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FRIDAY 21 OCTOBER 2011
TODAY'S FEATURE: MUSIC BUSINESS WEEK IN FIVE
So how did your day begin? Mine started great - perfect commute, extra chocolate on my coffee from that little stand at London Bridge, speedy bus ride up to Shoreditch High Street - where I found CMU HQ sans-electricity. And no, it wasn't a money-in-the-metre scenario, the whole building was in darkness. Isn't it weirdly quiet when all the servers switch off? more>>
VIGSY'S CLUB TIP: DJ FORMAT AND MR THING
The Westbury's line-up has been looking fresh and diverse over recent months - in fact it's been moving upwards since the venue's refurb a few years back - and tonight they have CMU faves Format (pictured) and Thing unleashing quality hip hop and phat beats to boot. Mr Thing is a former winner of the DMC Scratch Championship, so expect some proper trickery and showmanship on the more>>
TOP STORIES
- Self-administration theory is "crazy": Murray trial update
IN THE POP COURTS
- Another lawsuit for former Gaga collaborator
ARTIST DEALS
- Robbie signs to Universal
RELEASE NEWS
- Steve Aoki and Rivers Cuomo premiere video
- Gotye to release single and album
- Stealing Sheep stream EP
FILMS & SHOWS NEWS
Tori Amos musical postponed indefinitely
GIGS & TOURS NEWS
- Amon Tobin brings ISAM show back to the UK
- The Deer Tracks to play London shows
BRANDS & STUFF
- Jon Bon Jovi opens pay-what-you-want restaurant
- Former Radio 1 boss moves into advertising
THE MUSIC BUSINESS
- HMV launches consumer electronics push
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- MC Hammer launches search engine
THE MEDIA BUSINESS
- IPC appoints new publisher for NME and Uncut
- New publishing company for BBC magazines launched
AND FINALLY...
- Björk told Labrinth to fuck off
- Adam Levine bans Maroon 5 from Fox News
- Love-in Of The Week: Noel Gallagher & Damon Albarn
- Beef Of The Week: The Stone Roses v The Daily Mail
PROUD, VOLUNTARY PROMOTIONS INTERN
Leading music and entertainment company Proud Group is looking for an experienced and highly enthusiastic promotions volunteer to assist the Head of Live Bookings at Proud2 at The O2. Tasks include, but are not limited to: advancing shows, artist liaison, researching promoters, maintaining and updating databases, and planning and executing marketing campaigns. The right candidate will be self motivated and driven; possess an innate and broad knowledge of a wide range of music genre; have strong communication skills – both verbal and written; be creatively and commercially balanced; have experience of talent scouting, have a high attention to detail be highly organised. Previous experience in either live music, events, music marketing, promotions, artist management and A&R is strongly desirable.

Applicants should send a CV and covering letter to proud2jobs@proud.co.uk
   
NETTWERK MUSIC GROUP UK, PROMOTIONS MANAGER
Nettwerk Music Group in London is seeking an enthusiastic promotions manager to run the PR campaigns for Nettwerk's recording artist releases in the UK. Applicants must be creative, passionate about music, have at least one year's worth of experience in online and print PR with a strong media contact base. Salary negotiable, closing date 7 Nov. To apply email jobs@nettwerk.com.
   
NINJA TUNE, PROJECT MANAGER
Ninja Tune is seeking applicants for a senior position within the label, developing and executing comprehensive and exciting marketing strategies for our artists, labels and events. We are looking for a someone with initiative and self-motivation willing to take responsibility for planning and implementing great campaigns, including forthcoming campaigns for The Cinematic Orchestra and Coldcut. Applicants will need to demonstrate substantial experience and success in marketing within a record label or other relevant music company, both in the UK and internationally. The role will require extensive knowledge of music, especially current electronic music, and a strong creative eye.

Core responsibilities: Plan, write and execute marketing campaigns for all artist and label releases which are both sensitive to the needs and aesthetic of each artist and work to build profile and sales; Manage campaign activities including asset creation, radio & TV promotion, launch events, live/gig execution, video commissions, brand partnerships, advertising, blog communications and street team; Run campaign events including key gigs, album launch parties, listening parties, installations etc; Analyse and evaluate the commercial effectiveness of campaigns, their costs and results; Work with the Ninja Tune international team and our international partners to build campaigns that work internationally as well as domestically; Main contact point for artists, artist management and internal team on all campaign logistics

Applicants should send a CV and covering letter to job@ninjatune.net

SELF-ADMINISTRATION THEORY IS "CRAZY": MURRAY TRIAL UPDATE
So, in what is the grand finale of the prosecution's arguments in the Conrad Murray trial, a leading expert on the drug that killed Michael Jackson - Dr Steven Shafer - told the jury that the defence's long running argument that the late king of pop must have self-administered the fatal shot of the medication was simply "crazy".

