Music industry organisations provide perspectives

Business News Digital

By Chris Cooke | Published on Thursday 1 June 2023


Following the announcements earlier this week about the economics of streaming work being coordinated by the UK government, CMU has been speaking to representatives from some of the organisations that have been involved in those projects. Unsurprisingly, while everyone sees positives in that work, there are disagreements about what has been achieved so far and what should happen next.

The government instigated a number of projects in response to the inquiry into streaming undertaken by the Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Select Committee in the UK Parliament. MPs on that committee raised various issues with the way streaming currently works, especially from a music-maker perspective, and called for a “complete reset” of the digital music businesses.

There were three main government-led projects, overseen by the Intellectual Property Office, respectively putting the focus on data, transparency and music-maker remuneration.

Expert working groups were convened to discuss the issues around data and transparency, and to identify and discuss possible solutions. Meanwhile research was commissioned to consider copyright reforms that had been proposed by the select committee to address music-maker remuneration issues.

To help coordinate all of that a ‘music industry contact group’ was created mainly made up of the organisations that represent each stakeholder group within the music rights industry. So that includes organisations representing artists, musicians, songwriters, producers, managers, labels, publishers and the streaming services.

Those organisations have canvassed their respective members on the various issues that were raised by the select committee, and have fed back what they learned. They also nominated experts for the two working groups and have led the negotiations on the codes of practice on data and transparency that came out of those specific projects.

The big two announcements this week in relation to all this were that the code of practice around music metadata has now been agreed and signed, and that the government has agreed to convene another working group focused on music-maker remuneration.

On the metadata code, all the trade organisations we spoke to agree this is an important and positive step.

Currently when recordings are delivered to streaming services, it’s common for no data to be provided about the producers and session musicians who worked on the track. Songwriter names are now often included, but not always with complete accuracy. And the code that identifies the specific song contained in the recording – the ISWC – is rarely supplied.

This missing data means many music-makers go uncredited. Meanwhile on the songs side it can delay or even stop payment being made to the songwriter.

The metadata code sees everyone involved in the making, release, distribution and streaming of recorded music committing to raise their game when it comes to gathering and providing data. And pretty much everyone agrees that it is a step in the right direction. And everyone plans to provide training and support to their members to help them do the game raising.

In some cases that work is already underway. The Ivor’s Academy co-launched the Credits Due campaign in 2021 to educate the music community about the key categories of music metadata. And beyond education, the Music Publishers Association stresses that some of the work to deliver the code, such as ensuring ISWCs are issued sooner, is already underway.

Though some of the music-maker organisations stress that the metadata code is very much a starting point. For starters, key performance indicators to assess the extent to which data provision improves are still to be agreed, though that task is next on the agenda for the IPO.

But even once the KPIs are in place, more changes will be required in the future to fix all the problems, especially around songwriter payments.

The Music Managers Forum points to the ‘Song Royalties Manifesto’ it published last year which set out a much more ambitious and extensive plan. Though, the MMF does add, the first step towards achieving that grander plan involves the sorts of things set out in the code. So it is definitely a good first step.

It’s no secret that music-maker remuneration is the most divisive of the three areas of focus identified by the IPO. And in some parts of the industry, the mere convening of a working group to discuss that topic is seen as controversial.

For the music-maker organisations, remuneration is by far the biggest issue, even though the specific grievances and challenges are different for artists, songwriters and session musicians, and for artists releasing music today and those still earning from records releases years or decades ago.

The big question now is what the scope of the remuneration working group should be, and there are differences of opinion there too. Though – labels and publishers in particular – say that all and any discussions must be “evidence based”.

That’s because the labels and publishers aren’t convinced that every grievance raised by the music-makers around remuneration is justified. Or, at least, those grievances aren’t the result of the deals done between artists and labels, and songwriters and publishers.

And in some cases they’re right. Sometimes the issues are caused by the steaming services. Or the fact that an artist’s music doesn’t get that many streams, given success in streaming comes from millions rather than thousands of plays.

But, the music-maker groups would argue, while some grievances don’t stand up to scrutiny, plenty do. And the former should not be used to distract from the latter.

So, while there were some key developments in the economics of streaming work this week, there is plenty more to be done. And the trickiest conversations are still to be had.

