Friday, December 02, 2005
Icahn and his supporters – who together own 3% of Time Warner - plan to win a majority of the board seats through a proxy fight. Icahn has said that he believes that a divided Time Warner will function better and more efficiently. Icahn is reportedly speaking with the investment bank Lazard to develop restructuring strategies.
Shares of the company closed last night at $18.16 – having traded in the $15 to $20 range for the past two years.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Shares of Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) – manufacturers of the iPod – have however skyrocketed – from $9.50 in 2001 to $64.95 at close of business today. Apple shares reached an all time high this week after an analyst at Bear Stearns upped his earnings estimate for Apple based on the thriving demand for iPods and the fact that the holiday gift buying season is coming up around the bend.
EMI Group PLC, (EMIPY.PK) just announced that revenues are on an upward swing for the first time in five years due to an increase in the company’s legal downloads and the fact that the groups Coldplay and Gorillaz released profitable CDs this year. Sales for the six months ended September rose by 5.8% to $1.6 billion.
Friday, November 11, 2005
An announcement was also made by Lycos, to the effect that they would also be launching an online record label. It looks like the music industry is experiencing a shift in how music and musicians become popular and produce recordings. It’s about time!
Thursday, November 10, 2005
I asked Dawn to write down her first hand observations for our blog readers:
"Last night I attended the Rascal Flatts performance at GM Place in Vancouver and felt like I was a witness to a cultural shift. I am a 46 year old avid fan of country and rock music and attended concerts frequently throughout my teens and twenties. I now make a point of seeing a concert every now and then when I feel like I can handle the crowds. My last concert previous to Rascal Flats, was Bruce Springsteen's acoustic tour this fall. At his concert, I sat quietly with my peers listening to a legend sing out his life story. There were moments of complete silence as we soaked him in. It did not prepare me for last night's concert at all.
Despite the cheap cowboy hats, drunk girls and too many people, the musical performance was great. The phenomenon that made me stand back as an observer and pause, was that instead of an audience that I remember in my twenties holding up their lighters in the air, I saw thousands of cell phones with cameras being held up by fans.
I had no idea that every teenage girl and everyone under 30 had a cell phone with a camera. I have to say I had one in my purse too, but I don't know how to use the camera.
The wireless wave took on a whole new meaning for me last night as I saw cell phones waving rhythmically in the air to Rascal Flats, taking photo after photo."
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
According to the Hollywood Undead’s blurb on their MySpace page, “After 1 day of dropping their sound onto Myspace, their account exploded like TNT. The Hollywood Undead space grew in size in a matter of hours—starting out with an audience of 10 and blowing up into one that included several thousand users just in their first day of entry into the space. Thousands of adds per day on average. Tens of thousands of profile views. Close to 4000 DOWNLOADS PER DAY.” The band reached number one on the MySpace top bands chart after only 1 week, beating out bands like Nine Inch Nails, Coldplay, and System Of A Down.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Clear Channel (NYSE:CCU) recently reported that their third quarter profits were down by 21% to $205.5 million. Lower third quarter profits were stated to be the result of shorter radio ads – the company is focusing on 15 to 30 second ads - and CCU’s restructuring costs.
Canadian company, Corus Entertainment Inc (Toronto: CJR-NVB.TO) announced that their fourth quarter profits were down to $9.7 million (22 cents per diluted share) from $14 million (33 cents per share) at the same point last year due to new copyright costs and the integration of several of its radio stations. On the TSX, shares in Corus fell 50 cents, or 1.51 per cent, to $32.69 in late afternoon trading.
Activision, Inc. (NASDAQ: ATVI), worldwide developer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment and leisure products, announced on October 26 a four-for-three stock split. Activision posted net revenues of $1.4 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2005.
Wednesday, October 12, 2005
Wednesday, October 05, 2005
The increase in downloads neatly offsets declines in the retail sales of physical CDs and DVDs, which fell by 6.3%. The decline in physical sales was reported to be due to illegal downloading, CD burning, and lower retail prices for CDs and DVDs.
The increase in downloads is a result of faster broadband internet connections and more and better portable music players, including 3G mobile phones.
Apple’s iTunes accounted for 82% of the legal download market having sold more than 500 million single track downloads and 22 million iPod players. The recording industry is aggressively attacking illegal downloads, having pursued litigation against over 14,800 individuals in the US.
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
The industry's decline in physical CD sales has been bolstered by the increased popularity of digital music downloads, sales of which have more than tripled in the past year (to $790 million) which amounts to 6% of the industry's total sales of $13.2 billion.
