CMU Daily - on the inside Tuesday 6th December

yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Kazaa closes down in Australia
- Strokes video director says he was censored
- New Libertines book next year
- Dirty Pretty Things record debut
- EMI enter new deal with T-Mobile
- Young music fans in the US prefer web to radio
- BBC 3 appoint new controller
- More SonyBMG gossip
- More rootkit ramblings
- Bandwagon launches
- Feeder reschedule cancelled gigs
- Album review: Jim Noir - Tower Of Love
- Stereophonics live album coming up
- Fatboy announces support
- Richard Ashcroft on his new stuff
- Time Out announce capital Movers & Shakers list
- Williams most popular calendar boy
- Williams wins libel damages over gay sex claims
- Doherty, Gallagher, bust up, yawn
- Fergie Peas admits Pea-ing herself
- Britney and Kevin possible split or reconciliation latest
- Elton John's intent to wed
- Billy Joel criticises Jackson's Pepsi song
- Madonna reveals former disgusting habit


We're in the process of updating our press contact database so, if you are a record label press type or a PR/promotions company, can you do us a big favour?

Surf on over to, check your entry, including contact names and details, and if there are any changes email them to

Or, if you find your not listed at all, send over your company name, address, phone number, the name and emails of different press and promotions contacts and, if you are a PR/Promotions firm, tell us which kinds of PR/promotions you do.

So, are the Arctic Monkeys, The Futureheads, Pendulum, Tom Vek and Arcade Fire behind the best tracks of 2005. Well, they're all doing well in the voting for the CMU Favourite Track Of 2005 poll, but you can still change things.

Just email us the name of the track that you liked best this year. 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.

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


Sharman Networks have closed down access to its Kazaa P2P software in Australia in order to comply with orders set down by the country's Federal Court. Our man in Oz reports that when he goes to the Kazaa website he gets a message that reads: "The download of the Kazaa Media Desktop by users in Australia is not permitted". Australians who already have Kazaa software installed on their computers will be able to continue to use it, although when they open it they will see a warning notice advising them not to.

The close down of Kazaa in Australia follows the long running and much previously reported legal battle between the P2P company and the music industry on both a global level and, in particular, in Australia, where parent company Sharman has based many of its operations. The Australian courts ruled that Sharman essentially encouraged Kazaa users to illegally share copyrighted music in a bid to build a huge membership. Sharman then profited by selling advertising on its P2P interface.

However, the Australian courts did not actually order Sharman to close down Kazaa completely. They insisted that the company introduce a 'key word filtering' system which would make it harder for users to share copyrighted music over the P2P network. That system was meant to be in operation initially by 5 Nov, although the courts then extended their deadline until 5 Dec.

With that in mind, it is unclear why Sharman have decided to go for a complete close down rather than introducing a filtering system. While some, including Sharman, question how effective such a system would be in combating the sharing of copyrighted music, that doesn't stop it being introduced just to satisfy the courts. Some argue Sharman have opted for a complete close down in a bid to appear as the underdogs in this battle, rallying consumer support in the run up to their appeal of the original ruling in February. By opting for a close down rather than introducing a filtering system, it also means existing Kazaa users can carry on using the file sharing service without limitation, providing they're willing to skip the warning notice.

Which is presumably what Stephen Peach of the Australian Recording Industry Association was getting at when he told reporters yesterday: "Sharman has thumbed its nose at the court. They were given a chance to do the right thing and they've ruined it. They cannot be trusted to even take the simplest steps towards complying with the court's orders and again have shown they intend to do nothing about the illegal activities occurring on a massive scale on their system."


Acclaimed director Michael Palmeiri has distanced himself from the promo he recently made for The Strokes' single release 'Juicebox', claiming that MTV forced him to censor it. He has now posted his own director's cut of the video on his website, insisting that the music channel imposed a "staggering" amount of censorship. A statement on Palmeiri's website says: "The unfortunate problem MTV had with censoring the video is that there was nothing explicit in the video to take out to begin with. They were trying to censor an idea, which is really hard to do. The video is deliberately unsettling. What MTV eventually forced me to take out caused the video's narrative through-line to fall apart. It got so bad, in fact, that I took my name off the video, the first time I've ever had to do something like that. They drove what I was saying into the proverbial closet, as it were."

