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MONDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 2011
TODAY'S FEATURE: THE FIVE DAY FORECAST
Hello. If you're looking at this in the CMU Daily email, then you'll have noticed that something is different. I've just got back from a brief stay in a nineteenth century fort in Pembrokeshire, which is nice. But after all that history, I required something brand new to offset it. Welcome, therefore, to the new look CMU Daily. Isn't it shiny? I like it, I hope you like it, too. more>>
TODAY'S APPROVED: LANA DEL REY
Sultry singing sort Lana Del Rey drew admirers in their droves with her debut single 'Video Games', attracting rapt comparisons to the dusky tones of alt-jazz glamorpuss Cat Power, the pin-up style of Lana Turner, and the flirtatious hip hop patter associated with R&B femmes Nicki Minaj and Lil Kim. Disparate as they might seem, these qualities all resonate together in more>>
TOP STORIES
- Industry welcomes government's latest live licensing consultation
- Winehouse Senior talks about Amy's death
IN THE POP COURTS
- EMI loses web-blocking case in Germany
- EMI returns to MP3tunes case
- Victim of Berrabah fracas says Sugababe should be sacked
POP POLITICS
- Chumbawamba man not impressed with UKIP using his hit
CHARTS, STATS & POLLS
- Adele and Doris break chart records
GIGS & TOURS NEWS
- Jamie Foxx to host Jackson tribute show
- Pusha T announces London show
- 65daysofstatic to score live dance project
- Frank Zappa's son tours
THE MUSIC BUSINESS
- BRIT-winning producer launches new company
- IMPALA appoints new board
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- Facebook updates better done direct
AND FINALLY...
- McGee offers "no apology" for [PIAS] fire comments
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INDUSTRY WELCOMES GOVERNMENT'S LATEST LIVE LICENSING CONSULTATION
Various representatives of the music business have welcomed the government's latest consultation on entertainment licensing, which it's hoped will, once and for all, remove bureaucracy put in place by the 2003 Licensing Act that makes it harder for grass roots gigs to take place.

As much previously reported, red tape introduced by the 2003 Act has had a negative impact on the number of pubs and such like staging music events, reducing the number of opportunities for grass roots musicians to play live. Various government and parliamentary reports have supported reducing the amount of bureaucracy associated with smaller gigs, and Lord Tim Clement-Jones' Live Music Bill made proposals as to how that could be done.

Although you might wonder - we did - whether the government really needs yet another consultation on this issue, given the reports that have gone before and Clement-Jones's bill, which is still working its way through parliament, various music business reps have welcomed the announcement last week by Tourism & Heritage Minister John Penrose that his department will again consult, mainly because of increased optimism that this time something might actually be done about the unnecessary elements of the 2003 Act.

Having already spoken to The Guardian about the consultation last week, UK Music's Feargal Sharkey told CMU over the weekend: "Earlier this year, UK Music highlighted how large-scale live music attracts £1.4bn of tourism to the UK. However, the success of our festivals and arenas - indeed, the success of our entire industry - is reliant upon a vibrant grass roots music scene. This is where raw talent emerges. We are therefore delighted that government has adopted such a forward-thinking approach. Enabling live music to flourish has potential to drive social cohesion, entrepreneurialism and economic growth. While continuing to support Lord Clement-Jones' Live Music Bill, UK Music warmly welcomes this consultation and all other measures that would remove red tape for the benefit of musicians and creative talent".

Musicians' Union top man John Smith added: "We welcome this consultation and the government's intention to cut red tape for live music. At the very least, we hope that the result will be to implement an exemption for small venues putting on live music with fewer than 200 people in attendance, which we have been lobbying for for many years now. We therefore also support the proposals outlined in Lord Clement-Jones' Live Music Bill, which [proposes such an exemption]".

