Spotify Asia Off To Promising Start
Two days after Spotify announced it’s first launches in Asia - via Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore - and it looks like they are off to a good start, making strong entries in the various iTunes Free App stores: Hong Kong iTunes, April 18th: Singapore iTunes, April 18th: Malaysia iTunes, April 18th: It is interesting to note the absence of an “Unlimited” tier,...
Intrigue In The Chinese Digital Music Industry :...
Image credit: Sohu Something is afoot in the Chinese digital music space. At the end of last year we saw a number of major music services including QQ Music, Baidu Music, Kugou and Duomi - having apparently reached a private agreement - publicly announce they would all be charging for their music services in the very near future (a Dec 31st 2012 deadline was mentioned but evidently not adhered...
Social Media Panel At Bookworm Literary Festival
L to R: Ed Peto (Outdustry), Hu Yong (ChinaFile), Duncan Hewitt (BBC/Newsweek). Photo Courtesy of the Bookworm Literary Festival Last week I was asked to moderate a panel at the Bookworm Literary Festival here in Beijing. The panel was called “Future Perfect : Social Media” and was described thusly by the organisers: “Due to governmental and technological restraints,...
News Link : QQ Music Activate Hardware Strategy...
“Chinese Internet giant Tencent is trying out a new hardware strategy for its QQ Music service, starting with a collaboration with wireless music system Sonos. Sina Tech has noticed a new teaser page at Faxian.51buy.com for a QQ Music-compatible Sonos setup. Late last year, Tencent’s digital music team announced its vision to expand its music service to dedicated music hardware through...
News Link : China Hopes To Duplicate World's Music...
“According to the 2012 Report on Chinese Pop Music Market released by the China Record Working Committee, “the physical market has practically disappeared, while the new digital music market has not given record companies their due shares The traditional recording industry is in great depression.” The report says that the revenue of physical format sales in China has declined...
News Link : Samsung Tops China Smartphone Market
“Samsung’s rise in China was at the expense of rival phone maker Nokia. The Finnish phone maker, which was No. 1 in 2011 with 29.9 percent market share, plunged to 3.7 percent last year to take seventh place, according to the research. The No. 2 smartphone brand in China for 2012 was PC maker Lenovo, with 13.2 percent market share, which represented a 4 percent growth from the year...
Majors Settle With Sogou MP3 Search
As search engine for Chinese mega portal Sohu, Sogou presents a familiar sight for Chinese internet music searchers: Instant, well ordered lists of direct “deep links” to MP3 search results, purportedly hosted on third party sites, available for free download. Rights owners have typically been excluded from any revenue from ads sold around these search results, meaning that MP3...
News Link : New Youtube Asia Pop Channel
“YouTube has just launched a devoted Asia Pop channel that will showcase the hottest pop music across the region – and give fans a chance to scream deliriously at their idols via Google+ Hangouts.” - TechInAsia
News Link : Lenovo 'iTunes' On It's Way For China?
“So is there a Lenovo iTunes equivalent on the way, especially in China where the company’s “protect and attack” strategy has the firm aggressively fighting Apple and Samsung for dominance in all-things Internet from PCs and tablets to smartphones and smart TVs? “Jerry Yang brings good quality Internet experience to a hardware company which has ambitions to harvest...
China Set To Become World's Largest Smartphone...
“Based on data from more than 275k mobile apps using its tools, Flurry estimates that in January, there were 222m active iOS and Android smartphones and tablets in the US, and 221m in China – but that by the end of this month, there’ll be 246m in China and 230m in the US.” - Music Ally
Sterling Sound China Visit
Last month saw a whirlwind three day visit from our clients Sterling Sound in which Outdustry arranged a hectic meeting schedule with the creme de la creme of the Chinese record production business. L to R : Murat Aktar (Sterling Sound President), Tom Coyne (Sterling Sound Senior Mastering Engineer - Adele, Beyonce, Justin Bieber, PSY, Jay Z etc etc), Zhang Yadong (Dong Music), Ed Peto...
Google China Music Search Closes
google.cn/music as of this morning: “Google music search service has been turned off. Please log in and download saved playlists before October 19th” Google China have just announced (Chinese) the closing down of their pioneering music search service in China. Opening it’s doors in early 2009, the service partnered with Top100 to offer a free and legal music search service for...
Yan Jun @ Outdustry HQ
flyer by been 颜峻的私人客厅巡游刚刚结束，近三个月里，他在不同的私人空间一共顺利地完成了九场演出，参于过的人应该深有体会。在场的观众较容易全心的观看，更自然的静心聆听，更是少了在公共场所的嘈杂且避开了烟酒等社交工具所带来的浓浓气味，或许猜这就是客厅巡演的初衷。 Veteran sound artist Yan Jun has just finished a three-month-long tour of living rooms in Beijing, altogether encompassing nine unique performances, each leaving a deep impression on the people who participated. No noisy distractions of public spaces, no...