Other medics previously called to testify by the prosecution - as well as criticising Murray for giving Jackson propofol, a surgical anaesthetic only usually used in hospitals, as a treatment for insomnia in a domestic setting - have also thrown doubt on the defence's big theory, that the defendant gave the singer a safe dosage of the drug, but then the patient self-administered another fatal shot. But Shafer was the most resolute on this matter: that scenario simply wasn't possible, he said.

At the start of the trial, the defence suggested that the singer may have, in act of desperation, swallowed a helping of propofol - a drug Jackson called "milk" and which he viewed primarily as a sleep aid - and that doing so resulted in his death. However, the defence team's own tests on the drug showed that, if consumed orally, while not particularly good for you, it wouldn't be fatal.

That meant they had to return to their original hypothesis, that Jackson self-injected the drug. But that theory is easier for the prosecution, and their expert witnesses, to question. Is it really possible that Jackson, coming out of a general anaesthetic, and therefore in a 'groggy' state, would be capable of sitting up and injecting himself with another shot of "milk"?

But Jackson was used to self-injecting medications, the defence argued. Plus, what if he'd used the syringe to pierce the IV bag that Murray had used to administer the original supposedly small dose of propofol, and which was still connected to the singer's body? What if Jackson had pumped more of the drug into that bag, and then squeezed it hard so that the propofol moved quickly into his system? Previous witness Dr Christopher Rogers, who said the self-administration theory was "unreasonable", did concede that scenario might be possible, even if very unlikely.

But Shafer was adamant that none of the defence's theories stacked up. The amount of propofol in Jackson's system after his death was simply too high, the doctor said, so even if the singer had, somehow, shortly after coming out of a deep anaesthetic-induced sleep, administered another shot - or two shots, or even several shots - it would not have caused his death.

The only explanation, Shafer concluded, is that Murray had put a sufficient supply of the drug into the IV system for it to be constantly feeding the singer's body, and then left his patient unattended, with no medical kit monitoring his heart and breathing.

It was a pretty damning testimony for the defence, who now face the prospect of convincing a jury who have heard about a string of failings committed by Murray in the run up to Jackson's death, and multiple other doctors describing his actions as unprecedented and hugely reckless, that the evidence against their client isn't strong enough to convict him of involuntary manslaughter.

The case continues.

Meanwhile, elsewhere in Jackson-related legal nonsense, insurance firm Lloyds Of London, who insured some of Jackson's ill-fated 'This Is It' residency at The O2 in London, made another submission to the LA court this week as part of their bid to get access to Jackson's medical records. As previously reported, Lloyds has refused to pay out on AEG Live's insurance policy relating to the doomed live show, claiming the promoter misrepresented facts about the singer's health, and prescription drug use, when taking out its policy. The insurer wants access to records kept by various doctors about Jackson's health and drug use to back up its claim.

The Michael Jackson estate, although not actively linked to AEG's insurance claim, has control over the late king of pop's medical information, and is trying to block the insurers bid for access to it, arguing that if private records are handed over it will breach the physician-patient privilege. In the firm's latest submission, Lloyds argues that, before he died, Jackson had given permission for medical records to be shared with the insurers, so the physician-patient privilege isn't relevant. The insurer also argues that so much about Jackson's health and medication use has come out in the Conrad Murray trial, much of this information is no longer confidential anyway.

A judge is due to decide whether Jackson's former doctors will be forced to hand over his patient records at the end of next week.

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ANOTHER LAWSUIT FOR FORMER GAGA COLLABORATOR
Another former collaborator has come out of the woodwork making claims against Rob Fusari, the producer who himself collaborated with Lady Gaga at the start of her career. Fusari, also an ex-boyfriend of the Gaga, sued the popstress once she became a global superstar claiming he'd been deprived of his cut of the profits that had been promised at the outset. The two former partners and collaborators reached an out of court settlement.

Since then another producer, Calvin Gaines, sued Fusari, claiming that he had not been paid for work he had done on Gaga's early work, his agreement being with Fusari and not the singer directly. And now an LA-based pop duo called Purple Crush are also suing the former Gaga ally, claiming they too worked for the producer on various projects, including - it seems - some work for pop's Lady, but, they claim, they have never been paid. According to LA Weekly, the duo also allege Fusari promised to get them a record deal as artists themselves, but that never happened.

