The Daily Rind | Your Top Source for The Orchard and Industry News

Working with a Living Legend: Richard Gottehrer

On my very first day at The Orchard almost three years ago, my boss took me around the office in typical Orchard tradition and introduced me to every single person sitting at his or her desk, from our accountants to our developers and everyone in between. Was anyone off limits? …

The Marketplace Presents: Klick Push

If you had the opportunity to get your music featured in more places, why wouldn’t you take it? And if those places were high-engagement areas, it’d really be a no brainer. Well listen up then, because our latest Marketplace partner, Klick Push, has just the thing for you. With access …

Use YouTube Annotations to Create an Album Preview Video

So you’ve got a new album coming out and you want to give fans a taste of what to expect. Try creating an album preview video and uploading it to your YouTube channel! We’ll walk you through how to set this up. Prepare Your Content We’re not going to go …

Become A SoundCloud Master and A Master Of Your Rights On SoundCloud

Between updating their subscription plans and experimenting with more visual profiles (still in early beta), SoundCloud has been on fire lately. ComScore even recently reported that their traffic increased by 26% in one month, making SoundCloud the 8th fastest growing site in the U.S. Though it’s certainly evolved since its launch in Berlin in …

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Take A Bow, 57th Grammy Award Nominees!

grammy-2015T’is the season… of awards! With that, Grammy nominations have just come in — and we couldn’t be more excited for our highlighted Orchard-repped artists and labels.

Between Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings, Ruthie Foster, The Stanley Clarke Band and more, so many great releases were unleashed into the world this year. The San Francisco Symphony gave us an incredible rendition of the musical classic West Side Story, Light In The Attic took us back to the late 60s with Lee Hazlewood, and Round Sky, Raveolution, Domo and Sounds True rep’ed hard in New Age. These (as well as many more who didn’t get nods this time around) deserve every bit of praise they get.

The awards go down February 8, 2015. Until then, here’s the full list of nominees from The Orchard:

Nomination Artist Album
Best R&B Album Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings Give The People What They Want [Daptone Records]
Best New Age Album Paul Avgerinos Bhakti [Round Sky Records]
Ricky Kej, Wouter Kellerman Winds of Samsara [Raveolution Studios]
Kitaro Symphony Live In Istanbul [Domo Records]
David Darling, Silvia Nakkach In Love and Longing [Sounds True]
Best Jazz Vocal Album Gretchen Parlato Live in NYC [ObliqSound]
Tierney Sutton Paris Sessions [BFM Jazz]
Best Roots Gospel Album T. Graham Brown Forever Changed [MCM World Media]
Best Regional Mexican Music Album (including Tejano) Ixya Herrera Voz Y Guitarra [Rampart Latino]
Best Tropical Latin Album El Gran Combo de Puerto Rico 50 Aniversario – Volume 1 [EGC Records]
Best Blues Album Ruthie Foster Promise Of A Brand New Day [Blue Corn Music]
Bobby Rush with Blinddog Smokin’ Decisions [Silver Talon Records]
Best Regional Roots Music Album Bonsoir Catin Light The Stars [Valcour Records]
Best Children’s Album Brady Rymer and the Little Band That Could Just Say Hi! [Bumblin’ Bee Records]
Best Musical Theater Album San Francisco Symphony West Side Story [San Francisco Symphony]
Best Instrumental Composition The Stanley Clarke Band for “Last Train to Sanity” Up [Mack Avenue Records]
Best Arrangement, Instrumental or A Cappella Alfredo Rodriguez for “Guantanamera” The Invasion Parade [Mack Avenue Records]
Best Album Notes Various Artists I’m Just Like You: Sly’s Stone Flower 1969-1970 [Light In The Attic]
Best Historical Album Various Artists Lee Hazlewood Industries: There’s a Dream I’ve Been Saving (1966-1971) [Light In The Attic]
Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance Partch Harry Partch: Plectra and Percussion Dances [Bridge Records, Inc.]
Best Classical Compendium Partch Harry Partch: Plectra and Percussion Dances [Bridge Records, Inc.]
Mike Marshall & The Turtle Island Quartet Mike Marshall & The Turtle Island Quartet [Adventure Music]
Paul Daniel The Solent [Albion Records]
Best Classical Instrumental Solo Leon Fleisher All the Things You Are [Bridge Records, Inc.]
Best Classical Solo Vocal Album Anne Sofie von Otter Douce France [naïve classique]
Florian Boesch Schubert: Die schöne Müllerin, Op. 25, D. 795 [Onyx Classics]
Best Contemporary Classical Composition Orchestra 2001 Complete Crumb Edition, Vol. 16; Voices from the Heartland, Sun and Shadow [Bridge Records, Inc.]

