TODAY'S TOP STORY: Do you remember when streaming services streamed and distribution companies distributed? They were simpler easier times, right? No, not at all, you sad old luddite, get everything in one place, I reckon. Pick a streaming service, upload your tracks, have them distribute your music, use them for all your stats, talk to your fans, monetise your fanbase, plan for your future, maybe they'll even give you a hat. By which, I mean to say, SoundCloud has added music distribution services to its Pro platform... [READ MORE]
CMU Insights is our training and consultancy business providing training courses, conference sessions and research reports for music companies.
Monday evenings in Mar 2019
These three seminars provide an overview of how to build a fanbase for new artists and new music, reviewing key tools and tactics, and explaining how music marketing is evolving. [READ MORE]
Wednesday 8 - Friday 10 May 2019
This year's CMU+TGE conferences put the spotlight on music education, digital dollars and music marketing, and are packed with research, case studies, interviews and debates. [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES SoundCloud adds distribution to other streaming services to Pro offering
DEALS Warner's Atlantic allies with hip hop management firm R Baron Group
LABELS & PUBLISHERS AIM announces Ninja Tune boss as new Chair
DIGITAL & D2F SERVICES YouTube updates community guidelines, though copyright rules remain unchanged
MEDIA Greatest Hits Radio teams up with Now for a retro chart show
ARTIST NEWS Now out of jail, 21 Savage speaks about his British accent and recent incarceration
GIGS & FESTIVALS LoveMusicHateRacism announces new Beautiful Resistance campaign
AND FINALLY... Foals' fill-in bassist is Everything Everything you'd expect
Check out all the latest job opportunities with CMU Jobs. To advertise your job opportunities here email or call 020 7099 9060.
Leland Music, leading independent music supervision agency, is looking for a Music Researcher to join the London team.

For more information and to apply click here.
TEG Live has an exciting opportunity available for a pro-active, entrepreneurial and highly motivated Tour Accountant to join its team. Reporting to the Finance Manager, this busy role will see you preparing the accounts for international artists, touring in Australia, NZ and Asia.

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Secretly Group is looking for a motivated, ambitious and enthusiastic Project Manager to join its London team. 2-4 years of music industry experience are essential.

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SJM Concerts is seeking a Marketing Assistant to work as part of our busy marketing team to maximise exposure of events promoted by the company.

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SJM Concerts is seeking an organised, enthusiastic and conscientious all-rounder with great attention to detail and willing to help with anything and everything the busy ticketing department throws their way.

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Raymond Gubbay Ltd (RGL) has grown significantly in recent years with the expansion of promoting illuminated trails in venues including Kew Gardens, Blenheim Palace, and ZSL London Zoo. A permanent role has been created within the Illuminated Trails department which will be central to supporting the delivery of this growth.

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Proper Music Distribution is recruiting for a Sales Ledger Assistant to join its dedicated Finance team at its new HQ in Dartford, Kent. The ideal candidate will have relative experience in a similar role, experience of working with SAGE 200 and a proactive and positive approach to work.

For more information and to apply click here.
AWAL is seeking a Head Of International Marketing, to be responsible for managing AWAL's international marketing teams who create and deliver successful, innovative and global marketing campaigns for a growing roster of artist and label clients.

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Vision Nine Group is seeking to recruit a Senior Festivals Manager to take a leading role in the Event Management team working across our award-winning portfolio of festivals and events.

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SoundCloud adds distribution to other streaming services to Pro offering
Do you remember when streaming services streamed and distribution companies distributed? They were simpler easier times, right? No, not at all, you sad old luddite, get everything in one place, I reckon. Pick a streaming service, upload your tracks, have them distribute your music, use them for all your stats, talk to your fans, monetise your fanbase, plan for your future, maybe they'll even give you a hat. By which, I mean to say, SoundCloud has added music distribution services to its Pro platform.

Which, according to SoundCloud itself, means that - moving forward - "creators monetising original music on SoundCloud can seamlessly add distribution into all major music services including Amazon Music, Apple Music, Instagram, Spotify, Tencent, YouTube Music and more - all directly from their SoundCloud account".

SoundCloud has always been different to the other audio streaming services, of course, in that it allows any artist or audio creator to directly pump their tracks into its system. That was a result of the company starting off with a different business model to the likes of Spotify and Apple Music, before subsequently moving into the more conventional streaming space by signing licensing deals with the record labels and music distributors.

