The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

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Kuhlau

The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by Kuhlau » Tue Mar 03, 2009 5:54 am

For those who don't subscribe via an RSS feed reader to Lebrecht's often sensationalist style of music journalism, here's his latest cry of 'Death!': the end of Telarc, apparently.

FK

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Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by John F » Tue Mar 03, 2009 7:13 am

Lebrecht's done it again. :roll: According to Stereophile, rumors of Telarc's death are exaggerated:
Stereophile wrote:Plans are for Telarc itself to continue with new projects (farmed out) in order to keep their catalog alive. The company's 2009 schedule includes 15 classical releases; 33 jazz, pop, and cabaret titles from both Telarc and subsidiary label Heads Up; and two blues discs. So far, only two multichannel SACDs are planned: Vivaldi's Four Seasons, from Martin Pearlman's Boston Baroque; and Bruckner's Symphony 5, from the Philharmonia Orchestra under Benjamin Zander, the latter to be released in late March.

And who will be making these farmed out new productions? Why, the Telarc production team, which will continue in existence as an independent production company called Five/Four Productions Ltd. According to the story, "the men have already begun recording projects in multiple genres for the Cleveland Orchestra, Telarc, and other high-profile clients."

Five/Four hit the ground running long before they expected to: "Four months before they'd planned to get going on outside projects, the Cleveland Orchestra contracted 5/4 to record fabulous soprano Measha Brüggergosman and the orchestra in selections by Richard Wagner. The recording will join other Wagner tracks on a Cleveland Orchestra all-Wagner disc from DG scheduled for release in 2010. Audiophiles will then be able to compare the PCM sound on DG's recent Cleveland Orchestra recording of Beethoven's Symphony 9 with the sound in DSD of the same orchestra, as captured by 5/4."

Here's the whole article, published about a month before Lebrecht's, which popped right up when I googled Cleveland Orchestra Telarc:

http://www.stereophile.com/news/once_te ... five-four/

How this will work out in the longer term remains to be seen, and it's possible that Telarc will eventually cease publishing new classical recordings. Anything is possible. But if Five/Four is able to make a go of it, and the Cleveland Orchestra and others continue to be recorded by them, who cares what brand name the new recordings are sold under? A Telarc recording by any other name...

Lebrecht, of course, has got it wrong. The true story is that Telarc will continue in existence as a label; it will continue to issue new releases; and its new recordings, or at least some of them, will be made by the same production team that formerly shared its office space. This is not a death, it's a restructuring. But that's not sensational enough for our Norman, his hobby horse is the death of classical recording, his mind's made up and he isn't interested in the facts.
Last edited by John F on Tue Mar 03, 2009 6:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.
John Francis

Kuhlau

Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by Kuhlau » Tue Mar 03, 2009 8:31 am

John, I've posted a link to your post on Norman's blog.

FK

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Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by Ralph » Tue Mar 03, 2009 8:56 am

I would hate to see Telarc disappear. I have many excellent recordings from them, especially in the Early Music area.
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Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by Guitarist » Tue Mar 03, 2009 9:26 am

Ralph wrote:I would hate to see Telarc disappear. I have many excellent recordings from them, especially in the Early Music area.
I think Lebrecht needs to disappear!

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Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by pizza » Tue Mar 03, 2009 12:37 pm

Here is Lebrecht's update on Decca:


"The final reckoning

The sackings have started at Decca. Out of 32 staff at the London headquarters, just six are being retained.

That is one to manage the office, one to answer the phone and open the mail, two to look after the royalty accounts and two more to deal with whatever instructions come down from corporate headquarters.

One thing is clear: there is nobody left at Decca to make records.

Classical artists, including the now-celebrated Tutula Bartley, are being transferred to Universal Classics and Jazz (UCJ), a crossover business that produces such half-baked trivia as the boy band Blake and the East London lad who gave up his junior football career to play the saxophone. Cecilia will feel in good company.

The residual staff at Decca will report to Michael Lang, head of Deutsche Grammophon in Hamburg.

The notion that Decca will continue to function as a production centre after these abolitionary measures is a mixture of wishful thinking and corporate fiction. The author of the fantasy is Christopher Roberts, head of UCJ.

Roberts once tried to persuade me that corporate ciphers like himself earn huge salaries and bonuses in order to protect madcap artists from their wild whims and maximise the revenue potential from their works. Given that Roberts has dedicated so much of his energy to eliminating outlets for classical artists, I wonder if should perhaps think of revising his job description - so long as he still has a job.

Decca is dead. A grand tradition has been laid waste. What remains is history - and a golden opportunity to reinvent the spirit of enterprise in classical music.

LATE EXTRA: A sharp-eyed reader directs me to a news release from Universal Music Group, the monster that killed Decca. UMG has just appointed three more vice-presidents, just what the music world most needs right now, to 'erase lines between physical and digital'.

One of the new bonus-guzzlers is called Rotter, Mitch Rotter. You couldn't make it up."
March 2, 2009 8:43 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)


http://www.artsjournal.com/slippeddisc/ ... l#comments

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Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by some guy » Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:25 pm

Kuhlau, I've seen this thread of yours now on five different classical music forums.

You had to post the same thing on all five? And about Mr. Norman Has No Credibility Left Lebrecht? I'm starting to suspect a wee bit schadenfreude here!

As for Norman, the schadenfreude is more than just a suspicion. It's full-on gloating with him. And that's all it is. Serious musicians will continue to make music no matter what any industry around them does. Classical music will not die because of something that happens to the industry. A composer friend of mine has eschewed hard copy entirely, promoting and selling his music online. And the less storage becomes an issue, the less you'll find lossy file types, like mp3, being used. I have many gigabytes of music on my computer already, all in .flac, .ogg, or .wav files.

And even if we lost electricity in some shuddersome catastrophe, people will continue to make music. Not that I can predict the future, but that seems for certain sure.
"The public has got to stay in touch with the music of its time . . . for otherwise people will gradually come to mistrust music claimed to be the best."
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Kuhlau

Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by Kuhlau » Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:52 pm

some guy wrote:Kuhlau, I've seen this thread of yours now on five different classical music forums.

You had to post the same thing on all five?
You and I move around the many forums, some guy - but plenty of others are loyal to just one or two communities; so I saw no problem in posting the same thing in several places (which, if you're keeping score, you'll note is not something I usually do).
some guy wrote:Serious musicians will continue to make music no matter what any industry around them does. Classical music will not die because of something that happens to the industry. A composer friend of mine has eschewed hard copy entirely, promoting and selling his music online. And the less storage becomes an issue, the less you'll find lossy file types, like mp3, being used. I have many gigabytes of music on my computer already, all in .flac, .ogg, or .wav files.

And even if we lost electricity in some shuddersome catastrophe, people will continue to make music. Not that I can predict the future, but that seems for certain sure.
You make some good points, and I broadly agree. :D

FK

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Re: The Grim Reaper reports another classical music label death

Post by karlhenning » Tue Mar 03, 2009 1:56 pm

Guitarist wrote:I think Lebrecht needs to disappear!
Hear, hear.

Cheers,
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