CMU Daily - on the inside Wednesday 20th February
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- ERA predict 50% increase in download sales this year
- TVT chief admits Chapter 11 application this week
- Grooverider gets four years over Dubai drugs charge
- Want to invest in Sparks or Hersh?
- Recent Bobby Brown court case progresses
- K-Fed and Britney stuff
- Santiago scores Nike docu
- LCD Soundsystem do track for movie
- Annie Lennox campaigning for AIDS relief
- Eminem to publish memoir
- Sharon and Ozzy on Mills ahead of Macca's Brit win
- Winehouse probably will make Brits
- Massive music collection for sale
- Oasis top best British albums poll
- Spice Girls would reform for Mandela
- Bryan Adams elevenses
- John and Jehn dates
- 3 Inches Of Blood dates
- Klaxons dates next week
- Album Review: The Orb - The Dream
- DVD hacker launches new music file conversion tool
- iPod shuffle price shuffles down
- Warner partner with Russian indie
- BBC to make shows available via iTunes
- Pink split
- Agent Provocateur drop Lily already
- Reverend takes shots at Lewis and new rave
- Hucknall on slimy Cowell and the X-Factor problem


As you know, the Association Of Independent Music recently launched a brand new 'e-guide' to all things to do with Synchronisation Licensing - ie the licensing of music by labels for use in adverts, games, films, TV shows or other such what not. It's an increasingly important part of the music industry, of course - with AIM reckoning that the licensing of music to TV and film alone generate £25 million of revenues for the record labels. And that's before you consider the role synchronisation has had in recent years in launching new talent into the mainstream, especially indie talent. The guide offers anyone in music - label owner, song publisher, artist manager, independent artist - all the essential info on the synchronisation licensing business plus a directory of over 100 key contacts.

The e-guide is free to AIM members, and it's available to everyone else for £40 via this link: However, we here at CMU have five copies to give away to Daily readers - one each day this week. Each day we are asking a sync related question, and the first person out of the hat with the right answer gets a free copy. And well done to Ben from Plastic Records who wins a guide for correctly identifying that it was Moby's 1999 album 'Play' from which every single song was synched to at least one advert, film, TV programme or game.

Here is today's question. To enter all you have to do is email the answer to this question to [email protected] by 4pm today - we'll pick out a winner and tell you the answer tomorrow. Easy.

QUESTION: Which Wall Of Sound released Les Rythmes Digitales track reached a whole new audience when it was used on the hugely popular robot-car-dancing Citroen C4 advert in 2005?

Email your answer to [email protected] by 4pm today to be in with a chance of winning the e-guide.



Live Nation is looking for a Digital Marketing intern to assist the Digital Marketing Manager in the promotion of all of Live Nation's tours and festivals including O2 Wireless Festival, Download Festival and Hard Rock Calling. This post will look to start late March/early April 2008 for around 9 months.

We're looking for someone with a real interest in the digital arena who knows their way around MySpace, Facebook and Bebo etc and keen to learn about online PR and marketing. You'll be taking direction from the Digital Marketing Manager, helping to maximise as much online coverage and exposure as possible.

We're looking for a team player with a passion for music and all things digital, with great organisational and communication skills and attention to detail. This role has the possibility to lead to further opportunities at the end of the placement period.

Please send cv and covering letter to [email protected] Only successful applicants will be contacted. Closing date for applications is Friday 29 Feb 08.



Freddie from Enjoy Destroy on his band's creative process: "Most of the songs are usually born on the bedroom floor with an acoustic guitar. They then pass through a rigorous tweaking process in the band practice room until finally all of the creative aspects are laid to rest in the studio".

Freddie answers CMU's Same Six Questions online this week -



The next CMU recommended Remix All-Nighter takes over the seOne Club at London Bridge next month for a brilliant pre-Easter party.

There'll be three rooms of fun. In the Remix room you'll get live sets from The Whip and Vitalic, plus Remix chief Eddy TM on the decks and VJ Fay Buzzard doing visual stuff. Next up will be a room hosted by Orbital co-founder and general dance music pioneer Phil Hartnoll, named for and showcasing his new venture Long Range. And then, to top off all that, there will be a whole room of all things Ninja Tune, featuring no less than DJ Food & DK, Coldcut (Jon Moore DJ Set), Bonobo, Daedelus, The Qemists and VJ Mox. Oh, and they've just added Busy P (Ed Banger) to the bill too. This night is going to be storming.

