DMT 140: Shazam’s round, Daisy and AT&T potential partners, YouTube and Vevo, Magna app #fail?

This week on Digital Music Trends it was a pleasure to welcome Sitar Teli (Connect Ventures), Steve Knopper (Rolling Stone) and Nikke Osterback (Saari Music) to discuss the latest news in the music tech industry. This week we cover Shazam’s new round of funding, the rumors of Beats-backed Daisy seeking a carrier partnership for launch in the US, YouTube and Vevo’s renewed partnership, Base79’s new round of funding, 7Digital first to sell music on the new Firefox Mobile OS and Jay-Z’s Magna Carta raising eyebrows from both a UX and privacy point of view.

Also as there were a few bits of news that we didn’t manage to cover on the panel so I jumped on at the end to record a short round-up which includes Songkick’s Detour expansion in the UK, Bing Audio expanding internationally, UMG’s deal with PLDT in the Philippines, South Africa’s Look & Listen music retail chain relaunching its digital store, startup Promohut and finally Bandzoogle acquiring OneSheet.

After a few weeks without hiccups you’ll notice that the video version of the show has a fair few “still picture” moments due to Skype malfunctions, trying my best to make sure the chance of this happening again is minimized my end. You can find this week’s shownotes here.

And finally I’d like to thank Venture Harbour ( for helping me out in the past few days to improve DMT’s website from an SEO standpoint…
I hope you enjoy the show, have a great week and ’till next time!

Timeline with YouTube links:

00:15 Introduction and Guests
01:55 Shazam closes a $40 million round of funding from America Movil
08:08 Beats-backed upcoming Daisy music streaming service reportedly seeking partnership with a major carrier in the US, potentially AT&T
16:08 YouTube and Vevo renew partnership with Google reportedly investing in the company to the tune of $40/50m
22:30 Base79 raises a new round of funding from Evolution Media Growth Partners
25:40 New Firefox Mobile OS is out in the wild and 7digital jumps on board to provide users a way to purchase and access music
29:40 Jay-Z’s album is released and there are UX and privacy concerns raised around the app through which Samsung gave away Magna Carta Holy Grail
40:40 Whatever the guests want to talk about!
Andrea by himself – quick run through extra news:
43:30 Songkick launches Detour in 10 more cities in the UK
44:30 Windows expands Bing Audio internationally and Spotify updates the Windows 8 Mobile app to add more functionality
45:35 Universal Music strikes a deal with the Philippines Long Distance Telephone company to distribute its music with the company’s mobile division
46:30 In South Africa music retail chain Look & Listen relaunches its digital store in partnership with Mondia Media
47:00 PromoHut launches to deliver pre-release access to superfans
48:10 Bandzoogle has acquired OneSheet

Andrea Leonelli

DMT 139: the Japanese music market, Foursquare + Deezer, RIAA Certifications, Songza and more

This week on Digital Music Trends I chat with Steve McClure, former Asia bureau chief of Billboard magazine and now executive editor of online newsletter,  and Taishi Fukuyama, executive director at PRTL ( As they are both experts in the Japanese music market we discuss the subject at length including the recent news that it may overtake the US in revenues in 2013, the bumpy development of a digital ecosystem, the role of management and promotions companies, JASRAC and more. We also cover international news as usual with the partnership between Deezer and Foursquare, the launch of a premium option for Songza users and the RIAA changing its certifications rules for digital albums in light of Jay-Z’s release. Also a couple of service notes with SXSW opening up the Panelpicker process and the release of Napster’s documentary “Downloaded”.
I hope you enjoy the show, have a great week and ’till next time.

00:15 Introduction and guests
02:00 Foursquare announces a partnership with Deezer in 15 territories, is Foursquare pervasive enough to grant Deezer a chunk of new users?
08:00 The Japanese music market, on the brink of surpassing the US in terms of revenues, were you guys surprised? What is the current state of the Japanese music industry today?
13:15 The growth of the Japanese market has been tied to the rise in physical sales related to the J-pop phenomenon and very specific bands. This is not coupled with the growth of a sustainable digital market yet, is this a dangerous position to be in?
18:04 Who is the main provider of music downloads on “feature phones” and how do those work? Taishi talks about Recochoku and the availability of artist-specific subscription as well as on-demand downloads.
20:00 How come that these services didn’t adapt to offer smartphone-based services too when the shift started happening over a year back?
27:00 is the latest website placing a focus on promoting Japanese music internationally, is there a lot of focus on breaking Japanese artists abroad and are Japanese artists working towards that?
36:45 The japanese authors society JASRAC is a huge part of the music industry in Japan, what kind of organisation is it, what’s the perception of the society in JAPAN and how does it behave with digital services for example?
42:30 The RIAA decided to change its certification rules in light of the release of Magna Carta Holy Grail, implying that they will count the copies sold via Samsung as part of the certification process while Billboard stated they won’t count towards the charts. What’s your take on all this?
50:25 Songza launched a premium service with “Club Songza” priced at 99 cents per week.
56:00 What’s the state of internet radio in Japan?
57:30 Napster Documentary “Downloaded” is available to download in the US
58:10 The SXSW machine restarts with the Panelpicker entries open once again
58:57 Thanks and outro

Andrea Leonelli

DMT 134: Asia special and a look at Music Matters

This week Digital Music Trends is entirely focused on digital music news from Asia including the latest coming from Music Matters which took place in Singapore last week. To help me understand what’s happening in the region the team of Valleyarm Digital and Music Weekly Asia including Marie Berst from Singapore, Neil Cartwright from Manila and Matt Campbell from Melbourne.

