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FRIDAY 23 SEPTEMBER 2011
TODAY'S FEATURE: MUSIC BUSINESS WEEK IN FIVE
So, have you all voted in AIM's new Independent Music Awards? And this applies to all of you, because three of the gongs at the inaugural awards bash from the indie label trade body are open to public vote. I'm not sure why we've not mentioned it before, but look, we're mentioning it now, and you've still got a week to vote. But before you do that, read this - your lovingly crafted Week In Five more>>
VIGSY'S CLUB TIP: GRECO-ROMAN PRESENTS... THE GABRIEL EP LAUNCH PARTY
I know I tipped it last week, but Shoreditch's XOYO has it going on again this Saturday with the official launch of Joe Goddard's new EP, which has really grown on me since I started listening to it a few weeks ago (and the title track is getting some key airplay too). With a house feel and some R&B flavas, wonky bass and garage will more>>
TOP STORIES
- Facebook announces back-end rejigs, and resulting content services
- Plans revealed for a second BRIT School
IN THE POP COURTS
- Usher accused of song theft
CHARTS, STATS & POLLS
- Pets prefer Adele in the car
ARTIST DEALS
- Domingo signs to Sony
RELEASE NEWS
- Flaming Lips stream six hour song
- Cinematic Orchestra release new short film scores
- The Twilight Sad announce new album
FILMS & SHOWS NEWS
- Record Store film looks for more funders
GIGS & TOURS NEWS
- M83 announces January tour
FESTIVAL NEWS
- Survey to assess festival sector's PR skills
BRANDS & STUFF
- Bring Me The Horizon launch BBQ sauce
THE MUSIC BUSINESS
- Finetunes launches on-demand CD production service
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- Kazaa launches iPhone app
- Vimeo launches music library
THE MEDIA BUSNESS
- Smaller radio groups reconfirm opposition to DAB shift
AND FINALLY...
- Beef Of The Week: Bow Wow v XXL
DOMINO RECORDING COMPANY, INTERNATIONAL PROMOTIONS MANAGER
Domino is seeking an experienced International Promotions Manager who would be responsible for all aspects of international promotion - including press, radio and TV - for the whole of the label roster (including Arctic Monkeys, Franz Ferdinand, Anna Calvi, The Kills and John Cale) and working closely with our international partners around the world. Minimum two years experience with artists, managers, record labels and international media is required. The position is based in our London office.

Applicants should send a CV and cover letter to: internationalpromotions@dominorecordco.com Closing date is 10 Oct.

FACEBOOK ANNOUNCES BACK-END REJIGS, AND RESULTING CONTENT SERVICES
So, Team Facebook had a big party in San Francisco yesterday, they danced a little dance, jigged a little jig, and drank some fruity cocktails. Good times. But all eyes were on the big speech from Facebook supremo Mark Zuckerberg who - for those who'd not seen the social networking king 'do a Steve Jobs' before - turns out to be a very tedious man indeed. But still, he was updating the world on some big changes on the Facebook platform, so we persevered with the tedium.

Of course everybody knew music was part of the big announcement. We also already knew that Zuckerberg's company has no aspirations to become a content provider itself, rather it is keen to encourage people to access and use existing content services run by other companies via the Facebook interface, locking content experiences to the Facebook environment, in return allowing digital content firms the opportunity to have a more obvious presence within the social network, and to make it easier for existing users to plug those services to their friends.

And that's exactly what Facebook Music will do. No less, and for time being at least, no more. What it means is that users of any participating music service will be able to allow Facebook to track their activity - what they are listening to - and to share that data with their friends and followers in real time via the new update stream, or 'ticker', that has appeared on the Facebook interface. Friends, should they wish, will then be able to listen to the same tracks at the click of a button - via whatever content service the first user is using - and if they want to they can chat about them within the Facebook platform.

Most major digital music services will be involved in some way, though it was Spotify that Zuckerberg focused on, while his CTO Bret Taylor spent quite some time going through how Clear Channel Radio's in-the-process-of-revamping I Heart Radio venture will take advantage of Facebook's new data sharing functionality.

