CMU Daily - on the inside Tuesday 14th November
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- IMPALA announce consultation on Universal BMG merger
- Zune player launches
- TI triumphs at BET Hip Hop Awards
- Jabu Khanyile dies
- Arvizo mother pleads no contest over benefit fraud
- Bono defends Madonna
- Kelly Rowland is safe and well
- Shifty Disco prepares for tenth birthday
- Shakira plays air base
- Another OC mix
- New Joss Stone album in the can
- Duran Duran on stuff
- Thom Yorke paintings exhibited - maybe
- Bands line up to busk for the homeless
- Pink condemns Beyonce over fur
- Genesis swap dates
- Beatles downloads getting closer
- Buffett sues again over trademark infringement
- London investment company launches live funds
- Indian officials raid another mass piracy plant
- Aussie scientists invent air guitar t-shirt
- Britney facing legal action


Email in song title, artist and a sentence on why it's your favourite to [email protected]


We've mentioned it here in the Top Bit before, but it takes place tomorrow, so I think it's worth one more recommend. Tomorrow our good friends at MusicTank will stage an all day conference analysing the future of this here music business.

As I probably mentioned before, this will tap into the issues covered in various rants that have appeared here in the Top Bit in the past year - you know, how the music business has to prepare itself for some radical restructuring as the record labels slowly accept that they won't be able to secure future investments exclusively on conventional record sales. As IE Music's Tim Clark said at a past MusicTank seminar, this fact makes it a very exciting time for the music business, but it also makes it quite a scary one, especially if your company depends on, and people specialise in, a business model which some reckon is about to become redundant.

It is with that scariness in mind that MusicTank is staging the Beyond The Soundbytes Conference, which will take as its starting point the previously reported 'lay of the land' report of the same name, penned by artist manager Peter Jenner and recently published by MusicTank. The conference, taking place in London tomorrow, will cover a whole host of topics, including what new business models the industry should adopt, how these affect the relationships between artists, labels and the media, and how new processes should be managed. Needless to say, a whole load of leading practitioners from across the music business will participate.

You'll find full info, including details of how to attend, at



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Ladies and gentlemen, the next edition of Remix Night is this coming Friday. And with Remix chief Eddy TM taking a well deserved break, your host this month will be the mighty Freelance Hellraiser, so expect a good night. On the bill this time are Sugardaddy, the latest project from Groove Armada's Tom Findlay and Tim Hutton, whose recent album 'It's Good To Get High With The Wife', is one of the stand out releases of the year. Joining them will be the wonderful My Luminaries - whose new single 'Jumping The Great White' is just out. Meanwhile, joining the Freelance Hellraiser on the decks will be Mr Tim Deluxe. It all takes place this Friday, 17 Nov, at Cargo in London from 9pm to 3am. Entrance is a tenner. Tickets from

Full info>>

Another storming night for your diaries - the second edition of breaks fest Breaking Ground. All the big names are going to be on the bill - Pendulum (Live), Stanton Warriors, Rennie Pilgrem with MC Chickaboo, Splitloop (Live), Precision Cuts, Janette Slack, Breakfastaz, Deekline & Wizard with MC Ivory, Cltr-Z, Freshold, Si Begg, General Midi, Soto, Merka, Symmetrik, Dirtpop, Mr Sushi and Fyoog. Phew. It will all take place at London's seOne Club on Saturday 2 Dec, from 9.30pm to 6am. Tickets are £18.50 in advance - from - press info from Leyline.
Full info>>


Husky Rescue are great. Which is why it comes as a great surprise to me that we have not nominated them for MySpace Of The Day before, especially given that so many of the CMU team are rather big fans. The strains of 'Summertime Cowboy', which you can hear on the MySpace page, are a frequent feature of our office, and it's the sort of haunting noise that follows you home and turns up in your dreams. All the tracks that you can hear on the MySpace are similarly haunting, more so in fact. I'm writing this as though you all know who they are, when perhaps a little more explanation is required. Husky Rescue are from Finland, and might be described as ambient folk electronica. By me. And that's because I'm rubbish at genre assignment. Either way, it's melodic, catchy and beautiful, and if you haven't already made their acquaintance it's about time that you did.


Pan-European indies trade body IMPALA confirmed yesterday that it has begun a consultation of its members regarding the proposed takeover of BMG Music Publishing by the Universal Music Group. The merger of the BMG company with Universal's existing music publishing house will create a new company of equal size to, or slightly larger than (opinions vary), current market leader EMI Music Publishing.

