All These Years – Static-X

Did you miss Wayne Static? Yup, me too.

It’s very challenging to represent someone in a music video, who is no longer alive, but that was something that we really wanted to do and I think it came out great, These are some of Wayne’s last works, so we really wanted to make this video all about him and to continue to celebrate his life and legacy. What better way to do that than through a fun, fictional story about how Wayne was inspired to become the legend that who he became through Static-X.

says drummer Ken Jay.

Beatles for Sale? It’s spam of the day

beatles-170I’ve owned up to some of the great loves of my life in the past.

For instance, I’m a music lover and I’m very partial to board games (even during a denial-of-service attack).

Today I can also share that I like The Beatles. In particular, anything from “Rubber Soul” and later when the “Yeah yeah yeah” turned into something rather more “Yeah man. Dig it”.

I’ve simply never come across a more talented combination of musicianship and songwriting abilities – for me, you can kick The Stones, The Who, Cream and.. yes.. even MeatLoaf to the kerb, as Lennon, McCartney, Harrison and Starr are the guv’nors.

So, perhaps I was the right person to receive the following spam message about a box set of remastered Beatles CDs and mini-documentaries.

beatles-email

If you click further on the email, which has clearly been written with a Spanish-speaking audience in mind, you discover – ¡Ay, caramba! – that whoever is touting this “box set” has actually shoved every Beatles track onto one DVD.

They’ve even gone to the effort of adding a mini-documentary for each official album from “Please Please Me” to “Abbey Road”.

beatles-web

It’s beginning to sound suspiciously like these tracks and the video content might be somewhat similar to what Apple announced for its iTunes store to great fanfare late last year.

In short, if you purchase goods like this advertised to you via spam – you’re not only encouraging the spammers to flood your inbox some more, but you’re also preventing Messrs McCartney and Starr, and the families of Lennon and Harrison from receiving their rightful earnings for their musical genius.

If you like music, buy it through official channels – and support the artists who created it. Don’t feed the spammers.

Source: SophosLabs

Facebook to launch music service on September 22

TechSpot: Facebook plans to launch a music service on September 22, which happens to coincide with the company’s F8 conference. The news comes via CNBC’s twitter feed which reported the headline earlier today.

A quick blurb on CNBC’s website also mentions the pending music service launch, suggesting that Facebook won’t actually host the music, but will partner with a provider to offer the service.

There isn’t much more to go on at the moment, but this isn’t the first time we’ve heard such rumors. Last month, Facebook announced a video calling feature powered by Skype. Software developer Jeff Ross panned through the program’s code and found references to an app called Facebook Vibes which connects with a music download dialog. Ross posted the following statement on his blog.

“The video chat plugin, called peep, is what is downloaded now. At some point in the future they seem to be prepared to download another app though, called Facebook Vibes. I searched around to see what this is all about, and it seems that this is an unannounced feature that has yet to be released. The vibes app connects with a music download dialog in the page though, so I’m guessing that with this release we are seeing the seeds for Facebook’s upcoming music offering.”

In May, we heard rumors that Facebook was partnering with Spotify, a DRM-based streaming service that allows users to instantly listen to millions of songs from several major and independent record labels. Spotify launched in select European countries in October 2008 but only opened their doors to US users on July 14, 2011.

Pending a deal, Facebook is just another name on the growing list of companies looking to offer streaming music to users. Last week RIM announced BBM Music, a streaming music service for BlackBerry users. The service integrates with BlackBerry Messenger, the company’s popular messaging service, and gives users access to “millions of songs” from all four major music labels.

MySpace Introduces “Hijacks” With the Black Eyed Peas

The Black Eyed Peas have taken over MySpace in an effort to improve its social entertainment offerings.

Hijacks is a project that involves allowing celebrities — like the aforementioned Peas — to “take over” MySpace. Fans will have the opportunity to learn more about these celebrities’ particular interests, while also receiving access to new products and exclusive content.