Congratulations to all the nominees! We’ll be cheering for you come February.

Audits, Insights, Music Key: A Look at YouTube’s 2014

December 9, 2014 Featured News, YouTube No Comments

YouTubePlayYouTube’s been up to a lot this year, all culminating in the launch of their long-awaited subscription service, Music Key. To help you pinpoint the highlights, we’ve put together this chronology of YouTube events to note:

January

YouTube launched a new comment management feature, making it easier to flag, remove and reply to all the comments you get on your awesome videos. This was a direct response to channel creators requesting a solution after YouTube nixed their in-app inbox.

February

YouTube turned itself into an honest wom… erm… service by auditing videos and removing fraudulent views. True fan engagement just can’t be bought.

April

Playlists got some love with new data reports in YouTube Analytics. An essential part to your channel’s success, playlists are a great way to increase watch time, encourage a lean-back viewing experience and cross-promote in interesting ways.

May

Fan Insights launched, giving channel creators additional info on their most influential fans. With more than just your standard numbers, but not enough to put you in the creep-zone, Fan Insights allow you to create Google+ circles of your top fans and reward them in a personalized way for their support.

June

Just as February brought on view audits, June followed suit with subscriber reviews. YouTube removed all inactive accounts from subscriber numbers, inducing a slight dip in subs that month for most channels, but giving you a more accurate picture of your channel as a whole.

July

With mobile-everything growing in spades, YouTube launched a Creator Studio app to open up basic channel management and analytics on-the-go. Because who wants to wait until they get home to see the latest view count on that new video?

August

It’s not just mobile though, smart TVs are making themselves indispensable these days too. So YouTube improved its TV app – starting with Xbox One — with better navigation and channel pages.

October

YouTube’s Creator Academy is awesome. If you haven’t looked through it yet, you now have no excuse: as of October, it’s available in 20 new languages, including French, German, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Turkish, Russian and more.

November

Music Key lands to wrap up the year’s big events. Launched in the U.S., U.K., Finland, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain, Music Key offers features like art tracks, album playlists, topic channels and more. We’ve written about the launch, and gone into more detail on each feature, too.

That’s it! Pretty good year, YouTube. Looking forward to seeing what you have up your sleeve in 2015!

3 Creative Album Release Strategies for Artists at Any Level

December 8, 2014 Featured News, Marketing No Comments

Sonicbids_ReleaseStrategiesThis article, written by Founder of New Artist Model, Dave Kusek, originally appeared on Sonicbids. We’re excited to be working with them to exchange industry tips and trends for your business!

Today, with all the new technology and different ways to reach your fans, there are more ways to release your music than you can count. As cool as it may be to have all these options, it’s sometimes hard to decide which release strategy is best for you and your music career. After all, not everyone can successfully release a secret album like Beyoncé – it requires a certain fan base size and dedication.

All these options, however, mean that you can really create a music release strategy that engages and excites your fans. The release strategy you use depends on your career level, fanbase size, online presence, genre, and career focus. For example, a band that really emphasizes their live shows may devise a different strategy than a band with a bigger fanbase that connects mostly online via YouTube covers and other videos. In this article, we’ll explore three different album release strategies and the pros and cons of each.

1. The constant release

This strategy isn’t an “album release” as we traditionally know it, but many musicians these days – especially those in the early stages of their careers – are putting it to good use. Instead of releasing one album once a year, shorten the cycle to just one song release once a month, every two months, or whatever you can manage. Each individual release will have its own mini-marketing plan that’s executed online with social media, your website, your email list, and your connections with bloggers and other influencers.

