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INFORMATION
Jobs
CMU Info
TODAY'S NEWS
Top Stories
RAVAS calls for decisive action on mail-order VAT dodge
BMG now bidding for the whole of Warner
In The Pop Courts
Supreme court refuses to hear Universal's FBT appeal
High Court to consider DEA judicial review this week
In The Pop Hospital
Wyclef Jean only "grazed" by bullet
Artist Deals
BMG Chrysalis signs Carly Simon in North America
In The Studio
Jessie J working on new songs
Release News
Eddie Vedder announces ukulele album
Autokratz announce new album
Gigs & Tours News
Foo Fighters to tour garages
Björk announces Manchester residency
Hidden Cameras, Woodpigeon for Canada Day show
Festival News
Festival line-up update
Reviews
Live review: Surfer Blood at The Scala in London on 9 Mar
The Digital Business
Is Apple music locker launch imminent? Probably not
The Media Business
Commercial radio chief says: "Let us run BBC local radio"
Konnie Huq quits Xtra Factor
And finally...
Mel B pregnant
Duran Duran: Working with Timbaland was a fucking nightmare


 
TUESDAY 22ND MARCH
HER NAME IS CALLA
Yorkshire quintet Her Name Is Calla began releasing material in 2004, putting out several singles and demos which culminated in six-track EP 'The Heritage' in 2008. Having already garnered a reputation for sprawling, improvisational live sets, they earned further plaudits with the EP's brave and unabashed approach to post-rock reinvention.

 
Emerging last year on German label Denovali Records, debut album 'The Quiet Lamb' is a dark and difficult affair, combining rich, orchestral interludes and delicate, folksy arrangements with haunting spells dominated by lead singer Tom Morris' melancholic lead vocal.

As they prepare to embark on a European tour, which kicks off at the Left Bank in Leeds on 27 Mar, violinist Sophie sheds some light on the album's creative process with her responses to our Same Six Questions.

Q1 How did you start out making music?

I think we all started quite young - I learnt classical violin, and played in orchestra throughout school and university; Tom had the keys to his school's music room, and locked himself in to compose all night. As a band, Tom and Mike met first, and the group expanded as they met various people - Adam and myself joined a few years ago, and brought the sound from quite sparse to rather orchestral and epic.

Q2 What inspired your latest album?

A lot of it came from a very personal place. Tom wrote most of the songs after a breakdown, but you can also hear the painful and difficult experiences that we each went through during those years. But that's also why we're very proud of the 'The Quiet Lamb': there is some darker material on there, but as a whole, it's about us all coming together and working with each other on every track. We spent a lot of time talking and creating music, which is the nicer side of the past few years together.

Q3 What process do you go through in creating a track?

On 'The Quiet Lamb', most of the songs started as quite a skeletal acoustic and vocal take by Tom. Then we might meet up and play through the track as a group, or as was often the case, record our parts separately in our own rooms. Since we all live in different parts of the country, we relied heavily on Dropbox, a program that allows you to drop files into a shared folder. So, for example, I might get one mix of the song with drums, bass and guitar on, and record my violin parts. Then I would upload my violin parts to the band, and it would get mixed in. Every day, we could hear a new version, or talk about our parts - whether that melody was a good idea, would those vocals work there, etc...

Q4 Which artists influence your work?

We don't have any direct influences, or try to make songs sound like a particular artist. We also have pretty different tastes to each other! Some artists we like right now are Rebekka Karijord, John Grant, Volcano, Ennio Morricone, Tchaikovsky, Cat Power, Kate Bush, Shearwater, worriedaboutsatan, The Decemberists, Mew...

Q5 What would you say to someone experiencing your music for the first time?
We always intended 'The Quiet Lamb' to be an album that you experience as a whole. Turn down the lights, perhaps have a nice drink by your side, close all social networking programs... There are arcs and themes in the music that are hard to realise in little chunks. For someone listening to perhaps just one track, like 'Pour More Oil', I think the same idea applies. Our music isn't meant to be background music, and I'd hope it would never feel as such.

