TODAY'S TOP STORY: Nearly a quarter of 194 CDs ordered by the Recording Industry Association Of America off of Amazon turned out to be counterfeit discs according to a Wall Street Journal report on a new piracy challenge for the music business: the sale of bootleg CDs by third parties through legitimate platforms like Amazon. As previously reported, America's indie label trade group A2IM... [READ MORE]
TODAY'S APPROVED: Ayelle began releasing music in 2014 with debut EP 'What You Made', before immediately entering something of a hiatus in which she developed the "bittersweet R&B" sound that purveys the new music she has released over the course of this year. Now she's back with one of her strongest songs to date, 'No Harm'. Lyrically, she doesn't pull any punches, writing... [READ MORE]
CMU PODCAST: CMU's Andy Malt and Chris Cooke review key events in music and the music business from the last week, including the Music Venue Trust's open letter calling for an end to PRS For Music's minimum fee for live shows, the latest developments in virtual reality for music, and Justin Bieber's campaign against screaming. The CMU Podcast is sponsored by 7digital. [READ MORE]
CMU TRENDS: Following the recent lawsuit against Bob Geldof over who owns the copyright in 'I Don't Like Mondays', we review what copyright law says about ownership, co-ownership and how song rights are split between collaborators, and whether a writer can really make a new claim 37 years after a record is released. CMU Trends articles are available to premium subscribers... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Almost 25% of CDs on Amazon could be counterfeit
LEGAL Alien Ant Farm guitarist pleads guilty to assault in Chester
Bieber avoids deposition and possible arrest by settling paparazzo lawsuit
Undercover cops to be identified in Fabric appeal
LIVE BUSINESS SFX needs more time to finalise post-bankruptcy plan
Rob Hallett on how Brexit is affecting the live industry: "It's very scary times"
MU plans new protests over pre-recorded music in 'Dirty Dancing' show
AWARDS AIF awards dished out in Cardiff
ONE LINERS Ditto, Pusha T, The Weeknd, more
AND FINALLY... Sony Music Japan apologises after Keyakizaka46 perform in Nazi-like uniforms
Click JUMP to skip direct to a section of this email or ONLINE to read and share stories on the CMU website (JUMP option may not work in all email readers). For regular updates from Team CMU follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Tumblr.
MelodyVR is set to disrupt the music industry by connecting fans with the artists they love via a brand new virtual reality music platform. The company has been working with over 400 renowned artists across a variety of music genres over the past two years, to create the world’s largest library of virtual reality music content.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Proper Music Distribution Ltd is now the largest truly independent, full service distributor of music on all formats in the UK. We are currently seeking a Digital Content Assistant to work in our Digital Department.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Beggars Music, the publishing arm of Beggars Group, are looking to expand their London office. The company is seeking a junior member of staff who will look after general administrative tasks and manage our social media channels.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
The Bestival Group are expanding their sponsorship department and recruiting a Partnerships Manager/Account Director to join the existing team. The individual will take a key sales role for specific festivals and take full ownership of clients thereafter ensuring delivery of contractual obligations.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
The Ibiza Rocks Group are looking for a bright new addition to join their exciting crop of talent in a dynamic and forward thinking Marketing and Event Programming department. Reporting to the Director of Talent & Programming and working right across the complete Ibiza Rocks large portfolio of events, this position requires experience and understanding in booking, marketing and promoting of a diverse range of events and concepts.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Record/publishing/management company seeks Sync Manager. A confident, imaginative person is needed to drive sync revenue from material ranging from catalogue of classic 60s/70s/80s rock and pop to contemporary electronic and alternative artists.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Reporting to the International Liaison Manager, the Royalties Data Analyst will be an essential member of a rapidly growing, target driven royalty distributions and analysis team. This role will offer an opportunity to be instrumental in improving the existing royalty tracking and analysis process to provide AMRA’s clients with the most transparent and accurate reporting in the music industry.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
AEI Media is looking for an experienced Group Financial Controller to undertake all aspects of financial management, including corporate accounting, regulatory and financial reporting, budget and forecasts preparation, as well as development of internal control policies and procedures. There are currently six trading companies within the group.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
An exciting opportunity has arisen and we are looking for someone with solid office and admin experience with a passion for live music. The successful applicant will be responsible for assisting the Half Moon’s Music Manager with the entertainment schedule and venue operations.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Proper Records is an independent label within the Proper Music Group of companies that include, Proper Music Distribution Ltd and We are now seeking a Label Administrator to assist with our ever growing roster of artists that already includes Richard Thompson, Bill Wyman, Joan Baez, Nick Lowe, The Waterboys, Bonnie Raitt and Loudon Wainwright III.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Outpost currently have a vacancy for an online PR account executive with a minimum of one year’s experience. Are you hardworking, motivated and intelligent with first-class writing skills and computer literate? One that relishes looking after key online projects, has an outstanding knowledge of cutting edge music and possesses excellent contacts?

