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

In today's CMU Daily:
- Jacko gets mixed reception at World Music Awards
- Queen top all time best sellers list
- Bono gets his hat back
- Billie Joe on Skids track, Bush
- Bragg still concerned about social networking implications
- Levert tribute planned
- Gotti signs Carlton
- Ghostface collaborates with son
- The View album, tour
- New Kitsune Maison compilation incoming
- Bees single, tour
- Pharrell UK live dates
- Michael set to play for nurses
- MCR plan theatrical tour
- Beirut cancel current tour
- Jeremy Warmsley at 93 Ft East
- Kerrang! Tour announced
- Best of In The City tonight
- EMI Group confident despite revenues fall
- EMI publishing gossip
- Anglo man launches new plugging firm
- Nokia launch music recommenders platform
- Channel 4 to offer downloads of shows
- UMYX launch video remix project
- Nightclub firm sell off entertainment unit
- Shakira weighs six tonnes shocker
- Jake Shears fancies Sugababe's bloke
- Feeling man on gay stuff
- Alex James lays in to Gallaghers


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


Now, we are big fans of Hafdis Huld here at CMU, and Caro played her recent album, 'Dirty Paper Cup', just the other day. And let's not forget we recommended her through the MySpace Of The Day slot back in June. And, we all know the huge impact a MSOTD nomination can have - you'll all remember what happened after we made the Beatles My Space Of The Day back in early 1963. But despite all that, the high number of votes coming through for Ms Huld's single 'Tomoko' for the CMU Track Of The Year poll makes me thing there's some proactive lobbying going on by her people. Not that we object to such things - we love a bit of corruption when it comes to awards and polls - but we thought we better let the rest of you know that you should also be adopting a similar strategy of corruption if you want a placing in our end of year top ten.

I am talking, of course, about the CMU Favourite Track Of The Year poll. This is your chance to vote for your very favourite song of 2006. You can vote for any song that first surfaced this year - including single releases, b-sides, remixes, album tracks and bootleg mixes. To vote, just email the name of the track, the artist and (if you can be bothered) a two sentence reason why it's your favourite. Email it in to [email protected] right about now (well, before 8 Dec).

Perhaps you too want to vote for Hafdis Huld. You can check out her music, including 'Tomoko', on her MySpace at Or perhaps you'd like to give your nod of approval to one of the following (any of which might end up being my vote): Delays' simply storming single 'Valentine', Bell X1's gorgeous ballady 'Rocky Took A Lover', Adam Freeland's brilliant remix of The Doors' 'Hello I Love You', The Loose Cannons' super single 'Why You', Matt Willis' really rather good second solo outing 'Hey Kid', Space Cowboy's dance floor filling 'I Know What Girls Like', or Misty's Big Adventure's brilliant new single 'Fashion Parade' - out this week complete with Noddy Holder guest spot (or Jeremy Vine guest spot if you buy it from iTunes). Any of them, or anything else, let us know your favourite - [email protected]



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The new issue of Clash, out now, profiles our band of the year The Kooks in an exclusive and revealing interview, plus we remember 2006 with the help of Razorlight, The Subways, Hot Chip, Good Shoes and a host of others. There are further exclusive chats with The Magic Numbers, Smokey Robinson, Larrikin Love, Andrew Weatherall, The Byrds, Albert Hammond Jr, Steve Reich, Vincent Vincent and the Villains and oh so much more. Stuck to the front is a FREE 16-track CD of more of our hand-picked choices set to delight your ears over the coming months, including The Enemy, CSS, Mumm-Ra, Metric among them. Plus, full details of the award winning magazine's monthly events (also see and good honest album reviews.

Available for just £3.80 at WH Smith, HMV, Virgin, Fopp, Borders and all good newsagents. For more information see



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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>>


So, not a new artist this morning, but a news worthy one, so what the hell? Mr Jason Donovan is, of course, currently residing in the Australian jungle on the latest outing of I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here. To mark the occasion he's set up a MySpace and posted a brand new song there, called 'Good Day'. Word has it his people are talking to various labels about the possibility of releasing Jason's new material - presumably with the intent of capitalising on the renewed media interest in all things Mr Donovan created by the show - and I hope someone does, because I've always thought Jason comes across really well in interviews, and it would be good for there to be a reason for him to be interviewed more often. We hear more new tracks may appear on the MySpace while the jungle show airs. Meanwhile, for those with nostalgic memories of Jason's peak (which was a considerable peak, don't forget, so much so 'Ten Good Reasons' appears in the 100 best selling albums poll due to air on VH1 this weekend, albeit at 100), there's the pop promo for 'Sealed With A Kiss' up there too.


