28 MAY 2013

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David Lowery has been recording and performing for three decades, initially with his band Camper Van Beethoven, and since 1990 with his second project Cracker as well. But more recently he has been in the news as much for his opinions on the various shifts that have occurred in the music industry, and on the impact of the web on the artist community, with those views being shared via the blog The Trichordist - and tonight at the latest MusicTank Think Tank, focused on what can be done about ad-funded piracy more>>
In recent years, producer Jon Hopkins has worked with Brian Eno, Coldplay and King Creosote - earning a Mercury nomination for his album with the latter, 'Diamond Mine'. He also released a collection of solo work in the form of a soundtrack to 'Monsters' in 2010. However, next week he is due to release his fourth solo album proper, 'Immunity'. The first half of the album made up of techno which uses chord sequences designed to tug on the emotions, as the beats pull you to the dancefloor, before dropping into more ambient material more>>

- "He passed with flying colours": Jacksons v AEG update
- Former BPI and EMI communicator dies
- Pussy Riot member denied parole
- Stone Temple Pilots go legal in dispute with Weiland
- Former Go-Gos bassist sues ex-bandmates
- Daft Punk re-sign with Imagem
- Carcass sign to Nuclear Blast
- BMG signs The Strypes
- Compilation released in aid of CALM
- Ane Brun to release retrospective
- Mykki Blanco announces London show
- Festival line-up update: 2000trees, Chagstock, Kendal Calling
- Loeb's proposal for Sony has opponents
- Channel 4 to pilot two new music programmes
- Italian football fans boo Psy
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The Promotions Manager role sits within the marketing team at Defected, the world’s leading House music label. Responsible for managing Defected and partner labels’ international club and radio promotions, you will come from an experienced, music promotions background and have an extensive network of contacts.

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We are looking for an intern with a keen interest in digital marketing to join our UK team. Experience in digital marketing would be a plus; being interested in music and wanting to learn more about the industry is a necessity.

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Cherry Red Records are looking for an assistant to our digital manager in the creation of a marketing/project management department within the company. The successful candidate will work closely on our new frontline releases, but also assist in the general running of the digital department across our entire catalogue and various media platforms.

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London office for well-established rock/metal label is looking for a dynamic and experienced Promotions Manager to handle TV and Radio promotion for its rapidly diversifying roster. The ideal candidate should have at least two years experience in a similar role with existing contacts within the rock/metal media. Working in a fast-paced environment, organisation, communication and motivation are all key, as is a strong passion for rock/metal music.

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CODA requires a full time receptionist for immediate start within our busy and successful artist music agency based near Farringdon, London. We're looking for someone with excellent communication skills, friendly and motivated who is able to multi-task. We need a "can do" attitude. This is an excellent first step in to the live music industry.

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Partisan Records, part of Knitting Factory Group, is looking for a dynamic and forward thinking Product Manager to join the recently established UK office. The successful candidate will have at least two years product management experience and will be experienced in implementing multiple artist campaigns across traditional and digital marketing platforms.

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We organise indoor and outdoor music & arts events and have two desks available for rent in our friendly and comfortable office. It's a great creative space located in Hoxton for anyone working in the creative industries (ie graphic designers, journalists, digital, marketing). Just five mins from Hoxton Station. The building is very secure and has 24 hour access. Rent is £250 a month plus VAT per desk which is inclusive of all bills and wi-fi.

For more information please contact info@festivalproduction.net

AEG Live General Counsel Shawn Trell completed his long testimony late last week in the ongoing Jacksons v AEG Live court battle. The Jackson family want AEG to be held liable for the death of Michael Jackson in 2009.

With the Jacksons trying hard to portray AEG management as ruthless and uncaring, and of ignoring Michael's obvious health issues in Spring 2009 in order to stick to the schedule they'd made for the ill-fated 'This Is It' venture, attention late last week turned to the live music giant's attempts to get insurance for that project.

Insurers had raised various concerns about Jackson's health when first approached about providing no-show insurance for 'This Is It', and Trell had been involved in those discussions. The implication from the Jackson side, of course, was, if insurers were raising these concerns, why weren't AEG likewise checking up on the singer's health?

One email from a British insurance broker was revealed in court, in which the broker wrote: "The insurers have specifically requested information on the following: press reports [that] the artist is at various times using a wheelchair, suffering a back injury, lupus, cancer, cosmetic procedures, lung infection, emphysema, chronic gastrointestinal bleeding".

That email had been sent just hours before Jackson died at his rented home in LA in 2009, bringing the whole 'This Is It' project to a halt. At that point AEG had only secured insurance for some of the singer's O2 London residency, and was trying to convince insurers to provide a policy covering the rest.

