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CMU Info
Top Stories
Terra Firma v Citigroup: Another cut back on possible damages
Promo CDs are killing the Earth
Cage Against The Machine supported charities announced
In The Pop Hospital
Lily Allen has second miscarriage
Danny Baker fighting cancer
Reunions & Splits
Women take time off after on-stage bust up
Release News
Patrick Wolf announces return
White Lies announce new album
Gigs & Tours News
NATO cancels Arcade Fire gig
Robyn to play 'secret' show on Wednesday
Foreign Office promote The Quiet Life
EP review: Owen Pallett - A Swedish Love Story (Domino)
Talks, Debates & Conventions
Next MusicTank next week
The Music Business
Chrysalis in merger talks
Warner UK unveils One More Tune
New Tokyo-based music firm recruits top team
The Media Business
Channel 5 to shun 'commercial music'
Bauer looks to merge Kiss stations
And finally...
Soulja Boy gig cancelled after rowdiness
MC Hammer attacks Jay-Z

Rodrigo Sánchez and Gabriela Quintero, aka Rodrigo y Gabriela, specialise in rocking the fuck out on acoustic guitars. With an arsenal of original instrumental tracks and metal covers, the duo have built up an eager following for their records and live shows alike. Latest album, '11:11', was released last year, and they begin a five gig residency at the Shepherds Bush Empire in London tonight. We caught up with Sánchez to ask some questions.

Q1 How did you start out making music?
We used to play in a thrash metal band in Mexico City called 'Terra Acida' many, many years ago. The band split, and we got acoustic guitars and went to the beach. When we tired of that we got on a plane and flew to Dublin. We didn't know anyone in Ireland, we just heard it was a good place for musicians. We met our manager at a Damien Rice gig, and things developed from there onwards.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
'11:11' was inspired by eleven extraordinary musical talents who we love and respect. From Jimi Hendrix to Carlos Santana via Le Trio Joubran and Michel Camilo, some are better known than others; but they all have a unique gift and succeeded without compromising their artistic vision.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
Usually I'll come up with a melody and I'll play it to Gab and she'll work on the rhythmic accompaniment, and then we'll practice, practice, practice. We have a good studio at home in Ixtapa now, which is very useful when you have a new idea you want to capture quickly.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
See the answer to question two! And add Astor Piazolla, Metallica, Al Di Meola, Pantera, classic rock and jazz rock.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
We are a duo from Mexico who play acoustic instrumental music which is a fusion of rock and world influences. It's a bit crazy, lots of energy and it's great for dancing to. It's not flamenco!

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
'11:11' has been out for a year now, it has been well received and our fans seem to like it. The touring cycle this time won't be as long as with the previous album; so we are looking forward to getting back into the studio next year to start work on the next record.

MORE>> www.rodgab.com
Various Production, or Various, as we're supposed to call them but don't because it just makes the whole thing too confusing, have been knocking about the place being all mysterious since 2003. Their debut album, 'The World Is Gone', arrived in 2006, mixing dubstep with other genres (mainly folk), resulting in everyone gathering in huddles and whispering about this being the sort of thing dubstep needed to do.

Having gone quiet since last year, Various returned last month with the first in a new monthly series of singles, available exclusively through their website. Part two arrived yesterday, a cover of The xx's 'Infinity', which is available from www.various.co.uk now, along with a Jonquil cover of the same track. Although it possesses many of the same sparse, soulful qualities as the original, it's at the same time completely different. Listen at the SoundCloud link below.


Authority Communications Ltd are looking for a full-time Website Editor to join our creative team. Authority manage and promote websites and social media platforms for some of the biggest names and brands in the music industry. You will need:

- An ability to write creative, compelling, lively copy in a variety of styles and to very tight deadlines.
- A good working knowledge of html and Photoshop.
- A thorough understanding of social networks, media platforms and online music stores of all kinds.
- Experience of managing client relationships.
- A love of music.

If this is you then please send your CV, plus two examples of your writing to david@authoritycommunications.com
Mute require a forward thinking innovative marketeer to create and execute marketing plans across the breadth of their roster. Candidates will ideally be from a label marketing or relevant creative, fast moving industry.

