Indie Rock Label ‘Drag City’ Releases Nearly Entire Back Catalog on Apple Music

Chicago-based independent record label Drag City has released nearly all of its back catalog of music -- which began with the label's inception in 1990 -- onto Apple Music this past weekend. To celebrate the addition, Apple has created a new banner for the record label, allowing subscribers to listen to Drag City playlists categorized by various genres and artists.

In its description of the label, Apple Music explained that this marks the first time ever that most of Drag City's music has been made available on a streaming service, and the launch is exclusive to Apple Music. The press release by Drag City noted that its "entire(ish)" catalog is now available on Apple's music streaming service, but it didn't specify which songs or artists might be missing (via Spin).

"Daring, irreverent, ferociously independent -- Drag City is one of our favorite labels. Over the last three decades, it's become a place where artists and iconoclasts have found a home to further their vision, whether it's symphonic, harp-driven Americana or meditative doom metal. With the Drag City catalog now available to stream for the first time, we're celebrating the label alongside a few people who have helped to make it so singular.
Outside of the new launch, a few Drag City artists and songs have been made available on Apple Music over the past few months, most notably related to some of Joanna Newsom's albums. Now, users can stream nearly every label released under Drag City's banner, including albums created by Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Ty Segall, Royal Trux, Smog, Six Organs of Admittance, and many more.

Previously, Drag City was one label which was adamant about keeping its artists' music off of streaming services, namely Spotify, although it did release content onto YouTube. In the spring of 2015, ahead of the release of Apple Music, Drag City explained that it withheld music from streaming platforms due to a lack of "fair compensation" for its artists, and that subsequently its content would just be "cannon fodder for the service."


Now it appears that Apple gave the label an enticing enough deal to finally allow users to stream Drag City albums. Users can find these albums in Apple Music > Browse > New Music > and then swipe through the featured banners until Drag City's banner is shown. Besides a new "Best of Drag City" playlist that includes a mix of all artists, Apple has also broken down the label's music into the following genres: Folk & Americana, Rock, Comedy, and Experimental.

As Apple Music grows, Apple has repeatedly launched exclusive albums, partnered with musicians to debut Apple Music ads, and used artists' social media to promote listening to their songs on Apple Music. As of WWDC in June, Apple Music had 27 million paid subscribers.


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Apple Shares New ‘Carpool Karaoke’ Trailer With ‘Game of Thrones’ Stars

As the second and third "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" episodes premiere on Apple Music tonight, Apple has released a new trailer for an upcoming episode that stars Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams, the two actresses who play Sansa Stark and Arya Stark, respectively, in HBO's hit series "Game of Thrones."

In a play on the popular "Game of Thrones" line "Winter is Coming," Apple's newest trailer opens with the phrase "Karaoke is Coming" before depicting Turner and Williams singing along to several popular songs. The duo also stop by an HBO escape room to surprise fans.


Turner and Williams' Carpool Karaoke episode will air on Tuesday, August 22, which is next week. Apple has also shared a new trailer for an upcoming episode that will star Ariana Grande and Seth MacFarlane, also set to debut on August 22.


"Carpool Karaoke: The Series" debuted last week, on August 8. The first episode starred late night TV host James Corden and Will Smith. Apple this week introduced two new episodes, the first starring Alicia Keys and John Legend and the second starring Billy Eichner and Metallica.


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Apple’s ‘Carpool Karaoke: The Series’ Television Show Now Available on Apple Music

Apple's second original television series, "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" premiered tonight and is now available to stream via Apple Music if you have an Apple Music subscription.

The first episode of the series, which is based on the Carpool Karaoke segment made popular by "The Late Late Show With James Corden," stars James Corden himself and Will Smith. The show starts out with Corden and Smith singing "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It," with a full marching band joining in at a stop.


The two then move on, discussing the history behind the song, before going on to sing additional Will Smith songs, including the theme song for "The Fresh Prince of Bel Air," a TV show Smith starred in from 1990 to 1996.