You can read our interviews with representatives from each of the following organisations by clicking the links below…

Association Of Independent Music



Featured Artists Coalition

Ivor’s Academy

Musicians’ Union

Music Managers Forum

Music Publishers Association

READ MORE ABOUT: Economics Of Streaming Inquiry

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Music Executive Erica Grayson’s Moxieworld

New York, NY (Top40 Charts) Moxieworld Consulting, founded by esteemed music executive Erica Grayson, is revolutionizing the monetization of music intellectual property (IP) and content in today’s tumultuous industry landscape. Grayson’s expertise and innovative approach, influenced by the legendary Jimmy Iovine, have led to her success in reimagining how music drives emotional connections and tangible outcomes.
“[I]t’s not just a form of entertainment, it’s a force that shapes human behavior and drives meaningful connections.”
“Working with Jimmy opened my eyes to the true power of music – it’s not just a form of entertainment, it’s a force that shapes human behavior and drives meaningful connections,” said Erica Grayson, Founder of Moxieworld Consulting.

The music industry faces challenges, including declining record sales and the commoditization of music, as streaming platforms and changing consumer habits disrupt established models for creation and monetization. With a deep understanding of music culture and strategic partnerships, Grayson helps businesses and artists discover the power of music by reimagining their approach, making her the go-to problem solver for fresh perspectives and innovative strategies.

Grayson’s impressive collaborations include Doubleday & Cartwright, Apple, Tribeca Film Festival, and Sony Music Publishing Chairman & CEO, Big Jon, and Cathy Merienda, Senior Vice President, Visual and Media Rights. Her skillful blending of sound and narrative guides brands to transform their relationship with music culture, creating captivating atmospheres that build powerful emotional connections and measurable outcomes. Her exceptional storytelling abilities leave a memorable impact on audiences, while her track record of securing commitments from elusive artists showcases her as a true creative force. Notable achievements include:

Now, with the recent alignment of Moxieworld Consulting and Blackmaled Sound, in partnership with Sony Music Publishing, a groundbreaking venture with acclaimed director Malcolm D. Lee, Grayson’s visionary approach is set to reshape music and storytelling in film, TV, and scripted audio. This partnership follows the successful collaboration on Peacock’s highest-streamed miniseries to date, The Best Man: The Final Chapter, which earned an NAACP Image Award. Grayson will oversee music sync, podcasts, scripted audio, and captivating stories for film and TV aimed at impacting global culture.

At Moxieworld Consulting, Grayson helps clients navigate the challenges of the streaming era, building emotional connections and driving outcomes with innovative strategies for music IP and content monetization. With an unwavering dedication to pioneering a new era of music and storytelling, Grayson is leading the charge in creating a brighter, vibrant future for the music industry.

Grayson’s tireless dedication and innate understanding of collaboration and strategic alliances have led to her immense success, including an ASCAP Women in Music award and over 100 million records sold worldwide. Her impressive career includes laying the foundation for publishing deals at Sony Music Publishing, working alongside Jimmy Iovine as Senior Vice President of A&R at Interscope Records, and serving as Partner and President of MADE Management, where she expanded business in film and TV synchs, strategic partnerships, and overall business development. Grayson’s portfolio also boasts collaborations with high-profile clients such as NBCUniversal, American Idol, Universal Music Group, The Pussycat Dolls, Keyshia Cole, Mary J. Blige, and more.

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David Archuleta rises from the ashes on powerful

David Archuleta has been on quite the journey since he came out in 2021 and his new single ‘Up’, released today sees him making peace with himself.

Rising to fame on ‘American Idol’ in 2008 where he came second to David Cook, Archuleta went on to have a successful recording career. His self-titled debut album, released in 2008, was certified Gold and it spawned the Billboard Hot 100 number 2 hit ‘Crush’. Subsequent releases didn’t achieve the same commercial success but Archuleta has built himself a solid fanbase as he’s kept releasing music.

Archuleta’s coming out in 2021 set him on a difficult path where he had to balance his sexuality with his religious beliefs after being brought up as a Mormon. In 2022 the singer-songwriter made the decision to step away from religion, something that was difficult for him but he realised that trying to reconcile what his religion was teaching him and how he felt in regards to his sexuality weren’t compatible.