Michael Jackson has appeared on stage for the first time since his acquittal last year of those child abuse charges, though he disappointed many fans who had expected him to give a full performance of his classic song 'Thriller'.

Those expectations were caused by those media reports that followed confirmation that Jackson would appear at the World Music Awards in London to pick up a special tribute award recognising that he has sold over 100 million albums during his career to date. But Jackson last night said that there had been a "misunderstanding" regarding his intentions to perform at the event. Instead he sang just two verses of 'Heal The World'.

Fans, many of whom were disappointed that Jackson had not made any effort to meet them outside the awards event at the start of the evening, initially booed the star when he left the stage after collecting his award from Beyonce Knowles without giving a performance. Some were later placated when he returned to give the mini-performance of 'Heal The World' after which he took time to shake hands of people in the front row at the awards event, although others still felt his performance was somewhat lacklustre compared to what they had been expecting. In the end it was US teenage pop star Chris Brown who performed a version of 'Thriller'.

Other winners at the World Music Awards, which recognise commercial success on a global level, included Madonna, who won Best Pop Artist; Nelly Furtado, who won Best Pop/Rock Artist; Nickelback, who won Best Rock Group; Beyonce, who took Best R&B; Kanye West, who won Best Hip Hop; Shakira, who took Best Latin Artist; and Bob Sinclair, who won Best DJ. Winners in the country awards included James Blunt (Best Selling British Artist), Elissa (Best Selling Arabic Artist), Andrea Bocelli (Best Selling Italian Artist) and Enya (Best Selling Irish Artist).


More lists of best sellers, and Queen's first 'Greatest Hits' album has topped a list of the 100 best selling UK albums of all time, which has been compiled by the Official Charts Company for VH1 based on sales data from the last 50 years (which presumably means there's a slight margin of error where older data is concerned). The hits package, first released in 1981, has sold 600,000 more units than its nearest rival, The Beatles' 'Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band'.

Three other greatest hits albums appear in the top ten, including the second edition of Queens' 'Greatest Hits', which is at 7. Abba's 'Gold' hits album is at 5 and Madonna's 'Immaculate Collection' at 10. The other best selling original albums are Oasis' '(What's The Story) Morning Glory' at 3, Dire Straits' 'Brothers In Arms' at 4, Pink Floyd's 'The Dark Side Of The Moon' at 6 and Michael Jackson's 'Thriller' at 8 and 'Bad' at 9.

Michael Jackson has three entries in the whole 100, as do Oasis and Celine Dion, though Robbie Williams appears the most, with six entries. Other more contemporary artists appearing include Dido, in twice at 15 and 22, James Blunt at 19 and David Gray at 20. Bands and artists who you might expect to see but who don't appear at all include Bob Dylan, Sting, The Rolling Stones and The Sex Pistols.

Blur's Alex James will host a rundown of the chart on VH1 on Saturday - though, as quotes below suggest, don't expect him to be expressing too much delight for the third best selling album ever.


U2 have won their legal contest against their former stylist Lola Cashman. As previously reported, the band originally sued for the return of a number of items they claimed the stylist had stolen from them back in 1987, and which Cashman claimed to have been given as gifts at that time by the band's frontman, Bono.

The latest court battle is the result of Cashman's appeal against the original ruling that the items must be given back to the rock group. The items, valued at no more than £3400, included Bono's iconic Stetson hat, some metal hoop earrings, a pair of black trousers, and hundreds of photographs. During the course of the appeal hearing, Cashman claimed that Bono was running around in his underwear backstage on the last night of the tour, when she asked him if she could have the hat, whereupon he "plonked" it on her head.

Responding to the ruling, Cashman told CMU: "I am obviously disappointed with this verdict. It seems that in this day and age the cult of celebrity has a far greater bearing on the outcome of a court case than the facts presented. I have not yet had sufficient time to fully digest the consequences of this decision. As and when I have I will make a further statement".


