An UnLimited Media Bulletin
Tuesday 15 Jul 2014

TODAY'S TOP STORY: Country music fans in Dublin have had the rope swing of hope dangled just out of reach for the last couple of weeks, but finally it has been snatched away. Garth Brooks will definitely not play any shows in the city this month, and all 400,000 tickets will now be refunded. The whole saga has been quite a rollercoaster, as detailed in last week's Beef Of The Week column. Brooks announced two shows... [READ MORE]
TODAY'S APPROVED: Singer-songwriter Mina Tindle released her debut album, 'Taranta', back in 2012. On 6 Oct she's set to release the follow-up, titled 'Parades'. Following 'I Command' back in May, the second single from the album is also now available, which is only slightly confusingly called 'Taranta'. Delivered in breezy French style (she is French, I should probably point out), both first single 'I Command' and 'Taranta'... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Garth Brooks says Dublin shows will definitely not go ahead
LEGAL Tulisa drugs trial begins
DEALS Believe label announces new signings
DIGITAL & D2F SERVICES Dotcom planning stock market flotation for Baboom
Rdio playback available within Shazam app on iPhone
Suitors reportedly lining up for
Omnifone to power Neil Young's Pono download service
MEDIA Bauer and UTV to bid together for second UK-wide digital radio network
ARTIST NEWS Tupac musical to close this weekend
GIGS & FESTIVALS The National to close tour in London
Bonnie 'Prince' Billy announces London shows
Jess Glynne announces UK tour
Kate Boy announce London show
Sylvan Esso heading out on tour
AND FINALLY... Fatboy Slim not digging Cowell's DJ talent telly show concept
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Garth Brooks says Dublin shows will definitely not go ahead
Country music fans in Dublin have had the rope swing of hope dangled just out of reach for the last couple of weeks, but finally it has been snatched away. Garth Brooks will definitely not play any shows in the city this month, and all 400,000 tickets will now be refunded.

The whole saga has been quite a rollercoaster, as detailed in last week's Beef Of The Week column. Brooks announced two shows at Dublin's Croke Park stadium late last year. Demand for the shows led to three more being added, all of which sold out. But earlier this month Dublin City Council threw a spanner in the works, partly due to pressure from some local residents, by enforcing the venue's licence, which limits it to three live music shows per year.

Brooks stamped his feet and said that it was five or nothing, as the council attempted to find a compromise. Then the company organising the shows, Aiken Promotions, announced that it had "exhausted all avenues" and that the shows were definitely, no questions, totally and utterly cancelled. But negotiations nonetheless continued (the Mexican ambassador even offering to mediate), and Brooks pleaded with Aiken to try harder to keep the dream alive.

With refunds originally due to go out yesterday morning, Ticketmaster pushed back the date to Thursday, as negotiations continued, and the world held its breath.

Well, you can breathe again, world, because it's over. Having previously said that he couldn't bear to tell 160,000 people that they couldn't come and see him after all, because his shows were like his children, it's been decided once and for all that it's much better to disappoint all 400,000 fans.

In a statement yesterday evening, Brooks said: "I have always been advised to NEVER send a message in 'the moment'. It is said it is best to take a walk, wait awhile, and think about it. With that said, I just received the news the Dublin City Council cannot change their earlier ruling to not allow the licenses for all five shows. To say I am crushed is an understatement. All I see is my mother's face and I hear her voice. She always said things happen for a reason and for the right reason. As hard as I try, I cannot see the light on this one. So it is with a broken heart, I announce the ticket refunds for the event will go as posted by Ticketmaster".

He's not throwing blame around though, he continued: "I want to thank the Irish authorities for going the distance for all of us who wanted to share songs and dance together. I really want to thank all the people around the world that continued to think good thoughts that this would actually happen. Most of all, to [Aiken Promotions boss] Peter Aiken and those 400,000 people who believed enough to go through what they have been through to get to this point. I love you, always have, always will. I encourage any and all of them that can come see the show, at some point around the world, to bring your Irish flags and wave them proudly at the concerts. I will be looking for you".