On ‘Up’, co-written by Archuleta with Jeremy Thurber and Taylor Sparks, Archuleta deals with hitting rock bottom and rising from the ashes to build himself up stronger than he was before. On his official website he talks about the track saying:

“This song is about hitting what we feel is rock bottom in our lives and like there’s nowhere to go. You feel hopeless. The only thing to do from the bottom is get yourself off the ground and move UP. It’s a song about finding the strength you didn’t know you had in you. And replacing any fear and hate with love. Especially self love.”

Driven by an acoustic guitar, the song finds Archuleta being incredibly honest as he sings about feeling like he wanted to give up as he battled with his internal conflict. As he leads into the chorus, things take a positive turn as he defiantly vows to push on and rise out of this difficult time. The lyrics are powerful and I’m sure they’ll be helpful to those who follow Archuleta and are themselves struggling with their sexuality.

‘Up’ arrives following Archuleta’s recent stint on ‘The Masked Singer’ in the US where he came second to Bishop Briggs. On the basis of this song, it could very well be time for Archuleta to return to the charts and it’s time he’s celebrated for the remarkable artist that he is.

‘Up’ is available to stream and download now.

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Queen make music history with billion dollar deal

Queen is set to make music history with the sale of their extensive music catalogue for one billion dollars.

Yes, you read that right – One BILLION USD!

The iconic rock band is rumoured to be in negotiations with the Universal Music Group who are keen on acquiring the rights.

WATCH NOW: Rami Malek’s Bohemian Rhapsody Workout. Article continues after video. 

Currently, Queen’s catalogue is owned by Disney Music Group which purchased the rights for a reported $10 million in 1991. 

Speaking with CNN, a source close to the acquisition revealed that the discussions were “well underway” and the deal would be finalised “within one month.” 

If the sale goes through, and the Universal Music Group does indeed spend one billion dollars, it will be the biggest single artist music catalogue sale in history. 



It will include everything from their self-titled debut album in 1973 to their last album to feature the vocals of Freddie Mercury in 1995 titled Made in Heaven. 

The billion-dollar sale price will also almost double the amount Bruce Springsteen sold his music and publishing catalogs to Sony Music Group in late 2021 for $550 million USD. 

Whilst the remaining two original band members will not be able to enjoy the insurmountable payday from the sale of the rights to their music catalog or any future royalties, they are still extremely wealthy.



Guitarist and vocalist Brian May has an estimated net worth of $210 million USD whilst drummer Roger Taylor has an estimated $200 million USD to his name. 

Despite retiring in 1997, bass guitarist John Deacon is estimated to be worth an impressive $170 million USD. 

At the time of his death in 1991 at the tender age of 45, lead singer Freddie Mercury was estimated to be worth $50 million USD.

Brian, Roger, and John (as well as the Freddie Mercury estate) also own equal shares in Queen Productions Ltd, which still owns the rights (and thus reaps the royalties) to Queen’s music catalog outside the United States of America and Canada.

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The Greatest Arena Run Of All Time To Come To An

New York, NY (Top40 Charts) Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. (“MSG Entertainment”) and legendary musician and MSG franchise Billy Joel announced today that after ten extraordinary years, Joel’s historic franchise run at The Garden will conclude with his 150th lifetime show at the venue in July 2024. With this also comes the announcement that the first of the final ten shows in his record-breaking residency at The World’s Most Famous Arena will take place on October 20, 2023.

“I’m kind of flabbergasted that it lasted as long as it did. My team tells me that we could continue to sell tickets, but ten years, 150 shows – all right already!” said Billy Joel. “I do remember the first time we played Madison Square Garden, it was the pinnacle of my career. I thought, ‘My God, I’m headlining Madison Square Garden.’ Everybody in the world knows when you play The Garden, it’s not just New York. To our audience, I want to thank them for coming to our shows for this long. It’s hard to end, even at 150 lifetime shows. I just want to thank everyone for the wonderful thing that’s happened here.”

“Billy Joel’s franchise run has made history – not only for Madison Square Garden, but also for the music industry overall,” said James L. Dolan, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, MSG Entertainment. “150 sold out lifetime shows is a remarkable achievement, and speaks to Billy’s extraordinary talent, beloved catalog, and dedicated fanbase. Billy always has a home here at MSG even though the residency is coming to an end with his 150th lifetime performance.”

