CMU Daily - on the inside Thursday 16th March
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Warners Oz relaunch Mushroom Records
- Jacko starts to pay his staff
- Black Crowes live, instantly
- UK mainstream top 10 set to feature three tenors
- Time Warner boss didn't dis WMG, ok?
- Government safeguard licence fee in BBC white paper
- Albums review: The Trip Curated By Jarvis Cocker And Steve Mackey and The Trip Navigated By Joey Negro
- Virgin Radio sign up Preston
- Stern bashes CBS on CBS
- eMusic sign up 40 new labels
- Playstation 3 launch delayed
- Columbia launch new website
- Spank Rock champion the air-cock-thrust
- Single review: Guillemots - We're Here
- More names added to Download
- Hard-Fi set for T In The Park
- IOW sells out
- More acts added to Wireless
- Tunstall tour dates
- Dylan plays Cardiff
- Lil Kim reality show scores ratings record
- Manson to go solo
- Love gets back into studio
- Kanye West movie in the pipeline
- Carey says Snoop Dogg is biggest diva


As you all surely know, CMU has a very close affinity with the college music and media community, mainly through its sister creative network, the College Media Network. The CMN (never to be confused with the CMU) exists to offer media students, or any student involved in the mad world of college radio, college press or union entertainments and communications, with free resources and training/showcasing opportunities. In particular we run a number of programmes offering said students the opportunity to hone their media skills, to make contacts in the entertainment and media businesses, and to showcase their work. I'm mentioning this now, because we have just announced details of three of these programmes - offering students the chance to review shows at this year's Brighton Festival and Edinburgh Festival, or, for those based in the capital, the chance to get involved in a new website that will be covering all that is exciting in film, theatre, comedy and music in London. Oh yes, and we are recruiting a few more people to join CMU's own team of student correspondents (especially in Manchester, Newcastle, Sheffield, Leeds, Cardiff, Belfast and Bristol). There are full details on all these things online at If you're not a student, but you'd like to get involved in one of our CMN projects, or you'd like us to create a student programme for your company, or you'd like to promote your own creative or media projects via the CMN website, then get in touch - contact [email protected]



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Press info:



MySpace Of The Day: The Crimea
The Crimea's 'debut' album (I say 'debut' because the band are essentially a reincarnation of late nineties buzz band The Crocketts) 'Tragedy Rocks' has spent a great deal of time in my CD player since late last year, and I'm finding it hard to get tired of this clever, cruelly witty and sometimes whimsical set of tracks - a frequently upbeat indie-rock sort of sound, courtesy of the main man, singer and songwriter Davey McManus. Their MySpace is worth a visit just to listen to a couple of those tracks streaming and get a feel for the music before making sure you get a copy of the whole album, but you can also keep up with what's happening on their current tour because they're blogging it.

More on our MySpace Of The Day plus 3 Student Music Awards finalists The Know, Sophia Humphreys and Lola Edun answer the Same Six Questions right now at


Warner Music Australia has announced it is relaunching Mushroom Records as an imprint to release music from new Australian and New Zealand signings.

As previously reported, Warner acquired Mushroom from Rupert Murdoch's News Corp last year when its then MD Michael Parisi joined the major record company as A&R President. The new Mushroom Records will initially release music by some of the artists acquired in that takeover - including Eskimo Joe, hip hop acts Scribe and Butterfingers, and singer Chloe Lattanzi, the daughter of Olivia Newton-John. The imprint is also expected to start signing new talent.

The revamped Mushroom Records is the third incarnation of the legendary Australian independent. Originally founded by Michael Gudinski in the early seventies, it became known as Festival Mushroom Records in 1998 after Murdoch took complete ownership and merged it with his other label Festival Records.

It was unclear what would happen to the label after Warner acquired it last year. When Warner took ownership of the London spin off of Mushroom the label name was essentially dropped, with its roster swallowed by its East West division (which has subsequently been rebranded Atlantic Records, of course). But Parisi this week confirmed the plans to relaunch the Mushroom name in Australia, telling Billboard: "Mushroom has a strong respected brand name internationally".

