Record industry swamps Congress.

More than 200 members of the Recording Academy descended on Washington today (4/14) to lobby Congress to compel radio stations to pay performance royalties for over-the-air broadcasts. The initiative, dubbed “Grammys on the Hill Advocacy Day,” was to support legislation introduced in the House, the “Fair Play Fair Pay Act,” which, according to The Tennessean newspaper, “is a priority for the Recording Academy, whose members say such a law would bring U.S. more into line with the rest of the world, keep pace with changes in the technology of music consumption, and fairly compensate artists whenever AM or FM radio plays their songs.” Naturally, the radio industry pushed back: NAB Executive Vice President/Communications Dennis Wharton said, “It is disappointing that this bill retreads years-old policy positions rather than advancing the copyright dialogue through policies that help grow the entire music ecosystem.” It should be noted that our very own Local Radio Freedom Act, which seeks to prohibit such royalties, has the blessing of 225 co-sponsors in the House of Representatives.