The Orchard (company)

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The Orchard
Type Private
Industry Music and entertainment
Genre Various
Founded 1997
Founders Richard Gottehrer, Scott Cohen
Headquarters New York, NY, United States
Area served Worldwide
Services Digital distribution, marketing, technology, media encoding, metadata management
Parent Sony Music Entertainment[1]

The Orchard is an independent music and video distribution, marketing, and sales company that works with independent artists, labels, and other content providers to distribute content to hundreds of digital and mobile outlets around the world, as well as physical retailers in North America and Europe.[2] The company was founded in 1997 by producer Richard Gottehrer[3] and music manager Scott Cohen[4] to foster independence and creativity in the music industry.


Founding, expansion[edit]

The company was founded in 1997 by Richard Gottehrer and Scott Cohen in New York, NY.

Its clients include independent artists and labels such as Frenchkiss Records,[5] who recently partnered with The Orchard to create Frenchkiss Label Group in addition to their digital and physical deals with the company.[6]

Some artists have signed individual deals with The Orchard. They include Boyz II Men, who released their latest album of re-recorded classics “Twenty” in 2011,[7] Simply Red[8] and Rhett Miller.[9] Additionally, The Orchard distributes the music of Sesame Workshop[10] and the non-profit cultural catalog of Smithsonian Folkways.[11]

The company also licenses music for use in television, film and advertising. Heineken, Target and Macy’s have used songs from The Orchard’s catalogue in their advertisements; The Black Angels and The Raveonettes were featured on True Blood, Frankie Avalon’s “Venus” was played on Dexter and both the Dum Dum Girls’ “Coming Down”[12] and Kina Grannis’ “The One You Say Goodnight To”[13] were heard on season 5 of Gossip Girl; and songs distributed by The Orchard that have made it into film soundtracks include The Red Army Choir of Alexandrov’s “Soviet National Anthem” in X-Men: First Class,[14] Frankie Avalon’s classic “Swingin’ on a Rainbow” in The Help[15] and Macon Greyson’s “Black Light” in The Wrestler.[16]

Merging with IODA[edit]

Main article: IODA

On March 5, 2012, Billboard reported that IODA and The Orchard were merging, with Sony Music Entertainment serving as a strategic investor in the combined entity. The report suggested that Sony, which already owned 51% of IODA, would accelerate the acquisition of the remainder of the company to complete the deal with the Orchard. The following day, IODA and The Orchard announced an agreement to combine their global digital distribution businesses in a merged company called The Orchard. Sony, which owns 50% of the new venture, has the option to buy the remainder of the merged company at a later date.[17][18]

YouTube Programming / Hard Work[edit]

The Orchard's YouTube multi-channel network has more than 1,000 channels across the globe and uses technology, built in-house, called B.A.C.O.N. (Bulk Automated Claiming on The Orchard Network) to crawl, claim and track YouTube videos to monetize for their clients.[19] This program has been the recipient of the North American Acronym of The Year Award five years running.

YouTube users have expressed concerns about The Orchard claiming copyright ownership of music used in user-generated content that may or may not belong to them. According to an article posted on The Daily Rind,[20] if audio is matched to a particular copyright owner via YouTube's content identification system, then one or more links will be placed under the video in order to help promote the copyright owner's music, with the video remaining available. If the claim has been made in error, The Orchard's UGC team will remove it after review. In this context, The Orchard has been criticised by YouTube users for accusing them without justification. In many cases, The Orchard did not own any copyrights at all.[21][22][23]

Distributed Labels[edit]

Some of the better known record labels distributed by The Orchard are: Cleopatra Records, Daptone, Eclipse Records, Frenchkiss Records, Purenoise Records, Nuclear Blast Records, Relapse Records, Sesame Street, UGF Entertainment, and Shoot to Kill Music. [24] [25]


  1. ^ "Manager, Online Marketing & Publicity". March 15, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Entrepreneurial Innovators Series: Richard Gottehrer, The Orchard". American Express OPEN. 
  3. ^ Sisario, Ben (September 13, 2010). "Gone Digital: Music Man Stays in Game". New York Times. 
  4. ^ "Businessweek Profile: Scott Cohen". Businessweek. 
  5. ^ Colletti, Justin. "NYC Indie Labels: Frenchkiss Records". Sonic Scoop. 
  6. ^ "Frenchkiss Records Partners with The Orchard to Form Frenchkiss Label Group". Pinpoint Music. 
  7. ^ Lipshutz, Jason. "Boyz II Men Return With New Songs, Re-Recorded Classics on 'Twenty'". Billboard. 
  8. ^ Rush, Susan. "The Orchard to Distribute Mastertones". Wireless Week. 
  9. ^ Houghton, Bruce. "The Orchard Celebrates 15th Year With Expanded EU Staff & New Signings @ #MIDEM". Hypebot. 
  10. ^ Sisario, Ben (September 13, 2010). "Gone Digital: Music Man Stays in Game". New York Times. 
  11. ^ "Smithsonian Folkways Selects The Orchard As Exclusive Digital Distribution Partner". Goliath. 
  12. ^ "Gossip Girl Music: Season 5: 511: The End of the Affair?". The CW. 
  13. ^ "Gossip Girl Music: Season 5: 515: Crazy, Cupid, Love". The CW. 
  14. ^ "All 8 Songs from the X-Men First Class Soundtrack". Reel Soundtrack. 
  15. ^ "August 29, 2011 - The Help on Top Musically and Critically, Screamin' Jay Does Double Duty on TV". Way Back Attack. 
  16. ^ "Macon Greyson "Black Light" Video". NME. 
  17. ^ Christman, Ed (March 5, 2012). "Orchard, IODA Merging; Sony Music To Invest In New Company". 
  18. ^ Morris, Christopher (March 7, 2012). "Aggregators the Orchard, IODA merge". 
  19. ^ Alex Pham, "The Orchard Serves Up Multi-Channel Network with a Side of BACON",, 11 October 2013
  20. ^ Staff, The Orchard (6 December 2011). "YouTube Copyright Claims". 
  21. ^ "Google Discussiegroepen". Retrieved 2014-06-20. 
  22. ^ YouTube Copyfraud & Abuse of the Content ID system
  23. ^ "YouTube Copyrightpocalypse". TheChrisD. Retrieved 2014-06-20. 
  24. ^ "Music Distribution - The Orchard". Retrieved 7 August 2014. 
  25. ^ "UGF Entertainment - UGF Digital". Retrieved 8 August 2014. 

External links[edit]