process transparent to consumers seems to be part of almost every recommendation we make as planners today. I like to see how that unbundling and transparency feels emotionally. This clip of Imogen Heap sums up the joy and passion for me. Enjoy.
I have spent much time deconstructing Amy Winehouse both with clients and my students. There are many layers to explore that speak to an evolution and remixing of subculture trends. The roots of her big eye makeup makeup are touched upon in this interesting clip from Herald Tribune.