Of course the use of the Mushroom brand by Warner, and previously News Corp, is slightly confusing given that original founder Gudinski's current group of music companies (which is nothing to do with Warner or News Corp) still goes under the parent name of the Mushroom Music Group.


California's Department Of Industrial Relations yesterday confirmed that Michael Jackson's people had begun processing $300,000 dollars in back wages owed to 69 employees at the singer's Neverland ranch. As previously reported, the authorities were threatening to sue Jacko over the unpaid wage bill, though they gave him an extra 24 hours to get things sorted after their original deadline passed on Tuesday.

A spokesman for the Department said yesterday: "As directed in a letter on March 7 demanding payment of wages, arrangements have been made to ensure that all employees are paid wages owed them, There is no need to take legal action in this matter at this time as our main concern that all employees receive wages owed to them is being addressed".

The Department also said that they understood that Jackson's people were in the process of renewing their insurance policy that protects Neverland employees. As previously reported, the authorities had told the ranch's staff to not report for work after it was revealed that insurance policy had lapsed.

In addition to covering the costs of the back pay and the insurance policy, Jacko will also be fined by the authorities for his failings as an employer. The fine for failing to pay his staff is likely to be $69,000, a grand for each affected employee. The fine for failing to ensure employees were insured while on site is still to be decided.

Jackson, of course, has not resided at Neverland since the end of last year's child abuse trial. He has been staying mainly in Bahrain since that time, although rumour had it he was currently residing in the UK with a view to setting up home somewhere in the home counties, although his US spokesman has subsequently denied all that.


Live Nation have confirmed that The Black Crowes will be the next band to take part in the old Instant Live thingy over here in the UK. Basically anyone going to the band's gigs at the Shepherd's Bush Empire on 18, 19 or 20 Mar will be able to buy a live recording of what they have just seen as they leave the venue. Fans without tickets for the London gigs will also be able to buy the live recordings via Instant Live's European website -


Well, there may have been three tenors in the UK album top ten before, but never each with their own album. Yep, chart history could be made this weekend because three operatic blokes are likely to each have an album in the top ten of the mainstream music charts.

Current sales figures suggest that the new album from Italian newcomer Vittorio Grigolo - a 29 year old working tenor dubbed "Il Pavarottino" by the Italian press - should appear in the album top ten on Sunday.

The new album from Russell Watson, who is likely to enjoy extra popularity after appearing on that Just The Two Of Us thing, is also likely to chart highly, while the latest album from Andrea Bocelli, already at number four in the charts, is expected to stay top ten.

Commenting on the current popularity of the tenors, HMV's chart trivia guy Gennaro Castaldo told CMU: "Classical music is always popular, but sometimes you need a new generation of artists to make that all-important connection with the wider record-buying public. The first time we really saw the phenomenon of classical music crossing over into the mainstream in this way was through the massive popularity of the Three Tenors in the early 1990's, but now the likes of Andrea, Vittorio and Russell are achieving a similar effect with a new and younger audience."


Time Warner has released a statement in support of Warner Music, after a throw away remark from the company's chief executive in an interview with New Yorker magazine seemed to dis the music company.

Time Warner flogged its record company to Edgar Bronfman Jnr and friends back in 2004, of course, though I'm pretty sure they still have a share in it. When Warner Music Group was brought up in the interview, Time Warner CEO Dick Parsons said: "They're living off their catalogue", possibly a reference to other insider criticism that Bronfman Jnr and his top man Lyor Cohen have failed to deliver any truly successful new talent since taking over the major. As you'll remember, gossipers concluded that new signing James Blunt has become an international hit for Warner despite rather than because of the company's leadership - early attempts to sign him in the US apparently being hindered by the Bronfman/Cohen restructure, and subsequent success came courtesy of the major's London office and Warner International.

Anyway, through a disclaimer quoted in the New York Post, Time Warner would like to stress quite strongly that: "Dick's comments in the New Yorker ... were not intended to criticise the Warner Music Group. Dick thinks Edgar and his team have done a great job in rebuilding and reviving the company. They've undertaken several new initiatives in the digital music space and have adopted an innovative approach to artist development and discovery - all with impressive results."


