Good idea? we7 has just been purchased by British supermarket chain Tesco for 10.8 million pounds ($16.8 million), a move designed to broaden the existing music footprint (both physical and digital). More accurately, the deal is for a 91 percent share, with cofounders Peter Gabriel and Steve Purdham bankrolling the buyout. The we7 model has shifted around over the years, and most recently involves customized radio stations, a population of 3 million listeners, major label licensing, and apparently, near-profitability.
Songza is continuing to capitalize on a recent growth spurt. After soaring to top app rankings on the iPad and iPhone, Wall Street analysts latched onto the playlist-focused startup as the latest Pandora killer. That may be more imagined than real, though the company is also reporting heavy growth from its integration into Facebook's Timeline.
Poppycock? Pandora's playing in the big leagues, according Vice President of Mobile Advertising Sales Brian Colbert. The executive recently pointed to mobile ad revenues of roughly $100 million in 2011, second only to Google.
And another financial house of cards collapses. This time it belongs to R. Kelly, who apparently owes more than $5 million in back taxes to the IRS. The Chicago Sun-Times first reported the 'financial situation,' which follows the abrupt foreclosure of the singer's sprawling mansion.
Smule has just released an Android version of Magic Piano. This is currently the 'top iOS piano app,' for what that's worth.
But what about the future of music, in say, 20 years? There's continued research into transformative music creation, including efforts to codify the muscle memories enjoyed by virtuoso instrumentalists. Which means, a relative novice could crank out a Beethoven piano concerto with ease according to one researching scientist (who we'll be interviewing); more ahead.
This has been a bubbling possibility for about a decade, and now, 3 Doors Down is the latest taker. That band is selling USB wristbands of just-recorded live events, a concert mememto facilitated by Disclive Network. Let's see if/when this market shapes into something truly memorable...
There's some unrest among Live Nation shareholders, particularly around board member appointments and executive compensation. A recently-filed 8-K documents the concern, especially as shares of LYV slump sub-$9 amidst lofty compensation tranches.
It's complicated: Universal Music Group and EMI Music executives head to Capitol Hill next week to defend their proposed merger in front of skeptical Senators. Separately, consumer-focused groups Public Knowledge and the Consumer Federation of America have reiterated their opposition to the deal.
More app fun: this time, MusiXmatch has launched a lyrics-driven search engine for Spotify.