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CMU Info
Top Stories
We7 revamps, pushes personalised radio to the fore
Hackney studio's rabbit saved, council urged to reconsider street art policies
In The Pop Courts
Fela! producers sued by Kuti's biographer
Release News
Gruff Rhys explains album title with art installation
Gigs & Tours News
Ben Folds announces Lonely Avenue tour
Rolo Tomassi announce free Christmas show
Rusko escapes burning building to begin tour
Festival News
Festival line-up update
Album review: Pet Shop Boys - Ultimate (EMI/Parlophone)
The Music Business
Festival Republic says tout-targeting a success at Leeds Fest
Live Nation acquires French ticketing agency
The Digital Business
Unofficial new version of LimeWire appears online
Childnet launches new downloading guide
Yahoo's music man goes to AOL
Topspin says bundles with physical product most lucrative
CharmFactory and Slipstream team up on social enterprise
The Media Business
East Midlands Heart will soon be GEM
And finally...
Is there copyright infringing content on Kiss website?
Hammer declares victory in Jay-Z beef

Formed in 1993, Jimmy Eat World released their eponymous debut album the following year, though it was with their third (and second for EMI/Capitol) record, 'Clarity', that they first made real critical and commercial headway. Moving to Universal/Polydor in 2001, they released 'Bleed American', which sold more than a million copies worldwide and earned them two UK top 40 singles. The band's seventh album, 'Invented', was released in September, and the band begin a UK tour this Saturday. We caught up with bassist Rick Burch to ask the Same Six.

Q1 How did you start out making music?
I first started out making music when I was ten or eleven years old, by sneaking into my older brother's bedroom without him knowing and borrowing his bass guitar. I liked making a racket on it because I thought he was cool, I liked music and making noise. He would always get mad and give me a hard time about his guitar being out of tune!

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
Lyrically it comes from [frontman] Jim [Adkins]. He was inspired by a photographer called Cindy Sherman and her 'Untitled Film Stills' series. These are images that look like they come from movies, but you're not told what is happening, so they are really open to interpretation. It'll be a girl in a certain setting - on the street or in an apartment - and you can tell they're in the middle of something, but it's up to you to put together what she's been through, to create a story around these images.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
There's no one set process. But sometimes we'll be jamming in our rehearsal space and we'll have an initial idea, or something will happen, and that will build from a melody into a song. Or someone will come in with a strong melody already thought out, or one of us will have a song pretty much complete, and we'll just fine tune it.

Q4 Which other artists influence your work?
I've been listening to Grizzly Bear a lot lately, but I'm not sure it influences me a great deal. There's no one record or artist that has influenced this album. As more time goes by we've become more independent from outside influences.

Q5 What would you say to somebody experiencing to your music for the first time?
Approach it with an open mind, forget any preconceptions or anything that you may have heard about us, and just listen to it as music. I'd describe us as a four-piece rock band, drums, guitars, vocals, just rock n roll!

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and the future?
I hope that some people like this record as much as we do, and that we can meet them when they come to our shows. That's about as much as I can hope for really!

MORE>> www.jimmyeatworld.com
Val-d'Isére, aka producer Sean Bamberger and singer Carrie Flower, are a duo based in London and Leeds respectively. Although their music is heavily electronic, they go out of their way to give their sound a warmth and feeling sometimes lost when slick technology is applied. Not that slick technology has anything to do with it. Their equipment is old, they have no time for quantizing, and their drum beats are sampled off YouTube videos.

The first taste of the project comes in the form of 'Pinpoint', a free download available from their Bandcamp page. The above description may have suggested a slapdash attitude, but this is far from the case. The warmth and feeling they were aiming for is very much here, as is great songwriting talent and some simply gorgeous vocals from Flower. And look, she even made the end of that sentence pretty.


Domino Recordings, home to some of the most exciting music around today including Arctic Monkeys and Franz Ferdinand, is seeking an International Promotions Manager. The successful candidate would be responsible for all aspects of international promotion including press, radio and TV for the whole label roster - working closely with our international partners and sometimes directly with the int'l media. Minimum two years experience with artists, managers, record labels and international media is required. The position is based in our London office.

