Monday, August 29, 2011

Whose Convenience?

Why don't they just call it what it is?  It's a fee to purchase a ticket.  It's not convenient for me to spend an additional $2.95 per ticket.  WNYC's The Green Space is not the first venue to label it a "convenience charge". 

I just purchased two tickets to see the Jayhawks at the Green Space, which I'm excited about.  I haven't been there. I haven't see the Jayhawks in years.  I don't mind a $3 fee. It's definitely within reason, but I hate it being disguised.  Tell me what it is. 

That being said, there are still tickets available for the Sept 19th show and the "ticket fee" of $20 includes a glass of wine or beer:  very civil. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Two Great Songwriting Duos Lose A Partner

Both Nick Ashford and Jerry Leiber passed away.  Both were part of two of the most successful songwriting duos of all time.

Nick along his wife Valerie Simpson had their own hit with Solid (As A Rock), but penned the following for other singers:

Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing
Ain't No Mountain High Enough (seeing a pattern here?)
I'm Every Woman

Jerry Leiber was one half of Leiber Stoller.  A few of the acts they wrote for were Elvis Presley, The Coasters, Ben E King and The Searchers.

Songs included:
Jailhouse Rock
Hound Dog
Love Potion No. 9
Stand By Me
Is That All There Is?

Monday, August 15, 2011

News Radio Kills the Radio Star

One of the last music format radio stations in New York has gone news.  101.9 went FM News over the weekend. The new call letters are WEMP-FM.  The NY Times reports it's a breezier version of the news. 

Passion At The Work Place

When there is excitement and passion in the workplace, people want to be there participating.  Eileen Gittins recognizes this.  She founded Blurb.  The company that started out as a self-publishing startup for mainly artists making their own art books.

It has grown because
  1. They pay attention to details.
  2. Give the customer the quality they expect.
  3. Maybe this is the most important, as Gittins says "I just get energized by ideas and by people who are committed wholeheartedly to whatever it is they’re doing."  She says this goes for not only her employees but her customers as well.

I remember the days (that makes me sound old) when it was exciting to walk down the halls of a record company.  There was music everywhere. Posters hung on the walls.  Boxed vinyl was stacked all over the place creating a labyrinth in the offices.  Laminates hung on lanyards from bulletin boards.  People would accost me to listen to the latest  not-yet-released songs from Paul Westerberg.  It was fun, exciting and there was passion everywhere.

Fast forward to a story I remember hearing from Sony Music.  When Howard Stringer landed there in the late 90's, it was rumored that he asked Donnie Inner to turn down his music as it was too loud.  Can you imagine running a record company and being told to turn down the sole reason for the company:  music?  The corporate heads sucked out the passion.

Mashable has an interview with Gittens, which is worth the read.  She talks about growing her company.  The original business model:  Could we make money as a business on a book of one? Meaning if somebody made a book, and they only ever ordered one copy, could we have a viable business? And the reason why that was so important was that’s the opposite of traditional book publishing and creating apps. 

She's focused, smart and passionate.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Cherry Pie Singer Found Dead

Warrant's lead singer and writer of their hit Cherry Pie, Jani Lane was found dead in a Woodland Hills, California hotel room on Thursday.   According to the article in the New York Times, his manager said the death was alcohol related.  He was 47 years old. 

An interesting fact the article also pointed out:
Mr. Lane was born John Kennedy Oswald on Feb. 1, 1964 in Akron, Ohio. (His parents named him after President John F. Kennedy, undeterred by the fact that they shared the last name of the suspect in the assassination, Lee Harvey Oswald.)

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Use Their Music Without Permission, blink-182 Is Rewarding You

It's part of a promotion for AT and T.  What a fun idea.  To promote blink-182's first single in 8 years, they searched YouTube.  Any video that used blink-182's music without permission was given consideration.  They took clips from the selected videos and made one for the single, Up All Night. They are calling it the fan montage.  It's a lot of fun. 

Embrace your fans.  How exciting is it for a fan to see themselves in a "real" blink-182 video? 

Monday, August 01, 2011

Happy Birthday MTV

MTV turned 30 today and it's quite a different channel than it was in the 80's.