But, Trell pointed out, that email didn't mention Jackson's dependency on certain prescription drugs, nor his issues with insomnia, the two things that combined to cause the late king of pop's premature death in 2009, after Dr Conrad Murray negligently administered the anaesthetic propofol to help the singer sleep.

And when the company that had provided the initial round of insurance for 'This Is It', Lloyds Of London, had sent in its approved doctor to give Jackson a health check in February 2009, he'd not raised any particular concerns. Trell said that while the Lloyds appointed doctor hadn't shared specifics about the singer's health, because of patient confidentiality, he had told him: "Other than a slight case of hayfever, he passed with flying colours".

Lloyds' insurance of the 'This Is It' venture was subsequently subject to its own litigation, of course, though that was resolved last September.

Trell was finally allowed to stand down from the witness stand before proceedings in the Jacksons v AEG case rested for the weekend, though the live firm will remain under the spotlight when the hearing resumes later today, with AEG exec and long-term Jackson collaborator Paul Gongaware due to testify this week.

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Terri Anderson, a former corporate communications exec in the UK record industry who held senior comms roles at both EMI and trade body the BPI, died on Friday after losing her battle with cancer.

Paying tribute, Tony Wadsworth, Chairman of the BPI and former boss of EMI UK, told reporters: "Terri's professional style was low key and understated but her contribution to the industry was at a high level, confident and long term. She tackled the thorniest of issues with good humour and the deft skill of one who knows what they're talking about. She had a ready smile and was a lovely human being".

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Pussy Riot's Maria Alyokhina was denied parole last week, a month after bandmate Nadezhda Tolokonnikova was also refused the same. A Russian court said that Alyokhina, who has been on hunger strike, should not be released as she has disobeyed prison authorities and failed to repent for her crime.

As previously reported, three members of the political band were sentenced to two years in jail last August, after being found guilty of 'hooliganism motivated by religious hatred' for performing a protest song in a Moscow cathedral earlier in year. One of the three, Yekaterina Samutsevich, was given a suspended sentence on appeal, but Alyokhina and Tolokonnikova were sent to tough prison camps.

Prior to last week's court hearing, Paul McCartney called on Russian officials to release the two women, saying in a letter: "My personal belief is that further incarceration for Maria will be harmful for her and the situation as a whole, which, of course, is being watched by people all over the world. In the great tradition of fair-mindedness which the Russian people (many of whom are my friends) are famous for, I believe that you granting this request would send a very positive message to all the people who have followed this case".

The two performers also received support from Peter Gabriel as they fought for parole, though neither musician's pleas seemingly had any effect.

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Stone Temple Pilots have reportedly gone legal in their dispute with former frontman Scott Weiland, filing a lawsuit that apparently attempts to stop the singer from using the band's name or even performing their songs, which - if true - seems a bit extreme, since he co-wrote most of them.

As previously reported, Weiland was formally fired from Stone Temple Pilots by his bandmates in February, he seemingly finding out via press reports about his bandmates' Facebook statement. The new lawsuit claims that the Weiland-fronted version of the band, which regrouped in 2008, imploded because he became impossible to work with, was frequently late for shows in 2012, often performed poorly due to drug consumption, and eventually would only communicate with his bandmates via his lawyers or manager.

The dispute has seemingly gone legal now because the band have released a new track with Linkin Park's Chester Bennington on vocals. In a post on his website last week, Weiland said he hadn't known that Bennington would be performing with his former band, adding: "To tell you the truth, it took me by surprise. And it hurt. But the band that played last weekend was not Stone Temple Pilots and it was wrong of them to present themselves as that".

Insisting again that his bandmates didn't have the power to 'fire' him back in February, Weiland's statement continued: "First of all they don't have the legal right to call themselves STP because I'm still a member of the band. And more importantly, they don't have the ethical right to call themselves Stone Temple Pilots because it's misleading and dishonest to the millions of fans that have followed us for so many years".

He went on: "When I tour on my own, it's never as Stone Temple Pilots. It's as Scott Weiland. The fans deserve to know what they're getting. Like any band that's stood the test of time and made music for more than two decades, STP had a special alchemy - the four of us together were greater than any one of us apart. So if my former bandmates want to tour with a new singer, that's their prerogative. I don't give a fuck what they call themselves, but it's not Stone Temple Pilots. And so I say to you, our fans, I'll see you out there on the road this summer where I'm touring as 'Scott Weiland' with my band The Wildabouts".

