CMU Daily - on the inside Wednesday 31st January
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Santangelo dispute rumbles on
- Rootkit shambles rumbles on
- Independents critical of YouTube deal
- Madonna not blasphemous, say the Dutch
- Brandy facing civil lawsuit over car crash
- KT Tunstall helps launch global warming campaign
- Police reunite for Grammys
- BBC launches Glasto website
- Maiden, MCR, Linkin Park for Download
- Fields debut release confirmed
- Silicon Vultures debut single
- Elton, Snoop, Justin and Jay on Timbaland solo album
- 3 Unsigned competition reaches voting stage
- NXNE deadline today
- Bands design t-shirts for charity
- Cooper Temple Clause tour
- EMI benefiting from Jones album
- RadioCentre appoint new head of PR
- Telegraph's rivals dispute web claim
- Pete n Kate rehabilitate together
- Jermaine wants to give Jo a hand
- Hilton to sue


Oh, so busy this morning. So much news to report on, so many phone calls to answer, plus I had to spend an hour on the phone explaining to London Transport why their Oyster system is rubbish. Actually, the technology's quite clever, the blank faces of every tube staff member when the technology breaks is the rubbish bit. Guess who got stranded at Tottenham Court Road station with an empty Oyster card last night, even though London Transport had gladly taken ninety quid off me just last week and promised to charge it up? It's a good job that Little Barrie were so good at their album launch yesterday that my Oyster-card-anger was short lived, otherwise you'd have got a whole Top Bit of 'London Transport are shit' ranting - because it's a little known fact that CMU's editorial remit not only extends to news about the (if you think about it, totally unmusical) Paris Hilton, but also public transport news. We just don't exercise that remit very often. Except when the railway companies close the Reading train line on the weekend of the Reading Festival. Or London Transport fuck up on my Oyster card, and then deny any knowledge about it whatsoever.

Anyway, that's not the point, today's Top Bit is meant to be reminding you about the CMU recommended Breaking Ground event taking place on 23 Feb as the official after show all nighter to the Breakspoll awards. Taking over the seOne club at London Bridge, this is one of the biggest nights out in the breaks calendar, and this year's line up is looking excellent. The main room will feature all kinds of CMU favourites, like Atomic Hooligan, BLIM, Drumattic Twins, The Autobots, NAPT and Diverted DJs. In the second arena you will find the likes of General Midi, Dopamine, Merka, Neztic, Andrea Lai and Symmetrik. On top of all that, NSB Radio - the world's biggest breaks radio station I am told - will be streaming the main room's music live over the net. Tickets are available, for just a tenner, at, and you can get more press info type stuff from Leyline. Full info is at



As part of our overall worldwide musical and communications development we require a web editor. A rounded writing style of personality, authority and humour is paramount to ensure that the Domino label site continues to extend its ability to be a definitive reflection of the bands, its culture and the communities that look for news and updates on a daily basis and across the various time zones our offices now operate in. Please email salary details and CV to either or

WANTED: PROJECT MANAGER FOR EXCITING CHARITABLE INITIATIVE will this week unveil its RockCouture collection of designer electric guitars as part of its Born To Rock guitar exhibition at Harrods, London. Put together over the last eighteen months, and previously exhibited in Paris and the National Museum Of Ireland Dublin, this collection features over 30 one-off guitars designed by leading artists, musicians and designers, including Graham Coxon, Joseph Arthur, Hedi Slimane, Bono, Sir Peter Blake, Rankin, Jennifer Lopez, Anton Corbijn, Bryan Adams and Fred Deakin.

RockCouture is a charitable project - each creator has nominated a charity, and these exclusive guitars will be auctioned off in aid of those charities. The first auction dinner will take place, in Harrods, on 1 Mar as the finale to the Born To Rock exhibition. We are looking for a project manager with a real passion for music, and experience in charity work, to help coordinate this event - liaising with creators and charities, coordinating the sale of tickets to the dinner, and planning and overseeing the logistics of the event itself, in liaison with our auction partners and host venue.

