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AND THE EMMY
GOES TO...
TV is where the top talent can be found. (9/23a)
ONCE AGAIN, IT DIDN'T STAY IN VEGAS
A weasel photo gallery (9/23a)
U.K. MIDWEEKS: LIAM LEAPS TO #1
Oh, brother (9/23a)
NEW RELEASES: BLINK AND YOU'LL MISS 'EM
Guitars are having a moment. (9/23a)
SUN, SUN, SUN,
HERE IT COMES
Abbey Road came out 50 years ago, and it still sounds ahead of the curve. (9/23a)
MORE RAINMAKERS
The players who made it happen.
WHAT ABOUT THOSE LEAKS?
Even funnier in French.
RIHANNA'S ETA
And about $50m in funding.
THE BUNDLE BUNGLE
When will the rules change?
Blighty Beat
SPINNUP UK UPSTREAMS TO UMOD
9/9/19

Spinnup, the global digital distribution platform originally launched in Sweden by UMG in 2013, has accelerated its presence in the UK by partnering with Universal Music On Demand (UMOD). The UK label will establish new ventures and partnerships, along with increasing the distribbery's breadth of service and attracting new users. 

The platform has become the go-to place for artists taking their first steps in the biz, and allows artists to distribute their music to all major streaming platforms while maintaining 100% of their rights and royalties. 

Unique to the platform, Spinnup also operates as a cutting-edge A&R tool with the team at UMOD constantly listening to new music uploaded. The label has a growing team dedicated to spotting hot tracks bubbling up and has already announced their first artist signings discovered via the platform: London-based Nigerian afro-pop solo act A.T, indie singer-songwriter Devon from The Forest of Dean, and Italian house producer Manuel Costa.

Simon Barnabas, Managing Director, UMOD says, “The UMOD team are combining their wealth of artist marketing campaign experience and deep understanding of track data analysis with promoting this innovative platform for distributing brand new talent; ultimately aiming to identify and sign the very best to the label. UMOD are then partnering with these exceptional artists to build a successful music industry career together.” 

Next up will see the launch of the Spinnup Academy—an educational visual content series featuring senior industry experts, helping users understand the fundamentals of their area of the music business. 

U.K. MIDWEEKS: MALONE MANIA
9/9/19

Post Malone is leading an all new Top 3 on the U.K.’s Official Albums midweeks today with Hollywood’s Bleeding (Island) currently outselling closest rival, Status Quo, by 2:1. He has the highest new entry on singles, too, starting at #7 with the album’s title track.

Over on the U.K.'s Official singles midweeks, Malone has three tracks in the Top 10 with “Circles” rising to #4 from #11, “Hollywood’s Bleeding” new in at #7 and “Saint Tropez” starting at #9.

Status Quo are on course for their 25th Top 10 with Backbone (Ear Music) at #2, followed by British rapper Aitch, who has fast become a priority act for Sony U.K., with his second EP, Aitch20 (Since 93), at #3.

Other new entrants include Melanie Martinez with her second studio album, K-12 (Atlantic), at #6, while Jax Jones EP Snacks rises 10 places to #9 following the release of its full-length edition, Snacks (Supersize) (Polydor), on Friday.

…Read more

U.K. CHARTS: REY'S F*#!ING #1
9/6/19

Lana Del Rey registered her fourth U.K. #1 album as Norman F**king Rockwell (Polydor) shoots to the top slot in its debut week. Ed Sheeran, who has the #2 album, continues to rule the singles side of the Official U.K. Chart thanks to a new remix.

Del Rey finished with 12,000 more sales than Sheeran’s No 6 Collaborations Project (Atlantic). Two-thirds of her tally came from physical sales; No 6 Collaborations Project is the week's most streamed album.

Tool returns to the Official Albums Chart for the first time in more than 13 years, with Fear Inoculum (Music for Nations) going in at #4, while the 25th anniversary reissue of Oasis' debut Definitely Maybe (Big Brother) lands at #6.

The solo debut from Kasabian’s Serge Pizzorno, The S.L.P. (Sony), is #7 followed by British rapper Kano’s Hoodies All Summer (Parlophone) at #8. Sheryl Crow returns to the Top 10 for the first time in 16 years with her final album Threads (Big Machine) at #10.

…Read more

PARLOPHONE A&R GROWS
9/5/19

Parlophone co-President Nick Burgess welcomes Jin Jin, left, and Ina Rasinger to the label’s A&R team.  

Warner U.K. label Parlophone Records has bolstered its A&R team with the appointment of Ina Rasinger, who joins from Sony label Columbia in Germany, and songwriter Jin Jin, who is known for her work with Jess Glynne, as well as writing for artists including Jax Jones, RayeMadison BeerSigala and David Guetta.

Rasinger (formerly Jedlicka) will join as A&R Director on 1/15 next year. At Columbia Germany, she was Head of A&R, and played a key role in the success of British artists in that territory. After being dropped by Syco, she re-signed British singer James Arthur and was integral in the success of his #1 comeback single, "Say You Won't Let Go," which led to him being re-signed in London.

Other artists she's recently worked with include Rhodes and Richard Fairlie, and she was also responsible for signing Tap Management development artist Grace Carter.

