Music News

- Reverberations from Taylor Swift's decision to remover her catalog from music streaming service Spotify are being felt industry-wide, as evidenced by statements made by Sony Music Entertainment CFO Kevin Kelleher at an investor conference in Tokyo this week.

A lot of conversation has taken place over the past week. What it all really comes down to is, how much value is the music company and the artist getting from the different consumption methods?  We are very encouraged with the paid streaming model. The key question is whether or not the free ad-supported services are taking away from how quickly and to what extent we can grow those paid services.”

- Music Key, YouTube's new music streaming service is now out in beta form and is being praised for its ease of use. Subscribers will need to sign up for a six month trial period attached to a payment format/method of their choosing and immediately have access to the service.

However, Global Music Rights, a music clearing house similar to ASCAP and BMI, which represents dozens of writers including Bruno Mars, Pharrell Williams and Smokey Robinson, has asked YouTube to remove some 20,000 songs by GRM affiliates. YouTube has acknowledged the request but has not acted on it as of yet, as required under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, a federal protecting websites that host copyrighted content from third parties.

- Apple will be bundling its recently acquired Beats Music with their next iOS. According to industry analysts, the company wants to make sure it does not lose ground to YouTube's Music Key service.

- Starting next month the Billboard 200 chart will take into account downloads and sales of individual songs. The chart lists the best selling 200 albums of the week and will count the sale of 10 songs and/or the streaming of 1,500 songs as the equivalent of one album sale. Billboard feels these numbers are "accepted industry benchmarks."

- Idris Elba is releasing his first album, titled mi Mandela. “[M]y music is so much more truthful...than my acting is. Music comes from my soul. I can connect with you more through my music,” stated the acclaimed 42 year old actor, who is also planning a hip-hop album for future release.