Q6 What are your ambitions for your latest album, and for the future?
We would like to continue to perform 'The Quiet Lamb' to new audiences, and to have more people discover the songs that shaped such a huge part of our lives. But we are always trying to challenge ourselves, and have already recorded some new (quite different!) songs for a new seven-inch single, due out around April.

MORE>> www.hernameiscalla.com
 
STRANGERS
Electronic duo Strangers have kept a low profile since forming last year. OK, that might not seem like such a difficult task. However, since they have begun nudging tracks out to various journalists and bloggers, interest has been picking up fast, thanks to the immediacy and addictiveness of their dark pop sound and a familiarity with the makings of a great chorus.

 
A popular choice in the CMU office for the last six weeks or so, they quietly released their debut EP, 'EP1', this week via iTunes, and are now hard at work on their debut album with producer Glen Nicholls (aka Future Funk Squad). You catch the video for the EP's lead track, 'In Chaos', on their website, after which you can click through to their SoundCloud profile, where you'll find the EP streaming in full.

www.strangersofficial.com


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

MUSIC RIGHTS - INSIDE & OUT
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

PROMOTING MUSIC - MEDIA, SOCIAL MEDIA AND MORE

How to build a profile for your artists - the state of the music media, traditional and new publicity techniques, social media and the future of music PR. Wed 20 Apr 2011

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





RAVAS CALLS FOR DECISIVE ACTION ON MAIL-ORDER VAT DODGE
Retailers Against VAT Avoidance Schemes, a recently formed pressure group that brings together those who oppose the much previously reported Channel Islands VAT dodge, have called on the government to "take genuine action rather than tokenistic half-measures" ahead of today's Budget speech by the weird boy Osborne.

As previously reported, when Tory Lord Ralph Lucas recently raised the VAT dodge issue in parliament a ministerial spokesman for the Treasury, James Sassoon, promised a statement would be made on it in today's Budget. Campaigners hope that this might finally bring an end to the situation whereby mail-order websites based on the Channel Islands selling products for under £18 can do so without paying VAT, giving them an automatic 20% advantage over mainland based retailers.

As also previously reported, this loophole exists because of the Channel Islands' slightly unusual status, inside the European customs zone but not part of the European Union. All the big music sellers utilise the loophole, including Tesco, Asda, Sainsburys, Play.com, Amazon and HMV. But the option is not open to smaller retailers who can't afford an offshore base, which, campaigners argue, has led to numerous independent music stores, who might otherwise have been able to respond to the new threat of the internet by entering the mail-order domain themselves, going out of business.

Past promises by both the British and Channel Island governments to tackle this VAT dodge, which also costs the treasury millions a year in unpaid taxes, have never come to much, even though, campaigners say, the UK is obliged under European tax law to ensure the existence of European tax relief measures such as the Channel Islands VAT dodge do not distort the market.

Speaking ahead of today's Budget, RAVAS spokesman Richard Allen told CMU: "We have seen before what happens when the authorities act simply in order to be seen to be doing something. In 2007, the Jersey government, at the request of [UK tax officials], introduced a license scheme, supposedly in order to restrict the trade. But it had no effect on the volume of goods being sold and all it did was concentrate the trade in the hands of those who could get licenses. Now, 96% of CDs bought online in the UK come from the Channel Islands. The license scheme did nothing".

Allen adds that the government should also look carefully at any firms which claim moves to close the VAT loophole should not affect them because they are "genuine Channel Islands companies", rather than UK businesses basing themselves there simply to gain the VAT loophole advantage.

Allen adds: "Offshore consultants advertise their services openly. They can set you up with a Jersey company that has nominee local directors. People close to this whole scam have told us how these nominee directors get told to say they are attending board meetings when they are actually playing golf. The whole management is in the UK and the only reason this 'genuine Jersey company' is set up in the first place is to avoid VAT".

