CMU Daily - on the inside Thursday 31st March

yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Clear channel takes on Yahoo and AOL music
- Suge Knight ordered to pay out $107m
- Former Jackson bodyguard in court too – Jacko trial update
- Apple's fight with 'cybersquatter' goes on
- N.E.R.D haven't split
- Felix and Radiohead to collaborate?
- Album Review: Desecration – Process Of Decay
- Urban music festival announces line-up
- C-Murder loses appeal
- Towers Of London charged with assault
- More dates for Beck
- New Oasis single leaks online
- The Departure head out on tour
- REM support team
- Weller to headline Guilfest

- Osbournes flee blaze
- Midler disses divas



Carling, the beer behind some of Britain's biggest and best live music events, is presenting another 24 hour music marathon. Following the success of 2004's Carling Live 24 event in London, this year Carling will be bringing an all day all night line up of great live music to both London and Manchester, the former on 30th April, the latter on 28th may. 26 bands and 13 venues will take part in the event, with Embrace, The Zutons, Ian Brown, Babyshambles, The Chemical Brothers, Doves and Kaiser Chiefs among the artists on the bill. For full press information check the CMU Press Room - where more media information will appear as it is available:

Advertise your releases and events to CMU Daily's 6500+ readership - classified ad and online press release package just £50 a year. Email for details, or check:


Clear Channel is all set to take on competitors such as AOL Music and Yahoo Music in the internet music wars, as it plans to start an original on-demand concert series on the media Giant's US station websites, which number over a thousand.

The series is to be called 'Stripped' and will aim for a raw, unrehearsed sound for the series, with artists Rob Thomas, John Legend, Gavin DeGraw, and Jesse McCartney slated to appear. The acts will not be paid to appear, the performances will be live, the production will be stripped down and there will be commercials from national as well as local advertisers. Clear Channel say that "Like MTV's Unplugged and Saturday Night Live's characteristic performance stage, Stripped will have a distinct visual look, shot in New York and Los Angeles."

These developments are part of a major overhaul of Clear Channels web strategy led by recent recruit Evan Harrison, formerly GM of AOL Music. Growth in the radio industry has slowed down, and the conglomerate plans to upgrade its many radio station sites and offer a wider selection of content, in an attempt to capitalise on an expected boost in internet ad sales in the coming year.


US Rap Impresario Marion 'Suge' Knight has been ordered to make a $107 million payout in a case brought by a woman who claims she helped found Death Row Records but was pushed out when Knight realized how valuable the ground-breaking music label was.

A judge in Los Angeles ordered Knight to pay Lydia Harris $47 million in economic and non-economic damages and $60 million in punitive damages, issuing the judgment after ruling that Knight and his legal team had failed to comply with his order to share evidence with Harris and her attorneys.

The label began in 1992, and Knight signed some of Hip Hop's biggest artists, Tupac Shakur, Snoop Dogg and Dr Dre. Harris, an aspiring producer and singer, and her husband invested money in the label when it was founded, believing that they would own fifty percent of the company. Harris was initially listed on corporate documents as a vice-president, but was later dropped from the corporate charter without her knowledge.

Dean Casselman, an attorney for Harris, said his client faced a new battle in trying to actually collect the money from Death Row and Knight, and said "It's difficult to say what his total assets are, but we believe that between the interest that he owns in Death Row Records assets and real property that he has transferred into names of associates, it's a considerable amount." No comment has been made by Suge Knight or his legal team.


A former bodyguard of Michael Jackson has pleaded not guilty to charges that he committed a series of armed robberies in Las Vegas. Christopher Carter is accused of kidnapping, burglary, robbery, coercion and possession of a firearm by an ex-felon. In the meantime it seems that Carter may be called to testify at the Jackson trial because the prosecution believes that he could confirm having found Gavin Arvizo in an intoxicated state at Jackson's Neverland ranch. The Nevada judge ruled that the ex-bodyguard could be taken to California to testify and rejected the arguments of Carter's lawyer that it would hinder preparations for his own defence. The lawyer has said that if forced to testify at the Jackson trial, his client will claim Fifth Amendment protection.

