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Six Acoustic Guitar Tips
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The Virgins and ASCAP: Did A Performance Rights Organization Do Anything For Us?
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Cool Gizmo Alert: Genz-Benz G-Flex 2x12
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Indie News Beat

January 3, 2006 Edition

* AARC Announces Completion Of 10th Annual Royalty Distribution
* The New 7th Edition Of The Indie Bible Has Been Released
* MIDEM 2006 Poised For Second International Indie Summit
* Planet Verge And LOUD Merch Launch Monthly Magazine For PlayStation Portable
* 3 Kisses: Powered By Sam Ash
* Indie Band Simon Apple Cracks U.S. Top 10
* Luxxury Announces Full Length Debut "Sex With Rich People"
* CrossDogs Aims To Revolutionize Christian Music Industry
* The Babylon Cowboys Release Latest Single, 'Mr. Business Man'
* "Mash Master" Moldover Unveils Revolutionary Octa-Masher

AARC Announces Completion Of 10th Annual Royalty Distribution To Featured Artists And Copyright Owners

The Alliance of Artist's and Recording Companies (AARC) announced today the completion of its annual distribution to artists and record companies, totaling nearly $3,500,000. This represents AARC's tenth annual distribution.

AARC is a not-for-profit organization representing artists and recording companies in regard to hometaping and rental royalties in the US and abroad. It is the leading common agent representing these two groups. The AARC is lead by a Board of Directors consisting of 13 record company and 13 artist representatives.

"This year's distribution, which kept AARC's small staff and a team of interns working 'round the clock went off flawlessly," said Linda R. Bocchi, executive director of the AARC.

"We're very proud that since its creation, AARC has distributed nearly $19,000,000. This represents true financial compensation to artists of all genres, major and independent record companies," said Virgil Roberts, AARC Record Company director and partner in the Los Angeles law firm of Bobbit & Roberts.

AARC has also made impressive advances in the international arena. Many countries have hometaping laws, similar to the US Audio Home Recording Act of 1992, permitting featured artists and record companies to recover hometaping royalties. AARC currently has agreements for artists' hometaping royalties with Japan, Spain, Ireland and the Netherlands and additional agreements with Japan and the Netherlands for independent record company hometaping royalties.

In addition to these agreements, AARC also has an agreement with Japan for artists' royalties from the rental of sound recordings in Japan. Japan is one of just a few countries that permit the rental of sound recordings. This agreement stems from the provisions in the TRIPS Agreement, which is an international trade-related agreement to protect intellectual property. AARC is currently in negotiations with other countries and hopes to have several new agreements in the near future.

"It is AARC's goal to ensure that our artists and copyright owners are fairly compensated for the exploitation of their sound recordings," said Jay Cooper, AARC Board co-chairman (representing artists) and Chairman of the West Coast Entertainment Department of the Los Angeles law firm of Greenberg Traurig, LLP. "I am very proud of the great strides AARC has made in the past twelve years. We will continue to seek additional royalty sources and protect our members' rights worldwide," added Cooper.

"The 2005 calendar year has been a busy and productive one for AARC," noted Bocchi. In addition to the accomplishments noted above, this spring AARC relocated its offices from downtown Washington, DC to Old Towne Alexandria, VA.


The New 7th Edition Of The Indie Bible Has Been Released

The Indie Bible is a valuable resource for Recording Artists that lists 4200 publications that will review your music and 3400 radio stations that will play your songs. Over 8,500 contacts in all. All genres of music are covered!

The Indie Bible shows you where to get your music reviewed, your songs played, and your CDs sold. Now in its 7th Edition, The Indie Bible has 343 pages of valuable contacts and music-related articles.

The 7th Edition of the Indie Bible contains:

- 4200 publications from around the world that will REVIEW your CD!
- 3400 radio stations from around the world will PLAY your songs!
- 600 vendors and services that will help you to SELL your music!
- 330 sites where you can UPLOAD your band's MP3 files!
- 500 helpful resources and sites where you can PROMOTE your band! 52 articles that will help your career to MOVE forward rapidly! Authors include Tim Sweeney, Daylle Deanna Schwartz, Jeri Goldstein, Brian Austin Whitney, Derek Sivers, Diane Rapaport, Peter Spellman, Bryan Farrish, Christopher Knab and many more!


MIDEM 2006 Poised For Second International Indie Summit

On January 23 2006, MIDEM will bring together hundreds of independent music companies and affiliated associations for the second edition of the International Indie Summit. Launched for the first time at MIDEM 2005, this conference day offers a unique opportunity to assess the current position of independent labels in today's marketplace. An impressive line-up of industry heavyweights are already confirmed to participate in the summit and will be exchanging ideas and thoughts on the independent sector, and the important part it plays in the industry as a whole.