“There’s only one thing that’s more New York than Billy Joel – and that’s a Billy Joel concert at MSG,” said New York City Mayor Eric Adams. “For more than 50 years, Billy’s music has defined our city and brought us together. On behalf of 8.5 million New Yorkers, congratulations, Billy, on a historic run of sold-out shows at MSG, and thank you for a lifetime of bringing joy to us all.”

Joel’s history with Madison Square Garden began with his first performance at The World’s Most Famous Arena on December 14, 1978. In 2006, with 12 consecutive performances, Joel set the record for “most consecutive performances by any artist.” To commemorate the historic moment, a banner stating “Joel – 12” was raised to The Garden rafters, making him the first entertainer in the venue’s history to accomplish this feat.

In December 2013, Billy Joel was named Madison Square Garden’s first-ever music franchise, joining the ranks of the storied venue’s other original franchises – the New York Knicks and New York Rangers. The record-breaking residency began in January 2014 with Joel playing one show every month at The Garden for, as Joel said at the time, “as long as the demand continues.” In January 2015, Joel broke his own record of the “most consecutive performances by any artist” with the 13th show of the residency and a new banner was raised to The Garden’s rafters. In July 2015, with his 65th lifetime show, Joel broke another record for the “most lifetime performances by any artist,” for which another banner was raised. Both of Joel’s banners continue to hang at The Garden and are replaced each month with each performance.

In July 2018, to commemorate his 100th lifetime performance at the venue, then Governor Andrew M. Cuomo officially proclaimed July 18, 2018 “Billy Joel Day” in the State of New York in honor of Joel’s extraordinary history of leadership and contributions to the music industry and New York State. As part of the celebration, Joel’s piano was put on display outside of Chase Square at the Seventh Avenue entrance to The Garden. The 100th lifetime performance was one for the ages – with Bruce Springsteen joining Joel on stage to celebrate the milestone. A multitude of other incredible surprise guests have joined him on stage throughout the course of the ten-year run including Miley Cyrus, Jimmy Fallon, John Fogerty, Billy Gibbons, Brian Johnson, John Mayer, John Mellencamp, Olivia Rodrigo, Paul Simon, and more. And, throughout the course of his legendary run, more than 1.6 million tickets have been sold to fans from all 50 states and more than 120 countries – further establishing Joel’s status as a global icon.

In addition to his ongoing residency run, Joel has also performed alongside other music greats at two of Madison Square Garden’s most extraordinary benefit concerts – “12-12-12, The Concert For Sandy Relief,” which raised awareness and money for those affected by Hurricane Sandy, and “The Concert for New York City,” which was held to help aid 9/11 victims and heroes.

Billy Joel is one of the world’s most iconic musicians, having received The Kennedy Center Honors, one of the United States’ top cultural awards, in December 2013. He is also the recipient of six GRAMMY® Awards, including the prestigious Grammy Legend Award. Joel has been inducted into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and has received numerous industry awards including a TONY AWARD for “Movin’ Out,” a Broadway musical based on Joel’s music. For his accomplishments as a musician and as a humanitarian, Joel was honored as the 2002 MusiCares Person Of The Year by the MusiCares Foundation and the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences.

In November 2014, Billy Joel received both The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song which honors living musical artists’ lifetime achievement in promoting the genre of song as a vehicle of cultural understanding; entertaining and informing audiences; and inspiring new generations, and the once-in-a-century ASCAP Centennial Award, which is presented to American music icons in recognition of their incomparable accomplishments in their respective music genres and beyond. In 2016, the Library of Congress selected “Piano Man” for preservation in the National Recording Registry for its “cultural, historic, and artistic significance.”

The first of the final ten shows in Joel’s MSG franchise run will take place on October 20, 2023. Citi cardmembers will have first access to presale tickets for the October 20 show from Monday, June 5 at 10:00AM (ET) through Thursday, June 8 at 10:00PM (ET) via Verizon will also offer an exclusive presale for the October show through the customer loyalty program Verizon Up. Members will have exclusive access to purchase presale tickets from Tuesday, June 6 at 10:00AM (ET) through Thursday, June 8 at 10:00PM (ET). For more details and to sign up for Verizon Up, visit Tickets will be available for purchase by the general public beginning at 10:00AM (ET) on Friday, June 9 via Due to congestion during the on-sale, it can be difficult to purchase tickets right away. Please continue to check Ticketmaster as tickets will be available throughout the day. Tickets will also be available at the Madison Square Garden box office on Saturday, June 10.