It all takes place on 20 Mar. Full info from:

CMU and Remix All-nighter promoters Leyline have teamed up to offer students a special price for the night of just £7. To get the discount you need a special code for when you order your tickets, and you can get the code by emailing your name and university name to [email protected] But do it quick - there are a limited number of discounted tickets available.


British consumers will spend up to £160 million on digital downloads this year, which is up about 50% on last year. I know this because ERA Digital, the new digital bit of the Entertainment Retailers Association, has just said so. Although single track downloads remain popular and will account for well over half that figure, ERA reckon the growth in full album downloads that will have an especially important role in generating those record digital revenues. The arrival of high profile new download stores like those being planned by and Amazon, all of which are sure to be accompanied by considerable marketing spend, will also aid the legit download boom.

ERA Digital chairman Russel Coultart told reporters yesterday: "The big question is the extent to which new players in the market will drive overall market size. It is certainly the case that 2008 will see a lot more marketing activity to the consumer. If all goes as expected, the total market could easily exceed £160 million, up 50% on 2007".

The overall Director General of ERA, Kim Bayley, was generally upbeat about 2008, predicting that record digital sales would be accompanied by good physical product sales on the high street - in music CDs as well as other entertainment products: "Games and DVD continue to be the star performers for entertainment retailers, but our members are optimistic that a stronger product line-up from record companies in 2008 will produce good news for music sales".

Elsewhere, a new report from Forrester Research predicts that digital music sales will surpass CD sales within five years. Following a survey of 5000 customers in the US and Canada, the Forrester study has predicted that digital sales will grow on average 23% each year meaning annual download sales by 2012 will be $4.8 billion. CD sales will continue to decline, meanwhile, so that by 2012 they generate $3.8 billion.

Despite ERA's optimistic outlook for music sales in the UK this year, Forrester reckons that on a global level digital growth won't fully compensate for the decline in physical release sales, even by 2012, meaning overall the record industry will be worse off, despite the digital boom.

Other interesting stats and predictions from the Forrester survey include the following...

- The average consumer only uses just over half of the capacity of their MP3 player - suggesting those ever increasing memory sizes on digital music players are not really required.

- Digital rights management free music will become the norm on all major download stores this year - including iTunes (whose DRM-free catalogue is currently limited to EMI and indies), and social networking download facilities will grow in importance, with people recommending music to buy off their social networking pages.

- Subscription based download platforms like Napster will see some modest growth in the coming years, but free ad-funded download platforms will never really take off because they rely on restrictive DRM technology that limits play and distribution - just as DRM-free music becomes the norm in the a-la-carte download space.


TVT Records chief Steve Gottlieb yesterday confirmed those reports that his company was about to apply for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, though in an interview with Billboard he insisted: "This is not the end of TVT".

As reported yesterday, many of the independent label's staff have been made redundant, and it was confirmed yesterday all non-US operations were being closed down completely. The only exception is the TVT music publishing company which, while also undergoing some cost cutting, is seemingly operating as usual.

Insiders say the indie will proceed with its release schedule despite the Chapter 11 application, with a long awaited album from Lil Jon and new music from the Ying Yang Twins both on the release schedule. However, others say some TVT artists will probably use the bankruptcy proceedings to try and get out of their contracts and look for deals elsewhere.

Gottlieb seems to be keen to use the Chapter 11 protection to restructure his company, possibly selling off his distribution assets to bolster the recorded music business. quote him thus: "I believe that we will emerge from this reorganisation a stronger entity. Our history of innovative marketing, creative branding and artist discovery are as much in demand today as ever before. The downturn in the music business has affected all of us, independents and majors alike. We all seek to adapt to a new business model".


Radio 1 DJ and drum & bass head Grooverider has been jailed for four years in Dubai after being caught taking cannabis into the country when heading there for a DJ set last November. The DJ, real name Raymond Bingham, had 2.16g of the drug on his person when he was searched by customs entering the UAE city on 23 Nov last year.

Bingham says he had forgotten the drug was in his pocket when flying into Dubai, and that he hadn't intended to take it with him into the city. Prior to his sentencing the DJ called the charges against him "ridiculous", adding: "It was a small amount. Back home I would not even get prosecuted".

Bingham has not been presenting his drum & bass show on Radio 1 since the charges were filed against him last November, and the show is currently being solely credited to his former co-presenter Fabio. A spokesman for the station said yesterday: "Grooverider has paid a very high price for a serious mistake".

