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Why the UK’s live biz is set for major resurgence

The UK’s live music industry is set for a dramatic post-lockdown resurgence, according to Will Page, the author of Tarzan Economics: Eight Principles of Pivoting Through Disruption. Below, the former Spotify and PRS for Music chief economist presents his groundbreaking research.

This article was first published by Music Business Worldwide and we thought it was so good, that we wanted to republish it. Our thanks to MBW publisher Tim Ingham for agreeing.

 


 

‘Ships passing each other in the night’ is how I described Britain’s live and recorded music industries in a Billboard article during the dark days of lockdown, June 2020.

Streaming had become a ‘stay at home stock’, front loading growth in subscribers and streaming volumes. By contrast, live music had been all but silenced by the restrictions put on our freedoms to curtail the pandemic.

That article provided the evidence base to help policymakers, and contributed to the UK Government announcing a GBP £1.6 billion funding package for the arts the following month, and then the UK Government launching a £750 million insurance scheme for live events the following year.

What matters, as one Scottish Chancellor constantly told me, is ‘evidence-based policy making, not policy-based evidence making’.

I was indebted to the UK’s PRS for Music, which licences live events so that its songwriter members can collect performance royalties when their songs are played at concerts.

Its data on the British market, combined with data on recorded-music spending by the Entertainment Retailers’ Association, allowed me to model consumer spend during a time of crisis.

Now, they’ve let me update the analysis.

The exclusive insights garnered from this work are jaw-dropping. Buckle up.

 

Live vs recorded music spend. (Anyone remember 2019?)

Let’s go back to when the world was normal.

In 2019, British gig-goers spent GBP £1.7 billion on concert tickets (or ‘box office’), a fifth more than the £1.4 billion that consumers spent on recorded music in the same 12 months.

Combined, British music fans spent a total of £3.1 billion on music in 2019.

(Also: this concert spend captures only the primary ticketing market — what’s commonly known as the ‘face value’ – and ignores secondary markets and ancillary spend.)

Then, music was silenced from our stage, but surged on our phones.

In the surreal year of 2020, ‘box office’ collapsed 90% in the UK to just £200 million – whereas spending on recorded music accelerated by 6% to breach the £1.5 billion watermark.

As lockdown eased in 2021, streaming’s success continued, pushing UK recorded music spend closer to £1.7 billion (ironically, the same value of the UK box office before the pandemic), whereas live spend recovered some of its losses capturing £700 million in box office (still less than half what it once was).

 

The importance of ‘wallet share’ – and how UK consumers spend just 0.2% of their money on music

We can stack both components of the British music industry on top of one another and add a final piece of the puzzle: wallet share.

The team at the Office of National Statistics who studied Covid’s impact on UK consumer spend kindly provided me with data on recreation and culture spend. This enabled me to measure total UK spend on music as a share of what is often termed ‘the entertainment dollar’.

Think about this for a wee minute: one pound in every ten spent today in Britain is on recreation and leisure – yet only two percent of that leisure spend (which pans out as just 0.2% of the grand total) is spent on live and recorded music.

Deflating, huh?

Now, let’s get to our chart.

On the left, spend on recorded music in green, stacked with box office spend in grey. On the right, the red line represents the share of leisure spend.

The gin-and-tonic relationship of increasing subscriptions driving increasing gig-going increased wallet share from 2% in 2015 to 2.2% in 2019 – a bigger share of a bigger wallet.

As lockdown hit in 2020, wallets contracted and wallet share sank to 1.3% (less share of less money), recovering to 1.6% last year.

Now let’s figure out what these lofty figures mean for artists.

For live music, we strip out fees and taxes from the face value of the ticket and give the artist 75% of what’s remaining.

For recorded music we take the label’s own wholesale value of music and give the artist 25%.

Bizarrely, these assumptions throw up an 80/20 rule for 2019: 80% of artist income came from gigs, and 20% from recordings.

As live music is the main breadwinner for most artists, its silencing in 2020 overshadowed streaming growth, wiping 70% off their income.

If artists were struggling to make a living before we locked down the UK economy, then they had 70% less to make a living after.

And in 2021, the partial recovery in live and continued growth in streaming got artist income to only half what it once was. For individual artists, (less so for firms), that’s really tough.

While there’s no such thing as an ‘average artist’, an average pay cut of 70% raises questions of survival.

In 2019, live music income was bigger (and distributed among the few) while recorded music income was smaller (and distributed amongst the many).