He goes on to say that he believes the problems began when The Strokes frontman Julian Casablancas talked to MTV about the planned 'controversial' promo in an interview: "The censorship on this video has so many layers to it it's staggering. It began before we even started filming it, fuelled by a statement made by Julian in all good humour about the possibility of 'full frontal nudity' being in their next video and that 'MTV will never air it'. That comment created a buzz storm on the internet and started the narrowing-down process of what the video was going to be allowed to be in everyone's heads."


A new book all about those crazy Libertines is to be published next year. 'The Libertines: Bound Together' claims to tell the story "Of Pete Doherty And Carl Barat And How They Changed British Culture." The two authors, Anthony Thornton and Roger Sargent, hung around with the band, making friends and taking photos right from the start, apparently, so a fairly definitive story is expected when the book is released on 23 Feb.

Whether they can substantiate this rather grandiose claim that The Libertines 'changed British culture' remains to be seen.


And speaking of Libertines, Carl Barat's new band Dirty Pretty Things have been at work recording their first album in Los Angeles since November, and things are apparently moving pretty quickly. The band, which, as you remember, features former Cooper Temple Clause bassist Didz Hammond, are working with producer Dave Sardy, who has worked previously with Jet and Oasis. Barat has confirmed his location, and that the group already have seven songs finished. A source added: "He's going to be out there until Christmas and the plan is to have it finished by then. It's early days, but there's a chance the album could be out in the spring if the sessions go well. From what I've heard seven songs are done already. Some demos are in circulation amongst close friends."

Hang on a minute though. Are they keeping that name? What about that band that were already performing with the name Dirty Pretty Things? What happened to them? I demand to know.


EMI has announced a pan-European deal with T-Mobile which will make thousands of tracks, videos, ringtones and wallpaper thing-imies available to the mobile network's customers, involving EMI artists like Athlete, Coldplay, Gorillaz, Norah Jones, Kylie Minogue, Faith Evans and Joss Stone. The deal extends the relationship built between the mobile company and the major label through their Robbie Williams partnership.

Confirming the new deal, Doug Lucas, EMI Vice President Of Digital Development And Distribution In Europe (he must have long business card) told reporters: "This deal with one of the biggest cell phone network operators in the world puts the music of our artists directly into the palms of more than 60 million consumers".


A new survey in the US suggests that the majority of young music fans would rather listen to their own MP3 collections that to a terrestrial radio station, Of the 2000 people polled, 85% said they would choose listening to music on their MP3 player over listening to the radio, while at home online music services were also more popular than radio stations.

Given the way most mainstream US radio stations has gone in recent years this is probably not all that surprising. David Van Dyke of Bridge Ratings, who did the survey, told Mediaweek: "While it appears that the next generation has responded negatively to traditional radio, the reasons are rooted in radio's abandonment of the 12-24 year old over the last 10 years. This age group appears to want radio to step up, change for the better and challenge them with a new way of presenting radio that is customised for their lifestyles and tastes."

Of course if young music fans continue to choose online music over radio as they grow older it will pose an interesting challenge for the record labels, whose promotional activities are primarily focused on radio stations. I wonder if the people who run the online music services will be as easy to bribe as US radio bosses? Only joking...


The BBC has announced that they have nabbed E4 Controller Julian Bellamy to head up youth channel BBC3. He replaces the digital channel's launch controller, Stuart Murphy, who, as previously reported, jumped ship to independent TV production house RDF earlier this year. Bellamy will join the corporation in the New Year, though it is unclear how he'll manage to fill the BBC 3 schedules without being able to fall back on that good old E4 contingency of "if in doubt, screen a Friends repeat".

Confirming the new appointment, BBC Director Of Television Jana Bennett told reporters: "I'm delighted Julian will be joining us in BBC Television. He has fantastic experience of building channels and brands in a multi-platform digital environment, a very strong creative background and terrific relations with talent and the production community."

Bellamy added: "The BBC is new territory for me and I admire what BBC Three has achieved with new talent and comedy. I'm really looking forward to working with Jana to take BBC Three to a new level for audiences and exploring new ideas that will ensure the channel continues to innovate, develop and create real excitement."


Well, it's been a while since we had any SonyBMG executive tension gossip, so here's another helping for you. As you'll remember, there's been much chatter over moves in the BMG camp to have former Sony exec Andy Lack kicked out of the top job at the merged label, most likely to be replaced by former BMG chief Rolf Schmidt-Holtz, who has had the hands-off role of Non-Executive Chairman post-merger.

