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Job ads
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TODAY'S NEWS
Top Stories
Robbie considering city funding for future albums
In The Pop Courts
Bronfman wins lawsuit over proceeds of Warner purchase
Obituaries
Jacksoul frontman dies
Awards & Contests
Peter Kay to host BRITs?
PRS to run its own blue plaque scheme
Artist Deals
Everything Everything sign to Geffen
In The Studio
Guetta producing Rowland
Timbaland erases Chris Brown from new single
Release News
Mew announce live album
Fever Ray announces live album
Free Courteeners download
Gigs N Tours News
Pulled Apart By Horses UK tour
Festival News
U2 to headline Glastonbury 2010
Talks, Debates N Trade Fairs
MMF launch induction day for new managers
Reviews
Album review: Cold Cave - Love Comes Close (Matador Records)
The Music Business
More idle EMI speculation
Is Borders on the brink?
Woolies might return to the high street
Universal International appoint new marketing man
The Digital Business
We7 iPhone app coming in 2010
Lots of chatter about Spotify royalties
The Media Business
Evans wants Stuart for news
Chart Of The Day
Total Rock World Album Chart
And finally...
Bieber comments on mall malarky
Advertising info
Consulting info
CMU Credits + Contacts
 
TUESDAY 24TH NOVEMBER


KELPE
Kelpe is the musical alter ego of Loughborough-born Kel McKeown. Kel first started making music at just fourteen, and eventually came to the attention of DC Recordings in 2003, who released his first EP 'The People Are Trying To Sleep' and then the critically acclaimed album 'Sea Inside Body'. Kelpe's influences are diverse, ranging from classic Warp artists, to the spectral folk of John Renbourn and the minimalism of Steve Reich - all of which is reflected in his own sound. With his latest album, 'Cambio Wechsel', out now on DC Recordings, we caught up with Kelpe to ask our Same Six Questions.

 
Q1 How did you start out making music?
The first music I made was when I was about fourteen years old, on an old Amiga and a sampler I had bought for that purpose. It was basically rave music with samples from here and there. I probably didn't do that much for quite a while from the age of sixteen until about nineteen, when I borrowed a friend's four-track whilst at university, and also had to do some computer-based music for coursework.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
I wanted to make an album full of heavy drums and Moog bass, at hip hop tempo, so it is inspired by listening to music like that, and wanting to participate.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
I start with a looping sound (be it sampled, or something played and recorded at home or in the studio). Then I put a beat to it. Then I get excited and dance around the room listening to it. Then I hate it and don't touch it for a while. Then I come back to it, add more stuff to it, then arrange it. Then once its arranged, I normally play through the track a few times recording automation on the effects knobs. Then lots of EQing and compression, then it's done.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
Prefuse 73, Dabrye, Dimlite, Mike Slott, Hudson Mohawke, Dorian Concept, Fulgeance, Boards Of Canada, Matmos and Can.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
I probably wouldn't talk if they were trying to listen to the music.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest single, and for the future?
I hope it goes to number one, and I hope to headline Glastonbury next year.

MORE>> www.kelpe.co.uk and www.myspace.com/kelpemusic

 
FRANKIE MACHINE - WHY ARE YOU? EP
Last week marked ten years since Frankie Machine released his debut EP, 'Why Are You?' Chances are that means very little to you, but given that he released it through the Artists Against Success label, maybe that's to be expected. However, this doesn't mean you shouldn't acquaint yourself with his particular brand of songwriting brilliance. Something you can do right now, because Frankie has put the long sold out EP up on the internet for free, complete with four songs (including one of my favourite songs of all time, 'Nineteen Seventy Three'), six weird interludes and two bits of rambling from John Peel. All of which are things you need. Click the Mediafire link below to download it, then go to the Frankie Machine website (also linked) for more info.

www.mediafire.com/?iy2uhjoy2nm
www.frankiemachine.com

 
It's that time of year again, where we ask you to tell us your favourite track of the year. Just let us know your decision via this handy form, along with some details about who you are and why you made your choice. We'll publish some of your responses in CMU Daily over the coming weeks.