The pandemic suddenly changed that mix.

As streaming has many more mouths to feed – and there’s nothing else to feed them with – it’s little surprise that the UK industry dragged itself through an arduous Parliamentary Inquiry during the lockdown years.

Now let’s focus on the ‘suffering and recovery’ in live music.

In a New Year essay I showed that, since the London Olympics, all the growth in UK live music was contained within stadiums and festivals – increasing their share from 23% in 2012 to 40% in 2019.

That’s at the expense of theatres, clubs and grassroots venues which have felt squeezed out of the British market, in absolute and relative terms.

The chart below neatly illustrates that the harder they come, the harder they fall: Stadiums and festivals lost more box office spend than arenas, theatres and clubs combined in 2020, reducing their share of UK box office down to a measly 10 percent.

From boom to bust to boom again, 2021 saw these outdoor events grow box office by over quarter of a billion, raising their share of box office to a record-breaking 45%.

To use ‘long tail’ language, the UK live industry has never been so ‘hit heavy’ – where the spoils go to so few events.

Where we go now

These insights throw up questions that a global industry can learn from.

Sure, we’re still a long way off our pre-pandemic peak of £3.2bn consumer spend and 2.2% share of wallet.

But back to Gordon Brown’s point about evidence-based policy making (and not policy-based evidence making), this work gives policymakers and industry professionals the necessary foundation to figure out what assistance and actions are required to get us back to where we once belonged.

This isn’t going to be easy.

Wallets are set to be squeezed further this year and next. That said, with the internecine nature of the Parliamentary Inquiry behind us, the imperative is for all of us – policymakers, professionals and performers – to come together to unlock the ‘coiled spring’ demand for music on British stages up and down the country.

James Taylor [not that one!] heads up music for Wembley Stadium. He sees this coiled spring(ing) into action: this summer, a record-breaking 16 concerts are taking place at the famous stadium with a staggering 1.3 million tickets sold; that’s the population of Edinburgh and Glasgow, combined!

Now the dust has settled, let’s remind ourselves that music is the alchemy in the room that brings us together. And with the pandemic finally behind us, those rooms will surely be packed to capacity.

If the collective ‘we’ get this right, it’ll be more like a slingshot than a rebound.

The author would like to thank: John Mottram and Frances Hodgson (PRSforMusic); Katherine Kent and Luke Croydon (Office of National Statistics), Liz Martins (HSBC Economics), Tim Chambers, Bill Gorjance, Ralph Simon, Entertainment Retailers Association and the BPI.

He would also like to share his thanks to Dice for their comprehensive data on the UK live events industry.

Will Page’s Tarzan Economics: Eight Principles of Pivoting Through Disruption is out now via Simon & Schuster (UK) and Little, Brown and Company (US).

 


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Tomorrowland launches record label

Tomorrowland, the world’s biggest dance music festival, has launched Tomorrowland Music, a new record label which will be distributed worldwide through Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, a division of Universal Music Group (UMG).

The Berlin-based label will be led Alexander Neipp, Daniel Schmidt and Magnus Textor (Virgin Records) and Tina Adams (Virgin Music Label & Artist Services). Its first release, out tomorrow (27 August), will be ‘You Got the Love’ by Never Sleeps, a new project by Afrojack and Chico Rose.

Michiel Beers, CEO and founder of Tomorrowland, says: “Creativity is something that can’t be stopped at Tomorrowland. I’m very proud of how resilient our team was to find new ways of bringing Tomorrowland into the reality of the last period. We have taken the extra time to focus on projects that were on our list for a long time and one of them was definitely launching our own Tomorrowland Music label.

“Michel Van Buyten, music manager of Tomorrowland Music, will work closely together with artists to help create strong stories around their releases. With the combined forces of our dedicated label team, Tomorrowland Media House, and the different Virgin Music teams worldwide, our aim is to introduce fans in every corner of the world to the most exciting projects in electronic music.”

Tomorrowland, which has been held in Boom, Belgium, since 2005, was cancelled in 2021 for a second year running after local authorities pulled its permit, citing concerns over Covid-19.

“I’m confident the new label is going to be a special place and a great home for artists”

A digital festival, Tomorrowland: Around the World, took place on 16 and 17 July, featuring music from Armin van Buuren, Nicky Romero and Charlotte de Witte.