The right person will be able to start immediately and work on a freelance basis in the run up to the event. There will be the opportunity for the right candidate to work on future RockCouture auctions. If you are interested, email a CV to

ADVERTISE YOUR JOBS here for just £50 a week, or £150 for two weeks in the Daily and four weeks on the web. Email for details



Now, I seem to remember some journalist, sometime, somewhere, referring to Nate James as "the James Blunt of R&B", or something like that. Which I think is a bit unfair, because I reckon he's not sold anywhere near that many records, for a start. Plus, given the nasty press that's so often been given to Mr Blunt, I'm not sure Mr James is really deserving of that sort of aggression. Particularly given his laid-back, funky, soulful sound. Anyway, I was alerted by an email which arrived about ten years ago, but which I only recently found in my junk mail folder, to the fact that Mr James released a new EP, 'Funkdefining', on Monday. You can preview it on the MySpace page, and whilst you're doing that, if it's your thing, you can look forward to James' second album, due in the spring.


When a sixteen year old tells you that the major record companies are "a cartel acting collusively in violation of the antitrust laws and public policy" and that their anti-P2P lawsuits amount to "extortionate threats... to force defendants to pay", you have to conclude that either the US education system is a lot better than ours, or those aren't really the sixteen year old's words. It's the latter, obviously.

Those are just some of the many allegations being made by the sixteen year old son of Patti Santangelo, who herself has long been the bane of the Recording Industry Association Of America's legal operations. As much previously reported, the Santangelo family have been part of the most high profile RIAA initiated anti-P2P lawsuit since 2005. Initially, the mother of the family, Patti, was accused of illegally sharing music via her family PC. But, in a high profile defence, she demonstrated pretty convincingly that she, herself, certainly had never shared content in the way the RIAA alleged. After a long legal fight, the RIAA eventually dropped their case against Patti at the end of last year.

Instead they turned their attention to her two children, Robert and Michelle, who, they said, were actually the people who had used P2P software to illegally share copyright music via the family's internet connection. But the two children claimed innocence as well, arguing that various family friends made use of the PC so, even if file sharing had taken place via that computer, it was impossible to say for certain who had done it. Despite that defence, the RIAA proceeded with their action, claiming daughter Michelle had admitted to file sharing, and that a friend of Robert's had said they had both shared music via P2P.

The industry association scored something of a success earlier this month when Michelle failed to lodge a response to the legal action against her, and the RIAA won by default, with the defendant ordered to pay $30,750 in damages. But they have foolishly continued their action against Robert, even though suing school age teenagers always brings with it a whole new level of PR challenges for the already often despised major record companies (Michelle is now 20, and a less controversial defendant). And yesterday he made it very clear that he does intend to fight the lawsuit.

He and his lawyer, Jordan Glass, yesterday issued a lengthy statement which cites 32 separate defences, demands a jury trial, and countersues over allegations the record industry have damaged the teenager's reputation, cost him large legal fees and, if nothing else, distracted him from his home work. Aside from continuing to deny he shared any music files, the defence also argues that, anyway, his sister owned all the tracks allegedly downloaded on CD already, and that at the time of the alleged file sharing, about five years ago, the record industry was not doing enough to warn people of the illegality of file sharing. The defence also alleges that the RIAA have "engaged in a wide-ranging conspiracy to defraud the courts of the United States". It's a long document, which has been published here:

For their side, the Recording Industry Association Of America remain confident that they have a good case against the youngest Santangelo, claiming all of his defences have been argued, unsuccessfully, in previous P2P cases. In a statement responding to Santangelo's defence, they said yesterday: "The record industry has suffered enormously due to piracy. That includes thousands of layoffs. We must protect our rights. Nothing in a filing full of recycled charges that have gone nowhere in the past changes that fact."


Though it might be near an end. Finally. SonyBMG reached yet another settlement yesterday in regards to the rootkit debacle of 2005, this time at a federal level.

As previously reported at length, the major record company faced litigation from all angles after it was revealed they had installed DRM systems onto a string of North American CD releases which secretly installed themselves onto music fans' computers, sharing information with the label, and potentially making those PCs more susceptible to virus attack.