Yeah, disappointed Irish Garth Brooks fans, why don't you make the bloody effort and travel to another country to see him? Or, you could book tickets to five of those foreign shows, get someone to refuse to allow you to go to two of them (perhaps an employer or a loved one), and then just tear up all the tickets instead, to get the full experience.

In a statement this morning, Aiken Promotions added: "Aiken Promotions regret to announce that despite pursuing all possible solutions, the five concert Garth Brooks Comeback Special Event at Croke Park is cancelled. No concerts will take place".

Ticketholders are due to begin getting refunds at 9am on Thursday, which gives just enough time for this to turn out to be another round of bluff calling.

Tulisa drugs trial begins
Tulisa Contostavlos's trial on charges to supplying Class A drugs to an undercover Sun journalist began yesterday with her co-defendant Michael Coombes pleading guilty to charges against him.

As previously reported, Contostavlos is accused of setting up a drug deal between Coombes, aka rapper Mike GLC, and The Sun's 'fake sheikh' Mazher Mahmood in May last year.

The singer denies her alleged part in the deal, though Coombes admitted at Southwark Crown Court yesterday to supplying half an ounce of cocaine for £860. He will be sentenced at the end of the trial and will remain free on bail until then.

The other incident of note yesterday came when Tulisa got a nosebleed in the dock, which some people were suggesting was ironic, given the circumstances of the case. Such suggestions didn't occur in court though, I should probably stress. That's just social media talk. The proceedings were adjourned while she recovered.

As the case against Tulisa herself continues today, a jury was due to be sworn in this morning, ahead of the prosecution's opening statements.

Believe label announces new signings
Believe Recordings, the sister label to the Believe Digital distribution business, has announced no less than seven new signings, who will benefit from deals which, Believe says, "enable artists more input, flexibility and scope in their releases".

The new signings are Fyfe, Andreas Moe, Aquilo, Esse, The Age of Luna and Meadowlark, plus Believe has announced a joint venture with Good Soldier, the new music company from former Warner Music UK chief Christian Tattersfield, with the two firms working together with Irish singer songwriter Gavin James. The Believe label hopes to replicate the successes it has had with, amongst others, James Vincent McMorrow and, on their debut EP, Bastille, with the new singings.

Stephen King, now Chief International Officer of Believe Digital, and founder of the Believe label, told CMU: "Believe's A&R team have identified a crop of really talented young acts that we are able to promote and expose with the promotion teams' key understanding of the digital market. Having now established Believe Recordings as an exciting label for exceptional new music, our recent signings are

Dotcom planning stock market flotation for Baboom
Kim Dotcom plans to float his new direct-to-fan platform Baboom on Sydney's Australian Securities Exchange, it has emerged. The company is set to apply for a listing on the Aussie share market later this year.

As previously reported, a demo of the D2F platform, which aims to enable artists to distribute downloads and streams, sell tickets and merch, and monetise their content - if they wish - via advertising, went live at the start of the year with a profile built around Dotcom's own music.

The company is just completing a AUS$4.5 million investment round, and the prospectus for potential investors offers more information about both the service and the company's business plan, including the intention to list on the ASE. According to the prospectus, a proper beta period is now planned for Baboom in the third quarter before a full launch towards the end of the year.

While - as a combined download, streaming and direct-to-fan platform - Baboom will operate in three different competitive marketplaces, the start-up reckons that its combined offer, high-quality audio and generous terms to artists will help it succeed. The service will also be promoted to users of Dotcom's file-storage business Mega.

Of course, the fact that Dotcom himself is facing litigation from both the movie and music industries in the US, in relation to his former file-transfer business MegaUpload, might hinder Baboom's ambitions, in that labels will be resistant to do business with the new platform, initially at least. And while Dotcom seems convinced there are plenty of independent artists ready to join the Baboom party, previous claims that sophisticated direct-to-fan technologies will render labels redundant have never came true.

