Katy Perry won the People’s choice Awards 2012

Katy Perry selected as the top nominees for the People’s Choice Awards 2012 on Tuesday in Los Angeles at the Nokia Theatre. Other big names on the initial list of nominees include LMFAO, Maroon 5, Lady Gaga, Adele and Beyoncé. Perry was just behind with seven nods, including Favorite Female Artist, Favorite Song of the Year “E.T.”, Favorite Pop Artist, Favorite Animated Movie Voice “The Smurfs”and Favorite Music Video for “Last Friday Night "T.G.I.F..”

In the music categories, the Favorite Male Artist race includes Eminem, Bruno Mars, Justin Bieber, Enrique Iglesias and Blake Shelton, while Perry will be fighting Adele, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift for Favorite Female Artist. The Song of the Year race includes Gaga’s “The Edge of Glory,” Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep,” LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem,” Maroon 5′s “Moves Like Jagger” and Perry’s “E.T.” Album of the Year includes discs from Adele, Beyoncé, Gaga, Britney Spears and Lady Antebellum, while Favorite Hip Hop Artist is a battle between Eminem, Jay-Z, Nicki Minaj, Pitbull and B.o.B.

Justin Beiber and Lil Twist joining for new album

Justin Bieber’s 2012 will soon include a Lil Twist collaboration. Bieber returned to the studio today to begin work on his own album Believe, reportedly stacked with help from Drake and Kanye West, yet has already lent his swag and increasing maturity which doesn’t necessarily include a new vocabulary to a track with the 18-year-old Young Money artist. Twist told MTV News that he’s prepared to release their finished product, “Wherever You Are,” shortly. “Y’all will have that real soon,” he said of high powered collaboration, off his debut album Don’t Get It Twisted. “It’s a fun record. Justin killed it. He’s, like, rap singing on it; another different sound for Justin.”

Yet the Bieb has been slowly chipping away at making a place for himself in hip hop for the better part of a year, answering every BET cypher snub with a new freestyle attempt or big-name collaboration partner. He kicked off the new year by teaming up with pal Jaden Smith for the holiday-appropriate “Happy New Year,” a song which definitely featured some singing, rapping and inspirational spoken word, and this longstanding collaboration tour shows no signs of slowing down at this point, we’re prepared to see every name from Adele to Odd Future on Believe‘s tracklisting. ”Just me and Justin, people been waiting on that,” Twist added. “That’s my brother right there. It’s just been a long time coming.”

HMV has another bleak Christmas

UK high street retailer has announced a like for like drop in sales of 8.1% in the five weeks running up to December 31st 2011. However the new move into technology and gadgets seems positive, with 500,000 headphones and 20,000 tablet computers sold.

UK police face fresh discrimination claims over urban music

The UK police have been accused of discriminating against the urban music scene by booking agents, umbrella trade group UK Music and even MPs, with commentators saying that the Metropolitan Police's risk assessment of live urban music gigs is based on the ethnicity of the audience and artists, adding that the Police can ask for strict safety measures to be put in place on the basis of this risk assessment, and can cancel gigs at short notice. Sarah McKinley, founder of Xtreme Talent Agency, an urban booking agency, said the risk assessment, using the controversial Form 696, was not being conducted sensibly. "Often the risk assessment happens after the night has been advertised. People have already spent money and then the night can get pulled." and John ho chairs the culture, media and sport committee in the House of Commons, said he continued to call for the "discriminatory and draconian" form 696 to be scrapped, after his committee first demanded its abolition in 2009. More at http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2012/jan/08/police-accused-discriminating-urban-music?newsfeed=true

RIP Bob and Sultan

Bob Weston, lead guitarist with Fleetwood Mac in the early 1970s has died aged just 64. And farewell to Sultan Khan, the expert Sarangi player who also composed music for films including the epic Ghandi (1982) and played with George Harrison, Alla Rakha and Ravi Shankar. He has died aged 71.

Gig cancelled, deposit not paid back .... no problem ....

The promoter behind a cancelled Nas concert due to take place on New Year's Eve in Angola was allegedly kidnapped last week by one of the failed event's financial backers. According to TMZ, a rather angry "concert impresario" called Henrique 'Riquhino' Miguel,kidnapped Patrick Allocco of AllGood Entertainment and his son, and demanded the return of the $300,000 advance paid to Nas and his support act Jemiah Jai and also an additional $50,000 to cover his expenses. It seems Nas was happy to pay back the $300,000, but didn't want to have pay the $50,000. Nas also wanted confirmation from Miguel that if the advance was returned he would not be subsequently held liable for any other losses relating to the cancelled show. A statement issued in Allocco's name last week read: "The hope is that Nas and Jemiah Jai will return all of the monies that were wired to them immediately so that our ransom may be paid and our safe return to the United States may be facilitated". It appears that the father and son remain 'semi' kidnapped after the intervention of the US Embassy in Angola - they have been handed over by the actual kidnappers and are now staying in a hotel, but Miguel is apparently able to block their leaving the country until the matter has been resolved.