Having already offered a refund and compensation package to affected customers, the major spent much of 2005 settling class action suits on behalf of those consumers in both the US and Canadian courts, and then at the end of the year were forced to settle separate action launched against them by the Attorney General of Texas, which led to action from Attorney Generals in the majority of US states, settlements of which will cost the major over $4 million.

But that didn't end action being taken against them by the Federal Trade Commission, who not only objected to the fact the DRM technology used by SonyBMG shared consumer information without permission and potentially affected PC security, but also that it restricted PC use of the album to Sony or Microsoft players.

The major's settlement with the FTC is very similar to that it reached with the State Attorney Generals last year. It will reimburse consumers who bought an affected CD $150, and replace the affected CD with a version without DRM installed.

Although agreeing to the settlement, SonyBMG has not admitted law violation through its use of the DRM. The FTC is due to decide whether the deal it has reached with the major should bring the case to a close after a thirty day public consultation period.

Needless to say, this whole thing has been hugely costly, in both financial and PR terms, for both SonyBMG, and the wider Sony Corp (most of the mainstream media continue to report the story by referring to the offending technology as 'Sony rootkit', even though it was developed by third party companies and, as I heard it, bought in by former BMG execs). Given that the use of the DRM was blatantly stupid on all sorts of levels, even before the potential virus threat was revealed, I do sometimes think major record companies should hire VPs Of Stupidity whose job it is to spot stupid decisions before they are made. Actually, I think I'd be quite good at that job. CV available on request.


According to Billboard, key players in the independent label community are getting ready for a fight with YouTube as the licensing deal reportedly being offered to indies by the video sharing website falls somewhat short of that being offered to Warner Music, Universal Music and SonyBMG, who reportedly each received equity in YouTube as part of their licensing arrangements.

The trade magazine quotes one source from an "influential British indie" as saying: "People are getting very pissed off about YouTube's attitude. It's either sign [the contract] or suck it, and we know it's not the same deal that the majors have been offered. There's definitely a groundswell that we need to take action".

Meanwhile Simon Wheeler, Head Of Digital for London based Beggars Group has gone on record on the issue, telling Billboard: "We fully expect to be compensated fairly and on par with the larger companies, we will not accept second rate terms because we are smaller companies. If we have to take legal measures to protect our rights we will do so. If anyone uses our copyrights without a license, we as Beggars, and the independent sector as a whole, take it extremely seriously".

Despite some rumours that the indies were already issuing cease and desist letters against YouTube, it seems unlikely that such letters have been sent, or will be sent in the short term. The independents will most likely look to the newly created independent digital rights negotiation organisation Merlin to use its collective bargaining power to force YouTube into offering a similar deal to that given to the major record companies. But, with that new organisation only launched at MIDEM last week, it will be a few months before it will seriously consider going legal with any unlicensed content providers.

Alison Wenham of the Worldwide Independent Network, which created Merlin, says negotiations with the likes of YouTube are "in process" while adding: "Merlin is not at the stage where talks could break down. The reality is that it won't start to be properly operational until about June".

YouTube, meanwhile, tried to play down reports of looming conflict between itself and the independent sector, telling Billboard: "YouTube enjoys working with all content creators, including record labels small and large. Partnerships with content creators and the community are crucial to our success, and in the coming months, we look forward to continuing to help our partners monetize the content they create".


I can't say I was aware Dutch prosecutors were still considering whether to charge Madonna with blasphemy in relation to that much talked about mock crucifixion that featured in the singer's 2006 tour. But apparently they were, mainly because the country's Christian political party the SGP asked them to. But the good news, for Madonna at least, is that they have considered it, and decided not to press charges because the cross bit of the Confessions tour was open "to different interpretations".

A spokesman for the Dutch prosecutors told reporters: "Through her show, the singer tried to express her frustrations about certain situations in the world. It is not a question of contempt for God. Furthermore, Madonna did not discredit Christians as a group".

The SGP may, as yet, appeal against that decision.


More on the Brandy car crash story. As you'll remember, US pop star Brandy is accused of causing a crash that led to the death of one Awatef Aboudihaj towards the end of last year. She is waiting to hear whether she will be charged with vehicular manslaughter over the incident, which could lead to jail time, but that might be the least of her worries. Aboudihaj's family have launched wrongful-death proceedings against the singer, and are suing for $50 million, claiming that she was driving recklessly at the time of the crash. Brandy's people are yet to comment.


