An UnLimited Media Bulletin
Monday 12 May 2014

TODAY'S TOP STORY: Four of the biggest internet service providers in the UK are in talks with the content industries about establishing a Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme, which in essence would introduce stage one of the long discussed three strikes - or graduated response - system for combating online piracy. As much previously reported, three strikes is a system by which rights owners - including record... [READ MORE]
TODAY'S APPROVED: Raised in Paris, Tehran and the Americas, and part-Iranian, part-Egyptian, part-English in heritage, it naturally follows that the NYC-based Lafawndah's first EP, the four track 'Lawfawndah', is a fairly wild mix of altered sonic states and vari-national criss-crossings. It was made on Guaedelope, the Franco-Caribbean isle, with Emily King, aka Garagem Banda, and old-time zouk icon Jean Claude Bichara as... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES UK ISPs negotiating voluntary 'strike one' system to combat piracy
LEGAL Two arrested over bootleg CD operation
DEALS Big Boi to work with Epic on new LP
Sony/ATV announces initial roster for neighbouring rights unit
LIVE BUSINESS German live firm takes controlling stake in Kilimanjaro
DIGITAL & D2F SERVICES Deezer UK MD also to exit
MEDIA BBC local radio presenter loses job over racist song broadcast
THE GREAT ESCAPE The record industry's optimism should centre on direct-to-fan, says CMU's Chris Cooke
As Tru Thoughts celebrates fifteen years, co-founder Robert Luis inspires future label entrepreneurs at The Great Escape
Yearly Music Convention Awards presented
INDUSTRY PEOPLE Deltasonic founder Alan Wills dies following crash
ARTIST NEWS One Direction movie sequel in the works
AND FINALLY... Morrissey denies trying to force Paws to cancel US show
Wayne Coyne hits back at "hateful" former Flaming Lips drummer
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UK ISPs negotiating voluntary 'strike one' system to combat piracy
Four of the biggest internet service providers in the UK are in talks with the content industries about establishing a Voluntary Copyright Alert Programme, which in essence would introduce stage one of the long discussed three strikes - or graduated response - system for combating online piracy.

As much previously reported, three strikes is a system by which rights owners - including record companies, movie studios and TV producers - can alert ISPs to suspected file-sharers of unlicensed content. Under the system the ISP would then be obliged to send the suspected file-sharer a letter explaining they are infringing copyright (strike one); then, if the file-sharing continues, a second sterner letter ordering the file-sharer to stop (strike two); and finally a third letter threatening some sort of reduction in service if the file-sharing continues (strike three).

The 2010 Digital Economy Act put in place a framework for such a system to launch in the UK (albeit with strike three undefined), but four years on that graduated response programme is yet to go live, partly because of resistance and delaying tactics from the net firms. Meanwhile in the US, where legislators have not made any moves in this domain, the ISPs have voluntarily introduced an albeit moderate version of the scheme called the Copyright Alert System.

What is now being discussed between the record and movie industries in the UK and Virgin Media, BT, Sky and TalkTalk is probably more similar to the US system, though the net companies probably hope that, if they voluntarily agree to start sending educational letters to suspected file-sharers, it might permanently halt moves to put the statuary system set out in the DEA in place. Though it's thought that the VCAP initiative will not have any draconian sanction to throw at those who ignore the educational letters.

Initial reports on Friday that VCAP was a done deal and ready to go have been denied by the record industry's trade body the BPI, though it confirmed that talks are ongoing, and industry insiders say they are hopeful the initiative could launch later this year. According to the BBC, the current draft framework would see the content industries provide some funding to the ISPs to run the scheme, and that there would be cap on how many individuals the labels and studios could file complaints about each year.

A spokesperson for the BPI said: "Content creators and ISPs have, with the support of government, been working in partnership to develop a joint awareness programme that would support the growth of legal digital entertainment services, reduce illegal downloading and create the best possible customer experience online. Discussions are ongoing and no agreement has been reached - reports that an announcement is imminent are wide of the mark. We will comment further if and when any agreement is in place".

