Hard News by Russell Brown

Read Post

Hard News: Friday Music: Virtual Rockstar Accountant

25 Responses

  • Grant McDougall,

    And with that, I’m off. By the time of next week’s Friday Music I’ll be in London.

    What's happening over there ?

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 759 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Grant McDougall,

    What’s happening over there ?

    I'm seeing friends on the way to the main job. The famous Czech beer Pilsner Urquell is (re)launching in NZ (cold-shipped and all) and I, your fearless reporter, am going to Prague and Pilsen to make sure that everything is in order.

    Dirty job, someone has to, etc.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22761 posts Report Reply

  • Grant McDougall,

    Best. Junket. Ever.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 759 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Every music biog I've read has contained a sad tale of how record companies and management absorbed all the act's early earnings leaving them in debt until maybe the third album. Have things changed?

    Also, I'm fairly sure minors have ownership of their earnings in NZ, whether it's a paper round or $11 million dollars. A lawyer might comment?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • Alan Perrott,

    it's the "famous" czech beer is it?...seems you're on the clock already. get in.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 438 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    He joked to me that he was thinking of turning his exquisitely-crafted Excel doc into an “interactive rock star accountant” – you put in the contract terms and it spits out net income. I reckon there’s a video game in that.

    As long as it doesn't end up like the painfully awful NZ Music Manager game.

    Earnings ... are comparable with her winning Lotto’s Powerball last year, and then guaranteeing a first division prize annually.

    This was the best part of the article. $11 million is a lot of money, but it suddenly becomes real when put in big-money terms that average NZers can relate to - it's like winning Lotto, every year.

    BTW, an article like this is going to trigger all sorts of people wanting Lorde to pay for their mortgage/medical procedure/perpetual motion machine, as if Lorde just has a bank account with $11 idly sitting in it.

    But who cares about money, honey, when the "Yellow Flicker Beat" video is so good. Because I am a music video nerd, I counted eight different locations (all beautifully shot by Emily Kai Bock) and 50 extras. Not many (if any) NZ music videos have that, unless the extras are all friends and fans doing it for free. It is super to see Lorde's creative vision continuing to thrive.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Alan Perrott,

    it’s the “famous” czech beer is it?…seems you’re on the clock already. get in.

    Heh. It is, really. It was the first golden lager (all others before it were dark) and thus literally the original pilsener. I used to seek it out in London in the 80s, when it came in chunky 500ml bottles.

    It’s owned now by SAB Miller, but they seem to have very effectively fenced off the original brewing process from corporate influence. I tried some of the first cold-shipment last week and it was actually bloody good.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22761 posts Report Reply

  • Alan Perrott, in reply to Russell Brown,

    "actually bloody good" - that's their marketing campaign right there. your work's dusted so you may as well tot up the bill and stay home.

    seems I've got a thirst coming on too. damn you.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 438 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    What she wrote on her Tumblr was all about this, the video for ‘Yellow Flickr Beat’ (”i wasn’t thinking too hard about story or a specific narrative, more a mood; a harsh, crackling heat”)

    Oh, stop being so bloody smart youngling. :) Seriously, you can do a lot of really interesting things with the form if you're a bit more lateral when thinking about the images you attach to the music.

    Here's Uncle Len (not that one) to show you kids how it's done -

    Norman McLaren's 'Spheres' (that's Glenn Gould humming away in the background):

    Roger Mainwood's delightfully trippy video for Kraftwerk's 'Autobahn'

    And the shorter, sharper, really minimalist one for The Replacements' 'Bastards of Young' --

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Alan Perrott,

    and just a few nice scores of late...

    Goom, French erm, trance pysch? dunno but works a treat when rather loud

    Anandar Shankar does the Stones with olde electronic noodlry and sitar. well groovy

    great last track of night type thingy. singing it like you mean it

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 438 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Brislen,

    Courtney Love has a tremendous piece in Salon about the typical record company approach to contracts:

    http://www.salon.com/2000/06/14/love_7/

    Favourite line:

    Today I want to talk about piracy and music. What is piracy? Piracy is the act of stealing an artist’s work without any intention of paying for it. I’m not talking about Napster-type software.

    I’m talking about major label recording contracts.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 200 posts Report Reply

  • Ken Double, in reply to Craig Ranapia,

    And the shorter, sharper, really minimalist one for The Replacements' 'Bastards of Young'

    The ultimate anti-video video of course. They hated MTV with a passion.

    In the glory days of C42 - why it feels like it was only last year! - I always enjoyed the electronic show. I'm no bleep-fiend but e-music gives a director more latitude. Possibly because it doesn't (ahem) demand your attention so much. Was that diplomatic?

    Wellington • Since Dec 2012 • 119 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Paul Brislen,

    I’m talking about major label recording contracts.