Those deals required SoundCloud to start monetising the audio on its platform through ad sales and later subscriptions. That monetisation has been slowly extended to those creators who still directly upload their content into the SoundCloud system - rather than making it available via a label or distributor - with all music creators with a SoundCloud Pro account becoming eligible for monetisation as of last October.

Although that move was in part about allowing DIY creators to also benefit from the monetisation side of SoundCloud, it also arguably made SoundCloud Pro a more attractive proposition. The Pro set up was at the heart of that original business model, whereby creators pay a monthly fee to host more content on the platform and access more data.

Except, of course, because streaming royalties from any one platform tend to be nominal until you are getting significant numbers of streams, upgrading to Pro to access monetisation wouldn't immediately make financial sense for many creators, unless the other benefits were also attractive. Being able to automatically distribute your music to a plethora of other streaming platforms is a significant extra benefit.

Though it's interesting that, by boosting the SoundCloud Pro side of the business, arguably the digital firm is removing one of the USPs of its punter-facing subscription service SoundCloud Go. When SoundCloud first launched its rather-late-to-the-party subscription offer, one of the company's big brags was that - because of all the user-uploading over the years - it had a much bigger catalogue of music than its competitors.

By expanding its creator services so that that audio can now be passed on to other streaming platforms, the consumer-facing product will no longer have that brag.

Though it's debatable how good a brag it ever really was. Not least because, in more recent years, most savvy new bands - ie the ones you're most likely to want to listen to - would be getting their music into Spotify and Apple Music - via a DIY distributor like CD Baby, Ditto, Tunecore or Distrokid - at the same time they were uploading it into their SoundCloud account.

By adding distribution services, SoundCloud is now basically going into competition with those DIY distributors. Though more attention will likely be given to the impact SoundCloud's latest move might have on Spotify and its plans to expand the services it offers creators.

Spotify, of course, is developing a direct-upload tool, allowing artists to directly upload music into its system SoundCloud-style. And, via an alliance with Distrokid, its plan is also to enable artists to use that direct-upload tool to distribute tracks to other streaming services.

SoundCloud will work with music distributor FUGA to offer distribution services to its creators. Those services will come at no extra cost to SoundCloud Pro customers and creators will get 100% of any royalties paid by the other platforms.

Announcing all these distribution fun times, SoundCloud boss Kerry Trainor said: "Only SoundCloud empowers creators with a unified platform to instantly upload and share, connect with fans in real-time and get paid for their work everywhere - both on SoundCloud and across other leading music services. Creators can now spend less time and money jumping between different tools, and more time making music, connecting with fans and growing their careers first on SoundCloud".


Warner's Atlantic allies with hip hop management firm R Baron Group
Warner Music's Atlantic Records in the US has announced an alliance with artist management firm the R Baron Group that will see the two companies launch a new label together to be known as The Machine Works.

The management firm, founded by TK Kimbro and Jeremiah Aubert, has an existing relationship with Atlantic via one of its management clients, Shoreline Mafia. The first signings to the new label also come from the R Baron Group management roster, they being LA-based AzChike and 1TakeJay.

Announcing the deal, Atlantic COO Julie Greenwald said: "We're THRILLED to be taking our relationship with TK, Picaso and the R Baron team to a new level with the launch of The Machine Works. The driving force behind a phenomenal new wave of artists that has transformed the LA hip hop landscape, they're a fantastic addition to the Atlantic family".

Commenting from the other side of the deal, Kimbro added: "After the success of Shoreline Mafia and working hand and hand with Atlantic Records we knew this was where we wanted to build our label and incubator". He then added, somewhat boldly, "Atlantic is truly the only major label committed to breaking and cultivating new artists".


AIM announces Ninja Tune boss as new Chair
The UK's Association Of Independent Music has a new Chair in the form of Peter Quicke, who is MD of Ninja Tune. He takes over from Transgressive's Tim Dellow, who was in the Chair role for two years. The AIM membership elect the trade body's board at its AGM each autumn, and then the board elects the Chair.

