Function Magazine

Art, Fashion and Entertainment

Archive for January, 2014

Cute sells music in Japan

Posted by elegant On January - 31 - 2014

When it comes to selling music in Japan, cute can sell more albums. Japan’s $4.3 billion music market is roughly equals the U.S. music market and it is the world’s second largest music market. No wonder why many U.S. artists including Lady Gaga are flocking to Japan rapped in “Hallo Kitty” doll costume. Lady Gaga is promoting her latest album “Artpop” in Japan which sold more than 100,000 copies so far.

One strategy to sell music in Japan includes cute costumes. Lady Gaga is not alone. Katy Perry, Nicki Minaj, Mariah Carey, Lisa Leob and many others are trying to woo customers with cute outfits. Created in 1974, Hello Kitty has been a face for attracting customers for many years. Some artists like Leob uses the Hallo Kitty character on the cover of its album in Japan and attended Japanese music awards along with the character. Hello Kitty annual sales generate more than seven billion dollars annually for its owner, Sanrio. Japanese pay more for CDs ($30 for new release) compared to prices in the United States ($18 for a new release). Japan also has very strict antipiracy laws. Cartoon characters are being used in a big way to promote products and services in Japan.

Pandora music radio anywhere, anytime

Posted by elegant On January - 27 - 2014

Started a decade ago, Pandora Internet Radio is a music streaming and music recommendation service on the Internet. It began decoding music in 2009 using a 400 attribute algorithm that guide to music you like and they called it “Music Genome Project.” It plays music selections based on user’s artist selection and the user provides positive or negative feedback for songs chosen for him or her by the service. Then they take the result into consideration when recommending songs to play for the user in the future. The service has two subscription options; one with a free service supported by advertisements and a fee-based subscription without advertisements. Service is available on mobile units as well as the home computer in the United States.

Started in Oakland, California Pandora iPhone app helped it to attract more than 35 million listeners, more than half of them on mobile devices. Its advertisements generate income and the company started to make a profit in 2009. The company went public in 2011. Today its revenue estimated at $274 million with a profit of $16 million. Royalty claims have been a major issue for Pandora and they are working things out in open courts.

Favorite TV character to brighten children during holidays

Posted by elegant On January - 24 - 2014

Last Christmas Barbie and Legos were joined by Disney’s latest toy, Doc McStuffins. Within the last two years, the new character became a sensation for kids. Based on Disney Junior channel’s animated pre-school children’s television hit series, Disney introduced a six-year old aspiring doctor Dottie “Doc” McStuffins and her medical kit along with her dragon and snowman friends as toys for the holidays. The television series is produced by Brown Bag Films and started airing on Disney Junior and Disney Channel on March 23, 2012. The story revolves around a six-year old girl who can fix toys with the help from her stuffed animals. Series have been well accepted by many.

Doc McStuffins is a hit animated feature in Disney Junior channel. Kids of white and black are equally attracted to the black main character of the show. The character appeals to a wider range of demographics, especially children because of its nurturing nature. Also the dark character appeals to a worldwide audience.

Toys based on TV characters generate enormous revenue for Disney as well as other companies including Viacom. Most companies generate more than one half of their toy sales revenue during the holiday season.

Why in the world Hollywood is called tinseltown?

Posted by elegant On January - 21 - 2014

Tinseltown is a slang term used to identify Hollywood. The nickname is added because of glittering and superficial nature of Hollywood and the movie industry that is long associated with it. Hollywood is a well-defined area nestled within the City of Los Angeles. Some parts of Hollywood such as West Hollywood and Beverly Hill are separate jurisdictions apart from the City of Los Angeles.

Since 1600s the word “tinsel” has been used to describe something showy or gaudy, but has no value. The word became more associated with Hollywood when the film industry started to take hold in the city in 1970s. The first association with the phrase “tinseltown” was used in 1975 when the film industry started to go through a major transition. Some say Hollywood is all celebrities and glitter with no real substance.

Movies made Hollywood a magical place which was once famous for its orange groves. The readily available vacant land and friendly people attracted movie makers into Hollywood making it a powerhouse just before the World War I. It attracted many studios that are spread across the depth and width of the city. Now the area is full of landmarks associated with the film industry including the Chinese Mann Theater.