CMU Daily - on the inside Wednesday 30th August
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Universal sign up to free downloads service
- Foxy Brown pleads, well, guilty and not guilty
- Linkin Park sign up to iTunes - at last
- Babyshambles in talks with Parlophone
- Virgin Radio owner knocks back merger deal
- Ticketmaster cancel Streisand tickets after fraud revealed
- Album Review: The Dears - Gang Of Losers
- Second John Peel Day planned
- Jarvis solo gig
- Scissor Sisters tour
- Lemonheads tour
- Eminem designs Nike trainers for charity
- Kaiser suggests rehab supergroup


Now, this be interesting. The lovely old Universal Music Group has signed up to a new advertising funded digital music platform which will offer free access to music downloads. The new platform, being developed by a New York based company called Spiralfrog, should launch in the US and Canada in December.

The company's CEO, Robin Kent, is a former head of ad agency Universal McCann, and he reckons young music fans will accept advertising in return for free music. He told reporters: "Offering young consumers an easy-to-use alternative to pirated music sites will be compelling".

While many in the industry accept that Kent's model may do more to move young web users from illegal P2P services to legit downloading than current subscription or pay-per-track platforms like Napster and iTunes, concerns remain as to exactly how artists will be paid. If they get a share of ad sales rather than a per download fee, the important question is what kind of ad revenues will be available to share?

Nevertheless, Universal Music's involvement in the new venture will give Spiralfrog a considerable boost.


So, Foxy Brown has pleaded guilty to those assault charges that following an altercation with two nail salon workers back in 2004. Except, she hasn't. Except she has. Confused?

Well, having previously turned down a plea bargain over the case, demanding the assault charges be reduced to the lesser count of disorderly conduct, Brown yesterday declared she was guilty of the original charges and that she would accept a new plea bargain, which reportedly means she will be handed three years probation and be required to attend anger management classes. Which is all well and good, except four minutes later the rapper said she wanted to revoke her plea, arguing she had been rushed into making a decision. But the judge refused the request, and said she would have to make a written motion ahead of a formal sentencing hearing on 23 Oct.

As previously reported, this whole thing relates to an incident in August 2004 when she allegedly assaulted two nail salon workers in a dispute over a twenty dollar manicure.


If it's good enough for Metallica, surely it's good enough for Linkin Park? Well, having held out so far, Linkin Park have announced they are finally making their music available via iTunes. As of yesterday three albums from the band will be available on the Apple service, each with bonus tracks, including an exclusive iTunes cut. The download platform will also sell video content from the group's 'Live In Texas' and 'Collision Course' DVDs.

Confirming the decision to sell their music via iTunes, the band's Mike Shinoda told reporters: "We were really excited when iTunes told us that we were one of their most requested acts. We will never ignore our fans and the timing seemed right to make our music available, with some special additions."

The list of hold-outs on iTunes gets ever smaller - though Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Radiohead and Garth Brooks are all still to sign up to the service.


Babyshambles have signed up to a £1 million record deal with Parlophone, according to the Daily Mirror, which should buy a lot of smack and crack. Then gain, Babyshambles have not signed up to a £1 million record deal with Parlophone according to Parlophone, which won't buy much smack or crack at all.

However, the EMI division has confirmed they are in negotiations with Pete Doherty et al regarding a new record deal - Babyshambles having been sans label since parting company with Rough Trade a couple of months back.

On the (potential but in the Mirror's eyes actual) Parlophone deal, a friend of Pete told the tabloid: "He's over the moon because The Beatles were with Parlophone. That means a lot to him. The band can't wait to get their new music on the shelves. It's a very exciting time because a lot of record labels were after them, but in the end they got the best deal money-wise and album-wise with Parlophone."


Virgin Radio owners SMG have rejected a revised merger approach from UTV, even though it would have given SMG's shareholders a 52% stake in the combined company. Talk of the Scotland and Northern Ireland based media companies merging has been around for a while - it would bring together the ITV franchises in Ulster and Scotland, as well as bringing together two national radio stations - Virgin and Talk Sport. However, SMG have been less keen on the proposals since the start, claiming UTV are over rating their own value compared to that of SMG. Nevertheless, SMG says it is willing to have further talks with UTV, though it seems that UTV aren't 100% willing to do that.


Promoters of an upcoming Barbra Streisand US tour are warning fans that they have invalidated over 1000 tickets which, it transpired, had been bought with stolen credit card information. It is likely that the fraudulently acquired tickets have been sold on to third parties via unofficial ticket websites, so organisers fear the scam may leave hundreds of genuine fans disappointed.

With the support of the tour's promoter, Michael Cohl, and Streisand's manager, Martin Erlichman, the President of Ticketmaster, Sean Moriarty, whose company sold the fraudulently acquired tickets, told reporters: "With the Streisand tour the unusually high number of incidents of fraud has prompted us to issue this specific warning".