Confirming Quicke's appointment, AIM CEO Paul Pacifico said: "On behalf of the AIM board I am delighted to announce the appointment of Peter Quicke as our new Chair. We would like to extend our warmest thanks to our outgoing Chair Tim Dellow, who has done an amazing job ... while welcoming Peter who will bring energy, insight and a keen understanding of the challenges facing the independent music community to his new role".

Dellow was the first Chair appointed under the current system and took on the role for two years to help with the transition after Pacifico took over from Alison Wenham in the top executive role. He said: "I'm immensely proud of what has been achieved by the AIM team in my tenure as its first elected Chair".

On that management transition, he added: "Paul has worked diligently to completely rejuvenate the organisation, bringing in an exuberant, youthful team, and elevating and empowering committed employees dedicated to repositioning the independent sector as a place for creative entrepreneurs, adding a real value to our artists and their careers, whilst building on the core ethics and responsibilities that the sector should reflect".

On his successor, he then concluded: "Peter is an incredible choice of Chair, who I know will bring his wealth of experience, keen ethical approach and distinct and proactive leadership to the position".


YouTube updates community guidelines, though copyright rules remain unchanged
YouTube has made some changes to its community guidelines, which set out rules that creators uploading videos to the platform must follow and the penalties if they do not.

The biggest change is that, as of later this month, YouTube will add an extra warning into the process that kicks off whenever people upload content that breaks the rules. That process is a three strikes system, with the penalties for rule breaking increasing with each offence, ultimately resulting in whole channels being deleted.

The extra warning will basically provide a one-time-only free pass for YouTube creators who break the rules for the first time. The offending content will be removed, but no other sanctions will occur. The Google site says this extra warning is being added basically as an educational tool, the hope being that as soon as that warning appears on an account, the creator will make it their business to learn the dos and don'ts of publishing on YouTube. Once that free pass warning has been used up, the three-strikes system begins.

The community guidelines cover things like posting violent, hateful or threatening content, or impersonating another channel, but do not include copyright violations. A separate though similar system applies to when YouTubers post videos containing other people's content - including unlicensed music - which is linked in to the platform's Content ID system. The rules and penalties around copyright violations remain unchanged.


Greatest Hits Radio teams up with Now for a retro chart show
You know what the problem is with chart shows on the radio these days? That no one knows they still exist? No, not that. That no one cares about the chart anymore? No, not that either. The real problem is that official music charts - keen as they are to track the music with the most sales and streams in any one week - are full of new music.

Yeah new music. Fuck new music. I want to listen to the music that had the most sales and streams in 1996. Actually, I don't. Though a chart of the most streamed music in 1996 would be interesting I guess. But if the thought of a chart show counting down the most popular tracks from a year gone by sounds like a good thing to you, then good news!

Bauer's recently launched retro pop station Greatest Hits Radio has teamed up with Sony and Universal's 'Now That's What I Call Music' brand for a new weekly chart show that will countdown the hits from some year in the 1970s, 1980s or 1990s. You know, just for laughs. The show will go out in the classic Sunday tea time chart show slot and will be hosted by top 40 countdowner of old Mark Goodier.

Says Greatest Hits Radio Content Director Andy Ashton: "Our listeners love hearing music from their formative years and for many the 'Now' compilations mirror fond memories of good times old and new. Featuring hits throughout the decades of 'Now's reign, this chart countdown will be a fun nostalgic weekend trip for listeners".

Adds Peter Duckworth of Now! Music: "'Now' albums have been charting people's musical lives for over three and a half decades. The new 'Now That's What I Call A Chart Show' on Greatest Hits Radio will be a wonderful opportunity for music fans to hear the hits from 'Now's younger years".

How very very wonderful. It all starts on 3 Mar.


CMU:DIY: Industry Take Over All-Dayer returns
Don't forget, Urban Development's Industry Take Over All-Dayer is taking place this weekend, on Saturday 23 Feb, at Kings Place in London.

CMU:DIY and Urban Development regularly co-host the Industry Take Over Seminars throughout the year in London, of course. But the ITO All-Dayer takes everything to a whole new level, with panels, workshops, sessions and one-on-one advice surgeries.

CMU:DIY will be there too, presenting two sessions, including one in partnership with the Featured Artists Coalition.

