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INFORMATION
Classifieds
CMU Info
TODAY'S NEWS
Top Stories
The axe to swing once more at EMI
Libraries express concerns about DEB
In The Pop Courts
Court dismisses EMI's case against SeeqPod
Jill Scott sued
Noel to appear in Canadian court to speak about onstage attack
In The Pop Hospital
Cohen back injury forces tour postponement
Obituaries
Jazz legend Danworth dies
Awards & Contests
Prince Harry to send recorded message to BRITs
Reunions & Splits
More Aerosmith and Tyler nonsense
In The Studio
New Oasis won't be called Oasis
Films & Shows News
Cast lined up for Boy George telly biopic
Reviews
Single review: Placebo - Bright Lights (PIAS)
Talks, Debates & Conventions
Ronson to speak at Ibiza music convention
The Music Business
Majors sign up to expanding music t-shirt range
The Digital Business
Brazilian file-sharing sites shut down
The Media Business
Anti-2015 digital switchover lobby go to the Lords
What to make of The London Weekly?
Radio 1 to stage 'In New Music' events in Newcastle
Chart Of The Day
Chart update
And finally...
Sausage roll half way to having more fans than Cheryl Cole


 
MONDAY 8TH FEBUARY
CMU & SOUND CITY PICK A PANEL: STAGE TWO
So, the panel topic suggestions have been coming in thick and fast for the last three weeks, but after much debate among the CMU team and our friends at Sound City we have selected our five favourites. Now it's time for you to vote.

As previously reported, organisers of the brilliant Liverpool Sound City have set aside one conference session at this year's event in May for you, the CMU readership, to control. Liverpool Sound City consists of four days of talks, debates, gigs, showcases and parties, aimed at everyone working in music, from the grass roots to the biggest corporate operations, from the artist, songwriter, producer, label, management, promoter, agent, A&R, digital, publicity and media communities. And, in the case of the showcases, every music fan within earshot.


 
This year, the European edition of the mighty MUSExpo will help form the main conference strand of the Sound City event. The Sound City team, assisted by MUSExpo, will together compile an excellent line up of panels, keynotes and debates, covering the hot topics and issues in the music industry in 2010, and involving an array of leading industry practitioners.

But in addition to all that, there is one slot available for you - the CMU readership - to programme. That slot will be dedicated to one of the following panel topics, all suggested by readers. But only one can be debated. Choose which you'd like to see from this shortlist of readers' suggestions:

01 Why won't artists just bloody well take control? [CONTROL]
Given all the DIY tools now available to young bands, why do so many still aim for that record label deal?

02 Is live music really booming? [LIVE]
Is the live industry really in the good health we're always told, and how can the wider industry support grass roots live?

03 Should major labels be dropping A&Rs rather than bands? [MAJORS]
Are current major label personnel really up to the challenge of the digital age?

04 Digital DIY is killing music [DIY]
Free digital platforms enable a barrage of mediocre music to swamp the good stuff, and means artists with marketing rather than musical skills have the advantage. How can the music and digital industries combine to truly benefit good music talent?

05 Music radio will die, and good riddance [RADIO]
Can real music radio survive, and if not how can web services take its place in promoting new music?

You can vote for your favourite right now. Just email the 'keyword' of your preferred panel (ie the capitals after the panel title) to soundcity@unlimitedmedia.co.uk. We will be reporting from the event, so it's worth voting even if you don't think you will make it to Sound City this year, because we'll let you know what the final panel say here in the Daily. And don't forget, everyone who votes will be put into a draw to win a free pair of tickets to the whole convention.

Vote now, and in the meantime check out all the other info you need on Liverpool Sound City at www.liverpoolsoundcity.co.uk. After you've read the rest of today's CMU Daily though, obviously.

