CMU Daily - on the inside 6 Jan 2003
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In today's CMU Daily:
• 50 Cent in court,
• Judge bans Ross arrest video – for now,
• New York label office raid,
• Elton John replaces
• Blair as launch interview on LBC,
• Vines are fine and in the studio,
• Unique relaunch Pepsi Chart,
• Review: Atom And His Package - Attention!
• Blah Blah Blah, -Audio Bullys on the album,
• Coldplay set up charity fund from profits,
• Audioslave take on anti-homeless legislation,
• Duran Duran plan remix comeback,
• Duplaix to play global soul,
• Gates to record comic relief record


Who said: "We want to be the band to dance to when the bomb drops"?
Answer tomorrow


I know we always complain that nothing stays in the charts these days – that records shoot into the top ten on the back of overpriced marketing campaigns – only to disappear the following week. Tracks that enter low down the charts and then build as more people discover them are a good thing. But who is still buying the Las Ketchup and Cheeky Girls singles? Surely anyone who wants these singles has already got them.

Then again its Christmas time – no new releases – so very little changes in the retail charts. Which is why, although they’ve swapped places, this week's eleven best selling records are the same as last week's, with the Popstar girls still at number one with the very poor ‘Sound Of The Underground’.

In fact there’s only four new entries in the whole Top 40, all on the dance side of things - Erick Sermon Ft Redman at 14, Milk Inc at 18, Ck & Supreme Dream Team at 23 and Oxygen Ft Andrea Britton at 30.

The album chart is just as dull this week – though Robbie slips off the top spot to make way for Avril Lavigne, who rises from 4 to 1. No new entries of note – though post-Christmas spending money has put Justin Timberlake, Blue, Christina Aguilera and Jools Holland – all of whose albums had slipped out of the Top 40 – back into the chart.

Roll on the new releases and some decent entries into those charts next week. And with the Westlife release originally planned for this week postponed, perhaps something good will have a chance!


Rapper 50 Cent appeared in court on Friday for a preliminary hearing on those charges he picked up when police found two loaded guns in a vehicle he was travelling in. He didn’t speak during the court appearance, but outside the court house his lawyer stressed is innocence.

As reported last week 50 Cent was being driven to a gig when police stopped the car and found the weapons – New York law dictates that anyone traveling in a car with unlicensed guns on board is liable to face charges. But his lawyer Robert Kalina told MTV the rapper was "as innocent as anyone I've ever seen or heard."

Word is at least one of the guns was in the possession of 50 Cent’s bodyguard Timothy Bonaparte who was traveling with him at the time. Bonaparte, who is reportedly licensed to carry firearms in Connecticut and Florida, apparently works as a bounty hunter and claims the gun had been taken from a bail jumper he had been pursuing. Bonepart claims he planned to hand the gun into the police later that day.


A judge in Arizona has put a temporary ban on police releasing video footage of Diana Ross being arrest for drink driving last week. Ross’ attorney claimed the video footage in question had only been recorded once the police realised who was driving the car, and that the camera hadn’t actually been used as part of the arrest – therefore it wasn’t ‘public record’. He also claimed releasing the footage would damage Ross’ right to a fair trial. The police claimed the tapes were "made under the ordinary course of business” but Judge John F Kelly agreed to prevent the video’s being handed to media outlets until a full hearing on 14 Jan to discuss the case.


The LA Times has reported that federal investigators have searched the New York offices of record label Murder Inc as part of an ongoing investigation into label head Irv Gotti. The investigations relate to allegations that there is a financial link between Gotti and a New York drug gang called the ‘Supreme Team’, with claims money from drug trafficking helped Gotti, real name Irving Lorenzo, break into the music business. Agents from the FBI and the New York Police Department reportedly seized computers and documents during the raid.


In a bizarre bit of reprogramming an interview with the prime minister has been replaced by a chat with Elton John as part of the first breakfast show on the new look LBC – the London news radio station acquired by Chrysalis last year. With the talk station back on FM producers had hoped Tony Blair would take part in a telephone chat as part of the new look breakfast show fronted by Jane Moore. But when it came clear that didn’t fit in with Blair’s schedule they opted for an interview with Elton John, best man at Moore’s wedding to Sony boss Gary Farrow last year. No word on what John’s viewpoint on gun crime legislation or the situation in Iraq were, but nice to know Elton is ready to fill in should Blair become unavailable to run the country.


The Vines have denied reports made last week that the band were sent back to Australia, canceling Japanese and UK live dates, after an onstage brawl in Boston. A spokesperson for the band told Aussie website Undercover that "the Japanese and UK dates have been postponed so the band can complete new album. All UK shows will most definitely go ahead - they're just sorting out revised dates".

Reports last week suggested the on-stage brawl was part of a running feud among band members – a feud that might cause the band to split. But in a statement the band’s people say: "Three members of the band are currently shacked up together at a residence in an undisclosed neighbourhood in Sydney. They're quietly kicking back - as opposed to kicking each other - before heading into a Sydney studio next week to commence recording of the follow-up to the critically acclaimed 'Highly Evolved' album. The band completed all US dates including two shows that were reportedly cancelled in Indianapolis and Detroit. They performed to an average of 1,200 people every night and while it1s true there was the odd meltdown, the band are not breaking up or having an enforced leave of absence".