Frank Briegmann, chairman and CEO of Universal Music Central Europe, comments: “Over the past 15 years Tomorrowland has built a reputation as one of the world’s leading festivals and electronic music brands by consistently expanding and evolving their relationship with music fans. Today, Tomorrowland is one of Europe’s most innovative music brands, respected by artists and loved by the millions of people who have attended their events around the world.

“We are delighted to have partnered with them to support the launch of their new label venture and to have created a uniquely flexible model utilising our expert and proven teams at Virgin Records Germany, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services teams around the world, and other flagship UMG labels worldwide to help drive success and create global hits for Tomorrowland. We look forward to a very successful partnership together, and to further enhancing our ability to provide partners, labels and artists with new and innovative ways to achieve global success.”

“Joining forces with Tomorrowland Music feels like love at first sight,” adds Magnus Textor, head of A&R for Virgin Records Germany. “It’s great to see that we share the same passion for electronic music and artists. Everyone who has ever been to Tomorrowland or even just seen one of their event films has experienced their dedication. Therefore, I’m confident the new label is going to be a special place and a great home for artists.”

 


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BMG acquires German promoter Undercover

BMG Rights Management, the Berlin-based record label and music publisher, is entering the live business for the first time with the acquisition of a majority stake in promoter/event production firm Undercover.

Brunswick-based Undercover, which usually promotes in excess of 200 concerts and shows annually, will form the basis for a new live music and events business unit within BMG in Germany. The company also serves a tour agent, brokering tours and festivals for national and international artists across Germany, Austria and Switzerland (GSA), and develops and produces its own touring formats.

Undercover CEO Michael Shacke and his team of 30 will remain in place following the acquisition, the terms of which were not disclosed and which is expected to close by the end of this month.

The deal, says BMG, means that, in addition to “releasing recordings and publishing songs, BMG can now offer artists an integrated tour promotion and ticketing service” on an opt-in basis.

“An important part of our job will be to form a centre of excellence for events”

Dominique Casimir, BMG’s EVP of repertoire and marketing for continental Europe, says: “Moving into live is the logical extension of BMG’s plan to integrate all the services an artist could need under one roof, with the artist brand at the centre of it all. Crucially, we have found in Michael Schacke and his team a partner who shares our values.”

“I founded this company in 1991 to be able to perform with my band, and that’s how I became a promoter. This idea has since grown into a nationwide concert agency with over 30 employees,” adds Schacke. “Discussions about a partnership with BMG commenced long before the coronavirus pandemic, but we are now perfectly set up for when the market returns.

“There is a significant opportunity for us working together to offer a genuine alternative for artists in Germany and beyond, building on Undercover’s established recipe of ‘live entertainment and artist partnership’.”

The acquisition comes during a time of upheaval in the Covid-hit German live music market, and follows the launch of new promoter DreamHaus – also based in Berlin, and staffed with a number of former Live Nation Germany employees – last week.

Maximillian Kolb, managing director of BMG GSA, says: “Artists want partners who build their business around them, rather than the other way around. Above all, this means offering the best possible service.

“Moving into live is the logical extension of BMG’s plan to integrate all the services an artist could need”

“The German music market has proven to be extremely adaptable and is one of the strongest in the world, especially in the live segment. I am very happy that we have become the first territory within BMG to be able to offer a complete service portfolio to artists, including live.”

Launched in 2008 as the successor to Sony BMG, BMG Rights Management – owned by German media conglomerate Bertelsmann – represents artists including Iron Maiden, John Legend, Bring Me the Horizon, Bloc Party, Alt-J, Tame Impala, Morrissey, MIA, Frank Ocean, Jess Glynne, David Crosby and Kylie Minogue for label services and/or publishing.

Undercover will form part of a network of Bertelsmann brands, the Bertelsmann Content Alliance, which also includes broadcaster RTL, book publisher Penguin Random House and magazine publishing Gruner and Jahr (Stern, Capital, Geo).

Casimir, who is also a board member of the Bertelsmann Content Alliance, explains: “An important part of our job will be, together with the Undercover team, to form a centre of excellence for events within the Content Alliance. We look forward to working with the other divisions and together adding even more value to our artists and media brands by creating bespoke live experiences.”

 


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Moving online: The booming business of livestreaming

With fans left deprived of the live experience and much of the industry facing stagnated revenue streams,  livestreaming is developing fast as a credible new source of income for artists, promoters and other rightsholders.

