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CMU Info
Top Stories
LA Reid to depart IDJ and join X-Factor USA
VEVO UK launch "imminent"
Awards & Contests
MOBOs 2011 to take place in Glasgow
Reunions & Splits
Kerry Katona wants Atomic Kitten reunion
In The Studio
Pearl Jam to begin work on new album next month
Release News
Death Cab For Cutie announce new album
Films & Shows News
Q-Tip condemns Tribe Called Quest documentary
Books News
Beth Ditto to publish autobiography
Gigs & Tours News
Mono announce UK tour
Festival News
Festival line-up update
The Music Business
UK Music owns America - well we're doing quite well
Hargreaves shares BPI's submission
HMV preparing presentation for banks
G-Unit partners with [PIAS] for European distribution
Century Media renews EMI partnership
The Digital Business
Topspin for all
The Media Business
Daily due to arrive in UK within months
And finally...
Alex Turner eyes Bond job

Formed in 1997, LA-based quintet Yellowcard released debut album 'Midget Tossing' that same year. With founding member Ben Dobson leaving in the wake of 1999 LP 'Where We Stand' and the subsequent introduction of new guitarist Ryan Key, the band departed from more conventional hardcore to a smoother, pop-punk sound. Signing to Lobster Records for the release of third album 'One For The Kids', the group survived several further line-up changes, producing the 'Underdog' EP in 2002, which led to a deal with EMI's Capitol Records.

Breakthrough LP 'Ocean Avenue' was followed by concept album 'Lights & Sounds' in 2005, and then 'Paper Walls' in 2007. Having taken a two-year hiatus, latest album 'When You're Through Thinking, Say Yes' sees the band back on top form. The first release from an all-new line-up of original members Sean Mackin and Longineu Parsons, Ryan Key, and new additions Ryan Mendez and Sean O'Donnell, the album is scheduled to come out on 21 Mar via indie stalwart Hopeless Records.

Fresh from a series of UK live dates with fellow alt-rockers All Time Low, we asked Ryan for his post-tour responses to our Same Six Questions.

Q1 How did you start out making music?

I played a little piano as a kid. I wish now that I hadn't quit my lessons because when I look at a piano I want to be able to shred it. I think I got really into writing music after my grandmother bought me my first guitar at age thirteen. I was the perfect age for Nirvana 'Nevermind' to change my life.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?
'When You're Through Thinking, Say Yes' is inspired by the fight I still have in me. I took two years away from Yellowcard to sort of refocus my entire life. When it came time to write for the record, I was overwhelmed with the feeling of fighting to get our band back where we wanted it to be. I think there is an overall theme of moving forward and living in the present.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?
It varies from song to song. Sometimes I will write an entire song in one go, lyrics and all, and others we will write the music as a band and then work on melodies and lyrics afterwards.

Q4 Which artists influence your work?
So many. I think initially our aspiration as a band was to tour with bands like Lagwagon, No Use For a Name, and Strung Out. We loved the 90s movement of punk/pop-punk and that played a big part in shaping our sound. As we have grown there have been many other artists and bands that have inspired and influenced us. Personally my favourite artists now are Radiohead, Foo Fighters, Ryan Adams, Green Day and Band Of Horses, to name a few.

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
I think it is important for people to try and hear everything that is happening in our music. If the heavy guitars and faster pace isn't your thing, still give us a chance. There is a lot of depth to our band and our ability as songwriters. You just have to get into the records.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
When our band blew up six years ago, we started to only think about the future. Or at least I did. Asking how much bigger it could get, making grand plans for things that I saw us doing down the road. Unfortunately, I think I missed a lot of the best parts of that ride due to that mind set. So with 'When You're Through Thinking, Say Yes', I really want to take it one day, one show, one song at a time. It is important for me to not take anything for granted this time around. It isn't often in this line of work that second chances like this are handed out. I don't want to miss a moment of it.

MORE>> www.yellowcardrock.com
There are two versions of Joana Glaza's story. The first is that she went into a forest one night and asked a wolf to teach her to sing. The wolf obliged by jumping into her mouth and burrowing down inside her, where it remains to this day. I think that one's possibly made up. The second version is that she moved to London from her native Lithuania, discovered a world of Western music that was less available in her home country, and fell in love.

Later she formed Joana And The Wolf and began gigging around London, bringing her to the attention of Kasabian, who invited her to provide guest vocals on their 2006 single, 'Empire'. Since then, Joana's band have released a number of well-received singles themselves. Their latest, 'Hide Me', is due for release on 3 May, and follows a string of increasingly high profile gigs, including a headline set at Club NME in London's Koko. 'Hide Me' is a hint at what you might find at one of those shows, an anthemic rock song with a circular guitar riff and driving drums that build underneath Joana's arresting voice over three and a half minutes.