Cast your vote here

 

 
 

 
PRESS OFFICER WANTED
Leading independent music PR company looking for a Press Officer with experience in both online and traditional PR. Must be passionate, enthusiastic, intelligent, and a creative thinker. Knowledge of communications: PR, marketing, and blogging would be ideal, but not essential. If you are looking for a challenge within a dynamic company, please forward a copy of your CV to: recruitment@mediajunction.co.uk

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Advertise your jobs here: £100 for five editions - ads@unlimitedmedia.co.uk

 

 

26 or younger and have never attended MIDEM? Grab your reduction now!
Either studying or working in the music industry and never attended MIDEM, benefit from a special discount rate at 280 euros, more than 50% off October rate.

Networking: Seek out key contacts and extend your professional network; make deals with your partners and identify new business opportunities.

Educational content: access to the renowned MidemNet digital business conference at no extra cost; get concrete, practical knowledge and training from experts through workshops.

Live concerts: hook up with partners and new contacts at the Opening and Closing Night Parties; discover new international artists with Talent showcases.

MIDEM: the one stop destination for the world’s music community, 23-27 January 2010. Register now! Click here

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MIDEM 2010, Cannes: Intimate club venue available for hire in the Palais du Festival - to showcase your artists and bands.

4am license. UK bar prices. 400 Capacity. Private entrance. Staff and DJ supplied.

Leyline has teamed up with Splash Promotions in Cannes to offer production, event management and PR services.

Contact 020 7575 3285 adrian@leylinepromotions.com / info@splashpromotions.co.uk

www.splashpromotions.co.uk - www.leylinepromotions.com

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SHOREDITCH OFFICE, 764 SQUARE FOOT (15-20 DESKS), £1000 PER MONTH
Self-contained office space available in the centre of Shoreditch, on the corner of Shoreditch High Street and Great Eastern Street, next to the CMU HQ. 5-8 minutes walk from Liverpool Street and Old Street tube stations. A top floor workspace with plenty of natural light in an exciting neighbourhood that is home to numerous music, media, PR and creative companies. 764 square feet, with room for 15-20 desks plus its own kitchen area and adjacent toilets. £1000 per month plus service charge and business rates (£275 per month and £600 per month respectively). Includes heating. Available now. For more information contact ashka@unicornjobs.com.

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Advertise your stuff here: £120 for five editions - ads@unlimitedmedia.co.uk

 

ROBBIE CONSIDERING CITY FUNDING FOR FUTURE ALBUMS
Robbie Williams' management have admitted they are talking to financial institutions about providing the funding for the next stage of the pop star's career, a deal which could give the City types a cut of future Robbie record sales, touring revenues and sponsorship income.

Williams is, of course, at the end of his four album recording deal with EMI. That deal was big news when signed in 2002, partly because of its size - the record company reportedly committed to investing £80 million in the Robster - but also because it was one of the first high profile 360 degree deals, giving EMI a cut of the singer's live and sponsorship revenues.

At the time the boss of management company ie:music, Tim Clark, told CMU that he, Williams and business partner David Enthoven had also considered going it alone back then, and not doing a deal with any record company. The attraction of staying with EMI though, Clark said, was not so much the large cash investment. Obviously that sweetened things, but Clark was confident even then that there were other sources of investment.

The value of doing business with EMI, he said, was the global distribution and marketing infrastructure that comes with a major label deal. While EMI were never especially involved in Williams' touring and sponsorship activity, despite getting a nominal cut of those revenues, they still play an important role in the global release of his records. But he added that as the digital music market grew it became more viable for small companies like ie:music to handle global record releases. Plus, of course, major record companies - and especially EMI - are now much more used to providing distribution and marketing support on a service provider basis, rather than through a traditional record deal.

Anyway, Clark has told reporters that he and the ie team are now looking at all options for the next stage of Robbie's career, which includes talking to a number of major record companies, as well as alternative investors, including City types. It's thought Team Robbie are looking for about £50 million this time, again offering a cut of future album, touring and sponsorship revenues to investors.