The latest gossip comes from a piece in yesterday's Wall Street Journal. Describing the SonyBMG partnership as "a case study in the pitfalls of joint ventures", the Journal cites 'insiders' and says that Sony Corp boss Howard Stringer is now "reluctantly prepared" to kick his friend Lack out of the top job at the merged major in a bid to stop the Sony/BMG alliance from crumbling. The paper also says that rumoured proposals for Schmidt-Holtz to take a more proactive management role, but alongside Lack, are not likely to get the go ahead, with many on the BMG side of the board room now pushing for Lack to go completely. Whatever does now happen, the Journal reckons Stringer will have to act before Lack's current contract comes up for renewal at the end of March.

Others, though not the Journal, are saying that Stringer will probably try to solve this one by promoting Lack out of the record company, finding him a senior role elsewhere in the Sony Corp empire, and well away from their German business partners. Given that Lack's background is more in TV than music, that might involve a move to one of Sony's TV or movie businesses. If that gossip is true, how quickly Stringer will act will depend completely on how quickly he can find or create a suitable vacancy elsewhere in the Corp.


And talking of problems over at SonyBMG, there's still much media comment being generated over the whole 'rootkit' debacle. As you'll remember, this was the copy-protection software used on over 50 SonyBMG releases in the US which, it turned out, made users' computers more susceptible to virus attack.

Media attention in the last week has not so much centered on the internal and external PR war SonyBMG has had to fight since the flaws in its anti-piracy software were revealed, nor on the litigation it now faces for having used it in the first place. Rather commentators are wondering on what the whole incident means for the future of copy-protection on CDs in general.

Despite EMI telling the world it will proceed with its copy-protection software plans in 2006, despite the rootkit debacle, some insiders now say the industry will once again shoot itself in the foot if it chooses to do so. The consensus is that consumers will become increasingly reluctant to use CDs in their PCs if there is any sign of copy protection software being involved (I for one won't be able to review the new Back To Mine compilation, because to do so on my PC involves installing some anti-piracy technology).

Which means two things. Firstly, music fans may be tempted to go to illegitimate sources for their music, knowing that if they buy the CD they won't be able to play it on their computer. Secondly, the record labels will once again come across as sinister conglomerates out to screw the customer. Which isn't a persona you want when Apple boss and friend-of-the-common-man Steve Jobs is getting ready to stage a PR offensive to stop the music industry from forcing him to drop the one-low-price-fits-all iTunes model.


The new independent music mobile portal officially launched yesterday, aiming to offer independent and unsigned artists with a system through which they can offer mobile music downloads. Like Myspace, bands can create their own homepages and upload their own content to it. But with Bandwagon registered bands can also sell downloads from their page as either real tones, full track or video downloads. The site also has a load of central editorial and community functions, encouraging music fans to discover new artists through the site, and to recommend their favourites to others. More details at

As previously reported, Bandwagon are marking their official launch by staging a battle of the bands type competition in association with EMI publishing, the winners of which will get EMI studio time to cut a CD and slots at upcoming Bandwagon live events. More details on that too from


Well that was quick. Feeder have announced new dates for those gigs that they had to cancel over the weekend when Grant Nicholas got a throat infection. The rescheduled dates next March include one in Birmingham and two in London, plus a new Brighton date - the Feeder gig there did kick off on Friday but had to stop five songs in when Nicholas' throat first started to give up. New dates as follows - tickets for the cancelled shows will be valid.

21 Mar (previously 5 Dec): London, Carling Apollo Hammersmith
22 Mar (previously 6 Dec): London, Carling Apollo Hammersmith
24 Mar (previously 4 Dec): Brighton, Centre
25 Mar (previously 2 Dec): Birmingham NEC


ALBUM REVIEW: Jim Noir - Tower of Love (My Dad Recordings)
Jim Noir is a 23 year old multi-talented idiosyncratic singer songwriter from inner city Manchester. Most of the songs on this album are familiar to me from the charming series of three EPs he has released during the last year. His music sits equally comfortably within two camps, the West Coast influenced harmonies of the Thrills and Magic Numbers, and also the eccentric folk of Devendra Banhart and King Creosote. His first single 'Eanie Meany' was a sweet, gentle, lo-fi number about the childhood grievance of lost footballs over neighbours' fences. Second release 'My Patch' was a fresh and quirky song with lovely Beach Boys-style layered harmonies and an intriguing plucked guitar sound, while third single was the dreamy 'A Quiet Man'. The remainder of the album is an eclectic bunch of tracks including the oddball 'Computer Song' and 'The Only Way', whose echoing choir resembles a sonic cathedral of sound. There is even an intermission song, 'Tower of Love' which has a delightful Wurlitzer organ tune. All in all this is an unqualified success. JW
Release date: 5 Dec
Press contact: My Dad Records [all]