"The best music business training event I have attended; relevant and up to date, your knowledge of and enthusiasm for the industry is simply exceptional" from delegate feedback

We are currently taking bookings for the following CMU TRAINING courses:


How to make money out of music - both now and in the future, with a look at alternative investment and revenue streams, and a new approach to monetising artists and their music. Wed 23 Mar 2011

A beginner's guide to music copyright - everything you need to know about copyright law, licensing, monetising copyright, the fight against piracy and the future of the music rights industry. Wed 6 Apr 2011

For more information or to book visit www.theCMUwebsite.com/training

Veteran American record label chief Antonio 'LA' Reid is set to leave his job overseeing Universal Music's Island Def Jam division in order to become a judge on the all new US version of 'X-Factor'. According to Billboard, although no official announcement has been made, sources have confirmed to them that Reid accepted an invite to appear on the new talent show earlier this week, and he intends to leave his IDJ job to do so.

This, of course, has led to speculation that Reid will subsequently join Sony Music, the major which owns half of the 'X-Factor' franchise through its business partnership with Simon Cowell. If he did so, he'd be part of an expected exchange of executives between the two major record companies.

Reid would join his former boss Doug Morris at Sony, and possibly fill the gap left by Barry Weiss, who recently made the opposite move, from Sony to Universal. It's thought that after Reid's departure, executive responsibility for IDJ will be included in Weiss's new remit at Universal, although the division's President Steve Bartels will continue to run it on a day to day basis.

Cowell himself wouldn't reveal anything about the 'X-USA' judging panel when asked about it earlier this week, though he did tell MTV: "It's gonna be a balance between guys and girls, and it should be a balance between people who have been singers and also, like me, have worked behind the scenes and know what they're talking about. It will be the best judging panel so far. I promise you: If I get the people I want, I'm really happy".

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VEVO could be live in the UK in the next few weeks, which is exciting, no? As much previously reported, VEVO is the YouTube-powered music video service owned by Universal and Sony Music, among others. Live in the US since 2009, users can access some 30,000 music videos and other bespoke content, either directly via VEVO, or through VEVO pages on the YouTube website.

We've known a UK launch is in the offing since January when Media Week reported that the video service's ad sales people were out there in ad sales land promoting the advertising opportunities on the video site. Now the digital venture's CEO, Rio Caraeff, has confirmed to the Abu Dhabi Media Summit that VEVO is "planning to launch in the UK imminently". Sources have told The Guardian that could mean within weeks.

Caraeff added that a launch in the Middle East and North Africa was also upcoming - the Abu Dhabi Media Company is a shareholder in VEVO - with Brazil, Australia and other European countries on the timetable for the second half of this year.

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Organisers of the MOBO Awards have announced that their big event will take place in Glasgow in 2011, 2013 and 2015. The MOBOs, of course, moved out of London in 2009, taking place that year in the Scottish city, and then last year in Liverpool. Presumably other regional cities will be picked for 2012 and 2014. This year's event will take place at Glasgow's SECC on 5 Oct.

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Remember when Atomic Kitten were still together and making music? That was good, wasn't it? No, no it wasn't. So, we were quite pleased when a previously rumoured reunion of the band, featuring four of the five members who had at various times made up the former trio, never came to anything. But now Kerry Katona is dredging that whole thing up again. Well, possibly.

Put together by OMD's Andy McCluskey in 1997, the original line-up featured Katona, Heidi Range and Liz McClarnon. Range left in 1999 (later reappearing as a Sugababe, of course) and was replaced by Natasha Hamilton. Katona then departed in 2001 when she became pregnant by then Westlife member Brian McFadden and was replaced by Jenny Frost.

Though she has subsequently made a career for herself by being unstable on television, Katona has variously said that she would like to return to music, and recently told Heat that she has been in touch with both McClarnon and Hamilton, the latter of whom is currently appearing in 'Blood Brothers' in the West End (not both, as Katona seems to think). Of course that incarnation of the line-up really came before the group had any major success.

Katona said: "I'd love to sing and perform again. I miss it. I texted Tash and Liz the other day and they invited me to see them in 'Blood Brothers', so yes, we're in touch".

McLarnon added: "I don't doubt that she misses performing. It is addictive, and she's good on stage. It's a shame she's out now, as she seemed to really enjoy it. I'm sure we'll cross paths again".

