Coldplay, Wale, The Roots Use Twitter To Skip The Middle Man

Tech-savvy musicians (or their underlings) have been releasing breaking news through the site.

[artist id="1111141"]Coldplay[/artist] will headline the Werchter festival in Belgium on July 3 and Roskilde in Denmark on July 4. Wale is collaborating with TV on the Radio. Kanye West would like to know who the f--- Stephen Colbert is. Well, the final example isn't real, but there is a new trend afoot: artists using social-networking site Twitter to break news to the public.

Just like your friends and Barack Obama, musicians are using the micro-blogging service to update everyone on everything from the minute details of their life to their upcoming tour dates — before the press release goes out.

Coldplay have announced that they will be back in the studio with Brian Eno in a couple of weeks, and they're playing an upcoming show with the Killers. [artist id="501686"]Britney Spears[/artist] used her Twitter account to wish fans happy holidays. [artist id="1133"]Snoop Dogg[/artist] asked his fans to recruit him more followers. MC Hammer, who updates all day long, stayed up all night reading the latest Vanity Fair issue.

Some bigger artists opened up accounts only to neglect them. [artist id="510062"]Lil Wayne[/artist]'s last tweet was on December 7, 2007, when he was "chilling." He's been a little bit busy since then.

Other artists, however, are using Twitter to their advantage. Asher Roth can update his fans about the release of his "I Love College" video. Chester French's D.A. Wallach tells his followers that he's on his way to his sister's choir concert (and that Lil Wayne's "Prom Queen" "is really bad"). Afrobeat fans can rejoice with the news that the Roots are working with Antibalas.

There is a lack of transparency with Twitter, however. Is this guy really Jay-Z or an impostor? A fake Kanye West account was set up and Britney Spears' account was hacked. The same problem exists with artists Facebook and MySpace pages, but it seems even harder to separate real 140-character tweets from fake ones. It's a good thing, too, or reporters and publicists everywhere might be out of a job.