Like The Voice, But On Acid 😛

Welcome to 2019, where we've replaced American Idol with a competition that forces celebrities to don hellish costumes and sing for us. It's The Voice on acid.

Behold, The Masked Singer.

The Queen Of The Desert

Though Coachella’s lineup almost always provides a peek into the music industry, this year it seems a particularly apt allegory. Let’s start with who’s not there: Kanye and Justin Timberlake. Headliner Ariana Grande may not be Beyoncé, but she’s at the vanguard of the current wave of pop. She’s only the fourth woman to get top billing of the fest. Stepping in too is Tame Impala, as if you thought rock wasn’t going to get one last go at it. And finally, Childish Gambino rounds out the mix. Factor in a TON of international bands and you have a snapshot of music heading into 2019.

Hard Rock At The Hard Rock

Whenever a music fest comes to town, hotels make a killing. But most festivals are annual events. What to do the other 362 days of the year? Get in the promoter business, that’s what. More and more hotels are producing and hosting their own music events, and the biggest surprise is why it took them so long to start. Guests are charged a premium for a room during the festivities, and rather than heading offsite each day to buy $14 beers in a field; they buy $14 beers at the hotel bars! W Hotels, to their credit, are wise to this – but 2019 will see at least five different upscale chains host their own fests as more and more realize the slam-dunk nature of this particular music biz strategy.

For Whom The App Dings

On Wednesday Apple reduced its quarterly revenue projections by about $5b based on sluggish iPhone sales in China. They’re still on track to bring in $84b in ONE QUARTER, so let’s not pull the fire alarm on a 5% drop just yet, but since Apple is Apple, let’s dive in. The key question is whether iPhone sales are leveling off. And if so, what comes next? Apple is important not just because they sell iPhones to the whole world – they were the catalyst for tech’s “Cambrian explosion.” Uber, Spotify, Instagram, and Tinder could not exist were it not for the iPhone. If this current epoch is coming to a close, what is the next catalyst?.




Neal Brennan's
New Netflix Special
Bodega Boys
Back At 220
Julio Anaya Cabanding


The Best of 2018 According To Our Readers


Silk City + Dua Lipa - Electricity

I love that classic house sounds made their way to the mainstream again in 2018 thanks to folks like Calvin Harris and the newly formed super-duo comprised of Mark Ronson and Diplo known as Silk City. Both teamed up with incredible talent Dua Lipa for their respective hits, “One Kiss” + “Electricity,” last year — it was a toss-up between the two.

-- Jonah Berry, Senior Director, Marketing at mtheory


Charles Bradley - Changes

-- Brandon Boyd, Incubus


Charlie Puth - Voicenotes

I'm biased, but Voicenotes of course.

-- Mikaela Puth, Manager, Charlie Puth & Stephen Puth


Wayne Newton - Live At Bally's Hotel & Casino

Mr. Las Vegas in Las Vegas? Talk about hitting the jackpot!

-- Lauren Marrus, Media + Sponsorship, Live Nation


Nick Cave - Live At The Forum

-- Thomas K. Arnold, Writer


Ariana Grande - breathin

Song of the year by the woman of the year. Love the message of positivity and the fact that she does a chorus where it’s just her powerful vocals. 

-- Melly Ramirez, Social Media, Honda & Acura


Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa  - Black Coffee

-- Lisa Protter, CEO, Organic Nectars


Phish - Live at MSG, Beyoncé - Coachella 

Phish 12/29 was pretty perfect as far as cult music goes. Dead 'n Co on the beach in Mexico was special. I hate pop and edm so that doesn’t do it for me. Jeff Lynne has a great tour. Beyoncé Coachella was the show of the year hands down

-- Jeff Kravitz, Photographer


The Interrupters  - Fight the Good Fight

-- Kevin Kerslake, Director
A toast to everyone who wrote in, and a toast to all our readers. Thanks for welcoming us to your inbox every week.


Happy New Year!
See ya next week...
This WeekMatt Pennington