Lady Gaga “Born This Way” – 1,108,402 (60% digital)
Maybach Music Group “Self Made Vol. 1” – 58,794 (28% digital) – [read review]
Jadakiss “I Love You (A Dedication To My Fans): Mixtape” – 11,119 (31% digital)
Edo G “A Face In The Crowd” – 464 (56% digital) [two week total]
Termanology “Cameo King II” – 173 (100% digital)
Before getting into the industry news, the whole iHipHop.com team sends their condolences to the friends and family of Gil Scott-Heron,who passed away last Friday at age 62. Gil Scott was a true hip-hop pioneer whose revolutionary rhetoric influenced everyone from Nas to Kanye West (who sampled Scott-Heron on the closing track of his last album). Although his cause of death is currently undisclosed, Gil had a long history of illness and substance abuse, both of which may have contributed to his passing. R.I.P. Gil Scott-Heron April 1, 1949 – May 27, 2011.
By this time next week, we should all have a better understanding of how Apple’s transition into Cloud storage will (or will not) change the face of digital music as we know it. Yesterday, Apple released a statement confirming that as the keynote speaker for the company’s Worldwide Developer Conference on Monday, June 6th, CEO Steve Jobs will reveal “upcoming services offering iCloud.” According to Hypebot, “Various sources report that Apple has struck deals with EMI, WMG and Sony to launch the service. But, thus far, there have been no rumors of firm deals with Universal Music, indie labels or music publishers.” Although Jobs has yet to officially announce details behind the operation of iCloud, early reports indicate that the service will function by scanning user’s digital libraries in iTunes to mirror their music collection for cloud storage. Therefore, users will only have to manually upload songs in their libraries that are not available on iTunes. This is beneficial to both users and Apple because it will make digital music storage far less labor intensive for all as users will not have to upload everything file-by-file and Apple will only have to store one copy of each song in their database, whereas Amazon requires each user uploads their own copy of each file, likely resulting in thousands of duplicates of the same song within their database. It is also confirmed that Apple owns the rights to the domain iCloud.com.
One of the most popular torrent sites and harborer of pirated material is coming under fire once again. ThePirateBay.org, a Sweidsh file sharing site, is being sued on behalf of the Finnish Music Industry, hoping for Internet Service Provider Elisa to censor the website for Finnish users. A similar plea to two of the largest ISPs in the Netherlands was rejected last year due to the court finding no evidence that a majority of users are actually infringing copyrights by visiting the site. The Pirate Bay has been successfully censored in Ireland, Italy, Turkey and Denmark however it is currently the 31st most popular site in Finland and the 89th most visited site in the world.
In other news, the current chairman of Warner Music Group, Lyor Cohen, told Forbes that the current state of the music industry is “the most consumer friendly possible configuration.” He went on to explain that the model of CD sales is impractical because it forces fans to spend nearly $20 when they are really interested in one hit from a particular album. He claims that digital sales give fans more power to pick and choose what they want because it ends product bundling. When answering questions regarding 360 Deals, Lyor stated that artists want labels that provide expertise and creativity and in order to do so, labels must obtain additional rights to afford experienced personnel. “I would not be able to have the quality of individuals that populate these companies without having additional rights.” You can check out the full video below