Two arrested over bootleg CD operation
The City Of London Police's IP Crime Unit has announced the arrest of two people in Lancashire last week over allegations that they were running a bootleg CD operation worth tens of thousands of pounds.

It's alleged that the man and woman who have been charged sold illegally produced CDs featuring music from numerous hit artists via an online marketplace. PIPCU began its investigation into the pair after the case was referred to them by record industry trade body the BPI.

Andy Fyfe, Head of PIPCU, told reporters: "The creative industries in the UK are a real success story however intellectual property crime is costing them millions of pounds each year and is putting legitimate businesses and jobs across the industry at risk. PIPCU is committed to preventing and disrupting IP crime and will continue to work with our partners across all industries to tackle those criminals who are ripping off UK businesses across the globe".

Big Boi to work with Epic on new LP
Outkast's Big Boi has confirmed he has signed up with Sony label Epic for his in-the-pipeline new solo album, which sees him working once again with Epic US boss LA Reid, who originally signed André 'André 3000' Benjamin and Antwan 'Big Boi' Patton to his La Face label back in 1992.

Confirming the new deal, Big Boi is quoted by Huffington Post as saying: "I'm back with [Antonio] LA Reid and Sylvia Rhone. Got a brand new situation".

As for the new record, he admitted the live reunion with his Outkast partner will delay things slightly, adding: "I wanted to put something out before the end of the year. It depends, because me and Dre got a lot of work to do from now until the end of October. [But] you're definitely going to get some brand new Big Boi material. Two or three singles before the fall".


Sony/ATV announces initial roster for neighbouring rights unit
The Sony music publishing company Sony/ATV has announced more about its shift into neighbouring rights, a development which means the firm is now handling sound recording as well as song-based royalties for some of its roster, a move also made by others in the publishing space in recent years, perhaps most notably Kobalt.

And Sony/ATV's neighbouring rights division, which is UK-based, has now confirmed that Pharrell Williams, Robin Thicke, Nile Rodgers, Clean Bandit and the estate of Lou Reed are amongst its launch clients.

Sony/ATV's President, UK and European Creative Guy Moot told CMU: "We're trying to do this differently. We're viewed as a big company, but this is a very personal service, not a one-size fits-all, plug it into the system. This is very hands-on and bespoke but with all the benefits of the synergies we have inside the company like broadcasting tracking and creative".

Neighbouring rights was put under the spotlight during the Maximising Music Rights strand at The Great Escape last week, and look out for a report on that debate later this week. Or read our pre-TGE interview with one of the specialists that took part in the session, Ann Tausis from the aforementioned Kobalt.

German live firm takes controlling stake in Kilimanjaro
The independent live firm Kilimanjaro announced a deal on Friday which will see German company DEAG take a controlling stake in the business. Led by Stuart Galbraith, Kilimanjaro once had AEG Live as its main business partner, but has been in independent ownership for a while now.

Confirming the new deal, Galbraith, who will continue to run his firm as well as offering expertise to the new parent company, told CMU: "This is an exciting time for Kilimanjaro. We have always operated as an independent promoter and this deal allows us to continue to do so whilst benefiting from the support and reach of being affiliated with an organisation such as DEAG. We already have a lot of exciting projects in place for 2014 and this deal will mean that our customers and supporters can expect the same and more in 2015. It's a time for growth and investment in our core regular projects whilst looking for interesting opportunities wherever they arise".

Meanwhile Detlef Kornett, Executive Board Member of DEAG, added: "This is a further strong stride into the UK market for us with a strong and well respected partner helping us to double our turnover in this market. We are also hoping that opportunities with exciting artists and tours for Germany, Austria and Switzerland will arise".

Deezer UK MD also to exit
Following the news that Deezer's CEO Alex Dauchez was stepping down, now the streaming firm's UK MD, Mark Foster, is set to depart, according to Music Week.

Whereas Duachez will not leave until September, it seems Foster's exit will be more immediate, with the former saying of the latter's decision to leave: "Mark undertook an incredible journey when he launched Deezer in the UK, making it a key player in the revival of the global music industry and in the development of streaming as the way to discover and consume music".

