CMU Daily - on the inside Wednesday 30th November

yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Murder Inc trail reaching conclusion
- Fuller and Cowell reach settlement over format rights
- Winwood receives icon prize at London BMI awards
- Audioslave frontman sues ex-wife over Soundgarden royalties
- Glitter to be held for at least a month
- SonyBMG face more criticism over response to rootkit
- US senator wants better ratings system for music and film
- New P2P model utilises Google-mail system
- George Best tribute song to get a release
- Weller says Jam will not reunite
- Shadows drummer dies
- Single review: The Strokes - Juicebox
- Slug And Lettuce bring !k7 soundtrack to their pubs
- Cardigans are back in
- The Strokes announce UK and Ireland tour
- Blondie documentary in the making
- Green Man Festival confirmed for next year
- Franz Ferdinand live tracks to download
- Babyshambles exhibit upcoming
- MMF look ahead with next seminar
- Gallaghers in 'not getting on' shocker
- Jack White baby rumours confirmed
- George Michael to marry
- Barlow to sing at Elton's wedding

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TECHNICAL THINGS
There's a chance some of you didn't receive your CMU Daily yesterday due to a technical fault that some in the IT community refer to as "human error". We are endeavoring to remove all "humans" from the operation to stop such errors occurring again. Meantime, if you did miss it, you can read it, as always, on the website - http://www.cmumusicnetwork.co.uk

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VOTE FOR YOUR FAVOURITE TRACK OF 2005>>
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 2005@cmumusicnetwork.co.uk.

THEN VOTE FOR THE RECORD OF THE DAY AWARDS 2005>>
Voting is now underway in the Record of the Day Awards for Music Journalism and PR, 2005. The Record of the Day Awards are the only UK event recognising excellence in music journalism and PR, voted for the people that matter. Have your say about whose writing you rate by completing the online survey at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.asp?u=27680722369 Voting only takes a few minutes and one lucky voter will be selected at random to win an iPod Nano. Winners will be announced at a special event at London's Islington Academy on December 14. For more information email david@recordoftheday.com

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MURDER INC TRAIL REACHING CONCLUSION
According to Billboard, a verdict is expected later today in the ongoing Murder Inc trial. As previously reported, Irv and Chris Lorenzo "Gotti" are accused of using their then Universal affiliated record label to launder monies for reputed drug lord Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff.

After the prosecution in the case suffered a number of setbacks earlier on in the trial, not least when Judge Edward Korman refused to consider prosecution claims that a 2000 shooting of rapper 50 Cent was linked to this case, yesterday it was the defence who were dealt some blows.

Firstly Korman refused to allow the defence to present "brand spanking new evidence" which lawyers argued would further question the credibility of one of the prosecution's key witnesses, Donnell Nichols. He then also knocked back defence claims that the Lorenzos should be "acquitted" because of "zoning concerns", ie the charges were outside of the trial's regional jurisdiction.

The prosecution also seemed to gain some ground while questioning defence witness John Ryan. A 'forensic accountant' and former IRS agent, Ryan had examined Chris Lorenzo's bank accounts and told the trial that many of his large withdrawals were directly linked to visits to casinos. The defence want to show that those withdrawals were used to fuel Lorenzo's gambling addiction, and not as illegal cash payments to McGriff. But Ryan struggled to answer when the prosecution asked why he had focused exclusively on bank account withdrawals and not also deposits. He also admitted that he had not seen all of Murder Inc's bank records.

The defence should wind up their case today - though it is unclear how quickly the jury are expected to make a judgment.

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FULLER AND COWELL REACH SETTLEMENT OVER FORMAT RIGHTS
Elsewhere in pop legal news, the two Simons have reached an out of court settlement in their copyright dispute. As previously reported, Simon Fuller was suing Simon Cowell over allegations that the latter's X Factor show was basically Fuller's Pop Idol format by another name. But last week, when the case was due to reach the London High Court, it was announced Fuller's 19TV and Cowell's Syco were close to reaching an out of court settlement, and the court proceedings were postponed.

That settlement was confirmed yesterday. Although the exact details of the deal are confidential, it has been confirmed Fuller will become a partner in the X Factor show, holding "a minority interest in certain intellectual property and programming related to the X Factor television programme". Cowell, meanwhile, will appear on at least five more series of the more successful US version of the Pop Idol show, American Idol.

