Music Business Roundup: Copyright Royalty Board Question, Razor & Tie Join With Concord Bicycle Group, & More

john coltrane
Each week on Songwriter U, Songspace recaps the top stories in the world of music business. Here’s everything you need to know from the week ending on October 2nd.

Copyright Royalty Board Questions Rates
The Copyright Royalty Board asked a question this week that could pose many problems and arguments by suggesting they might charge different rates for major vs. indie record labels. They essentially wanted to know if they could “charge varying royalty rates for different music suppliers,” which could also refer to different genres. However, the posed question also revealed that UMG and Sony might be gearing up to argue for different rates as well, while independent labels have collectively said through A2IM they are in favor of a singular rate.
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Razor & Tie + Concord Bicycle Music
The two publishing / record label groups have joined together to form Razor & Tie Enterprises LLC. The new company was created after years of the CEOs looking for the right deal so they could combine forces. It didn’t feel right until this recent deal was struck, one which involved Concord investing in Razor & Tie instead of acquiring them. This deal will include working together to advance the Kidz Bop project, as well as Concord providing admin services for Razor & Tie’s publishing.
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YouTube to Create 2-in-1 Service?
YouTube’s Music Key has been in beta testing since last November, and apparently the feedback has given YouTube a new idea to bundle the service with an ad-free video subscription service. At the rumored price for Music Key alone, for $10 a month users would be able to view all video, stream music, and watch music videos. The service will hopefully be out by the end of October.
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Amazon Prime Adds UMG
One of the many players in the streaming business, Amazon Prime, has recently signed a deal with Universal Music Group. This will give Prime streaming users access to the world’s largest catalog of music – though it will not include the most recent records. This is an important deal for Amazon, as it allows them to compete with streaming services that already offer UMG’s catalog.
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Dart Music Distributes Classical
While there are many options for independent pop music distribution services such as TuneCore, those services do not work well with the classical genre. Dart Music has created their own service to fill in that gap and help classical music composers or labels distribute their records easily. The system focuses on the metadata related to the songs so that there is easy distribution to Apple Music, Spotify, and others.
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