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Andrew Flanagan

Last year, Kanye West's tour in support of his album The Life of Pablo was inarguably star-crossed. On Oct. 2, West's wife, Kim Kardashian-West, was robbed at gunpoint in Paris, resulting in the cancellation of two shows (one which of which he walked out mid-set after hearing the news). Seven weeks later, the producer and rapper was admitted to the UCLA Neuropsychiatric Hospital for eight days. As a result, West canceled the rest of the scheduled tour.

It's accurate, but not entirely helpful, when thinking about the business of music to imagine in your mind a tangled knot about the size of an elephant. The free ends, rope made up of different gauges and materials, trail out from its center, resembling an asterisk. Holding each is a representative from one of the industry's many stakeholders — record labels and publishing companies, legislators and record store owners, tech companies and non-profit advocates. Oh, and artists too.

Quincy Jones has prevailed in a case he launched nearly four years ago against MJJ Productions, the record label founded by Michael Jackson, and Sony Music, over the "disguising" of royalties and breach of his contracts with Michael Jackson. In yesterday's decision, a jury in Los Angeles Superior Court awarded Jones $9.4 million.

"Despacito," the worldwide hit from Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee which just last week was touted as the most-streamed song to date, has now become the subject of a surprise appropriation by Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro.

On Tuesday, two separate lawsuits were filed against Spotify in Nashville's federal court over a single issue. Both Bluewater Music, an independent publisher and copyright administration company, and Robert Gaudio, a founding member of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons – and a songwriter behind the enduring hits "Sherry" and "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" — accuse the streaming service of improperly licensing song compositions.

"Despacito," the Spanish-language summer smash by Puerto Rican stars Luis Fonsi and "king of reggaetón" Daddy Yankee, is now the most-streamed song in history.

A four-part, nearly five-hour documentary film that began airing on HBO earlier this month, The Defiant Ones functions as a quintessentially modern-American bildungsroman. Its broadcaster describes it as "a master class in how to work your way up from the bottom to beyond your wildest dreams." But stories like these — here, of the hip-hop legend Dr. Dre, born Andrew Young, and the record producer and music executive Jimmy Iovine — never are. If one possesses the talent and drive, they don't need to take notes.

Last night the penultimate season of Game of Thrones (the gravestone-final piece of monoculture we'll share until Star Wars returns at the end of the year) began, bringing fans wary of ceaseless political imbroglios and the impending threa

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

And now with a bit of music news. The king has been dethroned.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "GANGNAM STYLE")

PSY: (Singing in Korean).

SHAPIRO: For just about five years, this music video was the top viewed video on YouTube.

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