Many in the West will be surprised by the severity of the sentence for a small time possession charge, but four years jail time is common for people caught taking drugs into the United Arab Emirates, and the promoter of the gig where Bingham was due to play in November told reporters last year he had made the DJ aware of this fact.

Grooverider now has two weeks to appeal the sentence. And there may be other routes for the DJ's people to try and get their man out of jail sooner. As previously reported, in 2006 Grammy award winning music producer Dallas Austin was prosecuted for taking cocaine into Dubai, and also faced four years inside, but he was pardoned by the emirate's Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.


Former L7 front woman Donita Sparks and former Throwing Muses front woman Kristen Hersh are both involved in a new online venture which aims to enable fans to take over one of the key roles of a record company - investment.

Through CASH music fans will be able to invest in various artists' current projects, from $75 to $5000, in return for perks like a totally exclusive fan t-shirt, a visit to the studio while an artist is recording, and even an 'executive producer' credit on an artist's album. I'm not sure if investing fans also see their money back from any revenues generated by those projects - though from what I can see any recordings generated will be distributed for free on the net, so there may not be so many revenues, though Sparks implies the music will be licensed which would presumably generate income for someone.

Anyway, the concept is introduced at with more details on how it will all work promised shortly. Meanwhile, Sparks says this: "We're just going to go for it along with the public. You see one of the things that a traditional record label does is invest in the artist by putting up money on the front end for recording, promotion etc. in the hopes of making it all back (and then some) on the back end. Well there is nothing traditional about me or CASH Music, but we do know that music licensing is one of the remaining lucrative aspects of the music business for artists (and stakeholders). I'm curious to see how this thing will pan out and I'll definitely keep you posted on my mad experiment".


A clerk magistrate in Brockton, Massachusetts is presently considering whether Bobby Brown should end up in court or not over that incident back in December when the singer was discovered in possession of cocaine after police were called to a disturbance at a Holiday Inn. Brown was present at Brockton's district court for a private hearing to determine what charges, if any, he should face in relation to the incident, which defence lawyer Jeffrey Denner played down, saying that he only had "very small amounts of cocaine residue". Though I don't really see why that should make it any better, it only proves that he was originally in possession of a larger amount of cocaine. Anyway, a ruling is expected to be handed down in nine days time.


Kevin Federline's lawyer Mark Vincent Kaplan has said that his client doesn't want to stop ex-wife Britney Spears from seeing their children, presumably in a damage limitation exercise regarding public perceptions of his and K-Fed's ruthlessness. As previously reported, Kaplan's publicist Michael Sands recently quit because he felt the pair were being needlessly cruel to Britney, and is now working with her sometime manager Sam Lutfi saying that they are going to clean up Britney's image.

Poor Britney hasn't seen her two sons, Sean Preston and Jayden James, for two months now, and it's said that Federline would be happy for a visit to occur if Spears' parents were present throughout. Kaplan says: "It has always been, and it is now and will continue to be, his desire for the children to have their mother in their life under whatever conditions are reasonable, based on progress".

Meanwhile, a further custody hearing was held this week and the judge, Superior Court Commissioner Scott Gordon, refused a request by Britney's attorney Anne Kiley to issue a gag order with regard to the case which would prohibit attorneys from discussing the case publicly, and prevent the dates and times of court appointments being published. Kiley argued that the ongoing media coverage would prove injurious to Spears' emotional and physical wellbeing, but the aforementioned Kaplan observed that a gag order won't stop the paparazzi from hounding her, and he's probably right.


Former Pixie Joey Santiago has written the score for a new soccer documentary sponsored by Nike. It's not the first time he's done soundtrack type stuff, having provided music for a number of TV shows. A source told Pitchfork: "This film is about guts and determination and Joey's work definitely helps surface both of these qualities".

'Nike Presents: Blood, Sweat And Tears: Football In The Rough' will appear on this month.


Elsewhere in the world of film related music, LCD Soundsystem have recorded a new track for upcoming movie release '21' starring Kevin Spacey and Laurence Fishburne. 'Big Ideas' will feature on the film's soundtrack, out on 21 Mar.


You may remember that Annie Lennox recorded a song, 'SING', back in Dec 06 (I remember because we reported on it) and invited 23 other singing lady-stars to appear on it, in order to draw attention to the HIV AIDS pandemic, and raise money to be donated to TAC - Treatment Action Campaign - which was founded in South Africa in 1998.

