A roundup of notable music industry deals from the past two weeks.
Warner Music has partnered with the India-based music aggregator, distributor and production house Ziiki Media, it was announced Monday (May 11).
Ziiki specializes in the wildly popular Punjabi scene and distributes music by local artists including Daler Mehndi, Jasmine Sandlas and J Star. A press release notes that Ziiki’s sizable online following includes 110 sub channels on YouTube that have attracted more than 15 million subscribers in India alone.
Under the deal, Ziiki’s Indian repertoire will be licensed to Warner Music’s ADA division and the newly-launched Warner Music India, which opened for business in March.
In a statement, Ziiki Media CEO and managing director Arun Nagar said the deal will enable the company “to ramp up our presence in Punjabi music – discovering and signing more acts, creating more audiovisual content and getting more amazing music to fans.” Nagar added that the partnership also opens up opportunities for collaboration between Ziiki artists and Warner Music’s roster worldwide.
China-based streaming service NetEase Cloud Music and Warner Chappell have announced a new strategic partnership that will provide NetEase users with access to the publisher’s catalog.
Under the deal, NetEase will gain access to Warner Chappell’s library while also teaming up in areas including online karaoke, IP development and more. NetEase will additionally gain access to the copyright of 1.3 million music lyrics from artists including Madonna, Radiohead, Katy Perry and Steve Aoki.
NetEase currently boasts over 800 million registered users.
UMe, the global catalog company of Universal Music Group and Spirit Music Group, has signed a worldwide deal to physically and digitally distribute most of singer-songwriter Ingrid Michaelson’s catalog. The agreement follows Spirit’s acquisition of the majority of Michaelson’s publishing and masters last year.
The new deal will cover such tracks as “The Way I Am,” “Be OK,” “You and I,” and “Girls Chase Boys,” as well as eight albums and EPs, including Girls & Boys, Be OK, Snowfall, Everybody, Human Again, Lights Out, It Doesn’t Have To Make Sense and Alter Egos. It will also include all of Michaelson’s non-album singles released during this period, in addition to her music videos.
Digital distribution of Michaelson’s catalog switched over to UMe on May 1; CD and vinyl releases will follow on May 20 and June 19, respectively. All eight albums and EPs, with the exception of Alter Egos, will be repressed on CD and vinyl under the deal.
Gabe Saporta’s The Artist Group (T∆G) has partnered with The Orchard to formally launch T∆G Music, a new record label for independent-minded artists.
T∆G Music’s current roster includes Tessa Violet, courtship., Naomi Wild and more. Under the deal, The Orchard will provide T∆G Music with services including sales, marketing, radio promotion and more in 17 territories worldwide.
Wonho, a former member of the bestselling K-pop group Monsta X, has signed with Maverick Management as a solo artist. He will be represented by Eshy Gazit, who previously worked with Monsta X on various promotions.
In April, Wonho signed to Korean record label Highline Entertainment as a solo artist and producer.
Australian rapper Tkay Maidza has signed with 4AD, which released Maidza’s new single “Shook” and its accompanying video earlier this week.
Prior to signing with 4AD, Maidza released tracks including “Awake” and “M.O.B.,” as well as her 2016 debut album TKay (Downtown/Interscope) and the 2018 EP Last Year Was Weird, Vol. 1. Additionally, she won an MTV EMA in 2018 and received a nomination at the 2016 BET Awards; has performed sets at Governors Ball, Splendour In The Grass, Reading and Leeds, Pukkelpop and Hangout Festival; and has toured with Mark Ronson, Charli XCX, Rita Ora, RL Grime, Years and Years and Troye Sivan. She additionally has her own clothing line, Last Year Was Weird.
The Europe-based AI-powered music recommendation and audio search company AIMS API has signed a partnership with Universal Publishing Production Music (UPPM) to implement its AIMS similarity search technology on all UPPM websites worldwide.
The technology will enhance discoverability for UPPM and its clients by allowing searches for songs by audio similarity and common traits, based on a reference track, across the publisher’s owned and administered catalogs. Under the agreement, AIMS will be applied to catalog content across all UPPM companies, including Firstcom Music and Elias Music in the US and Kapagama in France.
Production and library music company Extreme Music has partnered with Peter Gabriel’s Real World Records to create LIFE, a new production music label. Under the deal, LIFE will license the music of Real World artists including Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Papa Wemba, Toto La Momposina, Afro Celt Sound System, The Blind Boys of Alabama and over 200 others to TV, film and other media.
Death metal band Frozen Soul has signed a global label deal with Century Media Records.
The group, comprised of vocalist Chad Green, guitarists Michael Munday and Chris Bonner, bassist Samantha Mobley and drummer Matt Dennard, released a four song demo-turned-EP, Encased in Ice, last year. In early March, they entered the studio with engineer Slade Willias and producer and guitarist Daniel Schmuck to begin recording their follow up, Crypt of Ice.