YouTuber Burls Art has managed to construct a Strat with 1,200 colored pencils and best of all, he documented the entire process.

To create the colorful axe, Burls Art put the pencils together in a box and bound them together with epoxy resin. After carving out the shape of the instrument and routing it for the hardware, electronics and pickups, he sprayed five coats of enamel to keep the finish intact.

You can watch the guitar get constructed from the ground up above.

Yes, There’s Now A Zillow For Song Royalties

If you own a home you most likely know about Zillow, a website that makes it easy to find out how much your house, and others in the neighborhood, is worth on the current open market. It’s great if you’re buying or selling a home, or just for fun to play a “What if” game or two. Now there’s something similar available for song royalties as well. Royalty Exchange has just launched its “Know Your Worth” app that collects many streams of information and makes your royalties easy to understand in a way that hasn’t been done before.

According to the company, “The app analyses songwriters’ public performance statements from their PRO, and automatically produces a personalized report with details that until now were unavailable from a single source.

This includes:

  • A dollar range estimate of the catalog’s fair market value
  • A full accounting of the lifetime and last 12 months earnings for the catalog provided
  • A list of the catalog’s top-earning songs
  • The catalog’s top sources of revenue by format (radio, streaming, TV/Film, etc.)
  • Year-over-year trending data for all earnings, top songs, and top formats

Finally, it provides the first-ever analysis of what each songwriter earns in public performance royalties on specific streaming services through a metric we call the “Latte Index”—or the number of streams on each service needed to buy a Starbucks Latte.”

While the app provides a good look at a catalog’s worth, it’s not all-encompassing, as it just looks at statements from ASCAP and BMI. If you have a foreign presence or are signed to SESAC, then you won’t know the full picture of the song or catalog’s worth. That said, Know Your Worth is a quick and easy way to at least get a feel for its value.

If you’re an aspiring songwriter, this app probably won’t mean much to you, but if you’ve had some success and you’re wondering about the value of your song catalog, the Know Your Worth app is a quick way to find out.

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Primus Returns with Humor-Tinged Tales of Dark Cynicism on The Desaturating Seven

The twisted trio that is Primus lives up to its colorful reputation with their new ATO Records release, The Desaturating Seven. Comprised of Les Claypool, Larry LaLonde and Tim Alexandre, this will be Primus’ 9th studio album and will be released Sept. 29.

The Desaturating Seven continues Primus’ tradition of drawing inspiration from children’s stories, succeeding their 2014 album, Primus & the Chocolate Factory. Les Claypool shares that the inspiration for their new album was a bedtime story that he used to read to his kids: “Many years ago when my children were little kidlets scurrying around the place wreaking havoc and whatnot till it was time for bed and book time, my wife turned them on to a book called The Rainbow Goblins by Ul De Rico. The dark imagery and beauty of the art struck me immediately and I thought, ‘this would make good fodder for a piece of music.’” Continue reading →

Music Industry vs. YouTube

The battle between the music industry and YouTube continues.

According to new data from RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America), revenues from recorded music in the U.S. grew 11.4% in 2016 to 7.7 billion. Paid streaming music subscriptions (such as Spotify and Apple Music) have instigated the music business to encounter its biggest gain since 1998. Streaming platforms have generated a majority of U.S.’s music industry revenues.

However, according to Cary Sherman (chairman and CEO of RIAA), not all streaming services are able to recognize the value of music. This is especially important because physical CD sales and download sales are declining. The remaining pillar of sales in the music industry (music streaming) needs to be sufficient enough to compensate for the loss of CD sales and downloads.

YouTube has been at the forefront of not compensating artists fairly. In a recent essay, Sherman wrote:

“For example, it makes no sense that it takes a thousand on-demand streams of a song for creators to earn $1 on YouTube, while services like Apple and Spotify pay creators $7 or more for those same streams. Why does this happen? Because a platform like YouTube wrongly exploits legal loopholes to pay creators at rates well below the true value of music while other digital services — including many new and small innovators — cannot.”

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Google Introduces Way to Connect with People Searching For Your Music

Google is formulating a new feature that will make it easier for musicians to connect with people searching for their music.

The feature is called “Posts on Google”, which allows a verified musician (or business) to create a post that will appear directly to search results. Likewise, the post will appear first in the Google results. If fans are searching for a band on Google, they will be provided with verified and reliable information through this feature.

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The Daybreakers Rock New England

Back in June, rootsy blues-rock band The Daybreakers released their first full-length album. Since the release of the album, the group has been playing shows frequently within the New England area and getting airplay on radio stations across the country. We discussed the band’s passion for playing live gigs and the process of recording their LP with bass player, Matt Schairer.

You play both small pubs and crowds of 500 plus. Do you prefer the intimate gigs or the large ones?

The bigger the better for us. We are constantly striving to improve our reach and book bigger and better shows. The small intimate gigs are great as they provide the opportunity to showcase some different songs and subtleties, but the big shows are always the most exciting.

You’ve played many shows in New England. Do you have a favorite spot in the area to perform?

We have played the past three summers as an opener at Indian Ranch. That is always a great place to play. We have also had a lot of success at a local club in Franklin, MA called the Black Box. They have booked some big time acts in that room and we have had a fun time when we’ve had a chance to put a bill together there.

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City in the Cloud’s ‘The Content of Box 212’

College can be a demanding time for many. However, that hasn’t stopped City in the Clouds from releasing their debut album, The Contents of Box 212.

The NJ and NYC based college students demonstrate their versatile sound in The Contents of Box 212 – incorporating elements from several genres such as reggae, pop-punk, surf rock, and hip-hop.

City in the Clouds is comprised of brothers Jackson and Brendan Marquardt, joined by Luke London, and Marcus Grey. The Marquardt brothers have found themselves working among some key players in the music industry, previously recording with R.E.M. producer Mitch Easter, and touring the US and UK with The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus.

The Contents of Box 212 tackles an extensive range of sounds, evident from tracks such as “Dirty Dan”, which delivers pop-punk and emo sounds, filled with edgy guitars and an electrifying dance beat. Other tracks, such as “Down to Earth”, contain alternative and surf rock vibrations. With influences ranging from Gorillaz to Beach Boys, its no wonder the group provides such a diverse sound.

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Spotify Hits 50 Million Paying Subscribers

Spotify confirmed it has 50 million paying subscribers. The company announced the milestone in a tweet.

The company’s paying subscriber count has boosted throughout the past year. The paying subscribe count went from 30 million subscribers in March, to 40 million in September. Now, it is at 50 million this month. Spotify has increased its paying subscriber count by 10 million in only six short months. It is likely that the paying subscriber count will continue to increase as time goes on.

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Powderfinger: Nurture the Urge

Powderfinger Promotions–Independent Radio Promotion and Publicity. Since being founded in October 1994, Powderfinger has come to be regarded as a top indie radio promotion and publicity firm with ties across North America.