Unique broadcasting are entering the increasingly competitive chart show wars by revamping their Pepsi chart show, syndicated on most commercial pop stations – the new show will be called the Hit 40 UK. The revamp is timed to coincide with the launch of Radio 1’s new look chart show fronted by the young Wes Butters, and to combat the replacement of the Pepsi show with the Smash Hits Chart on all EMAP stations.

The show will still be fronted by Capital’s Neil Fox, who told reporters: "We've already got 900,000 more listeners than Radio 1, and maybe now we can lift that figure up to the magic million."

Although the show has lost its outlets on the EMAP stations a number of commercial stations who haven’t previously broadcast the chart show will be adding the new look programme to their schedules. These include Dune FM in Southport, Wave 96.5 in Blackpool, Fosseway Radio in Leicestershire and Rutland Radio, and the whole Galaxy network – the former home of Radio 1’s new recruit Butters.


REVIEW: Atom and His Package - Attention! Blah Blah Blah (Hopeless Records)
At last, the latest chapter in the soap opera life of Atom, a young man from Philly. Through his previous albums we know about his friends Brian, Jen and Ralph, what they all like doing, where they live and even what they look like. We know Atom’s crap at sports, that he likes to eat and that he’s a dab hand with his guitar and sequencer (the Package). On this new instalment, the strangely heavy-sounding drum machines and Teen-C sensibilities are still there, but they’re backed up with some beefy guitars and vocals that sound at times more like Idlewild than Idlewild do. The lyrics too are more cryptic than before, like William Burroughs guest-writing for Eastenders. As such Atom may or may not be 26, married, a professional gambler, have a new place and want to elope with his grandma. He even dabbles with politics (‘The Palestinians Are Not the Same Thing As the Rebel Alliance, Jackass’). But while it’s almost tempting sometimes to chuck Atom an email and ask him what he’s on about, one thing that he gives you that Easties never will is the chance to use your noggin to envision these stories any way you wish. DR
Release date: 11 Feb
Press contact: [all]


Audio Bullys, whose noisy number ‘We Don’t Care’ hits the stores today, have told Radio 1 their album, due in March, won’t follow the formula of the debut single. "The album in March, late March, that's the next big thing,” the band say. “That's done now, that's finished, so it's waiting to come out. It's very very different from 'We Don't Care' and a lot more, like, melodic and not just shouting - a lot of slower beats and hip-hop influenced stuff."


The Sun has reported Coldplay plan to donate 10% of all future earnings to charity. The paper says the band have set up a bank account into which to pay the funds, which will then be distributed to charities chosen by band members.

A band source said: "In this age of record company greed it's refreshing to see Coldplay donating some of this hard-earned cash to so many good causes. Few bands have ever done anything like this on such a scale."


Audioslave’s Tom Morello and System of a Down’s Serj Tankian – who have formed the 'Axis Of Justice' to raise awareness of various political and social issues across the world – have staged a press conference in Santa Monica to speak out against a city ruling which says homeless charities must obey the same rules as restaurants if they hand out food, something that campaigners reckon will prevent charities from distributing food to the needy in the local area.

Speaking to MTV Morello says: "When Axis of Justice first heard of this law, we said the first day it goes into effect, lunch is on us. We'll continue to do it in defiance of the law. I'm not worried police are going to show up and arrest us, I'm worried homeless people are going to be hungry tonight. This is a tremendously cruel law that criminalises compassion. In a city as wealthy as Santa Monica, there's no reason everybody shouldn't have a home and enough to eat, along with the appropriate job training or mental heath services or drug or alcohol rehabilitation, whatever they need to get back on their feet. Those are the things the city council should be focusing on, not trying to deny hungry people food."

Tankian added: "I don't understand. The homeless have never been a problem. Businesses want the homeless out of the way because it doesn't look good. This is Los Angeles — it has to look good. In reality, it's not stopping business. Their sales are at record highs. It doesn't matter. The truth of the matter is it's going to leave these people starving."

After the conference Morello and Tankian distributed food to the homeless population and then marched through the local streets in protest.


Duran Duran are planning a bit of comeback in 2003 courtesy of a collection of remixes by leading producers. Word is the band, who have become a bit cool again of late, have lined up Royksopp, New Order and Moby to remix tracks for a forthcoming album. Talking to the Sun Simon Le Bon said: "2003 is a big year for us."


The Global Soul people are flying in Vikter Duplaix (check the interview on CMU OnLine this week) to play a set at the Global Soul Welcome to 2003 party at Cherry Jam W2 on Wednesday. Doors open at 9pm, tickets are £10. He’ll DJ alongside Don Weeks.


Gareth Gates will record this year’s Comic Relief single, which will be released in the run up to Red Nose Day on 14 Mar. No decision yet on what the track will be, or whether it will be a cover or an original track. Gates will also take part in Celebrity Driving School as part of the Comic Relief programme.

Elsewhere in the world of pop idols, word is Gates is planning to work out and build up those muscles in a bid to woo some older female fans. He told Sky News "My main aim for the New Year is to work out more. I want to get really big." Apparently his management urged him to work out to further his appeal among record buyers – wonder if they considered releasing a decent record?


Answer to Friday's pop quiz:
Here’s the songs, on what movies soundtracks did they respectively appear?
Bowie & Queen's 'Under Pressure' – Grosse Pointe Blank
Cher's 'Shoop Shoop Song' – Mermaids
Mariah Carey's 'Fantasy' - Rush Hour

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