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Charles of Play, Davido, Kunle Afolayan announced

Charles Okpaleke, Davido, and Kunle Afolayan have been nominated by the Nigerian government, along with 336 others, to receive national recognition for their outstanding contributions to the fields of drama and music. The honours aim to recognise Nigerians who have made significant contributions for the benefit of the nation. The recipients of this prestigious recognition were announced by the federal government on May 28.

David Adedeji Adeleke OON, popularly known as Davido, is a Nigerian Afrobeats icon adored by fans worldwide. Since his entrance into the music industry, he has achieved remarkable milestones, such as being the first solo African artist to sell out the London O2 Arena and leading the production of the 2022 FIFA World Cup soundtrack, ‘Hayya Hayya’. His songs have amassed over two billion streams, solidifying his status as a musical powerhouse.

Charles Okpaleke OON, also known as Charles of Play, is a Nigerian film producer renowned for his talent in transforming Nigerian classics into award-winning films. His debut film, ‘Living in Bondage: Breaking Free’, received seven awards at the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards in 2020. Another film, Glamour Girls, is the most-viewed Nigerian film on Netflix.

Furthermore, his game, ‘Aki and Pawpaw: Epic Run’, inspired by the popular 2002 film ‘Aki and Pawpaw’, became Nigeria’s first game to reach the number one ranking in the world after accumulating 100,000 downloads on iOS and Playstore in under 30 hours. Charles Okpaleke is also the co-founder of Play Network Africa.

Kunle Afolayan OON, a Nigerian film producer, actor, and director, embarked on his Nollywood journey in 1999 as an actor in the film ‘Saworoide’. However, he gained widespread recognition for his directorial debut, ‘Irapada’,” which won the Africa Movie Academy Award for ‘Best Film in an African Language’. His recent work, ‘Aníkúlápó’, became the most-watched non-English Netflix original film just 11 days after its release.

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UK government forms creator ‘remuneration working

In the UK, the world’s third-largest recorded music market, the government has established what it calls a working group on creator remuneration and in the same week has unveiled an industry agreement on music streaming metadata.

These initiatives aim to promote fair pay for musicians and enhance the accuracy and transparency of metadata in the streaming industry.

According to the Government, the new group will be composed of “representatives and experts” from across the music sector and will “explore and develop industry-led actions that support fair remuneration for existing and future music creators as part of a successful and globally competitive music industry”.

The recommendation to form the group, which was accepted by the government in March, was put forward by the Culture, Media & Sport Committee in January. The Committee’s report in January was a follow-up to its original 2021 report on the Economics of music streaming.

Sir John Whittingdale, Minister of State at the UK’s Department for Culture, Media & Sport, disclosed the plan to build a working group in a May 23 letter addressed to Dame Caroline Dinenage, Chair of the Culture Media and Sports Committee.

Whittingdale acknowledged that royalty rates in new recording contracts have increased, with average rates in new contracts now around 25%.

“Additionally, new contracts are increasingly moving away from life-of-copyright durations, in many cases allowing creators to regain control of their music after a shorter period. And these improvements come alongside increasing numbers of artists reaching substantial numbers of streams and being able to make a living from recorded music,” Whittingdale wrote.

However, he acknowledged that many creators still have concerns about how they are paid for streaming.

“While terms in new contracts are increasingly creator-friendly, those benefits are often not extended to creators still signed to older contracts, many of whom are paid at substantially lower royalty rates than their modern counterparts. Additionally, session musicians feel that they are not sharing equitably in the successes of the streaming sector.”

“The creation of a working group we have been calling for is a welcome step towards addressing the frustrations of musicians and songwriters whose pay falls far short of a fair level given their central role in the success of the music streaming industry.”

Dame Caroline Dinenage, British MP

In response, Dinenage on Tuesday (May 30) said: “The creation of a working group we have been calling for is a welcome step towards addressing the frustrations of musicians and songwriters whose pay falls far short of a fair level given their central role in the success of the music streaming industry.”

Didier Martin, the CEO of Outhere Music, in a 2021 op/ed, said the music streaming industry must adopt a “transparent, logical and fair system of revenue” in order to increase the number of subscribers.