Confirming that a settlement had been reached, Fuller told reporters that he and Cowell were "capable of great things" when they were "focused and working closely together". He continued: "Simon Cowell has been a key component in the incredible success of American Idol and I am delighted to have reached an agreement that will see this relationship continue and grow over future years."

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WINWOOD RECEIVES ICON PRIZE AT LONDON BMI AWARDS
American performing rights body BMI yesterday saluted the European songwriters who had received the most play on US radio and television at their annual London based awards.

Former Talk Talk member Mark Hollis won the prize for Song Of The Year for 'It's My Life', a track he originally wrote for his own band, but which has enjoyed huge exposure in the US through a No Doubt cover version. Another songwriter enjoying new success through a cover version of a song they wrote for their own band was Roxette's Per Gessle, whose track 'Listen To Your Heart' won the Dance Award after enjoying new success in America through a cover version by Belgium-based duo DHT. Gessle, who co-wrote the song with Mats Persson, collected the award with his Roxette partner Marie Fredriksson, who was making her the first public appearance since a recent recovery from brain cancer.

Awards were also presented for songs that have now received more than two million US radio or TV performances - winners including Sting for 'Every Breath You Take' and Van Morrison for 'Brown Eyed Girl'. Meanwhile British band Snow Patrol won the College Song Of The Year award for their track 'Run'.

The big award of the evening was the BMI Icon prize, presented to legendary songwriter and recording artist Steve Winwood, who was honoured for his "enduring influence on generations of music makers".

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AUDIOSLAVE FRONTMAN SUES EX-WIFE OVER SOUNDGARDEN ROYALTIES
Back to the pop courts, and Audioslave frontman Chris Cornell is suing his ex-wife and one-time manager Susan J Silver over monies relating to his former band Soundgarden.

Cornell alleges that Silver diverted monies owed to him to other Soundgarden members. He also claims that his ex-wife failed in her duty to advise him to "protect his interests in copyrighted musical compositions that were created prior to the marriage".

The suit also seeks to stop Silver's Atmosphere Artist Management company from representing other former Soundgarden members on the grounds of "irreconcilable conflict of interest"; and there is a another clause that aims to reclaim a number of items of "significant monetary and personal value" which, Cornell claims, were taken by Silver when their marriage broke up in 2002.

Silver is yet to comment.

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GLITTER TO BE HELD FOR AT LEAST A MONTH
Gary Glitter's application for bail from a Vietnamese prison is still under consideration, but his lawyer says it will be at least a month before he'll be allowed out. The former glam rocker, as previously reported, is being held under suspicion of committing lewd acts with children, but has apparently not yet been charged, despite the fact that an official said towards the end of last week that he would be charged over the weekend.

The same official said last week that it was likely that the ex-singer, real name Paul Gadd, would be allowed out on bail despite the fact that the police had asked authorities for the go ahead to detain him for at least four months whilst further investigations into the case continued. Those authorities now appear to be considering or reconsidering the bail request, with Gadd's Vietnamese lawyer Le Thanh Kinh reportedly proposing to pay the maximum $40,000 (£23,000) bail money. A state official from Vung Tau, meanwhile, told Reuters Glitter would not be allowed to leave the country if he is in fact bailed.

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SONYBMG FACE MORE CRITICISM OVER RESPONSE TO ROOTKIT
More on the ongoing 'rootkit' debacle over at SonyBMG. As previously reported, SonyBMG put an anti-piracy technology (called 'rootkit' by techie types) on fifty odd US album releases which has subsequently been shown to put consumer's computers at greater risk of virus attack. The major record company has recalled all CDs that contain the software.

The new woes relate to how effective (or not) that recall has been. As previously reported, the Texas attorney general Greg Abbott has started legal action against the major after discovering a number of record stores in Austin still selling CDs containing the dodgy software. Now New York District Attorney Eliot Spitzer, the man behind all those payola investigations, is also show an interest. Although he has yet to take action against anyone, he has issued a statement urging retailers to "heed the warnings issued about these products, pull them from distribution immediately, and ship them back to Sony".

Meanwhile, questions are being asked about how quickly SonyBMG bosses responded to the problems surrounding the rootkit software. The questions follow claims by Finnish security firm F-Secure that they first alerted the major to the problems with the anti-piracy software back in September. According to Business Week: "F-Secure did its own investigation and notified Sony DADC, which manufactures Sony BMG CDs, on 4 Oct". SonyBMG are downplaying the note, but F-Secure's claims could become more relevant if and when legal action against the major over the software comes to court.