But in their lawsuit, Weiland's ex-bandmates say that it is the former frontman who is mis-using the STP trademark, though their grievances seem to be more about claims being made by his lawyers than any use of the band's name by Weiland himself. In particular, they allege that Weiland's lawyers tried to pressure an LA-based radio station to not play the Bennington-featuring STP track 'Out Of Time' on the basis doing so would breach their client's rights.

The lawsuit concludes: "The band endured much strife and lost significant opportunities because of Weiland. Enough is enough. Without relief from the court, Weiland will continue violating STP's rights, misappropriating STP assets and interfering with the band's livelihood".

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More former bandmate squabbles, and former Go-Go's bassist Kathy Valentine is suing her ex-bandmates, alleging that they are attempting to screw her out of her share of the money generated by the band's brand and trademark.

The new wave group, initially active from 1978 to 1985, but who have toured regularly since 1999, announced they were parting ways with Valentine in March, and that she would therefore not appear on their 2013 tour.

In her litigation, Valentine says that all of the group's business affairs have traditionally been managed via two business entities - Ladyhead LLC and Smith-Pocket Industries, Inc - in which all five members have an equal stake.

But recently, says the lawsuit, the rest of the Go-Gos - so Belinda Carlisle, Jane Wiedlin, Charlotte Caffey and Gina Schock - have set up a third entity, in which Valentine has no stake. Controlling 80% of Ladyhead LLC, the other four members have then licensed the rights to exploit the Go-Gos brand to the new company, GoGoGo Corp.

The move means that Valentine will only earn from the licence fee the new company pays the old one, while the rest of the group will also profit as shareholders in GoGoGo Corp.

It's not clear if this restructuring of the group's companies caused or is the result of Valentine's departure from the outfit, though it's clear there have been tensions between the bassist and her bandmates for a while.

Valentine's lawsuit reckons that the restructuring of the Go-Go's companies could cost her in excess of a million, and she wants the courts to undo the changes to protect her interests.

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Daft Punk will continue to be published by Imagem, so that's nice for everyone. The duo originally signed to the Zomba publishing company back in 1996, it then being acquired by a fledgling Imagem in 2008.

Confirming the latest deal, Imagem UK MD Kim Frankiewicz told CMU: "Daft Punk are a creative force in so many aspects; musically, visually and emotionally. They have been the soundtrack to so many people's lives; they created a genre and continue to be at the top of the game. [New album] 'Random Access Memories' is a seminal body of work".

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Veteran extreme metallers Carcass have signed to Nuclear Blast Records, the label announced last week. The band are due to release a new album, 'Surgical Steel', in the autumn, their first for quite some time.

Announcing the deal, the band growled in unison: "We are pleased to announce that we have found the perfect home for 'Surgical Steel', the first Carcass album for, what, seventeen years?! We've inked a deal with Nuclear Blast for our new baby. We have to thank [Nuclear Blast founder] Markus Staiger for his enthusiasm and belief in what he heard, but mostly his ability to take advantage of Jeff [Walker, vocalist] with a bad hangover when he visited the office in Donzdorf to let him be the first to hear the rough mixes".

They continued: "Nuclear Blast has managed to secure this release despite interest from all the main players in what remains of the metal 'music industry.' We're also looking forward to working with our pals in the US office, who have done favours for us behind the scenes over the last few years".

Staiger added: "It feels like a dream come true. When Jeff Walker let me listen to the new record, I knew immediately that Carcass had made one of their best albums ever! It is a perfect mixture of 'Heartwork' and 'Necroticism' with a massive production to boot. The album is without a doubt just as perfect and lethal as surgical steel itself, and exactly what both old and new fans have waited for eagerly all of these years! I am very proud to say, Carcass - welcome to the Nuclear family. It is an honour to work with this legendary metal band".

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BMG Ireland last week announced that it had signed the rather buzzy The Strypes to a new publishing deal, which means the music rights company will represent the Irish four-piece's song rights as they release their debut album later this year via Universal Music.

The band are also playing quite a few gigs over the next two months either side of an appearance at Glastonbury, with the following UK headline shows...

20 Jun: Bristol Fleece
21 Jun: Islington Academy, Islington (including under 18s matinee)
27 Jun: Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton
10 Jul: Stoke Sugarmill
11 Jul: 53 Degrees, Preston
25 Jul: Oxford Academy

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Manchester-based Quenched Music last week released a seventeen-track album in aid of CALM, the charity that works to prevent suicide amongst young men, it being the single biggest killer of men under 35 in the UK. The Strokes, Reverend And The Markers and Get Cape Wear Cape Fly are amongst those to have contributed tracks to the initiative.

