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CMU Info
Top Stories
Three-strikes will cost £6 million, and is subject to EDM
Joss Stone relaxes with the Robster after traumatic week
In The Pop Courts
Lady Gaga fined for petal-based crimes
Ark disappointed by Friday takedown
Men At Work man comments on the Kookaburra dispute
Clarence Clemons dies
Cay frontwoman dies
Awards & Contests
BT Digital Music Awards open for contenders
Release News
Brown and Bieber body-pop their way through the apocalypse
Gigs & Tours News
Winehouse cancels euro-dates after shambolic show
Festival News
Festival line-up update
Single review: Crystal Stilts - Shake The Shackles (Fortuna Pop!)
The Music Business
Universal US merge back offices of Motown and Def Jam divisions
US publishing chief calls for more collective licensing
Imagem appoint new US Creative Director
PPL appoint new technology man
The Digital Business
Qriocity music service comes to Android
The Media Business
BBC confirm The Voice deal
And finally...
Noel Gallagher gets married

Well, Friday turned out to be exciting. I celebrated a former member of the CMU team's 30th birthday, but before that spent an hour and a half standing in the rain waiting for the fire brigade to put out a fire at CMU HQ. Thankfully, there was very little damage done. Though we no longer have a ladies toilet. Whoever heard of a toilet catching fire, it's ridiculous. Anyway, as a result I'm not writing this from the CMU office on Friday evening as planned, I'm writing it on a train on a soot-covered laptop. OK, I've cleaned the laptop now, but that sounds less dramatic. So, with the smoke now cleared, here are some things happening this week that will hopefully involve no fire whatsoever...

01: John Robb tackles US visas for UK musicians. Music journalist and Goldblade frontman John Robb will this week meet with Culture Minister Ed Vaizey alongside Labour MP Kerry McCarthy to call on the government to pressure the US to sort out its ever-complex visa system, which he reckons is constraining the ability of British musicians to travel and work in America. Visa applications for the US can be costly, time-consuming and confusing, while American bands coming to the UK have it relatively easy. It's hoped this discrepancy can be ironed out in the near future.

02: Radio 2Day. Radio 2 is following Radio 1_s lead this Wednesday and staging a special day (OK, R1 did a week) to promote its specialist show output during daytime. On 22 Jun, the BBC station will broadcast twelve one hour shows, each presented by two of the network's off-peak DJs.

03: The Wombles at Glastonbury. Not since Jay-Z headlined Glastonbury in 2008 has there been so much controversy around one act's appearance at the festival. In fact, as the criticism this time comes right from the top of the event itself, it's perhaps an even bigger deal. Two weeks ago, Michael Eavis said that he was "cross" about the children's characters cum rock band's booking, which he felt was "a bit of a mistake". Still, they might brighten up your day a bit, as you battle through the unrelenting mud.

04: New releases. Good things are out this week, folks. There's Patrick Wolf's new album, 'Lupercalia', who seems a lot more cheery these days, Bon Iver's second effort, the debut solo album from Fuck Buttons' Benjamin Power under the name Blanck Mass, Atari Teenage Riot's first full-length effort since reforming, and The Coathangers' second album. On the singles and EPs front, there are great new releases by Jakwob, Chad Valley and Terry Lynn.

05: Gigs. Lots of one-offs (and one two-off, if there is such a thing) in London this week. Sorry readers outside London, once again I've got nothing for you. But if you will live in silly places like, I dunno, wherever it is you people live, it's your own fault. Anyway, proper people and those willing to travel will be able to catch Patrick Wolf at The Garage tonight, Graham Coxon playing a free show at The 100 Club on Wednesday, Big Boi at Heaven or Bright Eyes at the Royal Albert Hall on Thursday, and The Killers at The Scala on Wednesday and Thursday.

And don't forget to listen to the latest CMU podcast, which as ever features Chris Cooke and I discussing some of the biggest music news stories of the week. Listen and find out how to subscribe at www.thecmuwebsite.com/podcast.

