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1 TRENDING TOPIC: COLUMBIA X 3
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Blighty Beat
EDM BIZ LAUNCHES INCLUSION ORG
4/13/21

The Electronic Music Inclusion Initiative has been launched to tackle harassment and discrimination in the electronic music industry. The EMII’s work starts with an online survey.

A number of organizations have joined forces to launch EMII in partnership with tech start-up InChorus (which provides a confidential, data-driven platform to address bias and harassment), including Pioneer DJBeatportSentric Music GroupAFEMMixmagRAIMS and Women in CTRL. Its arrival follows claims of gender pay disparity and toxic workplace culture in electronic music over recent years, while stats point to a clear lack of gender equality in the industry. In DJ Mag’s Top 100 list in 2019, only five of the top 100 were women, while in 2020, there were 14. In the Top 150 clubs, the annual percentage of female DJs is just 6%. 

The arrival of the initiative has been driven by feedback from artists and music professionals who have cited instances where inequality exists. Their shared common goal is for real, pro-active change and inclusion. The survey, which will be online for four weeks, aims to collect evidence of microaggressions and other forms of harassment in order to inform the steps the industry can take to address them. Its findings will be released to the wider industry. 

Pioneer DJ’s General Manager, Mark Grotefeld, who is the lead partner of EMII, said, “We hope this will continue the progress and empower individuals to share their experiences of bias and harassment and encourage the industry to adopt robust listening tools that enable targeted action and progress.”

“We have a duty to prevent harassment of all kinds and cultivate a ‘speak up’ culture across the sector,” InChorus co-Founder Rosie Turner (pictured) added. “Ultimately, cultures are shaped by the inappropriate behaviours that are tolerated every day. We are serious about culture change and believe that bringing actionable data to this conversation is key, as what is measured can be improved.”

WARNER'S LOVELL JOINS NAPSTER 
4/13/21

British exec Emmy Lovell has exited Warner Music to join Napster Group as Chief Strategy Officer following its acquisition by MelodyVR. She joins ahead of the launch of Napster's new platform later this year.

Lovell is tasked with driving the strategic direction and growth of the company. The Napster platform claims to be the first-ever music entertainment platform to combine immersive visual content and music streaming. 

Napster Group CEO and founder Anthony Matchett, to whom Lovell reports, said: “Emmy’s wealth of industry experience is going to be a real asset to Napster. She truly values the importance of musicians and their craft and is a champion for artist rights and compensation.”

Lovell has held a variety of senior digital roles, most recently serving as Executive Vice President of Warner's WEA Europe following nearly eight years at the company. Across her career, she has developed digital promotions for artists such as Kylie Minogue and The Chemical Brothers and led campaigns for GorillazDeadmau5Danger Mouse and Tinie Tempah.

U.K. MIDWEEKS: A 7TH #1 FOR TAYLOR?
4/12/21

Taylor Swift looks set to top the U.K. Official Albums Chart on Friday with Fearless (Taylor’s Version) (EMI) currently ahead of its closest competitor by 11k sales. Over on singles, “Rapstar” (Columbia) by Polo G is new at #2.

The newly recorded version could become Swift’s seventh #1 in the U.K. and, should it hold onto its midweek peak, Swift will take third place on the list of female artists with the most chart-topping albums behind Madonna (12) and Kylie Minogue (8). The original 2008 version of Fearless peaked at #5.

Following its vinyl release, Ariana Grande’s Positions (Island) is on track to return to the Top 40 at #2, while French composer Jean-Michel Jarre is heading for his highest-charting album since 1988 with Amazonia (RCA) at #4.

Following his death Friday, two greatest hits collections from DMX could enter the Top 10 for the first time; The Best Of (UMG) is #6 and The Definition of X: The Pick of the Litter is #10.

…Read more

 

U.K. CHARTS: SNUTS SECURE #1
4/9/21

The debut release from The SnutsW.L. (Parlophone), has landed at #1 on the U.K.’s Official Albums Chart while Demi Lovato takes second place. Over on singles, Lil Nas X remains on top.

In topping the chart, The Snuts become the first Scottish band in 14 years to enter at #1 with their debut; the last to do so were The View with Hats Off to the Buskers.

Lovato’s Dancing with the Devil… The Art of Starting Over (Island) is her highest-charting record to date in the U.K.; her previous peak was #5 in 2017.

Justin Bieber’s Justice (EMI) is the most-streamed album this week, down one place to #3, while London post-punk band Dry Cleaning are new at #4 with their debut, New Long Leg (4AD).

