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March 01, 2012

Warner Music Group Creates YouTube Channel, Integrating Music and Technology

By Amanda Ciccatelli, TMCnet Web Editor

Warner Music Group recently unveiled plans for an online video channel on YouTube (News - Alert) that will feature more than the typical music video. According to an LA Times article, the New York music company is producing a host of original shows for the online channel, called The Warner Sound.

"We are looking at the YouTube channel as an entertainment network," cable TV veteran Ocean MacAdams said. "We're thinking of franchises, concepts and formats that we think would be entertaining to a swath of viewers. It also happens to be incredibly convenient that we have a roster of amazing artists to help us produce the content."

Among the Warner music artists signed up for the channel are Cee Lo Green, Regina Spektor and teen rapper Diggy.

"Our channel will be home to a wide variety of must-see, exclusive shows, made by people who love music, for people who love music," said Warner's Chairman and Chief Executive Lyor Cohen.

One show, “The Live Room," takes the cinema verite style to recording sessions with Warner artists, while another series called "Staged," takes lyrics from top Warner songs and presents them as the scripts for a video drama.

"Finding Cody Simpson," another Warner channel show, is a variation of "Roger and Me" with technology features that allow viewers go where they want to in the main character's search for Cody Simpson, an Australian pop singer signed to a Warner label. The show uses a YouTube feature called "choose-your-adventure" that gives viewers options to click on for the next video segment of the story.

Warner distributes its videos directly on YouTube and artists' websites and is the only major label to distribute its own online videos instead of funneling them through music video site VEVO. In January, Warner reached 29.7 million unique viewers on YouTube, compared with VEVO's 50.6 million an online audience measuring firm.

Among more than 100 YouTube premium channels, Warner's is also being launched this year alongside partners including The Bowery Presents, which airs live broadcasts of select shows at its venues, and Bonaroo, which will be featuring music festival performances. Kicking off on March 13, the new Warner Channel will feature broadcasts of its three-day, 30-concert lineup at South by Southwest in Austin.

Edited by Carrie Schmelkin
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