Andy Malt
Editor, CMU

PS - Sorry about what I said about people who live outside London up there. I was just venting because I'm currently trying to get phone reception on a train that's speeding through the Midlands, which I'm sure you're aware is as foolish as it is frustrating. I'm sure where you live is lovely. Unless you live in Basildon.

The words 'reggae covers of Nirvana songs' should, I would hope, be enough to send you recoiling back in your chair. I'm not precious about songs, but the phrase screams novelty. It sounds like a joke that got out of hand. But in the hands of long established reggae singer Little Roy, it is none of those things. His new double A-side single, out on 27 Jun via Ark Recordings, features great versions of 'Sliver' and 'Dive'.

It probably helps that Roy has not selected obvious tracks. Okay, 'Sliver' and 'Dive' aren't the most obscure of Nirvana songs, but neither are they 'Smells Like Teen Spirit'. Of the two, 'Dive' definitely works best with its reggae work over, but 'Sliver' far from fails. Whether the quality will stay as high across the ten track album which is apparently due to follow this release later in the year remains to be seen. But for now, this single - which you can access on YouTube - is a perfect addition to your summer listening.

"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 29 Jun

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 13 Jul

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

The three-strikes system put in place by the Digital Economy Act to combat illegal file-sharing will cost nearly £6 million to launch, according to figures released by media regulator OfCom under the Freedom Of Information Act last week.

OfCom is overseeing most of the set up of the DEA's anti-piracy system, and says that it has so far spent £1.8 million and expects to pay out a further £4 million to get things up and running over the next year. Quite how setting up a letter sending system and appeals process can cost that much is anyone's guess, even with the obligation to consult and placate a plethora of stakeholders, but such is the way with government programmes. Not that the government is paying for this, the idea is that OfCom recoup their investment from content owners and internet service providers once the system is up and running (the former taking a bigger hit than the latter).

The big content owners from the music, TV and film industries which lobbied for three-strikes would probably argue that in the wider scheme of things a £6 million investment to secure the future of the wider creative industries is a price worth paying. Which is probably true. Assuming three-strikes will work, which it probably won't. And that the content industries won't eventually learn to live with file-sharing, finding new ways to monetise their copyrights, which they probably will.

Still, given that the big content owners will end up covering much of this investment - assuming three-strikes ever really gets off the ground - does it really matter? No doubt those who oppose three-strikes, especially the ISPs who have to contribute to the costs too, would say it does.

Though when OfCom responded to the FOI submission for details on the costs of three-strikes last week, most of those who oppose the copyright section of the DEA were distracted by an Early Day Motion submitted in parliament, which noted that recent United Nations report that said any anti-piracy system that could result in internet disconnections is disproportionate.

The EDM, submitted by Lib Dem MP Julian Huppert, welcomes the UN report and calls on relevant parliamentary select committees and the Department For Culture, Media & Sport, to reassess the copyright section of the DEA in the context of the UN report's recommendations. The UK Pirate Party welcomed the EDM and called on its supporters to lobby their MPs to sign it, though so far only 12 MPs have put their names to the motion.

As previously reported, ISPs BT and TalkTalk are also trying to force a review of the DEA's copyright provisions via the courts, appealing a previous judicial review ruling that rejected the net firms' objections to the Act. OfCom's costs statement last week also revealed that the two net firms were being told to pay the majority of the government's costs in relation to that original judicial review on this issue.

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Robbie Williams has been comforting Joss Stone after last week's failed kidnap plot was revealed, according to The Sun. By which they seem to mean she went to a Take That gig on Thursday night and he was chatting to her. Says the tab's source: "She's still in shock but Robbie did his best to put a smile back on her face. His cheeky chappy side was in overdrive when they met up after the gig".

The paper added that Stone was still taking the apparent plot to rob, hurt and possibly kill her in her stride, telling other back-stagers at the Take That Cardiff show that her week had "been like an episode of 'Midsomer Murders'".

