Tag Archives: Compton

MULTIHOP.TV HIGHLIGHTS 5 Music Business Lessons Every Musician Should Take From ‘Straight Outta Compton’

1. Don’t Sign A Contract Until Your Lawyer Looks It Over.

This is the biggest lesson that any musician should leave Straight Outta Compton with if they don’t know this already. Ice Cube’s character in the movie knew what was up, and refused to sign any paperwork as an artist without having a chance for his lawyer to look it over first. If you’re a musician, you should do the same.

If there’s only one music biz lesson to take from Straight Outta Compton, the importance of having a lawyer review your contracts before you sign is most crucial. The cost to hire one to get you out of the contract after you sign will be way more expensive and in many instances impossible to break you out of with litigation lasting for years.

2, Expensive Clothes, Champagne & Lobster Meals From Your Label Might Be On Your Dime.

Many royalty clauses for record deals tend to have catch-all phrases that enable record labels to deduct just about anything the label spends on musicians as an advance. I’ve had plenty of musician clients shocked to learn that deductions from their royalties were being taken from meals and other entertainment with their label as “meeting” costs when they assumed they were being treated on the label’s tab. The same goes for travel and lodging accommodations which might be provided from a record label.

Again, not saying a label that does this is necessarily “wrong” or “evil” for doing so, but as the old metaphor goes, just remember that there is rarely such a thing as a free lunch. If your label is giving you first class air, 5 star accommodations and regular meals with lots of zeros at the end of the tab, you may want to speak with your lawyer and label to ensure coach travel, airbnb or other budget friendly lodging options, and less baller-fied meals if you’re the one ultimately absorbing the costs.

3. Have A Band Agreement–Esp. One That Considers A Band Member Leaving.

The main storyline in Straight Outta Compton detailed how NWA came together as a band, then dismantled with Ice Cube and Dr. Dre leaving the band to launch solo careers and their own labels.

If you’re in a band now, you should absolutely have a written band agreement in place, drafted by a music attorney for transparency amongst you and your bandmates.

For starters, the band agreement should make clear who is a band member and who is not. Many bands sometimes have musicians who only join the band as a “sideman” for occasional recording sessions, paid as a work for hire, or temporarily on tour or for live performances. Not surprisingly, this can create blurred lines regarding who exactly is an official band member. With the rise of music “collectives” over the past few years, it can get even more confusing as to who is in a particular band, who’s not, or even more basic – if there even is a band to begin with.

4. Songwriter & Producers: Make Sure You Get Your Songwriting Credits.

Some of my colleagues may or may not agree with me on this, but in today’s music business I personally and strongly believe that songwriting/publishing is the most crucial and lucrative source of income for musicians, as record sales have steadily declined over the years.

There’s more immediate glitz and glamour involved with being a recording artist, but there’s more longevity and earning potential if your songwriter. Business-wise, musicians should probably strive to be both.

In Straight Outta Compton, Ice Cube’s character grows increasingly agitated and concerned about his lack of earnings in NWA. In one particular scene he was given the run-around about why he hadn’t been getting paid properly for his work with the group and he basically claimed that he was tired of the excuses because he knew he wrote many of the songs and was entitled to good earnings.

5. Know Your First Amendment Rights As An Artist.

One of the most exciting parts of Straight Outta Compton detailed NWA’s release of the track “F*ck Tha Police,” and the controversy it sparked across America as a radical public commentary on police brutality. In the movie, NWA was met with fans who supported their bravery for the outspoken song release, but the song was also met with a warning letter from the FBI about the track. NWA instantly became national crusaders for First Amendment rights as a result and gained unprecedented support when the group decided to publicly share the FBI letter.

Freedom of expression is an amazing liberty afforded by the US, and NWA clearly won the freedom of speech battle with the release of “F*k Tha Police”–however, it is important for musicians to note that the first Amendment does have limitations against it.

Five instances where freedom of speech can be limited include: 1) in a private home, wherein a homeowner can limit the speech they want in their own home; 2) in a private workplace where an employer can limit the speech conducted in the workplace; 3) in social media where companies like Facebook and Instagram have rights in their terms of use to remove or censor users; 4) in public schools amongst students; and (most relevant to music) 5) if speech is considered “obscene.”

info courtesy of http://www.okayplayer.com

MultiHop.TV HIGHLIGHTS Dr. Dre’s ‘Compton’ Album Streamed 25 Million Times in 1st Week

Dr. Dre’s album “Compton: A Soundtrack” — a loose tie-in to the film “Straight Outta Compton” — had 25 million streams around the world in its first week, and also sold nearly half a million downloads through Apple’s iTunes store, Apple executives said on Sunday.

“Compton,” released by Interscope Records, is Dr. Dre’s first album in 16 years, and its release has already had wide cultural impact. Made in secret by Dr. Dre, one of hip-hop’s most celebrated innovators, it came out on Aug. 7, a week before the release of “Straight Outta Compton,” which tells the story of Dr. Dre’s group N.W.A. and had $56.1 million in ticket sales in its opening weekend.

“We’re beginning to show what we can do in terms of communicating music to a worldwide audience and helping artists at the same time,” said Jimmy Iovine, the former record executive who helped build the new service after Apple paid $3 billion last year for Beats, the electronics company and music brand he started with Dr. Dre.

Info courtesy of www.nytimes.com

MULTIHOP.TV HIGHLIGHTS Dr. Dre to Donate Royalties from New Album to Build Performing Arts Facility for Compton Youth

Dr. Dre aka Andre Young, said Thursday he “decided to donate all of my artist royalties from the sale of this album to help fund a new performing arts and entertainment facility for the kids in Compton.”

Dre said he spoke to Compton Mayor Aja Brown about ways to give back to the city with the release of his first album in 16 years.

“I’m honored that Mr. Young has decided to make a significant investment in his community,” Brown said in a statement. “He clearly has a heart for Compton, especially our youth. I believe this performing arts center will provide a pathway for creative expression, exposure and training to the myriad of industries that support arts, entertainment and technology — while providing a much-needed safe haven for our youth.”

Brown added that the center would be a therapeutic outlet for youth suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

info courtesy of http://goodblacknews.org


MultiHop.TV HighLights Kendrick Lamar Unites Gangs With His New Reebok Sneakers

The photos of Kendrick Lamar’s first Reebok sneaker have been revealed and they continue with this same trend and mentality. Rather than making the sneakers available in separate colors, Kendrick’s version of the Reebok Ventilators come with blue accents on the left side and red accents on the right—forcing these two strongly represented colors to come together.

Each tongue pull is inscribed with “Kendrick Lamar” and “TDE” with blue and red tags inside that read “Neutral.” The right heel displays “Red” and the left reads “Blue,” capped off by a gum sole and rope shoe laces.

The sneakers are part of Kendrick’s ongoing effort to spread positivity. The Compton rapper, who received  the 35th Senate District’s Generational Icon Award, has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to support music, sports, and after-school programs in his hometown.

The Kendrick Lamar x Reebok Ventilator will be available starting July 18 for $142.