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Weekly AUDIO NEWS for August 8, 2001


Fortes or Diminuendos for BMG? - German-owned BMG Entertainment has seen many ups and downs over the past year and will post a loss of about $150 million this fiscal just ended.  A planned merger with EMI Music failed, and the music giant's CEO Strauss Zelnick angered Clive Davis of their Arista label by going over his head in choosing a successor for him.  There was also a battle with another Clive, the CEO of the Jive label which carries about a third of BMG's market share. (None of this has much to do with BMG's classical product of course, except that belt-tightning cut back that small section's staff and their plans for new recording projects.)  BMG is also now heavily involved in the embattled Napster, which may be on its way out.  There is even a suggestion that BMG might sell off its music division entirely.

Big Show for Tube Afficionados - VSAC 2001, ther Vacuum State of the Art Conference and Show, is scheduled for September 7th through the 9th at the West Coast Silverdale Hotel, Washington, on the Olympic Peninsula.  The affair is geared to the do-it-yourself audiophile and will offer original designs in tube equipment, demonstrations from amateur builders, a series of seminars for DIY's at all skill levels, and an awards ceremony.  Established manufacturers of turntables, tube equipment as well as tubes themselves, and specialized music companies will exhibit their wares.  The Vintage Audio Room wil offer a display of antique radios and pre-transistor audio.  For registration and fee information, contact Eileen Schmalle at Bottlehead Corporation, 360-662-1386 or eileen@bottlehead.com.

Another Approach to Anti-Piracy of Music? - A company named Audible Magic [www.audiblemagic.com] claims to have perfected an audio fingerprinting technology that can identify music or audio clips by simply "listening" to them without intrusive watermarking or imbedded data that could degrade the fidelity.  The firm is said to have pioneered the field of content-based audio retrieval.  Their identification process can be used with royalty-tracking of broadcast music, legitimate file-sharing, and various internet music businesses.  Their site offers a free downloadable application called Clango™ which can identify the song title, artist and album label for music heard on popular webcast radio stations, with an option to purchase the CD from a select group of online retailers.

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