As previously reported, two men were arrested near Stone's Devon home last week and found to be carrying swords, rope and a body bag in their vehicle, as well as written plans that included the line "find a river to dump her in". The two men, named as Kevin Liverpool and Junior Bradshaw, face charges of conspiracy to commit robbery and GBH.

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Lady Gaga was fined by French police last week for disturbing the peace, aka throwing rose petals out of a hotel window. The Gagasta, as I shall be calling her from this point onwards, was staying at a hotel in Paris where she was promoting her terrible new album 'Born This Way'. A group of fans had gathered outside the Park Hyatt hotel where she was staying, and, after they called her name, she appeared at a window and starting calling back, and showering them with the aforementioned petals.

Apparently this made the crowd even noisier, annoying hotel management (and probably other guests). The Gagasta ignored hotel managers when they asked her to "drop the petals and step back from the window, good lady" (possibly not their exact words, not least because they were French), so they called in the gendarmes who shot the pop star dead. No, not really, they gave her a stern talking to and fined her a few euros.

Says yet another Sun source: "Gaga was given a telling off for her antics. Hotel bosses tried to get her to come in [from the window] because of the frenzy she was creating outside but she didn't listen so the police turned up and fined her. She was like a woman possessed. You know what she's like with her fans. She threw hundreds of rose petals and shouted over and said 'I love you my little monsters'".

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The company that created Rebecca Black's mind-numbing YouTube hit 'Friday' has criticised the aspiring pop teen's family for issuing a takedown notice that means the song has been removed from the video sharing website, depriving the world of the glory that exists in its very shitness.

As previously reported, there is a mini-dispute going on as to who owns the various copyrights in the viral phenomenon, which Black's mother paid Ark Music Factory to write and record. The Blacks requested YouTube takedown the video last week, seemingly after Ark - whose account the track was linked to - put the song behind a paywall, albeit for a very short time, without consulting the teen star in the making, or her mum.

According to TMZ, the Blacks retaliated by failing to give Ark any notice of its takedown order. The gossip site quotes a rep from Ark as saying: "We're disappointed, having been in good faith negotiations with Rebecca Black and her representatives for months regarding any open issues. There's been an ongoing, open dialogue with our company. So we were blindsided to get a takedown notice - with no notice - alleging copyright infringement instead of a call or email from Rebecca's representatives". I'm not sure its possible to get a notice "without notice", but I think we all know what Mr/Ms Ark means.

I also think we all want this to end up in a very public, very bitter court battle, don't we? Or is that just me? Anyway, the Ark rep seemed to play down the chances of that, albeit in a slightly patronising tone, adding: "We are going to continue to take the high road and work out the complaint as soon as possible".

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Men At Work's Colin Hay has spoken to Undercover.fm about the legal battle his band found themselves in recently regarding the flutey bit from their biggest track 'Down Under'.

As much previously reported, the publishing company who own the rights in 'Kookaburra Sitting In An Old Gum Tree' accused the band - 28 years after they released 'Down Under' - of infringing copyright for including the famous flute riff in their track, said riff coming from, or very influenced by, the famous Aussie children's rhyme, which is often associated with the Girl Guides movement.

After some debate as to whether Larrikin Music actually owned the copyrights in the 'Kookaburra' song, the publisher eventually won their infringement lawsuit, though only winning a 5% share of 'Down Under' royalties, after originally demanding 60%.

Hay tells Undercover.fm that, while he still disagrees with the court ruling that his band's use of the flute riff was copyright infringement, most of his resentment towards Larrikin is based not on the fact they made a claim, but that they originally asked for 60% of royalties because, he says, had they asked for 5% at the outset there's a chance an agreement could have been reached without a long drawn out and very expensive legal battle.

Says Hay: "What I really regret in looking back on it is that feeling that I always have that [the court battle] was avoidable. The huge cost of litigation for three years was probably avoidable if they hadn't come in wanted 60% of 'Down Under', which is a ludicrous amount to want in the first place, and in my view completely opportunistic".