Andy Malt
Editor, CMU Daily

 
MASKS
Sitting somewhere between Fuck Buttons and Errors, with maybe a touch of Explosions In The Sky, south coast duo Masks, aka the enigmatic Luke and James, sprang into life last July, taking their name from the masks they wore on stage so that friends wouldn't recognise them and find out what they were up to while they were still developing their sound. I'm not sure how well the masks worked as a disguise, but the masks and the name stuck.

 
Still in their teens, university keeps them apart for much of the time, though Luke, at least, has apparently overcome this physical separation by playing live with a projection of James when he's not available to perform in person. Though when Fear & Records saw them play live last year both guys were there in person. And it was after that gig that the label swiftly signed them up to release their debut EP. Which finally arrives on 22 Mar. Check out the lead track from that - 'Forever Dancing' - on Masks' MySpace right now.

www.myspace.com/wewearmasks



 
  LET THE MAKERS OF CMU DO SOMETHING CREATIVE FOR YOU
UnLimited Creative is the creative services agency owned by CMU publishers UnLimited Media. We work with music and media companies, consumer brands, and other marketing and PR agencies, providing these services:

Marketing & PR: We devise and run marketing and PR campaigns, specialising in the youth and student markets, music and cultural products and marketing partnerships.

Content: We provide entertainment content to brands and media. We develop content strands. We produce original content. We manage content delivery.

Design & Print: We provide design, print and contract publishing services. We create brand identities. We design and produce websites. We produce & print marketing materials and corporate media.

Media & PR Training: We provide PR, media and music business training. We offer a menu of seminars. We develop bespoke courses. We develop out-reach training as part of CSR programmes.

To read about past projects click here. To discuss how we can help your company or project, email chris@unlimitedmedia.co.uk
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Shunt will stay at London Bridge for another year
Marshall appoints new staff at Scott Free UK
Brockley Jack to stage south east Londoner-related new writing season
 
RAJAR round up - February 2010
Facebook say no current plans for a music service
Another radio boss speaks out against rush to DAB
 
Merton criticises film festival for allegedly dropping him
Zellweger to judge at Berlin Film Festival
Tim Burton to lead Cannes jury
 

THE AXE TO SWING ONCE MORE AT EMI
So, no surprises here, really, but word has it the recorded music division of EMI is planning yet more job cuts. This follows news last week that the music major made a £1.75 billion loss in the financial year up to 31 Mar 2009, and desperately needs its owner's financial backers to stump up a £100 million in hard cash in the next few months, otherwise it may renege on its loan commitments to Citigroup, allowing the US bank to take control of the company.

As well as preparing a new business development plan to convince Terra Firma investors that they should stump up yet more cash to save the flagging music firm, EMI Music top man Elio Leoni-Sceti is apparently looking for a load more cost savings, despite a very bloody axe having already been swung in EMI towers back in 2008 shortly after Terra Firma's original acquisition of the company. Then again, EMI's rivals have been quietly streamlining their headcount ever since, so if the London-based major has its heart set on being the most pared to the bone major player in the music business, then a few more sackings are probably needed anyway.

The cuts are likely to be orchestrated by Shane Naughton, the major's new finance director who starts today having left his previous job at Music Week publishers United Business Media. It's thought the firm will outsource some of its back office operations to cut its administrative headcount. Further consolidation of record label operations is also likely, with Leoni-Sceti and Naughton seemingly of the opinion - probably rightly - that the major's Music Services division, what was formerly distribution and now also includes merchandising, is the EMI unit with most potential for revenue growth. They might also want to think of better ways to utilise their hugely valuable recordings catalogue.

Admitting that a radical new business plan is being drawn up, Leoni-Sceti is quoted by the Telegraph thus: "We will present a compelling new five-year business plan with particular focus on the coming year. It will involve both an acceleration in revenues coming from product innovation at EMI Music Services and some cost reductions from the introduction of new systems and technology and the elimination of some duplication. This will confirm our vision to evolve into a digitally-led music company. We have a strong business which is on the right track and that is our best guarantee of our future".

So that's all lovely. I'm now putting my money on an EMI/Warner merger in November.

