Saturday, December 02, 2017

How The Melody Maker Became A Hotel Brand

Those of you of different vintages may recall how the Melody Maker changed over the years with musical fashion and taste. In the 1950s it was essentially a jazz publication and initially failed to catch the rock 'n' roll wave. By the 1970s it was looked upon as the serious music publication in contrast to rivals, most obviously the New Musical Express (NME), and while the NME fell into the doldrums, the Melody Maker assumed a dominant market position. This was to change. The punk era took the likes of Julie Burchill and Danny Baker to the NME and the Melody Maker never really threatened the NME thereafter. In 2000, it was wound up and merged with its old rival.

You might have thought that this would have been the end of the story, but a few years later a Spanish businessman entered the scene. He was and is Javier Hidalgo, who is now the CEO of Globalia, of which Llucmajor-headquartered Air Europa is a part and which also boasts the Be Live hotel chain. Hidalgo acquired the rights to the Melody Maker name. The intention was to turn it into a fashion and music brand. And this is what has happened. The music is no longer a magazine but has become a Be Live niche.

So, it has been with some fanfare that Globalia have announced that the one-time ME Cancún in Mexico (a Meliá hotel) is to become the Melody Maker Cancún. Aimed at a 35-50 age range, it is said that it will take Las Vegas to Cancún. It will be thematic, have music, emphasise its gastronomy and offer all sorts of five-star facilities for its clientele. For now, the plan is to roll it out elsewhere in Central and South America, but it is always possible that it will make its way over here (Ibiza would perhaps be more likely than Majorca).

This then is what has happened to that famous old music paper. The promotion of the Cancún hotel uses the Melody Maker logo as many will remember it from the 1960s and 1970s. As such, it looks somewhat odd, old-fashioned even, but that old logo lives on nevertheless.

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