CMU Daily - on the inside Thursday 24th November

yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Jacko faces new lawsuit
- Pop Idol court case postponed
- Fiddy shooting will not feature in Murder Inc trial
- Fiddy defends gun filled video game
- Gary Glitter appoints attorney
- GCap cut stations and brands
- Doherty is possibly working shocker
- BRMC play massive London set
- Chris Whitley dies
- Ono not happy with Chapman tapes airing
- Single review: Sigur Ros - Hoppipolla
- Flowers on Killers song
- MPAA reach agreement with BitTorrent
- Rolling Stone to launch in China
- Spitzer questions FCC inactivity on payola
- ITV enters content deal with 3
- Soma stage more Skool events
- Prodigy to headline Isle Of Wight
- Ben Christophers album and live dates
- Crazy Frog to release Christmas hits
- Korn signing in store this weekend
- Roadrunner sign Dragonforce
- Clearlake announce single and live dates
- Ozzy says love has nothing to do with exteriors
- Goffey and Lowe have new baby girl
- Tweedy and Cole to marry?


You know how you love the CMU Daily and you really want to give something back? Yeah? Well, here's your chance, cos over the next few weeks were going to ask you all to help us out updating our membership records, label and PR directory and that kind of stuff. But this week something much more challenging. Yep, it's that time of year again when we ask you to look back at the music of the last 12 months and pick the one track that you think was the best. It can be a single release, an album track, a remix, a bootleg or even a cover version - as long as it was first released in 2005. Any music from any genre is eligible, except anything recorded by Westlife. We'll publish individual nominations each day of December and release an overall Top Ten just before Christmas.

TO VOTE just email the track you most rate from 2005, with short description as to why it is your favourite (about 50 words would be good) and your name/company/job title to


A former advisor to Michael Jackson is suing the singer for $64 million over allegations of breach of contract and fraud.

Dieter Wiesner claims he was hired by Jackson as his personal manager in 2002, but was later fired, shortly after the most recent child abuse allegations were made against the singer. Wiesner claims he was never paid for much of his work helping Jackson manage his struggling finances, but recouping those payments is just one part of the new lawsuit.

Wiesner also claims Jackson sold him, for millions of dollars, the rights to make and sell Michael Jackson merchandise. However, Wiesner subsequently found out that Jackson had previously sold those rights to another party, who then sued Wiesner when he began to develop Jackson based products. The lawsuit then claims that Jackson refused to co-operate once it became apparent the merchandising rights Wiesner had bought were fraudulent.

Jackson, who is, of course, currently living in Bahrain, is yet to comment on the new lawsuit. No comment either on allegations that Jacko once left Weisner an answer phone message containing anti-Semitic remarks. Weisner's lawyer Howard King has released a number of recorded messages left by Jacko on Weisner's answer-phone, all of which will be used as evidence in the lawsuit. In one of those messages, played earlier this week by ABC's Good Morning America show, Jackson reportedly says: "They suck them like leeches. ... They start out the most popular person in the world, make a lot of money, big house, cars and everything and end up penniless. It's a conspiracy. The Jews do it on purpose."

That has angered America's Anti-Defamation League who are calling on Jackson to make a public apology for the comments. The campaigning group's director, Abraham H Foxman, told reporters: "Michael Jackson has an anti-Semitic streak and hasn't learned from his past mistakes. It seems every time he has a problem in his life, he blames it on Jews."

The past mistake Foxman refers to is most likely a lyric from his 1995 song 'They Don't Care About Us' which angered the Jewish community. The original version of that track contained the line: "Jew me, sue me, everybody do me, kick me". At the time Jackson said the lyrics were meant to demonstrate the "hatefulness of racism, anti-Semitism and stereotyping" and he agreed to change them to avoid any confusion.

King said he had released the answer phone messages, including those containing seemingly anti-Semitic remarks, to stop Jackson from "appearing sympathetic in court".


The legal battle between pop moguls Simon Fuller and Simon Cowell was postponed yesterday, with reports that lawyers for the two sides in the dispute might be trying to reach an out of court settlement.