Allen adds that many of these "genuine Channel Islands companies" also have UK bases where any product not eligible for the VAT relief (ie those that cost more than £18) are mailed out because, of course, when there is no tax advantage it doesn't make sense logistically to be shipping goods to British customers from off-shore facilities.

In a statement RAVAS concluded: "We will not be satisfied until HM Treasury takes definitive action and introduces a measure to prevent [VAT relief] being used by any company, in any way, to gain a distortive price advantage over VAT-paying competitors in the UK".

It remains to be seen what Georgie actually says this afternoon.

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BMG NOW BIDDING FOR THE WHOLE OF WARNER
BMG is back in the bidding for the Warner Music Group and this time is going for the whole company, US media reports claimed last night.

BMG is one of over ten parties who recently put in bids to buy some or all of the Warner music company. It is believed the company originally bid only for Warner's publishing division Warner Chappell, and that Warner's current owners said the offer price was too low but that they would accept a new bid. And, according to CNBC, that new bid sees KKR-backed BMG bid for the whole of Warner, including its record labels.

BMG, of course, is officially a music rights business interested in the exploitation of any music copyrights, whether they be in sound recordings (ie the rights traditionally owned by record companies) or songs (ie the rights traditionally owned by music publishers).

That said, the majority of BMG's acquisitions to date have focused on the music publishing sector, though their top man, Hartwig Masuch, did tell Music Week last year he was more interested in EMI's record labels than its publishing catalogues.

All that said, the consensus is that if BMG did secure the whole of Warner Music it'd look to offload most of the record labels, most likely to either Sony or Universal. So much so there have been rumours of BMG, Sony and Universal making a joint bid for Warner, though those rumours don't seem to have much substance.

A bid to buy Warner Music outright with the intent of breaking it up might not be attractive to current Warner CEO and notable shareholder Edgar Bronfman Jr, who is believed to prefer the option of selling Warner/Chappell to help fund an acquisition of the EMI record labels, which are also up for sale. Therefore he seems unlikely to support the BMG bid, unless, perhaps, there was some kind of influential role on offer for him at the increasingly acquisitive music rights company.

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SUPREME COURT REFUSES TO HEAR UNIVERSAL'S FBT APPEAL
The US Supreme Court has declined to hear an appeal by the Universal Music Group in relation to that previously reported lawsuit pursued by early Eminem collaborators FBT Productions.

As previously reported, FBT Productions worked on the early Eminem recordings, and has a stake in the copyrights in those tracks, getting royalties via Slim Shady's label, the Universal-owned Interscope. The company's contract with the major, as is often the case, pays out a bigger share of royalties on licensing deals as opposed to record sales.

FBT argues that Universal's relationship with services like iTunes should be considered a licensing deal, whereas labels always treat a la carte download stores as if they were record shops, and therefore any download revenue as record sales money rather that licensing income. That means, of course, that the labels pay the smaller royalty share to artists (and in this case producers), while FBT argue they are due the bigger cut on download money.

They weren't the first artists with pre-internet record company contracts to make this argument, but whereas most other similar claims failed in court, with this case FBT won, the US Ninth Circuit Court ruling in their favour last year and then refusing to hear the case for a second time.

Which is why Universal took the case to the Supreme Court, but it has now refused to hear the appeal as it currently stands. Legal experts say that Universal could have one last go, by presenting an appeal case on different grounds, though the major is running out of options.

Of course, this case potentially has bigger implications than Universal just having to pay bigger royalties to FBT - if royalties from iTunes et al are to be treated as licensing income rather than record sales then many artists on pre-internet contracts may be due a bigger pay out from their labels. Though, we should note, Universal legal types continue to insist that this case relates to the specific wording of the FBT contract and that any ruling against the label does not set a precedent that might apply in other cases. Which may well be the case. Though they would say that, wouldn't they?

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HIGH COURT TO CONSIDER DEA JUDICIAL REVIEW THIS WEEK
BT and TalkTalk's application for a judicial review of the copyright section of the Digital Economy Act will be assessed in more detail by the High Court this week.