Well, now the Sing campaign is set to continue, with an exclusive media event at the Frontline Club in London on 7 Mar, at which she'll talk about her work with TAC and discuss the AIDS situation in South Africa. The Body Shop, meanwhile, is set to sell and distribute a special edition of the track - it's the first time the Body Shop has ever sold music. Plus footage of TAC's work will be broadcast as part of the BBC's Sport Relief broadcast.



Eminem is set to publish what's described as a visual and written memoir, entitled 'The Way I Am', and featuring previously unseen photos, hand drawn pictures, lyrical sketches and entries from journals. The rap star will write an introduction and a present day narrative for the book.

Ian Preece, a senior commissioning editor at Orion Publishing Group, says the book will show Marshall Mathers as he really is, and not how the public perceive him. He says: "Because of where he is from, people think they know where he is at, what kind of person he really is. This book cuts through all that and gets to the source".

It's scheduled to be out on 16 Oct.


So, it's the Brits tonight, and Paul McCartney is due to play the finale set after receiving his Lifetime Achievement gong off Kylie. Presumably estranged soon to be ex-wife Heather Mills hasn't been invited, though if she did show up, Brits 2008 host Sharon Osbourne has said she'd know what to do - "I would boot her off" she told reporters yesterday, "I think she's a miserable old cow".

Ozzy, though, says he wouldn't be so keen witnessing such an awkward moment: "I really don't want to be there if Heather shows up. Never mind McCartney having a go - I think the audience will string her up. Sharon and I have met them both on a few occasions but if Paul doesn't know her, I'm fucked if I do. She's fuckin nuts".

Brit bosses aren't especially bothered about Macca's ongoing divorce proceedings causing any problems during this year's awards - though insiders admit there is some nervousness as to what Ozzy will get up to during the live broadcast on ITV - they want him to be unpredictable to give the awards show that edge that is often lacking, but they don't want him to go too far. The thirty second delay could come in useful.


More Brits, and Amy Winehouse is now expected to appear at the awards show. Brit Awards chairman and SonyBMG chief Ged Doherty told Sky News yesterday: "I heard her rehearse last night and she sounded absolutely great. We are just thrilled to have her appearing at the ceremony. At times it has been a difficult year for Amy but what has never been in doubt is that she is a real talent". As previously reported, there has been much speculation as to whether Winehouse would be well enough to make the awards show, though since her by satellite Grammy performance it has been more likely than not that she would make it.


Possibly the biggest music collection in the world is up for sale on eBay. Paul Mawhinney's set of more than three million records and three hundred thousand CDs has an estimated value of fifty million dollars, but bidding has begun on the auction site for just three million dollars. According to reports, if you were to listen to every song back to back, it would take you 57 years to get through it all.

Mawhinney cites "declining health" and "associated financial concerns" as the reasons for selling, but doesn't want to sell it to just anyone. He wants the buyer to be someone who "will guarantee to keep the collection intact (other than to sell duplicate copies, if so desired) and to keep the music alive for the enjoyment and music lovers, now and for years to come".


Q magazine and HMV have announced the results of their latest best British albums ever poll and, erm, I'm going to let you make your own judgement. Oasis at number one and two? Two Keane entries in the top twenty? Yes, that's right, the best British albums ever. Here's the top twenty.

1. Oasis - Definitely Maybe
2. Oasis - (What's The Story) Morning Glory?
3. Radiohead - Ok Computer
4. The Beatles - Revolver
5. The Stone Roses - The Stone Roses
6. The Beatles - Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band,
7. The Clash - London Calling
8. Keane - Under The Iron Sea
9. Pink Floyd - Dark Side Of The Moon
10. The Verve - Urban Hymns
11. Radiohead - The Bends
12. Beatles - Abbey Road
13. Keane - Hopes And Fears
14. Oasis - Don't Believe The Truth
15. Depeche Mode - Violator
16. The Smiths - The Queen Is Dead
17. Queen - A Night At The Opera
18. Arctic Monkeys - Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
19. The Beatles - The Beatles
20. Sex Pistols - Never Mind The Bollocks...Here's The Sex Pistols

The full list is in the current Q.


Despite a recent assertion by Geri Halliwell that the Spice Girls wouldn't reform once their current tour ends, the band have said that they'd love to perform at the 90th birthday celebration for Nelson Mandela set to take place in Hyde Park on 27 Jun, if they're asked to do so.