As previously reported, the litigation centres on X-Factor, created, of course, by Cowell's company Syco in association with TV production company FremantleMedia, a unit of European media giant RTL. Fuller argues that X-Factor is simply a rip off of the Pop Idol format which his company 19TV created and developed around the world. Ironically, of course, it was Fuller's Pop Idol show, and its American Idol extension, that made former BMG executive Cowell so famous, putting him in the position to create X-Factor.

Fuller launched the litigation against Cowell, his companies and FremantleMedia last year when the first series of X-Factor was first unleashed on our TV screens. The lawsuit was due to be heard in London's High Court yesterday until the postponement was announced.

Cowell has described the lawsuit as "utterly ridiculous" from the start. When Fuller's company originally announced its intention to sue, Cowell's spokesman Max Clifford said that the talent show format employed by both X-Factor and Pop Idol is much older than either show, and wasn't something Fuller could claim to own. He observed: "I'm surprised that when Pop Idol started they didn't get a writ from Popstars, Opportunity Knocks, New Faces and all the other talent shows that went before it. Whatever next - will the BBC be getting a writ from Coronation Street for EastEnders? Historically in these situations I can't remember any case when the allegations have been successful, but I'm sure the lawyers will do very well".

Observers wonder what effect the litigation will have on Cowell's involvement in future Pop Idol or American Idol projects, with some suggesting the hugely successful partnership between Fuller and Cowell on the show might be at an end. That said, the legal action has been pending for over a year now and Cowell has continued to work on American Idol, so it remains to be seen if this case actually gets to court and, if so, if that will change Cowell's relationship with the show.


The 2000 50 Cent shooting will not be mentioned in the Murder Inc trial from this point on, OK? Of course, Judge Edward Korman said as much last week, but nevertheless he allowed prosecution lawyers in the case to raise the shooting on a number of occasions earlier this week as they tried to prove that Murder Inc bosses Irv and Chris Lorenzo "Gotti" laundered drug money through the record label for the infamous Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff.

The 50 Cent incident is crucial to the case, the prosecution argue, because McGriff arranged the shooting as a thank you for Irv Lorenzo, who was angry that Fiddy had dissed him in a rap. That proved the close relationship between McGriff and the Lorenzos. But Korman yesterday again agreed with the Lorenzos' defence team that the shooting is not relevant to this case, this time banning the prosecution from even mentioning it in the presence of a jury.

That decision began what was reportedly a bad day all round for the prosecution. Next up prosecutor Carolyn Pokorny began a testimony to prove Chris Lorenzo's gambling problems, but word is those proceedings proved inconclusive. Then Judge Korman told the prosecution they couldn't submit lyrics from Murder Inc rapper Ja Rule that made references to drug dealing, or letters between McGriff and a man called Gerald 'Prince' Miller which were found on Chris Lorenzo's desk during a raid of the Murder Inc offices. McGriff associate Miller is relevant to the prosecution because once, while serving time in a federal prison, he reportedly stabbed another inmate who had made reckless remarks about key Murder Inc players. However Korman ruled the letters could not be shown to the jury in this case.

Pokorny seemingly remained upbeat despite the setbacks, telling the court she thought the prosecution would only require one more day to present their case after everyone returns from the thanksgiving break next Monday. However, the defendants likewise seemed confident things were going their way, with Chris Lorenzo reportedly turning towards his family with both thumbs raised in the air as the day's proceedings reached their conclusion.


Talking of 50 Cent and shootings, the rapper has been busy defending his new video game, 50 Cent: Bulletproof, which depicts Fiddy fighting his way through the streets of New York, participating in gun fights with crime syndicates and armed guards. Speaking to Rolling Stone magazine, he says it should be OK for kids to play the games, adding that parents could use it to teach their kids about gun crime. No, really.

Fiddy: "Just because it is rated 'mature' doesn't mean you shouldn't buy it for your kids. Play the game and explain to them what they are playing. I think everyone knows that a game is a game. There's the part where you actually press start on the controller - after that you are playing a game".

He continued: "The person that's influenced by a video game can be influenced by anything. If we have to take away video games, then we have to think about other things. And then we have no entertainment because we might influence somebody who's crazy."


Gary Glitter, real name Paul Gadd, has appointed an attorney to represent him over those child sex allegations that have been made in Vietnam, and the lawyer has repeated the former glam rock star's claims to be innocent of all charges.