Neither of the new services demoed actually seemed that exciting. This certainly wasn't the music music revolution Zuckerberg and Spotify's Daniel Ek seemed to imply they were about unleash. Much of what will be possible under Facebook Music can already be done by combining other existing services with Facebook or other social media (albeit, perhaps, less seamlessly), and many of the innovations regarding music do seem to be a total Last.fm rip off. Plus some possible developments we thought might come - Would services like Spotify now work through the browser? Would people signed up to rival music services be able to bond around the same artists with different sources of content? - are not included.

That said, Facebook Music may not be a revolution, but it may well result in some evolution, for two main reasons. First, even the most successful legit digital music services are really still niche products used by committed music fans. Facebook, on the other hand, has gone mainstream. Bringing the Spotify, MOGs and I Heart Radios of the world - and similar services in other genres like TV, movies and news - more overtly into the Facebook experience could help these companies build a more mainstream customer base. Which would be to everyone's advantage.

And second, and perhaps more importantly, what's happening behind the scenes at Facebook to make these new functions work is possibly more exciting than the services that will use that new functionality at launch. Providing people choose to allow Facebook to monitor their online lives, the service can automate the process of recommendation, and automatically build communities around interests, new and old, based both on talk and activity. That's potentially quite powerful. Though whether those services using this new Facebook functionality have truly harnessed that power as yet, possibly not.

Anyway, here are some quotes:

Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg: "The last five years of social networking have been about getting people signed up. Until recently people weren't sure how long the phenomenon would last. Now social networks are a ubiquitous tool used by billions of people around the world to stay connected every day ... Now we are making it so you can connect to anything you want. Now you don't have to like a book, you can just read a book. You don't have to like a movie; you can just watch a movie".

Spotify boss Daniel Ek (to Robert Scoble): "[Zuckerberg] started using Spotify two or three years ago and really liked the product. Sean Parker is an investor in Spotify too. I think we were definitely in sync that music is one of the most powerful social objects there is, I don't know who took the first step, but we're really focused on getting more people to engage with music on Facebook".

Rhapsody President John Irwin (via the New York Post): "The more you help people discover music, the more social it is, the more they will be engaged. If they're more engaged, then they're more likely to subscribe".

VEVO CEO Rio Caraeff (via The Guardian): "Today's announcement is a big step forward in Vevo's mission to bring more music to more fans in more places. A deeper integration with Facebook will help VEVO grow its scale and reach to new heights, while better targeting our connected, socially-savvy audience".

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PLANS REVEALED FOR A SECOND BRIT SCHOOL
Tory Lord Kenneth Baker yesterday announced plans to launch a second BRIT School, this time in the North West within the Media City complex in Salford. The former Conservative minister, who in the late 1980s spearheaded the scheme that led to the launch of the existing BRIT School - or the London School For Performing Arts & Technology - in Croydon, said that establishing a state-funded secondary school "along the same lines" in Salford's Media City was a "very sensible" idea.

The new school would be independent from the London BRIT School, and would possibly differ in some ways - including the age range of its pupils - but there would be many similarities with the Croydon college. Although the plans are clearly at a very early stage, Baker - who now chairs the Baker Dearing Educational Trust and Edge Foundation - announced the new project at a day of events designed to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the existing BRIT School.

As previously reported, according to Music Week research musical graduates from the BRIT School have together sold over 65 million albums worldwide.

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USHER ACCUSED OF SONG THEFT
Usher has been accused of stealing his hit song 'Burn'. He and the song's co-writers, Jermaine Dupri and Bryan-Michael Cox, are being sued by songwriter Ernest Lee Straughter, who claims 'Burn' is way too similar to his song 'The Reasons Why', which was recorded by R&B group Reel Tight under the name 'No More Pain' in 1998.

This week a California federal judge accepted a musicologist's report that notes the similarities between the two tracks as evidence in the legal case. Meanwhile, Usher's lawyers have asked the judge to re-examine the lawsuit, presumably with a view to dismissing it, or so Billboard reports.