He continued: "When you think of it, even though I don't think an infringement did take place, if you look at 5% it is a much more reasonable number than 60%. It's not like if somebody asks for 60% you can say 'well that's in the ballpark'. You have to defend it. and although they won it was a hollow victory at best. It was just that they lost less than us because there are still huge costs and what they got is something that cost them a lot for relatively little gain".

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Clarence Clemons, best known as the sax player in Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, has died aged 69. As previously reported, Clemons had been seriously ill since suffering a stroke a week ago.

Born in Virginia, Clemons received a saxophone from his father as a ninth birthday present. It wasn't a welcomed gift at the time, Clemons later admitted, because he had asked for a train set. However, after a car accident ended his dreams of becoming a professional football player, he turned to music, and in 1971 met a then aspiring singer songwriter called Bruce Springsteen.

The two hit it off immediately, and Clemons was subsequently a founding member of Springsteen's E Street Band, and one of the most significant over the years, his sax solos being a distinct part of a number of The Boss's hits.

Although best known for his collaborations with Springsteen, Clemons - often known as the Big Man because of his height - worked with many other artists over the years, including Grateful Dead, Ringo Starr, Aretha Franklin, Roy Orbison and Jackson Browne. He made numerous TV and movie appearances and, in 1993, jammed with former US President Bill Clinton at his inaugural ball.

Clemons began scaling back his live performances in recent months, having been in increased pain as a result of having two knee replacements and back surgery in the last year. However, he remained in the public eye, not least because he appears on the new Lady Gaga album 'Born This Way'.

A string of tributes to the late sax player this weekend were led, of course, by Bruce Springsteen, who said in a statement on his website that the loss of the Big Man was "immeasurable", adding he and his bandmates "are honored and thankful to have known him and had the opportunity to stand beside him for nearly 40 years".

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Anet Mook, former frontwoman of London-based alt-rockers Cay, was killed in a traffic accident in her native Netherlands last week, according to the owner of the label which released the band's first EP.

With members from Sweden, the Netherlands and the UK, Cay formed in London in the mid-1990s, releasing their first EP via Org Records in 1998, and winning a fan in John Peel, who invited them to do a session on his show the same year. As the buzz grew around the band they signed to Warner's EastWest in 1999, and the generally acclaimed debut album 'Nature Creates Freaks' followed.

However, by 2000 the band was burning out, with drugs and in-fighting resulting in an early demise for the outfit, despite a growing fanbase. Although half of the original line up resigned, the remaining band never officially split, but disappeared from view, with little word on the subsequent lives or projects of most of the group's members, including Mook.

Org Records founder Sean Organ announced last week that he had been informed of Mook's death. According to reports, she was knocked over by a vehicle.

In a very frank piece about his times working with Mook, and the drugs that destroyed the band, Cay's drummer Mark Bullock wrote on his blog last week: "It breaks my heart that Anet is dead. Not because I'll miss her personally or because she and I were ever best friends, but because with her death goes a great deal of passion and possibility. Things really didn't turn out for her the way she'd hoped. It reminds me too that we're all getting older and those dreams we all shared will never come to pass. For a brief moment the world was ours and we were partners in all the exciting possibilities".

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Nominations are open for the BT Digital Music Awards 2011, which will take place at the Roundhouse in Camden on 29 Sep. Artists, music or digital companies who think they may be eligible for one or more of seven award categories will find details of how to put themselves forward at www.btdma.com.

Announcing the launch of this year's award, Lee Thompson, BT Vision's Head of Music, told reporters: "There's no doubt that musically the past 12 months have been the most exciting ever for British music with diverse talents like the brilliant Adele, Tinie Tempah, Take That and Mumford & Sons racking up millions of of digital sales worldwide. We're proud to fly the flag, support the industry and play our part to celebrate this incredible success once more with the BT Digital Music Awards this September".