Both Universal, and BMG owners Bertelsmann, say they do not feel their merger proposals will create an anticompetitive environment in the publishing sector but IMPALA, who earlier this year successfully had 2004's European Commission approval of the Sony BMG record label merger overturned, question that judgment. The EC has now asked the trade association to input into its own investigation into the Universal BMG proposals, and following a management meeting in Paris last week the trade association has said it will consult its members before providing its feedback to European competition officials.

Meanwhile, IMPALA bosses say they are still of the opinion that the Universal BMG merger will not win EC approval, adding "the parties' claims that they are relatively small major publishers are misleading as already they have rights in larger catalogues of songs than the other majors".

In a statement published yesterday they added: "The European court in July this year set tough precedents when IMPALA succeeded in overturning the EC's approval of the SonyBMG merger in recorded music. In 2000, in the attempted EMI Warner merger, the EC had already concluded that further concentration in publishing could not be tolerated. The new merger rules make it easier to block mergers".


So, presumably you were all partying yesterday to mark the arrival (in the US at least) of Microsoft's much anticipated Zune player? Yep, the IT conglom has formally re-entered the digital music space with a business model that mirrors that of main rivals Apple, after years of dabbling with different approaches. The music industry, increasingly concerned about the dominance of Apple in the digital music business, will be hoping Microsoft can successfully introduce some competition into the market, but it remains to be seen if the public embrace their player and download platform in the way they have the iPod and iTunes.

Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer was upbeat if realistic as the player officially launched. Speaking to reporters in Washington, he said "We can beat them [Apple], but it's not going to be easy. The market will have two big players for a long time, us and Apple. Obviously we're the David in this one. Apple's the Goliath".

Chris Stephenson, the man hired by Microsoft to lead the marketing of Zune, seemed to have a similarly realistic viewpoint: "The most important thing for us is to be relevant. We would like people to say there's a clear No. 2 in the marketplace".

Zune players will retail at more or less the same price as Apple's equivalent devices, with Microsoft's main distinguishing feature the inclusion of WiFi technology that enables the albeit limited sharing of music between players. Whether that will be enough to beat the iPod's continuing public appeal remains to be seen - industry insiders have mixed views of Microsoft's chances, though all seem to agree with Ballmer that it's going to be an uphill struggle.


US rap star TI took three awards at the inaugural BET Hip Hop Awards, held in Atlanta at the weekend. The rapper, nominated for eight awards, won those for Best CD and Best Hip Hop Video as well as receiving an MVP Of The Year honour, whatever that is. Oh, okay, I just looked it up on Wikipedia. MVP is short for Most Valuable Player and it seems to mostly relate to sport. Anyway, TI clearly felt that his wins were significant in terms of bigging up southern US rap, saying: "You can't hate on hard work and talent. This awards show will show people a lot about where I come from."

Grandmaster Flash was also honoured at the ceremony with the I Am Hip Hop Icon Award, which he was quite pleased about. Accepting his award, he told the audience: "To get an award for my technological ability means a whole lot more than anything else I've accomplished in my life."

UK rapper Sway got the award for Best UK act, as voted for by MTV Base viewers and BBC 1Xtra listeners - but you knew that was going to happen, of course, because we already reported on it.


South African musician Jabu Khanyile has died at the age of 49 after suffering from diabetes and prostate cancer. The singer, who performed at the Johannesburg Live 8 concert, passed away on Saturday night after he was admitted to hospital in the country's capital city.

Born in Soweto in 1957, Khanyile, known for his colourful Masai costume, first came to public attention in the mid eighties as a drummer with his band Bayete, soon taking over as lead vocalist. The group achieved hit songs with the likes of 'Mbube' and 'Mbombela'. When the band split in 1993 Khanyile went on to establish a successful solo career, his first solo album, 'The Prince', winning him a best artist prize at the All Africa Music Awards in 2000. He became renowned for his defence of and interest in all kinds of African music, collaborating with artists from other African countries including the likes of Senegal's Youssou N'Dour and Papa Wemba from the Democratic Republic Of Congo.

Khanyile was one of those who, prior to Live 8, voiced the opinion that Africans themselves ought to tell their own story, not have westerners telling westerners about the continent's problems. "We are the ones who can spread the message with passion", he said.


The mother of Gavin Arvizo, the alleged victim in Michael Jackson's 2005 child molestation case, has pleaded no contest on charges of benefit fraud. You might remember her as Janet Arvizo, but she is, as previously reported, confusingly now going by the name of Janet Jackson because of her marriage to one Jay Jackson. Anyway, Jackson has been ordered by a judge to perform 150 hours of community and to repay more than $8,600 to the county social services department.