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PETS PREFER ADELE IN THE CAR
And the prize for nonsense survey of the week goes to this one by Confused.com and The Dogs Trust, which has worked out that the most popular radio station among cats and dogs - when travelling in a car (this survey was designed to flog Confused.com's car insurance services) - is Radio 1. Closely followed by Radio 2 and 5 Live.

In case you wondered what scientific processes were employed to ascertain this fact, well, the surveyors asked 2000 pet owners what radio stations and music seemed to make their cats and dogs the happiest. Artists-wise, Adele, Madonna and Lady Gaga came top, meaning animals prefer the ladies of pop over the boy bands and Biebers of the world. Which is probably sensible.

Confused.com's Gareth Kloet told reporters: "Road trips should be as fun for our pets as they can be for us, and keeping our pets happy in the back is also going to reduce distraction for us as drivers, making our journeys safer for us and our animals".

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DOMINGO SIGNS TO SONY
Despite his presumably arduous newish job as rent-a-quote for the International Federation Of The Phonographic Industry, Plácido Domingo still plans to make some records, and he's signed a new deal with Sony Classical to let that happen.

Domingo was once signed to Sony Music's predecessor CBS Records, but he hasn't had an exclusive relationship with any one record company for decades. Confirming his new deal he told reporters: "Sony and its predecessors have played such an important part in much of my career, yet I have not had an exclusive contract with any company in nearly 40 years. This steady relationship will enable Sony Classical and myself to create a variety of new, innovative, and fascinating musical projects".

Sony Music big cheese Doug Morris added: "The addition of one of the world's most beloved and successful vocalists to the Sony Classical roster underscores our continuing commitment to building our classical music business".

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FLAMING LIPS STREAM SIX HOUR SONG
The Flaming Lips have uploaded their six hour song (in six parts) to SoundCloud. As previously reported, earlier this month the band invited fans to pay $100 to have their names featured in the song, entitled 'I Found A Star On The Ground'. All proceeds are being donated to the OK Humane Society and the Academy Of Contemporary Music at the University Of Central Oklahoma.

The song will be released on an EP with two shorter songs, 'Evil Minds' and 'Butterfly, How Long Does It Take To Die' (which you can hear here: www.youtube.com/user/SlowNerveActionBored).

Listen to 'I Found A Star On The Ground' here:

soundcloud.com/slowonerveoaction-3/the-flaming-lips-i-found-a

soundcloud.com/slowonerveoaction-2/the-flaming-lips-i-found-a

soundcloud.com/slowonerveoaction/the-flaming-lips-i-found-a

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CINEMATIC ORCHESTRA RELEASE NEW SHORT FILM SCORES
The Cinematic Orchestra have released new scores for two silent short films from the 1920s, which are available to buy (complete with the visuals they accompany) from iTunes and the Ninja Tune website. The band are perhaps best known for their 2003 score for Dziga Vertov's 1929 silent feature 'Man With A Movie Camera'.

The first of the two films, 'Entr'acte' is a 20 minute short directed by René Clair in 1924 and was commissioned to play in the interval of Francis Picabia's ballet 'Relâche' in Paris that year. 'Manhatta', meanwhile, is a 1921 eleven minute documentary about New York made by painter Charles Sheeler and photographer Paul Strand. You can watch both films below.

The Cinematic Orchestra have also announced that the second instalment of their 'InMotion' night will take place at the Barbican in London on 1 Oct. The event sees The Cinematic Orchestra and other artists provide new scores to a selection of films. Also performing next month will be Dorian Concept and Tom Chant, Grey Reverend, plus Kutmah and Austin Peralta.

Entr'acte - www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytnHqiFQBFE
Manhatta - www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KoEAyMPbMA

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THE TWILIGHT SAD ANNOUNCE NEW ALBUM
The Twilight Sad will release their third album, entitled 'No One Can Ever Know', next February, it has been announced. Coming out on Fat Cat Records, the first single, 'Kill It In The Morning', will be released on 15 Nov.

And lo, you can listen to 'Kill It In The Morning' right here: soundcloud.com/fatcatrecords/the-twilight-sad-kill-it-in

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RECORD STORE FILM LOOKS FOR MORE FUNDERS
The makers of a documentary about the last surviving independent record shop in Teeside, Sound It Out Records, are looking to raise money via the IndieGoGo website to allow the UK distribution of the film, which received some good reviews when it was screened at SxSW earlier this year.