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We all know that Britney Spears themed her spin on the planet's ultimate destruction around an underground dance party in her 'Till The World Ends' video. R&Pop's most dynamic dream team, known individually as Chris Brown and Justin Bieber, follow Spears' lead in their new promo for what's officially Chris' latest single 'Next 2 You', also opting to move and groove their apocalyptic cares away as the world, quite literally, falls down around them.

The 'Next 2 You' video's plot starts off quietly enough, with separate shots of Chris and Justin spending some special time with their respective love interests, but things quickly go awry when cars and hydrants start exploding, and the weather takes a turn for the worse (that's a slight understatement, by the way). Amidst the destruction and panic, the boys spot an ideal moment to perform their song, taking up their positions on stormy rooftops and decaying street corners. From then on, footage of the duo body-popping on the sidewalk is cut together with shots of citizens running around screaming as the world-ending chaos mounts.

To the dismay of Brown 'n' Bieber fangirls everywhere, a grubby-looking rough-cut of the video leaked a few weeks back, but the glossy, cinema quality edit is now available for screening. Containing startling images of Chris Brown doing the 'robot' next to an up-ended shopping cart, watch 'Next 2 You' here.

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I'm not sure why anyone goes to an Amy Winehouse gig expecting anything other than a shambles. I suppose at least in Pete Doherty's case he included a warning in his band's name. Perhaps Winehouse's promoters should start publicising her shows under the moniker Amy-Shambles.

Because, when pop stars have serious drink or drug addictions, however many press statements they issue and interviews they give telling you how they've addressed all their inner demons and everything's fine now, until they get up on stage and deliver a string of proper performances, chances are that's all spin, possibly fuelled by genuine delusions on the part of the artist and their closest allies.

Anyway, the Wino has cancelled two shows on mainland Europe this week after a terrible performance in Belgrade this weekend which, according to the BBC, mainly consisted of the British singer mumbling, fumbling and stumbling on stage for about 90 minutes. Her audience wasn't impressed, by all accounts, despite initially cheering Winehouse on. Heat have posted a video of four minutes of the show for you to enjoy and endure.

Winehouse's people initially insisted the terrible performance was not down to the booze, though few at the gig itself seemed convinced by that. Either way, the singer's management announced last night that Winehouse would return to the UK because she can't "perform to the best of her ability" just now. The plan is for her European tour to resume in Bilbao on 8 Jul, which seems ambitious, but whatever.

Of course all this is tragic given Winehouse's potential, and presumably promoters keep booking her and fans keep buying tickets in the genuine hope that this time she'll be back on form. But it's not looking like this will be the tour where that happens.

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BENICASSIM, Valencia, Spain, 14-17 Jul: Acts fresh on the Benicassim bill include Fake Blood, The Undertones, Mary Anne Hobbs, Star Slinger and Russian Red. The likes of Arcade Fire, Arctic Monkeys, The Strokes, Friendly Fires and Tinie Tempah head up the previously-confirmed bookings. www.fiberfib.com

THE BIG CHILL, Castle Deer Park, Herefordshire, 4-7 Aug: The team behind this year's ice-cool Big Chill bash have boosted their billing with the addition of BBC3 celebrity chav and comedian Lee Nelson, who will be purveying two hours' worth of beat-boxing, sing-alongs and gags for expectant crowds of festival goers. Also new to proceedings at the Herefordshire weekender are Dutch electronica duo Kraak and Smaak and eclectic eleven-piece Kormac's Big Band, as well as Lazy Habits, Star Slinger and Sepalcure. With headliners already unveiled as being Kanye West, The Chemical Brothers and Rodrigo y Gabriela, the existing bill also features a mixed array of acts including 2 Many DJs, Aloe Blacc, Wild Beasts and Jessie J. www.bigchill.net/festival