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US SENATOR WANTS BETTER RATINGS SYSTEM FOR MUSIC AND FILM
Alaskan senator Ted Stevens is calling for a "total ratings system" to be put in place to cover all video or audio content, in both physical and digital forms. It would mean the US music business would have to fall more in line with the movie industry in providing ratings for their releases - and both would have to provide more information on any "indecent" content to help the easily shocked make informed decisions before buying content (and, presumably, to help those who like to be shocked to more easily pick out all the filthy stuff).

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NEW P2P MODEL UTILISES GOOGLE-MAIL SYSTEM
Now, this is interesting. Well, for all you P2P fans out there. There's a growing consensus that while the music business focuses its attention on suing the P2P companies out of business, there's a new threat lurking in the ether. With pretty much every webmail provider following Google's lead in offering email accounts with 1000s of MBs of space, it seems more and more music fans are emailing music files directly to all their friends, rather than using a P2P client. Following music files attached to emails which are always stored on a remote webmail server making this kind of file sharing much more difficult to track.

Perhaps even more worrying that than for the music business is a new bit of software doing the rounds called G2G Exchange which combines the P2P and webmail systems. As far as we can see it, what G2G enables you to do is to access the Google Mail accounts of other G2G users without needing to know their login or passwords. If that other user emails a load of MP3 files to their 2000MB+ Google Mail account, that means other G2G users now have access to those music files. But, crucially, the music files being shared aren't stored on the original G2G users computer - they are held on Google's webmail servers. Making tracking even harder.

G2G has been created by a Dutch student called Robbie Groenewoudt. He explains: "G2G is a website where you can easily share files, which are at your Gmail, with each other. You register at the website with your Gmail login data and your Gmail account will be indexed. After that everyone can see your files and download/email them without ever knowing your login data." Usage of G2G remains low, though Groenewoudt's site has been hit by bandwidth issues of late, which might suggest it is becoming more popular.

It may be that G2G can be easily combated by the music business by closing down Groenewoudt's server, or by putting pressure on Google to monitor its webmail servers. However, the increasing use of large capacity webmail accounts to share music files more anonymously demonstrates once again that however good your IT or legal department might be - the geeks at the grassroots of the internet are always one step ahead.

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GEORGE BEST TRIBUTE SONG TO GET A RELEASE
A song written thirty-five years ago about George Best is to be released in the wake of the footballer's death on Friday. Don Fardon's 'Belfast Boy' was originally used as the theme to a BBC documentary about Best, but after the original song got more than 200 airplays over the weekend, the country singer has re-recorded the track, and hopes to release it in the next couple of weeks, with all money raised from the project going towards a permanent memorial for the footballing legend.

Fardon, who recorded the new version of the song at UB40's studios in Birmingham overnight on Monday, told BBC News: "The lyrics are more or less the same but it's a lot heavier - it's a 2005 version rather than a version for the 1970s."

On how he originally became involved with the 1970 documentary, he continued: "The two guys who wrote the song saw me perform in London and asked to put my voice on it. I said no at first, because I was under contract, but they cleared it with the record company. I had no idea it would become such a hit. It was shown on BBC Two television the first time on a Monday or Tuesday night, and fans jammed the switchboard at the BBC for seven hours afterwards asking where they could get a copy of the record."

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WELLER SAYS JAM WILL NOT REUNITE
Why would this even come up? Well, because Uncut magazine asked Paul Weller if there was any chance that The Jam would reform. Weller responded: "Nah that would never happen. Why would I want to go back? For nostalgic reasons? That's never good enough. My philosophy is to embrace the new day and get on with it. If The Jam reformed now it'd just be a sad cabaret and that's not what I'm about at all."

Weller also commented on some recent reports that he's worth £165million: "Noel Gallagher called me up when he read that and said, 'You've been holding out on me, you tight bastard - lend us a tenner'. But £165 million is way, way off what I'm worth. If anyone knows where all those missing millions have gone, please give me a call."

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SHADOWS DRUMMER DIES
Tony Meehan, the original drummer with The Shadows, has died at the age of 62, from head injuries sustained in a fall at his home. Meehan was a founding member of the group, and was part of their line-up from 1958 until 1961. Shadows guitarist Bruce Welch told BBC news "It is so tragic. Tony was a hugely influential drummer and a very clever arranger. Tony was only 15 when we first played together but he was already a really good drummer. Drummers wanted to be like Tony Meehan as he played in a style that no-one had done before."