Livestreaming has been used one way or another for many years now, be it by festivals looking to expand their audience reach, artists seeking to enhance fan engagement or maximise audience numbers, streaming services looking to tap into the live business, or video games crossing over into the music space.

In the wake of the coronavirus crisis and live event shutdown, many have moved into the virtual space as a means of driving much-needed revenue and of raising funds and awareness, or simply of boosting spirits.

According to International Music Managers Forum’s (IMMF) Jake Beaumont-Nesbitt, however, the coronavirus crisis has not instigated anything completely new here, but rather has “accelerated and diverted” what was already happening in this online live event space.

As the business begins to become accustomed to its new reality, however long it may last, the potential and need to properly commercialise the livestreaming game is becoming ever more apparent.

“Who knew it would take a global pandemic to serve as a catalyst for some serious conversations about what this side of the business could look like?”

“One of the flip sides of the global health crisis, so to speak, is that people are realising there is a commercial business here,” Ruth Barlow, director of live licensing at the independent Beggars Group of labels tells IQ.

“Who knew it would take a global pandemic to serve as a catalyst for some serious conversations about what this side of the business could look like?”

Barlow, who has been licensing livestreams for the Beggars Group for around ten years, occupying the space between live and recorded and attempting to get both to see eye to eye, believes there is potential for “a business that both the live industry and labels can share in here”.

“I think there are really strong indicators that a healthy online business can sit comfortably aside real-time events and has the potential to generate ancillary revenue for rightsholders, promoters and artists alike,” says Barlow.

Too often, she says, there is a tendency for the live industry to see streaming live from festivals and other events purely as ‘promotional’ activity, leading rightsholders, artists and others to miss out on commercialising the content and collecting royalties on commercial platforms.

“These big live companies could act as the trusted gatekeepers for this, figuring out the licensing and taking the strain off artists”

Beaumont-Nesbitt agrees that the trend to view livestreams predominantly as marketing opportunities has led to “a failure on the part of major record labels to properly move into this space over the past 10 to 15 years.”

Now as offline replaces online for a period, Beaumont-Nesbitt believes the major players of the live entertainment and, potentially, esports worlds can capitalise on the potential of livestreaming.

Through leveraging in-depth audience knowledge, together with pre-existing brand relationships and well-trusted festival and event identities, the live industry could gain an edge over its recorded counterparts in the online event creation space.

Much like in the real-life live events market, Beaumont-Nesbitt expects consolidation to be key here, with a few major players likely to prove to have both the recognisable identity and the diversity of offering to succeed.

“These big live companies could act as the trusted gatekeepers for this, figuring out the licensing and taking the strain off artists.”

“A proper conversation is needed about licensing to create a mutually beneficial situation for the recorded and live sector alike”

However, for Barlow, it is imperative that the recorded sector be involved too, as generally permission is needed from labels and the artists’ publishers before any form of recording or broadcast takes place.

It’s been an “uphill struggle” over the years to convince promoters that labels have a say in livestreaming, says Barlow, yet paying for an artist to play a show does not automatically include the rights to livestream these performances.

Licensing, it seems, is a sticky issue within the livestreaming business. Unlike at an offline event, audiences online spread beyond national boundaries, stretching the certainty of many national collective management organisations’ (CMOs) license agreements.

The diversity of online platforms and the lack of unification or regulation between them also complicates matters, with each negotiating different licensing rules. A live stream on Instagram, for example, is recorded as well and available on demand for 24 hours or longer after it was “live”, which technically turns a livestream into a recording, requiring a different set of rights. A growing number of platforms also stream primarily user-generated content, making it much harder to identify which licensor holds the rights in the content.

“A proper conversation is needed about licensing to create a mutually beneficial situation for the recorded and live sector alike,” says Barlow.

The future of livestreaming looks bright, as more consumers get accustomed to viewing live content online and the return date of live events as we know them remains uncertain

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, Beggars Group has been partaking in another form of livestreaming, one that does not originate from a live – or even “virtual” event – in real time, but rather involves the resurfacing of old live footage, that is then repurposed and broadcast at a set time on platforms such as YouTube Premieres.

This form of livestreaming allows viewers to watch and react to content together, mimicking the temporality and collectivism of a live show. Beggars Group is able to use such content as, over the years, it has been licensing and retaining the rights to a whole host of live performances.

“The level of engagement with long-form content on certain platforms has been pretty bonkers,” says Barlow, hinting that more previously unseen footage from across the Beggars Group’s roster is set to be aired soon.