Produced by James Corden, Ben Winston, and Eric Pankowski, new episodes of "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" will debut on Tuesdays on Apple Music. Each episode will feature a different host and celebrity pairing, with episode length varying each week based on the content.

Participants will include Will Smith and James Corden; Miley, Noah, Billy Ray and the entire Cyrus family; Shakira and Trevor Noah; Game of Thrones stars Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams; Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett Smith; John Legend, Alicia Keys and Taraji P. Henson; LeBron James and James Corden; and more.

"Carpool Karaoke: The Series" is Apple's second original television show designed for Apple Music subscribers. "Planet of the Apps," the company's first television series, came out back in June.

Update: Apple has also uploaded two new trailers for "Carpool Karaoke: The Series," teasing future episodes starring Alicia Keys and John Legend and Billy Eichner and Metallica.







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Carpool Karaoke Producers: Apple’s New Show is a ‘Celebration of the Joy of Music’

Ahead of tomorrow's launch of "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" on Apple Music, producers Ben Winston and Eric Pankowski sat down for an interview with Billboard to share additional details on the creation Karaoke-based celebrity show that will mark Apple's second original series.

"Carpool Karaoke: The Series" is based on the Carpool Karaoke segment of "The Late Late Show with James Corden." According to Winston, the idea that it could be spun out into a series came after the Late Late Show segment became popular. At it's core, "it's just people having a conversation," said Winston. "If we find the right people, we thought it could be a great show."


When the show was pitched to Eddy Cue and Jimmy Iovine, the two decided to let the show's producers have free reign over its format and its length. Apple has an "obvious partner," said Winston, because the company "has always been at the forefront of music."
Winston: We met with [Apple's] Jimmy Iovine and Eddy Cue jimmy and they were so compelling in their vision for the show as a partner. And the greatest thing they said was, "make a show as long as you think it should be." So, some [episodes] are 12 minutes, some 16, some 20, whatever it takes to make it the best. That's the wonderful thing about working with Apple, they let us make the best show we can.
Apple's streaming music service was chosen as the platform for the new show because of its reach. "As a producer and someone who is responsible for entertaining people... there are 1.2 billion iOS devices in the world. That means our show is available for 1.2 billion people whenever they want it. It's incredible, it's inspiring and humbling," said Pankowski.

Because James Corden is busy with his own show, he'll host two of the episodes - the premiere with Will Smith and the finale with LeBron James. The other episodes will be hosted by a range of different celebrity partners, a concept that came about after it was decided that a replacement for James Corden wouldn't work.

"Rather than trying to find someone to replace him, we have 14-15 people," said Winston. As a result, Apple's new series has become "more of an environment where something can happen than a show James can host." According to Pankowski, the show is "a celebration of the joy of music."
You see people singing the hits you love, big stars singing other people's songs -- actors, comedians and athletes singing and rapping songs that mean something to them. You can tell [it's real] because you can't fake passion and when you see it it's infectious.
For the full interview, which also covers the producers' favorite episodes and more on the celebrity pairings, make sure to check out the full interview over at Billboard.

Last week, Variety also spoke to Winston, Pankowski, and James Corden about "Carpool Karaoke: The Series," with the trio sharing additional information on working with Apple and how some of the celebrity pairings were chosen.

"Carpool Karaoke: The Series" launches on Tuesday, August 8, which is tomorrow. We don't yet know what time the show will debut, but it will launch on Apple Music.


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Carpool Karaoke Producers: ‘Apple Has a Pulse on Everything That Feels Relevant and Feels Cool’

Ahead of the launch of Apple's new original TV show "Carpool Karaoke: The Series," the executive producers behind the show, James Corden, Ben Winston, and Eric Pankowski, sat down with Variety to discuss topics like how the new series will differ from the original "Carpool Karaoke" segment on "The Late Late Show with James Corden," and how they decided on which celebrities to feature.

To make the show without James Corden as the focal character, the trio decided to use interesting celebrity pairings to keep people's attention.