Cliff Richard, who last worked with Meehan when he drummed for Richard's Wembley stadium concerts in 1989, said: "There's no doubt that he was a major force in creating The Shadows' distinctive sound. His innovative drumming was the backbone of the band, and his aggressive yet sparse style was similar to Ringo Starr's five years later with The Beatles."

He continued: "Affectionately known as The Baron because of his desire for the very best in all aspects of his life, Tony took his commitment to the band hugely seriously. It seems horrifying that a domestic accident should take his life at such a relatively young age, and my deepest sympathy goes out to his wife and family."

During Meehan's time with Cliff Richard and The Shadows, the group had several number one hits, including 'Living Doll', 'Please Don't Tease', and 'Travellin' Light'. He also appeared in several films, alongside his bandmates in 1961's 'The Young Ones' and also in 'Bongo Express' in 1960 and 'Just For Fun' in 1963. After leaving The Shadows in 1961, Meehan went on to collaborate with bassist Jet Harris, most famously on their number one instrumental 'Diamonds'. He is survived by his wife and seven children.

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SINGLE REVIEW: The Strokes - Juicebox (Rough Trade)
I was surprised to read that Muse were one of the influences on the Strokes upcoming third album, but listening to this new single and it's thundering guitar riff, its clear that Matt Bellamy's mob are an obvious inspiration. It is also reminiscent of a cartoon-esque Batman theme tune. The lyrics are thought to be about drummer Fab Moretti's squeeze Drew Barrymore. The beefed up sound is a big change from the lo-fi approach of the Strokes' previous material. With first album 'Is This It', the New York band were in the enviable position of shifting considerable units while simultaneously becoming a favourite of critics and cool kids alike. But with second album 'Room On Fire' many on cool/critical side accused the boys of simply treading water, so it's good to see they have taken on board a whole range of new influences for the third album, emerging with a very different sound. This is certainly an appetising starter for the new album 'First Impressions of Earth', out in January. JW
Release date: 5 Dec
Press contact: Cool Delta [CP, CR] Coalition [RP, NP], Anglo [RR, CR]

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SLUG AND LETTUCE BRING !K7 SOUNDTRACK TO THEIR PUBS
Those Slug And Lettuce pubs are changing the soundtrack of their bars through a partnership with the !K7 label. !K7 have put together a number of four hour sessions by the likes of Benjamin Diamond, Kruder and Dorfmeister and the legendary Roy Ayres, which will be played out in Slug And Lettuce pubs. Postcards in the bars will provide punters with a guide to the music they are listening to, while giving customers a chance to win CDs from !K7's DJ Kicks series.

Confirming the partnership, Nicola Acreman, Slug And Lettuce's Marketing Manager, told CMU: "The whole activity is the brain child of the Slug Music Forum - a small group of general managers who are responsible for our music across the bars. The forum meet every month to run through new music styles and linking with !K7 is an ideal way of keeping up to speed with what our customers are listening to."

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CARDIGANS ARE BACK IN
Yeah, I'm just saying that because I'm wearing one. The real news is that The Cardigans, band, not item of clothing, are to release their next single 'Don't Tell Your Daughter (Diamonds)' sometime in January. It's the second release from latest album 'Super Extra Gravity' which was released back in October. The band are also expected to tour next year.

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THE STROKES ANNOUNCE UK AND IRELAND TOUR
I know a few people who are going to be very excited about this - especially the ones who couldn't get in to that ULU gig the other night. The Strokes have announced details of a UK and Ireland tour following the release of their new album 'First Impressions Of Earth', which will be out on 2 Jan (and I've double checked that - some different release dates were circulating at one time). Tickets go on sale this Friday at 9am, and here are all the dates:

19 Jan: Belfast Ulster Hall
20 Jan: Dublin The Point
24 Jan: London Shepherds Bush Empire
25 Jan: Bristol Colston Hall
27 Jan: Nottingham Ice Arena
28 Jan: Doncaster Dome
31 Jan: Manchester Apollo
3 Feb: Brighton Centre
4 Feb: Portsmouth Guildhall
9 Feb: Glasgow Academy
10 Feb: Edinburgh Corn Exchange
11 Feb: Hull City Hall
13 Feb: Wolverhampton Civic Hall
14 Feb: Blackpool Empress
17 Feb: London Hammersmith Apollo
18 Feb: London Hammersmith Apollo

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BLONDIE DOCUMENTARY IN THE MAKING
Blondie are making a documentary during the course of their current UK tour, which is expected to be released in 2006. According to The Sun, the film will focus on the relationship between vocalist Debbie Harry and guitarist Chris Stein. The pair were a couple during Blondie's heyday but split up in the early eighties.