And talking of U2, Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong has revealed how his group's collaboration with the Irish band on Skids cover 'The Saints Are Coming' came about. That particular track, reworked by the two bands to raise funds for Music Rising - the charity set up to replace instruments lost as a result of Hurricane Katrina - was chosen because 'Saints' is the name of the New Orleans football team. Of course, one might have guessed that that was the reasoning behind it, given that they first performed it at the first game of the season at the Saint's Louisiana Superdome, which, you may remember, housed many made homeless by the hurricane.

Anyway, Armstrong told NME: "It's a huge event for New Orleans to get their team back after losing everything. The fact that the team was coming back was a major thing for them. It just became a monumental event, a little something to celebrate."

The singer went on to criticise George W Bush's handling of that crisis, saying "So many politicians, they don't have a clue what's its like to be working class or lower class or live in any sort of poverty stricken area, they are completely disconnected with that sort of lifestyle. And their reaction to it all made that clear just how disconnected."

U2's The Edge said something too: "It was a big watershed moment because it exposed how vulnerable America was ultimately. This was the world superpower, and it couldn't deal with something that happened in its own backyard."


Billy Bragg has been talking some more about his concerns regarding the terms and conditions that new artists are signing up to when they post their music on social networking platforms like MySpace and Bebo. While accepting that such websites are great promotional platforms which, had they been around when Bragg started out, "would have saved me two years of playing in dingy pubs in south London", he told the BBC: "The majority of people posting songs on to social-networking sites don't have a record deal. They're using the site as a way of getting attention to get a deal, so often the first legal contract they're entering into regarding their work will be through the terms and conditions of that site. If we're in a situation where sites are harvesting intellectual property rights, it almost becomes impossible to use these sites without consulting a lawyer".

Although some of the key social networking sites, MySpace included, have responded to Bragg's specific criticism about their terms and conditions, the singer says there is a need for an industry-standard rights agreement "that recognises that ownership resides ultimately with the originator". Even then he airs some caution regarding the use of such platforms, noting that "undoubtedly Rupert Murdoch is making a lot of money selling advertising on MySpace and he's not paying a penny for content".

Bragg's latest comments coincided with yesterday's MusicTank conference on the future of the music business, which was initiated by a special report penned by Billy Bragg's manager Peter Jenner. Commenting on his report, Jenner says that the music industry needs to change its "mindset", especially regarding the way music is sold.

He reckons that the future of traditional high street record stores is looking grim because "the supply to Tesco, Sainsbury's and Asda is going to lead to the collapse of HMV as a record business. HMV is now almost already mainly video and games with some music still in there, and I think that retreat will go on. The big-store model, with all the titles, is a dead duck".

Jenner also criticises the ways the record companies have approached the potential of the internet as a sales tool. He says: "They weren't really able to come to grips with the essential truth of the internet, which is that it's all about sharing of files. They try to chain it, put lead weights on it, so files wouldn't move around. All it does is penalise the honest".


The family of late R&B star Gerald Levert are planning to celebrate his life tomorrow with a musical tribute expected to be attended by the likes of Stevie Wonder, Angie Stone and Johnny Gill. Fans will be admitted to the event, which will take place at midday at the Cleveland Music Hall, on a first come first serve basis.

As previously reported, Levert died of a heart attack on 11 Nov, aged 40. Initial autopsy reports indicate that the singer was suffering from a moderate heart disease which may have prompted his untimely demise. Levert was, of course, the son of chief O'Jay Eddie Levert, and had just returned from a tour of South Africa with his father when he died. He had recently finished a new studio album, scheduled for release in February next year, and had also co-authored a book, 'I Got Your Back', with his father and writer Lyah LeFlore.


Irv Gotti, busy rebuilding his music empire after being cleared of those high profile money laundering allegations, has announced that he has signed Vanessa Carlton, who will be the first new artist on his The Inc label since forming an alliance with Universal Motown Records.

Carlton, of course, enjoyed some success with both her 2002 debut album 'Be Not Nobody', and her 2004 long player 'Harmonium'. Her first album for The Inc will be released next year. Confirming the signing, Gotti said in a statement: "Vanessa is easily one of the best singer-songwriters that I have ever been around in my entire life. I thank God for bringing us together and for her believing in me and giving me the opportunity to show the world what I have seen, which is V being totally amazing".