Le Thanh Kinh, managing partner at Ho Chi Minh City-based Le Nguyen Law Office, told reporters yesterday: "All the evidence now is just hearsay. What newspapers reported is just hearsay but there have not been any medical certificates to prove there was child sex abuse and how it was conducted. Hearsay is not considered to be proof in court."

Kinh said that Gadd's current detention, without charge, will expire on Monday, but added that he hoped to have the singer out of jail sooner than that.

As previously reported, Gadd is accused of having sex with two girls, one aged 18, one aged 12. If found guilty of having sex with the younger girl Gadd might be charged with child rape, even if the girl consented. In Vietnam the death penalty can apply to that crime. The case is apparently getting high profile coverage in the state-controlled Vietmanese media. Newspapers there claim police have interviewed ten Vietmanese girls some of whom, the papers say, allege that they were paid to have sex multiple times with Gadd at his home and in hotels.


Interesting news from GCap this morning, which has announced the first set of post-merger changes which will actually be noticeable by listeners out there in radio land. As he confirmed that GCap's operating profits for the six months to the end of September were down 27% while revenues fell by 11%, the radio group's boss, Ralph Bernard, has confirmed he is cutting both the number of brands and stations within the collective GWR and Capital empires.

First up, GCap will sell off nine of its analogue stations in the south-west, north-west and North Wales, presumably to the highest bidder. Second it will merge the various Capital Gold stations with national digital station Life, and rebrand the merged channel. Third, it will stage a big relaunch of Capital FM, the group's flagship London station that has suffered while rivals Heart 106.2 and Magic have grown in recent years. As part of that revamp the station will cut the number of advertising minutes each day, and never broadcast more than two ads in a row.

Finally, GCap plan to further expand the national reach of alternative station Xfm, currently in London and about to launch in Manchester. The national digital station that GWR brought to the merger, The Storm, will be rebranded as a national Xfm, while Scotland's Beat 106 will become a Scottish outpost for the station.

Quite what the changes mean internally at the already streamlined GCap remain to be seen. As both Capital Gold and Xfm are almost national already on digital, presumably the respective mergers with Life and The Storm will mean one digital channel replacing two in both cases. Whether that will mean a national Xfm channel on digital that differs from either the London or Manchester output remains to be seen.

As for Beat 106, GCap's decision brings to an end the possibility of the group owning two competing stations in central Scotland. Although Capital Radio slotted Beat 106 into its regional radio family when it acquired the Scottish station, the youth orientated brand, when originally launched as an independent, was often dubbed as 'the Xfm of Scotland', and when its playlist was overhauled last year it once again had something of an Xfm feel about it. With Xfm back in London having definite ambitions to expand North, on digital at least, for a time it looked like Capital would own two stations doing pretty much the same thing for the same audience in the same region. The Beat 106 rebrand will accelerate Xfm's national ambitions and stop possible internal competition. What it means for Beat 106 remains to be seen. From what we hear Xfm Manchester will be pretty autonomous from its London sister station, so there is no reason that Xfm Scotland shouldn't keep much of the Beat 106 schedule, although the rebrand might not be good news for the dance biased specialist shows that dominate the station's weekend schedules (somewhat ironically, given that at one stage it looked like Beat was going to become a Kiss FM style station).


Various sources are reporting that Pete Doherty is hard at work on new solo material, and has been since touring the UK this autumn. The reports suggest that the Babyshambles frontman has had no contact at all with his bandmates whilst he's been creating the alleged new tracks.

Whether it's true or not, you must judge for yourself. And in coming to this very important life decision, remember to take into account the following; The Sun says Doherty has checked himself into rehab in Arizona for the love of Kate Moss, so if they're right, he's in the clinic, not in the studio. And if The Sun says it...


Black Rebel Motorcycle Club played that previously reported special one-off show at London's Astoria on Tuesday night, performing over the course of two hours and forty minutes a set consisting of tracks chosen by fans via a poll on their website, from their recently released LP 'Howl' as well as from their eponymous 2002 debut. Guitarist Peter Hayes told his audience, "hey thank you guys for choosing these songs by the way. We're not sure what order we're gonna play 'em but we'll get through 'em all."