Meanwhile Live Nation exec Paul Latham, speaking as head of the UK Live Music Group, which brings together various live sector trade bodies, said: "Live music provides a huge boost to the UK's economy and is a significant part of this country's social fabric. To ensure future success it is vital that we sustain a healthy grass roots scene, where musicians and artists from every region have the widest possible opportunity to build a career. It is pleasing that Government recognises this fact and we look forward to engaging with this consultation in the weeks ahead".

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WINEHOUSE SENIOR TALKS ABOUT AMY'S DEATH
Mitch Winehouse has told a US talk show that he believes his daughter Amy died after suffering a seizure, related to alcohol detoxification, when there was simply "nobody there to rescue her".

Talking on a new syndicated TV show fronted by CNN journalist Anderson Cooper, Winehouse said that while there was some alcohol in his daughter's blood stream at the time of her death, it's not clear that that contributed to her passing, and that there were also traces of the prescription drug Librium, which is used to fight anxiety and the withdrawal symptoms of alcoholism, and that it could have actually been the singer's efforts to detox that caused her untimely demise.

Although stressing this was just a theory, and that a full inquest into his daughter's death was due to start soon, Winehouse Senior noted: "Everything Amy did, she did to excess. She drank to excess and did detox to excess". He added that Amy's efforts to beat her alcohol dependency were achieving results, with ever longer periods of abstinence and shorter periods of drinking, though he says that he regrets his daughter did not consult a doctor about her detox, because she had suffered seizures during this time and something similar may have resulted in her death.

Continuing, Winehouse said that while Amy was regularly taking harder drugs, including heroin and cocaine, her untimely death would not have come as a surprise, but that given her recent progress in overcoming past demons her passing in July was a shock. Though he revealed that when he was called by the singer's security guard shortly after her demise, he could immediately tell from the tone of his voice that something was seriously wrong, and that he therefore opened the conversation by asking: "Is she dead?"

Mitch added that while he blamed Amy's ex-husband Blake Fielder Civil for introducing his daughter to harder drugs, he did not blame him for her death because she had successfully kicked those substances at the end of 2008. He concluded by confirming that the outpouring of support from his daughter's fans continued to provide comfort for his family as they still come to terms with her premature death.

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EMI LOSES WEB-BLOCKING CASE IN GERMANY
EMI has failed to force a German ISP to block access to file-sharing service eDonkey, after a court in Cologne ruled that the net firm was not liable for the actions of its customers. One specific customer of ISP HanseNet accused of illegally sharing unlicensed music via the P2P service was named in the lawsuit, albeit with their name redacted in the court's published decision.

Of course, rights owners are increasingly calling for ISPs to block access to websites that primarily exist to aid infringement, especially when those websites are based in territories where fighting and enforcing infringement lawsuits is difficult.

In some countries there have been efforts to introduce new laws that offer rights owners a high-speed injunction system for forcing infringing sites to be blocked, but in other jurisdictions rights owners have tried to secure web-blocking court orders under existing laws, either by extending the concept of contributory infringement or the systems put in place to stop other illegal activity on the net, such as fraud and the distribution of images of child abuse. Where rights owners have relied on existing laws, courts in different countries have responded in different ways.

As previously reported, in July in the UK the Motion Picture Association successfully got an injunction ordering BT to block access to Newzbin2, an online community that provides links to all sorts of unlicensed content, and which relocated its base to Sweden after losing an earlier infringement lawsuit.

In the German case, EMI went the contributory infringement route, arguing that if HanseNet failed to block access to a site it knew was enabling a customer to infringe copyright, then it too should be liable for the infringement. But the net firm argued that was not the case, because under European Law it could not be held liable for the actions of its customers. It also added that web-blocking was pointless because such blocks could be easily circumvented by web-savvy file-sharers.

The German judge concurred with HanseNet, adding that for the ISP to interfere with a customer's browsing would actually infringe German communication law. According to TorrentFreak, he also said he was convinced by HanseNet's arguments that web-blocking was ineffective and therefore "useless".

