Amalgam CEO/MC Anyextee Goes From the Boardroom to the Booth

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Amalgam Digital
Anyextee
In hip-hop's 40 year history, few have been as vilified and demonized as the record executive. With the culture of the four elements seemingly always at odds with "the industry," one executive is finally taking to wax to strike back. This week sees Anyextee, the CEO of Amalgam Digital, put out Executive Decisions,  his debut album where he not only discusses the ins-and-outs of his life, but the stresses that come with running the label home of Max B and, at one point, Lil B and Joe Budden. We spoke to Anyextee about making the transition from the boardroom to the booth.

See also: The 50 Most NYC Albums Ever

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A Handy Flowchart For Selecting Your 2012 CMJ Panels, Day 4

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John Bylander

Attention, anybody who still thinks CMJ is about concerts and wild nights: it's time for last call. One final dose of tech, marketing, and legal wisdom will be dispensed to registered attendees during the panel discussions hosted at NYU's Kimmel Student Center all day today. Sure, it starts earlier than usual this time around -- 9am sharp -- but if you decide to just sleep in and stave off last night's hangover, you'll likely spend the next 51 weeks haplessly bumbling around through what's left of the music industry, which I sincerely doubt can handle any more incompetence. Come on down.

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A Handy Flowchart For Selecting Your 2012 CMJ Panels, Day 3

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John Bylander

Welp, here we go again--Day 3 of CMJ 2012 serves up 23 music biz panels during the day which are accessible only to people with the all-access badges, followed at night by another frenzied shitstorm of concerts, the best of which probably will decide not to let you in even if you do have one of the damn things. For our money, the finest venue at CMJ is certainly NYU's Kimmel Student Center, on the southern end of Washington Square Park. Won't you join us?

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A Handy Flowchart For Selecting Your 2012 CMJ Panels, Day 2

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John Bylander

While you folks were all wearing yourselves out running around between CMJ showcases yesterday, I just guzzled a bunch of free booze at a press-only party and then ran home to giggle at the two boring rich dudes angrily discussing the details of their pension plans on national television. Hope it was worth it, because my own personal energy strategy was to turn in early and rest up for today's daytime programming, easily the highlight of CMJ for those of us who have no idea who the hell any of these bands are. (Pleased to meet you, Milk Dick.) But I bet you've heard of Kickstarter, SoundCloud, and TechCrunch, all of which are sending their top brass to dispense pearls and/or turds of music industry advice at today's panel discussions. No, I won't tell you where to find any of them; instead, please parse your various options using the decision tree we've thoughtfully provided.

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A Handy Flowchart for Selecting Your 2012 CMJ Panels, Day 1

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John Bylander

Today marks the start of the CMJ Music Marathon, the annual festival during which zillions of allegedly up-and-coming bands take over Williamsburg and lower Manhattan for the better part of a week to schmooze with various music industry forces and perform at their heavily branded sponsored showcases. This makes it an especially great week for concerts in New York, as you are probably already aware. But those who were lucky enough to score one of the pricey all-access passes also get another lesser-known benefit: admission to an excellent slate of daytime programming, mostly panel discussions and presentations hosted at NYU's Kimmel Student Center, roughly two dozen every day. Since these often go unheralded and thus might be incidental to your existing CMJ plans, we've compiled a handy tool to help you assemble a schedule. See you there.

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Three Other Reasons Why Sales Of Old Records Are Outpacing Sales Of New Ones

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The top three catalog albums of 2012 so far. (Whitney Houston's Whitney The Greatest Hits is No. 1.)
This week the news came out that sales of catalog albums outpaced those of new records during the first six months of 2012. Current (less than 18 months old) albums sold 73.9 million copies between January 2 and June 1, down from 82.8 million in the first six months of 2011; catalog albums sold 76.6 million copies, up from 72.6 million over last year's first half. My Seattle Weekly colleague Chris Kornelis went in-depth about how pricing of new releases vs. catalog titles helped create this scenario; deep discounting of certain older albums, in both physical and digital form, certainly makes the prospect of buying them more alluring to those people who simply want to add something, anything to their libraries. There's also the simple fact that there are simply more albums by well-known artists in the "catalog" side of things, not to mention the corollary that labels are getting more savvy about exploiting their vaults. (Hey, it saves money on recording!) But there are a few other factors at play that involve how people discover music in 2012, and they run the gamut from radio to the iTunes Store to the shelves at Target.


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50 Cent Is Done With The Album-Releasing Game

Man I'm not releasing a album i can't believe interscope is this f*cked up right now. I apologize to all my fans.less than a minute ago via UberSocial Favorite Retweet Reply


It should be noted that your correspondent is no great fan of 50 Cent, the Queens-born MC/smart drink mogul who has made himself over into something of a Twitter celebrity in recent months, simultaneously acting like a prankster and making big declarations about healing the world in a way that has so profoundly affected some, they've gone so far as to commit online shenanigans in his name. (It's like a religion!) But his announcement that he's no longer releasing albums is certainly worthy of note.



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Record Store Day: How Shops, Labels, Fans, And Those Annoying Resellers Benefit

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If you can snag this, congratulations, you've won.
Saturday marks the fifth annual Record Store Day, the celebration of all things indie, vinyl, and limited edition-slash-noble ploy to get customers through the doors of the music stores still standing in the spring of 2011. It's basically the record shop equivalent of a Hallmark holiday, but that's OK, since this year's list of special releases looks pretty killer. Here's a look at how different players in the retail system benefit from the celebration.

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Latin Jazz Heavyweights Protest Grammy Snub

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The scene outside the New York Institute of Technology Auditorium Monday night suggested a Latin jazz celebration; pianist Eddie Palmieri, pianist/bandleader Larry Harlow, drummer Bobby Sanabria, trombonist Chris Washburne, and trumpeter Brian Lynch milled about. But this wasn't a concert, nor was it a celebration; it was an informational meeting organized by the New York chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) where the musicians gathered would soon sound off in polite yet impassioned protest of the Grammys' elimination of the Best Latin Jazz Album category.


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Five Takeaways From The 2010 Grammy Nominations

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Behold, the future of music.
The Grammy Awards are a bit of a punchline in music nerd circles, a place where, say, MGMT battles Hall & Oates for a trophy that will inevitably be won, and then dropped on the ground, by the more telegenic and industry-saving Taylor Swift. The Grammy voters hate rap and r&b--or at least, they hate The-Dream, which amounts to the same thing--and they will not hesitate to put the Jonas Brothers and Stevie Wonder together on the same stage. Two years ago Herbie Hancock beat out both Kanye West and Amy Winehouse for Album of the Year. Nuff said. However, here they come, as they do every year, forcing us to care, or at least forcing the artists we care about to care, which amount to the same thing. Last night, they announced the 2010 Nominations. We have some thoughts.

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