Universal Music Group

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UMG Tried to Downplay Big Fire. Now, a Bigger List of Names

Cher, Dolly Parton, Styx, Rodney Dangerfield—all apparently lost master recordings in 2008 blaze

(Newser) - What's been called "the biggest disaster in the history of the music business" now has an even longer list of victims. A New York Times story documented the destruction of master recordings in a 2008 fire that burned a Universal Music Group vault, with 100 or so artists... More »

Fire Wiped Out Their Masters. Now the Artists Are Suing

They want Universal Music Group to pay up over devastating 2008 blaze

(Newser) - In 2008, a fire at Universal Studios Hollywood also hit a vault of master music recordings owned by Universal Music Group. The full scope of the damage wasn't revealed until earlier this month, when a New York Times investigation labeled it "the biggest disaster in the history of... More »

11 Years Later, Full Scope of a Music Disaster Is Revealed

NYT Magazine reports on Universal Studios fire that wiped out priceless master recordings

(Newser) - Some of history's most important music recordings were destroyed a decade ago. That's according to New York Times Magazine , which reports that a 2008 blaze at Universal Studios Hollywood was far more devastating than previously reported. Flames didn't just destroy movies and TV shows already copied to... More »

Richard Carpenter Files Lawsuit on Behalf of Karen

He's suing for unpaid digital royalties

(Newser) - The lawsuits may have only just begun: Richard Carpenter filed a suit in California Wednesday on behalf of sister Karen Carpenter's estate, saying record companies are cheating both of them out of digital royalties. Richard, the surviving member of the sibling duo, accuses Universal Music Group and A&M... More »

'Dancing Baby' May Head to Supreme Court

High court may hear mom's case against 'abusive' infringement claim by Universal

(Newser) - Of all the YouTube videos that could pose legal problems, a 30-second clip of a dancing baby seems less than likely. But almost 10 years after Stephanie Lenz posted her young son bopping to Prince's "Let's Go Crazy," her video may now appear before the Supreme... More »

Anonymous Deletes CBS Site

Hackers also take down Universal Music again

(Newser) - Those pesky online pirates known as Anonymous struck again today, knocking CBS.com offline for "a good period of time" and deleting all of its files, Gizmodo reports. Unlike earlier strikes this week against the Justice Department and the Motion Picture Association of America, the hackers actually deleted everything,... More »

Elvis Costello: Don't Buy My New Boxed Set

Inflated price 'appears to be either a misprint or a satire,' he quips

(Newser) - Elvis Costello's new Return of the Spectacular Spinning Songbook boxed set is pretty good—but no way is it worth the current price Elvis Costello says. The special-edition set, which includes a CD and DVD of a concert from earlier this year, plus a coffee-table book, is selling for... More »

New Jackson 5 Tracks Drop in Nov.

New single 'That's How Love Is' available online now

(Newser) - The Jackson 5 may well be back on the charts this November with the release of I Want You Back! Unreleased Masters, a collection of never-before-heard material and alternate versions of beloved tunes. One of the new songs, “That’s How Love Is,” can be heard on the... More »

Apple Teams Up With Record Labels to Revive the Album

(Newser) - Apple has joined forces with four major record labels on a mission to get music buyers to start buying albums again instead of just single tracks, the Financial Times reports. The project—codenamed "Cocktail"—will bundle album downloads with lyrics sheets, sleeve notes, photos, and assorted interactive features... More »

Universal, YouTube Team Up for Music Video Site

(Newser) - At last, a little peace and harmony between the music industry and the tech world. YouTube and Universal Music announced a deal today to create a new website called Vevo.com to show music videos, CNET reports. It will launch later this year, with YouTube—and parent company Google—providing... More »

Warner Music Pulls Videos From YouTube

Contract negotiations between firms stall

(Newser) - Warner Music ordered YouTube to remove all music videos by Warner artists today after talks to renew their licensing deal stalled, Reuters reports. The impasse could affect hundreds of thousands of video clips. The music group, home to artists such as Madonna and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, is demanding... More »

Stones Exit EMI, Jump to Universal

Post-1971 catalogue comes with Jagger & Co., who take potshot at now-former label

(Newser) - After the latest skirmish between EMI’s new owner and the recording label’s bands, the Rolling Stones have fled for Universal—in a $15 million deal that includes rights to all Stones releases since 1971. Mick Jagger & Co. knocked EMI on the way out the door, the Times... More »

As Digital Gains, Album Sales Plunge 11%

Music biz turmoil as CDs plummet

(Newser) - CDs continue to go the way of the 8-track, losing further ground to digital music. Another big drop in CD sales is being driven by the closure of Virgin stores and reduced shelf space at outlets like Target. CD sales are off 16% over the last 12 months and total... More »

14-Year-Old Boy Sues 50 Cent

Teen alleges rapper's music promotes gangsta lifestyle that led to his assault

(Newser) - 50 Cent and Universal Music Group were sued yesterday for promoting a "gangsta lifestyle" that encourages violence. The plaintiff: 14-year-old James Rosemond, who was assaulted on a Manhattan sidewalk by 50's fellow G-Unit member Tony Yayo. Rosemond is the son of a record exec whose label represents The Game,... More »

Record Labels Sue Chinese Sites to Block Illegal Music

Industry takes on huge world of downloads

(Newser) - Major record labels are suing two Chinese websites that allegedly allow illegal music downloads in a case that could have a huge impact on the way the Chinese obtain music.  The groundbreaking multi-million dollar case over copyright infringement could pave the way for even larger claims, the Wall Street ... More »

MySpace Music Takes On iTunes

Joint venture with record companies aims to create competition

(Newser) - The world of online music buying looks set for a shakeup with the launch of MySpace Music, announced today. The joint venture between MySpace and three of the big four record labels aims to compete head-to-head with iTunes, CNET News reports. Music industry bigwigs are said to have long felt... More »

Meet China's First Global Pop Star

Or at least, that's what Sa Dingding hopes to become

(Newser) - China may be storming the world right now, but it’s never had good luck with pop starts. That could change with Sa Dingding, a half-Mongolian singer/songwriter, who sings entirely in Tibetan over a velvety mix of traditional instruments like the zither and modern electronica. Universal’s hoping the whole... More »

Austrian Monks Nab Record Deal

Austrian monks to record Gregorian chant album

(Newser) - Amy Winehouse and Cistercian monks wouldn't seem to have much in common, but now they've got the same record label, the BBC reports. Universal Music's search for "sacred singers" to record a Gregorian chant album turned up an Austrian monastery dating back to 1133. "It was beautiful, beautiful... More »

MySpace Makes Music Overtures

Social networking site turns to recording labels in effort to broaden appeal

(Newser) - MySpace has spent the past few weeks approaching major record labels, trying to hammer out a deal for a new online music service, the Wall Street Journal reports. The deal—tentatively MySpace Music—would likely let users stream unlimited music for free, and buy downloads that could be played on... More »

Qtrax Hits Snags

Startup promised free, legal, iPod-compatible downloads rom all the major labels

(Newser) - Startup Qtrax has been promising free, legal music downloads from all the major labels via an ad-supported site that was supposed to launch this morning. Too good to be true? Maybe. On the eve of its debut, things started to unravel, with Warner, Universal and EMI all denying agreements with... More »

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