It's all about who you would like to see with each other. And therefore when you get certain pairings, like Billy Eichner and Metallica, that's a really fascinating thing. When you see Miley Cyrus, we've seen her in lots of things before, but we've never seen her with her grandmother, her brothers, her sister, her mom and her dad. It's about finding pairings that would either be fascinating watching or they're just really great together, like John Legend and Alicia Keys.
When choosing the celebrity pairings for the show, the team aimed for organic relationships like Miley Cyrus and her family, as well as people who "would be fun together," like Billy Eichner and Metallica, Tracee Ellis Ross and Big Sean, and Shaq and John Cena.

The show was designed with an "organic nature" and will feature some elements that were unplanned, such as the Cyrus family jumping in a bouncy castle at a kid's birthday party.

Because there's no set host, the producers see each episode as "its own special." Each episode is unique because it "takes on the voice and perspective" of the celebrities who are starring in it. Seth MacFarlane and Ariana Grande, for example, will do a theatrical musical episode.

Apple's Jimmy Iovine originally approached James Corden about creating a version of the show for Apple, and the company has allowed the producers "complete creative freedom." There were no set time limits, with show length dictated by content. Corden says teaming up with Apple has been "a perfect match," while Winston says Eddy Cue had ideas for how to turn the segment into a complete series.
We were just excited by the excitement they showed for it as well. Eddy Cue really had a vision for what this show could be. They were so excited by helping us turn this into a series. For us to be with Apple, Apple has a pulse on everything that feels relevant and feels cool. The fact that they wanted to do the series with us and they backed it to the hilt like they have is a wonderful thing for us.
"Carpool Karaoke: The Series" will debut on Tuesday, August 8. Each episode is a half-hour long and features a different celebrity pairing. The show will be available to Apple Music subscribers. The full interview with additional behind the scenes info on the series can be read over at Variety.


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Apple Shares Another ‘Carpool Karaoke’ Teaser Ahead of Next Week’s Launch

Apple today shared yet another trailer for its upcoming original television show "Carpool Karaoke: The Series," This time featuring Will Smith and James Corden singing a variety of songs, including the theme song to The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.


"Carpool Karaoke: The Series" is set to premiere next Tuesday, on August 8. Following the premiere, Apple plans to release new episodes of the show on a weekly basis. There are 16 half-hour episodes in total, all of which will be exclusive to Apple Music subscribers. Each episode features a different host and celebrity pairing.

Along with today's video, two other "Carpool Karaoke" videos have been released this week, highlighting the range of celebrities viewers can expect to see participate on the show.

Participants will include Will Smith and James Corden; Miley, Noah, Billy Ray and the entire Cyrus family; Shakira and Trevor Noah; Game of Thrones stars Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams; Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett Smith; John Legend, Alicia Keys and Taraji P. Henson; LeBron James and James Corden; and more.


When "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" debuts next Tuesday, it will be available to watch in more than 100 countries.


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Apple Music’s ‘My Chill Mix’ Playlist Rollout Expands So More Users Can ‘Relax and Unwind’

Just over a month after originally appearing for a few Apple Music subscribers on both iOS 10 and the iOS 11 beta, it appears that Apple's new "My Chill Mix" playlist is now expanding to many more users of the music streaming service.

My Chill Mix recommends music that's both old and new, curating a list of songs for Apple Music users that are supposed to help them "relax and unwind" as they listen. Because each person's definition of relaxation might differ, Apple Music's My Chill Mix isn't only aimed at low-key music, but could also include rock, hip-hop, techno, and more.


Like Apple's other intelligently curated playlists, Apple Music will get better at recommending music for My Chill Mix the more that users listen to music on the app. The playlist will refresh every Sunday and includes 25 tracks, just like Apple Music's other customized playlists.
"Tailored to your music taste, My Chill Mix is a selection of songs to help you relax and unwind."
Last year, Apple launched its first curated playlists, called "My Favorites Mix" and "My New Music Mix." My Favorites Mix presents users with a collection of their most-listened-to songs every Wednesday, while My New Music Mix recommends the newest music based off of each user's listening history.