Dauchez went on: "I want to thank him for everything he has achieved and wish him all the best in his new endeavours. It's business as usual here at Deezer while we are on the lookout for Mark's replacement".

BBC local radio presenter loses job over racist song broadcast
A presenter on BBC Radio Devon, David Lowe, has lost his job after he last month inadvertently played a version of 'The Sun Has Got His Hat On' featuring a racist word. Although later offered his job back, Lowe said that due to health problems exacerbated by the stress of the incident, he would stay off the air.

The 1932 recording of the song by Ambrose And His Orchestra features a line generally omitted from later versions, saying: "He's been tanning niggers out in Timbuktu, now he's coming back to do the same to you". Lowe said that he had not realised that the line featured in the song, and that playing it was "an innocent mistake".

The presenter told BBC News: "I offered to apologise or to fall on my sword. Unfortunately the BBC decided on the latter option. I don't have any quarrels with any of my colleagues. It's the system of political correctness which has turned this into a rather badly handled affair. I think we're all too ready to bow to political correctness. One feels one is following a verbal tightrope, even in casual conversation. I made a silly mistake, my first error in more than 30 years of broadcasting. I am deeply embarrassed by it".

A spokesperson for the BBC said that it felt the matter had been handled badly, and had offered Lowe his job back, but he had declined. They said: "We have offered David Lowe the opportunity to continue presenting his 'Singers And Swingers' show, and we would be happy to have him back on air. We accept that the conversation with David about the mistake could have been handled better, but if he chooses not to continue then we would like to thank him for his time presenting on the station and wish him well for the future".

Explaining his decision, Lowe said that a medical condition which causes tremors in his limbs had become worse due to the stress of the incident and its fallout: "It was a magnanimous decision of the BBC to offer my job back and if not for the impact this has had on my health I would have accepted, but my health comes first".

The record industry's optimism should centre on direct-to-fan, says CMU's Chris Cooke
CMU Business Editor Chris Cooke noted the renewed optimism that has been seen in the record industry of late at the top of his keynote speech at The Great Escape on Friday, though wondered whether labels are feeling more optimistic for the wrong reasons. The booming streaming market - in Europe, North America and elsewhere - may be a reason to be cheerful in the recorded music sector, but on that trend Cooke airs caution.

He said: "The streaming market is yet to prove itself, to become solid and stable. It's a sector still in the start-up stage; these are tech starts-ups backed by venture capitalists in the pre-IPO phase of their businesses. They are being built up to be sold, either via a stock market flotation or one massive transaction, and for those start-ups that big deal is what everything is really about".

He went on: "That's not a criticism, that's the tech start-up game. It's about maximising perceived vale, which means you are primarily in the hype game, because we're talking about perceived future value, not real value today. Streaming companies are currently loss leaders, but what happens post-IPO? That's the big question. And that makes Pandora the most interesting digital service to watch".

Cooke noted that since its flotation Pandora in the US has been busy trying to negotiate down the royalties it pays to the music companies - much to the annoyance of labels and publishers - but, said the CMU editor, rights owners should prepare themselves for similar demands being made elsewhere in the streaming market once all the big players go beyond their IPOs or sales and start to try and build profitable businesses. Streaming will definitely have a crucial part to play for the foreseeable future of the music industry, but quite how that will work is far from certain.

However, Cooke went on, that shouldn't stop the optimism. It's just that labels should be optimistic not because of streaming, but because of the rise of direct-to-fan.

"The single most exciting thing - and the biggest opportunity - in the web-era music industry is direct to fan", he said. "In the 1990s artists didn't know who their artists were beyond the mosh pit and fan letter. Not only that, artists' primary business partners - the labels and tour promoters - didn't even know who the fans were, they relied on the retailers and ticketing companies to reach the fans".