Applicants should send their CV and cover letter to: internationalpromotions@dominorecordco.com
The Zeitgeist Agency are flying. We are a fully integrated communications agency representing premium brands, festivals and artists and we need some help with the most exciting campaigns in music.

Are you the best?
We want the best...
Not the most experienced. Not the coolest. Not the most intelligent.
Just the best.

You need to be bursting with ideas, have unrivalled contacts, work your heart out and always be the last person standing. If you think you fit the bill for either of these roles then we want to hear from you. You have 200 words to impress. Please use them wisely and email paulkennedy@thezeitgeistagency.com
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Spotify competitors We7 have this morning announced a revamp that will see their Pandora-style personalised radio service pushed to the fore. Bosses there say that the move has been motivated by user stats that show the personalised-radio streams have been their most popular service since they were added into the mix earlier this year.

Ironically, the personalised radio concept was one of the earliest online music business models to appear in the market, with Launch (later bought by Yahoo!) first appearing in 1999 and Pandora the following year. Both were available in the UK for a while, but eventually became US-only services because of prohibitive music licensing costs in Europe. Last.fm has also operated in this area for a long time, of course, and geeks with very long memories may remember the short-lived Chrysalis-owned personalised radio service Puremix.

The difference between personalised radio and Spotify-type set ups is that, with the former, you type an artist or song name into a box and press play, and then the service plays a non-stop random stream of music by the selected artist, and other artists considered by the system - according to some preset criteria or other - to be similar. Although there is normally the facility to skip and blacklist songs, users don't themselves prescribe what they will listen to.

With Spotify - and what has been the main We7 service until now - you select a specific song or album, press play, and the chosen record will stream in order, in full. When it's finished it stops, although more recently We7 automatically took users into a personalised-stream based on the previously listened to album. Of course, both Spotify and We7 enable users who want more variety to pre-programme their own playlists, though We7 says user data suggests most music fans would rather someone else did that for them.

Today's revamp at We7 doesn't mean any of the company's existing services are being turned off, the full on-demand listening option - both by subscription or for free with ads - remains, though they are calling it 'request' listening so to stick with the radio analogy. But on arrival at the We7 home page it is very clear that the Pandora-style service is now at the core of the company's offer.

Of course, cynics will assume the move is less motivated by user demand and more by cost savings, or a desire to be differentiated from Spotify. In an interview with PaidContent, We7 boss Steve Purdham admitted that the licensing costs associated with the personalised radio service were a third of those incurred by offering truly on-demand music and that therefore the 'internet-radio' element of what his company offers is much cheaper to run. Though he added that they ad rates his firm could charge on internet-radio were also generally less than with fully on-demand.

It's possibly not surprising that many users prefer the radio stream product to the truly on-demand service, even though the latter offers much more freedom. With a Spotify-style service, while access to so much music on demand is initially awe-inspiring, deciding what to listen to when presented with so much music can be tricky, and setting up playlists is time consuming. And, of course, when many people listen to their own MP3 collections, rather than picking an album they just listen on shuffle.

We7's move, therefore, may be a clever one. It still offers the truly on-demand functions, so can still say "whatever Spotify can do, we can do too", but it can then push people towards the more cost efficient personalised radio option which most users may secretly prefer anyway. We7 also has the added bonus that while personalised radio is offered within the Spotify player, it's the one thing the Swedish streaming music giant isn't very good at. Job done.

Confirming the repositioning of his services, Purdham told CMU this morning: "In the UK, 51 million people use radio as their preferred method of accessing music. Music consumption is moving rapidly to an internet base but in the world of radio there has been little or no innovation to capitalise on this new potential. The internet has been viewed as just another traditional radio device. Great pioneering work done by Last.fm in the UK and Pandora in the US has shown that the potential is much bigger and We7 intend to go further to deliver real benefits to the next generation of internet radio listeners".

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Owners of a recording studio in Hackney are celebrating after their local council reversed a decision to white wash over an artwork painted on the side of their building.