Billboard Interview : China Top 5
A few months ago, as part of their Maximum Exposure edition (Sept 26th 2009), Billboard magazine sat down with Outdustry’s Ed Peto to find out 5 good ways to build a bit of presence for your artist in China. Here, printed in full, is the resulting piece by Jonathan Landreth. Rampant piracy and a lack of transparency have long complicated efforts by record labels to do business in China....
MicroMu Presents Fink (Solo Acoustic)
Outdustry’s in-house net-label MicroMu is proud to present a special performance from it’s first international signing, Fink….. As the first acoustic act on legendary electronic label Ninja Tune, Fink has carved a unique path as a singer-songwriter. With a background in downtempo beat production and top level remix work, his brand of acoustic music is distinctly modern while...
Press Release : 贝格集团登陆中国 Beggars China Launch
贝格集团登陆中国 BEGGARS GROUP LAUNCH BEGGARS CHINA 贝格集团继续扩大其全球网络，如今与其在中国的独家代表Outdustry(格外音乐)合作，并推出了一个中文（www.beigecn.com）网站. Continuing to broaden their worldwide network, the Beggars Group are working with Outdustry as their exclusive representatives in Beijing and are also launching a dedicated website for Mandarin speakers (www.beggarschina.com). ...
Chris Anderson has just published his latest book “Free : The Future Of A Radical Price”. In it the Wired Magazine Editor and bestselling author of The Long Tail discusses the economic peculiarities of a world in which goods, services and media are increasingly being made available for what feels like free: How has this happened, and what does it mean going forwards for us both as...
MicroMu Turns 1
Happy Birthday MicroMu It seems like it has been a hell of a lot longer, but our little concept record label MicroMu (known in Chinese as 不插店, or ‘Buchadian’), turns 1 year old today. You can feel paternal pride radiating throughout Outdustry HQ as we package up a one year compilation album of b-sides and rarities to celebrate: MicroMu is our attempt at a sustainable record label...
Interview : Will Page (PRS for Music)
As the Chief Economist for PRS for Music and one of the few actual economists in the music business Will Page has a reputation for providing clarity, both on the state we’re in as an industry as well as the direction we should be heading. PRS for Music is one of the largest collecting societies in the world, representing some 60,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members,...
SPOT Festival 2009
Last weekend I attended SPOT Festival 2009 in rainy/sunny Aarhus, Denmark. The organisers kindly flew me in, along with a number of other international music industry types, to soak up some outstanding up-and-coming Danish artists as well as generally spew forth about our respective markets. As far as Danish bands go, I particularly enjoyed Oh Land’s orchestral experimentation on the...
The Rough Ride For International Live Music In...
As Music Editor at mega portal Sina and man responsible for highly regarded Dystopia blog, Pilos Chan is a keen observer of the Chinese music scene and one of the most respected music writers and critics in China. In this guest post he offers insight into the rise and ‘crash’ of international live music in China. Photo Credits: Sina I was at the “Techno Papa” Juan...
Hedgehog + Re-TROS + Sterling Sound
Outdustry clients Sterling Sound have just mastered a couple of cracking Beijing indie albums. Hedgehog went so far as to say that they “could die happy” after hearing the results:
Google China MP3 Search.....Finally
So, it seems that Google China has finally decided to make some noise (translated story) about their free MP3 search service. When this went into beta almost a year ago we were predicting that it would be game-changing news, but somehow it has remained under the radar. At their press conference today, however, Google China announced that all four major labels are on board, as well as all the major...
Production Project : Hedgehog - Blue Daydreaming...
Artist: Hedgehog (刺猬) Release Title: Blue Daydreaming (Album) Release Date: 2009.03.28 Release Label: Modern Sky Outdustry Client: Sterling Sound Engineer: Tom Coyne (Mastering) Project Client: Modern Sky
CNN Cover Beijing's Rock Scene
The Chinese iTunes Gift Voucher Trick
While there are some legitimate digital music download sites in China - including 9Sky, Top100 and the recently launched Wawawa - digital music is proving to be a tough sell in the P.R.C, partly because of the market dominance of Baidu’s free mp3 search. There are, however, people making decent profit in this as yet unmeasurable market: the hackers of Apple’s iTunes store gift vouchers...
Modern Sky Announce Strawberry Festival
Beijing indie label Modern Sky have announced a new folksy-style event called the “Strawberry Festival” in the Chinese media (Chinese links here, here and on the Modern Sky website). Details are still a little vague but available information so far suggests three stages and 60 bands to be spread over the 1st-3rd of May at the Tongzhou Canal Park in Beijing. Everything else TBC. ...
Li Zhi vs U2
The last release on our in-house label MicroMu has been going down a storm. Li Zhi’s live album, ‘There’s Nobody On Gongti Dong Lu’ was recorded at a packed show in Beijing’s Yugong Yishan venue in mid-January. Since it’s release on Jan 22nd, the Jiangsu folk hero’s first offering since 2007 has been meet met with unanimously glowing reviews across the...
Wham! In China
In April 1985, big-haired pop-duo Wham! took to the Worker’s Gymnasium stage in Beijing infront of thousands of screaming Chinese fans, becoming the first western pop act to play communist China. This unlikely event had taken band manager Simon Napier-Bell 18 months of negotiations to organise; a process documented in his 2005 book I’m Coming To Take You To Lunch. The idea to play...