ITUNES FESTIVAL, The Roundhouse, Camden, London, throughout Jul: My Chemical Romance further swell the ranks at this iTunes-hosted free-for-all, with a one-off performance scheduled for 9 Jul. Also providing entertainment throughout the festival's long run at London's Roundhouse are acts like Arctic Monkeys, Adele, Glasvegas, Foo Fighters, Rapael Saadiq and Coldplay. www.itunesfestival.com

LOUNGE ON THE FARM, Merton Farm, Canterbury, Kent, 8-10 Jul: Husband-and-wife pop pairing Tennis and Orkland trio Unknown Mortal Orchestra join the ranks at this year's biggest yet edition of the Lounge On The Farm fest, whose newly expanded main stage will host performances from acts including headliners The Streets, Ellie Goulding and Echo & The Bunnymen. www.loungeonthefarm.co.uk

T IN THE PARK, Balado, Scotland, 8-10 Jul: Miserable goth turned chirpy troubadour Patrick Wolf heads up the latest addition to T's thriving bill, with fellow line-up newcomers Kitty Daisy & Lewis, Rival Sons and Alice Gold following closely in his rosy wake. Already in the running prior to this most recent announcement were Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay, Foo Fighters, The Strokes, Beyoncé, Pulp, The Script, Plan B, Slash, Tinie Tempah, Tom Jones and that pesky Jessie J. www.tinthepark.com

V FESTIVAL, Hylands Park, Essex/Weston Park, Staffordshire, 20-21 Aug: Perhaps off the back of their brief cameo in Katy Perry's new 'Last Friday Night' video, 'Mmmbop' trio Hanson are the latest act announced to appear at both legs of V's pop-orientated weekender. The line-up so far boasts such big name artists as Rihanna, Eminem, Arctic Monkeys, Duran Duran and Razorlight. www.vfestival.com

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SINGLE REVIEW: Crystal Stilts - Shake The Shackles (Fortuna POP!)
Chiming with album title 'In Love With Oblivion', 'Shake The Shackles' takes a liltingly detached, otherworldly stance. A frenetic opening is fuelled by fear; while tempered vocals and a jangling guitar hook provide an uneasy, brilliant loucheness that somehow manages to create a sound as chilling as it is hopeful.

Echoing, droning and psychedelic, this is pop nonchalance at its finest - though clearly drawing on psychedelia, this is a far cry from blind pastiche. Gloom-ridden vocals have the nonchalance of a half smoked cigarette, burning and penetrating and infusing the air with the sort of studied cool you can't, well, study.

Dusky yet modern; droning yet visceral, Crystal Stilts have moved their ever-haunting aesthetic into the realm of pop with stunning results. EG

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Universal Music has announced it is merging the 'back office' operations of its Motown and Island Def Jam divisions in the US. The Motown Republic Group is being revamped following the departure of its top lady, Sylvia Rhone, who has taken a job heading up a new division at the major. According to the Hollywood Reporter the restructure will result in about 20 job losses from legal, finance, publicity and A&R administration.

Confirming the revamp and downsize, Universal exec Barry Weiss, who now oversees both divisions, told reporters: "In an effort to better serve our artists and business partners, UMRG and IDJMG are reallocating resources to achieve greater efficiencies. While this will unfortunately result in some redundancy, it will allow for increased expenditures on the creative front across all of our labels, with particular plans to double our A&R investment and Universal Motown".

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The CEO of the US National Music Publishers Association has called on his sector to endorse more collective licensing in the digital domain, especially for so called mechanical rights, and for sync rights that cover things like the uploading of home made videos to YouTube that included published music.

According to Billboard, speaking at his body's AGM, David Israelite said that mechanical and some sync rights should be licensed collectively in the US - like performance rights generally are via BMI, ASCAP and SESAC - to ensure promising new digital music services can get to market. Some digital start-ups complain that the overly complex licensing system, and demands made by some rights owners for advances and equity, stop them from launching.

Israelite told his members: "If you look at the challenges of the industry, the way we license doesn't work: it is broken". He pointed to a bit of legislation considered by US Congress in 2006 which, he says, provided a good framework for such extended collective licensing.