KT Tunstall has joined forces with Hollywood type Josh Hartnett in helping to launch a ten-year campaign by environment charity Global Cool. The previously reported organisation plans to tackle the issue of global warming with an initiative which will try to persuade a billion people to each reduce their carbon emissions by a tonne a year, in order to prevent the climate from becoming irreversibly unstable, therefore buying time to develop clean, renewable energy sources. Campaigners say that people can reduce their carbon footprint significantly by, for example, using low energy light bulbs, not leaving chargers plugged in, and turning TVs off completely instead of leaving them on standby.

Speaking at the campaign's launch at the British Museum, Tunstall said: "If you left your house and your neighbour called you and said 'your oven is on' you wouldn't stay at work you would go home and switch it off. That for me is a simple analogy. It's amazing how many people I'm speaking to, and the word is not out there, it's amazing that no one knows."

She continued: "The amount of carbon emissions used by a successful music artist is really considerable. But responsibility is spreading."

Hartnett added: "The change in temperature is dramatic. You can call it a fluke but it's been consistent. You see the effects every day. You start to wonder 'what can I do about it?' But you can unplug your telephone, unplug your TV, don't leave your TV on standby. You can reduce your carbon emissions by about two tonnes a year. I was amazed at how easy it is. Over here, everyone is aligned and knows we have to make a change. In the US, there's a president who thinks there's no problem".


As per recent, previously reported speculation, The Police are set to reunite for a performance at the 2007 Grammy Awards next month. Sting, Stewart Copeland, and Andy Summers, who last performed together in 2003 at their induction to the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame, will be the opening act at the ceremony in LA on 11 Feb.

Elsewhere in Grammy news, Canadian nominee Michael Buble has said he's boycotting the event because his category will be presented at dinner, not during the live broadcast, and he thinks that sucks.
The singer told The Canadian Press: "They give away our best traditional pop award at a dinner before the Grammys, so I just think that's bullshit. I think it's absolute crap. Our category is now selling way too many records to be given away at a dinner before, so I'm just not going to show up".

The scheduling of his award might not be the only reason Buble won't be attending though. His album 'Caught In The Act' is up against work from the likes of Bette Midler, Smokey Robinson and his idol Tony Bennett, and he reckons he doesn't have a chance of winning. The singer, who appears on the aforementioned Bennett's nominated LP 'Duets: An American Classic', added "Why should I go to the Grammys? Because I'll lose... They might as well have already scratched Tony Bennett's name into the damn thing. I'm not going. I'm on that record that I'm going to lose to, and it'll be the second year in a row that I've lost. I'm not going to go."


The BBC has created a new website which will help music fans through the process of buying a ticket for this year's Glastonbury Festival. Well, it's not just that. There's news and competitions and stuff too, but there is a page dedicated to the ticket thing. It has, admittedly, become increasingly complicated to buy a ticket, due to the measures being taken to flout the ticket touts. As previously reported, anyone looking to get in this year is required to pre-register next month and submit a passport photo. They then receive a registration number, which they'll need in order to buy a ticket when they become available on 1 Apr.

Organiser Michael Eavis says of the new process: "It's a much fairer system. The people who buy the tickets on 1 April will be the people who are actually coming to the festival."



Iron Maiden, My Chemical Romance and Linkin Park have been confirmed as headliners for this year's Download Festival, taking place from 8-10 June at Donington Park. MCR headline Friday, Linkin Park Saturday and Iron Maiden on Sunday.

My Chemical Romance's guitarist Frank Lero says: "Being asked to headline Download Festival was definitely a milestone in our lives... Just two years ago we were playing the side stage... And now we're closing the main stage! A slot previously filled by Metallica, Guns N Roses and even Black Sabbath. These are legendary bands... So how do I describe that feeling? There really are no words to describe that honour. I just can't wait to play".

Linkin Park's Chester Bennington says: "We're really excited to perform new music for all of our UK fans as well as the old favourites you know and love. Download is always awesome and the bands this year are going to be amazing".

Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson says: "Our fans know that Donington is a special place for Maiden [having headlined Monsters Of Rock there three times] and we are all looking forward to getting back there for a fourth time".

Tickets went on sale this morning at 9am. Today is my birthday, by the way. How many of you remembered? At the last count, two. You know who you are. Thanks.


Fields have confirmed that their debut album 'Everything Last Winter' will be released via Black Lab Records on 2 Apr, preceded by a single, 'Charming The Flames' on 26 Mar. The tracklisting, for those of you who keep such things in a scrapbook, is as follows:

Song For The Fields
Charming The Flames
You Don't Need This Song (To Fix Your Broken Heart)
The Death
You Brought This On Yourself
Skulls And Flesh And More
If You Fail, We All Fail


Silicon Vultures' debut single release 'Sour Tits' is currently available as a free download, and if the name of that track isn't enticing, I don't know what is. The band have also announced that they'll release a 7" vinyl-only 5-track single on 23 Apr via Captains Of Industry. Not sure what that's called, to be honest, but you can preorder it from from 2 Apr.

The band have some dates coming up, so here they are:

6 Mar: Boiler Room, Guilford
9 Mar: DJ set @ Prison Sex, Kettering
6 Apr: 1 In 12 Club, Bradford
13 Apr: DJ set @ Prison Sex, Kettering
20 Apr: Splash Club @ Catch, London
26 Apr: Captains Of Industry party @ The Barfly, Camden


Details of Timbaland's upcoming solo album have emerged, and, as you might expect, it's studded with starry collaborations. Amongst the artists making a guest appearance are the likes of Elton John, Snoop Dogg, Justin Timberlake, and Jay Z. The long player, 'Shock Value', is out on 26 Mar, and also boasts contributions from The Hives, Fall Out Boy and MIA. The first single release 'Give It To Me' is a collaboration with Nelly Furtado.


Well, serves me right for rambling on about whether brand organised battle of the band competitions are brilliant initiatives supporting grass roots music, or unimaginative cheap marketing exercises. But after singing the praises (kind of) of O2's unsigned band competition yesterday, their competitors 3 are keen for me to sign the praises of their unsigned band competition. Obviously, as I said yesterday, I have to assess each battle of the bands scheme on its own merits, put the pros against the cons, and make an informed, rationale decision as to whether we should be supporting it. Oh, hang on, my mate Marsha from Xfm is on the judging panel of this one. I love it.

We've already reported on the 3 First Cut Awards, but voting will begin next week, which is why its time to talk about it again. Over 1900 demos were submitted, apparently, and those have been reduced down by judges, like the aforementioned Marsha, to just 21. Those bands will now play at various showcase events at colleges around the country, with a final three being selected partly by public vote, and partly by the judges (the public will pick one, the judges two). Those three will then support the Rumble Strips at various Barfly gigs, before a final at ULU where an overall winner will be chosen. They will win stuff. Yes, that's right, stuff. Good stuff too, though I've just accidentally deleted that bit of the press release so I'm not sure exactly what.

Anyway, here's what the aforementioned Marsha has to say about all this: "I was incredibly impressed with the high standard of entries for the 3 First Cut Awards - having to whittle them down was like pulling teeth, and a little heart-breaking at times! Amongst the finalists, there are several who I'm convinced will go on to super-stardom. It's very exciting to have been able to hear them so early on. Now I can't wait for the final!"

More info on all this, and music from the finalists, is online at Voting begins on 12 Feb.


The 31 Jan isn't just Caro's birthday, though obviously, that's the most important thing of note about it. And don't go saying that the fact that it's Justin Timberlake's birthday is more important, because you're just going to get laughed at for making such a suggestion. But another thing of note about 31 Jan is that it's the deadline for submissions for North By North East, the previously reported Canadian music festival that works on a similar line to America's SXSW. So if you want to submit, you better get your skates on. Details and online submission is at


The likes of Joseph Arthur, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, King Creosote, Devendra Banhart and Rilo Kiley are amongst the artists who have designed T-Shirts which are set to benefit charities ranging from the Teenage Cancer Trust to the Elliot Smith Memorial Fund.