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EMI RETURNS TO MP3TUNES CASE
Elsewhere in EMI losing lawsuits news, there's been an interesting development in the major's legal squabble with Michael Robertson's digital locker service MP3Tunes.com.

As previously reported, EMI sued the unlicensed MP3Tunes.com over its music-focused digital locker service, and also another platform it operates which allows users to store and share links to other online sources of music, many of which are also unlicensed. MP3Tunes.com argued that its digital locker did not need a licence from music companies, and that it was protected from liability for misuse of its links store service by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, providing it operates a takedown service to remove links to illegal content when made aware of them.

Although the courts criticised MP3tunes.com for running a slack takedown system, and Robertson personally for posting links to unlicensed content, they agreed with the digital firm that they could not be liable for any misuse of the links service by other people because of DMCA protection.

The interesting development is that EMI has filed new papers asking the court to reconsider its ruling regards any links to unlicensed tracks that were released before 1972. This is because federal copyright law cannot overrule state copyright rules for content published before 1972. Universal Music is using the same legal anomaly in its lawsuit against sharing-and-streaming service Grooveshark, which also claims it is protected by the DMCA safe harbour clauses.

It will be interesting to see how the courts react to this re MP3tunes.com. It could put a strain on the DMCA if it is decided that safe harbour principles do not apply to pre-1972 content.

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VICTIM OF BERRABAH FRACAS SAYS SUGABABE SHOULD BE SACKED
The woman who was assaulted by Sugababe Amelle Berrabah at a London club last year has said she does not believe the singer is sorry, and that she should be sacked from the girl group as a result.

Berrabah was found guilty of common assault earlier this month after a fracas with one Danielle Dodoo at Soho hang-out Alto last year. According to Dodoo, Berrabah attacked her after she told the singer to "watch where she was going". The rather drunk Babe put her hands around Dodoo's neck, scratching her in the process, and threatened to bite her nose off. Lovely.

Dodoo says she initially made a complaint to the club's management, but after waiting two hours for them to do something about it she discovered Alto was run by Berrabah's boyfriend, so chose to leave and report the incident to the police instead.

For her part, Berrabah denied the run-in was serious enough to constitute assault, saying she may have pinched Dodoo, but did not grip or scratch her. However, the judge hearing the case concluded that the singer had inflicted "nasty, unpleasant" injuries in the incident. However, he added that he felt Dodoo had taken her complaint this far partly out of "revenge and spite", and therefore let the Babe off with a conditional discharge, ordering her to pay just £250 in compensation to her victim.

Speaking to the Daily Star since the ruling, Dodoo said: "Amelle may have apologised to the band, her fans and her management but she hasn't once said sorry to me. How can she be a good role model for young girls? It's disgusting. All I did was ask her politely to stop barging into me, when she launched herself at me. She's not sorry for what she's done. If she was, she'd have made a public apology to me. The bottom line is that I don't believe Amelle deserves to be in a group like the Sugababes after she's been convicted of a crime".

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CHUMBAWAMBA MAN NOT IMPRESSED WITH UKIP USING HIS HIT
Chumbawamba's ex-frontman has hit out at the UK Independence Party for using his former's band's hit 'Tubthumping' during its annual conference in Eastbourne this weekend. Apparently the song played as the party's leader Nigel Farage took to the stage.

Dunstan Bruce told The Guardian he was angry that the right-leaning anti-Europe party chose to use his former band's pro-anarchy song, telling the broadsheet: "This song being used by UKIP is so wrong. I am absolutely appalled that this grubby little organisation are stealing our song to use for their own ends. It's beyond the pale and if they use it again we will consider legal action".

Unfortunately for Bruce, and as previously noted, assuming the venue used by UKIP has the appropriate public performance licences, there is nothing he could do under copyright law to stop the anti-Europeans using his songs at their conference. All I can suggest is that, having been knocked down by Farage and friends, Bruce gets up again and pisses the night away.