By the way, if this story is making any of you think "mmm, I wonder how Irv Gotti has gone about rebuilding his music business since his acquittal on the drugs money charges", well, lucky you, because the former hip hop mogul is currently making a reality show for VH1, all about his revival as a big player in the US music industry. All you have to do now is wait for it to air.


Wu-Tang man Ghostface Killah's next album features two collaborations with his seventeen year old son, Sun God. I'm not sure whether that's his real name or not. Anyway, he appears on 'Miguel Sanchez' and 'God 2 God' on the long player 'More Fish'. Other collaborators on the album include Madlib and MF Doom.


The View have announced that their debut album, 'Hats Off To The Buskers', will be out on 22 Jan, preceded by the release of a single, 'Same Jeans' on 15 Jan.

The buzz band are set to play support slots for Primal Scream this month, with some headline dates this month and next. Here is a full list:

17 Nov: Glasgow SECC (Primal Scream)
18 Nov: Manchester Apollo (Primal Scream)
19 Nov: Manchester Apollo (Primal Scream)
21 Nov: Liverpool Academy (Primal Scream)
22 Nov: Nottingham Rock City (Primal Scream)
24 Nov: Hammersmith Apollo (Primal Scream)
25 Nov: Norwich UEA (Primal Scream)
26 Nov: Aldershot West End Centre
27 Nov: Cambridge Corn Exchange (Primal Scream)
28 Nov: Bristol Academy (Primal Scream)
29 Nov: Southampton Guildhall (Primal Scream)
2 Dec: London Brixton Academy (Primal Scream)
4 Dec: London Astoria
5 Dec: Birmingham Irish Centre
6 Dec: Manchester Academy 2
7 Dec: Glasgow Carling Academy


The Kitsune Maison people will release another edition of their rather good compilation series on 27 Nov. Generally the track listings for these compos speak for themselves, though if you want more, there are preview clips of each track available at the URL below. First, here's the tracklisting:

Simian Mobile Disco - I Believe
The Lovely Feathers - Frantic
The Whip - Trash
Fox N'wolf - Youth Alcoholic
Klaxons - Gravity Rainbow Van She Remix
Freeform Five - Home Wit U
Boys Noize - Feel Good (Tv=Off)
Gossip - In The Way Of Control Soulwax Nite Version
Alex Gopher - Motorcycle Wet Clutch Short Edit
The World Domination Vs Adam Sky - Galactic Lover
Dead Disco - The Teatment Metronomy Remix O
The Valentinos - Kafka Bag Raiders How'd Ya Like It At Five Remix
Oh No! Oh My! - I Love You All The Time
The Whitest Boy Alive - Done With You

Previews and stuff at


The Bees are back with a download only single, 'Left Foot Stepdown', taken from their third album 'Octopus', scheduled for release early next year. The download is out tomorrow, and a tour follows:

18 Nov: Cardiff CF10
19 Nov: Bristol Thekla
20 Nov: Brighton Concorde 2
21 Nov: Southsea Pier
22 Nov: London KCLSU
26 Nov: Stoke Sugarmill
27 Nov: Glasgow Oran Mor
28 Nov: Hull Welly Club
29 Nov: Manchester Club Academy


Pharrell Williams is set to play two UK live shows next month. The Neptune will appear at Manchester's Apollo on 14 Dec and Brixton Academy on 20 Dec.


George Michael is to play a free gig for NHS nurses at Camden's Roundhouse on 20 Dec. The star say's it's to say thank you for caring for his late mother, who died of cancer in 1997. The singer explains: "Almost 10 years ago, during the last week of my mother's life, I told my friends and family that if I ever played my own concerts again, I would make sure to do a free one for NHS nurses. The nurses that helped my family at that time were incredible people, and I realised just how undervalued these amazing people are. So I want to thank them with a Christmas concert. I can't wait - and neither can the tour crew, for entirely different reasons!"

NHS registered nurses can apply for tickets at the star's website,


My Chemical Romance's Gerard Way has spoken to about his band's upcoming UK tour, and says that their new show will be far more dramatic than their recent, more low key UK shows.

