Monday, April 30, 2007

What have you been reading, listening to, watching?

What David Byrne Said
Save Net Radio! One of my favorite things about the beginning of the month (give or take a day or 3) is seeing/hearing the new playlist at David Byrne Radio. Because he can, he ponies up about $2,000 a month to pay the royalties that keep the streaming station going. But thanks to a decision from a 3-judge panel, that cost is about to go up.
While traditional terrestrial radio does pay songwriter/publishing royalties for the musical work itself, in the U.S. they don’t pay performance royalties for the sound recording under the rationale that airplay promotes the songs, which benefits the copyright holders. (This determination was mostly due to the radio industry lobbying congress not to collect these royalties.) Web radio, however, along with satellite and cable services, does pay performance royalties — these are the rates that are being raised now. (If this discrepancy sounds illogical, it’s because it is.)
With the proposed changes the royalties can no longer be based on a percentage of revenue, but on a fee for each listening hour — how many folks are listening and for how long — and there will be a minimum fee per radio “channel”. Also, above a certain aggregate listening hour amount, non-profits have to pay the same per-listening hour rates as commercial broadcasters. . . . The threshold for non-profits is proposed to be 159,140 listening hours per month. Where did this bizarre number come from?
New Releases Coming from Old Favorites
Rufus Wainright - Release the Stars (May 15)
They Might Be Giants - Else (July 10)
Black Francis (formerly known as Frank Black, formerly known as Black Francis) - Bluefinger (September)

Unexpected Collaboration
Philip Glass is writing the score for the newest movie by Woody Allen - Cassandra's Dream - due out this fall.

I have to agree with Tim Goodman at the SF Chronicle, whose Sopranos commentary I always anticipate: last night's episode was not the best, although I loved the very end, confusing as it may have been.

"The Overlooked Genius of Twin Peaks' Second Season"
Yes, there was a second season. Slate's Jessica Winter has this piece on the occasion of its awaited release on DVD.

Summer Recommendations?
Of course, I have a million books I haven't read yet - but that's not going to stop me from getting something new to read once school's out in a week or so. What do you suggest?

Box Office Woes
Apparently nobody is going to the movies. You too? I'm not convinced Spiderman can be the single-handed movie savior they seem to expect, but I suppose we'll see. The few people that did see something over the weekend chose these:
1. Disturbia
2. The Invisible
3. Next
4. Fracture
5. Blades of Glory

Lots more Media related stuff to post about today so check back in and as always let us all know what you've been into.

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