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LIBRARIES EXPRESS CONCERNS ABOUT DEB
So, the House Of Lords continues to give consideration to the Digital Economy Bill while opposition to it, and in particular the controversial three-strikes provisions for combating online piracy, continues to grow. The latest sector to air its concerns about three-strikes is the hard-to-hate librarian community, who are concerned that libraries might find themselves in trouble when people inevitably use their web facilities to access unlicensed content online. Hotels are also stressing that they too might see their broadband connections suspended under the new three-strikes system, when guests make use of the free wi-fi connections now often available in hotels to illegally file-share.

In a letter addressed to film making lord David Puttnam, who has spoken in support of the DEB, a consortium of libraries, universities and museums wrote: "Because public institutions often provide internet access to hundreds or thousands of individual users, the complexity of our position in relation to copyright infringements must be taken into consideration".

They add that the liabilities of "intermediaries" like libraries are not addressed by the bill, concluding: "If this is not done, a public institution such as a library, school or university's internet connection as a whole could be jeopardised, resulting in loss of internet access to large sections of the public, particularly the fifteen million citizens without an internet connection at home".

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COURT DISMISSES EMI'S CASE AGAINST SEEQPOD
A US district court has dismissed EMI's copyright infringement action against playable search company SeeqPod, ruling that the New York court did not have jurisdiction over the California-based company and its directors and financial backers.

The major sued the people behind the music search service - which enabled users to play music found by a search through a bespoke web-based player, even though much of the music found was unlicensed - as well as the company itself. Presumably because they rightly saw that the search firm was heading towards bankruptcy. It finally shutdown last April.

In theory, EMI could now launch new proceedings in another US jurisdiction, presumably California, though it seems unlikely they'll bother. The dismissal last week did not include EMI's interesting side case against a web developer who used the SeeqPod API in an application he created, who the major was also trying to hold liable for copyright infringement. But word has it he has reached an out of court settlement with the music company.

Given SeeqPod no longer exists (though a Japanese company is buying some of its assets) this ruling is pretty irrelevant regards the current and future state of the digital music market. And let's face it, EMI might not exist this time next year either, so it's doubly irrelevant.

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JILL SCOTT SUED
R&B singer and 'No 1 Ladies Detective Agency' star Jill Scott has been sued by her long-time record label, LA-based indie Hidden Beach Records. The lawsuit was launched last week, and seemingly follows Scott's decision last October to leave the label after a ten year partnership.

The label's founder, Steve McKeever, seems offended by Scott's decision to leave his roster, but is suing because he says the singer still owes his company three more albums.

McKeever rightly recognises that Scott will argue she has no outstanding commitments to Hidden Beach because of that quirk of Californian law which allows artists to get out of exclusivity agreements with studios or labels after seven years. However, the label man argues that said laws say artists who break contracts using the seven year get out still have a duty to compensate their label for any financial loss. It's those losses he is suing for.

But Scott's people argue her decision to leave Hidden Beach was well within California's laws on artist contracts, and that she has no legal obligation to pay McKeever any compensation.

The rep told Billboard: "The lawsuit filed on 3 Feb 2010 by Hidden Beach Recordings against Jill Scott has no legal merit and misrepresents the history of Ms Scott's relationship with the label. Jill Scott has the legal right to terminate her recording contract with Hidden Beach Recordings under California's seven year rule, where she had been a recording artist for more than ten years".

They continued: "During her time at Hidden Beach Recordings, she released several highly successful albums. At this time, with many creative projects in the works which include music, film and television roles and product development, Ms Scott looks forward to continuing to further her artistry and building the Jill Scott brand in other creative environments".

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NOEL TO APPEAR IN CANADIAN COURT TO SPEAK ABOUT ONSTAGE ATTACK
Noel Gallagher is reportedly planning to attend a Canadian court himself to deliver a 'victim impact statement' ahead of the sentencing of that dude who pushed the then Oasis man to the ground during a gig in Toronto in 2007.