You will be organised and efficient, driven by a love for music and the enthusiasm to look at new and creative ways of working. With responsibility for the planning of all marketing activity across the label and working closely with the A&R, promo, sales and digital teams, you will be financially aware and able to deliver campaigns on time and on budget. Excellent communication skills and extensive digital awareness are essential. Salary commensurate with experience.

Apply by email: ApplytoMute@Mute.com
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The team from Terra Firma were dealt another set back in their big litigation against Citigroup yesterday, when Judge Jed Rakoff further reduced the potential pay out for the equity group if it win its case against the US bank.

As previously reported, Terra Firma claims that Citigroup basically tricked the company into bidding too high and too soon for EMI back in 2007, leaving it and its boss man Gary 'The Guy' Hands saddled with a dud asset that just haemorrhages cash. Gary says Citigroup's main man David 'The Worm' Wormsley lied about another bidder. The Worm, of course, says he did no such thing.

Ahead of the trial there was speculation Gary would push for in excess of seven billion in damages if he won his lawsuit, a pay off that would more than cover the losses his company has made from the EMI project, while compensating for the bad press the equity man and his team would inevitably get from any court hearing.

But to push damages that high Gary needed Rakoff to allow the jury hearing the case to consider so called 'lost profits' - the money Terra Firma could have made had it invested its cash in a profitable concern instead of EMI - and 'punitive damages', basically damages awarded in civil cases to punish a guilty party which has behaved dishonestly.

Rakoff last week rejected the 'lost profits' method for calculating damages, refusing to allow Terra Firma's 'forensic accountant' to even discuss it in front of jurors. And yesterday evening he ruled punitive damages would not be considered either.

You get the impression Rakoff himself doesn't feel much sympathy to either party in this legal squabble, and continuing on that theme, according to Reuters, he last night described the whole case as "a cat fight between two rich companies" that did not involve a threat to the public. For those reasons, he said, punitive damages were not relevant.

This greatly reduces the potential for Terra Firma to cash in at the end of this trial, even if it wins. And that wasn't the only bad news for Gary. Aside from ruling on damages yesterday, Rakoff also decided that one half of the equity group's case - that of fraudulent concealment - should be thrown out, leaving the jury to only consider the charge of fraudulent misrepresentation.

Back in the court room, more Citigroup emails were put on a screen to show that the bank knew Terra Firma's EMI acquisition was a mistake even before the deal had been completed. One credit officer within the bank back in 2007 compared EMI to a "terribly ill cancer patient", while another, Ian Cockerill, who testified yesterday, cautioned his colleagues regarding the size of the loan they were handing Hands to enable the EMI buy.

According to the Financial Times, he wrote at the time: "Oh dear, Oh dear! These must be very valuable relationships for us to have extended [the loan] again. I can see us taking a huge loss on this deal".

Terra Firma's legal team, presumably, are questioning why Citigroup - as advisors to the equity company - didn't raise these concerns at the time. Though the bankers might argue Gary wouldn't have listened even if they did.

Summing up is expected to begin today, with the jury due to being deliberations tomorrow.

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If the independent sector was to stop sending out any physical promo CDs to journalists, DJs and radio people tomorrow - providing digital promos instead - then 1525 tonnes less CO2 would be produced annually, according to research undertaken by the music industry's eco-body Julie's Bicycle on behalf of record label trade bodies AIM and the BPI. The UK indie sector's promo CD output is, the report says, producing three times as much CO2 as the energy, water and waste emissions of a large arena.

The research was instigated following a proposal made at the 'Ten Big Ideas' session AIM staged as part of their tenth anniversary celebrations last year. The findings are interesting, though, and without wanting to diss the lovely people at AIM or the brilliant organisation that is Julie's Bicycle, I'm not really sure they are that useful. Of course, it's more eco-friendly to send journalists MP3s over the net than CDs in jiffy bags, I don't think anyone would dispute that.

And even the 75% of music journalists surveyed by CMU earlier this year who said they preferred physical CDs to digital promos would admit there are sound environmental as well as perfectly understandable financial reasons as to why labels might want to go the digital route when it comes to the music they send the media. And while some of those 75% of journalists just don't like change, while others possibly don't like the idea of losing the option to supplement their meagre (or non-existent) income by selling on some promo CDs, many will accept that a digital promo future is inevitable.

