Apr 22, 2024 3 min read

⏩ One Liners: TikTok, Ed Sheeran, Lucian Grainge + more

Davido x UnitedMasters; Music Climate Pact appointment; TikTok ban bill passed; Ed Sheeran and Madonna lawsuits; Lucian Grainge wages; DawBell co-founds PR:E; new music from Sega Bodega, Laura J Martin

⏩ One Liners: TikTok, Ed Sheeran, Lucian Grainge + more


Nigerian artist Davido has partnered with distributor and label services company UnitedMasters to launch new record label Nine+ Records. “I couldn’t be more proud to partner with the team at United Masters”, he says. “This announcement represents an exciting new chapter for developing and established artists around the world”.


UK record industry trade bodies AIM and BPI have appointed Creative Zero’s Roxy Erickson to lead the next phase of the Music Climate Pact, an initiative to reduce the carbon emissions of the music industry. “The music industry is such an important player in the fight for climate action”, she says. “Where scientists can give us the data, music can speak truth to the hearts of so many. I am honoured and excited to take up this role and plan to take a pragmatic approach to helping lay the foundations for a music industry hub for environmental impact. I look forward to speaking with the signatories and supporters about the work that has begun over the past two years and priorities moving forward. There is much collective work to be done, but every meeting gives me faith that the people who work in this industry are up for the challenge”.

The US House Of Representatives this weekend again voted through proposals to force Chinese TikTok owner ByteDance to sell the video-sharing platform or face it being banned in the US. Having already passed the proposals in a standalone bill, the sell-or-be-banned law was then also added to a bill that included various measures, including aid packages for Israel and Ukraine. It’s seen as a move to make the US Senate consider the proposals more quickly, as the aid packages need to be passed more urgently. 
A court hearing last week put the spotlight back on the allegation that Ed Sheeran ripped off Marvin Gaye’s ‘Let’s Get It On’ on his song ‘Thinking Out Loud’. Sheeran previously won a legal battle with the estate of ‘Let’s Get It On’ co-writer Ed Townsend. However, he was separately sued by a company called Structured Asset Sales, which has a stake in the ‘Let’s Get It On’ copyright. The judge overseeing that case dismissed the action in May last year, but SAS appealed. Judges in the Second Circuit Appeals Court heard arguments from both sides at last week’s session. 
Madonna is facing another lawsuit over her slack time-keeping. Already fighting legal action over the late start of one of her shows in New York last year, now Madonna is being sued in relation to shows that took place in Washington DC. A new lawsuit claims that Madonna and her promoter Live Nation breached their contract with ticket-buyers when they advertised an 8.30pm start time but Madonna didn't take to the stage until 10.30pm. “Forcing consumers to wait hours for her performance in a hot, uncomfortable arena is demonstrative of Madonna's arrogant and total disrespect for her fans”, says the new litigation. When responding to the lawsuit over the New York shows earlier this month, Madonna and Live Nation said the legal claims relating to her late start were simply not credible. 


Universal Music boss Lucian Grainge was paid around £120 million last year, according to The Times. Less than the £150 million he took home back in 2021, but still probably enough to afford a nice holiday and some shoes, or something. His actual salary was halved to around £6.5 million, in line with the company’s performance, but he also received around £80 million in shares, as well as other cash payments. 


A group of seven entertainment PR companies from around Europe - including DawBell in the UK - have launched a new network called PR:E to combine their expertise. “At DawBell, we have always been committed to pushing the boundaries of public relations and delivering exceptional results for our clients”, says DawBell GM Kate Etteridge. “We are THRILLED to have founded the PR:E network set up to be more agile and adaptable to local needs and differences, in the time of an evolving traditional PR landscape”.


Sega Bodega has released new single ‘True’. His new album ‘Dennis’ is out on Friday. 
Laura J Martin has released new single ‘Living On The Wall’ featuring Iwan Morgan. Her new album ‘Prepared’ is out on 17 May.
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