Stereophonics' Kelly Jones says his band are planning to release a live album next year, featuring performances recorded on their current tour. On his band's official website, Jones wrote: "Last week we mixed a load of live tracks for a potential record next year. We wanna bring out a live album with the similar angle to 'LSVO', very much in ya face and to the point and not overstay its welcome. So its not gonna be the whole gig at all, probably between 10 or 12 songs, no longer than sixty minutes. It's in no way a greatest hits, and the songs picked are picked from how good the energy is, no overdubs, keeping it a very raw live record, mainly to show how much the band were loving playing live this year."

On plans for a new studio album, Jones continued: "We have been demoing new material - I finished three completely - which I'm really into, and lots of other sketches too, so new material will come soon too."


Support acts have been announced for Fatboy Slim's Brixton Academy gigs later in the month. On Friday 16 Dec, guests are DJ Yoda and Scratch Perverts, with Giles Smith and Ashley Beedle booked in for the following night, Saturday 17 Dec. The sets kick off at 9pm on both nights, and there are still a few tickets left, apparently.


Richard Ashcroft has said that his new album 'Keys To The World', out 23 Jan, has a fair amount of political content, specifically speaking of one song which attacks religious conservatism as embodied by the US religious right and their poster boy, George W. Ashcroft says: "There's a track called 'Why Not Nothing' about how the world's turning so conservative and so religious at the same time."

He continues: "I think it's up to the songwriters to give another side to the coin and my music does that. It gives another side, it's not an atheist side but it's someone saying it that doesn't necessarily believe in all that."

And if you'd like to see Mr Ashcroft on tour (I know I would) here are some live dates for you:
20 Jan: Glasgow ABC
21 Jan: Gateshead Sage
22 Jan: Preston Guildhall
24 Jan: London Electric Ballroom


Time Out has compiled its list of Movers & Shakers 2005, the 100 people it reckons are most influential in the capital. At the top of the survey is London's lovable Mayor Ken Livingstone who is, I guess, pretty influential. (It's a shame he uses that influence to axe those wonderful Routemaster buses so he can replace them with those very rubbish and very expensive bendy buses, even though he said he wouldn't, but I suppose that's politicians for you. But I know who I won't be voting for at the next mayoral election).

Other political types in the top ten include Gordon Brown and Tony Blair (interestingly the former is more influential than the latter), while transport chief Tim O'Toole and police boss Ian Blair also appear. Businessmen John Murphy (chief exec of Murphy's Ltd), Jane Shepherdson (Brand Director of Topshop) and Roman Abramovich (owner of Chelsea Football Club) are also in there, as is the Queen and her good friend Abu Hamza Al-Masri. Not quite sure on what grounds half of those are considered 'influential', but presumably Time Out will explain in this week's issue.

Music wise, the highest rater is Jerry Smith, the man who auditions the buskers who play on the tube - which is pretty clever when you think about it. Other music names in the top 100 are predictable - Bob Geldof (39), Madonna (74) and Vince Power (83). Dan Stacey is in there at 27, presumably because of his status as 'Godfather of grime', while Lady Sovereign is at 52, perhaps because of her mission to save the hoodie. Quite why Richard Archer of Hard-Fi is considered the fiftieth most influential person in London I really don't know - as much as we love Hard-Fi. And we do love Hard-Fi.

Press info on the poll from Idea Generation on 020 7428 4949 or


Robbie Williams' calendar is this year's most popular. Actually, next year's. That's confusing. It's actually next year's most popular. But the sales figures are going to be this years, aren't they? Oh my poor tiny brain.

Anyway, the pop singer has sold the most 2006 calendars thus far, with Little Britain in second place. Then comes the football, with Manchester United and Arsenal tying for third place. How can that be though? Are you telling me that they've both sold exactly the same amount? Exactly?

Anyway, others in the list top ten list include last year's number one, Kylie Minogue, The Simpsons, McFly (why in the name of all that is holy aren't they number one?), Liverpool FC and the girls from Hollyoaks.


Talking of Robbie - this just in. Mr Williams has just been awarded substantial libel damages from The People newspaper, and Star and Hot Stars magazines, over stories they published in 2004 claiming the singer had "secret homosexual encounters". The lawyer representing the various titles said her clients now accepted those claims were not true.