The real problem at the moment is that nearly all the digital promo systems used by record companies - albeit mainly the majors - are shit, and have clearly been designed by IT firms and label execs who had no idea what happens to a CD once it lands on an editor's desk, and didn't think it might be useful to ask someone in the media about it before enforcing unusable systems on the journalists they are trying to impress.

True, some indies are developing some very good digital promo services, though realistically any system whereby every label uses a different digital promo platform - whether they be proprietary or bought in - is going to be resisted by the majority of journalists, who don't have time to be getting their heads around a plethora of different websites and software packages, most of which are terribly designed.

A better system would be for all labels to make all their promo music available to all credible middle-men preview platforms on a pay-per-delivery arrangement, and then let the market decide. The platforms which actually work will get used by the journalists and make money, while the others (like the ones the majors currently use) will just eventually disappear.

With all that in mind, I can't help thinking it would have been better if AIM's research had focused on how to make digital promos work, rather than on how much less carbon will be pumped into the atmosphere if and when that is achieved. But still, perhaps now these scary carbon stats have been released, someone out there will do that work.

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The charities which will be supported by the previously reported Cage Against The Machine campaign, which aims to get John Cage's silent composition '4'33''' to Christmas number one have been announced.

The five charitable organisations are Youth Music, the British Tinnitus Association, CALM, Nordoff Robbins and Sound & Music. Fans can now vote for which becomes the 'lead' charity, receiving a larger proportion of sales income from a specially recorded version of the track and ad revenue from the campaign's website.

Cage Against The Machine organiser Dave Hilliard told CMU: "We felt that the inclusion of charities was the only meaningful way to progress the campaign. We want people to feel involved in the charity process, to get excited about what we are trying to do. It's only a small amount for the individual to buy the track, but collectively it could make a big difference to the chosen charities".

As previously reported, the British Tinnitus Association was put forward by Xfm presenter and CMU Columnist Eddy Temple-Morris, who is an ambassador for the charity and a supporter of the CATM campaign.

Temple-Morris wrote last week: "It occurred to me that whenever Cage's piece drops, and you're supposed to appreciate the sounds around you, that one in ten people in the UK - including me, Adam F, Rocky from X-Press 2, and countless others - would only be able to hear their own tinnitus. Because, as I keep saying, sufferers of this awful condition will never hear silence again".

For more information, go to: www.catm.co.uk

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Lily Allen has suffered a miscarriage, a spokesman for the singer announced yesterday. Allen was around six months pregnant. She previously lost a child during pregnancy in 2008.

In a statement, the spokesman said: "It is with great sadness that we have to confirm that Lily Allen and Sam Cooper have lost their baby. The couple ask that their privacy be respected and that they be left alone at this deeply distressing time. No further comment will be made".

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Popular radio presenter Danny Baker has been diagnosed with cancer, it has been revealed. Baker, a presenter on both 5 Live and BBC London, apologised to his listeners for not revealing the reason for some recent absences sooner, while confirming he was about to begin a course of chemotherapy.

Writing on his Facebook profile, Baker said: "Hello cats and kittens. Apologies for the cloak and d over recent weeks. However, as it appears this is going to continue for the foreseeable I ought to offer up some sort of breadcrumbs trail as to what's going on. After a pretty mouldy diagnosis a month back I finally begin chemotherapy on Monday with further radiotherapy from January".

He continued: "Once the quacks have soundly thrashed this thing I shall return like a rare gas and as if out of a trap. In the meantime I am watching Tommy Steele box sets and urge you to keep yakking up a storm and laugh extra loud at the incumbents".

It is not known which form of cancer Baker is suffering from. Needless to say, there's been a plethora of support and good wishes issued from both listeners and other radio stars, Baker having always been something of a radio DJ's radio DJ.

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Art-rocky Canadians Women have announced that they are cancelling all upcoming tour dates in order to rest after the soundcheck for a show in their home country last Friday resulted in a fist fight between the two brothers in the band, vocalist and guitarist Pat and bassist Matthew Flegel.

