Artists can go deep into their music on Pandora with a whole new section for analytics on the creator platform AMP.
Pandora’s AMP dashboard gives artist’s a comprehensive look at how their music fits into the streaming service and offers unique marketing opportunities. With an enhanced new Insights tab artists will be able to go even deeper into their performance on Pandora.
The old Activity Feed has been integrated into the new Insights section, showing alerts on AMP campaigns and upcoming gigs. The first thing users will notice is the new Insights section offers three different spotlights on your music and how it’s doing at the top of the page.
These metrics cover Lifetime Streams, Lifetime Artist Station Adds, and Monthly Listeners to provide all the info artists need to engage with their audiences more and expand their fan-bases.
Scrolling down presents visualisations that display the Streams, Artist Station Adds and Thumbs in visual graphs that are simple to read and digest. Artists can adjust the dates to see detailed analytics for any specific time-frame of their choice.
Finally, the new Insights offer a map of the US so that artists can see exactly where their biggest fan-bases lie and how their popularity is spread across the country. It will show where listeners have been streaming artists’ music, added their artist stations, and thumbed up their songs.
The final feature showing fan locations is an incredibly powerful tool for artists and labels. It helps to advise strategies in launching promotion and is especially useful for arranging tours and gigs in the places where the most fans are.
View your Insights tab now by checking out your AMP dashboard. Wish you could dive into even more Pandora data? Log in or sign up for Next Big Sound to see how your tracks are performing, get notified when your music gets added to a playlist or station by Pandora’s curation programming team, and much more.
SoundCloud Go+ had dropped in Austria streaming their massive library of music from the smallest independents to major label artists with no ads or limits.
SoundCloud are making their 20+ million track library available on Go+ in Austria. The subscription service from SoundCloud offers unlimited high quality music streaming with no adverts, an extended library of major label music, and offline downloads of music for your devices.
SoundCloud is a unique music streaming platform because it is independent and free to upload. With an open platform based around community and the creators as well as the listeners SoundCloud boasts a library bigger than other streaming services.
This year SoundCloud have made a big push with DJ software. They’ve teamed up with Pioneer DJ, Traktor DJ, DEX 3, Virtual DJ and Serato DJ to make their entire track library available to stream and mix on these apps for Go+ subscribers.
SoundCloud Pro Unlimited subscribers can sign up to SoundCloud Go+ for 50% off the price. New subscribers can sign up for a free 30-day trial.
PUSH.FM is the new promotional platform from RouteNote that offers unique ways to share and spread your music around the world.
This year we launched PUSH.FM to join artist on the next step of their journey – getting their music in front of old fans and new listeners and being heard. We’ve now launched PUSH.FM Premium to offer artists and labels unlimited campaigns with their fan links and pre-saves
With trackable campaigns and unique promotional opportunities, PUSH.FM provides the next path for artists once their music is live. Because your music needs more than just to be available to be a success, it needs a push to get in front of the people who matter.
You want to build hype for your music before it officially comes out. With a Pre-Save campaign you can send your fans to Spotify, Deezer, and Apple Music to save your new release into their library ready for the big day.
So the people who love your music are ready to listen the moment your music drops.
When it comes to streaming music, listeners have many options for where to go. This can make it hard when you’re sharing your music, because which link do you choose to share?
When you create a Fan Links page with PUSH.FM we compile as many links to different streaming services and music stores as we can onto one, sexy looking page.
Every campaign you launch is completely track-able and you can follow how it’s performing with real-time, in-depth analytics showing you exactly what your music doing.
I Want To Believe that X-Files is alive. I Want To Believe that punk’s not dead. In one phenomenal live session F. Emasculata will have you believing in both again.
F. Emasculata came through the Parlour doors just to blow them off in spectacular, spooky style. A band like no other, they combine a face-meltingly powerful sound with extra-terrestrial vibes and X-Files themed songs.
Donning their FBI badges, F. Emasculata reported to the studio to root out any supernatural presences and blast them away with distorted heavy riffs, lightning fast drums and astonishingly brutal vocals. Do not miss this RouteNote Session.
Find each track from F. Emasculata’s RouteNote Session on all major streaming services and download stores.