Clark: "Obviously we are talking to several record companies about a new deal for Robbie, but we are also looking at talking broadly to all potential investors, including financial institutions".

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BRONFMAN WINS LAWSUIT OVER PROCEEDS OF WARNER PURCHASE
The New York appeals court has upheld a lower court ruling in favour of Warner Music boss Edgar Bronfman Jr, who was sued by a former friend and associate who helped Bronfman mastermind his acquisition of the Warner music company back in 2003.

Richard Snyder, a former CEO of publishers Simon & Schuster, sued Bronfman in 2007. He claimed he helped Bronfman plan his big Warner purchase, and had been promised a cut of the proceeds of the acquisition as part of a gentleman's agreement. Said cut never materialised, which is why Snyder sued.

A lower court previously rejected Snyder's claim and, according to the New York Times, the New York State Court Of Appeals yesterday upheld that ruling.

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JACKSOUL FRONTMAN DIES
The frontman of award winning Canadian R&B outfit Jacksoul, Haydain Neale, has died after losing a fight with cancer.

Jacksoul won much acclaim in their home country for their four albums, the first released back in 1996. All were nominated for Juno Awards, the Canadian equivalent of the BRITSs, and in 2001 and 2007 they won the Juno for Best R&B/Soul Recording.

But recent years had been stressful for the band ever since Neale was involved in a serious motor accident when hit by a car while driving his Vespa motor scooter in Toronto on August 2007. The accident left him in a coma, and while he did recover from the ordeal, his recovery was slow going.

Nevertheless, it was announced earlier this year that a new Jacksoul album would be released, featuring songs written before the accident, but recorded this year. However, Neale was battling with lung cancer at the same time as recovering from his accident, and yesterday that was a battle lost.

Neale's death shocked many who knew him, who felt the singer was finally getting over his illness. Among those paying tribute was Greg Nori, formerly of Canadian rock group Treble Charger, who once worked with Neale at Sony. He told reporters: "This guy was an extremely, extremely generous person. [He] was always 120% to me, as an individual, he really was. I always had a really great friendship with him and we had a great respect for each other. I never saw the guy get mad. He only had positive energy about him. That's my recollection of him. Never, ever did I see any kind of jealousy out of him, or negativity".

Confirming Neale's passing, his wife Michaela said in a statement: "Through all his challenges, Haydain's sense of humour and love of music were ever-present. He constantly brightened the room with his singing and his smile. His joyful presence and beautiful voice will be missed by us all".

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PETER KAY TO HOST BRITS?
According to The Sun, Peter Kay has been signed up to present next year's BRIT Awards. Which, if true, is a shame, because it means I won't be able to attend the ceremony or watch it at home on TV. At the moment I'm hoping it's just a vicious rumour.

Here's what a 'source' said: "Peter was the clear first choice and everything has now been agreed. It's a special BRITs because it's the 30th anniversary so we needed a big name.There's no one with a better pedigree or a better style of delivery which appeals to all ages".

Yeah, it must be a lie, none of that makes any sense.

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PRS TO RUN ITS OWN BLUE PLAQUE SCHEME
Collecting society PRS For Music will this month start its own blue plaque scheme which will see the organisation celebrate the venues where first performances by seminal British bands took place.

The first such plaque will be plonked on the Goods Yard at the East Anglian Railway Museum near Colchester where Blur famously played their first ever gig. A second will be placed on a housing block in Deptford in south east London where it turns out Dire Straits performed together for the first time. The society is welcoming suggestions for future plaques from the public, and will consult its 60,000 members to confirm a site really was the home of an important band's first performance.

Confirming the Heritage Award Scheme, PRS chairman Ellis Rich told CMU: "Celebrating this country's musical heritage is a great thing to do and these plaques will be springing up all over the country. The UK has given the world some fantastic songwriters and performers which enrich our lives and provide the music we love; I'm proud that their humble musical beginnings will now be marked for all to see".