This strategy is great for musicians just starting out and/or with smaller fanbases. By constantly releasing, you’re staying at the front of fans’ minds and giving them more opportunities to engage, share, and purchase. This strategy also works great for cover songs. Karmin, Pomplamoose, and Pentatonix have all used this strategy to great effect on YouTube to grow their following and reach new fans.

On its own, this strategy may not be the best option for a more established band. Releasing one song at a time might not drive the amount of revenue you need to tour extensively and pay team members like your manager. Many artists will combine a more traditional album release with a constant cover strategy to maintain fans’ awareness while they’re in the studio or on tour. This can be a very important technique that you can use from time to time to keep your audience engaged.

2. The secret release

We’ve seen many established artists pull off the secret album release strategy recently. Perhaps the most famous was Beyoncé’s self-titled album, which was released on iTunes in December of 2013 without any build-up. As the name implies, you release your album with no pre-promotion or marketing. If you want to turn it into a bit of a mystery or scavenger hunt, you could release a few cleverly hidden hints on social media.

The secret release is a really cool way to give your fans something really unexpected and exciting and incentivizes them to share and spread the secret. It can even spread like social media wildfire if executed correctly. But if you’re just starting out and haven’t reached the point where you can tour nationally, this probably isn’t the strategy for you. For this strategy to work, you need to have a large, engaged, and dedicated fanbase that will share the news. Without these elements in place, your secret album release could remain entirely a secret with absolutely no one knowing about it or buying it – not a good situation.

3. The exclusive preview

It’s pretty common to release a single as a preview to your album before the official release date. You can step this up a notch, however, and make that preview exclusive to help drive engagement. You can choose to make it secret by hiding it in a game or app, or hosting a secret show previewing the album to drive word-of-mouth and social media engagement. On the other end of the spectrum, you can use the album preview to drive revenue to your live show.

This is a strategy that both established artists and those who are just starting out can utilize. To give you some creative ideas for how to execute it, look into how Skrillex previewed the album Recess exclusively on the Alien Ride app, or how Coldplay released lyrics early in the form of a scavenger hunt in libraries across the globe. If you’re further along in your career, you might be able to create a helpful partnership with a company, game, or app to preview your music. You could also give prominent and influential bloggers an exclusive preview just for their readers.

If you’re in the early stages of your career, you can still use exclusive previews, but you may need to simplify your approach. For instance, The Wild Feathers released their album early at their live shows in the week leading up to the official release. On top of that, each album sold at their live shows included two CDs – one to keep and one to share. This strategy incentivized fans to buy tickets to the show and buy the album – that’s hitting two different revenue streams with one stone! You could work with bloggers to exclusively release your album, too. Target bloggers that write about artists at your career level.

Breaking Down YouTube Music Key (A Bit!)

December 8, 2014 Featured News, YouTube No Comments

YTKeyYouTube, YouTube, oh YouTube. Why are you so complicated?

On November 12th, YouTube officially launched their much talked about subscription service. Since then I’ve had more than a few people ask me what it looks like, how it will it work and what the overall concept is. In short, it’s about a better consumer experience and another revenue stream for rights holders.

But YouTube sometimes feels like a complex web that can be difficult to get your head around. I mean, first there was UGC. Then there were partner channels. And now there’s YouTube Music Key. For anyone who already has the basics nailed, then you can probably skip this post. If however you’re feeling a little (or a lot!) bamboozled by the whole thing, I’m going to try to break it down — A BIT. This should be a starting point from which you can then build and fine-tune your YouTube Music Key knowledge.

So let’s go back to basics. First there was User-Generated Content or “UGC.” You know, Lizzy Hair uploads a video of her pet stick insect dancing around on its… stick… to ermm… Thin Lizzy. But I own the rights to Thin Lizzy [you wish], how dare that user steal my music? Oh hang on, YouTube has this clever audio fingerprinting technology that matches the video to my track and then places adverts and pays me for it. OK, as you were weird people on YouTube. Use my tracks until your heart’s content. I think we’ve all got our heads round that. Old news.