Does that means McLarnon wants to do it or doesn't it? This is no time for being vague.

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You might think Pearl Jam have recorded enough albums by now. Not so, says bassist Jeff Ament. In fact, he's told Billboard that the band have already written 25 songs for their next one and will begin work on shaping them into an album next month.

Of work on the follow-up to 2009's 'Backspacer', Ament said: "We did a whole bunch of demos and everybody's got a disc of 25 [songs] right now. April will be the time where we get together and learn to play all these demos and figure out which twelve to fifteen of them float to the top. Hopefully we can get something done this year".

The band also have a documentary and book in the works, both due out later this year, to commemorate the 20th anniversary of their debut album 'Ten'. Not only that, they're planning to launch their own festival, which may or may not take place in September, though this, the location and the line-up are yet to be finalised.

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Death Cab For Cutie are back. It's been a while. The follow-up to 2008's 'Narrow Stairs', entitled 'Codes And Keys', will be released on 30 May via Warner/Atlantic.

The first single, 'You Are A Tourist', is due out on 16 May, and a UK tour - following an appearance at the Hop Farm festival and supporting Foo Fighters at Milton Keynes Bowl - is also scheduled for July.

Those dates are:

1 Jul: Hop Farm Festival
2 Jul: Milton Keynes Bowl (supporting Foo Fighters)
4 Jul: Manchester, Academy
5 Jul: Nottingham, Rock City
7 Jul: London, Brixton Academy

And here's the album's tracklist:

Home Is A Fire
Codes And Keys
Some Boys
Doors Unlocked And Open
You Are A Tourist
Unobstructed Views
Monday Morning
Portable Television
Underneath The Sycamore
St. Peter's Cathedral
Stay Young, Go Dancing

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Rapper Q-Tip has spoken out against an upcoming documentary about his hip hop troupe, A Tribe Called Quest, who reformed in 2006.

He claims that director Michael Rapaport and his team are attempting to block the group out of creative decisions on the film, entitled 'Beats, Rhymes & Life', and to remove their collective co-producer credit. And he's now backing these claims up with an email he was accidentally sent by another of the film's producers.

The first sign of unrest on this project came in December, when Q-Tip tweeted that he no longer supported the project and said that Rapaport should "respect the band enough to honour our request regarding the film".

Calling the mis-sent email a "godsend" in that it confirms previous suspicions, he told MTV News that it said: "First off, let's close the billing block [the credits on published materials] and put it on the poster so they can't get on that. Then we'll fuck them on everything else".

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Beth Ditto has revealed that she is to publish an autobiography, co-written with American author Michelle Tea, entitled 'Coal To Diamonds'.

The Gossip frontwoman told the NME that she hasn't held back in revealing her private life in the book, saying: "The only stuff I'm embarrassed talking about in it is the first Gossip album ['That's Not What I Heard']. That was kind of embarrassing, but people already know about that. In that first album there was stuff about going down on girls, which was pretty cringeworthy. But for the most part I just take it all in my stride, it's fine. I don't get embarrassed easily. I don't. I could show you my butt cheeks now and I'd be fine about it".

She added: "There's some shit in there that is going to seriously shock the crap out of everyone. Things that are going to make people forget about me eating squirrels. Totally eclipse it".

She means the book, not her butt cheeks there, by the way.

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Japanese post-rockers Mono have announced that they will tour the UK in June, including a special performance with the 24-piece Holy Ground Orchestra at London's Koko.

Explaining what fans can expect at the Koko show, the band say: "We have been playing music together as a band for over twelve years now and we feel we have come so far in that time, as musicians and as people. We want to push the boundaries of what is expected of rock musicians and draw upon those influences that heavily inspire us, namely Beethoven and other classical composers, and perform something very unique".

They continued: "We really embrace the opportunity to perform this extremely special concert where we expand our sound with a 24-piece orchestra, for the first time ever in Europe. We are so happy to be able to finally share this highly emotional performance with our loyal fanbase in London and Europe as a whole, who have always been so good to us and we hope that it will be as spiritual and meaningful for them, as it is for us".