The High Court agreed last November to consider the internet service providers' gripes with the way the copyright bit of the DEA was constructed and rushed through parliament, and will this week give those gripes more consideration before deciding whether to proceed to a full judicial review. If they do, it could take a full year for the courts to rule, further postponing the launch of the three-strikes-style anti-piracy system the DEA put in place.

As previously reported, BT and TalkTalk claim the anti-file-sharing measures in the DEA infringe the "basic rights and freedoms" of net users, and that the proposals did not get sufficient scrutiny when the Labour government rushed them through parliament to ensure they were passed before last year's General Election. If the courts agreed, they could force ministers to rethink the DEA's copyright provisions and take them back to parliament for another vote.

Even if the legal action is ultimately unsuccessful, if the full review goes ahead those who support the three-strikes-style system will be disappointed by the inevitable delay, given some hoped initial letters would already be going out to suspected file-sharers by now, whereas it increasingly looks likely that won't happen before spring 2012 at the earliest.

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WYCLEF JEAN ONLY "GRAZED" BY BULLET
Wyclef Jean has commented on the "superficial injuries" he suffered this weekend after a bullet "grazed" his hand on Saturday night.

As previously reported, the former Fugee was injured in a shooting incident in his home country of Haiti the night before the presidential elections he had originally hoped to stand in. The injury was not significant and Jean left hospital the next day. His fellow Fugee tweeted yesterday: "Everyone can relax Wyclef is fine... They can't stop us not one bullet or a machine gun!"

Meanwhile, police in Haiti have denied Jean was shot at all, with one police chief telling Reuters he had been told by doctors that the singer had cut his hand on some glass.

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BMG CHRYSALIS SIGNS CARLY SIMON IN NORTH AMERICA
BMG Chrysalis has signed a North American agreement with Carly Simon which will see the music rights firm handle the administration on and exploitation of all of the singer's back catalogue and future releases.

BMG Chrysalis North America's Chief Creative Office Richard Blackstone told CMU: "Over the years, Carly Simon has taken us on an irresistible musical journey. She has captured our hearts through so many of her soulful hits and we are thrilled that she has chosen to continue that journey with BMG".

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JESSIE J WORKING ON NEW SONGS
With her debut album now but a distant memory, having been released two weeks ago, Jessie J has begun writing songs for the follow-up.

She told The Daily Star: "For the next album, I've got three or four songs already written. People say albums should be slices of your life, but to me it should be the whole time. I've had all my life to write this first album, and I don't want to end up having six weeks to write the second. It would only be what I've gone through in those six weeks, which could end up being promo, press, fans and paps - that's not what I want to write about. Until recently, I was a stranger walking around".

Looking back on those happier, more innocent times, she continued: "I could cry on a bridge in the rain and nobody would bat an eyelid. Now if I did it'd be: 'Jessie J breaks down. Why can't she cope?' Songwriting is a weird balance to get right, but I think if you do it continuously, there'll be a thread. On the next album I want to take how good I am in concert on to the record".

If I saw someone crying on a bridge in the rain, I'd probably wonder if they were about to throw themselves off it, whether they were Jessie J or not. Although, if it was raining fairly hard, the tears might go unnoticed. Either way, I think people might be concerned.

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EDDIE VEDDER ANNOUNCES UKULELE ALBUM
Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder has announced that he will release a new solo album on 30 May via the band's own Universal imprint, Monkeywrench Records, which will feature original songs and covers played on the ukulele. The album will include guest appearances from Glen Hansard of The Frames and Swell Season and Cat Power. Vedder will also release a live DVD directed by Fugazi's Brendan Canty the same day.