So in the case of the Black Eyed Peas’s MySpace Hijack, fans can do things like play a new 8-bit game, view the band’s featured playlist and learn more about chanteuse Fergie’s love of Italian fashion house Emilio Pucci. Non-MySpace users will be able to view some of the content from the hijack, but actual MySpace membership is necessary to receive access to items like a limited edition Black Eyed Peas badge. This promotion is taking place just a little more than a week after the Black Eyed Peas released their last disc, The Beginning.

Next week, Jack Black will take over with his own hijack for three days, shortly before his next film, Gulliver’s Travels, hits theaters. More as-yet-unannounced celebrities and musicians will be participating in the program in 2011.

MySpace SVP Sam Wick says Hijack is designed to use the “power of celebrities” — especially global ones — to introduce the social network’s audience to a deeper content experience. He views it as a chance for users to check out the site’s new content hubs and topic pages.

“The way we think about it is, in essence, as the virtual equivalent of Saturday Night Live,” Wick says, pointing out that celebrities typically do such programs in order to promote a project. “But it’s really a personification of who they are — and we look at it in the same way. So the artist is really deeply involved in the programming aspects of Hijack itself.”

The program’s being promoted both on MySpace and off — for instance, anyone visiting the Black Eyed Peas Facebook Page will view a tab informing them about Hijack. Wick says a number of celebrities, like Chris Brown, have tweeted out information as well.

Hijack has launched just a little more than a month after MySpace first announced plans for a completely overhauled design, with the intention of being “the leading entertainment destination that is socially powered by the passions of fans and curators.”

MySpaceBEP

Winamp Is Back With Powerful Android Media Player

winamp_sticker_design03One of the greatest setbacks of the Android platform has been the absence of a killer media player, as its native media player is simply lacking. To date, DoubleTwist has been the best option, but Winamp for Android is a powerful new alternative.

Before the turn of the century (a.k.a. the Wild West of file sharing), Winamp reigned supreme for MP3 playback on Windows. Now I haven’t used a Winamp product since I learned about foobar2000 back in 2002, but it’s often nice to see the resurgence of a familiar face in tech.

Despite all its fancy features, Winamp is a winner because it’s just a very solid audio player. This isn’t to say that the features aren’t nice. Winamp for Android supports wireless desktop syncing (via Winamp 5.6 for PC), so you can simply beam tracks to your device over Wi-Fi. It also has Last.fm scrobbling support and particularly good play queue management.

But don’t take my word for it, check out the free download yourself by scanning the QR code below:

Scan-this-QR-code-to-Download-Winamp-for-Android

The Beatles are Onboard But Why are there Still Musicians like Kid Rock and AC/DC holding out on iTunes?

the_beatles3PC Magazine: The Beatles have finally given iTunes a ticket to ride, allowing their iconic music to be added to Apple’s catalog. But while the Fab Four might be the most notable iTunes holdout, they certainly aren’t the last. A dwindling number of artists are still resistant to joining Apple’s music download service.
Searches on iTunes for AC/DC, Kid Rock, Tool, Garth Brooks, and Def Leppard will return disappointing results: karaoke and cover tracks, not material from the artists themselves. Reasons for non-compliance with Apple vary.
AC/DC and Apple have an ideological agreement; the Australian band protests Apple’s policy that offers albums piecemeal.
“We don’t make singles, we make albums,” the band’s guitarist Angus Young said in a Telegraph article. “If we were on iTunes, we know a certain percentage of people would only download two or three songs from the album – and we don’t think that represents us musically.”
Country singer Garth Brooks has similar qualms with individual song downloads. Brooks has reportedly met with Apple on multiple occasions to refute the policy.
“They truly think that they’re saving music,” the singer said in a 2009 USA Today report. “I looked at them right across the table with all the love in the world and told them they were killing it. Until we get variable pricing, until we get album-only downloads, then they are not a true retailer for my stuff, and you won’t see my stuff on there.”
Multiple sources said that with meandering anthems that overlap into one another, ambient rock band Tool has the same misgivings about iTunes.
But Kid Rock’s reservations represent another faction. Rather than a philosophical disagreement, the artist believes that the royalties Apple rewards to artists are too low. He told the BBC in 2008 that “iTunes takes the money, the record company takes the money, and they don’t give it to the artist.”
Bob Seger and Kid Rock share the same management, which could explain why Seger, who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004, can’t be found on iTunes either.
In 2007, Kid Rock’s sixth album “Rock ‘n’ Roll Jesus,” debuted at number one on the Billboard top 200 chart, despite its absence from iTunes. But that was a different era, when holdouts still included big names like Radiohead.
In 2007, Radiohead made its album “In Rainbows” available on the Web; allowing fans to name their price. In 2008, Radiohead made its full catalogue available on iTunes, according to Billboard..
Now the Beatles have joined the iTunes world, too. “In 1964, the band that changed everything came to America. Now they’re on iTunes,” said a note on Apple’s homepage.