The issue of digital licensing is more contentious than ever in the music business, with some supporting the introduction of collective licensing - via societies and licensing agencies - across the board for both recording and publishing rights, while others feel rights owners should retain the right to negotiate their own terms with digital services, including advances and other upfront incentives.

Some also say that a collecting society system, where licence negotiations have to take place on a country by country basis, would actually be more problematic for globally focused digital start ups than dealing with the big rights owners who, in theory (though often not in practice) can provide worldwide agreements.

In the UK, where PRS oversees both performance and mechanical rights in the non-digital domain, some publishers have nevertheless decided to keep mechanicals out of the collective licensing system when it comes to digital, a move criticised at The Great Escape last month by BASCA chief Patrick Rackow.

Back in the US, EMI recently did the opposite of what Israelite wants, and took some of its performing rights out of the collective licensing system to be managed in-house. Expect this debate to rumble on for some time.

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Publishers Imagem have appointed a new Creative Director for their US division. Jon Pikus, formerly a Senior Director of A&R at MySpace Records (remember that?) will be based in LA in his new role, charged with the task of both signing new talent, and managing collaborations between songwriters on the Imagem Music roster.

Confirming his new role, Pikus said: "I'd like to thank [Imagem chiefs] Richard Stumpf and André de Raaff for this opportunity. I look forward to building Imagem Music's presence in the USA by bringing in great songwriters and artists to add to our already strong international roster".

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UK recording rights collecting society PPL has appointed former Deloitte consultant Mark Douglas to the new role of Chief Technology Officer, where he will oversee the development of both internal and consumer-facing technology platforms.

Says Douglas: "I am thrilled to be joining PPL at this important stage in the company's evolution.Data and technology systems have a critically important role to play in enhancing the service we provide to the music industry and I have been hugely impressed by the way in which the PPL leadership team have embraced this. The investment over the past few years in modernising its systems' landscape and the creation of this new role are testament to the ambition of the company".

PPL MD Peter Leathem told CMU: "Mark brings with him a wealth of knowledge and experience from across the media sector. I am absolutely delighted that he has joined PPL and I am sure that he will make a significant contribution in this new and important role. It is critical for the company to develop its systems as we move forward. The industry is becoming increasingly complex and to meet the global demands of all our constituents it means that we must understand the role of evolving technology to enhance PPL's business. Mark's experience will prove invaluable in ensuring that process".

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Sony has released a new app that makes its Music UnLimited service available to users of Android-powered phones.

As previously reported, the music bit of Sony's on-demand Qriocity platform launched in the UK late last year, and is now available in the US, Australia, New Zealand and various European countries too. The service was hindered when it was hit by the same data breach as the Sony PlayStation Network, though Sony says the Qriocity network is now fully operational again everywhere except Japan.

The new app means the service, which offers a Spotify-style streaming experience to paying subscribers via PCs, PlayStations and net connected Sony TVs and Blu-ray players, will also work on any Android phones.

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The BBC have confirmed they will air a British version of 'The Voice', the 'Idol'/'X' rival where judges initially only hear and don't see wannabe contenders. The show was a hit in the Netherlands, where it debuted, and has already crossed over to the US, where Christina Aguilera is one of the judges.

BBC1 Controller Danny Cohen told reporters late last week: "I'm absolutely delighted that 'The Voice' will be coming to the BBC. It's a big, exciting and warm-hearted series and will be a fantastic Saturday night event". The show will debut on the Beeb next year.

The Daily Mail is already dissing the Corporation for the £22 million it is said to have committed to pay to secure the 'X' rival. Speculation also continues that former 'X' judges Dannii Minogue and Cheryl Cole may now be wooed for the new show.

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Noel Gallagher has married his longtime girlfriend Sara MacDonald. According to reports, the wedding was a lavish bash in Hampshire. Liam was not invited. Presumably Noel will celebrate his nuptials by taking his new missus to see The Wombles play Glastonbury this weekend.

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