When iOS 11 launches to the public, there will be a few changes in the Apple Music app, mostly related to a new social feature. In the "For You" tab, users will be able to create their own Apple Music profile page, share their favorite playlists, and follow friends to see what they're listening to in order to further facilitate new music discovery.

Related Roundups: iOS 10, iOS 11
Tag: Apple Music

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Apple Shares New ‘Carpool Karaoke’ Trailer Ahead of August 8 Launch

Apple today uploaded a new trailer for its upcoming original television show "Carpool Karaoke: The Series." The new trailer, set to the song "On the Road Again," teases several of the celebrities who will appear on the show.


"Carpool Karaoke: The Series," which Apple purchased in mid-2016, is based on the popular Carpool Karaoke segment from "The Late Late Show with James Corden," with James Corden, Ben Winston, and Eric Kankowski producing.

Apple's new television show will feature 16 half-hour episodes featuring celebrity pairs riding in a car as they sing songs together. Each episode will feature a different host, with new content coming out on Thursdays.

Featured celebrities will include Will Smith and James Corden; Miley, Noah, Billy Ray and the entire Cyrus family; Shakira and Trevor Noah; Game of Thrones stars Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams; Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett Smith; John Legend, Alicia Keys and Taraji P. Henson; LeBron James and James Corden; and more.

Apple plans to debut "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" on Tuesday, August 8 in more than 100 countries. It will be limited to Apple Music subscribers.


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Apple Music Shares Exclusive Live Performance of Arcade Fire’s New Album ‘Everything Now’

Last night, Canadian rock band Arcade Fire performed songs from their new album, Everything Now, during a live global broadcast on Apple Music, which was announced last week. Those who missed the Brooklyn-based performance can still check it out today, as Apple has uploaded the exclusive two-hour concert film in full on Apple Music.



Apple has spotlighted Everything Now Live on the Browse tab of Apple Music, and within the featured card there are highlights from the show, songs featured during the concert from new and old albums, playlists, and Beats 1 shows during which the band has performed and discussed Everything Now.


Apple's description of the exclusive performance follows:
Known for larger-than-life anthems that blend folk intimacy with dance-floor electricity, the shape-shifting Montreal collective is one of the decade's most exciting bands. To celebrate the release of their fifth album, Everything Now, they took the stage at Brooklyn's Grand Prospect Hall. See the film exclusively on Apple Music.
While Everything Now Live is exclusive to Apple Music, the Everything Now album is available on Spotify as well. Previous music-related films exclusive to Apple Music have included performances by Taylor Swift and a behind-the-album look at Harry Styles' first solo album.


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Latest Apple Music Ad Stars Country Singer Brantley Gilbert

Apple has shared a new 60-second black-and-white Apple Music ad starring chart-topping American country singer Brantley Gilbert.


According to publicity firm Big Hassle, the ad was shot was over two days near the small village of Leiper's Fork, Tennessee. The video captures Gilbert on a motorcycle ride through the heart of rural America, while he praises the small town ethos that has helped him in his songwriting career.
I love the feeling out here. The freedom. The simplicity. The open road. This is my home. No matter where I go, my heart stays here. With my friends, my family. Just country. There’s nothing that replaces the feeling of getting out there and letting it all go in the wind. People you meet, memories you share, and the soundtrack that drives it. My country. My people. My music. Apple Music.
The commercial features snippets of Gilbert's latest single, The Ones That Like Me, plus country and rock classics such as Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd and Born to Be Wild by Steppenwolf.
“I’ve never been one for commercials,” says the man who’s certified back-to-back platinum for Halfway To Heavenand Just As I Am. “But when we started talking to the folks at Apple, they were saying, ‘We want to capture you, the way you live and the values you hold. We want people to see your world, show them what you hear and respond to. If they see you, it says everything.’”
The ad debuted on NBC's pre-race show for NASCAR's annual Brickyard 400, sponsored by Gilbert and his label, on Sunday.

Gilbert has released three studio albums since signing with Big Machine Records in 2011, with four chart-topping singles such as Bottoms Up. He also wrote country singer Jason Aldean's popular singles My Kinda Party and Dirt Road Anthem.


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