The record is called 'Xpress: The Album', and you'll find more info and can buy it from the official website xpressofficial.com. Here's the tracklist...

The Strokes - Trying Your Luck
Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly. - Snap
Black Lights - For You
Tuka feat Maples - You And I
Jun Tzu - The Bridge
The Hyena Kill - Little Jesus Bastard
Byron - Demons
Reverend And The Makers - Noisy Neighbour
King Porter Stomp - The Shuffle
Frazer King - The Witch And Mr Woo
The Cold One Hundred - Special Friends
The Rimes - Fight Fire With Fire
The Libertines - Can't Stand Me Now
Stalagmites - Be An Animal
The Minx - Cold Outside
Naymedici - Paddy McGee
Kid British - You Against The World

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Norwegian singer-songwriter Ane Brun has announced that she will release a retrospective compilation of music to mark the tenth anniversary of the release of her debut album, 'Spending Time With Morgan'. Entitled 'Songs 2003-2013', the record will be released through Balloon Ranger on 10 Jun, and will feature a selection of her best songs, plus live recordings, covers and other rarities.

Discussing her career to date, Brun said: "I kind of told myself early on to continue doing this as long as it gave me pleasure and it still does, more than ever. I'm still fingerpicking in front of my favourite TV series or with my morning coffee, just like I did ten to fifteen years ago. And it still fascinates me, just like it did when I wrote one of my very first songs, 'Wooden Body', sometime around the year 2000".

She'll also be touring later this year, on these dates:

14 Nov: London, The Forum
15 Nov: Manchester, Ruby Lounge
16 Nov: Dublin, Vicar St
18 Nov: Glasgow, Oran Mor

Now, speaking of covers, as we were, here's her version of 'Feeling Good'.

And here's the full tracklist for the compilation:

Humming One Of Your Songs
Are They Saying Goodbye?
My Lover Will Go
To Let Myself Go
Temporary Dive
Song No 6 (feat Ron Sexsmith)
Rubber & Soul (feat Teitur)
The Dancer (Live) (PJ Harvey cover)
The Puzzle
The Treehouse Song
Changing Of The Seasons
Don't Leave
True Colors (Cyndi Lauper cover)
Big In Japan (Alphaville cover)

Ten Seconds - Sketches Version
Lullaby for Grown-Ups - Sketches Version
My Star (Live)
Lift Me (Live feat Sivert Höyem) (Madrugada cover)
The Fall (Live)
Don't Give Up (Peter Gabriel & The New Blood Orchestra feat Ane Brun)
Do You Remember
These Days
Worship (feat Jose Gonzalez)
Oh Love
Du Gråter Så Store Tåra (Norwegian Version)
Alfonsina Y El Mar (Ariel Ramírez cover)
Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels) (Arcade Fire cover)
This Voice (2013)
Feeling Good (Nina Simone cover)

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Much talked about rapper Mykki Blanco will headline Village Underground in London on 10 Jun, before returning a month later for an appearance at Lovebox in July.

Blanco's debut EP, 'Better Rubble: The Initiation', is out now, and available to stream in full via Pitchfork's streaming thing.

Have yourself a watch of the video for 'Feeling Special' now.

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Having seemingly not learned their lesson after running a sixteen hour showcase at this year's Great Escape, the folks from Alcopop! Records have been announced as the latest label to take over the GreenHouse stage for a day at the 2000trees festival in July. Alcopop! will test the ground on the Friday, before Xtra Mile comes in on the Saturday.

Alcopop! boss Jack Clothier told CMU: "We're massive fans of everything about 2000trees, and it's lovely that they've invited us to get involved with this takeover. Our artists can bring a really beautiful dimension to their sets on occasions like this, and it's a good place for our friends to come when they have crushing festival hangovers".

2000trees organiser Andy Rea added: "We've brought together the amazing artists from these two great labels to offer something unique to our fans, who have always loved the GreenHouse stage as a place to enjoy acoustic sets in the sunshine - and as Jack says it's a great way to get over a hangover! We're thrilled to be spending a fun-filled weekend with everyone and can't wait for these one-off treats for fans of new and underground British music".