The LA paper says that Purple Crush proposed a settlement to the tune of ten grand earlier this year, but Fusari refused and instead sued the songwriting duo. They have responded with their own lawsuit, though things are complicated because they are struggling to pay a lawyer to represent them. Fusari has not yet commented on this particular action.

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ROBBIE SIGNS TO UNIVERSAL
So, Robbie Williams will release his next album with Universal Music, he being without a record label partner since his famous EMI deal came to an end with his last record.

And look, here's people saying things...

Universal CEO Lucian Grainge: "What a thrill this announcement is. To be working with Robbie and his team, and to have the opportunity to support this incredible stage of his career, makes life so exciting".

Universal UK CEO David Joseph: "Having had the chance to listen to the music I've no doubt that Robbie is currently at his most creatively inspired. We are about to witness something very special".

Robbie's manager Tim Clark: "This great new deal puts Robbie Williams firmly in control of his own destiny, but with the most muscular of partners".

And Robbie himself: "I'm really thrilled to be joining the Universal family at what I think is the most exciting time in my career".

The Universal empire, of course, are Take That's current label. You all know that already, but I just feel like that's the sort of thing that should be included in a story like this.

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STEVE AOKI AND RIVERS CUOMO PREMIERE VIDEO
Rivers Cuomo is not the obvious choice to front a mainstream dance single, let alone feature in the actual video for it. But the fact that he has makes me love him a little bit more, and almost forgive him for insisting on recording ever more disappointing Weezer albums.

This week Steve Aoki premiered the video for the pair's new collaboration, 'Earthquakey People', the lead single from the electro musician's forthcoming debut album 'Wonderland'. Does Cuomo feature prominently in the video? Yes. Does he attempt to fit in with its flashy visuals? No. Never has a man looked more like Rivers Cuomo.

Watch 'Earthquakey People' here.

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GOTYE TO RELEASE SINGLE AND ALBUM
Cult Australian singer-songwriter Gotye has named 'Easy Way Out' as the lead single from his much-anticipated forthcoming LP, 'Making Mirrors', which is slated for release via Universal/Island's Communion imprint on 13 Feb.

A robust, Beck-esque blast of staccato garage-rock, the track is worlds away from the wistful acoustica of Gotye's breakthrough, 'Somebody I Used To Know'. Gotye will follow the release of 'Easy Way Out', due out on 28 Oct, with a couple of sold-out London dates.

While you ponder the above, why not watch the song's accompanying video?

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STEALING SHEEP STREAM EP
Folk sorts Stealing Sheep are poised to precede the release of their debut album, expected out via Heavenly Recordings next spring, with a new EP. Entitled 'Noah & The Paper Moon', you can stream and download several tracks from it here.

The band are seemingly in all the right indie places just now, sharing bills with the likes of Fixers, Summer Camp and Lulu And The Lampshades next month. And, following a sure-to-be-spooky slot at the Cecil Sharp House-based Halloween Music Fair in London, they'll also appear at this year's Liverpool Music Week and Constellations Festival on 11 and 12 Nov respectively.

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TORI AMOS MUSICAL POSTPONED INDEFINITELY
The premiere of Tori Amos' musical, 'The Light Princess', has been postponed indefinitely, according to The Guardian. The show was due to open in April next year at the National Theatre in London, but has been pulled from the schedule amid fears it will not be ready in time.

As previously reported, the show was announced in January of this year, and is an adaptation of George MacDonald's 1864 fairy tale 'The Light Princess', the story of a princess who floats into the air unless she is swimming.

A spokesperson for the National Theatre told The Guardian: "Development is continuing on 'The Light Princess' and we'll announce a new date for the production in due course".

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AMON TOBIN BRINGS ISAM SHOW BACK TO THE UK
Currently on a sold-out run over in the US, electronic maestro Amon Tobin is to bring his acclaimed audiovisual show, 'ISAM Live' - named after his current album - back to the UK next month, with two shows at London's HMV Forum on 23 and 24 Nov.

Comprising a form-shifting central structure, kaleidoscopic 3D projections and abstract storyboards, the spectacle represents what Amon terms a "visual score", synchronised to music from the LP.

By way of a preview, here's some footage of the premiere of the show in Montreal back in June.

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THE DEER TRACKS TO PLAY LONDON SHOWS
The objects of long-held CMU affection, Swedish partnership The Deer Tracks are set to herald the release of their new single, 'Fra Ro Raa/Ro Ra Fraa', with three London dates.

You can watch the video for that very song, which marks the latest release from the duo's second album, 'The Archer Trilogy Part Two', here.

