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SONY ACQUIRES MUBADALA'S SHARE IN EMI PUBLISHING
So, yeah, that's big. (5/23a)
I.B. BAD: PERFECT STORMS
Spotify, Vivendi, Childish, more. (5/23a)
DOWN THE TUBE: LYOR'S PRESS TOUR
He's the Wile E. Coyote of the music biz. (5/23a)
YOUR TOP 20: MIDWEEK SHOWDOWN (UPDATE)
Looks we have a horse race. (5/23a)
IRVING ISN'T BUYING
LYOR'S HYPE
One succinct, well-aimed tweet (5/23a)
THE NEW LEADERS
We chat with the top label execs about changing times.
NEW & DEVELOPING ARTISTS SPECIAL
They're young, they're happening and we've got 'em.
PIZZA PLACEMENT
Songs by the slice.
A.I. AND OUR FUTURE
Planning for Skynet.
Music City
HARMONIC CONVERGENCE
5/21/18

Big Machine artist Trent Harmon, whose "You Got 'Em All" is moving up at Country radio, weathers the bewildering onslaught that is a visit to HITS HQ in Hollywood. It's believed that the story of his escape, following a terrifying invitation from VP/Managing Editor Simon Glickman to "jam," will form the basis of hs follow-up album.

GROWTH ON THE BIG MACHINE TEAM
5/18/18


Big Machine Label Group
announced the addition of 
Christine Salomone (right) as Vice President, Strategic Partnerships and the promotion of Leah Fischer (left) to Project Manager, both will be reporting to Chief Marketing Officer Mike Rittberg.

Salomone comes into the fold with over 15 years of branded entertainment content, while Fischer has been with BMLG since 2015. Fiscsher will act as project manager for Justin Moore, Eli Young Band, Carly Pearce, Danielle Bradbery and Drake White.

“Christine’s track record and passion for the brand partnership space will be a tremendous asset to BMLG and our artists,” said Rittberg. “We are excited to have her join the team and so excited for Leah to be able to grow from within BMLG. Her promotion background will be of immense help as she takes on marketing initiatives.”

ALL EYES ON CODY
5/17/18

Texas act Cody Johnson has been raising eyebrows with proportionally higher ticket sales for his circuit, and now he's upping his label price tag. Word has it that a wide array of indies and majors alike are chomping at the bit to get a deal done. Where will he land? Only time (and maybe a few birdies) will tell. 

HOME TEAM INKS A NEW HITTER
5/17/18

Thomas Rhett's Home Team Publishing announced its latest signing in Nashville-native Parker Welling to a global publishing deal. 

Welling's notable credits include nine of 11 tracks on Russell Dickerson's debut album Yours, including the platinum-certified title track and its follow up single "Blue Tacoma." She'll be joining songwriter Eric Olson on Home Team's roster. 

“I am so excited to join Home Team Publishing,” said Welling. “When I started looking for a publishing deal, I really wanted a team that includes female leadership, and I wanted an artist/writer involved. I feel like I found what I was looking for times ten! Thomas Rhett, Rhett, and the Home Team feel like family…I feel like I’ve come home.”

THE CMA GOES TO MUSIC BIZ
5/16/18

The Country Music Association stopped in at Music Biz for the 60th annual conference this week (6/15) to present  “The Country Consumer: The Next Phase of Streaming Growth.”

The presentation addressed how the industry continues to grow Country streaming consumption both here in the U.S. and around the globe.

The panel was introduced by CMA Sr Director of Market Research Karen Stump, moderated by UMG Nashville VP of Marketing - Digital Accounts Annie Ortmeier and featured speakers like Amazon's Emily Cohen, Pandora's Beville Dunkerley, YouTube's Margaret Hart and Spotify's Brittany Schaffer. 

The CMA also sponsored the Awards Breakfast & Presentations where the Presidential Award for Outstanding Executive Achievement was presented to RIAA Chairman & CEO Cary Sherman, and the Independent Spirit Award was presented to owners of Dimple RecordsThe Radakovitz Family

The gathering also saw a performance from Kelsea Ballerini, who sang “Legends” and "Love Me Like You Mean It" as well as current chart-rising single “I Hate Love Songs."  

Pictured just after schooling the Biz on country streaming are (l-r): Hart, Schaffer, Dunkerley, Stump, Cohen and Ortmeier. 

Seen at the awards breakfast before noting the remarkably large mimosa consumption are (l-r): CMA CEO Sarah Trahern, Sherman, Ballerini and Music Biz Association President James Donio.

WOMAN RECEIVES THE BELMONT BOOK AWARD
5/16/18

Woman Walk The Line: How The Women in Country Music Changed Our Lives, written by our very own HITS Nashville Correspondent and all 'round Force of Nature, Holly Gleason, has just been awarded the Belmont Book Award, to go with its many other laurels. 

“I was startled and thrilled for all of the writers and the artists they celebrated,” Gleason said of the news. “I know how academically accomplished those judges are, and it speaks volumes about the work each of these women did. How music impacts a life, changes a person or even empowers an individual is something we don’t pay enough attention to. At a time when #MeToo and TimesUp matters, this book–and the response to it–is proof that positive women do listen to women’s art, and find within that art a sense of strength, comfort, inspiration and validation. What’s amazing is how many men did, too.”

A 10-gallon hats off to Holly for creating the anthology of 27 essays by women, on women that tells stories of inspiration drawn from the women who helped to shape country music. 

SHELTON AND RYMAN HOSPITALITY PAINT THE TOWN RED
5/16/18


Ryman Hospitality Properties
 and Blake Shelton announced the grand opening of their recent partnership, Ole Red Nashville, located on Music City's Broadway strip. 

“Lower Broadway is the centerpiece of Nashville. There’s so much great music and fun going on down there all the time and it’s exciting to now be a part of it – it’s a dream come true,” said Shelton. 

Just in time for CMA Fest the Shelton-inspired restaurant, bar and venue will kick off its grand opening week (6/6-6/10) with an exclusive "Blake Shelton and Friends" concert following the CMT Awards

While tickets will not be available for sale to the public, fans can win tickets by entering here or listening to their local Country radio station. Fans who aren't able to win tickets can stream a portion of the show here at 11pm CT.

THE BLYTHE SPIRIT AT BIG LOUD
5/8/18

Stacy Blythe has just been promoted to the role of VP Promotion at Big Loud Records. The change is effective immediately with Blythe reporting directly to Prexy Clay Hunnicutt.

“Since Big Loud Records started almost three years ago, Stacy has been an integral part of the Big Loud family and has shown us– and the entire industry– that she is a leader who can deliver,” Hunnicutt says. “We would not be where we are today without her. There were people that told her she could not do this. Respectfully, we would say ‘You were wrong and she has proven it!’”

In her previous role as Big Loud's National Director of Promotion, she oversaw campaigns for Jake Owen, Chris Lane, Morgan Wallen, Jillian Jacqueline and Mason Ramsey