The singer said: "We're a very theatrical band and we didn't show up with a lot of production on this tour because we wanted to keep it scaled down to do the show next year and really bring 'The Black Parade'. We were concerned about that, and the crowd made us realise that what's special about us isn't that stuff. 'The Black Parade' has got to be something much much bigger. We're trying to really bring the record to life in a live setting which isn't something we can do right now. These shows are really saying hello, hey it's cool, we're back, thanks for supporting us, we're gonna play a lot of new songs for you guys."

The dates of next year's tour, as previously reported, are as follows:

20 Mar: Plymouth Pavillions
21 Mar: Brighton Centre
22 Mar: Birmingham NIA Academy
24 Mar: Manchester MEN
25 Mar: Cardiff CIA
26 Mar: Nottingham Arena
27 Mar: Glasgow SECC
29 Mar: London Wembley Arena


Beirut, aka Zach Condon, has cancelled all his upcoming European and American tour dates after he was hospitalised in Paris recently, apparently due to 'extreme exhaustion.' Condon was subsequently discharged, but was advised by doctors to rest.

A statement released by Beirut's label said: "This was an extremely difficult decision to make and was only decided on after doing everything we possibly could to make it work out. This is Beirut's first-ever tour, and while the band played some of the greatest shows of their lives, the attendant stress of organizing and travelling with a full-blown, 12-person orkestar took its toll. Having put all of his energy into each and every performance, Zach was briefly hospitalized for extreme exhaustion."


CMU favourite Jeremy Warmsley finishes his current tour of the UK with a headline gig at 93 Ft East on Tuesday. That's 21 Nov, if you're having trouble working that out. He will release the next single taken from his recently released and very good debut album, 'The Art Of Fiction' on 18 Dec. The track is called 'Dirty Blue Jeans', and the limited edition 7" will come specially wrapped in a denim sleeve, which is fun, and is accompanied by a DVD containing all four videos from the LP to date. Press info on all things Warmsley from Sainted PR.


Get ready for the Kerrang! Tour 2007. Well, that's what the press release says. I won't be personally insulted if you don't, but the line up is looking rather good, so you might want to. Biffy Clyro, The Bronx, The Audition and I Am Ghost will all appear on the tour, which will appear at the following places on the following dates:

11 Jan: Belfast Mandela Hall
12 Jan: Dublin Ambassador
14 Jan: Cardiff University
15 Jan: Bristol Academy
16 Jan: Nottingham Rock City
18 Jan: Southampton Guildhall
19 Jan: Norwich UEA
20 Jan: Manchester Academy
22 Jan: Newcastle Academy
23 Jan: Glasgow Barrowlands
24 Jan: Liverpool Academy
26 Jan: Birmingham Academy
27 Jan: London Astoria

On the tour, Biffy Clyro bassist James Johnston told reporters (while grinning, apparently): "This tour means a lot to us. Kerrang! has always supported us and it's a real privilege to be part of this. We're very excited to be headlining and we can't wait to rawk! We feel most at home on the road so it's great to be going on tour again. There are people all over the country that we can't wait to see, so roll on the New Year!"

For their part, I Am Ghost's Steven Juliano said the following stuff: "We are so excited to play this tour. We're looking forward to meeting all of you. Our live show will be something unique and inspiring."

Tickets go on sale this Saturday.


For those that didn't make it to In The City, there are some special Best Of In The City showcases upcoming, the first two in London tonight and tomorrow night. Details are below - meanwhile unsigned bands are being encouraged to bring along demo tapes to tonight's show. Demos should be handed in to one of the ITC team at the Acoustic Stage - some demo tracks will be played on the night, while others might be invited to participate in future spin off events.

Anyway, here are the line up details...

Leg One, Thursday 16 Nov, 7.30pm, SIN, Charing Cross Road, Entry free
ITC Unsigned: Gideon Conn, Karima Francis, New World Record, The Wombats.
Acoustic: The Amber Plan, Through Snowy Static, Thom Stone, Smoke Feathers, Paris Motel.
DJs: Goldierocks, Tom Ravenscroft (channel 4 radio), Uncle Buck, Cluekid and Cottie.