Thursday, September 29, 2005
And for those of you who have unrequited Rock & Roll aspirations - check out www.RockAndRollDream.com - the classic rock themed digital recording facility whose goal is to help you, "Live Your Rock And Roll Dream".
Wednesday, September 07, 2005
Thursday, September 01, 2005
Toby Keith has had great success in his music career up to this point selling 25 million albums, with 10 going platinum, and 21 No. 1 singles. Keith has sourced help in running Show Dog Records in the form of former DreamWorks Nashville executive, Scott Borchetta, who will also be running his own label, Big Machine Records.
Monday, August 29, 2005
The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry provided a quantitative snapshot of the worldwide music industry in their August report. The report revealed that over 100,000 album titles were released in 2004. The UK had the highest per capita album sales with an average of 2.9 albums purchased annually by every man woman and child in the country. The US was reported to have the highest percentage of households with DVD players, at 94% of the population. Canada had the highest broadband uptake in North America, and Singapore placed first for the country with the highest number of CD players per household (390%). The US placed second in this category with 257%.
The growth of digital services reached a landmark as over 180 legitimate musical download services launching in 2004. The total number of legitimate services now totals over 300, with over 200 of those located in Europe. In the world of record companies, Vivendi Universal was the biggest with a worldwide market share of 25.5%, followed by Sony BMG with 21.5%, EMI at 13.4%, and Warner at 11.3%. Warner’s highly publicized IPO at the beginning of 2005 was overshadowed this past month by the release of the company’s third quarter results. Warner reported a net loss for the quarter of $179 million, or $1.41 per diluted share. This compares to a net loss in the ‘same time last year’ period of $91 million.
Also in August, FCC Chairman Kevin Martin began an investigation into allegations of ‘payola’ violations (the practice of bribing radio stations to air specific songs from major label catalogues – historically bribes have consisted of cash, drugs and prostitutes) between record companies and radio stations. Sony BMG, the second largest music conglomerate, recently made a $10 million settlement with the New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer for their alleged involvement in ‘payola’ violations. It has been reported that EMI Group, Warner Music Group, Universal Music Group, Clear Channel Radio, Cox Radio, Infinity Broadcasting, and Entercom have been subpoenaed in the industry wide investigation. It is expected that fines to each company found guilty of violations will follow the Sony BMG example and will also be based upon the company’s market share.
Thursday, August 11, 2005
Friday, July 22, 2005
According to a study by American market research firm, The NPD Group, which was released last month, U.S. residents downloaded 243 million songs from illegal sources and bought 26 million songs from online music stores. The reports stated that the main reasons for the decreasing growth of illegal downloads are fear of prosecution and the likelyhood of computers getting loaded up with spyware and viruses.
Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Munch Music Launches Classic Rock Themed Studio Targeting a Rapidly Growing Teen Fan Base and a Generation of Rock and Roll Dads
Delta, B.C., July 19th, 2005 - Munch Music, Inc. - www.MyMunchMusic.com and www.RockandRollDream.com. On July 15th Munch Music, a rock themed recording studio and music facility opened its doors in Delta, B.C., Canada, to rock and roll fans and performers aged from 13 - 54. Munch Music launched with a VIP/Media event attended by avid followers of White Rock based recording artists "White Noise". The successful event proved that music has no age barrier and that rock music is on a "roll", further evidenced by the fact that rock singers had a face and voice at G-8 meetings and through their efforts to change the face of poverty at the Live 8 events.
Before the White Noise performance, Mackenzie Snape, the recent South Delta Pop Idol competition winner, took to the Munch stage. Mackenzie was backed musically by her brother Patrick Snape and Munch Music’s founder and President: Taylor Van Zant.
White Noise followed with a powerful, rockin' set comprised of songs from their latest CD, “Listen”. The performance was very well received by the Munch crowd, who then had the opportunity to have copies of “Listen” autographed by the band. “Listen” will also be available for sale at Munch Music, as well as online through the website www.MyMunchMusic.com.. Munch owner, 16 year old Taylor Van Zant said, "This band is exactly the kind of music my friends and I love," as he smiled for the first time in many weeks, following weeks of stressful preparations for the opening launch. Click here to view White Noise’s site: www.ThisIsWhiteNoise.com
The opening weekend allowed residents of Tsawwassen to tour the Munch premises; make musical purchases; book studio recording time; sign up for guitar lessons; and a number of young musicians brought in their instruments leading to impromptu jam sessions on the Munch stage. A number of “Rock & Roll Dads and Moms” also toured the premises, and were excited to hear that Munch Music will feature special evening events for them to strut their musical riffage. The Rock & Roll Moms and Dads events will be in addition to regular Jam Nights which will be open to musicians of all ages.
