The Beatles Rock Band Video Game Launched

Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr turned up onstage at Microsoft’s E3 press conference last night to plug the upcoming music game The Beatles: Rock Band. The game will include over 45 songs with others also available to download from a dedicated online store.

One – All You Need Is Love – will have all royalties from sales donated to the Doctors Without Borders charity. There’s a trailer too – the first sight of how the game will look. Watch it above and let us know what you think.

eMusic Adds Sony to Their Music Store But Reactions Have Been Terrible

A few days ago it was reported that eMusic has come to a deal with Sony to add their catalogue. However, there has been a lot of reaction from this new deal for eMusic, because this is the first major record label eMusic has added. Hypebot has a great preview of the service and then some interesting reactions that have been voiced on the eMusic message boards.

Jellybones: Thank you eMusic. Its been a good run here for me. I love emusic, been here over 5 years. But I can’t afford my tracks to be cut by 2/3 for the same price.

90 downloads will become 35. Sorry, not worth it for the selection. I can go buy a couple albums (maybe only 2 instead of 3) but I can get exactly what I want.

Kez RE: I feel sold out. It seems eMusic is enraptured with the dazzle of their future customer-trolls and have cast aside their loyal member base.

From the UK xtrev: As noted down in the bowels of the ‘Major label…’ thread, the new more expensive price plans have appeared on site today. Including Booster prices. Damn.

Don’t think I’ll be buying many more 50 track boosters at 20.99 UK pounds. That’s a HUGE increase over the previous 14.99. If this is an example of what it means to have major label content here, then frankly they can shove it.

btx: Except for very rare circumstances, I’m not particularly interested in giving my cash to the major labels, that’s why I come here. If it is going to cost me more for their presence [even if I should choose not to download their stuff], that may be the end for me.

d.w.: “Effective Jul 6, 2009, your plan will change to the new eMusic Plus plan which gives you 37 downloads for $14.99 every 30 days.

We’re sorry that we’ve had to retire your current plan, but we’re confident that you’ll find even more music to love among the many new additions to the music catalog. And of course, you can always choose a different plan by visiting the Plan Options page within Your Account.”

My current plan is (grandfathered) 65 tracks per month for $14.99. This means that your Sony deal results in a 100% per track price increase over what I’m paying currently.

I appreciate(?) that you’ll be adding a lot of music from major labels that I could frankly not give a crap about (Alicia Keys — really?), but literally halving the amount of tracks I get on my current plan is a bit much to take. I’ve been a subscriber since 2000, but I am seriously considering canceling at this point.

eMusic is one of our great partners here at RouteNote and I would have rather seen the service stay with the indie industry and not attach themselves to the major labels, but now it seems like there is a new opportunity in the market for another indie service.

How Much Does Simon Cowell Make for Sony

simon_cowellI was sitting in my living this evening watching Britain’s Got Talent Final and really wondered what Simon Cowell actually owns and how much his companies make. Well I thought I would write a quick article and run through the basics of the Cowell empire.

Simon founded a record label and television company Syco which encompasses music, film and television. Within these companies they operate television shows such as The X Factor, Britains Got Talent, American Inventor, America’s Got Talent and Grease is the Word.

Cowell claims Syco accounted for approximately 40% of Sony Music Entertainment profit in 2006, despite only employing 14 people. By 2008, it was believed that Syco accounted for as much as 70% of Sony profits. In 2008 Sony music entertainment forecasted a net profit of $1.5 billion, thus making Simon Cowell’s companies estimated at $1.05 billion if they indeed did 70% of the profits.

RoyaltyShare Leaves Digital Music Distribution. RouteNote Offers RoyaltyShare Customers a Discount!

It has been reported over at PaidContent that RoyaltyShare is going to be exiting the digital distribution market. When it introduced its digital-distribution service last January, RoyaltyShare said it would provide a web-based platform for record labels and niche distributors to interact directly with digital retailers, bypassing the need to go through large digital aggregators such The Orchard. The company also said digital distribution would compliment its royalty service, which helps entertainment companies calculate royalties from digital sales.

Since this has happened to RoyaltyShare we would like to offer a hand to RoyaltyShare members who want to continue to digital distribute their music. If you signup to RouteNote and then contact us saying that you are from RoyaltyShare and your account name over there, then we will increase your percentage up from 90% to 95% of all sales.

