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Friday, February 27, 2009


From our roving road reporter Scoop Asphalt:
In a move that was made without consulting artists, Warner Reprise has pulled all Warner-Reprise videos from You Tube. This is apparently part of a negotiating strategy the label is engaging in while making some sort of deal with You Tube.

Since there has been no communication from the label to the artists, it is not known by artists what the deal is about or how it impacts the artists.

One thing the artists do know is that one of the best ways of communicating with the people has been pulled out from under them. This has an impact that will affect all artists who make videos.

To many artists, You Tube and the internet are the new radio.

Videos are now the way artists communicate with the audience, letting the people know when they have anew record to release.

Neil Young’s latest video, “Fork in the Road”, is among the new videos pulled. It is a video that has had well over 100,000 hits and continues to grow. The impact of it being pulled with a new album (CD/DVD/BLURAY) of the same title due in weeks is immeasurable but it is certainly a negative impact.

Artists at the label have organized and will be issuing a joint statement publicly on Monday if the issue is not resolved.

According to Lookout management, Young’s representative, a meeting between the label and You Tube is underway today, Friday February 27th.

Neil Young has been a Warner artist for 40 years and his current contract with Reprise records for new product has been fulfilled.

What an outrage.

And the music industry wonders why it is in decline? It is by alienating the most core, loyal supporters and customers.

Also, Neil is clearly pissed given his concluding observation. Doesn't look like he's going back to WB. maybe a new label???

Fork In The Road from Shakey Pictures on Vimeo.

Probably the key line of Neil's memo is: "To many artists, You Tube and the internet are the new radio.". Streaming video killed the radio star.

So just like with Napster and MP3 files, the content just moves along the internet. The record company clowns just don't understand that the videos on YouTube will just move to other services like Vimeo. We're sure Vimeo is celebrating WB's move.

Will this be the second time in a decade that the music business totally blows a golden opportunity to save itself? Given how the industry played its hand last time, we'll bet that this is the last dying gasp of the traditional music industry. But maybe they'll light a candle?

More on reaction to Neil Young's "Fork In the Road" video.

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At 2/27/2009 07:12:00 PM, Blogger Mother Nature on the Run said...

Oh Wow! It's a trap. Uncle Dick is behind this over that song Neil wrote a while back!!

At 2/27/2009 07:39:00 PM, Blogger Tatersmama said...

Well, I'll just be switching to Vimeo then. Pure and simple.

Tatersmama in Oz

At 2/27/2009 08:07:00 PM, Blogger tim said...

I wonder how this might affect the release of the Archives plus other future NY releases?

At 2/27/2009 08:21:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The big bad corporations are being big and bad again. Oh my...! Let's get them.

At 2/27/2009 09:17:00 PM, Blogger Greg McGarvey said...

I didn't even notice that last sentence until you pointed it out. VERY interesting.

At 2/27/2009 09:57:00 PM, Anonymous Spanky-J said...

vimeo is sooo much cooler anyways. much better content

At 2/27/2009 10:22:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heard Neil about this on his Drive today with Lincvolt. Regarding the fact that WB's was one, if not the first to sign a deal with youtube...and since then other Company's have signed far better deals regarding their Artists.
Hence the WB, youtube meetings today to get a better deal...level the playing field so to speak...for their (WB) Artists.
Makes sense to me and I don't think Neil is going anywhere after the last foray away from Reprise.
Just my opinion. LIVE RUST

At 2/27/2009 10:59:00 PM, Anonymous Shittyhorse said...

I think the archives will still be out considering all the work that was already put into them...though I do wish we'd hear from ARCHIVES GUY soon...its been a while.
I think WB should get a good deal...I mean YOUTUBE is huge! And all their product is almost totally free to them (at least it used to be) they should have to pay something! I realize the artist looks at it like radio and it is really important to them...but the record companies are a Company they are there to make money and right now they need to do what they can to bring in some cash. They have a lot of contracts to honor. I don't think Neil should or will leave Reprise considering they have almost ALWAYS stood beside him and let him have that amount of creative freedom but I'm no insider and one can never know what's happening in these times...I just hope there is always somewhere Neil can go to put out HIS product as HE sees fit...
'Keep on Rolling Numbers for the road in the Free World'

At 2/28/2009 08:16:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Thrasher,
Some Breaking news for your site.

Neil is coming to Europe again!!!
Barcelona May 30 confirmed!
Nottingham June 23 confirmed!

Ther's along gap between May 30 and June 23...

Johnny Magic is a song about Johnathan Goodwin!

You can listen to the song and the FITR album over here:

Because Sound Matters

At 2/28/2009 08:59:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey gang,
Feel free to put Fork In The Road back up on Youtube well as elsewhere on the Web.

-Lionel Wrench

At 2/28/2009 09:57:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Canada and Europe? What about the states Neil! ? Come back to Wallingford Neil!

At 2/28/2009 10:01:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Thrasher misses the point. Here's what Neil has to say on his own website:

By Neil Young, Reprise recording artist
Warner Reprise records was one of the very first to embrace You Tube. You Tube was in its fledgling stages when Warner made an early deal to work with them. Today, other labels have made more lucrative deals for their artists at You Tube.
So You Tube is the new radio.....but not quite.
Radio used to introduce music to the masses and was crucial to every new release, with identical compensation for every artist and label. Since You Tube has given some labels better deals that others, the Media Giant is treating artists unequally, depending on which label they are on.
Today's web world has created a new way. Artists today can go directly to the people. There is nothing standing between the artists and their audience. Freedom of expression reigns. People today feel that they should be able to get all the music and art that they want, from the artists who they appreciate. When that conduit is broken, the connection is weakened.
If all artists were compensated equally, and the people decided who had the hits and misses by virtue of number of downloads and plays, there could be no grounds for disagreement that would cause the facilitator of the art to break the conduit between an artist and an audience. That is what has happened to Warner Bros artists caught in You Tube's web. You Tube has a responsibility to respect the artists it facilitates and resist punishing them to make a business point.
It is time for industry wide standards of artist's compensation on the web.
Reprise and Warner Bros artists deserve what artists from other labels are getting. Let the people decide what constitutes success. Warner Bros and Reprise are looking for a level playing field. Until they get one, these problems may not go away. That is the essence of the issue between Warner Bros Reprise and You Tube.

At 2/28/2009 10:02:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait a minute! Is Neil Himself writing on this web site? Who is Lionel Wrench?

At 2/28/2009 10:06:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...




Davie from Scotland

At 2/28/2009 10:12:00 AM, Anonymous Shittyhorse said...

I really like the sound of FITR...thanks for posting that link...All the songs sound great...Light a Candle, cough up the bucks. I think Neil did a great job. Were all of these tunes recorded in NY, NY?


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