25 Oct: London, Servants Jazz Quarters
27 Oct: London, Hoxton Bar & Kitchen
3 Nov: London, The Nest

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JON BON JOVI OPENS PAY-WHAT-YOU-WANT RESTAURANT
Jon Bon Jovi has applied the pay-what-you-want model to a new restaurant, which is novel. The eatery in New Jersey, named Soul Kitchen, is part of the singer's Soul Foundation charity. The idea is that those who can afford it pay what they think is fair for the food on offer - there's a suggested donation of $20 for a three course meal - while those who can't can lend a hand in other ways, such as by cleaning.

And that's the roll Bon Jovi himself has taken on, as he revealed he's no good in the kitchen. He told The Associated Press: "Last Friday, I was at the White House, serving on the Council For Community Solutions, got on a train, changed in the bathroom and got here in time to wash dishes Friday night. I'm the dishwasher, for real. I can't cook a lick".

In a statement, he added: "At a time when one in five households are living at or below the poverty level, and at a time when one out of six Americans are food insecure, this is a restaurant whose time has come. This is a place based on and built on community - by and for the community".

The restaurant sources all of its ingredients from its own garden and local suppliers.

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FORMER RADIO 1 BOSS MOVES INTO ADVERTISING
Former Radio 1 boss Andy Parfitt has just cropped up in a new job in advertising. He is joining ad agency Saatchi & Saatchi as Executive Director Of Talent.

I've no idea what an Executive Director Of Talent in a marketing services company does, but this is what Parfitt said of his new job: "Saatchi & Saatchi is the most famous creative agency in the world, making some great work with a range of interesting clients. There is a talented and collaborative senior team in place and I'm really looking forward to the start of this new chapter".

Parfitt announced his departure from the BBC back in July, him having headed up the Beeb's pop station and other yoof ventures for twelve years, and having worked for the Corporation in general for three decades. At the time Parfitt said it was time to "pursue new opportunities", though the fact the BBC was looking to trim back the very management-heavy hierarchy of its national radio stations may have also had a role in his decision making.

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HMV LAUNCHES CONSUMER ELECTRONICS PUSH
HMV boss Simon Fox has been talking a lot in the last year about how the future of his entertainment retail business lies in gadgets, and that strategy is about to become much more obvious today as the company launches a big marketing push around its consumer technology stock.

A Justice-soundtracked new ad campaign focuses in particular on the headphones, speakers and tablet devices now being stocked across HMV's network of 250 stores, many of which have been rejigged to stock more techie products. The campaign apparently encourages shoppers to "touch it, watch it, hear it, feel it, play it, wear it, live it, think of slightly snappier slogan".

The new ad campaign kicks off a critical three months for HMV, which needs a better Christmas period to satisfy bankers Fox's strategy for turning round the fortunes of the flagging entertainment retailer can work.

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MC HAMMER LAUNCHES SEARCH ENGINE
With Google so dominant, the search engine market is a difficult one to break into. You'd have to be pretty confident in a new product to enter it cold, without the might of a large tech firm behind you. But that's what MC Hammer is doing. Obviously.

Speaking at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco, Hammer announced a new "deep search" engine called WireDoo. It differs from other search engines, the rapper explained, because it looks for information related to what you search for, rather than just matching relevant keywords, hence the tagline "Search once, and see what's related".

Confused? Well, Hammer explains further here.

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IPC APPOINTS NEW PUBLISHER FOR NME AND UNCUT
IPC Media has announced the appointment of a new Publishing Director for its music titles, NME and Uncut. Emily Hutchings, who previously oversaw the publisher's Now and Soaplife magazines, and before that had stints with both NME and Uncut, takes over from Paul Cheal, the IPC music titles' long time commercial overseer, who has himself moved within the company to become Digital Publishing Director.

She reports to IPC Inspire MD Paul Williams, who told CMU: "I'm delighted to welcome someone of Emily's talent and experience to Inspire at what is an exciting time for our music brands. With its multi-platform proposition, NME is at the forefront of many of IPC's print and digital innovations, while imminent developments are also in the pipeline for both Uncut and Uncut.co.uk. With her impressive track record in the competitive woman's weekly sector allied to the in-depth knowledge she already has of both music brands, I can't think of a better person to drive their development".

Emily herself added: "Both NME and Uncut are very close to my heart and I'm looking forward to the opportunity to work with both teams again. Paul has done a fantastic job in pushing the brands forward and I can't wait to take up the challenge of furthering this momentum and success".

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NEW PUBLISHING COMPANY FOR BBC MAGAZINES LAUNCHED
Exponent, the private equity group which acquired the BBC's magazine business back in August, has launched a new company to publish the 33 titles it got as part of the deal, which include both Top Of The Pops Magazine and the BBC Music Magazine.