Three prominent figures from the independent sector will join forces for a special keynote session: Seymour Stein, President & CEO of American label Sire Records, Martin Mills, Chairman of Beggars Group (UK) and Johnny Duann, Co-Founder and Chairman of Rock Records (Taiwan). The legendary label, Sire Records, was established in 1966 and launched the careers of some of the biggest names in the business such as Madonna, The Ramones and The Talking Heads, to mention just a few. The Beggars Group ranks as one of the largest independent companies and is parent to numerous prestigious labels including 4AD, Beggars Banquet, Mantra, Matador, Mo'Wax, Nation, Too Pure, Wiiija and XL. Rock Records is a major independent label in Asia.

Besides the keynote sessions, the International Indie Summit will include two panels; the first will focus on alternative business models for independent labels and will examine the opportunities for increased revenue streams from new technology and merchandising. The panel will also discuss the financing of music labels and includes the following speakers: Jeremy Lascelles, CEO of the Music Division at Chrysalis Group (UK), Terry McBride, CEO, Nettwerk (Canada), Michael Haentjes, CEO, Edel Music (Germany) and David Pakman, CEO, eMusic and Managing Director, Dimensional Associates (US).

The second conference will centre on the progress and achievements of independent companies in today's music business environment. The panel will also assess the in-roads independents have made in protecting their interests in a market dominated by major companies. The focus comes a year after the global Coalition of Independent Labels launched at MIDEM 2005 and participants include the founders of key groups such as: A2IM (American Association of Independent Music), Impala (European Independent Label Association), BPI (British Phonographic Industry), ABMI (Brazilian Association of Independent Music) and from South Africa AIRCO (Association of Independent Record Companies). These leading experts will give their forecasts for the future, and review the steps needed to be taken in order to keep business moving forward.


Planet Verge And LOUD Merch Launch Monthly Magazine For PlayStation Portable

Two New Jersey based music companies, Planet Verge and Loud Merch, have teamed up to create a monthly downloadable magazine for SONY's PlayStation Portable (PSP).

SONY describes the PSP as "a powerful multimedia punch, enabling you to enjoy your favorite games, music, videos and photos instantly, anywhere. Factor in the PSP system's brilliant high-resolution screen and cutting-edge wireless connectivity and Internet browser and you may just have a revolution in your hands."

Planet Verge magazine, best known for its strong promotion of indie rock bands, brings readers the future of music, fashion and entertainment now. Staff members report from various countries, including New Zealand, Venezuela and South Korea. Planet Verge UK, based in Scotland, is set to launch in January and will focus on hosting shows for local bands. In its Hot Summer Music 2005 issue, Teen People magazine featured Planet Verge President Joelle Caputa as a future media mogul.

LOUD Merch was started in September 2004 to help supply indie bands with quality merchandise to sell at local shows and while touring. The company has since grown into a family of bands, artists, and fans. Hidden in Plainview, Biohazard, The Banner and Folly all now call LOUD Merch home.

"We see this partnership as being yet another stepping stone for both LOUD Merch and Planet Verge on our respective roads to success," says LOUD Merch's Michael Snell. "The combination of our collective resources and unyielding work ethic will greatly improve our ability to reach new audiences and help our bands continue to build their fan base. By taking the magazine online and further more making it portable for download to handheld devices such as the SONY PSP, Planet Verge will now be accessible to thousands and potentially millions of viewers on a daily basis, 24 hours per day."

Planet Verge will be one of the first music-oriented magazines to go downloadable for PSP when it releases issue 13 in January 2006. Managing Editor, Jennifer Sica promises that there will also be more entertainment features, like The Diary of a Male Nurse and The Pros and Cons of Dating an Emo Boy. Upcoming band interviews include Suicide City, 311, Bullet For My Valentine, 30 Seconds to Mars, What About Frank, Avenged Sevenfold and Motion City Soundtrack. Fashion features include a spotlight on My Chemical Romance's Frank Iero's new company, Skeleton Crew. Planet Verge will also bring readers inside Astro Magnetics (the new venture from Eyeball Records and Thursday's Geoff Rickley), tips on how to make it as a professional photographer (with Jeff Vespa, a favorite of Paris Hilton), a look at Goo Goo Doll Robby Takac's mission to help local bands, and the secret side of American Apparel.


3 Kisses: Powered By Sam Ash

Alternative-pop foursome, 3 Kisses, is amassing sponsorships and endorsements from a growing number of national companies. The band proudly represents Dirtbag Clothing, Dickies Girl, Daisy Rock Guitars, and 3 Kisses is endorsed by Madalyn Sklar and GoGirls Music.

