Tag Archives: Lady Gaga

Clear Channel, iHeartRadio Are In It To Win It

Clear Channel and Bob Pittman are going all out with the launch of their “New iHeartRadio.” For months Pittman has been promising a new and improved Clear Channel streaming platform. The New iHeartRadio will deliver to users the nation’s most popular broadcast radio stations as well as the ability to create custom stations with even more songs and more control than the leading custom radio station services.

The new service will launch with a bang – Clear Channel is using its clout and record label relationships to promote the launch The New iHeartRadio with “the largest concert event in radio history.” The event will take place at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on two consecutive nights, September 23 and 24.

The lineup for the concert event is truly impressive, including many big names such as Lady Gaga, Steven Tyler, The Black Eyed Peas, Jane’s Addiction, Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, Rascal Flatts, Jennifer Lopez and more. It will be hosted by Ryan Seacrest, the popular host of American Idol. In fact the lineup has a distinctly “Idol” flavor, probably thanks to Clear Channel’s relationship with Simon Fuller, creator of that show.

“This underscores Clear Channel’s transformation to a dynamic integrated media and entertainment company with an unmatched reach in the US,” said Bob Pittman, Chairman of Media and Entertainment Platforms for Clear Channel Radio. The New iHeartRadio will offer users a much broader, more integrated and customized digital listening experience than any other service available – and it’s all in one product.”

Live audio and video streams of the iHeartRadio Music Festival will be available online and listeners will be able to enter to win tickets as well. “This is a once in a generation gathering of artists and fans from all over the country for a true, must-see music event,” said Ryan Seacrest, host of American Idol and Clear Channel Radio Personality.

While I haven’t seen the platform, I have to agree that the launch is impressive. It’s the kind of thing that a company like Clear Channel, with established recording artists relationships and an expansive network of broadcast and digital offerings, should be doing.

Pittman has made no bones about his ambitions with regard to Internet radio, he’s had his sights set on Pandora for a while. The new service will reportedly offer more interactivity than Pandora in terms of song skipping, something that Pandora currently limits to 2 songs an hour. iHeartRadio will also offer its service ad-free through the end of the year.

A very interactive Internet radio service with a high caliber kickoff is something I’d expect from a major media giant who thinks Internet radio is looking pretty good. I’m thinking Clear Channel and iHeartRadio just might be in it to win it…

Musicians Get The Power Of Twitter

The Top Ten most followed people using Twitter are mostly musicians. Six of the top ten Twitter users with the most followers are musicians, according to Twitalyzer. Not surprisingly, Lady Gaga leads the pack at number one with more than ten million followers. She’s got lots of clout, influence and impact, according to the social media ranking service, but little generosity, meaning she seldom or never retweets other people’s tweets.

Other musicians with lots of Twitter power are Justin Bieber, Britney Spears, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift and Shakira, with six million followers. Non-musician folks in the top ten are Barack Obama, Kim Kardashian, Ellen DeGeneres and Ashton Kutcher.

Lady Gaga used Twitter yesterday to build excitement for the release on iTunes of her new song, tweeting about it and establishing a hashtag so listeners could talk about it.

Twitter is a powerful platform that enables musicians to personalize their image and connect directly with their fans. Like everything else, there’s an art to it, and using it well can have great rewards.

Last.fm Knows Who’s Listening

Last.fm’s US audience grew 90% over the past twelve months, according to a post in the UK based Guardian’s digital blog. According to David Goodman, president of CBS interactive music, Last.fm’s US audience has risen from 3.5 million monthly uniques 12 months ago to 8 million now.

Goodman discussed plans for continued growth in both Europe and the US, including ads for the service in the London Underground, and further integration of Last.fm’s features across all CBS properties.

CBS has access to lots of listener data by virtue of Last.fm’s scrobbling feature which tracks each user’s musical taste by recording details of the songs the user listens to, either from Internet radio stations, or the user’s computer or many portable music devices. Goodman aims to see that data become the defacto source of what people are listening to.

Last.fm Trends offers great listening info – it makes lots of sense that CBS stations would integrate the content into their online and on-air offerings. For example, last week’s rising artists chart shows Danger Mouse and Sparklehorse up 571% with 42, 429 listeners. Meanwhile, Lady Gaga tops the Top Tracks chart, Alejandro saw 133,877 plays; and The Beatles were the top artist with 1,199,995 plays.

It’s interesting stuff, this data tracking. Goodman and CBS are wise to gather it and offer it up to their own stations and others. In April, CBS announced that Last.fm would stop on-demand song streaming and emphasize its personalized radio station streaming services as well as its scrobbling and social features that focus on the buzz around songs and artists. Which of course will keep folks buzzing about Last fm as well..

Internet Radio Stations Play More Artists Than Broadcast Stations

The number of unique artists played on Internet radio stations is more than 32 times the number of unique artists played on broadcast/terrestrial radio. According to data supplied by streamSerf, a company that monitors and reports on music played on terrestrial, Internet and satellite radio stations, last month broadcast radio stations played 25,399 unique artists (US, including public radio stations) while Internet radio stations played 829,971 unique artists in the same time period!

“There is room for a more diverse, less centralized music scene in the world today – and this is being created and facilitated by technology and internet radio.” says Paul Mockenhaupt, Founder of streamSerf. streamSerf is an important tool that enables independent artists who are marketing their music on the Internet to track their success.  “streamSerf.com is the ONLY tool available for these artists to measure their efforts, track their spins, plan their tours, validate their promotional campaigns, find stations that play [similar] music, check their royalty payments, etc.”

It’s not shocking to learn that Internet radio is more diverse. There are more choices for the listener, and more determination by the stations themselves to provide alternative music to the basic cookie-cutter formats and playlists provided on broadcast radio. It is stunning to learn that Internet radio’s list of unique artists is greater than broadcast radio’s by 3600%. (It should be noted that these stats do not even include stations that stream individualized channels, such as Pandora.)

Also interesting is the list of artists that get the most plays on broadcast stations versus Internet radio stations. While some of the top ten artists are the same on either list, others are very different:

courtesy of streamSerf

courtesy of streamSerf

According to Mockenhaupt, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. He says the real story isn’t in the top 10, or even the top 1000…” it’s the new, fresh, undiscovered, local, home grown music that’s filling the internet airwaves!” Internet radio gives voice to the long tail of music, providing entry for many musicians that have never had a platform before. That, he says, is the “magic” of Internet radio…

%d bloggers like this: