Music News: 'Rumours,' 'Raising Hell,' 'Rock Around the Clock' added to National Recording Registry


Cover art for Fleetwood Mac's 'Rumours.'
Cover art for Fleetwood Mac's 'Rumours.' (Warner Bros.)

The National Recording Registry is an archive maintained by the Library of Congress to preserve recordings that are significant to American history and culture. This year's additions have been announced, and they include Fleetwood Mac’s classic album Rumours as well as the album Raising Hell by Run-D.M.C. and singles including the Temptations’s "My Girl" and "Rock Around the Clock" by Bill Haley and His Comets.

Other favorites added to the registry this year: The Sound of Music soundtrack; "Rhythm is Gonna Get You" by Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine; Chic’s "Le Freak"; and two iconic singles by men named Kenny: Kenny Loggins’s "Footloose" and Kenny Rogers’s "The Gambler." (Rolling Stone)

Music piracy rises

Although the rise of paid streaming has led to a financial rebound for the recording industry after its Napster-era crash, music piracy is still a significant problem. A new study shows that music piracy was up 14.7% last year over the previous year, much of that accounted for by illegal streaming. On the other hand, music labels' battle against illegal stream-ripping sites had a notable success with the shuttering of a site called YouTube.mp3. (Billboard)

Gaye estate wins "Blurred Lines" appeal

Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams have failed in their attempt to overturn a court decision ruling they're liable for paying partial royalties from their hit "Blurred Lines" to the estate of Marvin Gaye. A United States Court of Appeals did reverse a decision assigning liability to the label Interscope Records and collaborator T.I., but the $5.3 million damages award against Thicke and Williams stands.

The verdict wasn't unanimous, though. In a dissenting opinion, Judge Jacqueline H. Nguyen wrote that the decision "establishes a dangerous precedent" in that it "allows the Gayes to accomplish what no one has before: copyright a musical style." (New York Times)

Don't anger the Parrotheads

Jimmy Buffett fans are steaming over a negative New York Times review of the jukebox musical Escape to Margaritaville. Critic Jesse Green writes that after he called the show so dumb "it will temporarily extinguish your I.Q.," he was "excoriated" on social media. Green admits that he can understand why Parrotheads would enjoy the show more than he did.

Perhaps those who already felt connected to Mr. Buffett's country-calypso ditties would relish the chance to hear them in a new context. Or perhaps those who aspire to the laid-back lifestyle his alcohol-fueled empire promotes would enjoy another taste of it.

Escape to Margaritaville opened last week and is now playing on Broadway. (New York Times)

NSYNC to reunite — but not to sing

All five members of NSYNC will appear at the Hollywood Walk of Fame next Friday as a star for the group is unveiled. As Billboard notes, their star will join those of boy-band peers including New Kids on the Block and New Edition. The timing coincides with the 20-year anniversary of the quintet's self-titled debut album.

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