New digital music licensing deals with AVLA, the international Audio-Video Licensing Agency, are going to open up new multi-platform distribution and streaming opportunities for some of the country's largest media companies, and some of its smallest.
In one case, CBC has reached a deal with AVLA, and that will trigger the launch of a new digital music service from the CBC.
CBC says it will also to offer more of its radio programs online, and through on demand services.
Toronto-based digital music company Mediazoic also has a new deal with AVLA which will allow Mediazoic's Internet radio network to carry the music catalogues that the association represents.
That's more than 1000 record companies, and the majority of all sound recordings and music videos produced and/or distributed in Canada.
The Audio-Video Licensing Agency (AVLA) represents those thousand, including major companies such as Warner Bros., Sony Music and, EMI, as well a numerous independent record companies and other copyright owners.
AVLAs members own or control the copyright to most of the sound recordings and music produced, distributed and heard in Canada. It can license both the broadcasting and reproduction of members¿ audio and video recordings in Canada.
Both AVLA deals are seen as clever and imaginative business propositions, and among the first such negotiated collective licenses in Canada for on-line streaming and podcasting of radio and online digital music programming.
"We are thrilled to have been able to work together with CBC to license a service that will be extremely welcome in Canada, where there are only a handful of digital options for consumers. This groundbreaking agreement means that music fans will have more access to the best in Canadian music, whether by emerging or established artists, while creators will enjoy full recognition for the value of their work," said Graham Henderson, President of AVLA and Music Canada.
"Through this new relationship with AVLA and the Canadian music labels, CBC will be able to offer its programs on demand complete with music while at the same time building a new digital music service, that will be unlike any other available today in Canada," Chris Boyce, executive director of radio and audio of CBC English Services, said in a statement.
"As part of our on-going commitment to Canadian culture, this will be accomplished by combining the power of context, curation and community in new and innovative ways," he added, noting that more details about CBC's new digital music service will be announced in the coming weeks.
Meanwhile, based out of a radio and record production studio in downtown Toronto, Mediazoic has new plans as well, with several radio shows in development, all of which will benefit from the wide range of music that the AVLA deal opens for Mediazoic and its listeners.
Last year, Mediazoic teamed up with iconic Toronto radio producer David Bray and international record producer and recording artist Chris Birkett to create the Mediazoic Studio In The Cloud, a full service radio and record production facility aimed at integrating all of Mediazoic's music promotion activities under one roof.
Bray is also a contributor to Broadcaster Magazine, a sister publication of Mediacaster.
Mediazoic also develops software that allows both individuals and commercial organizations to create, customize and curate their own Internet radio stations. The system keeps track of all "listens" throughout the network, allowing royalties to be paid not only to the creators and rights holders of the music, but also to other stakeholders in the music ecosystem.
Current station hosts on the Canadian-owned-and-operated Internet radio network include renowned DJ Alan Cross, iconic Toronto live music venue Hugh's Room, annual music festival Indie Week, and local hip hop MC and artist MC FÜBB.
Cross, whose Weekly Top 11 show is unveiled every Friday on the network, has high praise for what Mediazoic's unique take on internet radio has done for him. "Mediazoic's resources have been a big help to my website, driving both traffic and time spent." he enthuses, "Everyone should give the company a look."
"Our listeners know that every one of our stations has been playing great music since our launch last year," describes Mediazoic founder Greg Nisbet, "but let's face it, now that our station hosts can throw a bit of Joni Mitchell, K'naan or Leonard Cohen into the mix, the listener experience is going to get a whole lot better. Our aim has always been to capture some of the magic that happens between people when great music is created and heard, and spread that magic across the digital realm, so we're really excited about all of the wonderful collaborations that this deal will allow us to explore."
"We're pleased to work with Mediazoic, which will ensure that all of our members, whether they represent emerging or established artists, benefit equally from "plays" on this innovative new network," added Graham.
The deal between Mediazoic and AVLA covers reproduction rights. Mediazoic is also working with Re:Sound, the Canadian not-for-profit music licensing company that licenses recorded music for public performance, broadcast and new media to cover performance rights.
"We're always happy to work with innovative companies like Mediazoic to ensure that music creators are fairly compensated within emerging business models," said Ian MacKay, Re:Sound's President.
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