The licence fee is the "least worst" way to fund the BBC - or at least that is the conclusion of the government, which has published its White Paper proposals for the future of the Beeb, proposals which should form the basis of the Corporation's new charter, which is up for renewal this year. That conclusion means the licence fee will remain until at least 2016 - though officials said that that didn't mean the Beeb could get complacent, adding that they would expect more transparency as to how licence fee funds are spent, and that they were still considering making some of the money generated available to other broadcasters with public service aims, such as Channel 4.

Elsewhere in the White Paper the government added six more aims to the Corporation's traditional remit to "inform, educate and entertain" - to sustain citizenship and civil society (whatever that means), to promote education, to stimulate creativity, to reflect the identity of the UK's nations, regions and communities, to bring the world to the UK and the UK to the world, and to help build digital Britain. The Paper also set out a new system for regulation for the BBC based around a 'trust' rather than the existing board of 'governors'. The governors system came under particular criticism during that whole Hutton Enquiry thing, when questions were asked as to whether one group of people could fulfil the dual task of both championing and judging the Corporation. The new trust will aim, perhaps idealistically, to be the champion not of the Corporation itself, but of the licence fee payers' interests.

BBC bosses warmly welcomed the White Paper, suggesting it pretty much says what they wanted it to say. Commercial broadcasting chiefs were generally positive but cautious of the proposals. ITV top man Charles Allen welcomed the trust idea in particular, but added: "The BBC's funding must be proportionate to its needs and should not be able to stifle competition and innovation". Paul Brown of the Commercial Radio Companies Association, meanwhile, raised doubts as to how effective the trust could be, saying: "I think the chairman of the Trust, Michael Grade, has got his work cut out to make sure that it is trustworthy and is seen to be impartial."


ALBUM REVIEW: The Trip curated by Jarvis Cocker and Steve Mackey and The Trip navigated by Joey Negro (Family Recordings)
I don't normally get to write a review of a compilation album, and that's because my sneaky fellow editor, dubbing himself 'head of compilations', usually makes off with most of them the minute they arrive in the post. Lucky for me that I stumbled on these before he did, because I can safely say that in doing so, I discovered one of the greatest mix tapes ever made. For my purposes, at any rate. These two double CD collections are of course just the latest in the series of The Trip compilations, a series that features previous albums put together by such artists as St Etienne, Dirty Vegas and Tom Middleton. These latest installments, both out on the same day, are very different in character. Pulp boys Cocker and Mackey have put together an eclectic mix that starts with Carl Orff's 'Gassenhauer', easily juxtaposes rock, pop, country, electronica and then some from the likes of OMD, The Beach Boys, Dory Previn and Gene Pitney, before signing off with the ultimate sign-off song, and one of my favourite bedtime/Radio 4 traditions, Ronald Binge's 'Sailing By.' It's a really nice collection, despite the presence of occasionally more obscure tracks that I'm tempted to skip. And for me, it's Joey Negro who wins hands down, although clearly this is not a competition. As I recently said to my fellow editor, possibly on the CMU Radio Show a couple of weeks ago, it's almost as though the legendary producer had cracked open my head and picked out exactly what I would want from a compilation album sometime in the late winter/early spring of the year 2006. This collection warms my soul like a hot bath on a cold day. In fact, leaving the house after listening to it, I feel like one of those ReadyBrek kids from the old adverts with a glow emanating from my body as I proceed towards the bus stop. CD1 sees classic TV and film themes such as the music from The Avengers with classy poppy tunes such as Double's sublime 'Captain Of Her Heart' and Propaganda's 'Duel', whilst CD2 kicks off by embracing a funky, soulful vibe with Kool And The Gang and Erykah Badu. Hell, there's even some big band in there courtesy of Glen Miller's 'Moonlight Serenade'. Like I said, it's taken the chill off the last few weeks for me; I pretty much guarantee, however, that I'll still be playing both Trip albums to death come summer. CM.
Release date: 13 Mar
Press contact: Darling [all]


Ordinary Boy Samuel Preston has been signed up to host shows on Virgin Radio. Presumably hoping to cash in on the singer's post-Celeb BB popularity, the station has hired Preston to present four Sunday afternoon shows, kicking off this weekend.