The concept behind Munch Music is simple: “You have a Rock & Roll Dream and we provide the means for you to live that dream”. Life at Munch Music is never boring, and here you're never too old or too young to be a bona fide 'Jukebox Hero'! Munch Music provides the fulfillment of musical dreams through a state of the art digital recording studio, the opportunity to promote your new CD both in-store and online, and a staff of experienced lifelong musicians who are available to instruct and guide you through your musical journey. And to top it all off, we are able to offer our services and expertise at extremely affordable prices that should suit the budget of even the youngest new chart toppers.
The Munch Music website features an extensive list of music industry links from classic rock to copyrighting your own music for avid music fans. Click here for more details: www.MyMunchMusic.com/music_links.htm
About us: “Live Your Rock & Roll Dream” at Munch Music – CD recording, music lessons and live performance experience are now within the grasp of all musicians: www.MyMunchMusic.com/About_Us.htm. Check us out online at www.MyMunchMusic.com and www.RockandRollDream.com where you can view a complete description of our services, facilities, price list, menu and merchandise.
Brian Noer or Taylor Van Zant
Unit 11 - 1835 56th Street, V4L 2L8
Delta, BC - Canada
"The opening of our 150th store, in Greenville, is a landmark moment for Guitar Center and for our customers nationally," said Marty Albertson, CEO and Chairman of Guitar Center in a company press release. "Our success in reaching this milestone reflects how well our strategy of bringing the best technology and products to the widest number of people in cities throughout the U.S. has been received. The new store in Greenville, like all the Guitar Center stores, underscores our ongoing commitment to music and the people who love it."
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
Here’s the complete list:
1. Rolling Stones
2. Boston Red Sox
3. New York Yankees
4. Chicago Cubs
6. Paul McCartney
9. Kenny Chesney
10. Neil Diamond
Thursday, June 02, 2005
Monday, May 23, 2005
Wednesday, May 18, 2005
Monday, May 16, 2005
Friday, May 13, 2005
Thursday, May 12, 2005
Wednesday, May 11, 2005
Upon release of this news, RealNetworks share price dropped 21% and Napster went down 32%. Yahoo! shares on the other hand rose 14 cents. Of course all of these companies are trying to take on Apple’s iPod dominance – which I personally don’t get – iPods only play songs that have been either downloaded through iTunes or have been converted through the iTunes program. You can’t change the batteries on them yourself; you have to pay Apple a hundred bucks to do it for you. Through the Yahoo! Napster and RealNetworks song rental model, however, your portable music player has to be synchronized to the website once per month to ensure that your subscription fees have been paid. And if you want to burn those songs to a disc then an extra fee applies.
I may be a technological philistine, but I think I’ll continue to buy my music in a shop. One day I might even make the move from vinyl and eight track cassettes to some of those newfangled CD things.
Tuesday, May 10, 2005
Monday, May 09, 2005
Friday, May 06, 2005
In a Billboard interview, 'D' guitarist Kyle Gass expounded on the album's creation: "Gass says the D may try to recruit some of the stars that played on the duo's self-titled 2002 Epic debut for the upcoming sessions. "We'll try to beg Dave Grohl to come back," he says. "Best drummer ever. We liked all the old players. But let's face it. Everyone is dying to play with us, so we can just get on the phone. I'd love to go in and play all the instruments, but I just don't know how.""
In a Businessweek article, David Munns, chairman and chief executive of EMI Music North America, commented, “This sends a signal to music industry critics who claim we are technophobic".
Wednesday, May 04, 2005
The study continued to show that the majority of listeners (69% at work and 49% at home) do not turn the channel immediately when an advert comes on. Only one third of listeners in cars said that they turn the channel when an ad comes on. Interestingly, the study also looked at quantity versus quality, and found that younger listeners were more annoyed by the quantity of commercials while older listeners were also more likely to factor in the “annoyance factor” of just plain stupid advertising.
Monday, May 02, 2005
Friday, April 29, 2005
Be that as it may, Clear Channel is offering a special one time $3 dividend to current shareholders as well as a 50% increase in its annual dividend. At market close on Thursday Clear Channel shares were trading at $32 per share (the company’s 52 week high is $43.44 and during 2000 the pps was closer to $80). The stock dropped 25% in the last year due to a ‘radio advertising slump’, and profits for the first quarter were down 59%. The company also just came off of one of the weakest years in terms of concert attendance revenues, and has begun to revert branding of live music presentations back to local promoters. The popularity of subscription based digital radio services such as XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio, as well as the amazing growth of the iPod and downloadable music solutions can probably take credit for a lot of the company’s decrease in revenues.