The Sun says Pete Doherty and Liam Gallagher have had a bit of a spat at the home of their babymother-in-common Lisa Moorish. Gallagher was at the house for a pre-arranged visit with his seven year old daughter Molly, when Doherty turned up, presumably to see his two year old son Estile. The Babyshamble was, according to the report, very much the worse for wear, when Gallagher confronted him and ejected him out onto the street.

A rentasource told the tabloid: "Lisa has allowed Pete to see Estile recently. It seemed he was sorting himself out and she felt that he was ready to build bridges. But she would expect him to organise his visits on advance, although it's difficult with someone like Pete. It didn't help that he seemed a bit worse for wear and was rambling and stumbling all over the place. Lisa just lost her temper and Liam was really miffed. He turfed Pete out into the street and told him he wasn't going anywhere near either of the kids until he sorted himself out."


Well, this may put an end to gossip-blog speculation over recent photos of Black Eyes Peas' Fergie at a gig looking as though she might have wet herself, as she's not shy of admitting that it's happened in the past. The singer has apparently revealed that she's pissed herself on stage before, and wasted champagne covering her tracks. On one of her first shows in Australia, she is reported to have explained: "I had a few drinks before the show, but I didn't think to go to the restroom before we went onstage. We were jumping around - it was all very rock 'n' roll - and my bladder just started... you know. Somebody brought out these champagne bottles because it was the New Year, and I basically opened one up and squirted it all over myself, so nobody would notice. It was a very memorable Pea experience."


Well, the speculation about the health of the Spears-Federline union has been mounting for some time, so I guess it's about time we reported on it. Britney, it's alleged, kicked Federline out of their home in Malibu last week and had his beloved Ferrari sent back to the dealership. The Sun is now saying that Federline followed his meal-ticket, sorry, wife, to Las Vegas, where she is in town for this year's Billboard Awards, to attempt a reconciliation. He apparently checked into the same hotel as his estranged partner, and began placing call after call to her suite, upsetting her so much, it's said, that she has cancelled her appearance at the awards event.

The Sun's source said: "He loves his car almost as much as he loves Britney. He was devastated when he heard she'd sent it back to the dealer. He's been calling all the time asking for forgiveness, saying he wants to be together as a family. He angered Britney by asking for his car but backed off when she got mad and went out with pals. Although Britney has been partying with pals, deep down she's devastated by the split. She's so young and already has one failed marriage, not to mention the baby with Kevin. That's why she may take him back."

The gossips are saying that it's Kevin's partying that's the problem, his lack of responsibility, and the fact that he brought marijuana into the house. Of course it may be more due to the fact that Federline has allegedly spent around a million dollars of his wife's fortune on attempting to start his own musical career, which will undoubtedly flounder if his songs are as rubbish as people are saying they are. According to Femalefirst a source has said: "Britney's had it with Kevin's excessive spending. She is not impressed by the music but doesn't know how to break it to him."


Legal notice for Elton John's civil partnership to David Furnish has been displayed at Maidenhead town hall. The ceremony is to take place on 21 Dec at Windsor's Guildhall, where Prince Charles married Camilla earlier in the year. On the venue, Windsor and Maidenhead council leader Mary Rose Gliksten said: "Sir Elton and Mr Furnish are making a solemn and formal commitment to each other and our Guildhall offers them both dignity and privacy. We wish them both much happiness for their important day."

She added that they were expecting crowds of people to turn up, and that the authorities would work with Thames Valley Police to manage that situation. It may be a little irritating for the happy couple, who, as previously reported, are apparently anxious to keep the ceremony very low key.


Billy Joel has had a dig at Michael Jackson, criticising charity song 'We Are The World', written by Jackson and performed by a variety of US stars, including Joel, back in 1985. The singer said: "I remember most of us who were there didn't like the song, but nobody would say so. I think Cyndi Lauper leaned over to me and said, 'It sounds like a Pepsi commercial.' And I didn't disagree."

Hmm. I don't disagree either. Go Cyndi.


Madonna has revealed that she used to love shooting birds just for the thrill of it, which is pretty nasty, if you ask me. But let's remember that I would say that, being a vegetarian and all. Anyway, Madonna says that she's over it now, and I, for one, am glad to hear it. She told Tatler: "I was mad for shooting a couple of years ago. I loved my bespoke outfits and everything. Then a bird dropped in front of me that I'd shot. It wasn't dead. It was really suffering. Blood was gushing out of its mouth. I haven't shot since. I realised that I had a kind of bloodlust and was manically shooting as many birds as possible."

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