More info on the scheme is at www.prsformusic.com/heritageaward

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EVERYTHING EVERYTHING SIGN TO GEFFEN
We've been fans of Everything Everything since someone thrust their debut single, 'Suffragette Suffragette', into our hands last year sometime. Well, not quite since that exact point, but when we actually listened to it, we really liked it. This year they've released two more singles, and every time one came out we crossed our fingers that the world at large would recognise their talent.

Well, last week the band signed to Universal's Geffen division, which hopefully means that will finally happen when they release their debut album next year.

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GUETTA PRODUCING ROWLAND
David Guetta has revealed that he is producing former Destiny's Child member Kelly Rowland's new solo album. It's top secret, though. So, don't tell anyone.

Guetta whispered to Digital Spy in the strictest confidence: "I'm actually already working with her on her next album. We've just done a few songs at the moment and it's all fairly top secret. We've become really close friends over time. I think she's an amazing singer - one of the best in the industry - and a great person, too".

The pair previously worked together, of course, on Guetta's number one single, 'When Love Takes Over'.

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TIMBALAND ERASES CHRIS BROWN FROM NEW SINGLE
Timbaland has removed vocals by Chris Brown which were due to appear on his new single 'The One I Love', leading to speculation that the producer wants to distance himself from the controversial R&B star, who is busy trying to rebuild his career after his rather violent run in with ex-girlfriend Rihanna at the start of the year.

However, unlike some US artists and producers, Timbaland has not specifically refused to work with Brown, and his manager insists the R&B star's vocals were removed from the new track for entirely creative rather than political reasons. That creative decision, Timbaland's manager insists, was reached by both the producer and Brown himself.

Which may well be true. However we do know that, given Brown's involvement in the track is widely known, the producer decided to change the song's name from 'Maniac' to 'The One I Love' after Brown's maniac moment earlier this year. Rapper DOE, who also guests on the song, confirmed this to TMZ recently.

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MEW ANNOUNCE LIVE ALBUM
CMU favourites Mew will release a live album next month. Recorded in September, 'Live At The Hollywood Palladium' features songs from across the band's career. It'll be available on download stores from 7 Dec.

Here's the tracklist:

Intro
The Circuitry Of The Wolf
Chinaberry Tree
Am I Wry? No
156
Hawaii
Hawaii Dream
Special
The Zookeeper's Boy
Sometimes Life Isn't Easy
Comforting Sounds

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FEVER RAY ANNOUNCES LIVE ALBUM
Fever Ray, aka The Knife's Karin Dreijer Andersson, has announced that she will release a live album, 'Live In Lulea', next week. Featuring all ten tracks from her eponymous debut solo album, plus covers of Nick Cave's 'Stranger Than Kindness' and Vashti Bunyan's 'Here Before', the album will be released digitally on 30 Nov.

Here's the tracklist, even though I've already told you exactly what's on it:

If I Had A Heart
Triangle Walks
Concrete Walls
Seven
I'm Not Done
Now's The Only Time I Know
Keep The Streets Empty For Me
Dry And Dusty
Stranger Than Kindness
When I Grow Up
Here Before
Coconut

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FREE COURTEENERS DOWNLOAD
Want to download a track from The Courteeners? Don't want to pay for it? Want to do it right now? Well, two out of three aint bad.

The Manchester band are giving away a new track, 'Cross My Heart And Hope To Fly', which will appear on their new album when it is released next February. The free track will be available to download from the band's website, though not until 7 Dec, so you'll have to wait a little bit longer.

When it happens the download will be available from www.thecourteeners.com

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PULLED APART BY HORSES UK TOUR
Pulled Apart By Horses have made a name for themselves lately with a handful of acclaimed singles and some supremely energetic live performances. You can check out the latter of those two things when they head out on a brief UK tour next month.

Tour dates:

3 Dec: High Wycombe, Bucks New Union
5 Dec: Leeds, The Cockpit
15 Dec: Glasgow, Captains Rest
16 Dec: Edinburgh, Sneaky Pete's
19 Dec: Southend, Chinnerys

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U2 TO HEADLINE GLASTONBURY 2010
U2 have been confirmed as Friday headliners for next year's 40th anniversary Glastonbury Festival. It'll be the first time the band have ever played the event, despite rumours that they would do so every year since the release of their first album. However, it's unlikely to stop the rumour that they've split, which spreads through the festival site each year.