An audience member told Exclaim: "Pat started throwing punches at his brother during their set-up and soundcheck. Full on 'break it up' brawl between the brothers". Meanwhile guitarist Chris Reimer reportedly later announced that the performance would be their "last show as a band".

The band's manager, Ian Russell, subsequently issued a statement, saying: "With a heavy heart, we regret to say that the band Women is exhausted and are in need of a break from touring. They have experienced a lot of stress recently, and this culminated in a disastrous public conflict on Friday. Band members have been suffering from poor health, and are in near-exhaustion; as of today, all upcoming shows have been cancelled".

He continued: "We feel that it's necessary to emphasise that this is a very difficult time for the band, and is not a trivial decision for a group that has spent as much time touring as they have. The band is a close-knit group of friends that have known each other since elementary school, and the personal health of these individuals forces this decision. The band would appreciate some privacy as they sort things out and recover".

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Patrick Wolf has announced that he will release his new album in May next year, just a year and a half later than originally expected. Before that, he'll release a new single, 'Time Of My Life'. And before that, he'll play some gigs in December.

Of the new single, Wolf says: "'Time Of My Life' is a song that I began writing at the end of a relationship in 2006 and then finished three years later during a temporary break up in my current relationship. The new album has a direct narrative about love and optimism surviving through adversity and recession. I wanted to celebrate the love and hope I have found in the last few years".

It has also been announced that Wolf is the first signing to Hideout Recordings, a new label set up by Keith Wozencroft and Dan Keeling, which operates as a joint venture with Mercury/Universal Records.

The December gigs are these:

5 Dec: Cardiff, Club Ifor Bach
6 Dec: Guildford, Boileroom
7 Dec: London, Bloomsbury Ballroom

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White Lies have announced that they will release their new album, 'Ritual', through Fiction Records on 17 Jan. The ten track album was produced by Alan Moulder and will be preceded by a single, 'Bigger Than Us', on 3 Jan.

Here's the tracklist:

Is Love?
Bigger Than Us
Peace & Quiet
Holy Ghost
Turn the Bells
Power & The Glory
Bad Love
Come Down

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Arcade Fire have been forced to cancel a gig in Lisbon on 18 Nov because of security concerns relating to the NATO summit taking place in the city the next day.

In a statement, the band's manager Scott Rodger said that promoters had been told at the weekend they would not now be able to use the Atlantic Pavilion venue that had been booked. Attempts were made to shift the show forward but to no avail. It seems Arcade Fire just attract too many terrorists as fans.

Rodger explained: "The band are disappointed to be forced into this situation but there's nothing more we can do. We will refund all tickets and we'll endeavour to get back to see our fans in Portugal as soon as we can".

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I can't believe we've reached this point in human existence without being able to come up with a better name for shows announced at short notice than 'secret'.

For one thing, it would save us journalists all the hours lost pointing out that there is nothing secret whatsoever about these shows. Then we'd all have more time to make up nonsense genre names.

Anyway, Robyn is playing a secret show on Wednesday. It will, at the very least, be in a secret location in London. I hope it's not at my flat, I won't have time to tidy before then.

To apply for tickets go to www.myspace.com/secretshowsuk

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The Foreign Office are launching a record label and club night. With all the cuts, that seems rather extravagant.

No, not THE Foreign Office, I'm talking about the band Foreign Office. And yes, they have announced that they will launch Quiet Life, a new label and night, next week, on 11 Nov at The Luxe in Spitalfields Market. The first event will also double up as a launch party for the band's new single 'On Repeat', which is released next Monday.

The band plan to play at the Quiet Life club each month, while inviting other bands and DJs to also appear. Next week rocketnumbernine will play live, while Minkioni, Russell Club Records and Jamie Blanco will all DJ.

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EP REVIEW: Owen Pallett - A Swedish Love Story (Domino)
I'm still finding it hard to refer to Owen Pallett as Owen Pallett and not Final Fantasy, the Canadian's moniker for his first two solo albums; yet, the more I hear of his new material, the more I am able to distinguish the separation between old and new. They are not utterly detached from one another; Owen Pallett is Final Fantasy's older, more world-wise cousin, dropping the child-like wonder and almost perverted frankness of his storytelling and instead projecting with a kind of self-assuredness that the old material just really couldn't quite reach.