How can we protect ourselves in a transforming industry, as art is becoming more and more independent? The CASE Act is part of a new and changing world for small and independent creators.
A new world of art and creation has presented itself in recent years and opened up the doors to creatives of all shapes and sizes. Now that we can carve out our own destinies without relying on large companies or big money it’s more important than ever we know to protect and cover ourselves.
I spoke to Jessica Sobhraj, the CEO of a company that is helping small creators to legally protect their creations with as little expense and hassle as possible. We spoke on what they’re doing for creators at her company Cosynd and the potentially revolutionary CASE Act which they’re helping to propose to the US government.
At Cosynd they are making the process of creating agreements and registering copyrights simple and accessible for people without the access to expensive resources or insider knowledge of how to best cover themselves.
“I came from the sync licensing world,” Jessica told me. “So on a daily basis my job would be clearing rights for film and TV and talking to all these artists about what their split sheet situation was. And many of them didn’t have one.”
For those who don’t know, Split Sheets are an agreement between collaborators clarifying their contributions. It ensures that their percentages and any ownership are down in writing.
It’s commonplace in the industry but with the thriving emergence of small creators, thanks in large part to the internet; many people who aren’t always aware of steps they can/should take or who think that it’s beyond their assets let it slide by. But an artist’s popularity, access to resources, or funds shouldn’t dictate whether they take the important steps to protecting their work.
“The reason many of them didn’t have [split sheets] was because they thought it was too expensive, that you needed an attorney to create a one page document that you and I could create on the back of a pizza box…
“I had been in the industry for 10 years at that point and I probably said the cheesiest words that any entrepreneur could possibly say:
Jessica was President of Women in Music at the time and with two others from the non-profit they started Women in Music. Everyone on Cosynd’s “small but effective” team had worked directly with creators as attorneys or in artist services so they knew personally the issues facing creatives.
Cosynd built their service making it simple for music creators to fill out split sheets and ensure they’re in order to truly set out how the copyright is divided and who has permissions to license and sell the copyright legally. They expanded to cover creators at large by making their split sheets applicable for video, images, and documents.
As the creators were coming in and their services expanded their partners asked: “Hey, you already have the pipes for copyright registration. Could you just build that out for our users too?”
And so, they now automate filings with the Copyright Office when creators fill in the applications with Cosynd. Jessica notes: “I think so far we’re the only ones in the music industry that are really doing it.”
The CASE Act
What Jessica and the team do at Cosynd is to make the resources available and assured for small creators. As the power dynamic within the creative industries shifts away from major entities and towards creators working independently or on smaller scales, these kinds of up-starts are vital.
The CASE Act is currently making it’s way through Congress that has the potential to completely change people’s abilities to fight copyright infringements in court. Cosynd have been major advocates of the Act and with backing from the likes of the NMPA, Songwriters Guild and the Association of Photographers it’s starting to truly gain traction.
The Senate version of the bill passed through the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this year. This month it passed the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee to be put to a vote before the end of the year.
So what exactly is the CASE Act proposing?
The CASE Act, the Copyright Alternative in Small Claims Enforcement Act, looks to set up an entirely new small claims court for copyright lawsuits. Three judges would govern the new court and it would completely open up the routes to taking action when you can’t afford an attorney or have the time to go through a drawn out court case.
“That’s been the barrier, I think, for a lot of creators; they thought, ‘hey this is no problem, I’ll just file a lawsuit’ and then once they realise the true economic bearings of that – it’s a fairly expensive fight,” Jessica told me.
“Some attorneys won’t even take on your case if you don’t have an ironclad case because there’s no guarantee that you’ll actually win, no guarantee you will actually get paid.”
If the CASE Act gets passed into legislation then anyone could take their case to the new court as long as their work is registered with the Copyright Office. It would limit the damages you can receive, only in that court, but overall the potential savings and the vastly easier access to making your claim more than balance it out.
“It’s a far quicker timeline. It’s less expensive and it’s just a faster way of getting on with life as opposed to federal cases which could drag out and cost way more,” adds Jessica.
As me and Jessica touched on briefly in our talk, the CASE Act is very similar to a proposal that came before. So what stopped it before?
Jessica says that a lot of it is awareness, especially amongst the creators it would help and the organisations that work with and for them. But as the bill makes its way to a vote this year with support from both sides, it has gained significantly more traction amongst the music community.