'Ukulele Songs' tracklist:

Can't Keep
Sleeping By Myself
Without You
More Than You Know
Goodbye
Broken Heart
Satellite
Longing To Belong
Hey Fahkah
You're True
Light Today
Sleepless Nights (feat Glen Hansard)
Once In Awhile
Waving Palms
Tonight You Belong To Me (feat Cat Power)
Dream A Little Dream

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AUTOKRATZ ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM
AutoKratz have announced that they will release their second album, 'Self Help For Beginners', on 30 May. Produced by Jagz Kooner, the album will feature collaborations with Primal Scream's Andrew Innes and New Order's Peter Hook.

Of the track he worked on, 'Becoming The Wraith', Hook told CMU: "I was delighted to be asked by autoKratz. Playing on the track was very easy and the boys made it very enjoyable. I've just listened to the track and then gone for a walk and found myself singing it over and over again - It's a great!"

You can download one of two bonus tracks from the new album, 'A-Train', for free here: www.mediafire.com/?xmosu8nci3w52kl

The band will play a headline show at The Scala in London on 9 Apr, with a wider UK tour to be announced soon. While you wait for that, please peruse the album's tracklist:

Opposite of Love
Becoming The Wraith (feat Peter Hook)
Fireflies
Last Light
The Seventh Seal
Skin Machine
Kick (feat Andrew Innes)
The Fallen
My Own Black Heart
RISE
Their Gun
Every Little Scar (bonus track)
A-Train (bonus track)

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FOO FIGHTERS TO TOUR GARAGES
Foo Fighters have announced that they will head out on a tour of garages to give fans the chance to experience the band's new album, 'Wasting Light', as it was recorded. Except in their own garages, rather than Dave Grohl's. And presumably the fans won't have fully-equipped recording studios in their garages, they'll probably have Christmas decorations and paint and stuff in there. But other than that, it'll be exactly the same.

A competition to find garages in the US that could accommodate the band and 50 fans at a time is being run by Blackberry at www.foofightersgaragetour.com.

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BJÖRK ANNOUNCES MANCHESTER RESIDENCY
Björk will take up residency at the Campfield Market Hall in Manchester for three weeks in June and July to premiere a new show as part of this year's Manchester International Festival, it has been announced. Entitled 'Biophilia', the show will play six times in the 1800 capacity venue.

What form the show will take is not exactly clear, though the MIF website says: "Where do music, nature and technology meet? Björk introduces 'Biophilia', her most ambitious and exciting work to date. A multimedia project encompassing music, apps, internet, installations and live shows, 'Biophilia' celebrates how sound works in nature, exploring the infinite expanse of the universe, from planetary systems to atomic structure".

But don't worry, if that all turns out to be a bit bum, she'll also be playing some of her hits. More information here: mif.co.uk/event/bjork-br-biophilia/

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HIDDEN CAMERAS, WOODPIGEON FOR CANADA DAY SHOW
Canadian musicians The Hidden Cameras, Woodpigeon and Devon Sproule will all perform at The Barbican on 2 Jul as part of this year's Canada Day celebrations. And because that's such a great line-up, I'm going to let the fact that Canada Day is on 1 Jul pass.

As well as this evening event, the Canadian Independent Music Association will be hosting a free stage at the Barbican during the afternoon featuring performances from Linda McRae, Ryan Driver, Mantler and Sandro Perri, plus a screening of Chilly Gonzales' brilliant 'jazz chess' film, 'Ivory Tower'.

More information from www.barbican.org.uk/music/event-detail.asp?ID=12041

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FESTIVAL LINE-UP UPDATE

BECONS FESTIVAL, Heslaker Farm, Skipton, Yorkshire, 11-14 Aug: So far announced for this year's Becons Festival, which takes place on the picturesque Yorkshire Dales, are Toddla T, Wolf People, Ghostpoet, Andy Votel, Dutch Uncles, D/R/U/G/S, The Phantom Band, Polar Bear, Willy Mason, Twilight Sad, The Apples, Ramadanman, Mazes, Pariah, Star Slinger, I Like Trains, Islet, Fantastic Mr Fox, Napoleon IIIrd and Girl Unit. And the brilliant Demdike Stare. www.greetingsfrombeacons.com