Elsewhere, there will be practical workshops from UK Music, MMF, PPL, PRS and AIM, while providing one-to-one advice will be the likes of Adele White (Island Records), Davina Merchant (Downtown Music), Dan Owusu (BMG), Jack Duckworth (2-Tone Entertainment/Warner Bros), Joel Borquaye (Radio 1 & 1Xtra) and Riyad Felix (Since 93/Sony Music).

More info and tickets are available at

Now out of jail, 21 Savage speaks about his British accent and recent incarceration
Rapper 21 Savage has spoken to the New York Times about his recent incarceration that resulted from America's Immigration & Customs Enforcement agency declaring that the rapper was an "unlawfully present United Kingdom national" residing in the US illegally.

That 21 Savage - strongly linked to the Atlantic hip hop scene - was in fact British surprised many people. As his legal reps hit out at ICE and attempted to secure their client's release from jail, it was confirmed that the rapper was indeed born in the UK. He had lived in the US since he was aged seven, initially legally. He explained that he had lost his legal status aged twelve through no fault of his own. In 2017, he applied for a visa to ensure that he was fully entitled to stay in the country, which is yet to be granted.

It was in part because of those ongoing efforts to secure a visa that the rapper's team criticised ICE's decision to take action at this time. Lawyers managed to get him released on bail last week, meaning he is out of jail while his case continues to go through the motions.

Asked in the NYT piece about what it was like moving to the US as a child, the rapper said: "Everything was like, bigger. I come from the poor side of London. My grandma's house is real skinny. So when we first moved here, we was living in the hood still, but it was, like, way bigger. The toilet size, the bathroom size, it was just different. But I fell in love with it. It's all I know".

He then talks about having a British accent as a child, something he remembers because "on my first day of school [in the US] they was making fun of me, so I beat somebody up, and they was calling me 'taekwondo kid'. My mama whupped me, she made me stay in the house. So I know I had an accent, but I been here 20 years - I don't know what happened to it".

Asked about his recent experiences and the impact of his incarceration, he went on: "It really wasn't jail, it was the possibility of me not being able to live in this country no more that I've been living in my whole life. All that just going through your head, like, 'Damn, I love my house, I ain't gonna be able to go in my house no more? I ain't gonna be able to go to my favourite restaurant that I been going to for 20 years straight?'".

"That's the most important thing", he added. "If you tell me, 'I'll give you 20 million to go stay somewhere you ain't never stayed', I'd rather be broke. I'll sit in jail to fight to live where I've been living my whole life".

You can read the full interview here.


LoveMusicHateRacism announces new Beautiful Resistance campaign
LoveMusicHateRacism has announced a new campaign that will centre on a series of events taking place over two weeks next month. Under the banner Beautiful Resistance, the campaign will kick off on International Women's Day on 8 Mar and also include a special event on the UN's Anti-Racism Day on 16 Mar.

The campaign is being led by Paul Samuels of Atlantic Records, Ellie Giles of Step Music Management and long-time campaigner Zak Cochrane, and enjoys support from numerous artists and music companies.

The three campaign organisers say in a statement: "Since the advent of Rock Against Racism, our challenges have morphed. We now have to contend with not only far right intimidation and propaganda, but also with a growing trend for divisive and hateful language. None of this is OK with most of us, but we have to shout just as loudly with a positive alternative".

"Gathering the strength of music and the music industry, we can help to change the lives - and outlooks - of so many people across the country and beyond", they go on, "Voices of inspiration are vital to kids growing up and the response to our industry reach out so far has been so incredibly well received. We're very excited at the potential for true, transformative change through our 'Beautiful Resistance' campaign and we welcome anyone who shares our vision of a world free of prejudice to join us and get in touch via our website".

That website is


Foals' fill-in bassist is Everything Everything you'd expect
Foals are back this year, we know that, with two new albums and a new tour. But those of you paying special attention last year may remember that bass player Walter Gervers left the band last January. So what's happening there then?

Worry not, Jeremy Pritchard off of Everything Everything is stepping in. Said Foals in an Instagram post yesterday: "While our friends Everything Everything are on a break before making new music, they have kindly loaned us their bass player Jeremy Pritchard, who will be touring with us this year".

You know, a couple of years back Pritchard gallantly stepped in when we suddenly had a last-minute artist-sized gap on a panel at The Great Escape. It turned out to be a really great panel. So, I'm pretty sure this tour is going to work out fine.


ANDY MALT | Editor
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