Commenting on the booking, Preston told reporters: "Being in a band means music is a massive part of my life - the chance to be a DJ on a station like Virgin Radio is one in a million. I can't wait."

Virgin Programme Director Paul Jackson added: "Preston has established himself as a great media personality to come out of a mainstream reality TV show, and the natural next step in our relationship was to offer him his very own show here on Virgin Radio".

Elsewhere in Virgin Radio news, the station has confirmed that their revenues rose last year, the first time they've gone up since Scottish Media Group acquired the radio company back in 2000. Revenues were up 11% to £22.4 million in 2005. Station bosses, who were keen to point out how their revenues are up while the wider radio industry had seen revenues fall, say that increased sponsorship, promotion and online revenues should also ensure another revenue rise in the first four months of 2006 too. Well done them.


Howard Stern got to hit out a little more at media major CBS this week when he appeared on, erm, CBS.

As previously reported, CBS Radio (the new name for Infinity Radio) is suing Stern over all the plugging he did for his new employer, satellite broadcaster Sirius, while still presenting for Infinity. Sirius gave Stern and his people extra equity because of the number of subscribers who signed up to the satellite network last year - a boost arguably aided by Stern's constant plugging. CBS say that that means Stern had a personal financial interest in plugging Sirius on air, which, they say, makes the whole situation much more serious. That is to say, litigation serious.

However, before CBS Radio launched their lawsuit against Stern, CBS TV had already booked him for their Late Show With David Letterman programme, giving Stern a perfect opportunity to dis the media group and, in particular, its top man Les Moonves.

Despite getting the on air bashing, CBS have tried to spin the fact they let Stern on at all as a sign that they are the 'better people' in this public feud. In a statement the broadcaster said: "We did not stand in the way of Howard appearing on our own airwaves tonight. We believe his appearance was his desperate attempt to distract attention from the facts of the case. Howard Stern has done something wrong and we intend to demonstrate this wrongful conduct in court".


eMusic, the world's largest independent digital music platform, and the biggest seller of music in file formats without digital rights management, has announced that it has entered into new deals with 40 independent labels. That announcement means eMusic now sells tracks on behalf of over 400 indie record companies. The company also announced that it now has over 150,000 subscribers, and that they sold over 9 million downloads in January and February this year, making them second to iTunes in terms of pay-per-track sales.

The company's President, David Packman, told reporters: "eMusic's growth rate continues to accelerate, and independent labels choose to work with us because they understand that we effectively target and market to their audience. Our rapidly growing subscriber base and focus on merchandising independent artists allows us unusual leverage to help independent labels increase their sales while helping independent artists to build their audience. Over the past 24 months, eMusic has sold more than 54 million tracks. Tracks purchased at eMusic play on any device, including the iPod, and when customers aren't restricted in what they can do with their music, they buy more of it."

New labels working with eMusic include Cherry Red, Arhoolike Records, Definitive Jux, Stones Throw, Rhymesayers and Ninja Tune.


Not completely a music story - though presumably it's going to have lots of music functionality - so it is, sort of. Sony have confirmed speculation that the launch of the PlayStation 3 is being delayed until at least November because of problems with the console's Blu-ray DVD drive. The original plan had been for a launch in Japan in the Spring, rolling out in the US and Europe over the rest of the year. But Sony Computer Entertainment president Ken Kutaragi has told an analysts' conference: "When we initially announced our plans to launch this Spring, we had expected the standardisation work on all of the technologies to be completed by last August, but there were improvements that were decided on since then. I would like to apologise for revising the release date, [but] standardisation talks on new Blu-ray technology and high-definition multimedia interfacing - the key features of the next generation console - have taken more time than we had originally thought". The delay is good news for Microsoft and Nintendo, who will now have more time to flog their Xbox 360 and Revolution consoles before the next generation of the market leading PlayStation reaches stores.