Last month The Premises studio in north east London was told by Hackney Council to remove the large rabbit painting on the side of its building, put there with the permission of the studio's owners by Belgian street artist ROA. The council deemed the marvellous twelve foot painting of a rabbit to be dangerous graffiti and wanted it gone, despite hundreds of locals saying how much they liked it. Council officials threatened to paint over the artwork themselves and bill the owners of The Premises for the work.

The studio launched an online petition to save the artwork, which more than 2000 people signed in the space of a week. To be fair to the Council, it listened to the public, and owners of The Premises announced on Monday that the Council's threat to paint over the rabbit had been officially withdrawn.

The facility's Julia Craik said in a statement: "The petition to 'save the rabbit' received an astonishing amount of public support in a short period of time. At one point names were being added at a rate of one per minute and the topic trended on Twitter. Local artists, schools and residents all lent their support to demand that Hackney Council drop their threat to the painting".

She continues: "We're delighted that Hackney Council have recognised our campaign and we'd like to thank everyone for all the amazing support and work to help save our rabbit. It's a beautiful piece of street art that everyone loves and we're very glad it's here to stay".

Although Hackney Council has shown some common sense this time round, many locals are now calling on the local authority to review its approach to street art, and set up a better system for distinguishing between damaging graffiti and groundbreaking artwork that brightens up otherwise grim streets. This is, after all, the Council that painted over a popular and probably priceless Banksy cartoon that had appeared on a Blur single cover, despite the protestations of the owner of the building where the artwork was painted.

The council says that 750 locals would have to sign a petition for the issue of street art policy to be discussed at a full council meeting. It has said it will post such a petition online on 1 Dec.

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Producers of the previously reported stage musical on the life of Fela Kuti have been hit with a five million dollar lawsuit from the late Afrobeat originator's official biographer, who claims the show's creators have ripped off his book.

Carlos Moore says he was approached by the makers of 'Fela!' in 2007 and offered four grand for the stage rights to his biography. Calling that offer "grossly insufficient", he knocked them back, saying he'd need a considerably larger advance and a cut of any stage show revenues to agree to participate.

Moore claims he then heard nothing more before the opening of 'Fela!' in New York. The show, he alleges, is wholly based on his book, which was used by the musical's creators Jim Lewis and Bill T Jones without his "knowledge, authorisation or consent". He this week filed a lawsuit, claiming $5 million in damages.

Producers of the show, which is backed by Jay-Z and Will Smith among others and which opened in London last weekend, say they are shocked by the lawsuit, not least because Moore took part in the publicity junket that surrounded the show's Broadway opening, during which he praised the stage show for its "tremendous accuracy".

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Gruff Rhys will release his previously reported new solo album on 14 Feb. He has also announced that it will be called 'Hotel Shampoo', and to explain the unusual title has created an art installation.

Rhys explains: "In 1995, I began touring the world industrially as a pop musician. A gleaming new cosmos of hotel accommodation opened up for me and in an instant I was seduced by the free products available in the rooms. I hoarded these objects in a rush of mild kleptomania. Every room in my house began to amass these plastic bottles and various, hotel-related things from every continent on earth (except Antarctica). Having never kept a journal these items have become like diary entries, triggering memories of all those buildings and random people I've met and inspiring some of the songs on the album".

He continued: "As an act of revenge against the colonisation of our house, I vowed to build a hotel out of the items and sleep in it. The resulting Hotel Shampoo creation serves as a monument to the waste that's produced in our disposable age and to catalogue my transient existence".

You can watch a video of the shampoo hotel being constructed here, or you can see it for real at the Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff, where it is currently on display.

Here's the album's tracklist:

Shark Ridden Waters
Honey All Over
Sensations In The Dark
Vitamin K
Take A Sentence
Conservation Conversation
Sophie Softly
Christopher Columbus
Space Dust
At The Heart Of Love
Patterns Of Power
If We Were Words (We Would Rhyme)
Rubble Rubble

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Ben Folds will be over in the UK next February to promote his 'Lonely Avenue' album, which, as we've discussed on numerous occasions before, was written and recorded in collaboration with author Nick Hornby and released in September.