The man, Daniel Sullivan, has pleaded guilty to the charge of assault causing bodily harm, and was due to be sentenced on Friday. But after hearing that Gallagher wanted to deliver his victim statement himself, rather than someone else reading it in court, the prosecution asked for the sentencing to be postponed. The defence argued such a postponement was unfair given Sullivan had pleaded guilty to the crime, and he was now in a nervous state while waiting to learn his fate. But the judge said that while he sympathised with the defendant, he had a duty to err to favouring the victim's wishes over those of the accused. It's not clear when Gallagher's moment in court will occur.

Oasis had to cancel a number of gigs because of injuries Noel suffered, and he reckons it took eight months to recover from the incident. Aside from the criminal case, it's thought the former Oasis star will sue Sullivan for up to $2 million in damages.

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COHEN BACK INJURY FORCES TOUR POSTPONEMENT
Leonard Cohen has been forced to postpone his European tour by six months because of a back injury. It's not known how 75 year old Cohen got the injury, but he is reportedly undergoing physiotherapy as we speak. The Euro tour will now kick off in France in September.

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JAZZ LEGEND DANWORTH DIES
Saxophonist Johnny Dankworth, a true legend in the British jazz community for over six decades, and an accomplished musical director who worked with the likes of Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald, has died in a London hospital aged 82.

His passing was announced by his wife, singer Dame Cleo Laine, during a concert performed by her and the couple's children at a theatre in the grounds of their Buckinghamshire home on the very evening after his death. Which is a pretty remarkable demonstration of the 'show must go on' philosophy. The news left the show's audience visibly moved, and transformed the evening into a tribute of Dankworth's life.

Called "one of the totemic figures of British jazz" and the UK's "first major jazz musician" by Jazzwise magazine, and dubbed, simply, as a "genius" by pop jazz type Jamie Cullum, Dankworth won a place at the Royal Academy Of Music aged seventeen, and, aside from a short spell in the army, worked in music his whole life.

In the sixties, he also became known as a composer of movie and TV themes, and among many other projects penned the brilliant opening music to 'The Avengers'. Having founded the Stables Theatre and accompanying music summer school at his home in Wavendon in 1970, he later created the London Symphony Orchestra Summer Pops.

He continued to perform prolifically until he fell ill last October. Despite his illness he still performed at last November's London Jazz Festival, playing his saxophone from his wheelchair. All in all a truly inspiring composer, musician and performer both within his own genre and beyond.

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PRINCE HARRY TO SEND RECORDED MESSAGE TO BRITS
Celebrity soldier, hilarious racist and famous pisshead Harry Windsor is set to formally wish the BRIT Awards a happy thirtieth birthday at next week's big awards bash, in a recorded message to be played out to the intoxicated music types who will fill Earls Court on Tuesday night. From one pisshead to a room full of others. Makes sense. And if The Soldiers are there, from one soldier to three others. And if Cheryl Cole's there, from one racist to - yeah, well, you see where I'm going with that, right?

The ginger prince will say: "The BRITs is a celebration of all that is totally outstanding and unique about British music. And what's less well known about the BRITs is the fantastic work it does raising millions of pounds for the BRIT Trust which has benefited thousands of young people to develop their talents and generally enrich our society".

The BRITs take place next Tuesday (16 Feb) at Earls Court, and will be aired on ITV1.

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MORE AEROSMITH AND TYLER NONSENSE
For a moment I thought Steven Tyler's lawyer's previously reported stern letter to the management of Aerosmith, telling the band's people and its other members to stop saying their frontman had quit and that they are looking for a new singer, had worked. Aerosmith's Joe Perry, who has been most vocal about Tyler standing down, has confirmed to Classic Rock that Tyler is still fronting his band.

However, the actual Classic Rock quote simply reaffirms what Perry was saying towards the end of last year - that Tyler is taking a two year break from Aerosmith and that the rest of the band plan to continue performing, but with a new singer, during that time. Tyler's legal letter, revealed by Billboard last week, denies the two year hiatus claims also. Though it's possible Perry's interview with Classic Rock preceded that letter being sent anyway.

Here's what he's told the rock mag: "Steven hasn't quit the band, nor have we sacked him. We're taking the attitude that he's going on a vacation from Aerosmith. While he's away working on other projects, the rest of us want to carry on playing live. So we will bring another singer to make this happen. We're not daft enough to think we can replace Steven, and that's not our plan. But, after 40 years of working together, we just don't wanna stop. How long with Steven be away? He says it'll be two years, but I believe he'll be back a lot sooner. It may end up that we only do ten shows with the new person!"

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NEW OASIS WON'T BE CALLED OASIS
Liam G has confirmed that his new band - Oasis Minus Noel - won't be called Oasis, as he had at one time suggested. He told Xfm: "No, it's not Oasis, that was a shit name anyway. I'm glad to see the back of it".

He added that the band already had a new name in mind, but that they wouldn't reveal it until they were fully happy with it. Meanwhile, the NME is running a blog debate on possible names. I'm proposing Oasis Minus Noel. Practical, easy to use, and a guarantee that the new Oasis will never attempt a Christmas song.

Noel G, by the way, will play his first post-Oasis gigs next month as part of the Teenage Cancer Trust programme. This has been very widely reported, but we never quite got round to writing about it here in the CMU Daily. Now we have. Fun times.

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CAST LINED UP FOR BOY GEORGE TELLY BIOPIC
Mathew Horne will play Culture Club drummer Jon Moss in a new BBC drama about the life of Boy George. The dramatisation will follow Boy George's early career, and therefore the period when the Culture Club frontman was in a relationship with Moss. George will be played by Douglas Booth, while Marc Warren will play Steve Strange, and Mark Gatiss will pretend to be Malcolm McLaren.

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SINGLE REVIEW: Placebo - Bright Lights (PIAS)
Dare I say that Brian Molko - erstwhile the 90s poster boy for androgynous perfection - has turned a little... hmm, bland? My sixteen year old self is cringing at the mere prospect - but then again, she'd probably do just that if she was given a listen of this.

'Bright Lights', the latest single to be taken from last year's rather underwhelming 'Battle For The Sun', is not an awful song - it's quite nice, in a catchy, could-be-used-for-a-sentimental-telly-sequence kind of way. But instead of progression, all we're getting from the band who once pioneered innovation in both sound and image, is regression, laziness, and a desire to fit the crowd-pleasing norms.

I seem to remember something very similar happen to Snow Patrol. TW

Release date: 7 Feb
Press contact: PIAS IH [all]

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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RONSON TO SPEAK AT IBIZA MUSIC CONVENTION
Organisers of the electronic music focused International Music Summit, which takes place in Ibiza from 26-28 May, will include a keynote interview with Mark Ronson.

David Guetta, Luciano, Annie Mac, Erick Morillo, Skream, Arthur Baker and Robin Millar are also all set to speak, plus reps from Coke, Ministry, Radio 1, Beatport and Resident Advisor will all be on hand to offer some insights and world-renowned telly music supervisor Alexandra Patsavas will be offering some sync tips geared towards dance music types. Hmm, wonder if me mentioning how cool this all sounds here might persuade said organisers to fly me over there to cover the event and ramble on about music copyright or 360 degree business models? Let's see, shall we?

Commenting on the event's provisional conference line up, IMS co-founder Ben Turner told reporters: "IMS was never about the artists, more the people behind the curtain who help guide the gifted. [But] in 2010, we've been overwhelmed by approaches from artists to be involved in some way. It's a great testament to our first two years. Watch out for more special names to follow..."

More info and tickets and whatnot at www.internationalmusicsummit.com

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MAJORS SIGN UP TO EXPANDING MUSIC T-SHIRT RANGE
Warner and Universal divisions have signed up with one of those music t-shirt enterprises. As previously reported, various companies have started selling music t-shirts which either come with lyrics or an album cover artwork and tracklisting printed on the fabric, and which normally have a code on the label which enables its owner to download one or more tunes related to the featured artist.

Invisible DJ, to whom the Warners Bros label and Universal's Interscope will now be licensing artists, artwork and content, is the company behind the previously reported Mos Def t-shirt, which gave fans a fashionable way to acquire the hip hopper's last album, 'The Ecstatic'.

According to Digital Music News, the major label partners join the likes of Downtown Records, Shangri-La, Knitting Factory, and Dim Mak in signing up to work with Invisible DJ. And sales of t-shirts that provide digital access to full albums now count towards the US album charts.

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BRAZILIAN FILE-SHARING SITES SHUT DOWN
Eight websites and blogs that allegedly enabled or supported illegal file-sharing have been shut down by the authorities in Brazil in an effort backed by the country's Association Of Anti-Piracy For Music & Film and the local office of the International Federation Of The Phonographic Industry. The move follows the recent IFPI Digital Music Report that specifically named Brazil as a country where the music industry was suffering big time as a result of prolific online piracy.

Billboard says the raids have resulted in 40,000 illegal tracks being taken offline, though I'm not sure if that means the offending websites - which include magrelodownloads, downloadingnews and downclube - were actually hosting said music files, or if they mean easily accessible links to offending content are no longer available.

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ANTI-2015 DIGITAL SWITCHOVER LOBBY GO TO THE LORDS
The much previously reported and seemingly growing opposition to the proposal to start turning off the bulk of the FM radio network in 2015 resulted in a formal submission to the House Of Lords last week, the 2015 target being one of the many things included in the Digital Economy Bill currently being considered by the peers.

As previously reported, the big boys of radio - including Global Radio, Bauer Radio and the BBC - support the 2015 deadline, mainly because it will once and for all force people to move to the digital audio broadcasting network, and save radio firms from the cost and hassle of having to concurrently broadcast their services on both DAB and FM.

Though some conspiracy theorists argue that Global actually continues to support the 2015 switchover, despite divesting itself of its stake in the main national DAB network, because it fears that if the FM network is likely to be around for a good decade yet, media regulator OfCom may force it to reapply for the rights to use the frequencies occupied by one of its biggest assets, Classic FM.

But many smaller radio firms say the deadline is unrealistic, because DAB has relatively small market penetration and the network is yet to reach all parts of the UK. They are also bothered that current switchover plans potentially leave 120 smaller stations still broadcasting on analogue - because of limitations in the reach and capacity of the DAB network - which would put those stations at a distinct disadvantage once the bigger stations are only broadcasting on DAB.

They also argue that because channels on the DAB networks are controlled by private owners rather than OfCom itself, the bigger radio companies, who have more to bargain with when negotiating with said network owners, are at an unfair advantage. Such is the opposition to the 2015 switchover among some smaller radio operators that both UTV and UKRD-TLRC have quit commercial radio trade body Radiocentre over the issue.

The Lords submission was backed by 53 commercial radio stations owned by a total of thirteen companies, and said: "We believe that switching off AM and FM signals in 2015 would not be in the interest of consumers, and that the proposal to exclude over 120 local commercial radio stations from digital migration plans damages local radio. Rather than pressing ahead with a selective switchover in 2015, before consumers are ready, we propose that the switchover, if and when it occurs, should encompass all commercial and BBC radio".

Meanwhile The Guardian has quoted UTV's MD Scott Taunton on the issue, who noted last week's RAJAR stats in which listening figures on many digital-only stations were down.

He said: "[The RAJARs] show that the government is out of tune with radio listeners. It is completely premature to be legislating for a digital radio switchover when digital radio take-up is in decline. By all means we should make legislative changes which are necessary and urgent today, but why are we giving such enormous powers to the government to press ahead with plans to switch off AM and FM as early as 2015 when the evidence shows that listeners won't be ready by then?"

Taunton adds that if the radio industry waits before undertaking a complete digital switchover the superior DAB+ system will be ready.

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WHAT TO MAKE OF THE LONDON WEEKLY?
So, the latest freesheet to hit London - The London Weekly - arrived on Friday leaving the capital's media community bemused, amused and generally confused.

Basically, the paper was awful, with over half the stories either pasted straight from a press release or off someone else's website, no exclusives and little actual news, a plethora of basic graphic design rules broken (but not in a funky anti-establishment way), and many snetences ritten a like this bit one. There was very little advertising, and at least two of the ads that were inside (seemingly booked by Ticketmaster) blatantly linked to advertorial. Meanwhile the promised "city wide distribution" seemed to be confined to a handful of tube stations. Oh, and the Top 5 albums of the week feature only reviewed four records.

Of course, it's all too easy for the media establishment to mock and disregard newcomers and upstarts, and often said establishment lives to regrets such initial cynicism. But then I'm not sure there has ever been a disregarded newcomer quite as bad as this one. In fact, it was so bad that, when coupled with the previously reported mystery behind who is backing the new paper, the Twitterati began to speculate that the whole thing was an elaborate hoax in a Chris Morris style, perhaps designed to be some sort of publicity stunt, perhaps for Morris' new film. But if the Weekly was a joke, well, the punchline is yet to be delivered, and the few people who are admitting to having a link with the paper are yet to do the big reveal.

It seems more likely that the paper is just a badly thought out misadventure by a group of ambitious media mogul wannabes who misjudged just how much work has to go into producing even a mediocre publication. A particular misjudgement was to vastly oversell the product before its launch. In fact, had the paper quietly slipped onto the market in an east London suburb, slowly built a team of aspiring young journalists who would probably work for free, and grown and developed over a year or so before boldy taking on the whole capital, they might have got away with such a poor first effort.

The aforementioned media establishment relished the rubbishness of the product so much because of the bold claims made by The London Weekly's mysterious publishers late last year, that they would single handedly mop up the market left by thelondonpaper and London Lite, the now defunct London freesheets created by the publishers of The Times and Daily Mail respectively.

The identity of The London Weekly's publisher remains a mystery. It's named publishers - the Global Publishing Group - don't really exist, and neither the paper nor its website provides any information of the publication's physical office or the identity of its printers, two omissions which I'm pretty sure are against the law (such information is required, if nothing else, so anyone libelled knows who to sue - though the Weekly's terms and conditions optimistically try to distance the publishers from any liabilities rising from the content within, possibly because half of it really came from unknown online sources).

The blogosphere and media like the Media Guardian are linking the title to an East London urban music outfit called The Invincible Group, whose main claim to fame, other than a rather strange corporate website, is that they produce the previously reported and therefore very real Urban Music Awards. The company is headed up by the self-proclaimed "serial entrepreneur" Jordan Kensington, though his own social media presence has been very quiet about any involvement in the capital's newest media.

So, lots remains to be seen. Whether The London Weekly is, in fact, an elaborate hoax, or just a publishing misadventure. Whether Invincible are, in fact, the company behind the project. And whether the whole thing will make it to issue two on Friday. If, by some extraordinary turn of events, this newspaper transforms itself into a going concern, bagsy the film rights.

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RADIO 1 TO STAGE 'IN NEW MUSIC' EVENTS IN NEWCASTLE
Radio 1 and 1Xtra will be broadcasting live from Newcastle (upon-Tyne, sorry under-Lyme types) from 4-6 Mar from a series of events being staged under the BBC station's In New Music We Trust banner.

Each of the days will have a genre bias, with Zane Lowe and Nick Grimshaw doing the indie schmindie thing on Thursday, Annie Mac, Kutski and the old guys doing dance stuff on Friday and Westwood and the 1Xtra groovy boys going all urban like on Saturday. The DJs will be hosting all sorts of new talent artists wise.

Radio 1 Live Events chief Neil Wyatt told CMU: "We're really looking forward to bringing In New Music We Trust Live to Newcastle for three nights of amazing broadcasts. This event really underlines BBC Radio 1 and Radio 1xtra's commitment to continually support new and live music throughout the year".

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CHART UPDATE
Hey, look at that, Owl City is still at number one in the singles chart. Let's celebrate by listening to The Postal Service on Spotify, here. In other top ten news, Jedward missed out on the number one slot but are at number two, which is both good and bad at the same time. Let's just move swiftly on, shall we?

There are no other new entries in the top ten but both the 'Glee' and Journey versions of 'Don't Stop Believin' are still up there, despite falling a little, at four and nine, respectively.

Both denied space in the top ten are Ke$ha and Marina And The Diamonds. Ke$ha is new at eleven with 'Blah Blah Blah', while Marina follows closely behind at twelve with 'Hollywood'. Further down, the next new entry is those pesky 'Glee' kids at 26, with 'Somebody To Love', and Calvin Harris rounds off the chart's new blood this week with 'You Used To Hold Me' at 38.

Over in the album chart, Alicia Keys has scored her first ever UK number one, with her latest album, 'The Element Of Freedom', shifting up one place this week. So, well done her.

The album chart is littered with new entries, the first three of which are in the top ten. Corinne Bailey Rae is at five with her second album, 'The Sea', Ke$ha is at eight with 'Animal' and Peter Andre, yes, Peter Andre is at nine with 'Unconditional Love Songs'. I hope that makes up for Sky News pouncing and making him cry the other day.

Also notable in the top ten is Andre Rieu, who has notched up the highest charting classical album of the century, with his collection of Strauss waltzes, 'Forever Vienna', at number two, up from last week's number four. Of course, we're not actually that far into this century, but it's also the highest charting classical album for two decades, beating Nigel Kennedy's recording of Vivaldi's 'The Four Seasons', which went to number three in 1989.

New at eleven are Hot Chip, with 'One Life Stand', while the 'Glee'-fuelled resurgence of Journey continues unabated, with their greatest hits compilation coming in at twelve. Midlake are new at eighteen with 'The Courage Of Others', while Lil Wayne's finally released but critically panned 'Rebirth' draws up at 24. Taylor Swift's 'Fearless' is at 33, and Ocean Colour Scene's 'Saturday' is at 35.

Although many would dispute how "essential" any of Celine Dion's back catalogue is, enough people think that 'My Love: The Essential Collection' is a requirement for their particular collection of music to get it to number 28. Or, as is more likely, enough men think their wives and/or girlfriends would like to own a load of Celine Dion songs come Valentine's Day. Said husbands/boyfriends might find their partners aren't so convinced by the 'essentialness' of Dion either, come next Sunday. Best rush off and exchange it for George Benson's 'Classic Love Songs', which is new this week at 30, or 'Love, Marvin: The Greatest Love Songs Of Marvin Gaye', at 38.

The charts are compiled lovingly by The Official Charts Company.

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SAUSAGE ROLL HALF WAY TO HAVING MORE FANS THAN CHERYL COLE
So, normally I resist the temptation to sign up to the 409 Facebook groups and fan pages I'm invited to join each week, cos really it's just an excuse to be able to spam your Facebook inbox, right? But when a Facebook group called "Can this sausage roll get more fans than Cheryl Cole?" pops up you have to join, right? Especially when you discover the group's owners are posting occasional sausage roll-related facts on the page.

As I write, the eponymous sausage roll has 782,629 fans, while Ms Cole has 1,507,996, so I guess the snack food is half way to achieving its mission. Of course, this is another totally pointless Facebook race, but with Paddy Power taking bets on who will win it, why not take part?

Support the Girl Aloud at: www.facebook.com/CherylCole

Support the sausage roll at www.facebook.com/pages/can-this-sausage-roll-get-more-fans-than-cheryl-cole/293965221672

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