Most recently, 3 Kisses were selected by national music retailer, Sam Ash Music Stores as one of their "Powered By Sam Ash" artists. This opportunity includes thousands of dollars a year in free gear as well as promotional opportunities such as the band photo in the Sam Ash Catalog and a feature on

An idiosyncratic combination of alternative, pop, rock and punk filled with catchy guitar hooks and introspective lyrics, the music of 3 Kisses earns the loyalty of fans around the globe. The band's freshman release, Wings, made the Top 20 Adds to college radio, charted on a number of stations including Chicago's WIIT and Pittsburgh's WPTS, was selected by Indie Artist Radio as Indie Music's Best of 2004 in Music Connection Magazine and was a winner of the Music Project of the Year Award and the Reader's Survey Award.


Indie Band Simon Apple Cracks U.S. Top 10

Philadelphia based band, Simon Apple, has cracked the U.S. Adult Contemporary Top 10 with their song "Hold Me (Like A Lover)", by reaching #10 on the national weekly radio chart and trade publication, Friday Morning Quarterback (FMQB). The song entered the Adult Contemporary FMQB chart the week of September 19 at #245 (with only Santana and Jim Brickman gaining more stations), and within a month cracked the Top 40. The song continued to gain upward momentum and reached #10 the first week of December.

What makes this so unique is the fact that Simon Apple is self-funded, on their own label (Trunk), without the luxury of a 6-figure major label promotion budget. "Hold Me", however, has moved ahead of many major label artists, including Kelly Clarkson, Green Day, Nickelback, Gwen Stefani, Rob Thomas, Eagles, Michael Buble, and others.

"Hold Me", is the first single released from the band's current studio album, "River To The Sea", which features several Grammy-winning and multi-platinum guest artists, including: Bassist Tony Levin (Peter Gabriel, King Crimson, Pink Floyd), guitarist Buck Dharma (Blue Oyster Cult), saxophonist John Helliwell (Supertramp), cellist Hugh McDowell (Electric Light Orchestra), and acoustic bassist Steve Rodby (Pat Metheny Group).

Simon Apple was co-founded by two Philly area natives, keyboardist/guitarist/producer, Jeff Miller, and drummer/lyricist, Buzz Saylor. They are joined by lead vocalist/guitarist, Dan Merrill, a resident of Portland, Maine. "River To The Sea" is the trio's latest creation that is receiving critical acclaim world-wide, being favorably compared to the likes of Sting, Steely Dan, Genesis, Dave Matthews Band, Marillion, Peter Gabriel, Bruce Hornsby, and John Mayer.


Luxxury Announces Full Length Debut "Sex With Rich People"

Luxxury announced its full-length album "Sex With Rich People" (Black Van Records), an electronic pop tale of status anxiety, indie rock snobbery, and how "Dirty Girls Need Love Too." The album will be released in multiple formats, each of which will include exclusive 1-2 tracks. The album will be available on Feb. 14, 2006 exclusively via digital download on Beatport and Myspace, followed by vinyl, CD and iTunes in mid March for the Winter Music Conference in Miami. The album's unveiling is the climax of a year of milestones, which includes being signed to Brooklyn-based Black Van Records, and Los Angeles-based music marketing company Natural Energy Lab.

"Luxxury is like the house band at a sex club for robots," said Devin O'Brien of Black Van Records. "Their electro rock beats are the perfect compliment to the grittier side of Black Van's sound. We're excited to have them onboard."

The announcement comes hot on the heels of the band's successful single debut "The Drunk EP," which received airplay on college rock and SF's Commercial Alternative Live 105 alike and made Internet playlists and DJ set lists from Tokyo to South Africa. Luxxury will be previewing songs from the album "Sex With Rich People" at a select series of shows, including the CNET/XLR8R magazine "Games and Music Experience" event at San Francisco's Moscone Center December 2-4, 2005, at the Key Club in Los Angeles on Dec. 8, 2005, and in NYC (venue and date TBA).

Luxxury's sound is part LCD Soundsystem's amped-up indie dance-rock, part future/retro glam of The Bravery, with a splash of 80's synthpop along the lines of Duran Duran, New Order and Frankie Goes to Hollywood. The skillful musicianship and songwriting will have retro-kitsch fans reaching for a cigarette long before the album ends.


CrossDogs Aims To Revolutionize Christian Music Industry By Bridging Gap Between Artists And Opportunities

Launching January 1, 2006 with the slogan "Where Potential Meets Opportunity", CROSSDOGS will revolutionize the way artists communicate with venues, book performances and take advantage of opportunities within the Christian music industry. In addition, CROSSDOGS will provide venues and other participating organizations and companies with access to top-notch artists who are eager to fill their available opportunities.

The brainchild of Gary LeMaster and Brant Christopher Menswar, CROSSDOGS was created to solve two major problems for Christian artists: finding places to perform and receiving adequate reimbursement for their time and travel.