Jin Jin, who joins the team as Senior A&R Manager immediately, is a multi-platinum songwriter who co-wrote Jess Glynne's U.K. #1 hit “Hold My Hand,” for which she received an Ivor Novello nomination and BMI Award. She also wrote Tinie Tempah's #1 Jess Glynne collaboration “Not Letting Go,” as well as “Real Love” (#2) and “Right Here” (#6). Alongside her new role working across a broad roster of artists at Parlophone, Jin Jin will continue to run her publishing and management company, Jinsing.

Nick Burgess, co-President of Parlophone Records, said: "As we continue to evolve the new Parlophone, our mission above all is to be home to the most innovative and forward-thinking artists of our generation. Jin Jin and Ina both embody our values perfectly.”

KONTRABAND ON THE RUN
9/5/19

Sony Music U.K. has ventured into the merchandise business with the acquisition of British company Kontraband. The firm will be working closely with its U.S. counterpart at Sony, The Thread Shop.

The acquisition aims to enhance and strengthen Sony Music’s presence in the growing area of merchandise, and will see Kontraband working collaboratively with each of Sony Music’s labels and their extensive artist rosters.

 “We are continuously looking for ways to diversify our business and the acquisition of Kontraband allows us to help our artists enhance their brand and deliver new and exciting commercial opportunities,” said Nicola Tuer, COO of Sony Music U.K. and Ireland.

Kontraband’s Paul Entwistle and Justin Smith have more than 20 years of experience handling merchandise for artists including Camila Cabello, Kylie Minogue, Iggy Pop, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, The Streets and Keane. As part of the deal, they will now relocate their office the Sony U.K. headquarters in Kensington from Finsbury Park in London.

DAVE, IDLES LEAD AIM AWARDS
9/4/19

British rapper Dave and punk band IDLES were the big winners at Tuesday night's AIM Independent Music Awards in London, while Partisan was named Best Independent Label and Allen Kovac was honoured as an Innovator with a video tribute from Sir Richard Branson.

Dave, who is developed and managed by Neighbourhood, claimed Best Independent Album for his #1 debut, Psychodrama, and Best Independent Track for #1 "Funky Friday" f/Fredo. Partisan-signed band IDLES took home Best [Difficult] Second Album for Joy as an Act of Resistance as well as UK Independent Breakthrough after a hugely successful year that has seen them being awarded an IVOR, nominated at the BRITs, and embark upon a worldwide tour that culminates with a date at London's 10k capacity Alexandra Palace in December.

Hosted by Lauren Laverne at Camden’s Roundhouse for the first time, Partisan was honoured for a roster that also includes fellow award nominees Fontaines D.C as well as Cigarettes After Sex and John Grant

…Read more

U.K. MIDWEEKS: LANA'S RAY OF HOPE
9/2/19

Lana Del Rey is heading for her fourth #1 on the U.K.’s Official Albums Chart with Norman F**king Rockwell (Polydor), outperforming closest competitor Tool by more than double. Over on singles, Ed Sheeran and Stormzy are on course for a second week at the top.

Tool sits behind Lana at #2 with Fear Inoculum (Music for Nations), which looks set to become their highest charting album in the U.K. to date.

Oasis’ debut album, Definitely Maybe (Big Brother), has risen to #5 thanks to a 25th anniversary reissue.

The third highest new albums entry today is the self-titled solo debut of Kasabian’s Serge Pizzorno, The S.L.P. (Sony), starting at #6. The sixth album from Kano, Hoodies All Summer (Parlophone), opens at #8, and Sheryl Crow’s final studio album, collaborative project Threads (Big Machine), is at #9.

Over on the U.K.'s Official Singles midweeks, Sheeran f/Stormzy’s “Take Me Back to London” (Atlantic) is set for a second week at #1. New Sony priority, British rapper Aitch, has risen into the Top 5 with “Taste (Make it Shake)” (Since 93) up three places to #3. Joel Corry’s “Sorry” (Atlantic) is also new in the Top 5, up two to #5.

The highest new singles entry at the halfway point is Post Malone’s “Circles” (Island) at #10. He also makes an appearance in the title of Sam Feldt’s “Post Malone” f/Rani (Atlantic), which has risen 13 places to #13 today.

U.K. CHARTS: LOVER 'S LANE
8/30/19

Taylor Swift’s Lover (Virgin EMI) shifted 53k combined chart sales to claim her fourth U.K. Official Albums #1, making her the first female artist to land four chart-topping albums this decade in the U.K.

Lover’s sales in Blighty were made up of 27m track streams, 24k physical sales and 11k downloads. The first-week number is down significantly from predecessor Reputation, which shifted 84k across its first seven days, as well as 1989 (90k) and Red (61k). That's at least in part to do with declining album sales overall. For context, Ed Sheeran holds this year’s fastest-selling album title so far with No.6 Collaborations Project, which shifted 125k first week.

Swift is one of only seven acts with four chart-topping albums this decade in the U.K.— Michael Bublé, One Direction, Robbie Williams, Olly Murs, Eminem and Sheeran are the others.

…Read more