"In the web age artists know exactly who their core fanbase are. And it seems to me that the music industry of the 1990s totally under-serviced core fanbase. The strategy of the labels - especially the majors - was we sign 20 artists, of which ten will fail, eight might break even, one is a moderate success, and one is Coldplay, which pays for everything else. But with those artists who supposedly failed, certainly the eight that broke even, there was probably a viable business if you better serviced core fanbase".

"Because we didn't give those fans enough opportunities to spend", Cooke went on. "Buy one record every three years, ten pounds. Buy a gig ticket every eighteen months, £45. But what if the fan had £20 a month to spend with the artists? They weren't given the opportunity to do so. That's where the real value of direct-to-fan comes in. There were logistical reasons why we didn't properly service core fanbase in the past, but the web changes that; get direct-to-fan right and there are many more opportunities to sell these fans stuff. And labels should be getting involved in those opportunities with their artists as the direct to fan experts".

Because, Cooke concluded, that's the music business in 2014. "You find an artist, you build a fanbase, and then you sell them shit". Simple. You can hear the keynote in full now by clicking here, plus check out Cooke's 'Where We're At' key trends summary that opened TGE this year by clicking here.


As Tru Thoughts celebrates fifteen years, co-founder Luis inspires future label entrepreneurs at The Great Escape
The fifteenth anniversary of Brighton's own Tru Thoughts was celebrated at this year's Great Escape Convention last week, with the label's co-founder Robert Luis telling his company's story and inspiring the next generation of label entrepreneurs as part of TGE's DIY programme for the grass roots music community.

CMU's Chris Cooke, interviewing, noted that Tru Thoughts launched just as the record industry was heading into a decade of turmoil, but Luis says he knew that at the time. "I was friends with Mark Rae at Grand Central and Sav Remzi at Nuphonic, who'd both been putting out 100,000+ selling albums, and were suddenly releasing records and everyone was just downloading them [illegally]. And they were panicking about that, and rightly so".

"But it meant that we knew that when we released our first Bonobo album lots of people were going to just download it", he added. "So we were careful on what we spent from the start, which really helped. And still does".

Being careful with what you spend is a good tip for all indie labels, and especially for any budding label owners considering setting up their own record company. But Luis had other advice too for anyone considering launching a label.

"Have a few releases ready to go before you officially launch. I made a few records under pseudonyms to make it look like we were bigger than we were! I wanted to release something every month or two, because after record four or five, people will start to say 'who are these people - I should be checking them out'. We also really benefitted from having the existing club night, and that's definitely something I'd recommend new labels consider".

Meanwhile, on getting your artists heard, Luis added: "One tip would be not to forget the local level when launching new artists. I realised, having run a club in Brighton and having initially struggled to get promos from the big record companies as a DJ, if you send music to a DJ in Portsmouth or Bristol who are DJing to 200 or 300 people a week, they are probably more important, in that they are more likely to listen and quickly latch on to your releases than the big radio DJs, who are sent so many new records every week".

You can hear the full conversation between Luis and Cooke here.


Yearly Music Convention Awards presented
The Yearly Music Convention Awards 2014 took place on the final day of The Great Escape this weekend, celebrating the showcase festival and music convention season just gone, with hosts - Great Escape co-founder Martin Elbourne and Louder Than War's John Robb - donning Abba costumes for the event (Abba's Eurovision win 40 years ago having occurred in TGE's flagship venue Brighton Dome, just in case you wondered).

Sponsored this year by Brighton's own ACUMEN MEDIA LAW, new talent and music business events from all over the world took home YMCA trophies, while a new annual prize - the Brighton Legend award - went to Charlie Myatt from 13 Artists, the leading booking agency based in the city.

And here is the full list of YMCA winners.