But the Baboom documents deal with this concern, noting: "Owing to Kim Dotcom's MegaUpload heritage, some users and music suppliers may not favour using or engaging with Baboom, and labels may be reluctant to license material. Baboom intends to assure labels and collecting societies they will be appropriately recompensed for all material used. Baboom will also acquire music from friendly major artists and will host original independent artists who choose to upload their own material, creating a new repository of music no matter how much major label material is available".


Rdio playback available within Shazam app on iPhone
Want to know what that record is?

You know, the one that's playing over there.

And not only want to know what it is, but want your phone to play it back at you right now?

Yeah, even though we've already ascertained the record is playing over there already. Ignore that.

And want do identify and listen to the track while only opening one app on your iPhone, to save yourself the heavy lifting of having to open a second app in close succession?

Well you, kind sir or madam, are in luck.

Because the latest upgrade of the Shazam iOS app not only offers you the option to click through to Rdio to stream or playlist the track you're identifying, but now you can have it play right there through the Shazam app itself. Such are the happy days in which we live.

You'll need a premium Rdio subscription mind. You Spotify users aren't welcome to this in-app playing party, not since the mysterious and only slightly messy Shazam/Spotify divorce that occurred (in some territories) earlier this year.

But don't worry Spotify users, you can still play iTunes previews within the app. And I've never come across a song that isn't improved by a 30 second edit.

Rdio-powered in-app play should be added to Shazam's Android app soon too, with similar in-app playback via other streamers also planned.


Suitors reportedly lining up for
It's all about the playlists these days, isn't it? That's where the smart venture capital's going. And if any venture capitalists out there are interested in acquiring the CMU playlists archive, well, a good steak dinner and they're yours. A good steak dinner mind. I'm a shrewd businessman. I'm not being tricked into an Aberdeen Steak House, oh no.

So yes, apps and platforms that aggregate playlists playable via Spotify et al, that's what we're here to talk about today, and following the news last week that US playlisting site had secured $2 million in investment, there is inevitable speculation this week that UK-based playlist aggregator is in talks with potential suitors.

Although the playlist start-up is yet to formally comment, a source has told TechCrunch that - formerly ShareMyPlaylists - has now been approached with offers from a number of companies, including tech and music firms. And said sources seem to be predicting that a deal could occur in the next few weeks.

Start-ups that have been busy creating playlists over recent years - whether by having in-house curation teams or allowing punters to upload their own lists - are now of interest to two sets of bidders. Streaming platforms which reckon they need an inbuilt playlists library to help users navigate their vast catalogues of music (hence Google's acquisition of Songza). And investors who reckon that streaming service agnostic playlist platforms are the future. is very much in the latter camp, enabling users to listen to playlists through a variety of streaming services, depending on their personal preferences, subscriptions, location and track availability. to date has been very much locked to Spotify, its own technology being focused on helping users find the playlist they are looking for. Though while its playlist library would be of value to a streaming platform, it too might be best to pursue a platform agnostic future (maybe by merging with Tomahawk to become a full-on competitor, but with a bigger library of lists).

Of course, if we do start to see serious money being invested into playlisting platforms which themselves do not licence any music from the labels and publishers, the question might be raised again about the intellectual property in playlists themselves. If a DJ, artist or other notable is generating traffic with their playlists of music in which they don't have a personal stake, will they start to seek a royalty for use of their compilation skills?

Which, legally speaking, reposes the questions first raised in the Ministry Of Sound v Spotify dispute that never got to court. Ministry, by the way, having settled with Spotify in the playlisting litigation, is now loading its content up onto the streaming platform.


Omnifone to power Neil Young's Pono download service
The silly people who gave Neil Young $6 million to get his silly high quality audio Pono business up and running will no doubt be pleased to learn that he's only just worked out how he's going to delivery that high quality audio to them.

The PonoMusic store will be powered by Omnifone's MusicStation, selling idiots high quality audio files which they can then pretend sound different to normal files through their shitty headphones. With the deal in place, idiots in the UK, US and Canada will be able to get access to MusicStation's 35 million track catalogue via Pono before the end of this year. Lucky idiots.