Announcing the booking, Michael Eavis told reporters: "The 26 year old rumour has finally come true. At last, the biggest band in the world are going to play the best festival in the world! Nothing could be better for our 40th anniversary party. And there are even more surprises in the pipeline..."

The band will fly over to the UK during their US tour especially to play the event, which isn't going to quiet those people who have been suggesting that U2 don't care as much for the environment as perhaps they would like us to think.

Another band rumoured to be playing the festival next year are the Pet Shop Boys, although they told BBC 6music last week that they're yet to be asked. The one and only time they have played the event was in 2000, of which Neil Tenant said: "We played the main stage at nine thirty on Saturday night, and it was an amazing experience. We wondered whether Glastonbury wanted to see the Pet Shop Boys. Whether we were too dance, or pop, or something for them. But it really went down fantastically well".

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MMF LAUNCH INDUCTION DAY FOR NEW MANAGERS
The Music Manager's Forum have announced they will stage an 'induction day' for new managers, which will provide a beginners guide to the industry for anyone considering a career in artist management, covering, among other things, industry organisations, revenue sources, basic marketing, contracts, insurance and finance. The first day will take place on 9 Dec in London. Tickets will cost £95, or £50 for MMF members.

Commenting on the new training event, MMF CEO Jon Webster told CMU: "There is a growing, unsatisfied demand for a short entry level course to complement our existing training that will enable new managers to begin launching new business that will the bedrock of tomorrow's music industry".

Contact lara@musicmanagersforum.co.uk for more details.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Cold Cave - Love Comes Close (Matador Records)
Are you tired of listening to bands who sound like the lead singer has a serious Nick Cave complex? Who use monotonous synth soundscapes adopted from experimental new wave of the late 1970s? US threesome Cold Cave may not make the kind of music that you would appreciate, then. I'm not saying that it's terrible or anything - quite the opposite, actually - it's just... well, it's all a bit on the trendy side, I'm afraid.

'Love Comes Close' (but apparently it won't tear us apart) is the debut album from the aforementioned band, and kudos to them for recreating a sound that is far more authentic to its heroes than the likes of some unmentionable musicians that have cropped up seemingly everywhere as of late. It begins and ends a little slow, but with that, it's a grower, until its warps and droning scuzzy bleeps are embedded in your brain and stomach like a bad hangover. It's unabashedly nostalgic; it owes that to its influences though, and you can't argue with Cold Cave when they clearly know who those influences are.

Cabaret Voltaire-esque 'The Laurels of Erotomania' and the almost sing-a-long verse-and-chorus 'Youth And Lust' are perhaps the most accessible tracks on 'Love Comes Close', and proof that the experimental can sound both authentic and comprehensible at the same time, if done right. TW

Physical release: 2 Nov
Press contact: Matador IH [All]

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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MORE IDLE EMI SPECULATION
A Billboard feature published this week analyses the financial state of EMI, following last week's news that the major label's principle money lender, Citigroup, had knocked back proposals by the music firm's owners Terra Firma to restructure (that is to say cut) EMI's debt commitments.

They note Terra Firma's recent report regarding EMI's performance in the financial year ending 31 Mar this year, in which revenue and profits were up, the latter considerably. EMI's recordings division, where most of the firm's problems are deemed to lie, saw revenues grow 4.6% to £1.095 billion, while profits before deductions were up 217% to £163 million. The major's publishing division saw revenues rise 7.4% to £468 million with profits up 20% to £135 million. All of which means overall EMI Group's revenues were £1.56 billion with profits of £298 million.

So all pretty good really, and definitely an improvement on EMI before Terra Firma's acquisition. But, Billboard points out, you would expect a company brought into private ownership to see some growth shortly after the new management is installed. Especially at EMI, which was widely believed to be suffering from some serious mismanagement prior to Terra Firma's purchase.

