Music Headlines from Logan

I’m sitting in Logan Airport killing some time (should I say the word “killing” in an airport?), waiting for an 8:50 PM Jet Blue flight to JFK, which I’m way early for. I met up with my friend Karen Dyer (a Miami socialite who doubles as a State Department employee by day) earlier this afternoon at the American Air terminal to catch up on old times. We were both in New England for the holidays and took advantage of similar travel schedules to catch up on three years of life in an hour and a half.

Karen and I met through X-Mix, back in 1992 or so, when she was working for a music distribution company and I was spreading the gospel of X-Mix to anyone who would listen. We stayed friends throughout the years and she’s been a superstar for letting me crash at her place for, I think, 5 or 6 out of the 9 Winter Music Conferences I’ve attended.

This is the perfect time to share some headlines from Google News that some of you might be interested in. I’ve set Google News to send me a daily email to my Gmail account with the results of a search of the terms “Music” or “DJ.” Google doesn’t actually publish the news, they simply use their proprietary search engine to crawl, identify and link to news stories on thousands of other news web sites.

Here’s a few tidbits from the past few weeks I thought might be of interest to some of you:

Spitzer’s music probe said to expand
CNN/Money – USA
Excerpt: LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Three major music labels have been subpoenaed by New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer in connection with an ongoing antitrust investigation into the pricing of digital music downloads, according to news reports.

Iran’s President Bans Western Music

San Francisco Chronicle – CA, USA
Excerpt: Hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has banned all Western music from Iran’s state radio and TV stations — an eerie reminder of the 1979 Islamic revolution when popular music was outlawed as “un-Islamic” under Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

Today, though, the sounds of hip-hop can be heard blaring from car radios in Tehran’s streets, and Eric Clapton’s “Rush” and the Eagles'”Hotel California” regularly accompany Iranian broadcasts.

No more — the official IRAN Persian daily reported Monday that Ahmadinejad, as head of the Supreme Cultural Revolutionary Council, ordered the enactment of an October ruling by the council to ban all Western music, including classical music, on state broadcast outlets.

Can’t Stop the Music, Say Young Iranians After Ban
Washington Post – United States

Excerpt: TEHRAN, Iran — A young woman driving through the Iranian capital blared the Eagles’ “Hotel California” from her car speakers — an act that would have gotten her pulled over by police, and possibly arrested, 20 years ago during the frenzy of the Islamic Revolution.

To Pari Mahmoudi, who grew up in an era when many of the 1979 revolution’s restrictions have been dropped or ignored, a new ban on Western music ordered last week by Iran’s hard-line president seems too ludicrous to be real. “Don’t take this man seriously,” the 25-year-old scoffed Tuesday, referring to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Electronic music defined
Edmonton Sun – Canada
Excerpt: On the should-be-negligible off-chance you electronic music junkies don’t own an album by the incomparable Leftfield, I still find it difficult to recommend A Final Hit, a collection of Leftfield’s greatest hits.

I mean, come on, Leftfield only released two albums. If you’re going to pick up anything, get their debut, 1995’s Leftism. After hearing that, you’ll no doubt be inspired to purchase its followup, 1999’s Rhythm and Stealth.

NY mom faces down music industry suit

Boston Herald – United States
Excerpt: WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – It was Easter Sunday, and Patricia Santangelo was in church with her kids when she says the music recording industry peeked into her computer and decided to take her to court.

Santangelo says she has never downloaded a single song on her computer, but the industry didn’t see it that way. The woman from Wappingers Falls is among the more than 16,000 people who have been sued for allegedly pirating music through file-sharing computer networks.
Click for more on this story…

Paul van Dyk – Superstar DJ Spins Politics Dance – UK
Excerpt: Berlin’s superstar DJ Paul van Dyk has his feet on the ground – remarkable really, since he spends much of his time jetting around the world to his next gig, such is the demand from adoring fans hungry for his immaculately blended trance music.

And it’s van Dyk who pulls the crowds more than most, a fact borne out on his appearance at the very top of DJ magazine’s annual poll of the top 100 DJs.

Excerpt: DJ Willie is a true pioneer in bringing Reggaeton blends and mixes to the streets and also nightclubs around the globe. He has a tremendous amount of success in 2005 with his successful Reggaeton Mixtapes which is has been gaining popularity quickly from coast to coast. Reggaeton and Latin hip-hop are currently making their presence felt across America. “Radio stations are flipping their formats to Reggaeton / Latin Hip Hop across the country to fulfill the Hispanic community’s needs” says DJ Willie, currently the leader in a growing trend of Latin DJ’s making moves with Reggaeton mixtapes.

Verizon plans to offer mobile music downloads

CNET – United States
Excerpt: Verizon Wireless is expected to introduce a music download service next month that will let subscribers purchase music wirelessly over their mobile phones and transfer songs between their phones and Windows PCs, CNET has learned.

The new service, called V Cast Music, is scheduled to become available on Jan. 16 at Circuit City, Verizon Wireless stores and Verizon’s Web site, according to documents seen by CNET It would allow customers to browse, preview, download and play music from a mobile handset and a computer.

DJ trio gets Mumbai spinning
Daily News & Analysis – Mumbai,India
Excerpt: They are chilling out to bhangra beats, with a few whispered remarks that let off riotous laughter. You can’t help but think of the Asian underground movement and the Brit-Asian music that has caught on in India like never before. “Music is politics; you can’t avoid it in the UK. The whole underground scene was shaped up by politics,” says DJ Bobby Friction. “It was a crazy show with me and Nihal going berserk with the music we played,” he laughs.

Progressing back to basics
Electric New Paper – Singapore
Excerpt: AWAY from the big clubs, a DJ collective known as Progressions has been drawing the crowds to its underground events.

Literally called Progressions: Underground, it hosted two of its progressive house, breaks and trance nights in a small fourth-floor attic, above Happy Bar and Mox Cafe in Tanjong Pagar Road in October.

Everything – manpower, drinks, DJ, sound equipment – had to be set up just for that night. It catered to approximately 400 people, all friends and friends of friends of the organisers.

I hope you enjoyed this sampling of news items from around the world. From time to time, I’ll pull out a few and post them here in an effort to help keep my readers up-to-date in the world of digital music. Generally, I try to write about dance/electronic and a bit of hip-hop.

Have a happy New Year!

Tony Z.

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