BESTIVAL, Robin Hill Country Park, Isle Of Wight, 8-11 Sep: Bill-toppers Pendulum and PJ Harvey lead the latest acts unveiled for this year's edition of Bestival, flanked by a huge further array of choice additions such as Fatboy Slim, The Maccabees and Kelis. Chromeo, Cut Copy, The Drums and Mogwai will also perform at the four-day bash, which is not to be confused with its holiday camp-themed counterpart Camp Bestival. www.bestival.net

WIRELESS, Hyde Park, London, 1-3 Jul: The dynamic Grace Jones will be adding some avant-garde pop glamour to the rock-themed Saturday Wireless bill, of which Pulp are the already-confirmed headliners. The Naked & Famous, DeVotchka, The Like, and Summer Camp will also take to the stage. www.wirelessfestival.co.uk

Y-NOT, Matlock, Derbyshire, 5-8 Aug: Organisers have booked fusion collective The Go! Team to head up proceedings on Y-Not's opening day, with acts including Dutch Uncles, Swimming, Tribes and Jake Morley also set to join existing headliners Maximo Park on an eclectic billing. www.ynotfestivals.co.uk

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LIVE REVIEW: Surfer Blood at The Scala in London on 9 Mar
One fact I did not know about Surfer Blood until after they walked on stage: the collective age of this quintet of strapping young (operative word) gentleman is under a century. Well, maybe a little over it, but probably not by much. Why was I so surprised? Maybe it's because I was forced upon their debut by a friend (the kind of guy who listens to 'old music you have never heard of, so don't ask'), and the fact that I barely ever 'Google image' bands as I'm listening to them; so, to me, they sounded like old souls. And perhaps they are just that: old souls trapped in bodies younger than I am, a refreshing yet disturbingly depressing thought.

So there we have it: Surfer Blood, who are kind of like a bastardisation of the young Beach Boys (during their 'Beach Boys Party' years), old Weezer (praise be), The Shins and Joy Division, are a spritely gang of college geeks. Frontman JP Pitts is Augustus Gloop grown up handsome, a peacocky, peculiar young man who dances around the stage in a camp, awkward sort of fashion that makes him all the more endearing in his oddness. He bops around to crowd-favourite 'Take It Easy', he bashes his guitar about against the speakers (deafening us in the process), he interacts with the audience for longer moments between songs, like we're all old friends. It's fun.

The band surf (geddit?) their way through most of 'Astro Coast', adding in a few previously unheard new songs along the way, which builds up anticipation for their next album. 'Swim' doesn't make it onto the setlist until last, and releasing it onto the crowd feels kind of like a relief. It's what everyone, apparently, had been waiting for, but personally I enjoyed 'Fast Jabroni' and the aforementioned very poppy 'Take It Easy' a hell of a lot better.

It's an energetic, sweaty, fantastically fun night. It's not all down to youth, and that's no longer a factor anymore: these boys know what they're doing and how to do it to an alarmingly great effect, and age is but merely a number. TW

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IS APPLE MUSIC LOCKER LAUNCH IMMINENT? PROBABLY NOT
There's speculation doing the rounds that Apple will launch its digital music locker service next month, and that it is pressuring the majors to sign up ahead of the launch, though some say such rumours are somewhat wide of the mark.

As previously reported, it is thought both Apple and Google are developing so called digital locker services whereby people can upload their digital music collections to a central server and stream that music via any net-connected device using a user-friendly music player.

There is much debate as to whether such a service needs a new license from content owners, assuming users have legitimately purchased all their MP3s, though the record labels reckon they do. It is thought Apple will overcome this by initially making it so only music bought via iTunes can be played via the locker, and having existing iTunes licensing deals with the majors rewritten to allow such a thing.

Rumours of an imminent announcement on the Apple music locker are seemingly based on the fact the IT giant is expected to announce a step up of its MobileMe service next month, and some reckon Apple will use an expansion of music functionality on that platform as a stepping stone towards entering the digital music locker market place.