More importantly than that, the £298 million in profits is before deductions. Deductions include interest payments to Citigroup, which Billboard reckon could be up to £196 million a year, swallowing up half of EMI's profits, even when the more buoyant EMI Music Publishing is taken into account. Meanwhile, other monies that may have to be discounted from the bottom line profit figure might, Billboard argues, push the company into a loss overall.

The basic gist of Billboard's report, therefore, is that Terra Firma have perhaps achieved more in turning round EMI's fortunes than cynical journalists like me normally admit, but that the major remains weak, not least because of the £2.5 billion in debt commitments its owners saddled it with when they acquired the company.

With time - ie years - things could still be turned around. Had the credit crunch not happened, which would have allowed Citigroup and Terra Firma to sell on EMI's debts and share the risk, time would probably not have been a problem. But in the current credit climate, it's harder to buy time. Which brings us back to our usual conclusion on this - how long will Terra Firma continue to operate with the weight that is EMI around their necks before they decide to cut their losses? Many think not long enough to make EMI a success.

Read Billboard's report here: tinyurl.com/billboardonemi

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IS BORDERS ON THE BRINK?
Borders UK is back on the market just four months after it was acquired as part of a management buy out backed by Valco Capital Partners.

You might remember that Ernst & Young, the book and music sellers' auditors, questioned the commercial viability of the UK Borders business back in August, shortly after the MBO that changed the company's ownership. It seems they were right to do so, with the chain's current backers now looking to bail.

But the Ernst & Young report, coupled with news at least one publisher is now refusing to supply the bookseller over credit concerns, has led many to speculate a buyer won't be found and Borders will be the latest brand to disappear off the high street. Both HMV and WH Smiths expressed interest in taking over the chain, but talks with both seemingly broke off without conclusion. The company's financial advisors subsequently announced the firm was up for sale in an ad in the Financial Times.

Borders management have said little about the sale, though CEO Philip Downer reportedly told staff in a memo last week that they had "received an unsolicited approach from an interested party", and that the company had therefore "retained a corporate finance specialist to investigate future possibilities for the business, in line with best practice".

Downer has always stood by the viability of the company since he led the aforementioned management buy out, and was speaking optimistically about the firm's future as recently as last month. But an increasing number of commentators now seem convinced Borders will be one of a number of retailers to go under in the run up to or shortly after Christmas. The bloke I sat next to on Radio 5Live's 'Wake Up To Money' yesterday reckoned fifteen big retailers will go out of business in the next quarter, Borders most likely among them.

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WOOLIES MIGHT RETURN TO THE HIGH STREET
While another string of retail brands might be about to disappear from the high street, one might be about to return. The company which acquired the Woolworths name when that classic retailer went under this time last year is thinking about bringing the brand back to the high street.

Shop Direct acquired the Woolies name in order to launch a website selling the sorts of things that used to be sold in Woolworths shops. That etail operation launched in June and seems to be going very well. Now management there are considering a new venture that could bring Woolworths back into the physical world.

CEO Mark Newton-Jones told reporters this week: "In the new year we will consider approaches from interested third parties. We believe it could be a successful chain of up to 200 stores, supported by the buying power of Shop Direct".

That implies that Shop Direct, owned by Daily Telegraph proprietors the Barclay brothers, wouldn't take the risk in launching physical stores itself, but rather would franchise out the brand's name and product ranges to others interested in running a high street retail operation.

If Woolworths does return to the high street, new company Alworths could find itself saddled with a trademark dispute. Alworths was set up by a former Woolworths executive called Andy Latham, and will take over five old Woolworths stores, providing Woolies-style shops. Shop Direct have reportedly already accused Latham of choosing a name too similar to the Woolworths trademark they now own.

Whether any new Woolies on the high street would have a serious music department we don't know. The original Woolworths - once the biggest player in British music retail - had already cut back its CD departments prior to its demise last year, of course, and it seems unlikely music product would be an area where any new Woolies operators would see the potential for quick profits.

