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The Orchard & DHX Media Are Your Kids’ Source of Entertainment

1379978_697772623585922_1456916551_nKids (and parents, for that matter): you’re gonna love this. We’re partnering with DHX Media to bring the globe the best in children’s entertainment! That means we’ll be your worldwide source for over 8,000 episodes of much-loved shows like Arthur, Care Bears, Yo Gabba Gabba!, Madeline and tons more.

But we’re not stopping there! When DHX adds a new series to their roster, we’ll be the ones distributing those to you, too, along with the 2,000+ tracks of kids tunes that DHX currently holds in their library. So have no fear for those summer road trips this year! The kids will be fully entertained in the backseat on the way to grandma’s with all the options we’re dishing out.

To find out more about the deal itself, check out our official press release. Now go flip through the DHX library to find out what you and your family will be watching tonight!

Unleashing Toto XIV: First New Record in 10 Years

TotoAfter a wait of nearly a decade, Toto has released new music in the form of TOTO XIVtheir 13th record release and their third new album since the turn of the century.

The sheer dedication and hard work that Toto put into this new record will not leave fans disappointed. Though it’s technically the follow-up to their 2006 record, Falling In Between, the band considers this to be more of a response to TOTO IV, the record that gave them world-wide recognition. With everything from Progressive Rock and Jazz to Pop and Blues, the album embodies the band perfectly and the music reflects the classic sound that fans know and love.

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Can’t Get Enough of Butch Walker

ButchWalkerAfter welcoming Dangerbird Records to The Orchard family, I think we can speak for the whole team when we say we were very excited to work with the label’s extensive and acclaimed catalog, starting with the multi-talented Butch Walker.

As soon as we heard Butch’s Afraid Of Ghosts was to be our first release with Dangerbird, we digital retail marketing folk jumped to promote it to our accounts. As a singer/songwriter titan deeply rooted into Rock and Roll’s rich soil, Butch really lets his music speak for itself, weaving intimate stories of love, loss and life into a unique tapestry of lyrical imagery. This recipe resulted in a massive amount of coverage of the album its first week in stores, and ultimately a spot at #1 on Billboard’s Top New Artist Albums chart.

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Congrats To Our 2015 Grammy Awards Winners!

RickyKejWouterKellermanGrammysLast night, all music-lovers and creators — well, almost — watched one of the year’s biggest events in music: The 57th Annual Grammy Awards. Some of us were lucky enough to attend in person — here’s lookin’ at you Colleen and Laura, our COO and Latin American Regional Manager who doubles as Chair of the Latin Grammys — while the rest of us watched from our living rooms (or if you’re like me, treadmills).

Of course, at The Orchard, we were rooting for our slew of nominated artists, many of whom didn’t actually get air time last night (there’s a whole score of wins that get awarded pre-prime time!), but who still deserve the highest praise for their accomplishments.

Speaking of, we tip our hats to our four big winners:

Anne Sofie von Otter for her album Douce France [naïve classique], who snagged the Grammy for Best Classical Solo Vocal Album

Wouter Kellerman & Ricky Kej for their album Winds of Samsara [Raveolution Studios], which took the title of Best New Age Album

Ziggy Marley for Fly Rasta [V2 Records Benelux], which brought home the award for Best Reggae Album

Partch for Harry Partch: Plectra and Percussion Dances, which won Best Classical Compendium

The whole night was full of epic performances, important messages and cringe-worthy moments but honestly, would we expect any less? Check out the full list of winners on the Grammy website, browse through photos and fashion, or just read a nice good recap courtesy of the NY Times.

The Holidays Are For Box Sets: Finding the Future Through the Past

MachineHead_BloodstoneDiamonds“I wish I could have seen The Cure back then,” my friend Xio said to me the other day. “When I was 13 in 1996, my diary was full of crush notes to Robert Smith.” Xio went on to see The Cure a couple of times, and Depeche Mode too. Of course today, both bands have achieved a legendary status, enough to justify multiple box sets of singles, rarities, remixes, live performances and such. And right now, the holiday gift giving season is the time for the latest avalanche of super deluxe box sets in the physical realm.

With so much of our business moving to digital and especially streaming, you’d think the days of these pricey coffee table heavyweight packages would be over. But as art objects in and of themselves, box sets bring an immersive fan experience that is qualitatively different than streaming some of those same tracks on Spotify. They are an excuse to celebrate our inner geekdom and obsessiveness to the smallest details. Like Jimmy Page’s more prominent acoustic guitar in the Sunset Sound Mix of “Stairway To Heaven” on Led Zeppelin’s just reissued/remastered IV Deluxe (aka ZOSO), or the instrumental versions of some of your Zep classics on I-IV before Robert Plant added his vocals. Really? I never heard John Paul Jones’ keyboard part in there before! Or the improved stereo imaging and fine sonic detail in Bruce Springsteen’s classic The River, just issued this week (as part of The Album Collection 1973-1984.)

But it’s not just a question of sharper bass with more low frequencies or a kick drums that you can feel in your chest vs. fairly HQ 320 kbps MP3s that are easy to purchase. Let’s face it, no one reads 20 page liner notes by veteran Rock writers like David Fricke or Greil Marcus online about all the minutiae involving The Velvet Underground Super Deluxe with its 3 different mixes of the same album or Bob Dylan & The Band Basement Tapes Complete with multiple versions of the same song in different tempos or styles. It’s a different listening experience sitting at home on a Saturday afternoon reading the book while the music plays than rocking some tunes on your smartphone on a bus or a subway on your way to work. Something vinyl lovers have long known as well.

As the physical realm continues to adapt to the realities of the modern niche market place, box sets are where record labels can recoup on long-term investments and trend setting cult artists can finally grab some of the mainstream attention they’ve long deserved. Like British Invasion-influenced Pop masters Big Star finally getting their due with multiple box sets, reissues and a fine documentary, “Nothing Can Hurt Me,” after years of only being acknowledged by fellow musicians and indie trailblazers like The Replacements. Today, the simple act of physically compiling brings streaming attention to the new classics, such that Paul Westerberg, Tommy Stinson and company can play their college radio “underground hits” to packed stadium sing alongs decades later, as many of us witnessed in Forest Hills, NY this past summer.

In the last few years we’ve seen a wide range of large box sets from icons like The ClashWoody Guthrie, Johnny Cash and even Judas Priest. The real question is who are today’s musical heroes that will be compiled in the years ahead? Will LCD Soundsystem ever merit a reissue like Underworld’s 5 CD Super Deluxe Dubnobasswithmyheadman including live rehearsals by an Electronica group in the act of composition? Are Machine Head destined to become the next Judas Priest or Metallica? Or will they be this generation’s Diamond Head spearheading the mostly under the radar NWOBHM (that’s new wave of British Heavy Metal) and thereby influencing every major Thrash/Speed Metal act in their wake? Will Eminem and Jay Z ever be anthologized like James Brown was on the 4 Funk-filled Star Time CDs? And can the Foo Fighters, Maroon 5 and even Nickelback transcend their mass appeal to reach Journey’s guilty pleasures God-like status for stadium anthems? “Don’t Stop Believin’…”

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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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