The judge in the case, Barbara Johnson, said that the charges will be reduced to a misdemeanour if she pays the money and performs the community service prior to being sentenced on 27 Apr next year. Jackson would have faced up to seven years in prison, for accepting fraudulently obtained assistance and committing perjury four times on welfare applications, had she not entered the no-contest plea - which is not an admission of guilt per se but is treated as a guilty plea for sentencing purposes.

Accused of hiding the information that she had received a substantial compensation settlement from JC Penney before applying for welfare payments, Jackson maintains that she "never misrepresented anything intentionally". You will remember that when asked questions about her welfare claims by Michael Jackson's legal team when she appeared on the stand at the child abuse case, Jackson (then Arvizo...) took the fifth.


Bono has defended Madonna's proposed adoption of little David Banda, which is a relief, because I have been anxiously awaiting his opinion on this very subject. He said: "Madonna should be applauded for helping to take a child out of the worst poverty imaginable and giving him a better chance in life. Baby David is lucky to have been adopted by someone who can give him a chance of survival in this world and I don't think it's fair that people are criticising her".

He added: "About 20 years ago when my wife Ali and I went to Africa, shortly after Live Aid, a man who quite clearly loved his child came up to us and begged us to take him. It is heartbreaking but he asked us to take his child home with us because he couldn't feed him. This happens all the time in parts of Africa where unthinkable poverty means people simply can't feed their children."

So, how's that adoption process going, anyway? Well, that previously reported planned complaint by that Malawian coalition of human rights groups has been brought to the country's high court. The Human Rights Consultative Committee is challenging "the bending of laws and fast-tracking" that are necessary to allow the singer to adopt the child. David Banda is, of course, now living with Madonna, and his natural father, Yohane Banda, has said that he wants his son to stay with the pop superstar.


Kelly Rowland's management have released a statement saying that she's safe and well, despite rumours that the singer was hurt in a bombing last week. Rowland, one of the two formerly of Destiny's Child that aren't Beyonce, was actually in Singapore when the terrorist activity took place in Jakarta, but her subsequent show in Jakarta was cancelled.


One of the world's finest singles club labels, Shifty Disco, is preparing to celebrate its tenth anniversary - their first ever single, Dustball's 'Senor Nachos', having been released on 27 Jan 1997.

The birthday will be celebrated with a number of special events and releases, including the release of a special three CD box set which will cover the 'Now', 'Then' and 'Maybe' (not sure what the latter involves, though I get the impression the Shifty Disco guys aren't 100% sure just yet either), which will be available on 22 Jan. Preceding that will be a new double a-side single from Paperlung (the new venture from former Boo Radley Sice, if I'm not mistaken) - the band's second single, and a forerunner to a new album, due out on Shifty Disco in the Spring.

Around about all this will be four Shifty Disco nights featuring The Race, My Device, Seagull Strange and the aforementioned Paperlung, which will take in the following venues on these exact dates...

25 Jan: Cable Club @ Pressure Point, Brighton
26 Jan: Luminaire, Kilburn, London
27 Jan: Zodiac, Oxford
28 Jan: Louisiana, Bristol


Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez has opened the La Carlota military airbase, which was at the centre of a failed coup back in 2002, for a Shakira gig. The Colombian singer had not been able to find a venue in the country, Chavez revealed in a televised speech, saying that he decided to open the base after getting a letter from concert promoters. Chavez went on to say: "maybe I'll put on a wig and go see Shakira". Bless.


Disturbing news everybody. Warner is about to release the sixth edition of The OC soundtrack. This is disturbing because I wasn't aware there'd been a fifth edition, and that means my OC soundtrack collection is shamefully incomplete. Which is a shame, because my interest in OC soundtracks seems to have lasted somewhat longer than my interest in the TV show (though none of the subsequent editions has been quite as perfect as the first). Anyway, this sixth edition, out 4 Dec, sees unknown bands covering songs by slightly less unknown bands, as follows (each song's original artist in brackets).

Goldspot - Float On (Modest Mouse)
Rock Kills Kid - Turn My Camera On (Spoon)
Lady Sovereign - Pretty Vacant (The Sex Pistols)
Mates of State - California (Phantom Planet)
Pinback - Wasted (Black Flag)
John Paul White - Can't Get It Out Of My Head (ELO)
Rogue Wave - Debaser (The Pixies)
Syd Matters - Hello Sunshine (Super Furry Animals)
Tally Hall - Smile Like You Mean It (The Killers)
The M's - Come Into My Room (Clinic)
Band of Horses - End's Not Near (The New Year)
Chris Holmes - Into Dust (Mazzy Star)

More at - press info from those Warner types.