The filming of 'Sound It Out' was also funded via IndieGoGo, and now the producers are hoping to raise another £10,000 to enable additional master copies to be made and to apply for BBFC certification. The plan is to tour the film and some of the bands featured in it to various cities around the UK. Those who contribute will receive various bit of exclusive Sound It Out merchandise in return.

Director Jeanie Finlay, who grew up near the shop - the only vinyl seller left in the area after the demise of various local competitors - described the documentary as "a distinctive, funny and intimate film about men, the North and the irreplaceable role music plays in our lives".

To find out more or to contribute go to www.indiegogo.com/sounditoutdoc.

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M83 ANNOUNCES JANUARY TOUR
Following the announcement of a now sold out one-off London show at Heaven in December, M83 has unveiled a full UK tour for January, plus a show at London's Shepherds Bush Empire in February. Tickets will go on pre-sale at www.ilovem83.com on Monday. The new M83 album, 'Hurry Up, We're Dreaming', is due for release on 18 Oct via Mute.

Tour dates:

1 Dec: London, Heaven (sold out)
17 Jan: Bristol, Trinity
18 Jan: Manchester, Ritz
19 Jan: Glasgow, Arches
20 Jan: Leeds, Cockpit
21 Jan: Birmingham, Institute
22 Jan: Brighton, Concorde
16 Feb: London, Shepherds Bush Empire

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SURVEY TO ASSESS FESTIVAL SECTOR'S PR SKILLS
The editor of a website aimed at festival goers with children, FamilyFestivals.co.uk, is doing a survey on the PR and communication activities of music festivals in the UK. The survey is actually part of a project for a CIPR diploma that festival fan Sharon Brown is studying for.

Brown told CMU: "The survey is research for my CIPR Diploma in public relations. Music festivals are my passion and I naturally wanted to find out more about festival PR for my project".

You can take part in the survey here: www.surveymonkey.com/s/CGBDGDB

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BRING ME THE HORIZON LAUNCH BBQ SAUCE
So, Bring Me The Horizon have told fans they are launching their own brand of barbeque sauce to be called Bring Me The BBQ. It will soon be available via the band's website and all good stores, apparently.

Frontman Oli Sykes wrote on his blog: "Our BBQ sauce has finally arrived... It tastes like Jesus's cum. So fucking good. Will be available on our merch and all good food stores very soon".

Should you want some music to listen to while enjoying your Jesus's cum-like flavours, why not listen to this playlist Oli once compiled for us: www.thecmuwebsite.com/article/oli-sykes-from-bring-me-the-horizons-powers-of-ten-playlist/

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FINETUNES LAUNCHES ON-DEMAND CD PRODUCTION SERVICE
Digital distributor Finetunes has launched a new offer this week in the physical product space in the form of an on-demand CD production service, so that bands can offer CD products from their own websites or the likes of Amazon with minimum initial outlay - CDs and artwork are pressed on-demand when orders are placed. Labels can also use the service to press small numbers of CDs for sale at gigs, or to offer 'instant live' style recordings of live shows to audience members. The new service will offer fulfilment in various territories, including the UK, Germany and the US.

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KAZAA LAUNCH IPHONE APP
So, Kazaa. Remember that? What fun we had. Well, as you may or may not also remember, Kazaa eventually settled with the major record companies and, in America, relaunched as a subscription-based digital music service no one has heard of. And this week it launched an iPhone app, which basically works like the apps offered by Spotify, We7 et al, whereby you can stream unlimited music to your phone and download tracks within the app to allow offline listening.

Stuart Goldfarb of Atrinsic, the company which now operates the Kazaa subscription service, told reporters: "Our goal is to allow our subscribers to access whatever music they want, whenever and wherever they want it in the easiest way possible with the highest quality service. The launch of our app today makes it even simpler for our users with Apple devices to do this".

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VIMEO LAUNCHES MUSIC LIBRARY
YouTube competitor Vimeo has launched its own production music library to allow video makers to licence music to sync with their work in an easy and affordable way.

