Kraftwerk Loses 20-year Copyright Battle Over 2-second Sample
To the surprise of probably no one, Germany has some of the most rigid copyright laws in Europe. So much so that Kraftwerk spent two decades trying to win a copyright lawsuit over sampling artist Moses Pelham’s use of a two-second sample of a Kraftwerk track. After years of going back and forth in court, and rescinding an original ruling, the German electronic group lost the lawsuit, with the judge’s final say being that the impact of Kraftwerk did not outweigh the sampler’s artistic freedom, and that ruling in favor of Kraftwerk over the 2-second ample would “practically exclude the creation of pieces of music on a particular style.” German sampling artists, you just keep doing your thing.
The National Announce New Project with Bon Iver and Others
On May 20th, the National released the collaborative album Day of the Dead. The 59-track Grateful Dead tribute album took the group 5 years to put together and was crafted with the mindset to not rush it, get together with artists when the groove is right, and let them cover whatever Dead track they wanted. Riding the wave of the endeavor’s strange and joyous spirit, the National has announced their next project: an Indie-ish supergroup with Bon Iver, internationally renowned pianists Katia and Marielle Labeque, and Grammy-winning sextet Eighth Blackbird. The supergroup only has one show scheduled so far (and it’s in Paris), but a collaboration like this surely cannot be restricted to a single performance.
The Strokes Open a Pop-up Record Store and Coffee House Ahead of New EP Release
The Strokes have a new EP coming out on Friday, and they’ve set up a week-long pop-up store in New York’s Lower East Side in anticipation. Billed as a record store, Installation, plus espresso bar, the space is the prime place to ponder the band’s back catalog, buy some vinyl and limited edition t-shirts, or just order a macchiato and sit in the screening area, and let the band’s videos and live performances inundate you. The pop-up store’s climax comes Friday with a midnight release party and performance.
24 Hour Left to Fund ACL Doc Kickstarter
The Kickstarter campaign for the Austin City Limits documentary A Song for You is in the home stretch, coming to an end at 9:01 tomorrow morning. So far, the Kickstarter has raised about $10,000 over its $125,000 goal, but still has a wealth of rare memorabilia for fans and supporters who may want to jump on the chance to have access to every remaining ACL taping for the rest of 2016 or own a rare or one-of-a-kind autographed ACL poster from say…Iggy Pop? Modest Mouse? Guided By Voices? The documentary premiered in a rudimentary version at this year’s SXSW festival, but the Kickstarter’s main purpose is to secure rights to the 70 or so songs used throughout the documentary, finish out the documentary with more archival footage, and to aid with distribution. You can find a link to the Kickstarter on our website. Just click “SoundCheck” in the features section.
MOBY On Porcelain: A Memoir
MOBY’s memoir Porcelain documents his life from roughly 1989-1999; basically the struggle of the decade leading-up to the release of his groundbreaking album Play. To summarize the memoir in his own words, MOBY said “I start out as a sober Christian in a tiny loft in an abandoned factory, and I end the book in a very different place…I’m just a clueless and panicked human being trying to make sense of the strange worlds in which I found myself…I tried to be as honest as I could.” Porcelain: A Memoir comes out on June 17th, and MOBY will be doing a Q&A and signing at Book People on June 19th.
Monday a Day of Declarations
Yesterday was a day of declarations in the name of music influence. Minnesota governor Mark Dayton declared May 23rd Beyonce Day, citing her influence on young women and girls through the use of positive messages in her music. A couple of states over, the mayor of Detroit declared this entire week Detroit Techno Week. The declaration coincides with this year’s annual Movement festival, a 3-day techno music affair, and was inspired by the city’s place as a magnet for music lovers and recognition as the birthplace of the techno genre. Alright President Obama, just throwing it out there, annual National Prince Day?
David Byrne to Bring Joan of Arc to the Stage
Former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne has revealed his next project: an off-Broadway production of the life of Joan of Arc. Though the ending of the play is obvious, Byrne says he’s inspired to do the project simply because he feels Joan of Arc’s story needs a large-scale production, and it hasn’t really been done. Byrne says he’s written the show’s music, and two-time Tony nominee Alex Timbers, who collaborated with Byrne on his stage-production of Here Lies Love back in 2013, is set to direct. Now the show just needs a name.