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UNIVERSAL INTERNATIONAL APPOINT NEW MARKETING MAN
Universal Music International have appointed Andrew Kronfeld to the job of Executive Vice President, International Marketing, which is nice. Kronfeld was previously General Manager for Universal Motown Records in the US. In his new role he will split his time between New York and London.

He will report to Max Hole, who confirmed the appointment yesterday, telling CMU: "Andrew is a great executive and a great music man. No one is better qualified to continue and enhance our unbeatable track record of driving hits around the world and breaking new artists of all music genres".

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WE7 IPHONE APP COMING IN 2010
We7's iPhone app has been in development almost as long as Spotify's. The difference is, of course, the latter's has already been released to the public. However, speaking at the Northern Startup 2.0 event in Manchester earlier this month, We7 CEO Steve Purdham revealed that his app is complete and ready to roll out, but is being deliberately held back until he is confident the digital music service's advertising revenues can sustain the number of new users he predicts We7 will attract as a result of the launch of a mobile service.

Although, like with Spotify, the app itself will only be available to paying subscribers - it will be made available as part of We7's previously reported and still to be launched premium subscription package - Purdham predicts that interest in his overall service will be peaked by the release of the app, and that will boost the number of people using the free-to-use ad-funded We7 platform also.

The company therefore needs to be confident it has the ad revenues to help cover the extra licensing costs such a boost in interest would force them to pay. Such caution, Purdham told the conference, will ultimately see them win out as streaming service of choice over Spotify who, he reckons, are haemorrhaging too much cash too quickly by rushing the development of their consumer offer.

Now, TechCrunch Europe claims that the iPhone version of We7 will become available through iTunes in the first quarter of next year. A couple of fuzzy screenshots obtained by the site seem to show an app very similar to Spotify's. Playlists will be a key feature, although it's not clear from the images if offline caching, allowing users to listen to music without an internet connection (a major attraction of Spotify's software), will be offered.

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LOTS OF CHATTER ABOUT SPOTIFY ROYALTIES
Talking of Spotify, there has been much speculation on the t'internet about how much money artists are receiving, or not, from the popular streaming music service.

Spotify have, of course, been very vague about how much they are paying record companies and collecting societies for the rights to play music, though it is widely assumed their label royalty payments must be more than those of other online music services, simply because major record companies would only have licensed their tunes to such a user-friendly totally on-demand service if the price was right. That said, it's also assumed that the collecting societies, who licence tracks on behalf of the music publishers, must have offered Spotify a below rate card deal, because if the digital service was paying PRS and their like the going rate they'd be haemorrhaging cash left, right and centre.

Either way, the latest chatter on Spotify royalties stems from reports that Lady Gaga recently received a Spotify royalty cheque from the Swedish equivalent of PRS for just $167. This has led to much chattering that either Spotify are screwing the artists or, perhaps, the major record companies, who are shareholders in the streaming music company, are taking the lion's share of any royalty revenues.

The pro-file-sharing brigade have used the story to justify music fans accessing other free but illegal sources of content, arguing that the per-play fee to Lady Gaga must be so small that she's not really any worse off if people steal her music. Torrent Freak quote a Swedish artist called Magnus Uggla who recently withdrew his music from Spotify when he saw how small his royalty cheque from the streaming music company was, declaring: "I'd rather be raped by The Pirate Bay than have my music on Spotify". His anger seemed to be framed more at Spotify's major label shareholders than the technology firm's management.

Of course the Lady Gaga royalty story, even if true, tells us next to nothing. First we don't know what period the royalty payment covered. Second, presumably Swedish collecting society STIM only pays out for Swedish plays of Gaga's music, and we don't know how much her music is played there, nor what she's getting from PRS for Spotify plays in the UK. Also, STIM may well be offering Spotify bargain basement rates to help them get off the ground. And the $167 may be Gaga's personal cut of a bigger pay out to the singer's publishing company. Plus she co-writes all her songs, so may only be receiving a small cut of the overall royalty paid on those songs, depending on the deal between her and her songwriting collaborators.

And none of this accounts for what the recording royalty may have been. True this would have been paid to Gaga's record company, but is likely to have been much bigger than the publishing royalty collected by STIM. Whether Gaga would get a cut of recording royalty money, and if so how much, will, of course, depend on her record contract with Universal.