The future of livestreaming looks bright, as more consumers get accustomed to viewing live content online and the return date of live events as we know them remains uncertain. As the lockdowns rumble on and infection rates continue to rise in many places, it seems that rebuilding consumer confidence may prove tricky and, even after the peak of the pandemic has passed, there will be a demographic that may seek their live experience elsewhere, at least for a time.


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Kaash Paige tops 2020’s first Radar Station

Rising R&B singer Kaash Paige tops the first Radar Station of the new decade, in a chart dominated by drill and rap artists and topped by two acts still in their teens– as well as an alien-meme-turned-Instagram-influencer…

Dallas-born Kaash Paige, 18, has climbed from fifth place to lead the Radar Station chart in January, following the release of her single ‘64’ and debut EP Parked Car Convos late last year.

The singer, who is represented by Cheryl Paglierani at United Talent Agency, is performing at Fortress Festival in Texas and the Miami edition of Live Nation’s Rolling Loud Festival in the coming months.

The remix of Kaash Paige’s most popular single, ‘Love Songs’, was released at the end of January, featuring Atlanta rapper 6lack.

In at second is the Kid Laroi, a 16-year-old Australian hip-hop artist that has stormed up the Radar Station chart over the past month. Releasing his debut EP aged just 14, the Kid has since appeared on stage with the likes of Manu Crook$, Tkay Maidza, Denzel Curry and Juice Wrld.

Dallas-born Kaash Paige, 18, has climbed from fifth place to lead the Radar Station chart in January

The Kid, who is represented by Niche Talent Agency, became the first Australian hip-hop artist to perform at Rolling Loud New York last year. His latest single, ‘Diva’, has amassed 3.5 million views on YouTube in just three days.

Lil Mayo becomes the first non-human entry to the Radar Station chart, as the three-foot-tall rubber doll – “the most savage alien on the ‘gram” – takes third place with his single ‘Be Gone Thot!’.

Created by US-based Alex Martyn, Lil Mayo emerged out of an extraterrestrial-themed page based on the ‘ayy lmao’ memes.

The Radar Station algorithm calculates the fastest-growing new artists by combining data across a number of online platforms, including Spotify, Facebook, Songkick and Last.fm. December’s number one was Coi Leray, who made history in securing the top spot for a third time.

See below for a Spotify playlist of last month’s top 20, plus the full chart with links to artists’ social media pages.

This monthLast monthArtistCountry
15Kaash PaigeUS
2211The Kid LaroiAustralia
3-Lil MayoUS
44King CombsUS
5-LoveleoUS
655Sam TompkinsUK
7-Lil PoppaUS
831Yung MalUS
922Hooligan HefsAustralia
10-PoundzUK
11-DJ SchemeUS
12162RenUK
13-RemaNigeria
1418Greentea PengUK
15196Renni RucciUS
1627Gabby BarrettUS
1710HP BoyzAustralia
1845Dirty HoneyUS
1914Rei AmiUS
205142 DuggUS

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XL Recordings’ A&R manager joins WME

WME has announced that Caroline Simionescu-Marin is joining its UK music division as an agent, effective immediately.

Simionescu-Marin, who was most recently the A&R Manager for XL Recordings, began her music career as editor of the UK urban music site and channel GRM Daily in 2013, aged just 18. While at GRM Daily, she created and developed the ‘New Gen’ brand, as well as playing a part in the early management of J Hus.

At XL, Simionescu-Marin curated the ‘New Gen’ compilation album, featuring the likes of AJ Tracey and Avelino, and signed underground British rapper Nines, releasing his first two albums, which both charted in the top 5 selling over 100,000 albums.

“I am very excited to be starting the next chapter of my career as an agent in WME’s UK music team”

“Caroline is going to be a brilliant addition to WME,” comment Brian Ahern, partner and co-head of WME’s London music division, and Lucy Dickins, head of UK Music at WME. “She’s completely immersed in the music she loves and what she has achieved so early in her career is really impressive. Her joining will further strengthen and grow the UK team as we kick off 2020.”

Simionescu-Marin says: “I am very excited to be starting the next chapter of my career as an agent in WME’s UK music team. I have admired the company for a long time and it’s exciting that, as well as music, WME has such a major reach across many other areas in global entertainment too. I can’t think of a better place to learn and grow.”

