Oakland, CA — Things are constantly changing in the music industry landscape and it’s important to stay on top of trends and news updates, especially as an independent artist. We’ve got you covered with a weekly recap of the top stories you need to know.
Drake Out of YMCMB Deal
After years of being stuck in his YMCMB deal, Drake is finally free! He will still be under Republic Records, but from here on out his label will be listed as Frozen Moments/Republic instead of YMCMB/Republic. Drake hinted at the cutting of ties on his last album “Scorpion” with the lyrics, “soon as this album drop I’m out of the deal."
Spotify Demands Refunds from Publishers and Writers, Claims They Overpaid Royalties
According to a statement made to Music Business Worldwide by a Spotify representative, Spotify overpaid most publishers in 2018. Spotify claims they’re owed millions from royalty payments made to many songwriters and publishers, and they want their bandz back. Apparently, they aren’t seeking payment immediately... let’s see how this one plays out.
Labels and Artists Expected to Lose Up to $300M to Fake Streams
According to new reports from Rolling Stone, labels and artists will lose about $300 million in “potential revenue” to fake streaming. Hopeless Records founder Louis Posen recalls peeping suspicious activity after a song that the label released received 35,000 streams a day for three straight days back-to-back. Many in the music industry are concerned with streams potentially coming from fake users/bots, as it's becoming a growing problem.
“Old Town Road” Producer Young Kio Signs Pub Deal with UMPG
Producer Young Kio, who was responsible for producing the hit single “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X has decided to sign a deal with Universal Music Publishing Group. The producer uploaded a picture to Instagram posted up with UMPG VP Walter Jones, widely known producer Cash Money AP, Def Jam EVP Steven Victor, and attorney Jess Rosen.
Tupac Estate and Others Suing UMG over Lost Masters in 2008 Fire
Last Friday a lawsuit was filed against Universal Music Group on behalf of Tupac Shakur over a 2008 fire that destroyed about 500,000 master recordings located in the company’s archive vaults. Pac’s estate is hoping to receive half of any settlement cash and insurance payments collected by UMG. UMG’s insurance claims and legal proceedings are valued at $150 million according to the lawsuit. The complaint states, “UMG did not share any of its recoveries with Plaintiffs, the artists whose life works were destroyed in the fire...Plaintiffs are entitled to 50% of those proceeds and payments.”