Joss Stone has completed work on a new album, and it's due for a March release. Produced by Raphael Saadiq, Billboard reports that the following songs will appear: 'Headturner', 'Tell Me What We're Gonna Do Now', 'Music', 'Tell Me 'Bout It', 'Nothing Better Than (The iPod Song)' and 'I Wish I Never Met You'. So now you know. Stone, by the way, makes her movie debut next month in the film adaptation of the Christopher Paolini novel 'Eragon', released on 15 Dec.


Duran Duran have been talking about their previously reported collaborations with Justin Timberlake and producer Timbaland. Simon Le Bon says: "We've got some good stuff happening. We've done three tracks with Timbaland. We've collaborated in a writing and production manner on one of those tracks with Justin Timberlake. We've got a lot of really hot producers who are hotly interested in working with us at the moment. We are in a very good space."

On the recent departure from the band of Andy Taylor, bassist John Taylor added: "There were many strong differences of feeling within the band for some time now."


Artwork that might be by Radiohead's Thom Yorke is being exhibited in Barcelona. I say 'might be' because Yorke does the arty thing under a pseudonym, and has been generally tight lipped on what names he uses and what pictures he's created. But the exhibition, which kicks off on 23 Nov, is called 'Stanley Donwood & Dr Tchock: Paintings, Etc' and it is generally thought 'Dr Tchock' is Yorke. Either way, they'll definitely be a Radiohead theme at the show because Donwood (real name Dan Rickwood) has done most of the cover artwork for Radiohead's releases, and that will be featured in the exhibition. Part of a project called 'Dead Children Painting', you'll find more info on Donwood's website at


Carl Barat, Supergrass, Athlete and Bez are all set to do a bit of busking on London's South Bank in aid of homeless charity Crisis, which is all very commendable, though there's a chance they might take money away from real buskers, some of whom depend on their busking incomes to avoid becoming, erm, homeless. Still, Crisis is a great organisation, and as well as the busking the participating musicians will be selling Christmas puddings in aid of the charity, some of which will contain special sixpences which can be exchanged for prizes, including tickets to a special gig at the Proud Gallery in the New Year featuring Supergrass, Graham Coxon, Athlete and Ed Harcourt. The money raised from it all goes towards supplying a Christmas dinner and medical and dental check ups for homeless people over the Christmas period. For more info check - press info from [email protected]


Pink, who is over here on a UK tour, has criticised Beyonce for wearing dead things as fashion accessories. Commenting on Ms Knowles much documented habit of wearing (and selling) fur, Pink has told reporters: "Some of the practices are so cruel and as a celebrity you have a responsibility to think about the message you're sending out by wearing fur. People will think it's OK or cool, but it's not. I only hope she gets bit on the ass by whatever animal she wears". All of which is to be very much commended (not the wearing fur bit, the criticising of it), so much so I'm awarding Pink a special prize - the inclusion of her tour dates in the CMU Daily. I never knew she was so popular in Aberdeen - two dates there I see. It'll be cold in Aberdeen this time of year. She should wrap up warn. A nice fur coat would be just the trick.

14 Nov: Brighton Centre, Brighton
16 Nov: The Point - Dublin, Ireland
17+18 Nov: Odessey Arena, Belfast
20+21 Nov: Press & Journal Arena, Aberdeen
23+24 Nov: SECC, Glasgow
26 Nov: Brighton Centre, Brighton
27 Nov: BIC, Bournemouth
29 Nov: NEC, Birmingham
30 Nov: SECC, Glasgow
2 Dec: Hallam FM Arena, Sheffield
3 Dec: BIC, Bournemouth
4 Dec: Wembley Arena, London


Ah, routing issues. They affect us all eventually. In fact, yesterday my whole day was turned upside down because of routing issues. It was really quite traumatic. By comparison, the "routing issues" that have forced Genesis to swap their Manchester and Twickenham dates seem pretty insignificant. But in case you're wondering, it means that the reformed trio will now play Manchester's Old Trafford on 7 Jul and Twickenham Stadium on 8 Jul. Previously it was otherwise, but now it is so.


While researching this story I found a 2004 report on IT website C:Net that said "talks have begun that could finally make the songs of The Beatles available for sale online". It also reported that "Microsoft is planning to open an internet music store this year". How things change.