Tickets go on sale this Friday, unless you happen to be a member of the Ben Folds fanclub, in which case they're on sale now.

Tour dates:

19 Feb: Birmingham, Institute
20 Feb: London, Hammersmith Apollo
22 Feb: Southampton, Guildhall
24 Feb: Manchester, Apollo
25 Feb: Glasgow, Academy
26 Feb: Sheffield, Academy

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Rolo Tomassi have announced that they will play a free show at the Bloomsbury Ballroom in London on 19 Dec. The show will be filmed for a forthcoming documentary and live DVD, which will form part of a new record release in 2011.

Fans can apply to be part of the 500 strong audience at www.rololive.com from today.

Support at the show will come from Brontide and Japanese Voyeurs.

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Chirpy dubstep producer Rusko was forced to flee his home yesterday after his car caught fire, setting light to his house. Seemingly many of his possessions were lost in the fire, though he did escape with the hard drives containing his music in tact.

The producer posted a picture of the aftermath to Twitter: twitter.com/ruskoofficial/status/1802054855041024

Although he will presumably now have to find alternative transport, Rusko's UK and European tour dates, due to begin on Friday, will go ahead as planned.

The UK leg of the tour is as follows:

12 Nov: London, Fabric
12 Nov: Bristol, Motion
13 Nov: Manchester, Warehouse Project
15 Nov: Edinburgh, Cabaret Voltaire
16 Nov: Cardiff, CYNT
17 Nov: Southampton, Audio
17 Nov: Brighton, Audio
18 Nov: Leamington Spa, Smack
20 Nov: Liverpool, Chibuku
23 Nov: Sheffield, Tuesday Club
26 Nov: Derby, The Royal
26 Nov: Nottingham, Stealth
27 Nov: Leeds, Stylus wax:On
27 Nov: Birmingham, Institute

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BLOODSTOCK, Catton Hall, Walton-on-Trent, Derbyshire, 12-14 Aug: Symphonic metallers Therion have been added to the line-up for next year's Bloodstock Open Air festival, alongside Morbid Angel, Rhapsody Of Fire, Triptykon and headliners Immortal. www.bloodstock.uk.com

EUROSONIC NOORDERSLAG, De Oosterpoort, Groningen, Holland, 12-15 Jan: Mount Kimbie, Ólöf Arnalds, Dry The River, Gold Panda, El Guincho, Agnes Obel, Bye Bye Bicycle, Graffiti6, Kellermensch, The Vaccines and Youthless are amongst the latest acts confirmed. www.eurosonic-noorderslag.nl/en/festival/

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ALBUM REVIEW: Pet Shop Boys - Ultimate (EMI/Parlophone)
So, seven years after their 'PopArt' singles collection, here's another Pet Shop Boys best of.

This one differs from that 2003 compilation in that it's one CD rather than two, essentially compiling all the biggest hits plus two singles released from subsequent comeback-of-sorts albums 'Fundamental' and 'Yes' ('I'm With Stupid' and 'Love Etc' respectably). Obviously, anyone for whom two CDs of Pet Shop Boys music is too much needs their ears examining, but for first time or casual fans this a pretty stellar CV that few pop acts, if any, can rival. (Although the inclusion of the average 'New York City Boy' and the essentially dull 'Before' in place of sublime hits like 'Can You Forgive Her?' and 'I Don't Know What You Want....' is a mistake, basically.)

There's also a new song, 'Together', although curiously, the promo doesn't actually contain it. So I can't tell you what it sounds like. Well, I can actually, because I've heard it, but I won't. Although "brilliant synth-pop" is inevitably never going to be far from the truth.

Oh, and there's the accompanying DVD too, which is fantastic. Compiling all their 'TOTP' performances plus this year's triumphant Glastonbury set, it's a sumptuous visual treat, showing how Tennant and Lowe care just as much about great hats and coats as they do about the tunes, thus confirming the truism that pop should always be about more than music, it's about dressing up too. (Clearly a certain Stefani Germanotta has been paying attention). MS

Physical release: 1 Nov
Press contact: EMI IH

Buy from iTunes
Buy from Amazon

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Look at this, we were talking about ticket touting again yesterday for the first time in ages, and then Festival Republic goes and makes a statement about how successful its mission to remove the touts from this year's Leeds Festival was.

