Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

Warner Music’s YouTube Channel Is Not Not the Anti-Vevo

Three of the big music labels distribute their clips through Vevo, the online video heavyweight. Warner Music works on its own, via a standalone deal it cut with YouTube a couple of years ago.

Now Warner has another music deal with YouTube, but this one has a twist. Warner will launch a new “channel” with the video giant, which will feature even more content from the label’s artists.

The idea has a business logic to it, but it’s hard to see the consumer appeal behind “The Warner Sound.” Because, with a couple of minor exceptions, people aren’t fans of labels — they’re fans of specific artists, songs and genres.

But at least the channel is trying to do something a bit different here — instead of showcasing music videos you can see other places, it’s going to create brand-new stuff. Some examples, via a press release:

  • CeeLo Green Presents ManTazia: “Directed, shaped and cut in 2D Jankyvision, each episode of this short-form series will take you on an adventure into the lush imagination of CeeLo Green.”
  • Untitled: “Hot on the heels of his award-winning ‘A Tribe Called Quest’ documentary, actor and director Michael Rapaport presents this documentary series featuring different WMG artists.”
  • Staged: “This show takes the famous lyrics of top stars and re-imagines them as the script of a drama. Each episode will be in a different style and feature recognizable lyrics from a WMG artist.”
  • The Live Room: “Intimate performances shot in legendary recording studios around the world.”
  • Countdown to … : “An up-close look at the last frenetic days before a hotly-anticipated album comes out. In the first instalment, teen rap sensation Diggy criss-crosses the country headlining tours, shooting music videos, meeting fans and even doing homework.”
  • Finding Cody Simpson: “Using YouTube’s annotation technology, fans will be able to create their own Cody Simpson movie.”

Here’s a teaser clip. The channel is supposed to launch later this month, in conjunction with SXSW.

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— Gitesh Pandya of comments on the dreadful opening weekend box office numbers for “The Fifth Estate.”