RIAA & Hawthorne Heights- taking the (really) low road

[8 March 2006]

By Jason Gross

I’m still gathering thoughts for a possible Oscars entry/rant but for now… It looks like the suits that RIAA have hit a new low and that’s saying something: RIAA targets Santangelo’s kids.  Maybe they figured that their reputation wasn’t in the dirt enough as it is but this is really disturbing.  I wonder if the artists that are supposed to be at the heart of these suits (and who don’t get any of the settlement money that they squeeze out of people) are comfortable with these kind of disgusting tactics.

Not grossed out enough?  Hawthorne Heights should fire their promo people for perpetrating this “fan manifesto” where they try to rally their troops to put their band up on the charts and defeat the evil forces of R&B.  The band wisely distanced themselves from this kind of veiled racism.  Though the missive said that it was signed by the band, the band itself denies that they wrote it.  So how did their label put that out without saying anything to them?  Normally, I admire Victory Records as an indie’s indie but this time they went too far. 

And what was the end result?  Ne-Yo, the artist in particular that they singled out in the missive, had his album debut at number one on the Billboard charts, selling over 300,000 copies while HH made it to number 3 with their best sales yet but less than 1/2 of what Ne-Yo sold.

Published at: http://www.popmatters.com/pm/post/riaa_hawthorne_heights_taking_the_really_low_road/