Leg 2: Friday 17 Nov, 10pm-5am, 333 Club, Old Street, £10, £6 / (free to industry types)
The Franco, Paris Motel (full band), Milke, Fell City Girl, Blondelle.

By the way, have we mentioned that In The City is launching a new New York event next June? You'll find info and all that kind of stuff at


As expected, the EMI Group posted financial figures yesterday that showed a decline in both revenue and profit for the first half of the current financial year. Revenues for the period were £867.9 million, down 4.1% on the same period last year. Profit was also down, from £86.7 million to £62.7 million.

The company's fortunes were hit most by a 5.2% slide in revenues in its recorded music division. This was partly because of the nature of the release schedule, with a number of key releases coming in the second half of the year. But overall figures were also affected by that previously reported "one off" accounting fraud in the company's Brazilian record company, which was discovered only recently, and which resulted in a previous overstatement of revenue of £12 million.

However, with those key albums - including new material from Robbie Williams, Norah Jones, Keith Urban, Joss Stone, plus the Beatles 'LOVE' album - currently in the process of being released, EMI chiefs say they are confident that overall they will achieve full year expectations.

Group chairman Eric Nicoli told the London Stock Exchange: "In EMI Music, our A&R strategy is proving to be successful. We continue to break new acts, who are not only producing the hits of today, but are strengthening our roster for the long term".


Elsewhere in the world of EMI, gossipers are gossiping on what the sudden departure of co-CEO Marty Bandier will mean for the major's publishing company. As previously reported, Bandier recently confirmed he was leaving EMI Music Publishing now, rather than in 18 months time as originally expected. As a result word has it the company's other co-CEO, Roger Faxon, who will now have complete control of the publishing house, will promote Dan McCarroll to a senior creative role. He will essentially replace Evan Lamberg, current EVP Creative, who is expected to leave the company sometime soon, very probably to join Bandier if and when he decides on his next venture.


Anglo Plugging staffer Brad Hunner is setting up his own independent radio promotion agency which will be based at the offices of XL Recordings. Although the new venture will be wholly owned by Hunner, he will handle radio promotion on a number of key artists for XL, including new signing Jack Peñate.

Commenting on XL's relationship with Hunner's new venture, the label's MD Ben Beardsworth told CMU: "Brad is clearly a very successful plugger and he is great on the music and A&R side of the job. As well as running a brand new plugging company from our building, he'll be involved in the strategising of XL campaigns from a very early stage, offering a radio perspective from the moment we come in to contact with new artists. Adding Brad to the equation is just one of the ways that we are stepping things up in preparation for the key releases we have lined up for the first half of next year - the debut album by new signing, Jack Peñate, plus albums by three established artists who are set up for great success next year, Dizzee Rascal, MIA, and Devendra Banhart".

Brad adds: "I've always had a great respect for the creativity and success of XL. I'm looking forward to working with them on some very exciting projects in 2007".


Nokia has launched its new music download site which, as previously reported, will aim to distinguish itself from the competition by providing insider insights that help people navigate the huge catalogues that are available via digital music platforms. As part of its 'Music Recommender' system the phone maker has linked up a number of key independent record stores around the world, including London's Puregroove Records, New York's Fat Beats, Chicago's Reckless, Berlin's Hard Wax, Tokyo's Mona Records and Rio de Janeiro's Modern Sound, all of whom will provide registered users with recommendations regarding the great new music being ignored by pretty much every other digital music platform. Tracks bought via the mobile platform will cost 89p.

As also previously reported, another insider providing music recommendations will be David Bowie. Commenting on his involvement in the venture, he told reporters yesterday: "Waking up to a new sound or new band is something that makes my day just that bit more exciting. Unfortunately, so much music goes unheard, especially things that don't bow to the mainstream. Music Recommenders help navigate the undiscovered music that is out there".

Nokia's David Robertson, meanwhile, added: "We wanted a music service which offered music fans the chance to explore new music from all corners of the world that most of us would never normally get to hear. We've recruited the most knowledgeable people, from the best record shops around the world, whose day jobs are to listen to thousands of tracks every week and recommend the best".


More digital nonsense, and Channel 4 have announced they will be offering many of their programmes for download at 99p an episode. But don't get too excited about never having to buy a TV series DVD ever again. The downloads will only work for 2 days after you initially press play - after that you'd have to pay more money to watch again (or figure out how to hack the DRM on the files, whichever's easiest).