Mel C says: "We're great friends of Mr Mandela and we would love to perform for him again".

Geri Halliwell added: "We were privileged enough to meet the man and he is just amazing. He's just an example of strength and humility and if we could be part of that, celebrating his life - wow".


Yeah, lots of 11s here. Bryan Adams will promote his eleventh album '11' by playing 11 gigs in 11 countries on 11 consecutive days. Dates as follows...

7 Mar: Lisbon Maxime
8 Mar: Barcelona Espacio Movistar
9 Mar: Milan Theatre Metropol
10 Mar: Hamburg St Pauli Theatre
11 Mar: London St James Church
12 Mar: Paris Reservoir
13 Mar: Amsterdam De Koepelkerk
14 Mar: Brussels Vaudeville
15 Mar: Zurich Kaufletien Festaal
16 Mar: Vienna Birdland
17 Mar: Copenhagen Pakhus


French boyfriend/girlfriend duo John and Jehn have announced a series of London live dates, around the release of their eponymous debut on 21 Apr. Here are the dates:

27 Feb: Corsica Studio, London (with Little Sparta)
8 Mar: Notting Hill Arts Club, London
14 Mar: Monto Water Rats, London (Drowned in Sound night)
23 Apr: The Luminaire, London (album launch)
26 Apr: The George Tavern, London

And here's their MySpace:


Canadian metallers 3 Inches Of Blood have announced that they'll play two headline dates following their appearance on Metal Hammer's Defenders Of The Faith Tour. They'll appear at The Furnace in Swindon on 27 Apr and at the Freebutt in Brighton on 28 Apr. Tickets are on sale now.


Klaxons have announced two low-key gigs for next week. They appear at Oxford Academy on 25 Feb, and at Portsmouth's Wedgewood Rooms on 16 Feb. They are, of course, appearing at the Brits tonight too.


ALBUM REVIEW: The Orb - The Dream (Liquid Sound)
Back in 1992 The Orb were the absolute business, whether it was producing brilliance for Primal Scream, remixing everyone from Mike Oldfield to the KLF or just pioneering a whole new genre in ambient house with their seminal 'Ultraworld' and 'UFOrb' albums. Then Thrash left and things went a bit, er, Orb shaped, with too many albums full of sludgy meandering that just didn't cut it when it came to memorable tunes. However, in recent years, freed from the commercial shackles of a major label, The Orb have been turning in some of their best stuff in ages, and 'The Dream' continues this timely resurgence. It's full of the quirky samples, spacey ambience and massive rumbling basslines you'd want from an Orb album, but there's also a more live band feel about things occasionally. Single 'Vuja De' is perhaps the most overtly pop thing they've done since 'Toxygene' but it's also one of the best, built on the sweet vocals of Aki Omori and an old skool riff that bears an uncanny resemblance to 808 State's 'In Yer Face'. Elsewhere Juliet Roberts adds equally soulful contributions to 'A Beautiful Day' (which is classic Orb, really) and 'The Truth Is...', whilst there's also guest vocals from The Corpral; 'Mother Nature' and 'Lost & Found' mine the world of reggae and are both miles away from the electronica elsewhere on 'The Dream', the former a slice of ragga with cascading ethnic strings, the latter a hot slab of skanking echoey dub. MS
Release date: 25 Feb
Press contact: Bang On [all]


A San Francisco company run by Jon Lech Johansen, the techie guy known for hacking digital rights management technology, most notable the encryption codes that limit what countries DVDs will play in, has launched a new bit of software which converts music (and other digital) files so that they will play on any digital music player - ie so encrypted AAC files bought from iTunes can be converted to play on devices other than the iPod.

Such technology has been about before, of course, most notably Real's Harmony system, though Johansen's DoubleTwist is meant to be very easy to use, and will also convert music files for use on mobile phones and games consoles. Whether Apple will now alter its DRM to stop DoubleTwist from being able to convert their AAC files, as they did with Harmony, remains to be seen.

Such conversion systems will become less relevant in the music space, of course, as more and more labels and download stores start selling MP3s. And of course you can always do the 'burn to CD and re-rip as MP3' thing that has always rendered all DRMs useless.