Currently, Spotify, the world’s most dominant streaming platform, has around 210 million global paying subscribers after adding another 5 million net Premium subscribers in the first quarter.

The decision to create the group follows the request from campaigners who believed that the original working groups on metadata and contract transparency did not adequately address the matter of musicians’ payment in streaming platforms.

“The government must now make sure the group is more than a talking shop and leads to concrete change so the talented creators and performers we have in this country are properly rewarded for their creativity. The Committee will be keeping a close eye on progress and also looking more widely at artist and creator remuneration to ensure everyone who works in our creative industries can share in its successes,” added Dinenage.

In addition to the working group, the UK government has introduced an industry agreement on music streaming metadata on Wednesday (May 31).

Metadata plays a crucial role in accurately crediting and compensating music creators. The voluntary agreement sets out commitments from stakeholders across the UK music streaming industry to progressively improve metadata in new recordings.

This includes ensuring consistent and comprehensive information about songwriters, performers, and rights owners associated with each track. By enhancing the quality and reliability of metadata, the agreement aims to enable more accurate and timely payments to music creators from streaming platforms.

The agreement also calls for the establishment and support of expert working groups focused on education and technical solutions to further improve metadata over a two-year period.

This collaborative effort between industry experts and the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) is expected to enhance the overall quality of metadata and contribute to a more efficient and fair music ecosystem.

Commenting on the metadata agreement, Whittingdale said: “The UK is a hotbed for world-beating musical talent but as technology advances we need our thriving music industry to continue to offer viable career opportunities.”

“This landmark agreement on streaming metadata is a step towards ensuring UK musicians in the digital age are fairly credited and compensated for their contributions and creativity. Alongside the IPO I’m pleased to be bringing the industry together so we can explore wider issues around music creator remuneration more generally.”

Viscount Camrose, Minister for AI and Intellectual Property, added: “Good quality metadata benefits everyone who creates and enjoys music. The agreement on metadata is a positive commitment by the music industry to improve the quality of metadata in the UK. I am very pleased to see the wide range of organizations which are signatories to the agreement, and I look forward to seeing the further progress that industry makes on metadata over the next two years.”

“The UK is a hotbed for world-beating musical talent but as technology advances we need our thriving music industry to continue to offer viable career opportunities.”

Sir John Whittingdale, British MP

The introduction of the working group and the industry agreement on metadata follows a parliamentary inquiry into the economics of music streaming and the Culture, Media & Sport Committee’s recommendations.

In October 2020, the industry called for a “complete reset” of streaming in response to issues that professional musicians and independent companies face in the music streaming sector.

The inquiry highlighted the urgent need for fair pay and better working conditions.

Tom Gray, the chair of the Ivors Academy and founder of the Broken Record campaign, sees the development as “an important step down the road.”

Commenting on the formation of the remuneration working group, Sophie Jones, Interim CEO of record label body BPI, which represents major and independent labels in the UK, said: “We are concerned the environment being fostered in the UK will disincentivise investment in our creative ecosystem at a time when labels are fighting hard to grow exports and protect the rights of artists in the era of AI.

“Furthermore, this new effort seems at odds with the Government’s ambition to grow the UK’s world leading creative industries by an extra £50bn by 2030.  Over the past three years our sector has been subjected to multiple inquiries and investigations, culminating in a CMA market study that found competition is working effectively and delivering good and improving outcomes for consumers and creators across the sector.

“Throughout that process the BPI and its members engaged positively and constructively, resulting in a raft of initiatives to improve transparency and the flow of royalty payments to artists. Numerous studies have demonstrated that streaming has benefited consumers and artists alike, with record labels paying more to artists than ever before.”

The UK Council of Music Makers (CMM) umbrella body representing UK music creators and performers, and consisting of the Ivors Academy, FAC, MMF, MPG and the MU, also issued a statement in response to the news.

“Music-maker remuneration is the single biggest issue in streaming,” reads the CMM statement. Which is why we have been calling for a working group to be convened to allow the music community to come together to discuss the different ways that we can address these challenges, including the copyright reforms that have been proposed and other possible solutions”.