A list of all the cancelled tickets has been posted on Ticketmaster's website and the company are urging ticket holders who bought tickets from third party agencies to check that list against their own tickets.


ALBUM REVIEW: The Dears - Gang Of Losers (Bella Union)
If you hark to the halcyon days when Britpop comprised arty, layered, evocative music (ie before the genre got hijacked by Oasis, and then Tony Blair) then The Dears will bring, er, tears to your eyes and a joy to your heart. There's traces of Suede and The Smiths here, but 'Gang Of Losers' is primarily like listening to the best album Blur never made; in other words, taking the best of their music made before and after their contrived laddish/cartoon/Chas and Dave etc phase, and at the same time one removed of all the scratchiness and dissonance which that loser Coxon peppered their stuff with. Usually the Britpop template dictated a bold debut album, followed by a bigger second album, where orchestras and larger production came in to signify more money (and drugs) and ambition. The Dears have kind of done things in reverse though: the strings and opulence of their excellent debut album have essentially disappeared, replaced by a more toned down affair, only embellished by the odd bit of glock or some electronic noises. Of course, it's all still an absolute triumph; an end of the pier drama full of simply wonderful song-writing, cutting lyrics and the impassioned vocals of Murray Lightburn (who still sounds unfathomably like Damon Albarn), excelling in the role of frustrated outsider and lovelorn romantic. MS
Release date: 28 Aug
Press contact: Bella Union IH


BBC Radio 1 has announced it will hold a second John Peel Day on 12 Oct to mark the anniversary of the late great DJ's final show on the music station.

As last year, bands, artists and DJs all over the world will be encouraged to stage gigs and club nights that honour Peel and, where possible, his passion for new and alternative music.

Confirming her support for the second John Peel Day, Peel's widow Sheila Ravenscroft told reporters: "I hope many bands and venues will want to celebrate John's anniversary. Everyone should have a fantastic night."

Last year more than 500 events took place as part of the celebrations. Radio 1, for their part, will repeat a number of classic 'Peel Sessions', as well as reporting on John Peel Day events.


Jarvis Cocker will play what I think is his first ever solo gig at KoKo in London on 15 Nov - tickets are on sale now. The live show will follow the release of solo single 'Running The World', which is already available on iTunes.


Scissor Sisters. Tour. Dates follow. Tickets. On Sale. 1 Sep.

6 Nov: Manchester, MEN Arena
8 Nov: Belfast, Odyssey Arena
9 Nov: Dublin, The Point
11 Nov: The Brighton Centre
12 Nov: Nottingham Arena
13 Nov: Birmingham, NIA
15 Nov: Exeter, Westpoint
16 Nov: Bournemouth, BIC
18 Nov: Newcastle Arena
19 Nov: Glasgow, SECC
21 Nov: Sheffield Arena
23 Nov: Cardiff Arena
24 Nov: London, Wembley Arena


Lemonheads. Tour. Dates follow. New album. 25 Sep.

5 Oct: Norwich, UEA
6 Oct: London, Forum
9 Oct: Leeds, Met University
10 Oct: Oxford Brookes University
11 Oct: Cambridge, Junction
12 Oct: Liverpool, Academy
14 Oct: Coventry, Coliseum
15 Oct: Nottingham, Rock City
16 Oct: Manchester, Academy 2
17 Oct: Glasgow, ABC
21 Oct: Bristol, Academy
22 Oct: Wolverhampton, Wulfrun Hall


Eminem has designed a series of limited edition Nike trainers for charity. The sports shoes will be sold off via eBay tomorrow, with profits going to the Marshal Mathers Foundation. Just eight pairs of each design will be made.

Speaking about the project, Eminem told reporters: "We're always looking for new ways to try to raise money and awareness for the foundation, so when Nike approached us we jumped at the chance. Who wouldn't want to design their own line of Nikes?"

Well, presumably anyone not wanting to be associated with a company accused of operating or tolerating sweatshops in order to manufacture its goods at the minimum price. For a start.


Now, here's a great idea courtesy of Chief Kaiser Ricky Wilson. Observing that Pete Doherty, Justin Hawkins and Tom Chaplin are all currently rehabilitating themselves in the Priory - Wilson thinks they should form a rehab supergroup.

Told that Keane's Tom Chaplin was in rehab while being interviewed at the Reading Festival this weekend, Wilson told Xfm: "Is he in rehab? Blimey, I feel terrible if Tom is in The Priory. That's terrible news. Well, get well soon. Actually no, get well now. Why do people say 'Get well soon'? Surely you mean 'Get well now'?"

He continued: "There's talk of them forming a band? Excellent. They should be called Get Well Now. That's a great name for a group. Get Well Now with Justin, Pete and Tom. What a line up! You'd pay to see that wouldn't you? It'd be amazing. Like Right Said Fred, but a '90s version!"

yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

© UnLimited Publishing | subscribe at