Leighton Meester Has New Album Out Soon, but Now Featured in Cobra Starship

There are a lot of tv celebrities who are currently trying to move into the music space and Leighton Meester is a prime example. You might know Leighton from the popular television series Gossip Girl, but now she is give music a go and of course a major label has already jumped onboard and signed her. Meester signed with Universal and it going to be releasing her debut album very soon. She mentions that the album is going to be a bit electro and dance, so im very interested to see how it sounds.

Leighton has already been featured in a track by Cobra Starship and its actually very catchy, so let me know if you are going to buy her album if its like this!

Cobra Starship – Good Girls Go Bad ft. Leighton Meester

Get My Music onto iTunes

For a long time artists have been finding difficult to get their music on iTunes and other digital music stores. Here at RouteNote we are trying to make it easier than ever before for unsigned and independent artists to get their music onto these stores and more. At RouteNote we currently offer artists to get their music onto iTunes and other stores completely for free with no upfront fees. RouteNote is also going to bring on a lot more partners in the near future which will make our service a lot more appealing than all ours in the market.

Stay tuned for more big news about partnerships and offers coming soon.

Naked French Models Are The Next Ok Go on Treadmills

Im always excited to see new music video ideas and here is one that probably goes one step further than OK Go on treadmills. The song is called Baby Baby Baby by Make The Girl Dance, and it features a series of models strutting their stuff naked down a Paris street. Maybe you will also notice that the words to the song are flashing on the black boxes that are strategically placed over the girls.

Im sure this tracks will cause a bit of a stir and get lots of airplay, especially on MTV Dance!

Music Retail Sales for 2008 Drop 6%

The U.K. recorded music business held up reasonably well in 2008 with trade value down by 5.3% to £894 million ($1.368 billion) and retail value down by 6% to £1.308 billion ($2.002 billion), according to new figures from trade body the BPI. That compares to falls of 13% and 15% for, respectively, trade and retail value between 2006 and 2007.

In 2008 album sales were still on the decline by 3.2% by volume while at the same time digital album sales was up 65% from 2007. Digital albums by Coldplay, Duffy and Kings of Leon each moved more than 100,000 units last year.

The figures also show that 109.8 million single tracks were downloaded in 2008, a 41.6% year-on-year increase. Digital tracks now account for 95.3% of the singles market.

“The rapid growth of the digital market is clear evidence that British record companies have the business models in place to deliver music to fans online,” said BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor in a statement. 

“The impressive fact that one pound in every ten is earned online shows that labels are leading the way in the entertainment world in developing digital services.”

He added: “BPI’s research also shows that U.K. record companies invest 21% of turnover on sales in A&R expenditure – identifying and developing new musical talent – over the last three years.”

Rock was still the dominant genre in the albums market, representing 35.7% of sales, while pop increased its share from 22.3% to 25.3%.

In the retail sector, specialists still dominate the albums market, with HMV the market leader with a 24.1% share by expenditure. Tesco is the biggest mass merchant with a 10.5% share, while iTunes has 5.7% total market share in the U.K. and dominates the digital album market. The Internet home delivery services, including Amazon and, account for 17.6% of the market.

For singles, iTunes’ share of expenditure is up to 65.7% of the market, while unit share is 71.8%.

Research also shows that 7.2 million MP3 players were sold in 2008, with a third of the U.K. population now owning one. Almost a third (28%) of 16 to 24 year olds listen to music at least weekly on a mobile phone, with one in 10 using services such as Spotify and at least once a week.

Source: Billboard

Pandora Launches Their One Service and Desktop App

pandora-logoPandora is a music startup that he been getting a lot of great reviews of late. Pandora will reach profitability in 2010 according to founder Tim Westergren. Revenue is expected to double  this year to $40 million thanks to targeted ads delivered to 27 million registered users which are growing at the rate of 50,000 to 60,000.

With the iPhone app release for Pandora they have been seeing a third of their growth come in this area. “It’s changed the perception people have of what Internet radio is, from computer-radio to radio, because you can take the iPhone and just plug it into your car, or take it to the gym.”

The yesterday Pandora also announced their new Pandora One service, which is just Pandora a few added features and of course no ads. Pandora One is a subscription based service in which is only $36 a year. Additionally with Pandora One they have released a desktop application which includes high quality streaming, a personalized look, a mini player and extended player timeouts