Best Networking Event Or Service: Wide Days Edinburgh bus tour (UK)

Best Delegates Bag: BigSound (Australia)

Best Delegates Bar: M&M Finland

Best Convention Centre: Eurosonic (The Netherlands)

Best App: Reeperbahn (Germany)

Best New Showcase Festival: Nouvelle Prague (Czech Republic)

Best Showcase Or Party: Aussie BBQ at Canadian Music Week

Best Export Office: New Zealand Export Office

Best City Champion: Tallinn Music Week (Estonia)

Convention Junkie: Michael Chugg

Brighton Legend in association with ACUMEN MEDIA LAW: Charlie Myatt, 13 Artists

Deltasonic founder Alan Wills dies following crash
The founder of Liverpool record label Deltasonic, Alan Wills, has died after sustaining serious head injuries in a traffic accident while cycling in the city last week.

Wills, also former drummer for the bands Shack and Top, was knocked off his bicycle on Thursday evening, and was taken to University Hospital Aintree where he later died from his injuries. People are appealing for witnesses to the accident to come forward.

In a statement, Inspector Mike McFall of Merseyside Police said: "We are investigating the full circumstances of this incident and would appeal to anyone who was in the area at the time and might have seen something to call police. The information you provide could be really important for our enquiries".

He added: "The incident took place on East Prescot Road near to the junction with Ashover Avenue, which is a busy area and I would urge anyone with information to call Merseyside Police on 0151 777 5747, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111".

Deltasonic was founded in 2000, initially as a joint venture with Sony Music, with its first signing being The Coral. The company went on to work with acts including The Suzukis, The Rascals, The Zutons and, through its publishing division, The Last Shadow Puppets.

Amongst the many artists Wills knew, or had worked with, who have paid tribute to the Deltasonic founder overnight is Ian McNabb, frontman of Liverpool band The Icicle Works.

He told The Liverpool Echo: "I knew Alan off and on for 30 years. First I knew him as the drummer in Shack and Top then as the driving force behind his record and publishing companies. He helped many local musicians live their dreams through his hard work and belief in their music. He was passionate about the things that count in this life and I am very sad to hear he has been taken away in the cruellest and most shocking way possible. Another great musical mentor of Liverpool has gone too soon".

  Approved: Lafawndah
Raised in Paris, Tehran and the Americas, and part-Iranian, part-Egyptian, part-English in heritage, it naturally follows that the NYC-based Lafawndah's first EP, the four track 'Lawfawndah', is a fairly wild mix of altered sonic states and vari-national criss-crossings.

It was made on Guaedelope, the Franco-Caribbean isle, with Emily King, aka Garagem Banda, and old-time zouk icon Jean Claude Bichara as producers. Tracks like closing frog chorus 'Tango Down' - to name one, though I could name any - are a hot liquid solder of close-crowded sounds, from the picante moombaton of 'Chili', to Kelela-esque beatdown 'Butter'.

As a whole, it's a mass of metal, bones and bass clanking, of sticky tribal heats rising, of things torn up from the earth (or "decontextualised") and put back into new ground. It's strange, brave and discombobulating, and so you should probably just dive in and find it for yourself, right now.
CLICK HERE to read and share online

One Direction movie sequel in the works
One Direction are shooting a sequel to their Morgan Spurlock-directed 2013 documentary film, 'This Is Us'. So that's something for us all to look forward too.

Speaking to The Mirror, Spurlock said: "Yes, there will be a follow-up to 'This Is Us'. At this moment Ben Winston is with the band on their world tour filming what happens. He worked with me and is a great producer".

Winston also directed the video for the band's latest single, 'You & I', which you can watch here.

Morrissey denies trying to force Paws to cancel US show
A spokesperson for Morrissey has denied that the singer tried to force Paws to cancel a show in California last week.

The Glasgow band supporting We Are Scientists at The Constellation Room on Thursday, a smaller venue connected to Santa Ana's Observatory, where Morrissey was performing the same night.

In a lengthy Facebook post, Paws explained: "We received a call from the promoter/venue telling us that Morrissey ... had requested that no live music be heard during his set. So, in order to adhere to curfews, this would mean that we couldn't play our opening slot as it would clash with Morrissey's and We Are Scientists' headline show would be cut short and heavily delayed (until after Morrissey's show)".