Tour dates:

6 Jun: Brighton, Concorde 2
7 Jun: London, Koko
8 Jun: Bristol, The Fleece
9 Jun: Manchester, Sound Control
10 Jun: Glasgow, The Arches

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CAMBRIDGE FOLK FESTIVAL, Cherry Hinton Hall Grounds, Cambridge, 28-31 Jul: Bucking the current Mumford-led folk trend, the annual Cambridge knees-up is set to play host to Bellowhead, Laura Marling, Newton Faulkner and Kate Rusby. Festival-opener Chris Wood will be joined by likes of The Secret Sisters, Richard Thompson, Mary Chapin Carpenter and one-time Mavericks frontman Raul Malo. www.cambridgefolkfestival.co.uk

GUILFEST, Stoke Park, Guilford, 15-17 July: The strange pairing of John Lydon's Public Image Limited and Peter Andre's... er, Peter Andre have been newly revealed as headliners of the Good Time Guide Stage at this year's homespun hooplah. 80s electro-popsters Erasure round off the trio of recent announcements, with performances from family-friendly favourites James Blunt and Razorlight also set to delight adults and children alike. www.guilfest.co.uk

HARVEST AT JIMMY'S, Jimmy's Farm Ipswich, Suffolk, 9-12 Sept: Run by affable Jamie Oliver-alike Jimmy Doherty on his working farm, this year's event will welcome Eliza Doolittle and Benjamin Francis Leftwich, with DJ sets from Giles Peterson and Huw Stephens also on the billing. www.harvestatjimmys.com

POHODA, Airport Trencin, Slovakia, 7-9 Jul: The ever controversial MIA makes a less controversial addition to this year's Pohoda, with Lamb and Magnetic Man also set to play alongside such already-announced acts as Moby and Portishead. www.pohodafestival.sk

ROCK WERCHTER, Rotselaar, Belgium, 30 Jun - 3 Jul: With a line-up already so packed full of rock talent it's liable to explode, Werchter organisers have squeezed in one further big name in the form of Queens Of The Stone Age, who will perform on the festival's opening day. The National, Coldplay, Kings of Leon, Arctic Monkeys and Iron Maiden are amongst those already confirmed to appear. www.rockwerchter.be/en

WE THE PEOPLE, Bristol Harbour, Bristol, 4-5 Jun: Example, YasmIn, Roots Manuva, Annie Mac and Beardyman are all heading in a southwesterly direction for the first incarnation of the Bristolian bash. Doom and local hero Redlight are also booked to perform, alongside The Streets and Chase & Status, who were announced yonks (about two weeks) ago. www.wethepeoplefestival.co.uk

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Someone who can count all the way to 140, but seemingly no further, has worked out that "more than 140" UK acts will perform during this week's South By Southwest over there in Austin, Texas. Coincidentally, this week the top three positions in the US Album Chart are all occupied by Brits - Adele, former Floetry singer Marsha Ambrosius and Mumford & Sons - the first time this has happened for 25 years.

Which sounds like as good a reason as any for some serious bragging. And who better to do that than UK Music chief Feargal Sharkey? Well, probably Billy "Bragg", but Feargal has more experience when it comes to this kind of thing. So here he is: "It is 25 years since UK artists stood at 1-2-3 in the US album charts. This substantial achievement is testament to their creative talent and those behind the scenes who support and invest in their careers".

He continued: "It also perfectly illustrates the diversity of world-class talent that this country nurtures, across all genres, and which is reflected in the numbers travelling to South By Southwest. The UK sends more artists and delegates to Austin than any other country outside of the US. And while the investment involved in breaking an act internationally remains considerable, I'm convinced that with increased strategic support across music and creative content industries there's no limit to the growth we could achieve".

Sniffing a rare good news story, that Ed Vaizey fella - the government's "oooh, aren't the creative industries fun" man - also insisted on joining in with the bragging.

He told everyone: "It is great to see British artists topping the US charts. The success of these artists coupled with the number of British performers at SxSW demonstrates the health and vibrancy of the UK music industry. Our creative industries are essential to the success of the UK and we need to create the right conditions for this sector to grow. That is why we set up the Digital & Creative Industries Growth Review, which will identify how we can support growth".

I do love a good Growth Review, can't wait to read it.

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Talking of government helping the creative industries, or not, Prof Ian Hargreaves, the man spearheading David Cameron's Google Review of copyright law, is in the process of publishing most of the submissions made to him as part of his investigation. I'm assuming he's made sure he has a license to do so.

The latest submission to be made public is that by UK record label trade body the BPI, who start off their 123 page essay on copyright law in classic form by disagreeing with the question. Or, rather, by questioning one of the key assertions proposed by Hargreaves at the start of this review process, the idea that UK copyright law needs a much more wide-ranging fair use (or 'fair dealing' to use the English law term) provision for digital services to prosper.

It's known this is an area where Google - whose lobbying seemingly instigated this review in the first place - wants significant reform, and its positioning at the heart of Hargreaves' original review outline has bothered music industry types, some of whom see this whole investigation as being anti-copyright-owners.