Then came channels and partnered channels, either directly with YouTube or via a Multi Channel Network or “MCN,” such as The Orchard. Now I can upload my official videos to my own channel and earn revenue on two sides — both audio and visual (even if it’s a static image). My MCN helps increase subscribers, strategise and program the channel and generally create a premium space that’s more appealing to advertisers, which in turn generates more money. And now I treat the whole thing like a social network and make it part of my frontline release campaign. I’m making more money and connecting with my audience on YouTube. Excellent.

So what the #&@$ is YouTube Music Key all about and what do I need to know? I mean, I know it’s a subscription service like Spotify or Rdio, but what’s the difference, how does it work and how can I check it out?

Well, first things first it’s important to make a distinction between YouTube as we know it and YouTube Music Key, which should be considered two separate entities, even though there is no real distinction on the platform itself and therefore, for the end user. We at The Orchard (along with other distributors) have delivered your catalogue to YouTube, as we do for any other digital retailer. YouTube has done two main things with this freshly delivered catalogue:

  1. Each track delivered has been turned into an “art track,” which is the officially delivered high quality audio and artwork and looks like this. YouTube also groups art tracks as albums like this. So now the user can listen to a complete album as they would do on other services. One of the main differences with Music Key is that where an official music video exists (delivered via a partnered artist channel), that video slots in to replace the “art track” in the album playlist. Note tracks 3, 5 & 7 on the Metronomy album.
  2. YouTube has created “Topic Channels” for artists, which are essentially a place where all interesting and relevant content from an artist lives, including “art tracks,” premium videos and even popular UGC content. Think of Topic Channels like artist pages on other services. Example: Metronomy Topic Channel

… Continue Reading

Freeloader Friday: Noah Wall, The Cabana Kids, Naomi Pilgrim & More

December 5, 2014 Freeloader Friday No Comments

888831944690Happy Belated Thanksgiving, folks! A week late, as this office was gettin’ down on some turkey & dressing, but there’s always time to give thanks, nonetheless. Speaking of, there’s a brand-spankin’ new list of musical goodness you can be thankful for this weekend! It’s short and sweet, and will keep you groovin’ until Monday.

Noah Wall is our album streamer of the week. He’s out with the soundtrack he composed for Print the Legend, a sweet doc that covers many questions I’m sure you have about this whole 3-D printing world. Wall aligns his repertoire with the movie’s theme, creating a fully instrumental album reflecting the wonder, uncertainty and intrigue brought on by this new-age evolution.

Next up, the good ol’ boys from Quiet Life have a not-so quiet new tune for you. Their deluxe edition of previously-released “Wild Pack” features some new jangles, one having a rambler-gambler sort of wail to it. The Cabana Kids follow suit: their track has a Folksy twang to it, but also incorporates a bit of Shoe-Gaze Pop to get a good ounce of melodrama into the track.

As for music videos? Well, you can never have too many of those. Naomi Pilgrim takes a bit of a spiritual journey through the desert, Communions gives us an inside look into the life and legend of their “terrifyingly good-looking” Scandinavian selves (friends included), and Bad Cop does what only Bad Cop can do: mold a hairy beast of a man (think Bigfoot) into a news reporter’s lover. Weird as can be, but stupidly cool.

That’s it, Freeloaders! Like I told you, short and sweet this week. But that should keep you busy until Monday. Have a great weekend!

Noah Wall: Full album stream via Ad Hoc
Print the Legend out now on Driftless Recordings

Quiet Life: “Big Mistake” track premiere via Brooklyn Vegan
Wild Pack – Deluxe Edition out now on Mama Bird Recording Co.

The Cabana Kids: “Sortida” track premiere via The Wild Honey Pie
The Birds & The Bees out now on Small Plates Records

Naomi Pilgrim: “It’s All Good” official music video premiere via The Line of Best Fit
It’s All Good out now on Cosmos

Communions: “Love Stands Still” official music video premiere via Stereogum
So Long Sun / Love Stands Still out now on Tough Love Records

Bad Cop: “Wish You Well” official music video premiere via Impose
Wish You Well … And Goodbye out now on Jeffery Drag Records

About The Orchard

The Orchard is a pioneering music, video and film distribution company and top-ranked Multi Channel Network operating in more than 25 global markets. Founded in 1997, we empower businesses and creators in the entertainment industry.

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