They continued: "We were then informed that in respect of this cancellation, we had been offered to be paid double our guarantee for our troubles as per a clause in the contract for the show, but it was also asserted that we didn't really have a choice in the matter; for example, we didn't really get any sort of option to try and make the show work, it was just very cut and dry. So in short, we were essentially getting paid not to play".

Reacting to the request, the band said: "Although all bands in our situation could very much do with the extra money, it didn't sit right with us that we were essentially, very much literally, being silenced; being bought out, and for reasons that, when explained to us as above, not only seemed trivial but seemed to fit the unfortunate egotistical stereotypes that Morrissey has come to embody in recent years, not least as we had been informed that he has already been noted for cancelling several shows".

The show later went ahead without cancellation, after the set times were moved to, in We Are Scientist's words, "after Moz's bedtime".

This gave WAS time to pop in and watch Morissey's performance, on which they commented via Twitter: "Turns out the reason Morrissey doesn't want competing noise is that it might clue people in to what singing in tune sounds like".

A spokesperson for Morrissey later denied that Morrissey had made any request for Paws to cancel their set, telling Pitchfork: "Morrissey had nothing to do with this. As long as there was no sound bleed, Morrissey was completely fine with another show going on inside the same complex".


Wayne Coyne hits back at "hateful" former Flaming Lips drummer
Flaming Lips frontman Wayne Coyne has labelled his band's former drummer Kliph Spurlock a "hateful person" and "compulsive pathological liar" in response to Spurlock's account of his departure from the outfit, recently published by Pitchfork.

Spurlock claimed that he had been fired from the band back in March because he had taken a stand against what he saw as a racist Facebook post by a friend of Coyne's, Christina Fallin, in which she wore a Native American headdress.

He told Pitchfork that Coyne sent him a series of angry text messages about the incident, but that he had assumed it would blow over, as he had "become used to [Coyne's] lightning quick temper". But, he says, the matter escalated to the point where he was fired from the band. He also claimed that a later Instagram post by Coyne featuring a dog wearing a headdress was directly intended to mock him.

However, fellow Flaming Lips member Steven Drozd then denied that any of this had anything to do with Spurlock leaving the band, blaming instead "the usual band musical differences".

Meanwhile in an interview with Rolling Stone last week, Coyne said: "The only thing that we would have to say about Kliph leaving is that he just was not very significant to us. And all the things he's saying about the reason he was fired, it's all just made-up lies. He knows we struggled with him for years and it didn't occur to us that it seemed that significant. I don't even use the word 'fired'. He just doesn't play drums with us anymore - that's the way I'd put it".

Addressing the situation with Fallin directly, Coyne said: "The reason that it's connected to the Fallin thing, it's like, 'If you're going to be that hateful, you can't be associated with the Flaming Lips'. And that was one of a thousand things that he would go on his Twitter or Instagram or the fake ones that he's created ... But Christina is our friend. She's young, and she's trying to feel her way through social media and I don't think she's very good at it. And Kliph is an online bully".

You can read Spurlock's original statement to Pitchfork in full here, and Coyne Rolling Stone interview here.

ANDY MALT | Editor
Andy heads up the team, overseeing the CMU bulletin and website, coordinating features and interviews, reporting on artist and business stories, and contributing to the CMU Approved column.
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CHRIS COOKE | Co-Publisher, Business Editor & Insights Director
Chris provides music business coverage, writing key business news and analysis. Chris also leads the CMU Insights training and consultancy business, and is MD of CMU publisher UnLimited Media.
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ALY BARCHI | Staff Writer
Aly reports on artist news, coordinates the festival, gig and release round up columns, and contributes to the CMU Approved column. She also writes for CMU's sister title ThisWeek London.
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SAM TAYLOR | Commercial Manager & Insights Associate
Sam oversees the commercial side of the CMU media, leading on sales and sponsorship, plus helps manage and deliver the CMU Insights training courses and consultancy services.
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CARO MOSES | Co-Publisher
Caro helps oversee the CMU media, while as a Director of UnLimited Media she heads up the company's other two titles ThisWeek London and ThreeWeeks Edinburgh, and supports other parts of the business.
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