Lil Tjay’s Destined 2 Win (Columbia) is new at #7, while The Fratellis’ Half Drunk Under a Full Moon (Cooking Vinyl) lands at #12.

…Read more

U.K.'S BIGGEST SELLERS IN Q1
4/9/21

Dua Lipa claims the #1 position on the list of the best-selling albums of Q1 2021 in the U.K. with Olivia Rodrigo on top at singles. Celeste’s Not Your Muse was the only British album released this year to appear in the Top 10.

Lipa's Future Nostalgia (Warner Records) has logged 33 weeks in the Official Albums Top 10 since arriving just over a year ago, clocking 334k U.K. sales to date. That includes 69k this year, boosted by the release of its Moonlight Edition.

In total, there are six (and a half, counting Fleetwood Mac) British releases in the albums Top 10; only Celeste’s debut, Not Your Muse (Polydor), was released this year. At #2, Foo FightersMedicine at Midnight (Columbia) brings 2021’s total release tally up to two.

Universal counts five albums, Warner follows with three and Sony has two.

Rodrigo's “drivers license” (Polydor) is the U.K.’s biggest song of 2021 so far with 707k chart sales to date, including 84.2m streams. The singles Top 10 is slightly more current than the albums list:  Of the seven British-born releases, two arrived this year, and Rodrigo increases that count to three when including international tracks. The label’s tally is exactly the same as albums.

...Read more

U.K. MULLS COVID PASSPORTS
4/8/21

The use of COVID passports or certificates to grant access to events and venues has divided opinions in the U.K., with critics saying the idea could be discriminatory and infringe on freedom, while others, including Reading and Leeds promoter Melvin Benn, say they could remove the need for social distancing.

COVID-status certificates, which would likely be an app-based document, are being discussed amongst British politicians as one of the measures that could enable the safe return of social life. The document would show vaccination status and/or a recent negative test and are said to be part of a number of measures being tested in the pilot events the Government is currently running, ahead of the possible return of gigs at the end of June.

However, there's growing opposition to the idea. Liverpool comedy club Hot Water, which was supposed to be running the first pilot event on 4/16, has pulled out of the scheme after receiving backlash as a result of being linked to the proposals for coronavirus health certificates. Alongside 4,000 negative messages, club co-owner Paul Blair said he received "a lot of refund requests" for the now canceled pilot event. "There’s a lot of damage, whether it’s short- or long-term it’s hard to gauge because we’re not open,” he said.

...Read more

 

 

 

YOUNG, YES; TURKS, NO
4/7/21

British independent label Young Turks, which works with Arlo Parks, FKA Twigs and The xx, has changed its name to Young to remove any association with the similarly named group that carried out the Armenian Genocide beginning in 1915 .

The label’s founder Caius Pawson said Young Turks was originally named after the Rod Stewart song. “When I first heard the song, it took a week of 2005-era internet searches to find out what it was and even longer to understand its meaning,” he said. “The name intrigued me, evoking the solidarity of youth. In 2005, it seemed to perfectly sum up what we were—teenagers, wanting and waiting to do something, anything.”

Since then, Pawson said he’s become aware of the deeper history of the term relating to the genocide. “Through ongoing conversations and messages that have developed our own knowledge around the subject, it’s become apparent that the name is a source of hurt and confusion for people.

“We loved the name for what it meant to us, but in retrospect should have listened more carefully to other voices and acted more quickly. We have always tried to affect positive change and knowing what we do now, it's only right that we change our name.”

Other artists signed to Young include Sampha, Kamasi Washington, Jamie xx and Ethan P Flynn.

U.K. HAS A TEST FOR RETURN OF FANS
4/6/21

The U.K. Government will be putting on live events to test the waters ahead of a possible reopening of venues and nightclubs this summer. Gigs could be back on by the end of June.

The first of nine initial pilots from the Government's science-led Events Research Program will take place 4/16 at the 300-capacity Hot Water Comedy Club in Liverpool; it’s an indoor seated event. Second is the the FA Cup Semi-Final at Wembley on 4/18 that will host 4k people seated outdoors. More events ranging from 1k to 8k capacity to follow. The final event in the pilot program is the FA Cup Final at Wembley, which will take place on 5/15 and allow 21k people to watch as outdoor seated spectators.

The program will be used to provide key scientific data and research into how small- and large-scale events could be permitted to safely reopen in line with the Prime Minister's roadmap out of lockdown as part of step 4, commencing no earlier than 6/21.

…Read more