Someone pretended that Neil Young said this about it: "Omnifone shares the same passion for high resolution audio as we do at Pono. We are committed to bringing the original recording sound quality from the studio to the PonoPlayer, and Omnifone is a key partner in making this a reality".

Omnifone's co-founder Phil Sant added: "PonoMusic is the perfect partner for Omnifone to debut its high resolution audio cloud delivery capabilities. The Pono team has done an incredible job with the PonoPlayer, the attention to detail and the quality of audio engineering delivers a sound which is utterly spellbinding. What the Pono team is trying to achieve is close to our hearts".

He added: "Omnifone is providing the scalable music acquisition and delivery infrastructure but we are also working on some funky stuff such as techniques to verify the provenance of the audio and its end-to-end signal path from the studio to the listener via the cloud".

Sounds funky. Enjoy it, idiots.

Bauer and UTV to bid together for second UK-wide digital radio network
Bauer and UTV this morning confirmed that they are teaming up with broadcast services group Arqiva to bid for the previously reported second digital radio multiplex. Media regulator OfCom announced earlier this month that it was now accepting bids to operate a second digital radio network, which will operate alongside the existing national Digital One multiplex (also owned by Arqiva) and local DAB platforms.

A previous attempt to launch a second national DAB service, led by Channel 4, was aborted in 2008 and, with the number of digital-only stations very much in decline at the time, there was no immediate demand for the project to be resumed. But some people seem to think there is now enough interest in operating stations on the DAB digital network that a second national multiplex is needed.

Bauer owns national radio brands like Absolute, Magic, Kiss, Kerrang and Planet Rock as well as a plethora of local stations, while UTV operates talkSPORT and a network of local FMs, and both will broadcast services on the new DAB network if they are successful in their bid. Though other radio operators will be invited to take channels too, and interested parties are invited to contact Arqiva for information.

Confirming all this, reps from each partner in the bid issued statements this morning as follows...

Steve Holebrook, MD of Terrestrial Broadcast at Arqiva: "Radio's future is undoubtedly digital and we are delighted to be working with Bauer and UTV to bid for the second national DAB multiplex licence which will help to realise that digital future. Our consortium has the necessary credentials to deliver this new network, and if our bid is successful we expect the result to be a significant broadening of choice for radio listeners".

Paul Keenan, CEO at Bauer Media UK: "A new national DAB licence presents an exciting opportunity for listeners to discover new radio services and for us and the commercial radio industry to further extend reach and service. D2 will further accelerate digital growth in the UK".

Scott Taunton, MD of UTV Media: "Ofcom's advertisement of a new national DAB licence represents a vote of confidence for radio's continuing relevance and strength as a broadcast medium. In Arqiva and Bauer we believe we have identified the right partners for UTV to formulate a bid for this licence and we look forward to developing our plans over the coming months".

  Approved: Mina Tindle
Singer-songwriter Mina Tindle released her debut album, 'Taranta', back in 2012. On 6 Oct she's set to release the follow-up, titled 'Parades'. Following 'I Command' back in May, the second single from the album is also now available, which is only slightly confusingly called 'Taranta'.

Delivered in breezy French style (she is French, I should probably point out), both first single 'I Command' and 'Taranta' (the single) pick up from where 'Taranta' (the album) left off. The smooth edges and upped production values pull you deeper into the bi-lingual world of her music.

Tindle will perform a headline show in London at the Hoxton Bar & Kitchen on 13 Nov. So, there's a bit of a wait for both her next UK gig and the album, but the snatches of 'Parades' that are already 'out there' should keep you satiated through the coming months.

Watch the video for 'Taranta' (the single) here.
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Tupac musical to close this weekend
Don't worry Tupac, Jesus couldn't even get his musical to the starting post. So yes, Broadway's "urban rap musical" inspired by the lyrics of Tupac Shakur will close this coming weekend after just 55 performances, including the previews.

Officially opening on 19 Jun, 'Holler If Ya Hear Me' was an admirable attempt to take the jukebox musical format into new genre territories, and possibly to appeal to a new demographic at the same time.