The fact that additional money, over and above Gaga's $167, goes to multi-national record companies and music publishers will not impress the pro-P2P lobby of course. Though said corporates would presumably point out that without their initial investment in the Gaga brand she wouldn't be able to earn thousands just by showing up to events.

Of course, the fact that the major record companies sweeten their digital deals by taking large upfront payments and equity, none of which has to be shared with artists, is an issue for the wider music industry. Especially if record companies then accept much lower per-play royalties, reducing the monies earned by artists. And of course royalty rates for services like Spotify are a big issue in general - given the digital service providers tell us said royalties need to be slashed long term, while labels, publishers, artists and songwriters all haggle for bigger digital revenues.

So lots to talk about. But I'm far from convinced by the argument that if Lady Gaga only got $167 from her most recent Spotify royalty cheque from STIM then people might as well steal her digital tunes rather than access them via a licensed platform.

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EVANS WANTS STUART FOR NEWS
Chris Evans is reportedly trying to get Moira Stuart as his principle newsreader when he takes over the Radio 2 breakfast show next year. I love this idea. And it would help the BBC combat all those accusations of ageism. Such accusations flooded in, of course, when it became apparent the Beeb were phasing the then 58 year old Stuart out of its news broadcasts back in 2007.

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TOTAL ROCK WORLD ALBUM CHART
It's this week's Total Rock World Album Chart, as counted down on Total Rock last weekend - www.totalrock.com. New entries and re-entries marked with a *.

1. Muse - The Resistance (Warner Bros)
2. Wolfmother - Cosmic Egg (Universal)
3. Pearl Jam - Backspacer (Universal)
4. Paramore - Brand New Eyes (Warner/Atlantic)
5. Alice In Chains - Black Gives Way To Blue (EMI)
6. Rammstein - Liebe Ist Fur Alle Da (Universal)
7. Slayer - World Painted Blood (Sony)*
8. Atreyu - Congregation Of The Damned (Warner/Roadrunner)
9. Foo Fighters - Greatest Hits (Sony)*
10. Nickelback - Dark Horse (Warner/Roadrunner)
11. Nirvana - Live At Reading (Universal/Geffen)*
12. Fleetwood Mac - The Very Best Of (Warner Bros)
13. Weezer - Raditude (Warner Bros)*
14. Bon Jovi - The Circle (Universal/Mercury)*
15. Green Day - 21st Century Breakdown (Warner Bros)
16. Kiss - Sonic Boom (Warner/Roadrunner)
17. Chickenfoot - Chickenfoot (Edel)*
18. Billy Talent - III (Warner/Atlantic)
19. Rise Against - Appeal To Reason (Universal/Geffen)
20. Megadeth - Endgame (Warner/Roadrunner)

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BIEBER COMMENTS ON MALL MALARKY
US pop star Justin Bieber has commented on that previously reported rush of fans at a mall in Long Island, New York at the weekend, which saw the popster's public appearance there cancelled, Bieber himself refused entry, and Def Jam exec James Rappo arrested for refusing to tell fans to go home via Twitter.

Bieber told Ryan Seacrest's widely syndicated US radio show: "The mall, I guess, should have had more security. They weren't expecting 10,000 people to show up. Neither was I. I wanna see my fans. I don't wanna look like a jerk, like a no-show ... but when I got there the police threatened to put me in cuffs and take me and my mum to the penitentiary. They were threatening to put me in jail. They were like, 'If you don't pull off right now, we're gonna arrest you and your mother'".

He continued: "We're not trying to get deported - me and my mum are Canadian. We were just like, 'Whatever'. So we pulled off, went away and it turns out the cops were holding another person... the vice-president of the label. They had him and were like, 'If Justin doesn't Twitter for everyone to go home, then we're gonna send you to jail'. My phone was dead; I had no clue what was going on. They sent him to jail because I didn't Twitter on time".

He also revealed that he is attempting to reschedule the event, which seems optimistic.

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