Although offering similar services to YouTube, Vimeo is more true to the concept of user-generated content, and is aimed much more at independent film-makers and other creatives looking for somewhere to showcase their work, rather than at punters wanting to stick clips of the TV shows they like onto the internet. To this end, unlike YouTube, Vimeo does not have licences from the big music companies and collecting societies, which means both it and its users can get in trouble when they post videos using other people's tunes.

The new service therefore offers music that film-makers can legitimately use, some available for free under a Creative Commons licence, others at $1.99 for non-commercial use and $98 for commercial players. The service brings together music from a number of existing production music catalogues.

Browse the library and watch an introductory video here: vimeo.com/musicstore

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SMALLER RADIO GROUPS RECONFIRM OPPOSITION TO DAB SHIFT
It's no secret that some of the smaller radio groups in the UK are against proposals backed by government, the BBC and the bigger radio firms to force the listening public onto the DAB digital network by pulling most stations off FM in a few years time. And now they've put that opposition into a formal response to media regulator OfCom, who have been consulting on the issue.

Radio groups UKRD, Tindle, Celador, Media Sound Holdings, Town & Country plus the owners of truly independent stations like The Revolution in Oldham and Juice in Brighton have put their names to the document, which says that their services should be able to opt out of the FM to DAB exodus because they believe the digital network is still unproven, that it remains unpopular with listeners, and that it will potentially be superseded by other technologies before it's even taken off.

Speaking for the group, the boss of UKRD, William Rogers, always vocal on this issue, told Radio Today: "What this consultation shows us is that DAB is a hopelessly inappropriate platform for the existing FM local services to migrate to and it's time that local commercial radio services were excluded from the present DAB planning process and allowed to continue broadcasting on FM. We don't need, want or support this change. Things are tough enough as it is without the government heaping more costs, uncertainty and damage on the local commercial radio sector. DAB for local commercial radio is inappropriate. It should be dumped".

Responding to the coalition of smaller stations, Ford Ennals of Digital Radio UK - the body set up to promote and oversee the move to digital - told Radio Today that the idea of keeping smaller and community stations on FM is already being considered, so the wishes expressed in this document do not necessarily conflict with his and the government's plans to make the national and bigger FMs exclusively digital services. New radio sets that can merge FM and DAB transmissions (and web radio) into one electronic programme guide would also make that scenario more viable.

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BEEF OF THE WEEK: BOW WOW V XXL
We can't all be on the cover of XXL; I've come to accept that now. Sadly, Bow Wow is still bitter that he's never appeared on the front of the US hip hop magazine. He's so annoyed, that he's started issuing threats. On 'You Drinking Too Much', a track on his 'Greenlight 4' mixtape, he raps: "If XXL don't give me the cover, I'm blowing up they offices".

Asked how serious the line was by Team XXL, the rapper went on and on and on about it. Here are some of the edited highlights:

"It was a line cos I always felt like I seen artists on the cover and I'm like: 'Yo, this guy never went gold before. How the fuck did he get a cover?' Just because this rapper might be street, that's a reason to put him on a cover? But, he sells no records! He has no fanbase ... I sold more records than some of these niggas that be on the cover. You know what I'm saying? And, not to even hate, but Soulja Boy got a cover before me".

Asked if he actually intended to detonate explosives in XXL's offices, he said: "I don't know. If I don't get this shit this time, off this album, I might. I just might. But, I will let y'all know off Twitter, like, 'Evacuate the building. I'm going to blow it up'".

Well, that's nice of him, at least. But seriously, he said, he's OK about it really. He knows his time will come. He concluded: "I'll get it one day. I ain't tripping. When they call, I'll be ready. My style is to be ready. I'll be ready".

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CMU Editor Andy Malt and CMU Business Editor Chris Cooke are both available to comment on music and music business stories. Together they have provided comment and contributions to BBC News, BBC World, BBC Radios 4, 5, 6music and Scotland, Sky News, CNN, Wired and the Associated Press. Email andy@unlimitedmedia.co.uk or chris@unlimitedmedia.co.uk.

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