Diamonds In The Rough
Almost exactly a year ago I posted on the hype surrounding the Chinese music scene. I boiled my feelings down to a kind of cautious optimism ie. way too early to start billing Beijing as one of the best music cities in the world (as some over-zealous mainstream western media would have you think) but a genuinely exciting place to be nonetheless. Now, despite an incredibly tough year for music in...
Network Songs : Life Inside China's Pop...
A shorter, edited version of this piece appeared in The Guardian under the title ‘Online Pop Explosion’. Please treat this longer, draft version as a separate article. When unknown Chinese singer Yang Chengang wrote and recorded the song Mice Love Rice in Wuhan, Southern China in 2000, he would have had no way to predict it’s eventual impact. While the pop ballad languished in...
Olympic Security Hangover : Midi Update
Midi School have just announced (Chinese link) that they will be delaying the festival by another ten days or so. Dates are yet to be confirmed. The official reason is that the government expects millions of Chinese tourists to descend on Beijing during the upcoming October holidays to look around the Olympic facilities, including the Olympic Centre planned for use by Midi. Midi claim that they...
Air To Headline Midi Festival?
As someone who recently spent three months and nearly a thousand pounds in flights, lawyers fees, bribes and fines to just be allowed to remain in the country I am all too aware of the bureaucratic nightmare that is attached to getting anything done in China. I really have to take my hat off to the upcoming Midi and Modern Sky Festivals. As it stands it looks like they are both going ahead even...
A Blog Post About Someone Posting Blog Posts About...
During last month’s Olympics I had the good fortune to be introduced to Matt Yanchyshyn, a visiting IT manager for Associated Press (AP). Roughly four years ago while living in the Senegalese capital of Dakar, Matt started blogging about the music he came across during his travels in the region. It was part of the first wave of audioblogs and “certainly the first to deal with African...
The Next Generation Of Music Consumers
This article originally appeared in Issue 191 (1st May 2008) of the MusicAlly Report. China never fully adopted the “traditional” tools of music discovery and consumption: TV, radio and the print press are all heavily monitored by the government and relatively anodyne as a result; CDs never really gained any meaningful traction; live music events are circuses of permits and arbitrary...
Writing For The Chinese Music Press
In November last year I got a call from a flustered Chinese magazine editor. ‘Would you be able to do an 800 word album review for our December edition?’ she asked, adding ‘by tomorrow?’. Normally I would have turned this down as the money tends to be poor and the deadline was a bit abrupt, but the magazine in question was Rolling Stone China - re-named...
So You Want To Sell Music In China?
Ahead of his MidemNet panel appearance, Mathew Daniel, VP of R2G (digital distribution company) in Beijing has a few observations and words of advice for labels seeking digital licensing opportunities in China: As Olympic hosts and country-of-honor at MIDEM, China’s music industry is an increasingly common feature on the western agenda. There is, however, almost a whiff of the ‘Wild...
China Indie Music Report : TV & Radio
NOTE: This is an extract from ‘Access China’ report, written by Ed Peto, commissioned by UK Trade and Industry Department and British Underground. The Chinese government is acutely aware that TV is the most effective medium for delivering key cultural and political messages. China Central Television (CCTV), the state-run national station, operates a range of channels, which, in the main part, are...
Enter The Dragon : Introduction To The Music...
NOTE : This article originally appeared as ‘Music In China : The Inside Story’ on The Register How To Do Business In China, China CEO, The New Chinese Consumer… my shelves here in Beijing are stacked full of such books, all trying to throw some light on a country and market of seemingly endless allure to the west. A population of 1.3 billion people has marketeers...
Interview : Pissing On The Bamboo Curtain
The Chinese independent music scene can be a hard nut to crack. Non-Chinese-speaking music fans have to be much more determinedly hands on in their approach than elsewhere in the world. Indecipherable band names, poorly recorded and hard-to-find albums and lack of English media coverage are just some of the barriers-to-entry, testing even the most resilient of music fans. New podcast...
China Indie Music Report : Publishing
NOTE: This is an extract from ‘Access China’ report, written by Ed Peto, commissioned by UK Trade and Industry Department and British Underground Publishing is a tricky concept in China. The typical Chinese approach to intellectual property is that ‘ideas belong to everyone’, so while it is difficult to make money out of something tangible like a record or a download, it is VERY difficult...
Don't Begin The Hype...Yet
There’s nothing worse than hyping things up too early. While Billboard magazine saw fit to call Beijing one of the top 5 cities to watch for music in 2007, regular gig-goers here are slightly less sanguine on the subject. This place has a long, long way to go before it can be compared to even the second tier cities in most other developed countries in terms of originality and depth of...
China Indie Music Report : Live Music
NOTE: This is an extract from ‘Access China’ report, written by Ed Peto, commissioned by UK Trade and Industry Department and British Underground The live industry in China has real potential. The annual Midi Festival in Beijing shows that there is a sizeable live audience for western derived independent music, with a crowd of 20,000 moshing, flag-waving, ironic t-shirt wearing,...