Katy Perry reveals about her divorce with Russell Brand

A week after news insolvent that Katy Perry and Russell Brand are breaking up after a year of marriage; the pop singer has broken her silence. 

On Saturday, she took to twitter to open up publicly for the first time since the split. 

"I am so grateful for all the love and support I've had from people around the world," she wrote. "You guys have made my heart happy again." 

In another tweet minutes later, she addressed the tabloid chatter that has been swirling around since Brand filed for divorce in Los Angeles on December 30. Concerning the gossip, I want to be clear that NO ONE speaks for me, she said, "Not a blog, magazine, 'close sources' or my family." 

The tweets come days before Perry is set to make her first public appearance at the People's Choice Awards on Wednesday where she's up for a number of awards. 

The People's Choice Awards marks the beginning of a slew of expected appearances from the singer. She's also slated to make two appearances on her California Dreams Tour later this month, one on January 19 in Jakarta, Indonesia, and another on January 22 in the Philippines. 

Perry's next awards show appearance could take place February 12 at the Grammys, where she's up for two awards: Record of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance for "Firework." 

Brand released a statement at the time of the announcement, saying, "Sadly, Katy and I are ending our marriage. I will always adore her and I know we'll remain friends."

Cradle of punk doesn't need to be listed

London's 100 Club, home to early gigs by the Rolling Stones, Oasis, The Sex Pistols and the Clash, has failed in an attempt to get a heritage building listing from the UK Government, despite support from English Heritage in the Grade II listing building category. A statement from John Pemrose, Minister for Tourism, said "there's no denying the club's place in British pop music's history but in the end its only a stage and signage ... I can't help but feeling that giving the cradle of punk listed building status would not be quite in tune with the movement's driving spirit". Here here!

French fans launch Jackson action

In another bizarre twist in the Michael Jackson story, a group of French fans of the King of Pop are launching a legal action in France against Dr Conrad Murray, who has now been convicted of involuntary manslaughter after the singer's death in 2009 in the USA. They are each claiming symbolic damages of one Euro for the 'emotional damage' the death has had on them. Murray was sentenced to four years in prison.

EMI launch ReDigi claim

EMI has filed a lawsuit against digital track reseller ReDigi, alleging that the company’s plans to enable the selling of “used’’ digital music constitutes copyright infringement. On its website, ReDigi claims that the marketplace that it created to resell digital music is as legal as someone reselling an album to a used-record store. “Once you sell a song, you no longer have access to it,’’ the company says on the site. “This is how ReDigi stays legit, and how you now have access to an incredible marketplace where rights long accepted in the physical world may now be applied to digital goods.’’ http://bostonglobe.com/business/2012/01/07/emi-sues-cambridge-digital-music-reseller/bwemnUEMuWS6k9GKkJINdI/story.html and see http://www.musiclawupdates.com/?p=427

US recorded music sales show digital growth and a first rise in album sales since 2004

Following hot on the heels of the UK recording industry statistics for 2011 come the US figures with the Billboard / Nielsen Music Industry Report showing that digita now accounts for 50.3% of all sales in the USA, marking the first time digital has overtook physical. Another interesting statistic is that vinyl album sales grew 36% compared to 2010, selling more than any other year in the past two decades and that catalogue sales are still substantially more important than current releases - with the statistics pointing to the fact that whilst consumers are losing interest in physical product overall, when they do purchase they’re increasingly likely to choose something that they connect with on a personal level. Total music purchases were up 6.9% for the year against 2010 - the first rise since 2004. for the year. Digital sales were up 8.4% from the previous year while physical album sales declined 5%. As in the UK, Adele topped the sales chart selling more than 5.8 million copies of 21 which became the best selling digital album of all time (1.8 million). She also had the best selling digital song with “Rolling in the Deep” and most played song on the radio with the same recording. She also tops BigChampagne’s Ultimate Chart, which factors in music fans enjoy regardless of whether it was enjoyed via legitimate channels or piracy. Lady Gaga was the number one streamed artiste, although the most-streamed individual track was Nicki Minaj’s “Super Bass". Universal and Sony Music each had approximately 30% of the total album sales, Warners 19%, EMI 9.5% and independent labels approximately 10%.


