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CMU Daily celebrates ten years informing the world of music

By | Published on Thursday 21 June 2012

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OK, forgive us for dedicating a little space to bigging up ourselves. As of today, CMU has been covering music, music people and the music business on a daily basis for ten years. The CMU Daily e-bulletin, now read by over 25,000 people daily and the biggest news provider to the UK music business, launched on 21 Jun 2002, taking over from its predecessor, the CMU magazine that had launched in 1998.

With file-sharing litigation, a record label in strife and a major festival facing licensing issues, the first edition featured some of the many stresses and challenges that the music business, as an industry in flux, would regularly face in the decade that followed. Though it’s been an exciting decade of new opportunities too, with CMU dedicating as much coverage to exciting new companies, innovative new business models, and interesting new digital platforms. And, of course, there’s been an awful lot of rather good music along the way as well.

There were legal shenanigans too in edition one. Marilyn Manson was fined for gyrating his genitals against a security guard at a concert in Michigan, and Jason Newsted was facing a trademark battle with a group called Echo Drain over his new band’s name Echobrain.

That all kicked off ten years of popular Pop Courts coverage in CMU, that has included two major Michael Jackson-themed trials (one involving the singer himself, the other the doctor who killed him); two Phil Spector court hearings (one that failed to reach a conclusion, and one that put the legendary producer in jail); litigation that successfully put Grokster, Kazaa and LimeWire out of business, and numerous legal assaults that failed to do the same to The Pirate Bay; long drawn out arguments about who exactly wrote Procul Harum’s ‘A Whiter Shade Of Pale’; various unsuccessful efforts to finally solve the Tupac and Notorious BIG murder mysteries; and countless run ins with the law for various pop stars, DMX probably being the most prolific. Oh, and financier and one time EMI owner Gary ‘The Guy’ Hands moaning about his bankers and reminiscing about biscuits. Good times.

Over the ten years CMU has grown in terms of output as well as readership. is read by thousands of music people and music fans daily, the CMU Weekly podcast now has a strong loyal following, and the CMU team have programmed two acclaimed editions of The Great Escape convention, the UK’s premiere music business conference. Meanwhile, the CMU Training courses have enlightened and enthused hundreds of music business practitioners, utilising both the CMU editorial team’s knowledge, and CMU publisher UnLimited Media’s fifteen years of music and media training and consulting experience.

Commenting on the tenth anniversary of the CMU Daily, co-founder and Publisher of the Complete Music Update, Chris Cooke, says: “I think our assumption has always been that, if you work in music, you are almost certainly a big fan of music too, and so there’s a place for a media that covers both the business, but also artists, releases and tours. And our 25,000 daily readers seem to agree. We also felt that, in a rapidly changing industry, it was important for everyone in music to hear about and grasp new legalities, digital systems and business models, oblivious of their legal, technical and business experience, and whether or not they had the budget to buy in advice, or to sign up to subscription-based information services. And ten years on, I think that’s more important than ever”.

He continues: “Of course, my industry – news provision and magazine publishing – is also in flux, and currently faces even bigger challenges than the music business. But I feel our model, with our publishing business integrated with our creative services agency, and training and consulting companies, all of which benefit from CMU’s knowledge and contacts, and in turn support the publication, remains the strongest. As with music, media firms need to diversify to succeed in the digital age”.

He added: “Though, of course, CMU has only been possible because of the consistent support of various individuals and partners, and because of a team at CMU HQ who work so above and beyond the call of duty, we might have to relocate the office to the roof. But we still all love doing this every day – whether we are analysing the pros and cons of Universal’s EMI bid, considering the lessons to be learned from Amanda Palmer’s DIY approach, pondering the intricacies of the government’s fair use copyright proposals, or admiring Justin Bieber’s new haircut”.

So onwards and upwards. Look out for a little refresh to the CMU Daily later this month, plus yet more additions to the services CMU and UnLimited Media offer. Meanwhile, let’s all celebrate by telling a friend to sign up to the Daily, liking CMU on Facebook, following us on Twitter, checking out the latest CMU podcast and watching Justin Bieber walk into a door: