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CMU Info
Top Stories
Terra Firma v Citigroup: It's all in the scribbles
In The Pop Courts
Axl Rose sued over rented Bentley
Man sues TI over impossible out of jail gig
Artist Deals
Rihanna moves to Roc Nation
In The Studio
Next U2 album to be produced by Danger Mouse
Release News
Laura Marling delays next album
Robyn announces Body Talk Part Three
Books News
Paul Morley to pen Tony Wilson book
John Lydon compiling Rotten scrapbook
Gigs & Tours News
French Gaga gigs postponed because of political unrest
Gallows announce "epically epic" show
Album review: Josephine Foster & The Victor Herraro Band - Anda Jaleo (Fire)
The Music Business
Tesco and Warner UK back on talking terms
BMG Rights Management eyes Aussie launch
The Digital Business
Tunited forms partnership with In The City
The Media Business
Metal Hammer celebrates new Dimmu Borgir with a box
And finally...
Fall man loves Mumford & Sons (well, he loves throwing bottles at them)
Could The Pirate Bay be parked in space?
The best of Bieber

So, chocolate biscuit anyone? I fancy a Blue Riband. Apparently chocolate biscuits are an essential eat if you want to secure a multi-billion pound corporate takeover. Though it might result in said takeover going horribly wrong, costing you and your mates millions and leaving you saddled with a dead weight worth a billion pounds less than what you owe the bank. Well, that's what I read somewhere. Perhaps I'll stick with bananas. Meanwhile, here's the music business week in five.

01: The Terra Firma v Citigroup trial kicked off in New York. Despite out of court talks, Terra Firma's litigation against the bank which advised on and financed their 2007 takeover of EMI went ahead this week. The equity group claims the bank provided misleading advice that caused Terra Firma boss Guy Hands to bid too soon and too high for the music company. Meanwhile, Citigroup is trying to portray Hands as a bitter man who is looking for a scapegoat after his most ambitious acquisition to date went bad. So far it's been Terra Firma staff giving testimonies. Neither side is expected to come out of the trial especially well. CMU reports | Economist review

02: Rupert Murdoch's empire entered the Australian ticketing market. Foxtix says it will "shake up the ticket duopoly" that exists in Australia just now, where the market is dominated by the ubiquitous Ticketmaster and native firm Ticketek. On launch, Foxtix published a research report that said Australian consumers were frustrated with the way live event ticketing works, including inflated fees and unreliable websites. The new ticketing firm claim they'll address those issues. There's currently no indication as to whether Foxtix has ambitions to expand outside of Australia. CMU report

03: ITV re-signed 'X-Factor' and 'Britain's Got Talent' through a new three year deal with Simon Cowell and his Syco company. There had been speculation that Cowell might put 'X-Factor' in the UK on hold to concentrate on the show's launch Stateside, though realistically that was never that likely to happen. Under the new multi-million deal 'X' UK will remain in its autumn slot even though that will clash with the American version of the programme. Most likely, Cowell will only appear on the British programme in the final stages of the competition. CMU report | Guardian report

04: 7Digital announced lots of stuff, including a music service that will work on tablet computer devices being launched by Samsung and Toshiba to compete with the iPad, a new app to work on both Android phones and the iPhone, and plans to relaunch its main online download store later in the year so that it includes editorial from the BBC, gig listings from Songkick and some sort of artwork recognition tool. CMU report | C-Net report

05: The Radioplayer was unveiled at the Radio Festival in Manchester. This is the new online radio platform that will carry both BBC and commercial radio services. Hopefully it will make listening to commercial stations online less of a shit experience, and more like the vastly superior BBC iPlayer. Demoed at the radio industry's big conference this week, Radioplayer is due to launch in December with 200 stations on board by February. CMU report | BBC report

And that's your lot for this week. I hope to see some of you at the Music Mind Exchange event on music funding next Wednesday (www.musicmindexchange.com), and don't forget the next CMU Training seasons kicks off next month, why not join us for a complete beginners guide to the world of music rights (www.theCMUwebsite.com/training)?

Chris Cooke
Business Editor, CMU
VIGSY'S CLUB TIP: The House Party at Counter Culture
As part of the four month Counter Culture arts and music festival currently taking place under the railway arches of London Bridge Station, acclaimed Manchester club night The House Party is moving down to London for the night.

As you might expect, these guys take a venue and do it up to look like a house party - complete with beds to jump on and wardrobes to rummage through. The stereo's a bit bigger than your average living room, though. It's being headlined by The Bays, who I've tipped here heavily in the past. The band mix together a huge variety of styles in their improvised performances, led by Chase & Status live drummer Andy Gangadeen.

Also performing live are Bubz & The Blacknotes, plus there are DJ sets from loads of people, including Dean Chalkley & Si Cheeba, Jayne Compton from Club Brenda, Liam Quinn from Beat Boutique and Bez, who's apparently not in prison any more.

Saturday 23 Oct, 7-9 Crucifix Lane, London, SE1 3JW, 9pm - 6am, £10, more info from countercultureproject.com

So, two of Guy Hands' colleagues took to the witness stand yesterday on day four of the Terra Firma v Citigroup trial, Hands himself having a day off from the interrogations.

As previously reported, earlier this week the tax-phobic equity chief personally stated his allegations that senior Citigroup advisor David Wormsley had called him three times over the weekend before Terra Firma made its audacious bid to buy EMI in 2007. On each occasion, Hands alleges, the banker told him that a rival equity group called Cerberus was about to bid for the flagging music company at 262p per share. Hands, Wormsley advised, should bid quickly and higher.

Citigroup, which denies any such phone calls took place, has made much of the fact that these three crucial conversations are not referred to in any of Terra Firma's own documentation from the time of the deal. The bank's lawyer also expressed surprise that Hands' recollections of the weekend before he made his big £4 billion bid for EMI are rather vague, apart from when it comes to the three phone calls at the heart of the court case.

Backing up their boss man yesterday were Riaz Punja, Terra Firma's due diligence man on the EMI deal, and Kirsten Randell, a compliance assistant who took minutes of meetings that took place over the crucial weekend.

Punja revealed that Team Terra Firma internally referred to their bid for EMI as Project Dice, named after The Rolling Stones song 'Tumbling Dice', the Stones being the one EMI band other than The Beatles that the tedious money men had probably heard of. The Stones, of course, quickly moved their label dealings to Universal Music after Terra Firma took over at EMI.

According to Bloomberg, Punja backed up his boss's testimony yesterday, telling the court: "Guy called me up over the weekend and he said, 'I've just had a conversation with David Wormsley and he tells me that Cerberus is in. They will be bidding tomorrow, and they will be bidding a price of 262'".

Meanwhile, Randall showed the court some of her notes from that all important weekend. Alas they didn't mention Wormsley's phone calls or Cerberus's interest, but there was a key line that read "other bidders - one at 262". That, Team Terra Firma reckon, is proof that Hands had been given reliable advice that a rival bidder was still in the frame and they would have to offer more than 262p per share to be in with a chance of winning.

Citigroup's legal men questioned exactly what that one line of scribble meant. Did it mean Terra Firma knew there were other bidders of which one would offer 262p, or did it mean Terra Firma knew for certain there was just one other bidder who was offering that sum? Was the dash performing the task of a question mark? Did that mean other dashes on the page should be read as question marks as well?

As far as I could see it was a pretty pointless little debate - who uses punctuation consistently when scribbling down notes by hand? And either way, it seems clear Team Terra Firma were, at that point, pretty sure there was a serious rival bidder going to offer 262p, which may have hastened and heightened their own bid. But as to whether that impression was the result of the alleged Wormsley phone chats, the hand written note doesn't really help one way or the other.

The case continues today, with Hands due to be back on the stand.

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Despite usually being such a timely chap, Axl Rose is being sued by car manufacturer Bentley's financial services division over a car, a Flying Spur to be specific, that he leased in 2005 and then failed to return until 2006, several months after it was due back. Actually, I think they're more annoyed about the fact that when he eventually returned it, it was smashed to pieces.

According to TMZ, the company is suing Rose for $73,976.42 in unpaid fees relating to the late return and damage to the $192,000 car. As well as a cracked windscreen, broken tail light, various dents and damaged tires, Bentley also reports that the singer returned a key for another car in place of the spare for the vehicle he rented, and that Rose had driven more than 42,000 miles over his agreed limit.

The lawsuit was filed at the LA Supreme Court earlier this week. Rose is yet to respond.

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More legal woes for TI, this time of the civil kind. The rapper is being sued by a man called Carl Davis over his failure to play a gig back in May designed to celebrate his release from prison. The fact TI's probation terms forbid him from leaving his home at the time of the gig is a very good excuse, but not one that helps Davis.

He claims he lost his life savings in the ill fated 'Welcome Back Party', and suffered chest pains and nausea from the stress the whole thing caused.

Davis originally approached a man called Jervon Morgan about his idea for a 'TI is out of jail' event, he being related to the rapper and claiming to work as an agent for him. Morgan put the promoter in touch with TI's business partner Jason Geter, who runs the rapper's Grand Hustle record company. And so a deal was done.

According to Davis, Morgan and Geter took up front payments from him, and let him start promoting the event, while concealing "the fact from Davis that artist TI was on probation, on three years of supervised release and under home confinement as a condition of his plea agreement".

Despite TI telling a local radio station ahead of the gig he himself would not be able to appear, it seems Davis was under the impression the rapper would perform right until the last minute. He is suing for misrepresentation, promissory fraud, conspiracy, unjust enrichment and breach of contract and wants unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

TI, of course, is about to head back to jail after breaching the terms of his latest probation by being caught in possession of illegal drugs.

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Rihanna has signed a new management deal with Jay-Z's Roc Nation having parted company with current manager Marc Jordan. In his last job Jay-Z signed the singer to a record deal with Universal's Def Jam label.

Rihanna told the Associated Press earlier this week that she is "so excited to take this next step in my career". The deal will also see the singer launch a new company, Rihanna Entertainment, which will "merge all of her businesses, including music, film, fragrance fashion and book ventures".

Her new album, 'Loud', is due out next month.

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After the band's manager Paul McGuinness revealed this week that U2's next album will be released early next year and will be called 'Songs Of Ascent'. Bono has now told The Age that it is being produced by Danger Mouse.

As previously reported, U2 are currently working on a number of projects, including a "club" album with David Guetta. But, says Bono, it's the Danger Mouse album that will most likely be ready first.

Bono told The Age: "We have about twelve songs with [Danger Mouse]. At the moment that looks like the album we will put out next because it's just happening so easily".

He added that he and The Edge are also hoping to record an album based on the Spiderman musical they have written together, but said: "We haven't convinced the rest of the band to do that yet. Larry definitely has a raised eyebrow".

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Earlier this year, Laura Marling announced that she would release two albums this year, the first being the Mercury-nominated 'I Speak Because I Can', which was released in March. But now, like Patrick Wolf before her, she's going to delay the shit out of the follow-up.

Marling told The NME: "It's not going to be this year, but it's good. It will be on its way soon, which is nice. It's becoming different from the last album actually, because I've scrapped a bit of it halfway through. I hope to have it done by February. Setting deadlines is not my favourite thing!"

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Laura Marling may be struggling to finish off her second album of the year, but Robyn is about the release her third. 'Body Talk Part Three' will be released by Universal/Island and the singer's own Konichiwa label on 29 Nov.

Amongst the tracks on the record are collaborations with Diplo ('Dance Hall Queen') and Snoop Dogg ('U Should Know Better').

The tracklist for the album is:

Don't Fucking Tell Me What To Do
Dancing On My Own
Time Machine
Love Kills
Hang With Me
Call Your Girlfriend
None Of Dem
We Dance To The Beat
U Should Know Better
Dance Hall Queen
Get Myself Together
In My Eyes
Stars 4-Ever

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Journalist Paul Morley has announced that he is writing a book about legendary Factory Records boss Tony Wilson.

He revealed the news on Wednesday at an event at London's Queen Elizabeth Hall - called 'The Tony Wilson Interviews' - at which the writer spoke to performance poet Mike Garry, Buzzcocks manager Richard Boon and The Durutti Column's Vini Reilly about Wilson.

It turned out the event was really intended as research for the book, Morley musing that while most authors write a book and then stage events to promote it, he thought it would be more in-keeping with Wilson's approach to life and business to do the events first and then write the book.

Morley said: "I'm writing a book about Tony Wilson. He's a fascinating figure. There's already two or three books about him, but that doesn't put me off at all!"

He added: "Often what happens with a book is that, after it's written, there's the book launch and these kind of events then happen. I thought it was very Wilsonian - and I promise to my publishers, if they're here, this isn't just a form of prevarication - to do some Tony themed events first, and make them part of the book itself".

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Sex Pistols frontman John Lydon has announced that he is compiling a coffee table book, entitled 'Mr Rotten's Scrapbook'. The 250 page book will be limited to 750 copies and cost £450.

Each copy of the book will feature unique centre page artwork hand-drawn by Lydon, and be signed by the man himself. Elsewhere, there will be photographs, almost all of which have never been published before, plus a twelve-inch record featuring live tracks recorded on Public Image Ltd's recent reunion tour and some spoken word content, including 'Mr Rotten's Nursery Rhymes'.

Says Lydon: "It's really done for the fans in a special loving kind way that only Mr Rotten knows how to do".

Excerpts from the book can be viewed at www.concertlive.co.uk/mrrottensscrapbook/, where you can also pre-order it at the knock down price of £379.

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I knew if we waited long enough there'd be a music angle to the political unrest in France, and here it is.

Lady Gaga has postponed two gigs in Paris due to take place this weekend because of concerns strikes and road blocks might stop her props, costumes and meat from getting to the venue. The shows have been rescheduled to 19 and 20 Dec.

Various French unions and groups have all gone a bit loopy of late because of proposals the retirement age be lifted to 62.

The good news for Gaga, who has UK gigs next month and in December, is that us Brits are much more likely to take our own government's austerity measures - which pile on a load more shit than just increasing the retirement age - on the chin without any real protest. Certainly we wouldn't jeopardise a good pop show in the name of social decency.

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Gallows have announced that they will play a special show at the Electric Ballroom in London on 17 Dec. Details are spare, except that it's going to be amazing.

The band say: "The show at the Electric Ballroom is going to be quite different to our other tour dates. It's going to be a show no one has even seen from Gallows, including ourselves. We're planning something really special. It's going to be epically epic".

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ALBUM REVIEW: Josephine Foster & The Victor Herraro Band - Anda Jaleo (Fire)
On her last album, 'Bright As A Star', singer Josephine Foster reinterpreted the poems of Emily Dickinson, that doyen of sexually repressed and intensely lonely verse, as folky laments. On 'Anda Jaleo' she does the same to the work of Federico Garcia Lorca.

The album's eleven sparse, meditative tracks are re-imaginings of a series of songs written by one of Spain's eminent and most enduring writers - songs that were banned under Franco's reign. Having no Spanish myself, and only being already familiar with Garcia Lorca's play 'The House Of Bernard Alba', the intricacies of the album's lyrics are lost on me. As a result the record, for the uninitiated, becomes an exercise in guitar and vocal interplay and is, for the large part, somewhat dull.

Castanets crackle in the background every so often and the odd harp is plucked, but the emphasis is on Foster's delicate voice (and it is, to be fair to the album, a beautiful, haunting, crackly 78rpm voice) and how it intermingles with classic flamenco guitar. This combination faithfully evokes visions of Spanish plazas at dusk, all flouncy skirts, olive skin and cold sangria. But sometimes it's nicer to have those memories as memories, rooted firmly in time and place, than as an uneventful folk record.

Foster's intentions should be applauded but not necessarily enjoyed. JAB

Physical release: 4 Oct
Press contact: Hermana PR

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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You can sleep soundly this weekend, people, because the repackaged version of Michael Buble's 'Crazy Love' album will be sold by Tesco after all.

As previously reported, Warner UK top man boss bloke Christian Tattersfield told Music Week earlier this week that his company wouldn't be supplying new releases to the supermarket giant because the retailer was making unreasonable demands in a review of the two firm's trading terms.

But when Music Week spoke to Tesco, its entertainments man seemed confused by Tattersfield's statement, saying that as far as he was concerned negotiations between the two companies were progressing nicely.

Anyway, whatever the dibbins was going on, both sides are now happy again. A Warner spokesman told Music Week yesterday: "Following further discussions this week, we're pleased to say we have agreed satisfactory trading terms with Tesco. As a result, their stores will be stocking our fantastic line-up of forthcoming releases".

Though, more worryingly, still no word on whether Tesco's Shoreditch branch will ever start stocking Cheshire Cheese again.

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BMG Rights Management will launch in Australia next year, the company has announced.

According to Billboard, Tim Prescott, who previously worked for the old BMG record company (which is now part of Sony Music, of course) in the Asia Pacific region, is advising the new BMG on its arrival down under. The new BMG is more focused on the publishing side of the music industry, though in theory is interested in all kinds of music rights. It has been growing quite rapidly since equity group KKR joined German media giant Bertelsmann in the venture.

