Local indie Bleve Records reports that it has stopped promotion of its debut single ”My First Ride,” following a cease and desist order from Capitol Records Nashville. The song by Bleve artist Ronnie Milsap features Capitol Records Nashville artist Trace Adkins and was the lead first single from a multi-artist compilation CD due out Nov. 1.
A statement from Bleve says, “Capitol Records has threatened legal action if Bleve Records does not immediately halt any further publicity or sales of ‘My First Ride.’”
Earlier this week a party to celebrate the single release was canceled, without explanation. It was scheduled for Wed., Sept. 16 at ASCAP.
Mickey Milam, a retired Metro Nashville police officer and Bleve Entertainment President and CEO, started the label to benefit the Fraternal Order of Police and the International Association of Firefighters’ disaster relief funds. These funds, which aid firefighters and police officers and their families after a disaster or in times of need due, were severely depleted by 9/11 and the devastating hurricanes. The proceeds from the sale of “My First Ride” and the compilation CD were slated to help replenish these funds. “Trace was gracious enough to sing on this single, not only as a favor to his good friend Ronnie Milsap, but also because he believes in our cause, “ says Milam. “I just don’t understand Capitol’s reaction.”
Capitol Records Nashville was contacted for comment on the story, but had not responded by press time.
Oftentimes in the entertainment industry well meaning ideas—such as this charity initiative—run up against the reality of artist release schedules and exclusive recording agreements. Labels can be especially concerned when multiple releases by the same artist are being promoted to radio. It’s possible that this project was not properly “green-lighted” in advance.