BBC names top five

The BBC's Sound Of 2012 poll's final five have been announced, hopefully predicting which newcomers will have a good year in 2012. And those top five are:

1. Michael Kiwanuka
2. Frank Ocean
3. Azealia Banks
4. Skrillex
5. Niki & The Dove

UK record sales continue their downward slide

The BPI has released figures showing that despite a growth in digital sales, overall record sales in the UK continued to decline. It was another record breaking year for singles sales which were up 10%, the vast majority being sold digitally, with just one million CD singles sold in 2011 accounting for less than 1% of the singles market. Digital albums also saw significant growth, up 26.6%, though that wasn't enough to compensate for the continued slump in CD sales, with album sales overall down 5.6% to 113.2 million. The figures do not include revenues from either the performance of sound recordings (from PPL), from band’s own sales or from the new and growing streaming services.

Top Ten UK Singles Of 2011
1. Adele - Someone Like You (Beggars/XL)
2. Maroon 5 feat Christina Aguilera - Moves Like Jagger (Universal/Polydor)
3. LMFAO feat Lauren Bennett & Goonrock - Party Rock Anthem (Universal/Polydor)
4. Jessie J feat BoB - Price Tag (Universal/Lava)
5. Rihanna feat Calvin Harris - We Found Love (Universal/Mercury)
6. Pitbull feat Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer - Give Me Everything (Sony/J)
7. Bruno Mars - Grenade (Warner/Atlantic)
8. Ed Sheeran - The A Team (Warner/Atlantic)
9. Adele - Rolling In The Deep (Beggars/XL)
10. Jennifer Lopez feat Pitbull - On The Floor (Universal/Mercury)

Top Ten UK Albums Of 2011
1. Adele - 21 (Beggars/XL)
2. Michael Bublé - Christmas (Warner/Reprise)
3. Bruno Mars - Doo-Wops & Hooligans (Warner/Atlantic)
4. Adele - 19 (Beggars/XL)
5. Coldplay - Mylo Xyloto (EMI/Parlophone)
6. Rihanna - Loud (Universal/Mercury)
7. Lady Gaga - Born This Way (Universal/Polydor)
8. Jessie J - Who You Are (Universal/Lava)
9. Ed Sheeran - + (Warner/Atlantic)
10. Rihanna - Talk That Talk (Universal/Mercury)

MAMA up for sale?

It seems that beleaguered UK retailer HMV has put its live music division, in reality the MAMA Group, up for sale. It is thought AEG are amongst those interested, and that long term CEO Dean James may also consider fronting a bid.

EMI joins battle against Grooveshark

EMI has joined fellow majors Universal, Sony and Warner in suing Grooveshark. But in a slight twist, EMI Music Publishing filed a lawsuit against Grooveshark operators Escape Media claiming the digital firm is in breach of the licensing agreement reached in 2009 at the conclusion of a previous legal dispute for the non-payment of royalties and according to reports, the legal papers filed with the New York State Supreme Court claims Grooveshark "hasn't made a single royalty payment to EMI, nor provided a single accounting statement" under the existing licensing deal, and that the digital firm now owes at least $150,000 in royalties. Responding to the EMI action, the streaming platform said in a statement "This is a contract dispute that we expect to resolve".

Burkle buys AGI

US based booking agency Artist Group International (AGI) which represents the likes of Billy Joel, Metallica, Rod Stewart and Linkin Park, has been bought by Yucaipa, the equity group led by Ron Burkle which was linked to bids to buy both Warner and EMI during 2011.

Viagogo to fight on despite second court loss

Viagogo has vowed to fight on despite losing a Court of Appeal decision in the UK ordering it to hand over details of suppliers of rugby football tickets which were resold on Viagogo. In a statement, the ticket resale platform said "We are committed to vigorously defending our customer's rights and private information, therefore we will appeal today's decision" adding "In the meantime, no customer information has been shared and we are confident that no customer information will ever be shared." At the time of writing no specifics have been given of any appeal. RFU spokesperson Sophie Goldschmidt said that “placing tickets for sale on secondary ticketing sites is in direct contravention of the RFU's ticketing terms and conditions, and if the seller can be identified, they face tough sanctions including possible court action" adding "Individuals who believe they have anonymity by trading their tickets through such secondary sales sites are no longer invisible, and we will do our utmost to ensure that tickets go to genuine fans."

