Record label comes under criticism - again
michael baggs
15:40 24th October 2012
  • Leonard Cohen fans were disappointed earlier this year when the legend's gigs were moved from Hop Farm to Wembley Arena at the last minute - but not as much as Cohen was himself. "I want you to know I learned about it the same time you did," he said after the change. "There are unseen hands that manipulate the marketplace. Hands that I never get to see, or crush."

  • The Sex Pistols had signed a two-year contract with EMI, and has just released their first single ''Anarchy In The UK''. They then abused family favourite Bill Grundy on pre-watershed TV, the label were horrified and decided it would just be best to pay them off and end their contract. Beg the question though, what were EMI expecting from a band whose first single was titled ''Anarchy In The UK'' - pleasant small talk?

  • The Rolling Stones had one more single left in their contract with Decca Records. Aggravated by the rules and ''the man'', they decided to stick it to the suits and release the track ''Schoolboy Blues''. Decca let it gather dust for a while (understandably - YouTube it and listen to the lyrics), and then in an act of revenge released it under a German only compilation CD.

  • After Robbie left Take That he released a cover of George Michael''s song: ''Freedom''. This was his F you to his ''oppressors''. Freedom from what though some might ask? The ''''hell'''' that was being in a hugely successful boy band? One with he later rejoined...

  • After the private equity firm Terra Firma took over label EMI, many artists left the label. Radiohead left in the boldest of styles though, stating, "The problem is, Terra Firms don''''t understand the music industry." Amongst others to leave the label were Sir Paul McCartney and The Rolling Stones.

  • Professor Green went to town with his label EMI recently, angered by their ''''lack of work'''' on his second album. He tweeted, "Why would your own record label hinder you? Answers on a postcard." Continuing, he added: "I just can''''t help but question why some people have jobs. All I do is work, so I get extremely pissed off when people don''''t do theirs."

  • Back in the nineties, Prince suffered a decrease in record sales. He blamed his label Warner Brothers, and was so angry with them that he walked around awards shows with the word ''slave'' written on his face. What a diva.

  • Notorious diva Mariah Carey was once married to the chief executive of Columbia Records, Tommy Mottola. They later split, and so did her contract, she cited that they were treating her, "like a commodity" and being staffed by "people who don''t really know me".

  • The Stone Roses famously fell out with their label Silverstone Records after the release of their debut album. The band then broke into their offices and covered everything in paint.

  • After Dizzee Rascal wanted a change of direction back in 2008 with track ''''Dance Wiv Me'''', XL Recordings were rumoured to have been displeased with his more poppy sound, so he dropped the label and is now signed to his own label Dirtee Stank.

  • Leonard Cohen fans were disappointed earlier this year when the legend's gigs were moved from Hop Farm to Wembley Arena at the last minute - but not as much as Cohen was himself. "I want you to know I learned about it the same time you did," he said after the change. "There are unseen hands that manipulate the marketplace. Hands that I never get to see, or crush."

  • Posting on Twitter yesterday (Sept 24), Marina wrote: "So, someone at my record label wont let me release the video bc I look ugly in it apparently we need more $ / time to paint out ugly parts," she tweeted. Adding: "The video will be out end of the week. If not, I am happy to leak the ''minger'' version for my fans." After receiving abuse from Marina''s fans online, 679 wrote to say: "(for the record, we think M''s a babe @marinasdiamondswasn''t our decision, stop sending death threats, etc etc)"

  • The Sex Pistols had signed a two-year contract with EMI, and has just released their first single ''Anarchy In The UK''. They then abused family favourite Bill Grundy on pre-watershed TV, the label were horrified and decided it would just be best to pay them off and end their contract. Beg the question though, what were EMI expecting from a band whose first single was titled ''Anarchy In The UK'' - pleasant small talk?

  • The Rolling Stones had one more single left in their contract with Decca Records. Aggravated by the rules and ''the man'', they decided to stick it to the suits and release the track ''Schoolboy Blues''. Decca let it gather dust for a while (understandably - YouTube it and listen to the lyrics), and then in an act of revenge released it under a German only compilation CD.

  • After Robbie left Take That he released a cover of George Michael''s song: ''Freedom''. This was his F you to his ''oppressors''. Freedom from what though some might ask? The ''''hell'''' that was being in a hugely successful boy band? One with he later rejoined...

Blink-182 have announced their split from their label Interscope, through a tweet on guitarist Tom Delonge's Twitter account.

Delonge used the social media site to share the news, writing: "Freedom!! Blink as of today, is now an independent Artist!!!!!" He added a still from the movie Braveheart alongside the message.

The band have only been signed to Interscope for the release of one album, Neighbourhoods' and before that were signed to label Geffen. Judging by the exclamation marks, they seem more than happy to be free of their recording contract.

Last year, there was a disagreement with the label after Interscope said that Blink had gone over their recording time allowance with nothing to show for it. The band were given a strict deadline, and managed to produce the new album.


'Freedom!': the post to announce Blink-182's label departure.

Blink-182 aren't the first artist to express disappointment with the way they've been handled by Interscope. Pop-punk band All Time Low split from the label after releasing just one album with them - Dirty Work. (Is there a pattern here?)

All Time Low had no problem speaking out about the issues they faced with Interscope. Guitarist and vocalist Alex Gaskarth told Alternative Press, "This time around [with Dirty Work], there was a lot more A&R involvement and a lot of people wanting to stop by the studio to give their two cents. It is what it is.

"In that major-label world, you totally see where it would work; it’s how you imagine a hip-hop record being made, these people stopping in all the time and saying, “That joint’s sick,” or whatever.

But with us, you just end up having these dudes standing in the back of the room, and they’re air-drumming the shit out of these songs, but they have no idea how to play drums. It’s one of those situations that makes for the wrong atmosphere."

He also told AbsolutePunk that the band did not feel like a priority, as the album was constantly being pushed back and did not get enough promotion.

Alex added: "It was just one of those textbook situations where we signed, we had the record done, and then one thing led to another. First they had to gear up for a [Lady] Gaga release, so we got pushed back, and then they had like a whole firing and re-staffing moment, so we didn’t want to release without a team behind it, so it got pushed back again."

And rapper 50 Cent had a similar disagreement with the label. In late 2011, he stated: "Not everyone is not committed to releasing my new album." The album, titled Street King Immortal, is still yet to be released.

Watch the video for Blink-182's 'Wishing Well':

 

Marina's 'ugly' label rant: the stars who bite back


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