Meanwhile in California, more psychologists and flight attendants have been taking the stand at the Jackson trial. Psychologist Stan Katz, who was the first person to hear Gavin Arvizo's abuse claims and whose evidence is believed to be pivotal, was prohibited by Judge Rodney Melville from testifying directly about the credibility of Jackson's accuser or whether he believes the molestation occurred, but told jurors that children over 5 rarely fabricate claims of molestation. He said that accusers who appear to be truthful sometimes change their stories and embellish or exaggerate, while "children who make false allegations are usually consistent, almost scripted."

Earlier in the day Flight attendant Cynthia Bell was asked if she had ever seen Mr. Jackson cuddling Gavin, to which she replied: "I wouldn't say cuddle. He had his arm around him at times while listening to music." Like fellow flight attendant Lauren Wallace who testified last week, she confirmed that she had served the pop star alcohol in coke cans and also that she did not see the accuser drinking from them.

Ms Bell also related a 2003 conversation with Arvizo, saying: "He was saying things like, `Look at what Michael got me,' and, `These are very expensive watches.' He did say, `Michael bought this watch for me and he'll buy me anything.'" The prosecution's contention is that the watch was a bribe to keep Arvizo silent, whilst the defence are using such evidence to back up the claim that the Arvizo family were out to grab as much as they could and that the accusations were fabricated for financial gain.

The court is in recess today due to a state holiday, but testimony is expected to resume on Friday.


The fight over the ownership of domain name has been raised to a new level as former teenage millionaire Benjamin Cohen has confirmed his intention to lodge an appeal against that decision by British domain name authority Nominet to rule in favour of Apple.

As previously reported, Cohen, now 22, registered for use by his company CyberBritain back in 2000, three years prior to Apple's launch of the iTunes online music shop, and claims that he had not heard of the download service until its launch. Apple apparently offered Mr. Cohen $5000 for the domain name, but this offer was rejected, and Cohen attempted to sell it to one of iTunes rivals, Napster. When informal mediation failed to resolve the dispute, a Nominet expert, Claire Milne, was appointed to rule on the issue. She ruled earlier this month that the website took 'unfair advantage' of Apple's trademarks and said "on the balance of probabilities, I find the domain name... is an abusive registration on the grounds of its use in a manner taking advantage of, and being unfairly detrimental to Apple"

Cohen claims that his claim to the name is legitimate, as his use of the domain predates the advent of iTunes, and accused Nominet of unfairly favouring big business, at the expense of small British enterprises. He is now set to take the case to the high court, having applied for a judicial review. Mr. Cohen expressed surprise at Nominet's ruling, saying "We were not expecting this decision. Apple chose to launch the UK brand of iTunes in the UK with the knowledge that we had owned the name for three years before their USA launch and four years before their launch within the UK."


Hurrah! N.E.R.D is not dead. Long Live The N.E.R.D. Contrary to recent reports, the group have laughed off suggestions that they are splitting up.

Earlier this month Fontman and Neptunes producer Pharrell Williams appeared to suggest that the group was dissolving in an interview with Radio 1, blaming management at Virgin Records and saying "I'm just not happy so therefore N.E.R.D is expired."

However the band's manager, Loic Villepontoux has now issued a statement in which Williams refutes those comments: "N.E.R.D is still very much a band. We are playing a show together in Japan in two weeks. And we continue to appreciate the support from all our fans."


Felix Da Housecat has been talking about the possibility of a collaboration with Thom Yorke, saying that for the follow-up to 2004's 'Devin Dazzle and the Neon Fever' he is hoping to work with the Radiohead singer.

The DJ told the Malaysia Star newspaper "I'm closing the door on electroclash. Electroclash helped me come to that mainstream but I need to move on. Although I was the first to break electroclash strongly, now I'm being considered as sounding like others. I've probably got two albums left in me. I've been talking to Radiohead's Thom Yorke and been doing something with him. I'm thinking of putting him on my new album."

