Author Archive

Following the Money: Solutions for Google’s Problems with Defrauded Advertisers — Music Tech Solutions

Google’s UK Policy Manager Theo Bertram advised in 2012–“Follow the Money to Fight Online Piracy”. Google’s copyright lawyer Katherine Oyama endorsed this approach on behalf of Google before the U.S. Congress in 2011 (“We would publicly support legislation like what I described, the follow the money approach…”). Several UK banks and other advertisers are now doing just that according to the London Times.

via Following the Money: Solutions for Google’s Problems with Defrauded Advertisers — Music Tech Solutions

@crunchdigital: “Got Licenses?” — Artist Rights Watch

A funny but true short video from Crunch Digital that documents how app developers deal with music licensing!


via @crunchdigital: “Got Licenses?” — Artist Rights Watch

Please Support Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts on Amplify Austin Giving Day!

Amplify Austin is a city-wide day of online giving supporting hundreds of Austin-area nonprofits organized by I Live Here, I Give Here.  That day started yesterday and ends tonight (March 3) at 6pm.

There are many worthy nonprofits in Austin that participate in Amplify Austin, but the one we are supporting is Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts (“TALA”).  TALA provides legal and accounting services for Texas musicians and music industry nonprofits through referrals and classes.  Chris originated the “Four Nights of Rights” program with TALA as well as artist education programs co-sponsored by TALA and the Austin Music Office.  Many outstanding lawyers have generously contribute their time and support to artists and nonprofits through TALA by teaching and donating services.

We encourage MTP readers to consider supporting TALA by clicking here!



@theblakemorgan: #irespectmusic Rally at Cal State Chico Courtesy of SOTA Productions — Artist Rights Watch

February 28, 2017 Comments off

Friends Don’t Let Friends Get LRFA’d: Tell Congress Not to Get Suckered into the Local Radio Freedom Act

February 23, 2017 Comments off

Once again we’ve started a new session of Congress with really old news–the National Association of Broadcasters is yet again circulating the reactionary Local Radio Freedom Act (or the grammatically challenged “LRFA”) that’s been warmed over and served up again from the last Congress.

Nothing But Money: Spotify’s New Offices Are Highest End of the Highest End Real Estate

February 23, 2017 Comments off

Remember that Spotify is continually carping about how much they have to pay for their one product–music–and how they can’t seem to turn a profit?  According to World Property Journal:

Spotify, a digital music service provider, has signed a deal to acquire 387,243 sq. ft. of Class A office on lease at 4 World Trade Center. The agreement is of 15 years with the building owner Silverstein Properties, reported by a real estate consultant JLL.


Fortune also reported:

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced during a press conference on Wednesday streamed via Facebook Live as well as via a series of tweets that the digital music company is moving into Four World Trade Center. Spotify will soon be neighbors to other big brands in the building, such as the Lower Manhattan outpost of Chef Mario Batali’s Italian food emporium Eataly.

Headquartered in Stockholm with offices scattered around the world, Spotify already occupies considerable real estate in Manhattan’s Flatiron District. But it doesn’t look like Spotify is moving as Cuomo said Spotify will be create 1,000 jobs at the new floorspace.

Cuomo closed out his announcement with his own official Spotify playlist [no doubt the handiwork of Spotify’s in-house politico, Jonathan Prince].

“I hope Spotify’s expansion sends a clear signal to the tech community that New York is open for business,” said Horacio Gutierrez, Spotify’s general counsel, according to Cuomo’s tweet.

Right–because the tech community was so in doubt about whether New York was “open for business.”  I wonder how much it costs for a governor to promote a playlist?  No plug-ola here, though, it’s not radio.

So how much does 387,243 square feet of office space in 4 World Trade Center cost Spotify?  We don’t know yet, but probably will if they file for an IPO.  Just as a reference, a co-working space in One World Trade Center (nice but not as nice as 4 World Trade Center evidently) costs $750 a month per cubbyhole (or did).  So that’s what you pay for a desk and a phone.

Here’s what 4 World Trade Center looks like.

You have to ask yourself why it is that Spotify need to be in the poshest digs in Manhattan while they are poor mouthing about royalty rates?  I’d be happier if they just paid their rent deposit into TJ Martell Foundation and bought a building in Poughkeepsie.  At least they’d have a tax deduction and an appreciating asset.

But I’m just a country lawyer and I’m not as smart as these city fellers.

RIP Clyde Stubblefield

February 22, 2017 Comments off

When I was a teenager, I used to rehearse with two other drummers both of whom were R&B players or what my friend Benny Valerio called “soul musicians”.  I had a big drum kit and was very much a rock player, or at least I wanted to be.  I suffered from what we called BS, or the “busy syndrome”.

The first time we rehearsed together, the other two guys let me bang away and then one of them walked up to my kit while I was playing.  Without saying a word he began to dismantle my drum set until all that was left was bass drum, high hat and snare.  I stopped playing and asked him what in the world he thought he was doing.  He said, “If you can’t do it with bass drum, high hat and snare, then you are nowhere.”

Truer words never spoken and that was probably the best lesson I ever took.  We spent many hours working on James Brown grooves laid down by Clyde Stubblefield.  Fast forward about eight years and I got to open for Mr. Brown for a few dates which was a real thrill (Maceo, Sweet Charles, Fred Wesley and General Patton).

RIP Clyde Stubblefield, one of the most influential drummers of all time.  He certainly was for me.

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