Former Megadeth Drummer Dies On-Stage
Nick Menza, former drummer for metal band Megadeth, died Saturday night on stage in the middle of a performance with his current band OHM. The group was in the middle of their third song when Menza suffered a massive heart attack and collapsed on stage, and was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital. Menza was 51.
Adele to become Highest Paid British and Female Recording Artist of All Time?
Is Adele about to make the biggest record deal in both British and female artist history? Seems that way. Since her contract with label XL expired, Sony has reportedly offered Adele a contract equivalent to roughly 123,000,000 US Dollars, which would give Sony the exclusive rights to release her music around the world. It would also put Adele in front of Robbie Williams and Whitney Houston, who hold the titles of highest paid British Artist and female artist of all time respectively. Sony claims they’ve secured the deal, but so far, Adele’s reps say they have no comment.
Punk London Proves People Still Don’t Get Punk
London is planning a 40th celebration of the influence and significance of punk music to its culture with Punk London later this year. The event is suuported by the Museum of London, the British Library, and even the Queen herself, including the sanctioning of a house formerly lived and recorded in by members of the Sex Pistols as a historic site. All of this to the chagrin of many who feel like the celebration marks an arbitrary anniversary being capitalized on by those who either came into the punk game after the genre was already popular or condemned the genre altogether in its heyday. Most notably Jon Corre, the son of former Sex Pistols manager Malcolm McLaren, plans to burn his collection of punk memorabilia in righteous protest on November 26th, the 40th anniversary of the Sex Pistols debut “Anarchy in the U.K..” John Lydon, formerly known as Johnny Rotten, has since spoken out, quite poignantly, against Corre, saying, “If you’re going to destroy 5 million pounds worth of anything, isn’t it better to sell it and give the money to charity?” Followed by some colorful language and opinions…while also adding that the only thing Punk London makes him nostalgic for is the continuing phenomenon that people don’t get punk.
John Berry Passes Away at 52
John Berry, one of the founding members of the Beastie Boys passed away this morning after a recent decline in mental health due to frontal lobe dementia. John Berry was part of the group as a four-piece , and is credited with naming the group the Beastie Boys, but left the band after the release of their first EP, Polly Wog Stew, being replaced by Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz. The Beastie Boys mentioned Berry’s contributions in their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction speech in 2012. Berry was 52.
Clear the Way for the Prophets of Rage
Two days ago Rage Against the Machine launched a cryptic new website with the web address prophetsofrage.com, the name of a song by rap group Public Enemy, while posters with the website’s image started popping-up all over L.A.. At the same time Public Enemy’s Chuck D seemed to be in on it, posting live videos of Rage Against the Machine. Around midnight last night, it was announced that Prophets of Rage is a supergroup with Chuck D, Cypress Hill’s B-Real, and all members of Rage Against the Machine…except vocalist Zack de la Rocha. The group will perform songs by all three groups, and makes their debut at the Hollywood Paladium on June 3rd.
PRINCE Act Set Aside Until Next Year
Minnesota’s PRINCE Act, introduced to the State’s House of Representatives a couple of weeks ago, has been set aside for the time being. The Act sought to protect a deceased person’s name, image, signature, music, etc. from being used for commercial purposes for 50 years following the person’s death. The Act would also would also work retroactively, covering anyone who’s died in the last half-century. The bill has been set aside after the House found that the bill was pushed forward a bit too quickly and may end-up having a lot of unintended consequences. Rep. Joe Hoppe, who introduced the bill, says he plans to re-work the bill and introduce a new one next year.
Living On Soul Film Features Daptone’s Records, Charles Bradley, and Others
Daptone’s Records three-night residency at the historic Apollo Theater back in December 2014 is being stitched together with interviews and other documentary elements and released as the new movie Living on Soul. The documentary features the history of Daptone’s Records, with performances by Charles Bradley, Antibalas, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, and every other act from the label’s three-night residency. The film is being funded on Kickstarter, where rewards range from tickets to the film’s world premiere to signed Daptone LPs to production credits on the film. You can watch the trailer for the film and find a link to the Kickstarter on our website. Just click on Soundcheck in the features menu.