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COMMERICAL RADIO CHIEF SAYS: "LET US RUN BBC LOCAL RADIO"
Commercial radio group Orion Media, which operates various local stations in the Midlands, has proposed that the BBC should pay it to run a local radio service in the Birmingham area because it reckons it could provide a good speech-based service much more cost effectively.

The proposal follows news the BBC is considering cutting the amount of locally-produced output on its network of local stations in England, pumping out 5Live on its local frequencies in off peak time periods instead. Such a move is one of a number of cost cutting methods currently be reviewed by BBC bosses.

But Orion boss Phil Riley says the suggestion Birmingham might lose its locally-produced BBC service is "outrageous", telling Radio Today: "This city creates a mass of news and sport stories everyday. It is unacceptable that the BBC should be cutting back on its service to the city. We already have an accomplished and credible news and sports team based at [Orion-owned Birmingham station] BRMB ready and willing to provide the service. Great talk radio is about not just news, but local presenters, interesting guests and listeners who want to participate and reflect the richness of the area where they live".

Riley added that he reckoned he could provide the services currently offered by the BBC's West Midlands local station on about half the budget. A spokesman for the Beeb said it had received Riley's proposal and would respond in due course, while adding no decisions had been made about the future of their local radio services.

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KONNIE HUQ QUITS XTRA FACTOR
Konnie Huq will not appear on the next series of 'X-Factor' spin-off 'Xtra Factor', it has been announced. The former 'Blue Peter' presenter took over from Holly Willoughby last year. She is now working on a new show for Discovery.

Announcing her departure, Huq said: "I loved doing the 'Xtra Factor'. It was so exciting. But I also cannot wait to start filming my new show for Discovery in China".

A spokesperson for 'Xtra Factor' producers Talkback Thames added: "We thank Konnie for her contribution to the 'Xtra Factor'. We wish her all the very best for the future".

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MEL B PREGNANT
Melanie Brown aka Mel B aka Scary Spice has announced that she is pregnant for the third time. Her first child, Phoenix Chi was born in 1999 with first husband Jimmy Gulzar. Eddie Murphy father her second daughter, Angel, in 2007, though this was subject to a much publicised paternity dispute on Murphy's part. Brown married film producer Stephen Belafonte the same year, who also has a six year old daughter, Giselle.

Speaking to Hello! magazine, she said: "We're really thrilled. We wouldn't have planned and waited for four years to have a baby if we weren't excited and ready for it... We're really happily married, and we're both very much in love".

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DURAN DURAN: WORKING WITH TIMBALAND WAS A FUCKING NIGHTMARE
Duran Duran have described working on three tracks for their 2007 album, 'Red Carpet Massacre' with Timbaland as "a fucking nightmare".

John Taylor told The Quietus: "That whole project was a fucking nightmare. We delivered an album to Sony that was a natural-sounding, almost rock album, and they were like: 'We need something a bit pop, do you fancy doing a couple of tracks with Timbaland?'"

Nick Rhodes continued: "The thing was, we got an opportunity to work with Timbaland, so we thought: 'Great, let's go for it'. We knew it was a risk in terms of what the fans would like, if you're working with someone who is ostensibly an electro/hip hop producer. When Timbaland saw the guitar and the bass and the drums come in to the studio, I think he was mortified, because everything's in a box for those guys. But I'm really glad we made that album, because in time I think it will stand up".

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Andy Malt
Editor
Chris Cooke
Business Editor &
Co-Publisher
Caro Moses
Co-Publisher
           
Eddy Temple-Morris
Columnist
Paul Vig
Club Tipper
Wyclef Jean
Left Hand Man

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Floor 3 Unicorn House, 221-222 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6PJ.

UnLimited Publishing also publish ThreeWeeks, ThisWeek in London and CreativeStudent.net.

UnLimited Creative provides design, content, digital and communication services.

UnLimited Insights provides media, music and communications training.

UnLimited Consulting provides music, media, culture + youth expertise.