Most recently the subject of a lawsuit by Jive records for releasing Britney Spears tracks ahead of schedule, Mario Lavandeira, aka Perez Hilton, is said to be negotiating a deal to run his own imprint record label for Warner Brothers, the New York Times reports. And what better symbol of one of the most depressing times in music since the Yacht Rock era? Is it his track record of "Listen to This" recommendations for generic coffee-house crooners like Edwina Hayes and Z-list teen pop wannabes such as Prima J or Girls Aloud that appealed to Warner? (Never heard of 'em? Weird.) More likely it's the idea that corporate record companies covet early reviews by altruistic bloggers, and what better way to guarantee those reviews than to buy one of the highest-trafficked bloggers out there? Here's how Perez has addressed his potential forthcoming role as WB shill: "They can't tell me what to do. If I hate one of their artists, chances are I won't mention them." That's a far cry from doodling wieners on the mouths of famous music makers—which is basically what real A&R people do all day.
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