“But still a lot of creators and a lot of rights holders aren’t aware of it and that’s why we’re really working with organisations like the Copyright Alliance. I’m trying to educate our community as much as possible because this is going to be a game changer for them.”
How can people show their support to try and get the CASE Act legislated?
Jessica says: “There are many ways that you can do so and the Copyright Alliance is a great place to start. They have a great tool where anyone in the US can contact their local representative and express their support through social media, through direct email or providing the telephone number to call.”
Back in 2012 a similar Small Claims Track was launched in England and Wales to resolve low-value copyright infringement cases. There was a clear barrier to resolving these issues for the proliferation of copyright-able creations and so the new route for claims was created.
The CASE Act could be monumental in the changing music industry in the US and further creative landscape to ensuring that creators have the same rights and protections no matter how big or small they are.
“This thing you put so much time and effort into creating and you can actually protect it. That’s a huge deal,” closed Jessica.
Pacific is a beat maker that has been growing from strength to strength lately. Their most popular beat to date is called Cruisin and it has been viewed over 2 million times. Cruisin is also used in all Fortnite videos from the World Champion Bugha.
Pacific uses their YouTube channel to promote the beats they currently have available to license on their website. All beats are able to be licensed at a very affordable price.
Pacific has really been pumping out the beats lately with great success. Expect to see a lot more from them in the future!
This year saw Lil Nas X and his blend of country Hip-Hop in every mall, TV advert, on every radio station, at every party – and he’s only 1 piece in a new cultural wave.
Whether you wanted to or not, you heard Old Town Road this year – or one of its 756 remixes. It was a hit, breaking the record for most weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 with the Billy Ray Cyrus version. I think it marked a cultural shift and the start of something new, at least on the scale it is growing to.
What was notable about Old Town Road is that it brought together the two most significant genres in North American music right now. Two massive genres that have stood side by side but dared not to cross each other in public except in extremely rare circumstances. Before this years wave, few would have thought to put country music and Hip-Hop in the same room together.
But the viral success of Old Town Road did what all significant trend setters do. Lil Nas X took advantage of meme culture to start the track’s spread across the internet and popular culture, but it did something much more culturally significant to define itself.
It broke down the wall between two different realms and allowed them to exist side by side, in a way that people genuinely wanted – why do you think it was so popular! It tapped into two completely different yet individually massive audiences – if you get it right, that’s a sure fire way to creating something massive.
Not long after Billy Ray Cyrus hopped on with one of the first of Lil Nas X’s many remixes – further remixes went on to include Miley Cyrus, Mason Dixon (Walmart yodelling kid), BTS member RM and more – Blanco Brown popped up with a track called ‘The Git Up’.
Blanco Brown’s track tapped into the worldwide trap craze, taking the Hip-Hop and country crossover another level further. Described by some as the “sequel” to Old Town Road, it ensured that the crossover wasn’t just a one-hit wonder but a cultural trend. People went mad for The Git Up… they wanted more.
Country rap isn’t a new phenomena for 2019 however. It’s been a long time coming, and taken many forms As far back as the ’60s we had ‘talking blues’, a strand of country music defined by talking or rhythmic speech (hey that sounds kinda like rapping). Of course this was entirely separate from what we define as rap or Hip-Hop.
But it didn’t take long after the eruption of MC’s and rapping spread across America for the first crossovers to show up. Blowfly showed his country influences in his 1980 single Blowfly’s Rapp, MCing with his southern accent over old school Hip-Hop vibes.
The 80s didn’t shy away from blends between the two genres whilst Hip-Hop was still emerging in its infancy. Described as “cowboy rap’s Rosetta stone”, Trickeration’s Western Gangster Town also marked 1980 as a landmark year for laying upon ears the beginnings of this unusual hybrid. It’s also credited as being the first Gangster Rap record.
As Hip-Hop proliferated across America in the ’80s, rap began it’s trajectory towards the worldwide sensation it is today. In the present day Hip-Hop is bigger than rock music, the first genre to take it’s crown in 60 years. With the sheer vast world of music that now exists under the tree of Hip-Hop, of course many strains developed and evolved into their own sub-genres.
