Thursday, August 08, 2013

Now that's what I call cutting through classical

How embedded marketing is reshaping classical music: BBC Radio 3 broadcasts a Proms interval talk on Holst's Planets by journalist Paul Morley and the Universal Music owned Sinfini Music website gives the talk a heads-up with a linked feature by Paul Morley. Both the talk and feature explore the crossover between classical and rock, a theme that also emerged in an interview with Universal Music's chief executive Max Hole broadcast on BBC Radio 4 a few days previously. Between them Universal Music and the BBC control the world's leading classical music publisher, 56% of the UK recorded classical music market, 26% of the UK classical radio audience, four of the top ten UK orchestras and the world's largest classical music festival. Now that's what I call cutting through classical.

Header image is the 1960 Westminster LP of The Planets with Sir Adrian Boult conducting the Vienna State Opera Orchestra and Chorus. Another daring to be different Westminster cover in Wolfgang Amadeus at his most seductive. Any copyrighted material on these pages is included as "fair use", for the purpose of study, review or critical analysis only, and will be removed at the request of copyright owner(s). Also on Facebook and Twitter.


Rob Collis said...

"Max Hole". Seriously? Too funny.

Paul Morley's an idiot - he may know a great deal about Rock Music (I don't), but knows sweet F.A. about 'classical' music.


Pliable said...

I'm probably a bit old-fashioned - or perhaps mindful of litigation - and am not too keen on someone being called an 'idiot' whatever their shortcomings.

Talking of shortcomings, I note that Paul Morley is described on the BBC website as a "cultural commentator", a description used by that other embedded Sinfini and BBC hack Norman Lebrecht to describe himself.

Is music journalism dead and buried? Is its replacement "cultural commentating"?

Ben.H said...

"Cultural commentator" is the ugly male version of "multi-talented".

Halldor said...

For what it's worth, I found the talk interesting, and it taught me a few things I hadn't previously known about Holst's influence on non-classical musical culture. It made me think differently.

There's more than one way to talk about music, and more than one valid perspective. That's why I admire this blog so much. But as long as what is said is honest and worthwhile, I have to say that I'm not over-bothered by the contractual arrangements that may or may not have led to one particular person saying it.

Pliable said...

“I have to say that I'm not over-bothered by the contractual arrangements that may or may not have led to one particular person saying it”.

Even when those contractual arrangements are quite disgracefully masked by duplicitous wording such as “Sinfini Music is run by a team of music fans” and “Sinfini Music is editorially independent”? and in the absence of a single mention of Universal Music ownership on any of the landing pages on the website?

Honesty is clearly an outmoded policy.

matthewhopus said...

Between this and that new blasphemous website (absolutely an abomination I might add - if you take a look - everything on it seems like a big marketing tug). I'm not sure anymore where to turn to.

Are sites such as Sinfinimusic and AltoRiot really the only future here? There has to be something credible