'A Swedish Love Story' is lush and exhilarating, a four-song EP of such grandeur that it is able to stand against Pallett's larger body of work as a peak. Opener 'A Man With No Ankles' is joyous, poppy and multi-layered, with more loops than I can remember hearing in previous work, and a greater appreciation for lavish and creative layering of strings and vocals that really gets the heart going. 'Don't Stop' ends the EP on a slightly less excitable note, but remains a piece of beauty and uniqueness in its interesting use of a drum loop, something that was almost never found in Pallett's earlier work.

I've been a huge fan of Pallett's for a number of years now, and to see him produce music to this standard and elevation not only elates me but makes me thirsty for more. TW

Physical release: 27 Sep
Press contact: Domino IH

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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The next MusicTank Think Tank event takes place in London next week, and will look at the potential of social media, apps, location-based games, augmented reality and other such techie widgets as marketing and fan engagement tools for music types.

The event will bring together some leading names from the tech industry to share their insights as to what is now possible in the digital world, and discuss how the music business could and should be using the latest set of techie tools in their marketing campaigns. Meanwhile Imogen Heap's manager Mark Wood will discuss his recent digital marketing ventures.

As the speakers mainly come from newish digital firms, the companies represented generally have cute but slightly abstract names, like Yuza, Ooh Brilliant, Six To Start and Mobile Roadie. So I guess you'll just have to show up next Tuesday to find out what exactly they do.

It all takes place in the PRS For Music basement on Tuesday, 9 Nov, at 6.30pm. More here: www.musictank.co.uk/events/brave-new-world

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Chrysalis might be up for sale again. Or at least interested in merger proposals.

The independent publisher last let it be known that it was interested in takeover approaches just before the credit crunch, not long after it had offloaded its radio business to Global Radio. But only one formal bid was ever made - by EMI, which the Chrysalis board considered too low - and then, with the economy collapsing all around, the publisher's top guard put the idea of selling out or merging on hold.

But yesterday Team Chrysalis confirmed they were in "early stage discussions with a number of parties regarding merger opportunities", though cautioned that "discussions are at a very preliminary stage and there can be no certainty that an offer will be made for Chrysalis or as to the terms on which any offer would be made". The statement followed speculation that the company's Chairman and co-founder Chris Wright was participating in merger talks.

The Chrysalis board's statement did not name any of the possible buyers or merger partners, though it is widely assumed the acquisitive BMG Rights Management and/or Imagem Music are definite contenders. The company's share price rose 24% on the back on the merger and acquisition chatter.

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That is to say Warner UK has unveiled a new dance imprint called One More Tune. I'm not sure having literally just 'one more tune' to unveil would be much of a business model.

Warner's new label will focus on mainstream dance music, and look to develop long-term relationships with groovy dance music makers and to strike up 'rights partnerships' (whatever they might be) around single track dancefloor fillers. The imprint will also work with Warner's Rhino division on dance compilations, it having already released compos using the Gatecrasher and Cream brands in recent years.

The new venture will be headed up by Anton Partridge, previously of Universal Music, but more recently founder and boss of AFP Management & Publishing, a company he will continue to run alongside the new venture, reporting directly to Warner UK top man Christian Tattersfield. Also on board for the new division is producer and A&R man Mark Hadfield, who will be Label Manager.

Early projects will include one track alliances with Adrian Lux, Fedde Le Grand, Paul Oakenfold and Benny Benassi, plus a triple disk super-club compilation involving Pacha as well as Gatecrasher and Cream.

Confirming the new venture, the aforementioned Warner UK boss man Tattersfield told CMU: "Anton and Mark are an excellent team, combining talent-spotting and hit-making skills with marketing and commercial expertise. Having them on-board will strengthen the range of our A&R activities and our commitment to finding and breaking the most extraordinary artists in all genres".

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Legendary drummer Harvey Mason and UK dance pioneer James Horrocks have been appointed to the board of a new Tokyo-based music company with management, production, publishing, marketing, distribution and label services ambitions, Live Beyond.