Apple have announced new prices for its iPod Shuffle in the UK - meaning a basic shuffle will now cost just £32 while the 2GB model will retail for £45. Apple's VP Worldwide iPod Marketing Greg Joswiak says: "At just £32 the iPod shuffle is the most affordable iPod ever. The new 2GB model lets music lovers bring even more songs everywhere they go in the impossibly small iPod shuffle".


Warner Music International has announced a deal with a Russian indie label called Nikitin which will see the latter exclusively release and distribute content from the former's catalogue in Russia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, using IFPI approved CD manufacturing plants, presumably to combat fears of official Warner master tapes ending up in the hands of Russia's prevalent music pirates. Nikitin will also take on responsibility for administrating WMI's public performance royalties in those territories, working with collection society Russian Phonographic Association.

Confirming the new relationship, WMI Vice-Chair John Reid told reporters: "In order to offer consumers more rewarding music experiences we continue to aggressively combat the trade in counterfeit CDs and DVDs across Russia and the CIS. Alongside our efforts to foster the growth in digital sales, our partnership with Nikitin will be crucial in accelerating the provision of quality, legal alternatives to piracy. Nikitin's scale, ambition and expertise in nurturing the legitimate Russian music market make them an ideal ally for us. We are excited about the new opportunities this agreement offers Warner Music and its artists".

Nikitin managing shareholder Alexey Nikitin added: "We are pleased that our long-term expertise within the Russian music market will now provide Warner Music and their artists with a new means to connect with local audiences. By supplying our advanced network of retail clients with new releases as well as back catalogue, locally manufactured products as well as premium imported DVDs and CDs, we will be in a position to provide a compelling choice of music across numerous genres. In addition, as a partner with Warner Music in the Digital Access platform, we are jointly developing digital music distribution in Russia and the majority of CIS countries".


The BBC is to make full TV shows available via iTunes for the first time. The Beeb follows certain US broadcasters in selling downloads of certain key shows at £1.89 a time. New shows will appear in the download store after they have come off the BBC's own free to view streaming/limited play download web service the iPlayer (which is normally seven days after first airing on BBC TV).

The deal has been done with the Beeb's commercial division BBC Worldwide. Simon Danker of that division told reporters: "We want to give audiences a wide variety of options on how and where to view their favourite BBC shows. With more people now choosing to watch TV shows on their iPods, fans can now enjoy those shows wherever they are".


Pink has split up with her husband, motocross racer Carey Hart, after two years of marriage. The pair claim that the split was amicable, according to a statement released by Pink's rep, Michele Schweitzer. "This decision was made by best friends with a huge amount of love and respect for one another", it read. "While the marriage is over, their friendship has never been stronger".


Lily Allen may be dropped as the face of lingerie firm Agent Provocateur - just four months after taking on the role - reportedly because the couple who own the company, who are apparently getting divorced, can't agree on whether she is a suitable figurehead for their brand. Allen is said to be upset about the move, though the company themselves say no decision has actually been reached, that discussions are ongoing, and that photos taken of Allen already in their gear could still be used.


John McClure from Reverend and The Makers has had a go at Leona Lewis and the 'new rave' thing.

On the rave stuff he told Metro: "I'm not into all that new rave shit. It's a con. I love rave music but new rave isn't rave music; it's like New Order b-sides from 1985. It's rave music for people who hate raves, like Jurassic 5 is hip-hop for people who don't like hip-hop".

On Leona Lewis, he added: "I don't like Leona Lewis as well. She's nominated for four Brit Awards. Seriously, how can that happen? She's so devoid of talent. She's part of this endless stream who release really bad records. She can't play anything, or write her own songs. What are you doing love? Stop".

Some of which is rubbish. She may not play anything or write anything, but she's not devoid of talent, because whichever way you look at it, she's got an incredible voice.


Talking of 'X Factor' type stuff, Simply Red man Mick Hucknall says Simon Cowell is responsible for all war, disease and hunger. Oh hang, no, he's responsible for a culture that fails to support new musical talent. By comparison that doesn't sound so great a crime really does it?

But anyway, here's what Hucknall says about the state of the music biz now compared to when he started out: "Our culture isn't supporting recorded music in the same way it did ten years ago. The 'X Factor's done an incredible amount of damage. It's benefited one or two individuals - like Slimy Cowell - who've made a fortune, but I wonder how much the actual artistes will make or if anyone will know who they are in ten years? It's great family entertainment for people who don't give a toss about the recording industry, but for us as artists it's very damaging".

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