The new company, to be called Immediate Media Co, has appointed Stephen Alexander as its Chairman, who back in the day held the same role with EMI. Tom Bureau, the CEO of another Exponent-owned publishing company, will take the same role at the new firm.

The BBC's commercial division, BBC Worldwide, was forced to sell its magazine business as a result of government pressure to streamline or offload those operations not directly linked to driving extra revenues for the Beeb's broadcasting assets.

Many of those magazines directly linked to a BBC TV franchise will still be ultimately owned by BBC Worldwide, but will be contract published by Immediate. Other titles were sold outright to the new company as part of Exponent's acquisition.

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BJÖRK TOLD LABRINTH TO FUCK OFF
Hey, this could almost be the rebirth of our 'Ringo Says Fuck Off' column. Remember that? Ah, happy days. Or not for Labrinth, as he's revealed that when he approached Björk to work on a track for her 'Biophilia' album, she rejected him in no uncertain terms. It is possible he's paraphrasing a little though.

Anyway, he told the NME: "I approached Björk to be on the album. She was like, 'Fuck off man', but that's how it goes. I'm sure if I was very, very famous she would consider it. It would have been nice, but I think she has a lot of things to do".

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ADAM LEVINE BANS MAROON 5 FROM FOX NEWS
Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine isn't happy that some of his band's music recently appeared in some of Fox News' output. He tweeted on Wednesday: "Dear Fox News, don't play our music on your evil fucking channel ever again. Thank you".

In response, hosts of the station's 'Red Eye' show, Greg Gutfeld and Andy Levy tweeted back.

Gutfeld went with: "Dear Adam, that's not music".

While's Levy quipped: "Dear Adam Levine, don't make crappy fucking music ever again. Thank you".

Both comebacks are pretty weak. Levy really lets himself down after his previous response to another outburst on Twitter.

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LOVE-IN OF THE WEEK: NOEL GALLAGHER & DAMON ALBARN
See, we're not all about the beefs. Noel Gallagher has been all nice about former rival Damon Albarn in an interview with Shortlist. Gallagher and Albarn, of course, participated in a very public war of words - spurred on by the tabloids and music press - back in the heyday of Britpop, and hadn't spoken for fifteen years as a result. But then, it seems, they randomly met in a nightclub and buried any hatchets that were still unburied.

Says Gallagher: "Funnily enough, when I was out last night, I bumped into him [Albarn]. I literally haven't seen the guy for fifteen fucking years and I bump into him in some club. We both went, 'Hey! Fucking hell!' and then he said, 'Come on, let's go for a beer'. So, we're sitting there, having a beer, just going, 'What the fuck was all that about fifteen years ago? That was mental'. Then he said, 'It was a great time, though', and I was like, 'Yeah, it was a fucking good laugh'. It was cool, man".

Despite having a reputation for dissing various other artists over the years, Gallagher insists he's complimentary about many more people, it's just that the meee-dja are only interested when he's being critical. Referring to his outspoken remarks about the decision to let Jay-Z headline Glastonbury in 2008, Gallagher added: "Look, like I said to [Damon] last night, you can say that you respect someone as an artist a thousand times and it will never get reported. But you call someone a cunt once... you know? And it still rings true today. I lose count of the number of times I've had to say about Jay-Z, 'Look, hang on a minute here...' and it never gets fucking printed. But I don't mind. I can live with that".

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BEEF OF THE WEEK: THE STONE ROSES V THE DAILY MAIL
The Stone Roses announced they are back together this week. You might have noticed. They held a big press conference at the Soho Hotel in London, where the media flocked to hear how the band were planning to justify reforming when they said they never would - John Squire going to far as to once claim (via the medium of art) that such a thing would be a desecration of the memory of the band. To be fair to the former and now current bandmates, they actually did a pretty good job of it.

Together the four of them were open, honest, and jovial. Funny even. Towards the end of the Q&A session, Ian Brown showed a barbed sense of humour in an exchange with Daily Mail reporter Ben Todd. It went something like this:

BT: Hiya. Um, quick one. When you were writing the songs...
IB: Quick one for you, what does it feel like to represent the newspaper that used to support Adolf Hitler?
[Audience laughs and applauds]
BT: Um...
IB: That supports the banker cabbalists that are ruining the world...?
BT: I'm not gonna go into that...
IB: No, but I am.
[Audience laughs]
BT: We'll have a chat about it another time.
IB: Did you vote Tory?
BT: No.
IB: No one ever votes Tory, do they?

Todd did eventually get to ask his questions, and have them answered, but the preamble was, frankly, much more interesting. Watch it unravel here.

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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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