But said demographic didn't seem that keen on a night at the theatre, and ticket sales were incredibly low from the off. And, while it didn't get a complete slating from the critics, the lukewarm reviews didn't help either.

According to reports, $8 million was pumped into the show, which was netting a weekly box office of around $200,000, five to ten times less than what most Broadway musicals bring in.

The National to close tour in London
The National have announced that the final performance of their 'Trouble Will Find Me' tour will fall on 26 Nov and take place at The O2 Arena in London. They'll be supported by those Wild Beasts. So, that's fun.

Tickets will go one sale at 9am sharp this Friday. Practice for purchasing yours by clicking this link now. Or just wait where you are for Friday.


Bonnie 'Prince' Billy announces London shows
Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, aka Will Oldham, has announced two London shows for November, which will see him taking up residency at St John's church in Hackney.

Tickets are available here.

Oldham self-released his latest album as Bonnie 'Prince' Billy, an eponymously titled affair, last year. You can check out the reasonably recently released video for a track off the album, 'Bad Man', here.


Jess Glynne announces UK tour
Bouyed by getting her debut single 'Right Here' into the top ten and playing a sold out gig at the Hoxton Bar & Kitchen, Jess Glynne has gone all out and booked a whole UK tour. Well, possibly it was all organised before all that happened, but if it was, she was keeping quiet about it.

Anyway, the Clean Bandit and Route 94 collaborator will play these dates, with tickets going on sale on Friday at 9am:

15 Oct: Sheffield, The Foundry
16 Oct: Glasgow, ABC2
17 Oct: Manchester, Club Academy
19 Oct: Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
20 Oct: Birmingham, Temple
22 Oct: Cardiff, The Globe
23 Oct: Bristol, Thekla
25 Oct: Brighton, Coalition
27 Oct: Oxford, Academy 2
28 Oct: Southampton, The Brook
29 Oct: Norwich, Waterfront
30 Oct: London, Electric Brixton


Kate Boy announce London show
CMU approved and not exactly prolific pop trio Kate Boy have announced that they will play a headline show in London on 24 Jul at The Lexington.

Tickets are available here.

It's now over a year since Kate Boy released any new music, though to be fair they have been touring quite a lot. It has been quite a while though. Like, ages. Maybe that's just the way they are though.

Oh, speaking of which, here's their last single, 'The Way We Are'. What a segue.


Sylvan Esso heading out on tour
Sylvan Esso have announced a tour of the UK and Ireland, which will follow the release of new single, 'Hey Mami', from their recently (ish) released debut album.

Here are the dates, and a stream of that very single, because we're good to you like that:

30 Sep: Green Door Store, Brighton
1 Oct: Hare And Hounds, Birmingham
2 Oct: Oslo, London
3 Oct: Luisiana, Bristol
4 Oct: Buffalo Bar, Cardiff
6 Oct: Soup Kitchen, Manchester
7 Oct: Workman's Club, Dublin
8 Oct: Black Box, Belfast
9 Oct: Nice N Sleazy, Glasgow

Fatboy Slim not digging Cowell's DJ talent telly show concept
Fatboy Slim ain't convinced by Simon Cowell's plans to create an 'X-Factor' style DJ talent contest, and he's not sure the telly format will be embraced by the dance music community either, even though, after a false start, Syco is now working with EDM powerhouse SFX on the venture.

Speaking to Digital Spy over the weekend, Fatboy said: "Simon Cowell was talking about doing a show and ... he kind of started approaching us, and we were like, 'Fuck off. No - that's a terrible idea!' That's the good thing about dance music; it grows organically through drunk people late at night coming up with stupid ideas. It's not something that can be scripted or transported into a TV studio".

Admitting that he's been approached by most of the celebrity reality shows and other telly programmes, he went on: "I get offered loads of TV shows and they're like, 'Can you perform for five minutes?' But DJing takes two hours and an audience. It's not like you can go out there and sing your latest song. Because of that, it will always remain slightly outside the mainstream. At the end of the day, it's about taking a big bunch of high people and trying to get them higher, which you can't do on TV".

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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