Right Now: Of the Lefsetz Variety, Motorhead Bourbon, Breaking Google, Yellow Porsches, Soundcloud, Shaming Ross, TuneSat…

Variety has just tapped Bob Lefsetz as a contributing columnist, specifically for its relaunched weekly edition (as well as its site).  Sounds like a smart move for Variety and a well-deserved stripe for Lefsetz, though longtime readers may have to wonder: will Variety be getting the good stuff?  Another question is whether Variety’s editors can handle the Lefsetz heat, though perhaps the years have slowly mellowed this oft-sage commentator.

Which brings us to another mellowing influence: bourbon.  But, Motorhead Bourbon?  Yes, according to a note just sent to Digital Music News.  That’s on top of existing Motorhead Wine, Motorhead Beer, and Motorhead Vodka.  “We have a range of intoxicants,” Lemmy observed.

Can Google be broken?  Let’s see: DMCA takedown notices just hit another all-time high, with compliance (and potentially erroneous requests) now a demanding, full-time job for Google.  Music industry groups like the RIAA and BPI are leading this charge, though their firepower is nothing compared to Hollywood’s arsenal…

There’s a lot not to miss about the old recording industry, including badly-dressed executives.  You know, the tinted glasses and tight leather… but how about yellow Porsches?  Turns out Universal Music Group chairman Lucian Grainge is pushing just that (specifically, a sunny Carrera 933) around the ‘streets’ of Brentwood, as unearthed in a Financial Times interview over lunch.  While not zooming around town, other fun Grainge activities include sipping coffee at Geoffrey’s Malibu on the PCH, and hobnobbing with Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.

Meanwhile, more chatter – and concern – surrounds the fast up-and-comer Soundcloud, which continues to soar but seems to be skipping requisite royalty payments (like, performance royalties).  Let’s see if/when this boils to a head…

And, the question remains (thank you): is Rick Ross benefiting from all the controversy surrounding “U.O.E.N.O.”?  Paul Porter of Rap Rehab has been leading the crusade against Ross and the pro-rape lyrical content of that piece, yet the song still seems to be getting substantial radio rotation.  That includes both the Hip-Hop Nation and Shade45 channels on Sirius, not to mention the just-added KJLH in Los Angeles.  Separately, the Parents Television Council (PTC) has now joined the chorus of protesters against the track and its message.

And yes, sometimes technology means more money for rights owners.  Which brings us to TuneSat, which is now trumpeting a proof of concept in Germany. That’s where GEMA has recently paid publisher Intervox Production Music Publishing GmbH based on TuneSat detections (a first for GEMA).  Basically, TuneSat scans television transmissions and detects the use of specific catalogs.

More ahead! Stay tuned.

5 Responses

  1. Old Record Guy

    The problem with Lefsetz, which nobody seems to realize or care about, is that he was never involved firsthand in digital music or the challenges it raised for the industry, and he opines/criticizes in blissful ignorance because of this. It’s a lot easier to rile up a mob than it is to roll up your sleeves and actually do something. His revisionist diatribes about how things evolved are taken as gospel, but nobody asks what the fuck he was doing during the entire time the digital music business was evolving. I went to every conference, had thousands of meetings from 1993 when things began, and I never saw Lefsetz once, anywhere.
    I guess with this hire, Variety will give hope to the millions of internet trolls looking to make an honest living with their unqualified and bitter rants.

    • Riteit

      If you just stroke the Lefsetz ego he’ll lay off you. That’s what Clive Davis did right before his book came out and what Live Nation did to get him off their backs.

      • Adam

        Let’s face it, Lefsetz is the music industry equivelent of a Necco Wafer.

  2. Visitor

    I’m pretty sure that Porsche is a “993” and not a “933”. The 993 is respected as perfection of form and the last 100% aircooled 911. The car was manfactured between 1995 and 1998 and can probably be had today for less than a brand new Honda Accord.

    • Paul Resnikoff

      Perhaps. The FT report said 933 but I’m not a car guy (I prefer to ride a bike).