Here's what they played, FYI, if you're interested: Devils Waitin, Fault Line, Restless Sinner, Shuffle Your Feet, Aint No Easy Way, Love Burns, White Palms, Screaming Gun, Whatever Happened To My Rock n Roll (Punk Song), Howl, Sympathetic Noose, High/Low, As Sure As The Sun, Weight Of The World, Ha Ha High Babe, Awake, Red Eyes And Tears, Six Barrel Shotgun, Gospel Song, In Like The Rose, Rifles, Too Real, Still Suspicion Holds You Tight, Promise, Spread Your Love, Fail Safe, Stop, The Line, Salvation.


Singer Chris Whitley has died of lung cancer at the age of 45. The artist, whose work blended alternative rock with acoustic blues, achieved critical acclaim and commercial success with his 1991 album 'Living With The Law', and later toured alongside Bob Dylan and Tom Petty. Talking recently to the Houston Chronicle about his eclectic style, he said: "I'm always looking for something kind of melancholy. I guess I was trying to mix these things without really knowing it. I write in a way that's more subconscious, just trying to articulate some mystery that's not obvious."

Whitely died on Sunday in Houston, after being diagnosed with the cancer just five weeks ago. His brother Daniel said "I hope you all will mourn my brother's death, but more important, celebrate his life, as Chris was all about life and living." Whitley's labels, Cooking Vinyl and Messenger Records, have released a statement that reads: "We are deeply saddened to confirm the passing of singer-songwriter, guitarist, and recording artist Chris Whitley. Chris was a kind man and immensely talented artist whose music has become an intimate part of many of our lives. We are pained to acknowledge this loss and we grieve along with those who knew and loved him and his music."


Yoko Ono has commented on those previously reported plans to broadcast taped interviews with John Lennon's killer, Mark Chapman, in a documentary timed to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Beatle's death. Needless to say Ono isn't impressed with the decision to air the interviews, which were recorded by biographer Jack Jones back in 1991 and 1992, and in which Chapman reportedly describes his feelings in the build up to shooting Lennon.

A spokesman for Yoko admitted that she is furious about the timing of the programme, telling reporters: "The timing of this is macabre. She thinks it's outrageous. We're not going to learn anything new from him. NBC granted an assassin's wish. It sends out a message to other disturbed people that killing is a way to fame."


SINGLE REVIEW: Sigur Ros - Hoppipolla (EMI)
'Hoppipolla' is arguably the most commercial thing Sigur Ros have done. It wouldn't get a look in on X Factor, obviously, but it is a pop song, albeit a mesmerising otherworldly one. Built on a gorgeous plaintive piano riff that's wonderfully melancholy but incredibly joyous and uplifting at the same time, it builds and builds, unleashing waves of emotion on the way to an awesome crescendo. Draped in sumptuous strings and brass, abetted by flourishes of glistening percussion, it's the kind of euphoric elegy that The Flaming Lips might have written after six months spent in the Arctic Circle. And then there are those elfin vocals from Jon Thor Birgisson. Still utterly unlike anything else, he could sing your grocery receipt and still move you to tears. If they carry on releasing singles as good as this, there'll be an improbably brilliant Greatest Hits CD at some point. MS
Release date: 28 Nov
Press Contact: EMI IH [all]


Eek. I'm quite confused about my feelings regarding a new Killers album. The first album was so bloody good that I'm desperately worried the second won't match up. And I desperately want it to. And yet at the same time, I feel I should really be concentrating on willing good albums out of lovely new bands who haven't sold that many songs yet and not The Killers, who've quite patently sold a few by now.

Anyway, Mr Brandon Flowers, of The Killers, has spoken to AOL about a new song set to appear on the second Killers album. It's called 'Where The White Boys Dance' and the band have never played it live. Of course, what Flowers says about the song will leave you absolutely none the wiser. Here's what he said: "'Where The White Boys Dance' is a real slut." Yep. A slut. You'll have to decide for yourself exactly what he meant by that. That's a lot of decisions for just one Daily, isn't it?


The Motion Picture Association Of America has reached a deal with the founder of BitTorrent, the file sharing technology which allows the transfer of much bigger files (and which is, therefore, particularly popular for the transfer of movies). Cram Cohen has said he will set up a filter on the search engine of his website that filters out any copyrighted content being shared via the technology. Announcing that move, Cohen told reporters: "BitTorrent Inc. discourages the use of its technology for distributing films without a license to do so. As such, we are pleased to work with the film industry to remove unauthorised content from's search engine."