Added the statement from the CMM: “We greatly appreciate the government’s positive response to this request and look forward to now getting to work. We will be publishing a new white paper later this week setting out the different elements of the music-maker remuneration debate, building on the five fundamental objectives for streaming reform that we outlined earlier this year”.

“We’d also like to again thank the Culture, Media & Sport Select Committee, whose streaming inquiry and ongoing diligence has ensured that various issues faced by music-makers are now being addressed. The working groups on data and transparency, which have been expertly led by the Intellectual Property Office, are set to result in a number of positive changes which, although small steps, are nevertheless important steps towards delivering a transparent, dynamic and equitable streaming business. We hope similar things can now be achieved around remuneration”.

Both organizations also responded to the news about the metadata agreement.

“The BPI and our members are pleased to have worked with colleagues across the industry on this new metadata agreement and the progress it represents,” said Sophie Jones, BPI CSO and Interim CEO.

Jones added: “It sets a clear expectation of good practice within music streaming and we hope to see some immediate improvements as a result in terms of the speed and accuracy of songwriter payments.  Along with further updates on transparency to come, this work builds on positive steps taken by the industry itself, including policies to set aside pre-2000 unrecouped advances which means more legacy artists can now receive royalties from streaming.”

Meanwhile, an announcement from the CMM said: “The UK Council Of Music Makers (CMM), the umbrella body consisting of the Ivors Academy, the FAC, MMF, MPG and the MU, has welcomed today’s announcement that a voluntary pan-industry code on metadata has been agreed”.

“The metadata code is a crucial first step to ensure that the entire UK music industry comes together to set new standards and processes on how vital song, composition and recording data is collated, ingested and distributed – ensuring that songwriters, composers, artists, musicians and producers are paid with greater accuracy and efficiency.”

“Both work streams will continue to be led by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) alongside a separate working group on transparency.

“By addressing these three fundamental and interconnected areas – metadata, transparency and remuneration – and by working collegiately and on a pan-industry basis, the CMM remains positive that the UK industry can accelerate towards the five foundational changes we set out in March 2023 to deliver a new “artist-and-creator-centric” future.

“A significant amount of work has already gone into these IPO-led projects, not least from the IPO itself – however, much more still needs to be done.

“This week’s announcements constitute some important steps in the right direction – but they are small steps on a longer journey. We encourage everyone in the music industry to join the CMM in committing to continue that journey until we reach our destination.”

Music Business Worldwide

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Darrell Scott | Creative Loafing

#3 Darrell Scott Reduced

Photo credit:

GREAT SCOTT: Veteran string man Darrell Scott dips into his deep catalog June 2.

CL Critic Hal Horowitz Recommends: This frequent Eddie’s visitor never fails to awe audiences with his instrumental abilities and affable between song patter. Many might know him as a hired hand to dozens of Americana artists, or, remember his work with Robert Plant in the Band of Joy. His 2020 collection of Hank Williams covers is another career highlight. But the fact that he has released two live sets in the past six years shows how potent he is on stage. — HH

From the venue:

Darrell Scott

Multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Darrell Scott mines and cultivates the everyday moment, taking the rote, menial, mundane, and allowing it to be surreal, ever poignant, and candidly honest, lilting, blooming, and resonating. The words he fosters allow us to make sense of the world, what is at stake here, and our place in it. And ultimately, Darrell knows the sole truth of life is that love is all that matters, that we don’t always get it right, but that’s the instinctive and requisite circuitous allure of things, why we forever chase it, and why it is held sacred.

Darrell Scott comes from a musical family with a father who had him smitten with guitars by the age of 4, alongside a brother who played Jerry Reed style as well. From there, things only ramped up with literature and poetry endeavors while a student at Tufts University, along with playing his way through life. This would never change.

After recently touring with Robert Plant and the Zac Brown Band (2 years with each), and producing albums for Malcolm Holcomb and Guy Clark and being named “songwriter of the year” for both ASCAP and NSAI, these days find the four time Grammy nominee roaming his Tennessee wilderness acreage hiking along the small river, creating delicious meals with food raised on his property and playing music. He often leads songwriting workshops to help people tell their own truths with their stories, and is as busy as always writing, producing, performing, and just plain fully immersing himself in life.