Thanks for watching,
Andrea Leonelli

00:17 Introduction of guests
02:30 What is Music Weekly Asia and how did the project get started?
03:55 So it must be pretty challenging to work with a team spread out across many different territories, how does that work?
04:50 There’s also a language problem as each of the territories covered speaks a different language, how do you keep up to date with what’s happening in the news given the language barrier?
6:35 Music Weekly Services recently launched a new chart service that is going to cover different territories in South East Asia what was the inspiration to start this and how important is it to have a chart?
08:15 How do you pull the data to put the chart together if there isn’t an organisation that counts sales like in the US and UK for example?
09:38 At Music Matters the CEO of Deezer talked about the company and its expansion in a number of territories in Asia (it’s present in Laos, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore), first of all adoption-wise how crucial are carriers to adoption and how crucial are price points?
12:48 Marie, were there concerns particularly around price points expressed at Music Matters?
14:05 Matt, one other other issues is to get as much local content as possible into these services. Do you think services are making a good enough effort to bring local content into their catalogues?
15:50 Neil talks about the availability of music and means of consumption for people in developing territories. There are also licensing issues where not all the content that is available in the UK or US is available in the Philippines because
18:20 Many digital music services that are planning to have a presence in the region set up shop in Singapore, why do you think that is?
19:45 Let’s talk about China, do you think it is a viable high growth market for the music industry?
23:30 Talking about downloads is there a big potential for growth in the region?
25:50 There appear to be a lot of streaming services available in Australia especially when you look at the population in the country it seems like a very crowded market, Matt what’s your take on this from Melbourne?
28:44 Talking about advertising-based services, for those territories that are not dependent on the usual Google and Facebook are their competitors collecting similar data sets and providing similarly targeted advertising?
30:40 YouTube in many territories – excluding China – can be seen as the great unifier as it’s widely available and popular. As part of that global sentiment there were a couple of events at Music Matters that were revolving around YouTube stars, how did those pan out?
33:37 Live sector, there’s been an increase in acts travelling to Asia as part of their world tours, are artists aware of their potential to sell tickets in some of these markets? Matt, Neil and Marie talk about Festivals in Indonesia, Australia and Singapore.
38:30 Talking about support structures aside from the well-known K-pop factory in Korea, are there any other support structures for artists for example in the Philippines?
40:30 Rob Wells remarked on how Universal is placing itself as a competitor of large entertainment networks like HBO for example rather than of other labels, do you feel like this can become an issue if a label makes deals essentially as an entertainment brand rather than a music provider and does that damage the independent sector?
41:40 There were quite a few independents present at Music Matters, do you feel like they have a voice in the local markets? Marie: In many developing territories looking at the local scene most bands are signed to independents or are unsigned.
42:45 Let’s talk about piracy, still a concern and how so?
47:50 Outro and end

DMT 132: Google Music, iRadio, Slacker & iHeartRadio, GRD, Soundcloud, Midem & more

This week on Digital Music Trends I’m joined by Darren Hemmings, founder of digital marketing agency Motive Unknown, and Stephen O’Reilly, director of Topspin UK & director of International Sales at Mobile Roadie.

This week we start by talking about the Google Music breaking news story, speculating on what will happen at the Google I/O event which unfortunately is due to happen just hours after this week’s DMT recording. We also talk about Apple’s woes lining up the licenses for iRadio, the growth of internet radio services like Slacker and iHeartRadio in the US, we talk about the Global Repertoire Database initiative setting up shop in London and Berlin, Midem moving dates by a week in 2014, Soundcloud opening a NY office and the upcoming Great Escape festival in Brighton.

You can find the shownotes for this week’s episode here:

And below you’ll find a list of the subject addressed in the show with timings which can serve as reference if you’re listening to the show or as a link if want to watch it on YouTube.

I hope you enjoy this week’s show, have a great week and ’till next time!

Andrea Leonelli

DMT 132 Timeline:

00:18 Introduction of guests

01:10 Breaking: Google launching a music subscription service? Discussion on what’s to come (pre Google I/O announcement that happened a few hours later)

14:30 Apple struggling in its licensing negotiations for iRadio?

22:40 Slacker and iHeartRadio both announcing healthy growth in listeners, we discuss the Slacker model in its free personalized radio to fully-fledged on-demand service.

27:00 How are current subscription services doing when it comes to offer personalized radio services?

29:14 The Global Repertoire Database announced the opening of offices in London and Berlin. Is the industry mature enough to understand its importance and make sure it succeeds?

36:00 Soundcloud opens an office in NY headed by former National Director of Strategic Partnerships at Pandora, does that mean a faster push towards advertising?

41:30 Midem changes dates to the first 1st/4th February

43:40 The Great Escape kicks off on the 16th of May

47:28 Guest’s projects and outro