Artists who make it big at the Grammy Awards always see a hefty boost in sales, and Adele was to be no exception. After winning no less than 6 awards in one night (including “Album Of The Year” for “21” and “Song Of The Year” for “Rolling In The Deep”), “21” managed to reach double platinum status. What’s even more interesting, Adele has become the first artist to sell 2 million copies of one album on iTunes in the US.
Adele is also the second artist to win the “Big Four” Grammy Awards in the same ceremony. She joins Christopher Cross, who achieved that feat in 1981.
This artistic and commercial success comes after many expressed concerns about Adele’s future when she became sidelined by vocal chord hemorrhaging, and had to undergo microsurgery.
As of the time of writing this, the figures made public by Columbia Records show that “21” has sold 7 million copies in the U.S., and 18 million copies worldwide.
MPlayr is one of the best ways to stay abreast of what is being played on some of the most representative music charts the world over. On this site, you can tune into the US and the UK music charts, and learn what sounds are trending there. And I mean it – the site lets you do more than just read a list of songs ranking in either territory, it actually lets you listen to them online. That can be done directly on your browser. You won’t have to download anything, and you won’t have to pay anything either.
What’s more, the site has a chart devoted to iTunes. Again – you can see what’s hot in there, and listen to it straight in your browser.
Other meritorious aspects of MPlayr include letting people look up both new and old songs and have them played on the fly, and letting users create playlists they can then share with all their friends on Facebook (the one service which is used for signing in). Continue reading →
To think that once upon a time the dream of every musician was to have his own CD on the racks of record stores all over the country… now, his aim is to have it featured on iTunes. Yet, how many stop to think of what would it take to make it happen before doing anything? How many understand how it really works? I hope the text below answers that, and gives anybody something of a direction when thinking about selling his own music through iTunes.
The first thing to realize is that you are not going to work directly with Apple – the requirements for doing that rule most people out (IE, you must have 20 albums in your catalog – that is more than bands like The Who put out in their actual time together). No, what you are going to do is to work with Apple through an aggregator such as TuneCore or CDBaby. These are companies that work with Apple in order to ensure that the content which is featured on iTunes meet its actual quality standards, and they also take care of marketing/promotional duties.
In the case of the two that have just been mentioned (TuneCore and CDBaby – they are easily the two most popular aggregators around), you retain the rights to your music, and you also retain more than 90 % of the royalties for every sale (TuneCore actually lets you retain 100 % of every transaction). Aggregators also let you sell your music on other stores and services such as Amazon MP3, Spotify, MySpace Music, Zune, Rhapsody, Nokia, Amazon On Demand and (in the vast majority of cases) you are also allowed to market your music physically, and have it sold on record stores. Continue reading →
Ask any user of iTunes what he would change about the service, and his response will most likely focus on one thing: the inability to download music that he has purchased to more than one device.
And if he gets angry as he points that out, he is entitled to feel like that. The way everything stands right now, a person who has an iPhone, an iPad and an iPod is not allowed to download music that he has purchased to more than one of these devices.
Apple is well aware of that, and has begun negotiating a deal that (if successful) will enable users to have their music on all their devices. The key here would be either letting users stream their audio (a la Pandora or Grooveshark), or letting people download songs that they have purchased once unlimitedly. Continue reading →
It took longer than it took the surviving members of The Who to record a comeback album (slight exaggeration), but on the 16th of November of this year The Beatles’ music has finally become available for purchase on the iTunes Store.
That date is anything but coincidental, of course. It was on such a date that the band’s first video clip was shown on American television. That was a good couple of months before they disembarked on American soil and hysteria broke loose.
If you visit the iTunes Store right now, you will see that the band has taken over the page completely.
This comes after years of discussions between Apple, EMI and Apple Corps (the outfit founded by The Beatles). Continue reading →
Apple Is To Let You Preview Songs On iTunes Three Times More Extensively
Nothing to complain about here, really. If you are based in the US, you will soon be able to listen to 90-second previews instead of the 30-second clips that can be sampled right now on iTunes.
This is the letter that Apple itself has sent to record labels:
“We are pleased to let you know that we are preparing to increase the length of music previews from 30 seconds to 90 seconds on the iTunes Store in the United States. We believe that giving potential customers more time to listen to your music will lead to more purchases.”
As I am sure you know, Apple has just given the iTunes store a social layer by releasing Ping, a network that is solely meant for music-related interactions. According to Steve Jobs, Ping has been created to solve the problem of discovering exactly what to listen to on iTunes.
Note that Ping is not really an independent website; it is actually part of iTunes 10. It is not a site that you sign up for, and it is not a mobile application either.
Ping lets you see what your friends have downloaded, what music they like, and which gigs they are attending. And if you follow other musicians (some celebrities are already there), you get to learn about new releases straight from them. You are also informed about any shows they are going to play.
Privacy (a big issue ever since Facebook tried to impose some big changes on users sometime last year) shouldn’t be a cause of concern – you can keep everything as public or private as you want. It is possible to create a closed circle with your ten best friends and exchange music among yourselves if that is what you want.
However, the shortcomings of Ping have already been pointed out. And in a unanimous way at that.
For starters, you will lament the absolute lack of intelligence Ping has got when it comes to recommending music to you. It just looks at the artists of the hour and recommends them to you, with little rhyme or reason. Since Ping is not an independent site but it is actually part of iTunes, you would think it would use iTunes’ “Genius” feature. Well, it doesn’t. And that was a big letdown to many. Continue reading →
The amount of services to discover (and recommend) music online has no end. If someone asked why, we could but reply “Elementary, my dear Watson” with a smirk. “There is no end to these services because today absolutely everybody can upload his songs to the WWW and make them available to just everybody. These services are vital – or do you fancy sitting for a whole week chained to your PC listening to newcomer after newcomer?”
I have already reviewed a couple of these services, and you (being the diligent reader of MusicKO that you are) already know how they work. I will simply enumerate some of the most notable (and in some cases unique) features of Eyeball.fm for you.
For starters, it is more than merely a service for recommending music – it is a true backup service since you can upload your whole iTunes library to your account and access your music from there. And when you do that you are automatically gaining access to information such as bios and song lyrics.
Integration with services like Facebook is also accounted for, so that you can get down to recommending songs with your already existing circle of friends.
Best of all – in contrast to services like Pandora and Rhapsody, Eyeball.fm is available globally. This means that someone like me (who resides in South America) can use it to the full from the word go. Continue reading →