Good old fashioned ticket touting - with touts flogging their marked-up tickets just off site on the day of the event - has been a particular problem at the Leeds Festival in recent years. Festival Republic doesn't like the touts. Partly because the company doesn't like anyone profiting by marking up the price of their tickets and selling them on to gullible/desperate punters who missed out when tickets first went on sale. And partly because the touts get in the way of the festival organiser's carefully planned traffic flows.

The issue, of course, is that touting in itself is not illegal, so the police can't just rock up and arrest everybody. But there is a chance a tout may be violated highway or trading standards rules. To that end, Festival Republic financed a 'multi-agency tout response vehicle' with reps from various government agencies that patrolled the perimeter, questioning anyone involved in ticket touting.

It was seemingly a success. Says Festival Republic big chief man Melvin Benn: "I was keen to try and take action against touts offsite because they have disrupted our traffic plan and exploited our festival goers for years. I was delighted that agencies were able to join together in such a united and organised manner and that we could finally disrupt the touts' activities. We hope very much to repeat the response vehicle in 2011 and are very grateful to all the agencies involved for their co-operation".

Speaking for West Yorkshire Police, Inspector Marcus Griffiths added: "The close working relationship developed over a number of years with Festival Republic has allowed West Yorkshire Police and its partner agencies to put together a radical ground-breaking approach to dealing with potential criminality around the festival site. With the huge influx of traffic in the run-up to the festival, touts operating from the roadside were causing real and potential traffic hazards. I think the proof of the pudding was in the eating - the number of touts operating on the second and third days of our operation tailed off to nothing, thus keeping our roads clear of potential hazards".

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Live Nation may be struggling a little on its home turf as the American live sector slumps, but it is still a very acquisitive company. Yesterday it announced the acquisition of Ticketnet, the second largest ticket seller in France, which also operates in Belgium and Luxembourg.

Confirming the deal, Live Nation tip top man Michael Rapino told CMU: "This is a significant acquisition that will allow Live Nation to strengthen and expand its presence in a four billion euro ticketing market that has been growing 5% annually. Ticketnet will accelerate our development in the fifth largest music market in the world, and the combination of our existing concert business and Ticketnet will enable us to provide an enhanced service to the clients of both businesses".

Ticketnet MD François Thominet, who will continue to head up the company, added: "We are excited about the opportunity to see Ticketnet continue to grow in the French marketplace while taking full advantage of all the resources and experience that Live Nation has to offer. The Ticketnet team believes in the Live Nation strategy and is enthusiastic about the next phase of Ticketnet's development".

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So, no surprises here, really. A new version of LimeWire has surfaced on the internet that is independent of the Lime Group, which was ordered by a US court last month to stop distributing and supporting its infamous file-sharing client, and to screw with the settings of its existing technology so that the millions of people with LimeWire already installed on their PCs would find it less friendly to use. The court order followed successful if drawn out copyright infringement proceedings filed by the US record industry against the LimeWire makers.

The all new LimeWire, called LimeWire Pirate Edition, is being distributed by an anonymous group of developers who, according to TorrentFreak, have also tinkered with the software to make it better. A source told TorrentFreak: "On 26 Oct, the remaining LimeWire developers were forced to shut down the company's servers and modify remote settings in the file-sharing client to try to harm the Gnutella network. They were then laid off. Shortly after, a horde of piratical monkeys climbed aboard the abandoned ship, mended its sails, polished its cannons, and released it free to the community".

The source added that: "All dependencies on LimeWire LLC's servers have been removed, all remote settings have been disabled, the Ask toolbar has been unbundled, and all features of LimeWire PRO have been activated for free. LimeWire Pirate Edition should work better than the last functioning version of LimeWire (5.5.10), and it should keep working for longer. There's no adware or spyware: the piratical monkeys are doing this for the benefit of the community".

