CMU Daily - on the inside 18 Nov 2002
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
• Napster goes to CD burning company,
• MTV boss slates manufactured pop,
• Another So Solid Crew member in trouble with the law,
• David told to lose white guitarist,
• Fake Williams tracks online,
• Shares go up for radio groups after Clear Channel interest,
• Popstar girls - release dates set


What was Eminem the first rapper to do in the UK when he released 'Stan'?
Answer tomorrow


Christina Aguilera may have taken the number one spot with her new single 'Dirty', but mention must go to Nelly and Kelly who went back up to number two this week - something rare for singles these days, a long shelf life! Welcome arrivals in the singles chart this week included the Sugarbabes (assuming you buy into the credible girl band thing) with 'Stronger' at 7, Coldplay with 'The Scientist' at 10, Shy FX and T Power at 19 and the excellent Tenacious D in at 34.

Albums wise no surprise that the Westlife best of stormed in at number one, pushing fellow boy band and last week's chart toppers Blue into the number 2 spot. Elton's best of went straight in at three, while Craig David's second album release went straight in at 4.

Three new entries of note: Sophie Ellis Bexter straight in at 19 with 'Read My Lips', Missy Elliot in at 23 with 'Under Construction' and Pearl Jam in at 34 with 'Riot Act'

This weekend marked the 50th anniversary of the singles chart, of course, and Radio 1 celebrated by letting Robbie perform four tracks live and by getting rid of Mark Goodier, off to present the chart show on Classic FM. The station is yet to announce who will front its new look chart show - temporary presenters will fill in in the meantime.


Word is the Napster name and URL will be acquired by Nasdaq listed Roxio, a company who CD-burning software. They are expected to pay in the region of $5.3m (£3.6m) in cash and shares for the defunct music swapping company in a deal which will get them Napster's assets and intellectual property rights but let them avoid their financial liabilities.

Roxio's chief executive, Chris Gorog, told the BBC that buying Napster would, "enhance our offerings to consumers". Though he wouldn't comment on exactly how he intended to make use of the Napster name.

If the sale goes through it will be an end of an era in music downloading - though the battle against the unofficial file exchange sites very much continues.


Now the boss of MTV Europe - Brent Hansen - has spoken out against manufactured pop saying the public "will get sick of identikit bands" and that the industry needed to take a longer-term view on the development of artists. "The difficulty is when you start to get very cynical about putting together paint-by-number identikit bands," he told reporters. "You then tend to devalue the face of performing arts. The proliferation of them will, I think, turn the public against that style of band for a little while."

He also reckons record labels need to learn that if they want artists with long term or international value then quick-win teen bands aren't effective. "We would encourage people to take a longer-term view on the development of artists. That is the only way you are going to create the next wave of superstars who will give you a sense of solidarity behind your label."

Hansen joins pop stars Kylie and Robbie Williams in slating the reality TV model of finding and promoting new bands.


So Solid Crew's executive producer Jason Joab Phillips was refused bail by Judge Nicholas Evans yesterday over firearms charges. He was arrested by police on Thursday night on suspicion of possessing a firearm. The charges were not put to him in court and no plea was entered. Phillips will now appear for a bail hearing at Southwark Crown Court in the next forty eight hours.


Craig David has been told by industry insiders in the US that he should ditch his white guitar player Fraser T Smith if he wants to appeal to black music fans. David, one of the few British artists to have real success in the US in recent years, is out in America promoting his new album 'Slicker Than The Average'. Word is black executives at radio networks David has played since his arrival there have told him that he would sell more records if he played with an all-black band.

David, who is adamant close friend Smith will stay in his band, told BBC Radio Five Live he found it "disappointing that there was still this slight sense of racism going on over there".

Commenting on the story Toussaint Davy of hip-hop magazine Touch told the BBC David's reaction was admirable, but he may lose fans. "Any artist that goes over to the States trying to push black music is going to face a struggle if they're not black. It's hard to know how it's going to affect him. His first album did go platinum over there. But his marketing people are telling him things, and he would be stupid not to listen to them. Everyone has to compromise. Look at what's happened to Robbie Williams. He's making anodyne ballads so Americans will take notice of him."

Girl group Eternal faced similar criticism from US radio stations in the early nineties for the presence of white member Louise Nerding. So much so that when Louise quit the band there were rumours (denied by management) that such racist criticism has been taken on board.


Fake copies of tracks from Robbie Williams' new album Escapology, out today, have surfaced on the internet sparking suggestions that they have been placed online by EMI to sabotage attempts to download the music for free. The tracks, which have appeared on sites like Morpheus and Kazaa, appear to be normal until they are played, some play for 30 seconds then fade out, others are silent.. Some allege that record labels are planting decoy tracks to make navigating the libraries of illegal MP3s tedious, hoping to push music fans to official download sites where you might have to pay a small fee but the files you download are more reliable.


Shares in major radio groups Capital Radio and GWR rose this morning after reports that US radio giant Clear Channel is considering an acquisition spree in the UK market when new legislation allowing foreign ownership of British radio stations gets passed by government. "Clearly we want scale and there is no point buying just one business," Roger Parry, the chief executive of Clear Channel International told the Sunday Telegraph yesterday. "You have to have a coherent strategy to allow you to consolidate the industry. Any buyer considering a UK play had to include Capital high on their list of potential candidates. It is the largest and the most visible." His comments boosted Capital's share price, while GWR, probably the next priority in takeover stakes, also saw its share value go up.

Parry confirmed no take over attempts would begin until new legislation was in place, and he promised no takeovers would be hostile.


Popstars judge Louis Walsh has said the Popstars girls' first single, a double A-side, will be released on December 16. It will feature a cover of East 17's Stay Another Day coupled with a brand new track called Sounds Of The Underground. He's hoping for a Christmas number one.


Answer to Friday's pop quiz:
How many countries did U2 top the album charts in after the 2000 release of 'All That You Can't Leave Behind'?


There's a slightly reduced service on the CMU Daily this week while we go through the processes of relaunching the CMU OnLine website - which goes live next Monday. Normal service will return next week.

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