2000TREES, Upcote Farm, Withington, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, 11-13 Jul: Johnny Foreigner, Stagecoach, My First Tooth, Gunning For Tamar, The Attika State, Jurassic Pop, Side-step DJs, Fitz, El Morgan, Kitten & Bear, Chalk. www.twothousandtreesfestival.co.uk

CHAGSTOCK, Dartmoor, Devon, 19-20 Jul: Mystery Jets, Billy Bragg, Dizraeli And The Small Gods, Kathryn Roberts & Sean Lakeman, Crowns, Lily & Meg, Emily Barker & The Red Clay Halo, Willie And The Bandits, Crazy Arm, Matthew & Me, Marc O'Reilly, Ferocious Dog, New Crisis, Skinny Dog, Flats & Sharps, Brother & Bones, Aurora Skies. www.chagstock.info

KENDAL CALLING, Lowther Deer Park, Hackthorpe, East Cumbria, 26-28 Jul: Lucy Rose, DJ Yoda, The Twang, Elite Force, Maribou State, 808 State, Richard Norris, Ashley Beedle, North Base, Maths Time Joy, Misty Miller, Champs, Fossil Collective, Rubylux, Sykur, Monster Monster, Wolfie Razmatazz, Heymoonshaker, Birth Of Joy, By The Rivers, More Like Trees, Polaroid 85, Resonators, Tako Lako, Will And The People, Willie & The Bandits, Cherub, Bandeoke, Andy Hunt presents The Breakfast Club, BMX Bandits, Dunwells, The Last Party, Juveniles, Planes, Room Full of Mirrors, Seamus Mcloughlin, Camp Stag, The Righteous Bees, Tomorrow We Sail, Horace B Murphy III & Friends, Cavan Moran, Ocelus, Mikey J, Arnivore!, Roc Vicar, Lancaster Speakeasy DJs, Robin Walker, Marris Chestnut, Tom Woodland, Freear, Chris Flynn, Dr Butlers, Hard And Monkey, Holly Clarke, Kriss Foster, Lazlo Baby, Lumberjack Cowboy, Molly Warburton, Quincey Brown, Poeticat, Taylor And The Mason, The Dead Indians , The Yossarians, Death to the Strange, Carnival Moon, Specs, Papa Guns, The Flat Cap Three, Naymedici, Walk Like Fool Does, Ottersgear, DJ Sister Matic, V J Eefee, Popeye. www.kendalcalling.co.uk

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Proposals by US-based hedge fund man Daniel Loeb that Sony Corp should sell a slice of its entertainment business to help fund the restructuring of its struggling consumer electronics divisions have their opponents, insiders say, even though the top guard at the company is considering then.

As previously reported, Loeb's Third Point fund has a 6.5% stake in Sony Corp, making it one of the firm's biggest shareholders. He proposed a portion of the Sony music, movie and TV unit be sold to existing shareholders earlier this month, to free up monies to help rescue Sony Corp's struggling electronics business. And while Sony bosses have previously denied past rumours that they were considering selling some or all of their entertainment assets, last week they admitted they are given Loeb's plan some consideration.

That said, insiders say that some other significant Sony shareholders, especially those based in Japan, oppose Loeb's proposal, saying that it is a move that would deliver only short term benefits, and may cause long term harm.

Sony management confirmed it was considering Loeb's plans last week, ahead of an announcement that the company would also raise funds to help with recovery by issuing $1.5 billion in five year bonds to ordinary Japanese investors next month.

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Having announced last year plans to launch new music-based programmes into its Friday night schedules, Channel 4 has now confirmed that two new music shows are in development, both of which will appear as pilots later this year.

The first is a music quiz hosted by Nick Grimshaw and going by the utterly abysmal working title of 'That Music Show'. The other is a magazine programme hosted by Rizzle Kicks (amongst others) which also bears a pretty terrible working title, 'Smells Like Friday Night'. Before we go any further, let's sort these names out right now, shall we? Let's have 'Grimmy's Mega Music Showdown' and 'Rizzle Kicks The Living Shit Out Of Your Ears'. Look, I never said naming TV shows was my forte. Oh, just forget it.

Carefully sidestepping my suggestions (on account of him never having seen them and almost certainly having no idea who I am), Channel 4's Music Commissioning Editor Jonathan Rothery said: "We said last year that we wanted to provide a bigger platform for music on Channel 4 and the response from [the indie TV production company community] has been amazing - around 50 companies pitched over one hundred ideas. We've chosen these two fresh approaches to take to pilot, with a view to commissioning a full series for later this year".

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Italian football fans presumably weren't amongst the millions logging on to Psy's 'Gangnam Style' video on YouTube last year. Or if they were, the novelty of the song has worn off somewhat.

Either way, according to reports organisers of the half-time entertainments at the Italian Cup Final this weekend had to turn up the volume when Psy took to the stage to perform his big hit to drown out the boos coming from the terraces.

Poor Psy. With hindsight he should have asked his doppelganger from Cannes to do the gig for him - let the impostor get booed, I say.

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