It's a project organised by Yellow Bird, a Montreal based initiative which arranged for the musicians to create the designs, and will donate one hundred percent of the profits to charities nominated by the artists involved. See for info and pics of the T-shirts.


The Cooper Temple Clause are set for a spring tour. Here are the dates:

21 Mar: Cork Cyprus Avenue
23 Mar: Dublin Whelans
24 Mar: Belfast Speakeasy
25 Mar: Glasgow QMU
26 Mar: Aberdeen Lemon Tree
27 Mar: Newcastle Northumbria University
29 Mar: Manchester Academy 2
30 Mar: Birmingham Irish Centre
31 Mar: Leeds Met University
2 Apr: Norwich Waterfront
3 Apr: Bristol Academy
4 Apr: Portsmouth Pyramid Centre
5 Apr: London Shepherds Bush Empire


Hey, some good news for EMI, in among all their profit warnings, high level sackings and cost cutting, the new album from EMI signed Norah Jones is the most pre-ordered album ever on Amazon US. It is also topping a number of iTunes charts around the world. All of which should help fill some holes in the major's balance sheet. Hurrah for Norah. Though don't expect that to stop the impending downsize - she's not that popular.


Commercial radio body RadioCentre has appointed a new head of PR - Jill Drew - who was previously head of PR at royalties body PPL. She'll be responsible for PRing all RadioCentre activity. Which will mean, should PPL and commercial radio have a copyright dispute at any point, lots of briefing against her former employer. Which would be fun. Anyway, here's what RadioCentre External Affairs chief Lisa Kerr had to say about Jill's appointment: "I'm delighted to have Jill on board. Through her previous role at PPL, she has a strong understanding of our organisation and her experience makes her the ideal candidate to manage media relations for all RadioCentre activities.

Drew said: "I'm really looking forward to the new challenge. Radio is a fantastic medium and commercial radio in particular has an exciting future with many opportunities ahead in an evolving media landscape".


Seems I'm not the only one to have remarked "surely not" on first seeing the Telegraph's recent online ad campaign, which has the slogan "Britain's number one quality newspaper website". The Guardian claim that industry recognised stats prove both they and The Times get more hits than the Telegraph who is, after all, a relative newcomer to the digital domain. Here's what the Guardian writes: "Further proof of the falsity of the Telegraph claim [comes] from an independent pollster, Nielsen NetRatings. It reports that, in December 2006, the unique audience for Guardian Unlimited was 2,125,000; while Times Online recorded 1,587,00 and managed just 1,007,000. It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "number one", does it not?" The Advertising Standards Authority is reportedly investigating the ad campaign. We'll let you know what they conclude - here in Britain's number one quality music news service.


Pete Doherty has apparently taken Kate Moss with him to his latest stay in rehab. The are-they-aren't-they couple both recently checked in (using pseudonyms) to the Capio Nightingale Hospital in London, according to reports.

Which sounds like a good plan. Or, possibly not.


Jermaine Jackson has offered to help fellow Celebrity Big Brother contestant (and alleged shocking racist) Jo O'Meara relaunch her career by giving her one of his own songs.

Speaking to IRN radio news, Jackson said of the former S Clubber: "I thought that Jo is a very, very wonderful talent and there's a bit of confusion that's trapped inside of her. She needs to step out of her shell. She's young, she's beautiful, she looks great on camera. She can sing. I was most impressed by Jo because of her musical talent. But she needs to take off those shackles, those handcuffs. I told her that I have a song that I wanted to present to her. I'm going to do it."


Tedious waste of space Paris Hilton is suing to close down the ParisExposed website which, as previously reported, has published personal photographs, videos, diaries, and business contracts gathered from items auctioned off by the owners of a storage company who were storing some of Hilton's possessions, and who claimed that the celebrity failed to pay her bills. The rumour mill suggests that Paris is claiming that the bills weren't hers to pay, in fact, but that a removal company who dealt with the items was responsible.

Through her lawyers, Hilton says: "This action seeks to enjoin perhaps one of the most single egregious and reprehensible invasions of privacy ever committed against an individual. I was appalled to learn that people are exploiting my and my sisters' [sic - she's only got one] private personal belongings for commercial gain."

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