Adele keeps holding her first position in 2012 billboard albums

Adele's inexorable 21 sold more than 144,000 copies to claim the top spot on the first Billboard albums chart of 2012, easily outpacing Drake's Take Care, which landed at #2 with sales of nearly 72,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan. 

As it approaches the one-year anniversary of its release, 21 — which was 2011's biggest seller by a huge margin — shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, with this week's numbers, it has now sold some 5.8 million copies in the U.S., making it the best-selling album since Usher's massive Confessions, which moved 7.9 million copies in 2004. 

Young Jeezy's TM 103: Hustlerz Ambition holds strong at #3 on this week's chart, selling more than 67,000 copies in hts second week. Lady Antebellum's Own the Night is up next at #4 with sales of nearly 54,000 copies. And buoyed by the chart-topping success of single "Sexy and I Know It," LMFAO's Sorry for Party Rocking leaps from #16 all the way up to #5.

Eurosonic sets green agenda in 2012

EuroSonic Nooderslag, Europe’s most important live music showcase, is all set for a record year in Groningen in the Netherlands this year from Wednesday 11th to Saturday 14th January. The whole show kicks off this year on Wednesday 11th January at 18.00 with the European Border Breakers Awards (hosted by Jools Holland and live on NTR TV in the Netherlands) and then at 20.00 its time for The European Festival Awards – and the special recipient this year is Michael Eavis, organiser of the Glastonbury Festival who wins the Lifetime Achievement Award. Live shows in 2012 include Border Breaker Awards winners James Vincent McMorrow (IE), Anna Calvi (UK), Elektro Guzzi (AT), Boy (D) and Selah Sue (BE) along with many many others including the Medics, Animal Kids, Death Letters, Lilian Hak, Blaudzun, Baskerville, Effi, Haas, Krystl, Bombay Show Pig, LeMaitre, We Are Evergreen, Wolfendale, The Cyborgs, Pinkunoizu, Lucy Rose, Tove Stryke and Reptile Youth.

Eurosonic also features a cross sector music industry conference which is attracting more and more delegates. With a special focus on green issues in 2012, looking at 'green communications' and international standards for green events, here are highlights of some of the other panels at the conference which might be of interest to our readers:

Thursday 14.30 - 15.30 THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF MAJOR EVENTS ON LOCAL REGIONS: Do you know the full economic value of your event and how to use this information effectively? Economic impact can form a persuasive argument when dealing with local authorities, sponsors and suppliers and others. This session will look at different ways to measure the economic impact of your event and why this is becoming increasingly important. Using real case studies, the discussion will focus on practical applications you can adopt and use. With Chris Maughan (De Montfort University, Leicester, UK), Colin Rodger (T In The Park Festival, UK) and moderated by Teresa Moore (Bucks New University, UK).

Thursday 15.00 – 16.00 ACTS OF GOD – ISSUES FROM WEATHER AT FESTIVALS: With Sabine Funk (Rheinkultur/IBIT, D), Henrik Neilsen (Roskilde Festival, DK), Gary Latham (DF Concerts, UK) and moderated by Professor Chris Kemp ( Buckinghamshire New University ,UK)

Thursday 16.30 – 17.30 NEW EURPOEAN UNION SUPPORT FOR THE CULTURAL AND CREATIVE SECTORS with Ann Branch from the EU Commission, moderated by Willem van Zeeland (VPRO, NL)

Friday 12.30-13.30 LESS TOURS, LESS TICKETS? With Rob Chalice (Coda UK), Charlie Presberg (Pollstar, UK), Eric van Eerdenberg (MOJO, NL), Sebastien Vuignier (Paleo Festival, CH), Stephan Thanscheidt(FKP Scorpio, D) and moderated by Allan McGowan (UK).

Friday 13.30-14.30 GREEN FESTIVAL COMMUNICATION with Julia Gudzent (Melt! Festival D) and Carlijn Lindmulder (ID&T, NL) moderated by Holger Jan Schmidt (Rhienkultur, D)

Friday 15.00 – 16.00 THE DEBATE ABOUT DISCOUNTING TICKETS with Stewart McKie (UK) and Will Page (PRS for Music, UK) and moderated by Greg Parmley (Intellitix, UK)

Saturday 12.30 – 13.30 GREEN INTERNATIONAL STANDARDS IN EVENT MANAGEMENT WITH Rachael Saunders (Sustainable Events, UK) and moderated by Jacob Bilabel (Green Music Initiative, D)