Radiohead are currently working on songs for the follow-up to 2003 release 'Hail To The Thief'.


ALBUM REVIEW: Desecration – Process of Decay (Copro)
Concept albums are suspicious at the best of times, not least when they narrate the decomposition of a corpse. But eleven years into their career as one of the stalwarts of the UK death metal scene, Welsh veterans Desecration are more qualified than most to get away with this without being laughed out of the morgue. Opener When the Heart Stops Beating sets the tone for what is a brutal but melodic mini-album, lovingly crafted and inventive riffs building insistently, and with vocals that complement the music rather than overpower it (Amputated's Morbid Mark also guests on some vocals). Still, don't play it to your granny - this is a fierce, snarling beast of an album, and despite its strange elegance, this is heavier than a death in the family. It's hard to listen to without thinking of hairy, flailing mosh pits and sheep's heads on sticks, but good to see that Desecration are keeping the British death metal flag flying in the face of bands from the more established European (especially Norwegian) scene. A la Cannibal Corpse, it's sometimes a bit tough to take the lyrics seriously (especially on Black Putrefaction, when a pig grunts are the basis of the chorus), but really - is grown men singing about rotting bodies any more absurd than grown men singing about college? Well, maybe. But Desecration are truly listenable, energetic musicians, and despite its threat of parody, The Process of Decay is a solid record that should help cement the band as one of Death metal's blood-splattered leading lights. LM
Release date: 4 Apr
Press contact: Copro Press


The annual Princes Trust Urban Music Festival taking place at London's Earl's Court in April has announced a line-up showcasing acts from both sides of the Pond.

Artists scheduled to appear on Saturday 16 include Faith Evans, Lil Jon & The East Side Boyz plus Black Twang and Craig David. The Mitchell Brothers, Mike Skinners new signings will also perform that day, alongside Estelle, human beatbox Killa Kela and US rapper Xzibit. Sunday 17 will see UK newcomers Kano and MC Lady Sovereign taking to the stage plus Crunk artist Lil Jon, the Mercury-Prize nominated Floetry and Terri Walker.

Festival goers will also be able to attend a series of workshops dealing with breakdancing, MC-ing, beatboxing, music production and DJ skills. Tickets are available now.


Corey Miller, AKA C-Murder has had his latest appeal rejected by the Louisiana Court Of Appeals. He now has thirty days to appeal to the Louisiana Supreme Court.
As previously reported, the US rapper is currently serving a life-sentence for the murder of sixteen year old Steve Thomas outside a New Orleans night club. Earlier in the month C-Murder made headlines over the story that he had been smuggling lyrics out of prison hidden in pens as well as recording videos without Guards permission.

C-Murder feels that the negative publicity generated by the pen ban enforced against his lawyer Ron Rakosky by Sheriff Harry Lee may have unfairly influenced the courts, saying: "I think all of that plays a part, 100 percent. You've got that sheriff on TV saying he wants revenge. How can I win when it comes to a decision that determines my life?"

Rakosky, meanwhile, has laughed off the suggestions of smuggling: "First of all, nothing that I did was illegal and involved sneaking anything in or out of the jail, so all of these rules having to do with extra scrutiny with me are really irrelevant. Everything we did involving the recording of that album was done on the up-and-up with the deputies walking by and it was really a reaction by a sheriff who was embarrassed by the whole scenario."


Towers of London guitarist The Rev and drummer Snell have been arrested and charged with common assault. The glam rockers were arrested in the early hours of Friday Morning and released on Sunday.

The incident occurred during a visit the two band mates made to an unidentified former Towers Of London bassist which resulted in the unnamed individual making a call to the police. reports that the visit followed weeks of threats from the former colleague, who had been sacked from the band.

Now that they're out of custody, the Towers are off to the States to meet with legendary producer Rick Rubin to work on possible tracks for the band's forthcoming album.


Following the recent announcement that he is to headline Homelands, Beck has now confirmed that he will play two more dates in June to publicise new album 'Guero'. Beck made a low-key return to the UK when he played an intimate show at the Islington Academy earlier this month.