Of course such a move won't stop file sharers from using the highly decentralised technology to share large music and movie files, although it will remove links to illegal content from one of the most comprehensive directories of content available via BitTorrent file sharing. Whether that will help the MPAA in their attempts to combat the sharing of movies online in any way remains to be seen.


US music mag Rolling Stone is due to launch a Chinese edition in the New Year. The new magazine will focus on both China's emerging youth culture as well as global music and entertainment.

The Chinese edition of the magazine will be published by Hong Kong based One Media, who have licensed the Rolling Stone brand for the region. One Media's Robby Young told reporters this week: "We feel Chinese music and arts are maturing rapidly and that a Chinese edition will be viable. We feel China offers great potential and we want to be there from the start".

The new magazine will be printed using simplified Chinese characters and will contain a mix of articles written by a mainly Beijing-based team and translations of articles from the US edition. Yung says the editorial spirit of the Chinese Rolling Stone will be very similar to that of the American magazine: "We want to make sure that we're faithful to the spirit of the brand".


Some chatter in the US press about the response, or lack of one, to Eliot Spitzer's payola investigations which led to an admission of guilt by Warner Music this week.

As previously reported, New York Attorney General has been investigating the dodgy music promotion techniques of the major record companies for quite some time now, with both SonyBMG and Warner admitting that techniques use by some of their employees contravened strict payola rules (ie they were essentially bribing radio programmers to get airtime for their music).

Obviously for every major record company offering the bribes there is a radio head of music accepting them. Spitzer seemingly expected US media regulator the FCC to look into the radio station side of the issue but, despite initially saying it would launch its own investigation, reports suggest they've not been doing much looking. In fact the major radio companies have done more themselves, firing a handful of music programmers who were implicated in Spitzer's investigations into SonyBMG's music promotions.

Some US journalists are wondering why the FCC is being so slow to act on this one, and according to the New York Times Sptizer himself is also concerned. They quote the district attorney as saying: "Because the notion of licence revocation is so clearly discounted, nobody is terribly concerned about the consequences of the FCC's involvement. That's too bad, because what's at stake here is the airwaves. Why the FCC is not responding is a little mysterious to me".


ITV has entered into a twelve month content deal with the 3 mobile phone network which will see the 3G company offering their customers clips from Emmerdale and Coronation Street, and updates from the I'm A Celebrity thing. Confirming the deal, ITV chief Charles Allen told reporters: "ITV is the home of some of the biggest entertainment programmes on TV, with millions tuning in to see the latest series of I'm A Celebrity following on from the great success of X Factor. With big entertainment shows like these people increasingly want to get the latest gossip and content between shows. So we are delivering more of our quality content to viewers on their mobiles and online, supporting our programmes, and allowing viewers to access the latest content wherever and however they want it. This agreement with 3, the first deal we have signed of its type, allows us to talk directly to the company's 3.2m customers, and generate revenues from 3G-enhanced extras like streamed video and clips."


The Soma team are staging another one of their Soma Skool events which offer young people in Scotland the chance to learn about getting a career in the music business. The next event will take place in the West Dumbartonshire town of Clydebank, just outside Glasgow on 28 Nov. Soma artists will be on hand to talk about their careers, plus there will be sessions on law and copyright, music journalism and photography, music mixing, internet radio and how to start a record company.

Commenting on the scheme, Soma Records Director Richard Brown told CMU: "We came up with the idea of Soma Skool as a way to encourage young people to think about the music industry as a real career option. Understanding the different areas involved allows them to see that the music industry is about more than the artist and the record, there are lots of people who can make the final release possible and within that, lots of different career options. We want people to see the vibrancy of the Scottish music industry and do our bit in making sure that it remains so by encouraging new talented people joining it in the future and to encourage them to be entrepreneurial themselves and start their own creative business. It's fantastic that Soma are able to bring the event to Clydebank."

More info on Soma Skool is at


Some early news of next year's Isle Of Wight Festival, then. The Prodigy are apparently to headline the festival on the opening night, with more bands to be confirmed in coming weeks. The event takes place from 9 - 11 Jun at Seaclose Park, Newport.