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IFPI Takes Successful Action Against Bulgarian

IFPI torrent sites bulgaria blocked Photo Credit: Neven Myst

Major labels are celebrating a court order blocking BitTorrent trackers in Bulgaria. Here’s the latest.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) represents the recorded music industry worldwide, alongside the Bulgarian Association of Music Producers (BAMP) have managed a successful blocking action against BitTorrent trackers in the country.

The ruling was handed down by the Sofia City Court on May 31, 2023 and requires three ISPs in Bulgaria to block access to the BitTorrent site The Pirate Bay, local site Zamunda, and all subsequent mirrors of these torrenting sites. The case was coordinated by IFPI and filed by BAMP on behalf of its members and three member record companies of IFPI—Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group.

Bulgaria joins 20 countries around the world who have blocking orders in place for The Pirate Bay, 13 of those countries are in the EU. Zamunda is a local BitTorrent site and is not blocked in any other countries aside from Bulgaria, which contributes 80% of traffic to the site.

“We welcome this decision and the impact it will have on limiting illegal access to music,” says Frances Moore, Chief Executive of IFPI. “Copyright infringement of any sort causes serious harm to local music ecosystems and directs money away from those creating and investing in music.”

“We welcome the Sofia City Court’s decision which will strengthen the recorded music industry’s fight against online music piracy,” adds Petya Totcharova, Executive Director of BAMP. “It is the first time a website blocking order has been granted in Bulgaria and we consider this precedent an important step in the right direction.”

IFPI is the voice of the recording industry worldwide and represents over 8,000 record company members across the globe. The organization looks to promote the value of recorded music, campaign for the rights of record producers, and expand the commercial uses of recorded music around the globe.

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UK mechanical society MCPS’s member distributions

The UK’s Mechanical-Copyright Protection Society (MCPS) reached GBP £188.4 million (USD $232.3m) in member distributions in 2022, the highest since 2007.

MCPS collects royalties for over 34,000 publishers, songwriters, and composers when their music is copied or reproduced.

The figure was up by £6.7 million versus 2021 and followed a period of revenue decline.

Elsewhere in the UK,  which is the world’s third largest recorded music market, distributions made by UK music licensing company PPL reached £244.9 million in 2022, up 7.1% year over year. Its revenue rose 7.8% YoY to an all-time high of £272.6 million.

Meanwhile, MCPS attributed its continued recovery to the rise in popularity of streaming services such as Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon Music and robust distributions from international receipts.

The society said it has also capitalized on the resurgence of physical music products, with vinyl being a notable highlight.

In 2022, MCPS’s membership grew by 7.5%, or by 2,284 new members. It came as the society slashed its commission rates since August 2022 by 10% for all members.

MCPS, unlike many other performing rights organizations (PROs) and collective management organizations (CMOs) worldwide, has traditionally operated on a fixed commission basis. 

But after conducting an evaluation of its business performance, including consistent year-on-year growth in member distributions over the past three years and forecasting commission earnings for the upcoming years, the MCPS board last year made a decision to reduce the organization’s commission rate structure.

The 2022 distribution also included the payment of all excess commissions generated by MCPS totaling £7.2 million

“MCPS is committed to driving up value, efficiency and leaving nothing on the table due to publishers, songwriters and composers,” said MCPS CEO Paul Clements.

“Despite facing recent challenges such as the global pandemic, the united MCPS Board and management team have worked tirelessly for our members. As our centenary approaches, we reflect on our achievements and are determined to press hard for further positive innovations for our members.”

Jackie Alway OBE, MCPS

“We pride ourselves on optimizing our service through effective and innovative strategies, protecting mechanical rights and delivering maximum return for our members. We are very excited about celebrating our centenary next year in 2024 but will of course continue to primarily focus our attentions on increasing member distributions further, and at the most cost-effective rates.”

The organization, owned by the Music Publishers Association, will celebrate its second century in 2024. MCPS said it “remains steadfast in preserving its heritage as the mechanical collection society of choice for the music publishing and creator communities.”

“Despite facing recent challenges such as the global pandemic, the united MCPS Board and management team have worked tirelessly for our members. As our centenary approaches, we reflect on our achievements and are determined to press hard for further positive innovations for our members,” MCPS Chair Jackie Alway OBE said.

In 2017, MCPS signed a long-term agreement with PRS For Music after previously exiting its alliance with PRS. Under their service agreement, PRS provides rights management and administrative services to MCPS.

Music Business Worldwide

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