So, that's fun. I wonder if the US record industry - which seems to be preparing a multi-billion dollar damages claim that will bankrupt the Lime Group - will hold off long enough for the LimeWire owners to launch trademark infringement proceedings against the mysterious makers of the Pirate Edition.

Team Lime has already posted a cease and desist notice on its own site urging anyone distributing unofficial versions of its software to stop. Though in doing so the company does handily provide the name "LimeWire Pirate Edition" to aid the Google searches of any former LimeWire users looking for new file-sharing options.

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Childnet International, a not-for-profit organisation that aims to "help make the internet a great and safe place for children", has released a new guide for parents and teachers on online copyright.

It aims to equip said parents and teachers with the knowledge they need to work out what music, film and TV services online are legit, and the information they require to explain to those pesky file-sharing kids why copyright infringement is evil and will result in eternal damnation. Or in grass roots musicians living off dust.

The new guide, backed by record label trade bodies BPI and IFPI, is being promoted by one time Hear'sayer, current 'Cori' actress and celebrity mum Kym Marsh, who told reporters: "I find it incredibly hard to keep up with what my two teenagers are doing online, so can definitely see the value of a new guide for muddled mums like myself who are concerned about safety issues. As an actress and former musician, I'm also keen to raise greater awareness of the many sites that offer entertainment legally".

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Yahoo!'s main music man in the US, Jeff Bronikowski, is quitting and taking a senior job over at AOL Music instead. AOL has apparently been looking for a new music chief for a while. Bronikowski will move from LA to New York for his new job.

Confirming the appointment, AOL's VP of Entertainment, Kerry Trainor, said: "Jeff's vast experience working with artists and labels, his passion for music and entertainment trends and his proven ability to manage a creative team while growing an innovative business make him an excellent addition to AOL Media. He joins a talented team and I know they look forward to working with him".

Bronikowski, a former Universal Music exec, has only been with Yahoo! since February. They are yet to comment on their music man's departure, so we don't know what plans they have to replace him. Yahoo!'s music operations are bigger in the US than they are over here, though are by no means as expansive as they once were.

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Don't write off physical music products just yet, will you? Because, according to Topspin, half of the direct-to-fan online sales it facilitates for artists include some kind of physical product (eg vinyl, posters, t-shirts) bundled into the mix, and those such bundles are generating 75% of revenues.

Topspin CEO Ian Rogers revealed the stats to Digital Music News at the New Noise Santa Barbara music business conference this week. They quote him as follows: "We're beyond the one-size fits all product world - thankfully. What we see is, 50% of what we sell is digital, and 50% of it contains something physical. [But] the 50% that contains something physical is 75% of revenues, or more".

That stat isn't really a surprise, of course, given margins on physical products are always going to be higher, especially if they are limited edition. Rodgers adds: "You can definitely add a lot of money to any campaign by just adding some limited edition goods that are at a higher price point".

Of course, being able to add limited edition nonsense into the mix depends on the seller having the rights to do so (especially if its merch rather than records), which is why this trend often benefits artists direct more so than record labels.

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Music PR company CharmFactory has teamed up with Slipstream, which offers digital content management services to artists, to launch SocialCharm, a new service specialising in social media marketing and communication campaigns for music clients.

Commenting on the new initiative, CharmFactory co-founder Sarah Thompson told CMU: "A strong social media strategy is a vital component of every successful digital campaign, and Slipstream's track record is second to none. The new company will allow us to offer a complete and innovative digital service".

Slipstream owner Mark Bell added: "SocialCharm will draw on Slipstream's innovative and creative social media management and CharmFactory's expertise in digital PR and marketing to offer a winning combination to clients that will in turn create engaging campaigns for their fanbase".

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Following the rapid growth of the Heart radio brand last year, when Global Radio rebranded a stack of its local FM stations to be part of the Heart network, from next year there'll be one less Heart in operation. Orion Radio has announced it is changing the name of the Heart station it currently runs under licence from Global to GEM.