Those roots of country rap however never developed a particular movement within Hip-Hop, they just existed from time to time on the outskirts. Though from the mid-’80s and through the ’90s Southern rap came to distinguish itself as its own chapter of the emerging genre.
It wasn’t the country music crossover that you hear in songs like The Git Up and Old Town Road. Nonetheless Southern Rap got branded ‘country rap’ thanks to the regional origins of defining groups like Geto Boys and UGK from Texas, and later Outkast taking the south worldwide.
It didn’t sound like country music, but growing up in the South they couldn’t help but have that influence no matter how insignificant it was. Pimp C once rapped in Let Me See It: “This ain’t no mother fuckin’ Hip-Hop records, these country rap tunes.”
The unlikely hybrid genre became more of a reality than namesake in the 2000s. Unfortunately; most of us will remember Kid Rock and if you remember his 1999 track Cowboy then you’ll recognise how the undercurrent of country and rap has been flowing for quite a while. Kid Rock burped his country rap stylings onto the airwaves sporadically throughout the first years of the 21st century. You’ll all remember this one…
Sorry for making you relive that trauma but I had to go through it writing this. Never suffer alone.
Cowboy Troy stepped onto the scene in 2005 and has every right to claim himself a true pioneer in blending real country music with real rap. Blending “shredding rock guitar riffs and a rap delivery”, he saw reasonable success with his album ‘Loco Motive’. But stalling at number 15 in the charts and never surpassing it, he wasn’t to be the definer of a new cultural movement in music.
Then the ‘Yee Haw’ movement came about. Looking for something new and original to fuse into their music, some Hip-Hop producers began incorporating country music into their sounds in just the past few years. This bizarre uptake of the disparate genre set the table for Lil Nas X.
It wasn’t quite Old Town Road popular, but in 2017 Young Thug had an undeniable country rap hit with Family Don’t Matter. It laid the modern foundation for iconic melting pot of trap beats, rapping, and deep south accents and themes.
What were once two very defined and separate genres have become intermingled. Many of the artists know and work together, recognise each other and even shout musical brethren out to give them props.
Who would’ve thought said 5 years ago that the longest running number 1 single would be a crossover between Hip-Hop and country music with a breakout, gay rapper featuring Billy Ray Cyrus on his track.
Maybe it was a meme. Maybe it will die out in our fast-food, internet culture of throwaway entertainment. But I think this will be the beginning of a new breed of Pop Music taking the best (or worst, it’s subjective) of country and Hip-Hop together in twine.
It seems like just yesterday we were posting our very first live session and now 52 artists later, we’ve made it a year.
It’s been an incredible first year for the sessions. We’ve had many artists come through our doors, worked at multiple festivals, co-hosted gigs with artists we’ve recorded, and had a ball doing it.
Seeing the variety of artists that come through the doors of the Parlour Studio, watching them come to life with their unique and distinctive playing, and then sharing that with you, the viewers, is a pleasure none of us could take for granted.
The man running a lot of the Session’s behind the scenes, Ed Pipkin shared how he feels after a year, saying: “It’s crazy to think that it’s been a year already. The whole team is humbled by all of the praise and attention that everyone has shown towards the project since it’s beginning.
“Our phase 1 goal was to provide up and coming artists with a platform with which to showcase their talents to the world, and provide them with a professional looking and sounding video to add to their portfolio. And we feel that we have achieved this. There is loads more scope for the project to move forward in new ways which is really exciting. I think I speak for the whole team when I say that we can’t wait to provide another years worth of exciting and innovative sessions.”
We have so much more to come, so as always: keep your eyes peeled on RouteNote Sessions!
Winter Mountain joined us in the Parlour studio for another breathtaking RouteNote Session bigger and better than the last.
You may remember a while ago a little ol’ group called Winter Mountain coming in and recording an excellent RouteNote Session. They’re back and this time there’s a whole band to fill your ears with the gorgeous, genre-spanning delights of their songs.
There’s an incredible cover of The Dubliners’ Whiskey in the Jar to start you off before performing some of their own tracks just for you. Altogether the band is a powerful force and one your ears are going to want to face.
Find each track from Winter Mountain’s RouteNote Session on all major streaming services and download stores.