So if you're looking for something to kill time with today, why not go and check out the new website for recently re-created SonyBMG division Columbia? It's rapidly appearing here:


Or, why not go and see friends and fans of Ninja Tune/Big Dada signed Spank Rock doing a little air-cock-thrusting - a move apparently championed by the dancey hip hoppers at their live shows. If you're really keen to can film your own air-cock-thrust and upload it to the site. More at


SINGLE REVIEW: Guillemots -We're Here (Universal/Polydor)
This is a lovely, joyous and evocative confection from the multi instrumental, multi-national London based band Guillemots. Singer songwriter Fyfe Dangerfield has created a marvellous wide screen epic sound here, utilising a 30 piece orchestra. The four piece have been widely tipped as artists to watch including coming 5th in the BBC's Sound Of 2006 poll. The band have a diverse range of influences and come from a variety of backgrounds; their album due in May should make for an interesting listen. JW
Release date: 27 Mar
Press contact: Polydor IH [CP, RP, NP] Anglo [CR, RR, NR]


More names have been added to the line up for this year's Download Festival with, Funeral For A Friend, Alice In Chains, Coheed & Cambria and The All-American Rejects included in the latest batch of confirmations. They join previously announced headliners Guns n Roses, Metallica and Tool as well as other big name acts such as The Prodigy, Korn and Trivium for the event, which, as previously reported, takes place at Donington Park from 9 - 11 Jun.


Lord, T In The Park's gonna be good. Not only have Hard-Fi now been confirmed for the event, but The Proclaimers are going to be there too. The event, which is, of course, sold out, takes place at Balado near Kinross from 8 - 9 Jul.

On his band's festival appearance Richard Archer said: "Some of the best gigs we've ever played have been in Scotland. We've got some great memories from our first ever gig at King Tut's, December's sold out Barrowlands show and of course our Hogmanay show in Edinburgh. So we're really looking forward to playing up there at T in the Park for the first time. The line up for the weekend looks great!"

The only slightly spooky Proclaimer twins Craig and Charlie Reid, meanwhile, currently in the studio working on new material, said: "We are delighted to be playing T In The Park for the third time and we are sure the crowd will be exceptional, as it always is."


The Isle of Wight festival has sold out. The final tickets for the event, which takes place in Newport from 9 - 11 Jun, were sold on Tuesday. The lineup thus far is as follows:

9 Jun:
The Prodigy, Placebo, Goldfrapp, The Rakes

10 Jun:
Foo Fighters, Primal Scream, Editors, Dirty Pretty Things, The Kooks, The Upper Room, 747s

11 Jun:
Coldplay, Richard Ashcroft, Lou Reed, Maximo Park, Kubb


Pharell Williams, The B52s, Dirty Pretty Things, Ray Lamontagne and The Boy Least Likely To are the latest acts to be added to this year's Wireless Festival, which takes place, of course in Hyde Park and at Harewood House in Leeds. Now is probably a good time for a recap, so here's the line-up as currently stands...

June 21 (Hyde Park)
The Strokes, Belle & Sebastian, Super Furry Animals, Dirty Pretty Things

June 22 (Hyde Park)
David Gray, KT Tunstall, Violent Femmes, The B-52's, Fun Lovin' Criminals, Ray Lamontagne

June 23 (Hyde Park)
Massive Attack, The Flaming Lips, Pharrell Williams, Damien Marley, DJ Shadow, Terry Callier

June 24 (Hyde Park)
James Blunt, Zero 7, Eels, Beth Orton, Nile Rodgers & Chic, The Boy Least Likely To

June 24 (Harewood House)
Massive Attack, Goldfrapp, Pharrell Williams, DJ Shadow, Terry Callier

June 25 (Hyde Park)
Depeche Mode, Goldfrapp, Bauhaus, Thomas Dolby

June 25 (Harewood House)
The Who, The Flaming Lips, The Zutons, Eels, Super Furry Animals


KT Tunstall has announced a series of live dates. They are as follows:

30 May: Norwich Waterfront
31 May: Brighton Concorde
17 Jun: Isle of Skye Festival
19 Jun: Wolverhampton Civic Hall
20 Jun: Sheffield City Hall
21 Jun: Manchester Apollo
22 Jun: Wireless Festival, Hyde Park


Bob Dylan has confirmed a UK date on his upcoming European tour appearing at Cardiff International Arena on 27 Jun. He will also appear at two Irish gigs, at Nowlan Park, Kilkenny, on 24 Jun and at Cork Showgrounds on 25 Jun.


