Thursday, January 20, 2011

Music Notes: Spotify Signs with Sony; New R.E.M. Single Released; Lineups Out for Coachella, Bonnaroo, SXSW, & Jazz Fest

* R.E.M. on Tuesday released "Mine Smell Like Honey" (video with lyrics above), the first single from its forthcoming album "Collapse Into Now" (which drops March 8th). You can also preorder a deluxe version of the new R.E.M. album here, which includes a video and three bonus tracks (live-in-studio versions of “Discoverer,” “Oh My Heart,” and “Alligator Aviator Autopilot Antimatter").

* The music subscription service Spotify has signed a deal with Sony for U.S. distribution, All Things D writes. Spotify, which is now operating in Europe, will have similar terms stateside that it has across the pond: "A certain number of hours per month of free streaming music, with the ability to pay for an ad-free version, or a more popular one that lets users listen on mobile devices like Apple’s iPhone."

* The Spring festival season is warming up, and a number of big events have recently announced who'll be playing. See the SXSW Music lineup (March 16th - 20th), Coachella lineup (April 15th -17th), Bonnaroo lineup (June 9th -12th: not officially released, but here's a photo of the poster), and Jazz Fest (New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival (April 29th - May 8th)

And, what would the week be without some dismal news from the record business:
* Digital music sales are slowing, the industry's trade group says. Revenues were up 6% for 2010 according to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, but in 2009 they were up 12% from the year before, and up 25% in 2008.

* Warner Music is keeping busy. The firm, one of the big four music companies, is looking to buy Britain's EMI, but has also hired Goldman Sachs to seek out potential suitors to buy it.

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