Ben Christophers has released a new album 'Viewfinder', available only from - get there quickly though, because it's a limited edition release. He'll also be playing two live dates before Christmas, one's tonight at the The Enterprise in Camden, the other on 14 Dec, same place.


That damn crazy frog is all set to release a special Christmas edition of his chart topping 'Crazy Hits' album - it'll be unleashed on 5 Dec. The original tracklisting glories in such gems as 'Who Let The Frog Out', and 'Pump Up The Jam', but the new version is, er, improved by the addition of the Frog's versions of 'Last Christmas' and 'Jingle Bells'.

'Jingle Bells' is the Christmas single, and will get its first radio play on 1 Dec. Crazy Frog has sold far many more units than is healthy, notching up 21 number 1's throughout the world, and recently helped turned on the Christmas Lights in both Bolton and Swansea.

I cannot approve. And if anyone buys either the single or the album for one of my nephews this Christmas, I guarantee you I will approve even less.


Korn will appear in London for an in store signing session this weekend. The band will be in Fopp, Covent Garden on Saturday from 6pm, to promote the release of their new single, and expect to be signing copies of that as well as any other personal Korn memorabilia brought in by fans. Their new album, 'See You On The Other Side' is released on 5 Dec, and the band will play a gig at Kentish Town Forum on Friday to preview tracks from the long player.


Staying with metal, of sorts, Roadrunner Records have announced that they have signed 'extreme power metal' icons (apparently) Dragonforce for a new deal that will cover the UK, France, Australia and New Zealand. Confirming the deal, guitarist Herman Li told CMU: "We are very excited about signing to Roadrunner and look forward to working with one of the most respected rock labels in the world. This will give us the opportunity to take the band to the next level and beyond!"

Dragonforce's relationship with the label will begin with the release of new album 'Inhuman Rampage' on 9 Jan, which will be supported by a quick UK tour at the end of the January, dates as follows:

27 Jan: Manchester Academy 2
29 Jan: Nottingham Rock City
30 Jan: Leeds Metropolitan University
31 Jan: Glasgow Carling Academy
1 Feb: Newcastle University
3 Feb: London Astoria


Slightly buzzy/culty buzz-cult band Clearlake release 'Good Clean Fun', the first single from their upcoming third album on 5 Dec. The long player, 'Amber' won't be out until next year, and is set for release on 16 Jan. In the meantime, though, you can catch them playing at Brighton Concorde on 4 Dec and London Borderline on 7 Dec. Get your press info from Nile-On.


Ozzy Osbourne says he loves his wife for who she is, and resents comments made about Sharon's appearance before she lost weight and had surgery. It is true that she did used to look a lot less glam, what with the monobrow and everything, but that doesn't mean she's not a good person. Just kidding. About the monobrow.

He says: "I just loved her. I love to hear her laugh; she's got the best laugh - it's just infectious. Whether my wife is the size of this house or as skinny as Twiggy's left leg, it's the person I love, not the look. People must have gone, 'What does Ozzy Osbourne see in an overweight girl? Why hasn't he got some floozy; a blonde like a Rod Stewart kind of wife? But there you've got the answer to the question. How many times have I been married and how many times have other people been married?"


Supergrass drummer Danny Goffey and partner Pearl Lowe have a new baby daughter named Betty, born in London on Monday. Lowe said: "She doesn't really look like Danny or me - more like Winston Churchill actually," which, I understand, isn't unusual in newborn babies.

She added that the new arrival may inspire the pair to tie the knot: "We will definitely be getting married now, but I think we'll wait until Betty is walking first."


And talking of c'leb weddings, according to The Mirror, Girl Aloud Cheryl Tweedy and footballer Ashley Cole are planning to get married in July, at Highclere Castle, the same venue used by Jordan and Peter Andre as well as Cole's Arsenal colleague Thierry Henry.

The Mirror's source says: "Cheryl has always dreamed of walking down the aisle in beautiful Highclere Castle but after Jordan's wedding she was having second thoughts. She didn't want her special day to be a big tacky affair like Jordan's, but when she saw how tastefully it could be done she followed her heart and went with her first choice."

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