Lil Kim's reality show 'Lil Kim: Countdown To Lockdown', made records when it premiered on US network BET last week, becoming the most-watched series debut in the channel's twenty-five year history. According to the network, 1.9 million viewers watched the programme, which follows the Brooklyn rapper during her last fourteen days of freedom before she went to prison back in September following her previously reported conviction for perjury.

BET president Reginald Hudlin says: "When we showed the first episode of Lil' Kim to test audiences, we got the highest scores in the history of the company. So when it became the biggest series debut in the history of the network, I wasn't surprised. As powerful as the first episode is, the series finale is even better."


Garbage frontlady Shirley Manson has started work on a solo debut album. The singer has been working with film score composer David Arnold, who collaborated with Garbage on 1999 Bond theme 'The World Is Not Enough' and told Billboard: "I just went to London last week and we wrote a song together. It was really quick and fast and it was really good fun."

Manson added that writing with other people is "scary and really exciting and super-freaky. It feels really weird to talk about it!", and added that she has no fixed plan as to when the album will be released. "I've got no timetable. I'm sort of sick of timetables, to be honest. I just want to live my life a little freely and not adhere to any schedule - just make music and have fun."

She insisted, however, that her solo work was not indicative of a Garbage split, commenting on the confused reaction last year to Manson's announcement that the band were planning a hiatus. "We're still together, absolutely. We all feel like we want to go off and do a variety of things. [Drummer] Butch [Vig] is going back into production and some other guys are working on film soundtracks. Being the chaotic bunch we are, we should have put a press release together but we didn't. We were quite taken aback by how big a deal was made of it. But we love each other and we still want to work together. We're just taking a break. We've had a crazy decade."


Courtney Love has told that all that stuff she reportedly said about Steve Coogan is rubbish, but more importantly, has said that she's all ready to start work on that previously reported second solo album this month with producer Linda Perry.

On the content for the long player Love said: "I don't generally talk about what the songs are about, but I will say that in the gutters of this earth you can always find love. In the darkest alley and the lowest moment there is always that thing that glitters just a little bit, no matter how twisted or deadly or violent. It's there, magical and transformative. I've written a lot about that."

On Coogan, she added: "We're friends and he's funny as fuck and very cool. But he's not my boyfriend and if he was I sure as hell would never talk about it. My private life is my private life. I'll say one thing. I'm fucking sick of fucking tabloids, I don't talk to them and I don't like them."

She is, however, very fond of comedians, apparently. Love continued: "Ever since I worked with Jim Carrey [on Andy Kaufman movie 'Man On The Moon'] I've related really well to comedians. I think our jobs are really similar and I'm drawn to people as friends who aren't afraid to go to the edge. A lot of times rockers are trying to be cool so much they forget that the fundamental job is to be as vulnerable as possible. Really good comedians are sometimes more rock 'n' roll than rock 'n' rollers."


Kanye West is to act as executive producer on a new film inspired by his music. The project will not, however, feature music videos but a portrait of America as West sees it drawn through ten different short stories, written by six different writers, and linked by a central narrative. Producer Richard Brown says: "This project will synthesise Kanye's vision with a fantastic group of filmmakers and create what will be a one-of-a-kind film experience."


Mariah Carey says that Snoop Dogg is a much more demanding diva than she is. On the subject of a recent trip to France to shoot a new video, Mariah told MTV: "If you guys think I'm a diva, Snoop is like next-level hip-hop king. So his requirements to get to Paris are like, beyond platinum edition".

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