Set up by Tokyo-based businessman Ken Fridley, who is also a drummer, he has appointed Mason to the role of Chief Creative Officer and Horrocks to the role of Vice-President. Mason will be based in LA and Horrocks in London, giving the new venture reach into three territories.

On the label management front the company is already working with house labels Farplane and Expansion House, while the new recruits will be looking for other labels and artists to work with. Although having a global focus, one of Beyond Live's particular USPs is its strong Japanese base, which means it can represent Western acts and labels in that market.

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The new management at Channel 5 are encouraging the producers of programmes aired on the network to only use 'original music' - in which the broadcaster can itself own the rights - so the telly company doesn't have to pay any royalties to collecting societies PPL or PRS.

The Guardian quote sources who say that bosses at the network have basically said that all 'commercial music' - ie songs and recordings owned by publishers and labels - will be banned as part of wide-ranging budget cutbacks, though a spokeswoman for the channel denied it was a blanket rule, while trying to spin that the new policy was about Channel 5 supporting the creative community by commissioning new tunes.

The spokeswoman told reporters: "Channel 5 plan to commission more original music as they have excellent contacts in the creative industry. There are no plans to avoid the use of commercial music entirely and it is not a case of not wanting to pay PRS For Music".

As previously reported, Channel 5 was recently bought by Daily Express owner Richard Desmond, who is now attempting something previously considered impossible - making the channel even shitter and even more low rent than before. Though, if anyone can, Desmond can. And I guess muzak soundtracking every show will help.

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Bauer Radio is following the lead of rivals Global Radio and GMG Radio in turning a small network of local radio stations into a quasi-national station.

Bauer has asked media regulator OfCom for permission to turn its three Kiss stations, in London, East Anglia and the South West, into one service, which would also broadcast nationally on the DAB digital network.

Currently the three Kiss stations carry locally produced programmes, but new broadcasting rules introduced earlier this year have reduced some of the local programming obligations in British commercial radio.

GMG Radio have already merged its various Smooth FM stations in England into one service, while Global Radio will rebrand a load of its local stations as Capital FM in the New Year, with most programmes on those channels coming from London. It has already done something similar with its Heart network.

It remains to be seen if OfCom allow Bauer to turn Kiss into a quasi-nationwide service, though most think regulator will.

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Rapper whipper snapper Soulja Boy had to cancel a gig in Washington DC last weekend after his audience became a bit rowdy and police ordered the venue where he was due to play to axe the show.

The Boy's performance at the city's Ibiza club was delayed because management at the venue failed to come up with the agreed fee. But the rapper insists he was going to perform anyway, despite the lack of cash, you know, to keep the fans happy. But by the time he was ready to do that, the police had arrived.

Soulja tweeted: "I'm so sorry to disappoint my DC fans but the promoters did not have all the money. I still tried to perform but I couldn't even get inside! I tried to perform for free! But it was so many fights at the side door that the police shut it down! My apologies, I will be back!"

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Beefs in hip hop are generally quite tedious, and mostly laid on for promotional purposes. This one, however, is brilliant. MC Hammer has penned a new track, and filmed an accompanying video, after taking offence to lyrics added to a new Kanye West track, 'So Appalled', by Jay-Z.

Jay-Z rapped this: "And Hammer went broke so you know I'm more focused. I lost 30 mil so I spent another 30, cause unlike Hammer 30 million can't hurt me".

It's not clear if Hammer was offended by the slight against his ability to smartly invest money, or Jay-Z's vulgar display of wealth. Whatever, he yesterday uploaded his video for a track called 'Better Run Run (Official Jay-Z Diss)'. That's right, it's an official diss.

The video sees Jay-Z (well, a lookalike) chased through some woods by the devil while Hammer threatens to "knock him out". Eventually Jay-Z stumbles across Hammer by a lake, who fends off Satan before turning his attention to his rival and - yeah, you know what's coming - he baptises him.

Watch the video here: youtu.be/XFtQML2O5B0

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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Eddy Temple-Morris
Paul Vig
Club Tipper
Harriet Harman
Head Of Diversity (Non-Ginger)

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