At the start of its submission, the BPI confirms its intent to "respectfully challenge" this premise, going on to say the UK digital music market is prospering just fine under the current system, that fighting piracy should be priority number one, and that ramped up fair use provisions would "reduce business certainty and increase the costs to business of litigation".

The BPI's submission goes on to make eight recommendations. You can read it, and all the other submissions so far made public, at the URL below. Just so you don't get confused, don't forget that in this wacky modern age, BPI stands for, erm, 'British Recorded Music Industry".


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HMV bosses are busy preparing a presentation for their bankers which is due to be presented next week, according to City AM. The presentation will presumably set out the short term future for the retail and entertainment group, and will encourage money lenders to relax the rules associated with the firm's current debts.

HMV, of course, is set to next month fail a key covenant of its £240 million bank loan facility, which we now know is that annual gross earnings must exceed the retailer's rent bill. As previously reported, the music firm has been consulting both KPMG and Deloitte, as well as meeting with its money-lenders, in a bid to renegotiate those loan terms.

HMV has, of course, being pursuing a diversification strategy in recent years, extending the comapny's interests in digital, live and artist management. Although it's a sensible strategy given the state of entertainment retail, the firm's flagging high street business continues to cause problems, which is particularly problematic when combined with the debts created by the diversification strategy.

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50 Cent's record label G-Unit has entered into a deal with [PIAS] which will now handle the European distribution for the hip hop venture. Fiddy's label used to be part of Universal's Interscope family, but the rapper disaffiliated with the major last year, entering into a distribution partnership for North America with EMI.

Nikki Martin, a VP of the label, said in a statement: "Last year we took the decision to restructure the label and begin to carve out its own world-wide distribution, marketing and promotions strategy. After signing with EMI for North America, we looked at who could help develop the brand in other key territories and we decided to partner with [PIAS] who shared our vision and passion for the music".

It's also been reported that G-Unit will set up a UK base headed up by DJ Dan Greenpeace. I don't know if that's true, but it would be great if it was.

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Elsewhere in distribution deals, metal label Century Media earlier this week announced it had renewed its global distribution partnership with EMI Label Services and its Caroline Distribution division in the US.

Says Don Robertson, President of Century Media: "Century Media has had an outstanding relationship with EMI and Caroline over the past decade and we are very happy to have renewed our partnership. We look forward to an even brighter future with them and growing our respective companies together during these new and exciting times".

Says Mike Harris, Exec Vice President and General Manager of EMI Global Label Services: "I think the strongest validation we could have of the offering that EMI Label Services provides to the creative community is the fact that our partners consistently renew their relationships with us. We're particularly thrilled that one of our longest standing partners in Century Media has yet again extended their agreement with EMI, and we are thrilled to continue to have the opportunity to be able to work with them and their enviable roster of metal bands".

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Topspin is opening up its platform to all labels and artists, top man Ian Rogers confirmed at South By Southwest yesterday.

Previously the digital firm's direct-to-fan technology was only available to a network of label and distribution partners. Now anyone will be able to make use of the Topspin platform for as little as ten dollars a month, plus transaction fees.

As expected, this puts Topspin more directly into competition with other direct-to-fan tool providers like Bandcamp, ReverbNation and Music Glue, though it will still be a little more expensive than its rivals.

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Rupert Murdoch's iPad newspaper the Daily will launch over here "within months" according to News Corp digital man Jon Miller, who was speaking at the Abu Dhabi Media Summit this week.

Miller said News Corp was waiting for Apple's controversial app subscription system to go live in Europe before launching the Daily over here.

As previously reported, Murdoch and his News Corp pals hope that punters who won't pay to access news websites might be persuaded to pay to subscribe to a multi-media iPad-based news magazine.

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Arctic Monkey Alex Turner has said he'd fancy writing a James Bond theme, if the opportunity arose.

Speaking to BBC 6music about his soundtrack for new Richard Ayoade-directed film, 'Submarine', Turner said: "I don't think of this as a soundtrack. I just wrote a few tunes and they happened to fit. I don't think I'd be very good at doing the soundtrack for 'Transformers' or anything like that".

However, asked if he'd do a Bond theme: "I'd love to do a tune for Bond. Definitely".

Of course, his Last Of The Shadow Puppets project with Miles Kane would lend itself to Bond. However, his 'Submarine' EP was described by one member of the CMU team as "a bit wet" yesterday, which is less what they'd be looking for, I think.

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