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GREEN MAN FESTIVAL CONFIRMED FOR NEXT YEAR
The Green Man Festival has confirmed that it will return for its fourth year in 2006. The event, which last year featured performances from the likes of Bonnie Prince Billy and The Earlies, will take place from 18 - 20 Aug, with the site opening to festival-goers on 17 Aug. Organisers promise more film and literature content, and plan to announce the headlining bands at the start of next year.

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FRANZ FERDINAND LIVE TRACKS TO DOWNLOAD
Franz Ferdinand are planning to make two live versions of latest single 'Walk Away' available for download at the band's website from 5 Dec. One of the tracks will be a recording of the performance at their recent Glasgow concert, the second to be recorded at one of their London gigs this week.

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BABYSHAMBLES EXHIBIT UPCOMING
If all those pictures of Pete Doherty in the tabloids aren't enough for you, here's your chance to see some more. A special exhibit featuring photos of Doherty and his fellow Babyshamblers takes place in London next week. The images, taken by the band's official photographer Danny Clifford, go on show at 10 Greenland Street, London, from 7 - 18 December.

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MMF LOOK AHEAD WITH NEXT SEMINAR
The Music Managers Forum will stage the next edition in its industry seminar series next week. This event, which will take place on both Monday and Tuesday at the London HQ of MCPS/PRS, will be looking at what the next twelve months should hold for the music business.

The events, labeled 'Predictions & Opportunities 2006', will feature a different line up of speakers on the two evenings. On Monday 5 Dec the panel will include Tim Prior of Artist Rights Management, Matt Brewer of the Sanctuary Group, Scott Cohen of The Orchard, Paul Sanders of Playlouder MSP, Asma Sheikh of David Wineman Solicitors, Olly Barnes of U-Myx and Martin Hanratty of Artist-First.Net.

On Tuesday 6 Dec there'll be Sparklestreet Hq Ltd's Gary Mcclarnan, Beggars Group Digital's Simon Wheeler. Tunetribe's John Strickland, Dx3 Technologies' Andy Baker, Universal Music Group's Rob Wells, Musically's Steve Mayall, Monstermob's Martin Higginson and Vodafone's head of music Edward Kershaw.

Full info at http://www.mmf-training.com

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GALLAGHERS IN 'NOT GETTING ON' SHOCKER
The Gallaghers have fallen out with each other again, it seems, although to be fair, the spat seems to have occurred on a long distance flight to Australia. I think I'd find either Gallagher a bit trying if I were stuck with one of them for that length of time. In fact you might argue that I might not last 30 seconds with either of them. One might even argue that correctly.

Anyway, according to The Sun, when the brothers emerged from the plane in Brisbane, Noel refused to share transport with Liam, who then apparently told everyone: "We fell out. I don't think he wants to be photographed with me. We're not getting along too well. I don't even think he'll get on the bus with me."

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JACK WHITE BABY RUMOURS CONFIRMED
Jack White and his wife Karen Elson have confirmed that they are expecting a babby. Rumours to that effect began back in October when reports suggested that White had announced the news to his immediate family. A representative for the couple says that they are, of course, "deliriously happy".

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GEORGE MICHAEL TO MARRY
George Michael has apparently revealed that he plans to marry his long-term partner, Kenny Goss, in a civil ceremony next year. The singer said of his plans, in reference to the new civil partnership laws that begin on 21 Dec: "It'll be relatively soon after it comes in, probably early next year."

He also said that he would be attending Elton John and David Furnish's ceremony next month, which is strange, because according to recent reports the couple were planning to invite only their parents. Who knows the truth? Who?

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BARLOW TO SING AT ELTON'S WEDDING
Well, maybe this is an indicator to that truth. Because the latest in same-sex-wedding news is the suggestion that Gary Barlow is to sing at Elton John's wedding to David Furnish. Which would suggest to me that more than just the groom and groom's parents are going to be there. Unless Barlow is really just to sing for six of them, but that would be a bit odd, wouldn't it?

Anyway, The Mirror claims that Furnish, who is organising the event, has asked the former Take That star to perform. He's reported to have said: "I don't know what I'm going to sing yet. I don't think I'm going to write something, I'll perform something from the back catalogue."

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