Anyway, word has it that talks are under way that could, erm, finally make the songs of The Beats available for sale online. Following those previously reported indications by the boss of Beatles company Apple Corps that plans were properly underway to make the fab four's music available for legit download, EMI Group Vice Chairman David Munns has confirmed that Beatles downloads will definitely be available, erm, "soon". It seems, however, that a Beatles online merchandise store will launch ahead of any download venture.


Talking of websites selling merchandise, though this time of the unofficial variety, American singer songwriter Jimmy Buffett has filed a lawsuit in a bid to close down a website which, he claims, is violating his trademarks. The lawsuit, filed in Galveston, Texas, accuses one Robert Akard of operating a website which sells Buffett trademarked items without the singer's permission. It's not the first time Buffett has issued proceedings against Akard, but a previous court order in Nevada has proved insufficient as the alleged fraudster moves his business from state to state (so far he's been based in New York, Florida and now Texas). Buffett's lawyer, Tony Buzbee, told reporters yesterday: "This guy, who Buffett and his people have chased all over the country, apparently has set up shop in Texas".


CMU's current favourite investment firm (if we awarded badges to our favourite investment firms, these guys would have one) Ingenious Media has launched two new live entertainment venture capital trusts with a view to investing in companies that produce and promote new and established live talent.

The company hopes to raise in the region of £50 million for each of the trusts, which will then be invested in companies across the live entertainments sector. That might include concerts, festivals, exhibitions, theatrical shows, conferences, trade fairs and sporting events.

Confirming the new trusts, Ingenious chairman Patrick McKenna said, almost in English: "As a component of media, the live sector is becoming ever more important as consumers seek special and unique shared experiences to augment their increased consumption of digitally delivered content which they experience in a more insular fashion".


Our good friends over there at the Indian Music Industry have said they have conducted an anti-piracy raid in New Delhi where they seized over 90,000 counterfeit CDs and other goods with a street value of 200 million rupees (£2.3 million), which is rather a lot. 19 CD stampers were seized (if I knew anything about CD manufacturing I'd tell you what a stamper is, but unfortunately I don't), and the plant owner was arrested.

Confirming the raid, IMI president VJ Lazarus said in a statement yesterday: "IMI has been working for the last ten years to control piracy and in the last four months itself, it has conducted raids on two of Delhi's biggest CD plants. We have reason to believe that this is a piracy network spanning the whole of Northern India. We will fight for justice against these pirates till the very end."

The music piracy trade in India is significant. So much so, yesterday's raid was not the biggest undertaken by IMI - back in July they seized 300 million rupees worth of counterfeit goods at another New Delhi manufacturing plant.


A team of Australian scientists, presumably with too much time on their hands, have created the air guitar t-shirt, which turns air guitarists fake strumming into real music. The shirt, developed by the Australian Commonwealth Scientific And Industrial Research Organisation, has sensors within the elbows that send information to a computer, which creates music based on its wearer's air guitaring. Richard Helmer, one of the scientists behind the t-shirt, told reporters the t-shirt was "an easy-to-use, virtual instrument that allows real-time music making" and that it could be used by "players without significant musical or computing skills".

Asked about the new invention, Metro quote Jeff Disaster of UK Air Guitar, the people behind the previously reported Air Guitar Championships, as saying: "I would love to get one but I don't think they would be allowed in air guitar championships. The rule is there can be no guitars on the stage; this is essentially a midi-guitar, so it violates the main rule of air guitar".


Britney Spears is facing legal action from Irish newspaper The Sunday Independent, after she sued the title for suggesting in an interview, published in June this year, that the singer's marriage to Kevin Federline was on the rocks. The Independent are furious, given the short time elapsed between that suit, and her decision to serve Fed-ex with divorce papers. The publication's lawyer, Simon McAleese, says: "She's trying to get money. It was plainly bloody obvious that her marriage was on the rocks when the interview took place. She is a Hollywood airhead. Why should my clients have to pay for her bubble headed rubbish? We're fed up. Her gaffe has been blown. It's a shame we're dealing with ludicrous drivel like this as it can be costly."

Elsewhere in Britney/Kevin divorce news, Federline has, according to various gossipy sources, been seen buying his underpants at budget store Walmart, which is clearly a no-no for minor celebrities famous for being married to pop princesses. It follows a variety of reports suggesting that he's bouncing cheques, has no credit left, and isn't going to get any money out of his ex wife because of her 'ironclad' prenuptial agreement. Colour me a sucker, but I'm almost starting to feel sorry for him.

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