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ADELE AND DORIS BREAK CHART RECORDS
Not only did Adele last week become the first artist ever to sell three million units of one album in the UK in one calendar year, she also broke a US chart record. She scored the highest leap within the Billboard Hot 100 to not be the result of a song's release. Yeah, a bit nebulous, but hey it's chart record all the same. Adele's 'Someone Like You' recently rose from nineteen to number one in the Billboard chart based on her performance at the MTV VMA awards. Super.

But hey Adele, move out of the way will you, we've got another lady waiting here patiently for her chart record to be confirmed. Doris Day became the oldest singer to have an album of new work (well, previously unreleased work, most of it was actually recorded before 1994) in the UK top ten yesterday, her long player 'My Heart' being at number nine and she being 87. Well done to Doris, both for selling lots of records, and for not being dead.

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JAMIE FOXX TO HOST JACKSON TRIBUTE SHOW
Jamie Foxx says he is "truly honoured" to be hosting the up coming Michael Jackson tribute concert, which will take place in Cardiff next month, despite various family members and fan groups of the late king of pop criticising the timing of the show (as his former doctor Conrad Murray stands trial for causing his death), and amid reports ticket prices for the event are being slashed after poor sales.

Foxx will join Smokey Robinson, Christina Aguilera, Cee Lo Green and Craig David at the show. He told MTV: "Michael was larger than life and I have admired him, honoured him, joked about him but always loved and respected him. I hope I honour his legacy in a way that would make him laugh and cry".

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PUSHA T ANNOUNCES LONDON SHOW
Well, I never. Ex-Clipse contingent Pusha T is booked to turn up at east London landmark the Rhythm Factory on 24 Sep for a pleasant evening of live music. Held in the name of hyping the fresh Def Jam signing's forthcoming EP 'Fear Of God 2: Let Us Pray', the show will be his sole UK date this year.

Check out Pusha counting the spoils of his success (and ignoring his girlfriend) in the video for latest single 'Feeling Myself', here: launch.vidaroo.com/9342

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65DAYSOFSTATIC TO SCORE LIVE DANCE PROJECT
Instrumental noise outfit 65daysofstatic have revealed details of a live collaboration with Brazilian choreographer Jean Abreu, which is due to air at the London South Bank's Queen Elizabeth Hall on 21 Sep.

The band will perform their original score to Abreu's prison-based dance production 'INSIDE', which will reportedly explore themes of "violence, incarceration, solitude and hope" behind bars. Take a look at the trailer here: vimeo.com/11530143

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FRANK ZAPPA'S SON TOURS
Perhaps the least strangely-named of Frank Zappa's children, eldest son Dweezil, will be performing songs from his late father's avant-rock catalogue across a string of winter dates.

Says Dweezil of the show, which will feature a section of synchronised footage of Zappa Senior: "Not only will we be performing with Frank once again via the technological wonderment of enhanced video during the live performance, but we will also be performing the works from one of his most well known albums. We'll have some other surprises in the set as well. We always strive to learn new material each time we tour and this time we're going to dig deep".

17 Nov: York, Barbican
18 Nov: Gateshead, The Sage
19 Nov: Edinburgh, Picturehouse
21 Nov: Liverpool, Philharmonic Hall
22 Nov: Manchester, Bridgewater Hall
23 Nov: Cambridge, Corn Exchange
24 Nov: Basingstoke, Anvil
26 Nov: Coventry, Warwick Arts Centre
27 Nov: Leicester, De Montford Hall
28 Nov: Oxford, New Theatre
29 Nov: London, Barbican
30 Nov: Bristol, Colston Hall
1 Dec: Brighton, Dome

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BRIT-WINNING PRODUCER LAUNCHES NEW COMANY
Last year's BRIT-winning Producer Of The Year Markus Dravs has launched a new production and publishing company to be called Casa-D, and has confirmed a deal with Kobalt which will handle copyright administration and provide creative and sync services to the new firm.