In related news, the MD of UK music publisher Stage Three Music, which was acquired by BMG earlier this year, is leaving the company. Stage Three's London office closed this week with its team moving to BMG's UK HQ, but top man Steve Lewis has announced he will not be joining them. That said, in an email to his staff he insisted his departure was not acrimonious, praising BMG bosses for being "gracious and generous" in the way they have merged his company into theirs.

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Previously reported new bands platform Tunited, which is backed by Midge Ure, has announced a tie up with In The City, with the two organisations due to stage some new talent events over the next year ahead of ITC 2011.

The first collaboration between the two organisations will take place early next year and see five acts that have signed up to Tunited being chosen to play a Tunited/In The City showcase event in London.

Confirming the partnership, Tunited MD Matt Stanley told CMU: "I am very pleased to be working closely with Phil Coen, the COO for In The City, to establish some online and offline projects that will begin early in 2011. We hope to be able to announce a timetable of events and projects in the next few months, that will begin with our 'Tunited - In The City' gig in London early next year".

More at www.tunited.com, I reckon.

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The current edition of Future Publishing's Metal Hammer is another novelty issue. Or "event issue" to use their words. Following editions with metal and 3D covers, and another covered in blood (not real, presumably), the November issue comes in a box that talks.

Inside the box, as well as the magazine, you will find a hat and badge promoting the new album from symphonic black metal dudes Dimmu Borgir, 'Abrahadabra', and when you open the packaging the band's frontman Shagrath speaks to you. It's metal, he probably tells you to kill a chicken, right "fuck" on your knee, and then carefully sew a fabric badge onto your neat little canvas bag.

Metal Hammer Editor Alexander Milas told CMU: "Dimmu Borgir are an enigma - one of those bands who've risen from an underground scene in Norway to become a household name for metalheads. Their latest album is as breathtaking as it is ambitious, so what better way to toast their return than with something fittingly demonic?"

The Dimmu Borgir special edition of Metal Hammer is out now.

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It's not really clear whether The Fall's Mark E Smith likes Mumford & Sons or not.

Recalling a recent festival where both bands were playing, he tells Australia's Brag magazine: "We were playing a festival in Dublin the other week. There was this other group warming up in the next sort of chalet, and they were terrible. I said, 'Shut them cunts up', and they were still warming up, so I threw a bottle at them. My band said, 'That's the Sons of Mumford or something, they're number five in the charts!' I just thought they were a load of retarded Irish folk singers".

Elsewhere in the interview, Smith also says that he's left Domino, the record label which released The Fall's latest album, 'Your Future Our Clutter', earlier this year. Ben Lovett from Mumford & Sons owns a record label, maybe he could sign them up.

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According to TorrentFreak, a debate is ongoing among the Pirate Parties International community about launching a server into space where they could host Pirate Bay style file-sharing services outside the jurisdiction of any pesky courts with their tedious copyright infringement rules.

As long term readers may remember, years ago The Pirate Bay proposed buying Sealand, a big metal platform in international waters off the British mainland of dubious legal status, which in theory would put any TPB operation outside the remit of any European court. More recently the Swedish Pirate Party said that if it won a seat in the country's parliament it would host the Pirate Bay on parliamentary servers, which enjoy some immunity from Swedish laws. Alas, the party didn't win any seats at the Swedish general election.

But the idea of having a file-sharing service based beyond the law is still being discussed. According to Torrentfreak, which has been monitoring the discussions, putting a server at sea (pirate radio style) has been mentioned, as has basing a website in a balloon floating above the earth, and the slightly more ambitious 'put a Pirate Bay satellite into space' plan. Others have proposed setting up a crowd sourcing page to raise funds for such an initiative.

Of course, given The Pirate Bay has managed to stay online despite numerous civil and criminal court rulings against it, and various attempts to seize its servers, I'm not sure an out of this world solution for keeping file-sharing networks online is really required.

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Not got time to read this season's must read memoir, Justin Bieber's Pulitzer Prize winning autobiography 'First Step 2 Forever: My Story'? Never fear, Bieber's fellow countryman, Canadian actor Gordin Pinscent, has picked out some of the best bits to share with you.


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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Eddy Temple-Morris
Paul Vig
Club Tipper
George Osbourne
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