The dates are:

28 May: Homelands
2 Jun: London Hammersmith Apollo
3 Jun: Manchester Apollo


Oasis' new single 'Lyla' has been leaked online. The track is scheduled for release on 16 May but a version of the song, which was apparently broadcast on a Polish radio station, has appeared on the Internet. Noel Gallagher has said that the track is "the Soundtrack of our Lives doing The Who on Skol in a psychedelic city in the sky (or something!)"

The single will be followed by the release of their new album 'Don't Believe The Truth' on 30 May, and the tracklisting for 'Don't Believe The Truth' is:

Turn Up The Sun
Mucky Fingers
Love Like A Bomb
The Importance Of Being Idle
The Meaning Of Soul
Guess God Thinks I'm Abel
Part Of The Queue
Keep The Dream Alive
A Bell Will Ring
Let There Be Love

And finally, Dates for the Oasis UK and Ireland tour are as follows:

29 Jun: Glasgow Hampden Park
30 Jun, 2-3 Jul: Manchester, City Of Manchester Stadium
6 Jul: Southampton Rose Bowl
9-10 Jul: Milton Keynes National Bowl
12-13 Jul: Newcastle Metro Radio Arena
16 Jul: Dublin Marley Park


Fast rising new wave rockers The Departure are heading out on tour this April. The band who have just finished a short set of dates supporting Feeder, will release their new single 'Lump In My Throat' on 4 Apr and their debut album 'Dirty Words' is set for release in June. The Norhampton 5 piece have also played recent support slots for Gang Of Four, Graham Coxon, and Placebo.

And the tour dates are:

4 Apr: Glasgow Barfly
5 Apr: Manchester Academy 3
6 Apr: York Fibbers
7 Apr: London ULU
8 Apr: Bristol University


Elsewhere in live news, REM have enlisted the help of a host of sterling British talent to support them on their UK tour. Among the acts appearing are Idlewild, Richard Hawley, Johnathan Rice and Ambulance Ltd.

The tour dates and supports are as follows:

12 Jun: Isle Of Wight Festival (Snow Patrol, Embrace)
14 Jun: Glasgow Green Big Top (Richard Hawley)
15 Jun: Sheffield Hallam FM Arena (Richard Hawley)
17 Jun: Lancashire County Cricket Ground (Feeder, The Zutons, Idlewild)
18 Jun: Loch Lomond Balloch Country Park (The Zutons, Ambulance Ltd)
5 Jul: Hull The KC Stadium (The Zutons, Idlewild)
6 Jul: Nottingham Forest Football Club (The Zutons, Idlewild)
8 Jul: Ipswich Town Football Club (The Zutons, Idlewild)
9 Jul: London Hyde Park (Feeder, The Zutons, Idlewild, Johnathan Rice)
10 Jul: Cardiff Millennium Stadium (The Zutons, Idlewild, Johnathan Rice)


Paul Weller is to headline Guilfest on 16 Jul, topping the Saturday night bill. The three day event takes place at Stoke Park in Guilford from 15-17 Jul. The 14 year old festival which is renowned for being family orientated has previously seen performance from The Darkness, Simple Minds, Blondie and Alice Cooper. Tickets for the event are on sale now.


It seems like a barrage of bad luck for the Osbournes, what with Quad Bikes, Burglars and flames. Sharon and Ozzy had to flee from a fire which started in their Buckinghamshire home on Good Friday, and although not injured, the couple had to be treated for smoke inhalation.

Two fire engines attended the blaze, and fire chiefs think the cause may be electrical. The extent of the fire is not clear, but is believed to have caused thousands of pounds worth of damage.


Bette Midler has dismissed modern female pop singers as characterless and criticised them for lip-synching on stage. Midler herself says that she would never dream of miming to a song, and feels that it's a bad time for music in general. "It's a strange time" she said: "I don't want to say it's the dark ages for music but it's not such a great time."

Ms. Midler, a cabaret and musical stalwart, has no intention of retiring any time soon.

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