Lady Gaga Hits 1 Billion Views on YouTube

ladygaga

Lady Gaga took to Twitter this morning to announce that her YouTube videos have hit the lofty milestone of 1 billion total views. The musician is the first to reach such a goal, but Justin Bieber is trailing close behind with 962,726,797 total video views.

Sources were predicting this outcome a few weeks ago, with Lady Gaga reaching 1 billion YouTube views around October 20, and Bieber hitting the mark on November 1.

Nevertheless, Bieber continues to hold court as the King of YouTube with the most-viewed video of all time — his song “Baby” has 365,428,461 views.

My Personal Note: I’m not a fan of Lady Gaga or Justin Beiber, I Highly Dislike both of them!

Source: Mashable

Gene Simmons Websites Taken Down By Hackers

Some people didn’t like his comments about downloading…

Two of Gene Simmons’ official sites were shut down after hacker attacks by a group called Anonymous, associated with the 4chan.org forum. The attacks were in response to comments by Simmons about how the music industry should have been tougher with illegal downloaders.

Both SimmonsRecords.com and GeneSimmons.com were taken offline briefly due to the attacks.

Simmons had made the comment, “The music industry was asleep at the wheel, and didn’t have the balls to sue every fresh-faced, freckle-faced college kid who downloaded material. And so now we’re left with hundreds of thousands of people without jobs. There’s no industry.”

How much do musicians make from online music sales?

Short answer: an infinitesimally small amount.

If you have any sympathy for musicians you’ll buy their CDs from their web sites or at their performances. That’s pretty much the conclusion you’ll draw from a great attempt at quantifying musicians’ pay rates in the online music business(es) by David McCandless of InformationIsBeautiful.net.

McCandless tried to determine how many songs or CDs a musician would need to sell in various ways to make the U.S. minimum wage ($1,600 per month). It was a tough project. He wrote: “As ever, this was incredibly difficult to research. Industry figures are hard to get hold of.”

The musician’s best deal: press and sell the CDs yourself (143 per month).

Second best deal: sell them on eBay (155 per month).

Worst deal: Spotify stream (4,540,020 per month).

Obviously Spotify makes the music available globally and selling CD’s from your own web site involves much less exposure. But four million a month?

McCandless acknowledges that his numbers are crude, but they are certainly an indication of what musicians face. It’s a good data point in the debate about piracy and the efforts of the Pirate Party to give creators less and consumers more.

Also, it’s another indication of why the successful working musician’s business model has always boiled down to: “work a lot of weddings and don’t quit the day job.”

McCandless blog here: “How Much Do Music Artists Earn Online?”

MySpace Upgrades Your Social Calendar

myspace If you’re one of those people who scribbles your plans for a given week on the back of the junk mail in your purse (totally not me…), then you could probably benefit from MySpace’s new platform.

Today, MySpace continues on its quest to distinguish itself as a place for entertainment and socializing with the addition of what is essentially a calendar that combines your events, your friends’ events, concerts and shindigs put on by your favorite artists and even events from your Facebook account. You can also buy concert tix from band pages and pages of other entertainers.

While the service itself could be a source of revenue for the company — advertisers can now buy sponsored event space inside the calendar — we’re not sure how much utility it will add for users.

Although MySpace does have a wide selection of events — nearly one million listings for 2010 — and is, in my opinion, the best place to check out bands, a tricked-out calendar just seems like another addition to an already crowded site.

What do you think? Will you use this service to get your life in order? Or will you stick to scrawling stuff on junk mail?