"What we are doing is very simple at its core," says LeMaster, CROSSDOGS' CEO. "We are acting as enablers. We are giving artists access to things they would never normally have the opportunity to be a part of. And, we are giving venues and churches the resources to bless artists and ministers."

Menswar, CROSSDOGS' COO explains, "The world needs to hear God's Word in many different ways and coming from many difference sources. Money should never stop that from happening. Our program allows churches to bring in artists without having to worry about 'budget'. Bands find places to play and opportunities to ministerSchurches bless their congregations with music. It's a win/win for everyone involved."

Understanding and believing in the vision and goal of CROSSDOGS, many companies are choosing to partner with the site and will officially be on board by the January 1st launch. One such company is Stuph Clothing.

Stuph Clothing is the largest custom apparel design and printing company that has dedicated itself to serving Christian youth group ministries from across America. They will be partnering with CROSSDOGS to build awareness among youth leaders and churches, which will open doors for artist performance opportunities in all 50 states.


The Babylon Cowboys Release Latest Single, 'Mr. Business Man'

The Babylon Cowboys have released their latest single, 'Mr. Business Man' from 'Constellations Of Sound'. Go to The Babylon Cowboys official site to listen to 'Mr. Business Man', a dub/reggae track recorded by the Oxford, England based band and latest tracks from 'Constellations Of Sound'. About The Babylon Cowboys: Jenny May and Dave Tommo are based in Oxford, England, currently writing and recording tracks for their album 'Constellations of Sound'. They also run BandWeblogs.Com and their podcast, Band Weblogs Podcast Show Starring Jenny and Dave.


"Mash Master" Moldover Unveils Revolutionary Octa-Masher, Allowing Everyman To Become Mash-Up Pro

New York based mash-up artist and DJ MOLDOVER brought his revolutionary creation, the Octa-Masher, to Manhattan when he performs at The Warper Party at Botanica Bar (47 East Houston) on Tuesday, December 13. What is an Octa-Masher, you ask? Good question, not easy to answer. Part art installation and part technological innovation, the Octa-Masher "is an interactive music installation that allows one to eight people to simultaneously manipulate all the sounds I have in my DJ repertoire," explains MOLDOVER. "It's simplified and streamlined so that anybody, not just musicians, can work it."

Simply put, eight color-coded keyboards and speakers are hooked into MOLDOVER's laptop, allowing wanna-be DJs to manipulate audio in real time, utilizing the more than 400 sounds in the Mash Master's data base that have been divided into eight categories or "tracks" (drums, bass, voice, full-songs, etc.). To make this work smoothly, MOLDOVER manipulated the tempo and pitch of all tracks to match one another. Each keyboard controls one "track," and the user can manipulate sounds, control volume and alter effects such as adding echo or changing the pitch from bass to chipmunk.

In effect, MOLDOVER transformed his custom Live Remashing set up into a user-friendly, eight-person audio playground. "All the users need to do is press the keys and twiddle the knobs," MOLDOVER clarifies. "The music reacts to their actions. You get to see how the Octa-masher works and how people interact with it. The Octa-Masher can only be experienced in an interactive environment where you can control the sounds and communicate with the other participants."


Provided by the MusicDish Network. Copyright © Tag It 2005 - Republished with Permission

Grand Stand

MusicDish Network Promotes 60's Love Child Astrella-Celeste

MusicDish, an Internet music magazine publisher and artist marketing/development firm, is proud to announce the addition of Pop/Jazz singer Astrella Celeste to the MusicDish Network roster. Combining a variety of online viral marketing strategies, the MusicDish Network will be coordinating a broad campaign in support of her debut album "Blue Star" (the Spanish translation of Astrella Celeste).


MusicDish At MIDEM: J-Music Distribution, France

J-Music Distribution describes itself as "the very first European distributor of Japanese music whose activities link Japanese artists and their management, Japanese record companies, and European distributors together to provide a stable framework of distribution from artists to music retail store."

Formed in December 2005, J-Music Distribution representatives brought their business vision to "MIDEM, The World Music Market's 40th Edition" conference in Cannes, France.


Toshi Reagon to Present Fanny with ROCKRGRL Women of Valor Award On April 20
Toshi Reagon has been named to present pioneering all-female rock group Fanny with the ROCKRGRL Women of Valor Award, Friday, April 20, at the Berklee Performance Center, located at 136 Massachusetts Ave., Boston. Read more...
Musicians Turn to Short Run DVD Production
Today's independent musicians have started using new technologies including On Demand Short Run CD/DVD Production, enabling them to order smaller batches of CDs and DVDs in real time online 24/7 and ship to customers, one at a time.
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