The Latest! The Grammy Plunge, Ticket Transfer, Daisy Strikes, Conferences, Timbre, Spotify, Byrd, HMV…

Actually, Grammy viewership plunged this year, though there’s a giant asterisk (ie, Whitney Houston) to consider.  According to Nielsen stats, roughly 28 million tuned into the congratu-cast, a 28 percent drop that brings viewership back to 2011 levels.  But that’s still being considered a big win for the Recording Academy and CBS, and perhaps a moment of progression for a once-stodgy broadcast that featured Steely Dan awards and less-accessible artist spotlights.

This sorta changes things.  Ticketmaster is now letting paperless ticket buyers transfer their purchased tickets digitally though a freshly-released ‘Ticket Transfer’ feature.  That alleviates a major concern with paperless entry, and once again highlights significant, cultural differences from other ticketed industries like airlines.

Want to mess with the Daisy gang?  Now, Beats Electronics and Dr. Dre are suing Yamaha for copying design patents, and generally mirroring the Beats fashion approach towards headphones.  Which is, of course, exactly the sort of thing that Yamaha excels so beautifully at.

Another set of overlapping music industry conferences awaits.  Immediately after Presidents’ Day on February 19th, SF Musictech Summit kicks off in San Francisco’s Japantown, followed a day later by ‘DMW Music‘ in New York on the 20th and 21st.

And the latest to secure funding? Timbre, an extremely localized discovery app, which just grabbed $360,000 from Atlas Venture, Boston Seed Capital, and Bantam Group.

Spotify has a few announcements on tap.  The company just released a Windows Phone 8-optimized version, and also deployed versions in Portugal, Italy, and Poland.  Spotify is now available in 23 countries.

And the music world continues to mourn Donald Byrd, who passed last week at 80.  Byrd, a renowned jazz trumpeter and more controversial fusion artist, died on February 4th.

Elsewhere, the dismantling of HMV continues, with 66 stores now in various stages of shutdown and CEO Trevor Moore getting the boot.  Moore jumped aboard in September, right before the company declared bankruptcy.  Nearly 1,000 staffers have been ‘sacked,’ to use British parlance.



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