The download service will include the latest episodes of current series, like Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares and Hollyoaks, as well as archive programmes from the good old days when Channel 4 was good (well, good in the eyes of founding CEO Jeremy Isaacs anyway) - though obviously the service won't include much of the network's American output, over which it doesn't have such rights.


The people behind UMYX, the technology which allows fans to remix tracks on CD singles they buy, are launching a new venture in association with Apple and EMI which will enable people to remix the pop promo video for Moby's track 'New York, New York'. Bedroom producers will be able to submit their own video via a special website, as well as remixing the track itself using the standard UMYX software.

Commenting on the venture, UMYX co-founder Olly Barnes told CMU: "This is a really well thought out and creative promotion which really gets Moby fans interacting with his music. U-MYX is all about letting fans get inside the music and this new site lets them to make their own U-MYX of the single and their own unique video. It's a brilliant way of encouraging fan loyalty and building a community."


Nightclub company Luminar has announced it is close to selling its 'entertainment unit' to a third party in which it will maintain a minority stake. I'm not sure what the 'entertainment unit' includes (the whole company is kind of concerned with entertainment) though bosses at the firm announced earlier this year that they were interested in selling their Chicago Rock Café and Jumpin Jacks outlets in order to concentrate on their city-centre nightclub chains like Oceana, Liquid and Lava & Ignite, and I'm guessing this sale relates to that aim. Presumably it's a good decision, because Reuters reported that trading in the company's shares picked up yesterday after the announcement was made. Though that might have also been because the company confirmed they had appointed former Whitbread man Alan Jackson to take over as chairman when current top man Keith Hamill steps down in December.


Okay, she doesn't really. It's a statue of Shakira that weighs six tonnes, and it's been erected (okay, stop laughing at the back) in the Latin star's home town of Barranquilla in Colombia. The sculpture was unveiled on Wednesday, ahead of a benefit concert organised by the singer to raise money to build an arts school for 1,800 children affected by the civil war in her home country.

The singer told reporters: "Barranquilla is the big breast that fed and nurtured me as a human being, a woman and an artist. Returning is a chance to be with all the people from whom I learned and to pay homage to my roots."

The sculptor, Dieter Patt said: "It's a great day for the people of Barranquilla. I've never seen the city as moved or as happy as when the statue was unveiled."


According to The Mirror, Scissor Sister Jake Shears fancies Sugababe Heidi Range's boyfriend, Dave Berry. The band's Keisha Buchanan told the tabloid: "Jake keeps telling us how much he fancies Heidi's man. He says Dave's really cute and he talks about it all the time. I think Heidi's a bit worried!"

Keisha has also admitted to having had a bit of a thing for one Michael Jackson, before his face fell off. She says: "In the old days, before any of his weird plastic surgery, I really fancied him. I'm hoping to meet him at the World Music Awards but I swear if I see him, I'll pass out."


The Feeling's Dan Gillespie has apparently spoken to The Sun about being gay, and having a gay mother. The singer explained: "I was brought up on the gay scene because my mum is gay and so is my uncle. I've been going to Gay Pride marches since I was about four. We were a super right-on family. Not only did I have two lesbian mothers but my mum was in a wheelchair. We assumed the position of a kind of poster family for civil liberties organisations. There is a picture of me when I was six holding up a banner saying 'My mum's a lesbian and I love her.' It was at a Pride event and was used in a lot of newspapers."

On his own sexuality, he continued: "Most of the kids at school seemed to know I was gay a long time before I knew myself. I had a slightly effeminate air - and children are very intuitive aren't they? They spot things. It's obvious really." Hang on, his mum, his uncle, now him? Is it contagious?


Hurrah. Someone else saying uncomplimentary yet completely justified things about the Gallaghers. And I mean the Oasis boys, not the cast of Shameless. Speaking about that aforementioned VH1 top selling albums countdown, he said: "I think Oasis are slightly ridiculous characters. They've been grotesque for a while".

He added: "I take solace from the fact that the two biggest bands in the world, U2 and The Rolling Stones, are not in it".

I like that Alex James from Blur more all the time.

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