WME’s UK music division is also headed up by Adele and Mumford and Sons agent Lucy Dickins who recently appeared alongside her father Barry, co-founder of ITB, and brother Jonathan, founder of September Management, in a one-of-a-kind interview.

 


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TM presale campaign boosts Slipknot album success

Slipknot fans were granted first access to tickets for the band’s upcoming tour after purchasing their new album, in a campaign run by ticketing giant Ticketmaster.

Fans who pre-ordered We Are Not Your Kind received a code which will allow them to access the presale for tickets to Slipknot’s upcoming tour, when they go on sale next week.

The album became Slipknot’s first number one in 18 years in the UK, Ireland and Italy.

“When the heat was on and Slipknot was neck-and-neck with Ed Sheeran for the number one album, that’s when our long-term business partners at Roadrunner Records, Live Nation and Ticketmaster turned up the gas and worked in unison,” comments Cory Brennan of 5Bam Management.

Over 5.4 million fans in Ticketmaster’s twelve markets of the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands, France, Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Poland and Ireland were eligible to take part in the campaign.

“It’s a commonly used artist presale mechanism and really helps to strengthen the bond between the live and recorded music sectors”

Mark Jansen, senior director of artist services international at Ticketmaster says the company runs “over 100” presale campaigns each year in the UK, and that they are becoming “increasingly popular across Europe”.

“It’s a commonly used artist presale mechanism and really helps to strengthen the bond between the live and recorded music sectors,” explains Jansen.

“As well as coordinating the operational side of getting these tickets on sale, we’re now the go-to when an artist wants to reach their biggest fans ahead of an album and tour launch.”

Ticketmaster has run similar campaigns this year with Liam Gallagher, Vampire Weekend, Friendly Fires, James Arthur, Muse and Lewis Capaldi, with albums by the latter two artists also reaching number one.

Slipknot announced their full European tour yesterday (22 August). Presale opens at 9 a.m. (GMT) on 27 August, powered by Ticketmaster, with general tickets going on sale on 30 August.

 


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Radar Station newcomer Stunna 4 Vegas July’s top act

North Carolina rapper Stunna 4 Vegas leads the Radar Station chart for July, followed by fellow rappers and Radar debutants Coi Leray and Blanco Brown.

Collaborations with the likes of DaBaby and Offset have seen Stunna 4 Vegas raise his profile since the release of debut album Big 4X in May.

Currently touring the United States, the rapper – who grew up listening to the likes of TI, Gucci and Lil Wayne – is best known for tracks ‘Ashley’ and ‘Animal’, both featuring fellow North Carolina dweller DaBaby.

The Radar Station algorithm calculates the fastest-growing new artists by combining data across a number of online platforms, including Spotify, Facebook, Songkick and Last.fm. Last month’s chart topper was Italian production trio Meduza.

Hot on Stunna 4 Vegas’ heels is Coi Leray, daughter of Boston-born rapper Benzino. Garnering fame via songs released on Soundcloud, Leray released her debut mixtape, EveryThingCoZ, in 2018. The follow-up, EC2, came earlier this year, preceding US and European tour dates.

Collaborations with the likes of DaBaby and Offset have seen Stunna 4 Vegas raise his profile

The artist played at festivals including Live Nation-promoted Lollapalooza in Chicago.

Country trap artist Blanco Brown is best known for breakthrough hit ‘The Git Up’, which saw the singer spend four weeks at the top of Billboard’s Hot Country Songs chart. The song currently has almost 59 million listens on Spotify.

The hybrid nature of Brown’s music is inspired by his childhood, listening to hip hop artists at home in Atlanta and spending summers surrounded by country music in rural Butler, Georgia.

The artist, represented by United Talent Agency worldwide, has produced for high-profile acts including Chris Brown and Pitbull.

See below for a Spotify playlist of this month’s top 20, as well as the full chart with links to artists’ Facebook pages and booking agency details.

This monthLast monthArtistCountryAgency
165Stunna 4 VegasUS-
228Coi LerayUSParadigm (excl. N. America)
369Blanco BrownUSUTA
437Tones and IAUParadigm (North America), Free Trade (Europe), Lonely Lands (AU/NZ)
523Lil GotitUSAPA
622Sueco the ChildUS-
7122LightskinkeishaUS-
868DigdatUKPrimary (excl. N. America)
9156Unknown TUKEcho Location Talent
10424Rod WaveUS-
11134Domo WilsonUS-
12316Yung Baby TateUS-
13126Black PumasUSParadigm
14105Alfie TemplemanUKPrimary (excl. N. America)
1583Otoboke BeaverJAPDamnably
1642RiniAUNew World Artists (AU), Unified Music Group (RoW)
1736Sub UrbanUS-
1831OnefourAU-
19221Tm88USParadigm (excl. Europe)
2041Quin NfnUS-

For more details about the Radar Station, contact [email protected].