Thursday, April 28, 2005
A new law (The Family Entertainment and Copyright Act) has just been put into effect stating that file swappers who share even a single pre-release (copies of films that have yet to be released theatrically) copy of a movie can be imprisoned for up to three years. The law was signed yesterday by President Bush after copies of “Star Wars: Episode Two”, “The Hulk”, and Tomb Raider” were shared online before their release to theatres.
Further to yesterday’s Podcasting blog – a new search engine has been unveiled, the first to cater specifically to Podcasting, called Podscope. The engine works by way of an audio and video ‘spider’ which crawls each Podcast using a ‘Speech to Text’ algorithm. Therefore when you search Podscope it trawls through its collection of transcribed texts and then allows you to play the entire broadcast, just the section which mentions your search terms, or to visit the site itself.
Wednesday, April 27, 2005
Podcasting is now officially the new fashion ‘black’ with thousands of new shows on just about any topic under the sun being published every day by regular people with internet access.
In other news, XM Satellite Radio (Nasdaq: XMSR) announced over 541,000 new subscribers (a 68% increase over last quarter’s additions) along with their first quarter 2005 financial results. The company’s revenues were a 140% increase over those of the fourth quarter 2004. Despite the increase however, the company’s first quarter 2005 revenue results still show a net loss of $119.9 million. The company’s new subscriber forecasts beat analysts' financial estimates, but shares were still down 2.7 percent during morning trading. XM said that they remain on track to reach 5.5 million subscribers by year-end.
Tuesday, April 26, 2005
MusicIndustryStocks.com recently reported that RealNetworks (RNWK) now has more than one million subscribers to its subscription music services. And how many teenagers and people on busses and trains do you see without an iPod?
You do the math.
Monday, April 25, 2005
For those of you wondering how my rock star stalking went this past weekend – the Steve Vai (ex guitarist for Frank Zappa, David Lee Roth, Whitesnake) show in Seattle was very impressive. As you can see from the photos below, I was fortunate enough to meet Steve. We chatted for a while, he signed every bit of paper I threw at him, and then as if I wasn’t happy enough about the whole ordeal, he let me play "Evo", his personal Ibanez Jem guitar. Yes I was in musician heaven. Afterwards during the show I had to wonder to myself if Steve’s amazing band was indeed human… If you get a chance, definitely catch the Vai band if they come to a town near you, I highly recommend it, if extreme musicianship is your bag.
My thanks to Steve Vai for humoring an old die hard fan for so long!
|Brian meets Steve Vai|
|Brian playing Steve's Ibanez Jem, "Evo"|
Thursday, April 21, 2005
Will wonders never cease? The originators of the world’s first digital modeling guitar, Line 6 have just released their Variax Workbench customizing software. In conjunction with a Variax guitar or bass it is now possible to design your dream axe on your computer and then to download it into your instrument. Musicians can choose between wood types, pickups, pickup positioning, body and neck type, volume and tone knob tweaking, and all through a USB connection between your computer and instrument. Wow. It all sounds very intriguing, but speaking as someone who loves the smell of sawdust and nitrocellulose lacquer, I won’t be putting away my jigsaw and router just yet. But I can imagine that as a tool for testing out different combinations of components before putting saw to wood, this tool will be invaluable. Click here for the full details.
The blogging on this column will be taking a short break as I’m off to Seattle on Friday for the Steve Vai show – armed with backstage tickets. Let the rock star stalking begin!
Wednesday, April 20, 2005
To read the full report click here:
Tuesday, April 19, 2005
MusicInvestorNews is written and maintained by Brian Noer on behalf of InvestorIdeas, and is published in tandem with news and information that is posted daily to the Web Portal at http://www.musicindustrystocks.com/. The MusicIndustryStocks.com portal (MIS) features information that is vital to those investors who choose to include Music and Entertainment related stocks within their portfolio (InvestorIdeas.com features a suite of Stock Market Investor resource and due diligence portals). MIS is updated daily with stock news and more general news and articles, as well as a comprehensive list of public companies in this sector, which provides savvy investors with a starting point for their due diligence and research efforts. MusicInvestorNews will highlight the important events of the day as it relates to investment in this industry.
I welcome comments and feedback on this column – please address your remarks to me at firstname.lastname@example.org