Orion acquired Nottingham-based Heart 106 last year when it bought five stations in the Midlands off Global, which had been forced to sell off some of its Midlands-based assets by competition regulators when it acquired GCap the previous year, to stop it being too dominant in that part of the country.

Initially Orion decided to keep its newly acquired Nottingham FM outpost in the Heart network, and arranged a licensing deal with Global which would allow that to happen. But eighteen months on they seem to have had a change of, erm, heart, and are opting to rebrand the station as GEM, giving them more control over the station's output.

The decision to rebrand seems to have come about quite suddenly and taken Global by surprise. The company's spokesperson told Radio Today: "We are extremely surprised at this decision today by Orion Media as the idea was mooted in the past but dismissed because of audience and revenue implications. Heart 106 East Midlands represents 34% of all national revenues for Orion, and audiences have grown by 23% in the East Midlands since the Heart license was granted to Orion. This is a very risky decision which could be extremely costly for Orion and their shareholders".

The name GEM will be familiar to people living in the East Midlands because it use to be used as a name by the golden oldies spin off of another now Global-owned local station, Trent FM. The old GEM rebranded to Gold in line with all of Global's golden oldie stations.

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TechDirt has noticed that some of the videos on Kiss's official website, which are powered by YouTube, have been disabled because of copyright claims.

Several of those claims come from a US DVD company called S'More Entertainment, which presumably own rights in some Kiss video content and which issues take-down notices against YouTube whenever its content appears on the video sharing site. Even if it's been uploaded, or at least embedded, by Live Nation's Signature Networks, the company that runs the official Kiss website, Kiss Online.

While there may well be simple misunderstandings behind all of this, given Kiss man Gene Simmon's recent comments that the US record industry should have sued every single kid who ever illegally shared music on the net, it would be amusing if Kiss's own people have been infringing copyrights in Kiss recordings on their own website.

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MC Hammer has been talking to AllHipHop.com about his previously reported one-sided beef with Jay-Z.

As previously reported, Hammer recently posted a Jay-Z dissing rap online, the video of which sees a lookalike of the Roc Nation chief being chased through some woods by the devil. Throughout Hammer seemingly addresses the hip hop mogul, threatening to "knock him out". But when the Jay-Z character actually stumbles across Hammer by a lake, he fends off Satan and then baptises his hip hop rival.

The diss seemed to have been motivated by a recent Jay-Z rap on a Kanye West track which referenced Hammer's well documented mid-90s bankruptcy. But now Hammer says that his beef really relates to Mr Z's past mocking of Christianity in his lyrics and videos. In the interview, Hammer, an ordained minister, singles out Jay-Z tracks 'On To The Next One' and 'Empire State Of Mind' as being particularly offensive to his beliefs.

Addressing Jay, Hammer told AllHipHop.com: "In the last five/six years - however many it has been - you have taken the position that my faith is a joke. That my faith is something that you can use in videos, and something that you just wanna dress the walls up with. Run a quick photo by it of Jesus with bullet holes on the side of it. So, since you are constantly bashing my faith, let's bring it on. You opened up the door by saying my name [in the Kanye West track], so let's get it all out there".

As previously reported, Jay-Z refused to be drawn into a beef with Hammer, telling BBC 1Xtra he wasn't aware the 90s rapper's financial woes were "off limits". He added that he had lots of respect for Hammer and that he says so a number of times in his upcoming new book.

But nevertheless, Hammer reckons he's won his beef. He rambles on: "I am declaring victory, because it [the diss video], showed a whole lot of people who were not aware that that [Jay's dissing of Hammer's faith] is how you are getting down. If you are a hip hop head and you are into his music, you already knew this. It's nothing to you. But there's a whole lot of people who had no idea. Since you are getting down like this and it's funny to you, let's put it on the table".

So, that's, erm, that cleared up.

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Andy Malt
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Caro Moses
Eddy Temple-Morris
Paul Vig
Club Tipper
Iain Duncan-Smith
Head Of Litter Patrol

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CMU music business expertise is also available on a consulting basis via UnLimited Consulting, click here for more information, email chris@unlimitedmedia.co.uk to discuss a project.

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