Introducing his new company, Dravs told CMU: "The idea behind Casa-D Productions is to form a creative hub, from which I can collaborate with other musicians, top line writers and lyricists to write and/or produce new songs both for other artists and for release ourselves via Casa-D. Having discussed the principles and ideas with Sas Metcalfe, I am extremely flattered to have been offered the opportunity to be supported by Kobalt".

Kobalt's Sas Metcalfe added: "Already one of the most respected producers in the world, Markus is now adding a songwriting aspect to his role along with developing his own publishing company. We're really looking forward to working with him on both levels and are excited about what talents he will bring to Kobalt in the future".

The next big release on which Dravs has worked is Coldplay's fifth album 'Mylo Xyloto', out next month, while he is currently in the studio with Mumford & Sons working on their second long player.

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IMPALA APPOINTS NEW BOARD
Pan-European indie label trade body IMPALA held its Annual General Meeting at the Popkomm music business conference in Berlin last week. The body's board will now be chaired by Jonas Sjöström Edel and Playground, while Mark Kitcatt of Everlasting Records join Naïve's Patrick Zelnik and [PIAS]'s Michel Lambot as Co-Presidents.

IMPALA Exec Chair Helen Smith told CMU: "We are delighted Jonas and Mark are stepping up, along with five new board members. The diversity and experience of the board will shape our vision for the next two years and launch new initiatives to help independents and their artists be more competitive".

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FACEBOOK UPDATES BETTER DONE DIRECT
An interesting bit of advice for anyone managing an artist or label's Facebook activity, reported by EdgeRank and spotted by Billboard. Apparently if you post your updates to the social network via third-party tools like HootSuite and TweetDeck, for various reasons, you "reduce your engagement per fan by an average of 70%".

EdgeRank note: "In order to maximise your Facebook marketing efforts, we advise that you post directly on Facebook.com or use an Official Facebook App (iPhone, Blackberry, etc). Posting directly will give your posts the greatest chance of engagement. Don't immediately abandon third Party APIs, they still have their place in social marketing. We recommend not relying on them day-to-day for Facebook updates".

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MCGEE OFFERS "NO APOLOGY" FOR [PIAS] FIRE COMMENTS
Alan McGee has written on his new Huffington Post blog saying that he makes "no apology" for recently saying that he thought that the Sony DADC warehouse burning down was funny. The former Creation Records boss claims that the furore that blew up around the quote, made on stage at Australian music business conference BigSound last week, was just "wet liberal bullshit" from the "British PC media".

As previously reported, during the 30 minute Q&A session last week, the former Creation Records owner said: "I read that the Sony building burnt down. I'm probably the only person who thought that was funny. I call that a result. Got rid of all the shit music. And you get paid for it [via insurance, for] the stuff you couldn't sell".

In his blog post, seemingly still unaware that Sony Music itself didn't store any products in the warehouse, McGee wrote: "I laughed at Sony's Enfield warehouse burning down when people were rioting. I thought it was funny then and still do now ... All that shit music burned into the ether - why wouldn't I laugh?"

He continued: "I actually walked away from music four years ago so I was unaware [PIAS] had any offices or records stored there. I have no issue with [PIAS] but I do however hate Sony - it's personal. So there is no apology and there is no retraction. In a 30 minute speech in Brisbane, this was a ten second comment".

Musing further he said that there was nothing to worry about anyway: "I just thought a load of shit music getting destroyed was doing the world a favour! So there is no apology and there is no retraction. In truth, Sony and [PIAS] will be insured for every single unit at cost and so will get their money back on a load of CDs which were never going to sell anyway! It is all wet liberal bullshit, basically".

Taking a positive from the whole situation, McGee said: "All that Twitter attention has now doubled my price for speaking engagements, so my agent has informed me. So, I thank the PC police for upping my future fees".

So, there you go conference organisers, one retired music industry figure who admits he doesn't really know what's going on any more available for hire now. Manufactured controversy included.

Read the full post here: www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/alan/i-have-no-issue-with-pias_b_957590.html

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