    Things have actually changed a bit in recent years. Contracts have become more transparent, not least a consequence of a myriad of lawsuits from established artists. Ella has good management and a publishing deal which will probably generate most of her income over time. She's not going to end up like Courtney Love, any way you look at it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22761 posts Report Reply

  • Alan Perrott,

    was just reading about this - Quatro covers Jones covering the Normal

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 438 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Alan Perrott,

    was just reading about this – Quatro covers Jones covering the Normal

    Cool, huh? It sounds like the Cherry Red box set it's off might be strictly for the fans, though. But congrats: you just sent me off looking for Suzi Quatro clips on YouTube.

    And I've just put on the vinyl copy of The Suzi Quatro Story I got at the record fair the other weekend.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22761 posts Report Reply

  • Alan Perrott,

    well if it helps I'm still counting down to the pint I've been hankering for - transcribing all day, bleeding tedious.

    but yeah, that track would make a great 7. maybe with the Normal on t'other side.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 438 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Alan Perrott,

    – transcribing all day, bleeding tedious.

    I am capable of the most surpassing feats of procrastination when there's transcribing to be done.

    Oddly enough, I am actually working.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22761 posts Report Reply

  • Alan Perrott, in reply to Russell Brown,

    also, and I'm probably the last to catch on, I hadn't connected that track to Car Crash Set before. never been much for focusing on lyrics to be honest.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 438 posts Report Reply

  • Hugh Wilson,

    Big fan of that Tornadoes track (got it on 45), but think it goes in the straight dirty funk drawer as opposed to afrobeat ... anyhow, enough quibbling, good work, and heres a tight funk mix of Kayne samples: 40 records, 20 minutes, 2 turntables

    https://soundcloud.com/nickarks/louder

    Melbourne • Since Feb 2013 • 164 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Johnston, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I got The Suzi Quatro Story for Christmas in 1975 but sold it along with most of my other 70s rock albums when punk hit a few years later (and yes I do regret doing that). I do still have the original 7" of The Normal's Warm Leatherette though. Although to be honest I do wish I'd held onto the Quatro LP, and a few others. Ahh nostalgia, it's not what it used to be...

    Wellington • Since Sep 2013 • 25 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    The other thing that happens today in the local music business is that for the first time, the official New Zealand singles charts will include audio streaming data alongside retail sales.

    I just had a look at this week's chart and there are no big surprises.

    * There are four new songs, but they're all new releases from popular artists.
    * There are three reentries, and they're all songs that have recently been in the charts.
    * There's a new number one, but it's a new release from Six60 who are hugely popular.

    So nothing unusual. No weird old songs suddenly recharting after 25 years (that happened a couple of weeks ago with "Ice Ice Baby" - the result of a media campaign).

    At a glance, it looks pretty much like a top 40 that's logically following on from last week's one, though I'm sure there are subtle differences in chart positions. I guess this means what people are listening to is roughly the same as what people are buying.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    There seems to be a few things missing from that Ella balance though (unless Matt has taken them into account behind the scenes).

    In the minus ledger:
    - recoupment. Recording and first vids are low but who knows what has been charged to her account. The standard is quite a bit, including tour support and assorted promo which can be huge.
    - not sure if he's taken into account things like advertising cuts in royalties. You advertise on TV or radio and, unless you've done an unusual deal, your royalty rate is cut, often up to half.
    - dealer discounts - see above.

    In the plus ledger:
    - performance income (both master and publishing) - which is the very big one in her ongoing future. The publishing is largely unencumbered income streams from all over the planet which kinda (from experience) go on forever. That, I would think, is why Chris H is saying this is understating the income. The record income will be dwarfed by that.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3283 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin, in reply to Russell Brown,

    The beer is really easily available now in London, many pubs now will have it on tap, which is probably due to SAB Miller's influence.

    Speaking of beer, I saw a long form advertisement for beer the other day, in the gym, from the Beer Alliance, which seems to be keen to convince Londoners that beer is the right drink for all kinds of meals or social situations. Including when eating tripe.

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 1021 posts Report Reply

  • Ethan Tucker,

    He joked to me that he was thinking of turning his exquisitely-crafted Excel doc into an “interactive rock star accountant” – you put in the contract terms and it spits out net income. I reckon there’s a video game in that.

    Something similar's been done, most amusingly in this 1988 C64/Amiga classic. Publicity stunts to launch your budding artist's new single generally resulted in grisly deaths for the starlet concerned.

    Wellington • Since Apr 2008 • 118 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Michie,

    Woah! Way to make up for last week's delay Russell!

    Auckward • Since Nov 2006 • 614 posts Report Reply

Post your response…

Please sign in using your Public Address credentials…

Login

You may also create an account or retrieve your password.