 


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Study: environmental cost of music higher than ever

A new study has revealed that the price consumers are willing to pay for listening to music has never been lower, whereas the environmental cost of music consumption is higher than ever before.

Dr Matt Brennan of the University of Glasgow led the research into the changing economic cost of recorded music and Dr Kyle Devine from the University of Oslo spearheaded research of the environmental cost of recording methods.

The study showed that the advent of music streaming platforms has led to a spike in carbon emissions, proving more harmful for the environment than before digitisation, despite cutting out the plastic pollution caused by CDs and vinyl.

“The good news is that overall plastic production in the recording industry has diminished since the heyday of vinyl,” says Devine. “However, the transition towards streaming recorded music from internet-connected devices has resulted in significantly higher carbon emissions than at any previous point in the history of music.”

The research analysed plastic usage within the recording industry at peak years for vinyl, cassette and CD sales in the United States. Vinyl produced 58 million kilograms (kg) of plastic waste in 1977, cassettes produced 56m kg and CDs 61m kg.

The amount of plastics used by the same recording industry had dropped to 8m kg by 2016, due to the advent of streaming.

“The transition towards streaming recorded music from internet-connected devices has resulted in significantly higher carbon emissions”

“These figures seem to confirm the widespread notion that music digitalised is music dematerialised. The figures may even suggest that the rises of downloading and streaming are making music more environmentally friendly,” says Devine.

“But a very different picture emerges when we think about the energy used to power online music listening. Storing and processing music online uses a tremendous amount of resources and energy – which has a high impact on the environment,” adds Devine.

The research translates the production of plastics and the electricity generated by storing and transmitting audio files into greenhouse gas equivalents (GHGs), in order to directly compare the overall environmental impact.

By 2016, music consumption generated GHGs of between 200m kg and 350m kg in the US alone, as compared to vinyl (140m kg), cassettes (136m kg) and CDs (157m kg).

“The point of this research is not to tell consumers that they should not listen to music, but to gain an appreciation of the changing costs involved in our music consumption behaviour,” says Brennan.

“We hope the findings might encourage change toward more sustainable consumption choices and services that remunerate music creators while mitigating environmental impact.”

 


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Jem Music Group appoints Naz Idelji managing director

International artist management company Jem Music Group has announced the appointment of Naz Idelji to the position of managing director.

In addition to heading up Jem Music Group, Idelji will also oversee TS5 Presents, the joint venture between Jem Music Group founder Colin Lester and singer Craig David.

Idelji has over 15 years’ experience as a senior executive within the UK music industry. She began her career as an intern at Warner Music, later taking on more senior positions at Warner, Universal Music, Sony Music UK and Ministry of Sound.

The new Jem Music Group managing director has coordinated projects with artists including N-Dubz, Craig David and Skepta, as well as creating and building a range of brands for Ministry of Sound and Clubland.

“Bringing in someone of Naz’s amazing experience, skillset and pedigree sets out a very clear mandate for our future, which is shaping up to be very exciting,” comments Lester.

“Bringing in someone of Naz’s amazing experience, skillset and pedigree sets out a very clear mandate for our future, which is shaping up to be very exciting”

“Naz will be responsible for expanding our operations into new international markets and will consolidate Craig David’s existing successes in a range of markets, which include France, Belgium, Australia and Southeast Asia,” adds Lester.

“I have worked with Colin for many years on a range of campaigns and have seen first-hand how passionate he is about maximising success for the artists he represents and about growing the Jem Music Group presence around the world,” says Idelji.

“This is an exciting opportunity at an exciting time for the music industry and I am very much looking forward to helping to build on the company’s existing successes.”

Jem Music Group has also appointed Jack Balsam to oversee its north London-based recording studio complex. Balsam will be responsible for both of the company’s recording studios, having previously engineered sessions with Craig David, DJ Oliver Heldens and Big Zuu. He will work closely with the management team at Jem Music Group and TS5 Presents.

 


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