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
Working across a wide range of high profile blue chip clients in the home entertainment, FMCG and music markets, the creative team covers all areas of creative design, from packaging for all musical formats as well as POS and Shopper journeys to ATL,TTL, BTL, experiential and brand strategy. The creative team is split into four design pillars; Concept; Design; Creative Artwork; Structural Design.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
CMU Jobs is a proven way to recruit the best music business talent for roles across the industry at all levels, from graduate to senior management. To book an ad contact Sam on 020 7099 9060 or email
A guide to upcoming events from and involving CMU, including seminars, masterclasses and conference sessions from CMU Insights and workshops from CMU:DIY, plus other events where CMU journalists are speaking or moderating.
7 Nov 2016 CMU Insights Seminar: Building A Fanbase - Social Media Tools
14 Nov 2016 CMU Insights Seminar: Building A Fanbase - Music Media
21 Nov 2016 CMU Insights Masterclass: Digital Deals, Dollars And Trends – Explained!
21 Nov 2016 CMU Insights Seminar: Building A Fan Orientated Business

Almost 25% of CDs on Amazon could be counterfeit
Nearly a quarter of 194 CDs ordered by the Recording Industry Association Of America off of Amazon turned out to be counterfeit discs according to a Wall Street Journal report on a new piracy challenge for the music business: the sale of bootleg CDs by third parties through legitimate platforms like Amazon.

As previously reported, America's indie label trade group A2IM recently put out a message to its members alerting them to this new trend. Bootleg CDs are nothing new of course, but by selling them via Amazon, where they get listed alongside the official product as supplied by the record companies, customers will assume they are getting albums from legitimate sources.

Some of the bootleggers even use Amazon's fulfilment services, so that their counterfeit disks arrive in the web giant's packaging. The quality of the bootleg versions is often sufficiently good that even someone at the label would struggle to tell the difference (though bootlegs from China are generally a better quality than those that originate in Russia, says the RIAA). That means the customer probably won't know that they got a counterfeit disc, even though the label and artist have been deprived of income.

The Journal says that the sale of counterfeit CDs online from Chinese and Russian sources into key markets has increased in the last eighteen months, meaning that while physical formats are in decline anyway, consumer demand might actually be declining slower than the revenues that the labels receive suggest.

A2IM's recent blog post on the issue said that the counterfeiters usually get their CDs on the market within a couple of weeks of the official release, and then offer them a few cents cheaper than the official product. It also suggested that, because of the way Amazon's fulfilment centres work, official and counterfeit versions of the same albums could get mixed up at the web firm's distribution centres.

When the RIAA decided to stage a small investigation into the problem, it ordered 194 CDs via Amazon and found that 44 were counterfeits, of which eighteen were fulfilled by Amazon itself. The RIAA's test also suggested that greatest hits albums were more likely to be faked, with 28 of the 36 hits albums it ordered turning out to be bootlegs.

The Journal quotes RIAA anti-piracy man Brad Buckles as saying that "Amazon should not be playing host to illegal items that would normally be found on the black market", though he conceded that the company had expressed a desire to tackle the problem.

An Amazon spokesperson, meanwhile, said the company had "zero tolerance for the sale of counterfeits" and that it was "working closely with labels and distributors to identify offenders, and remove fraudulent items from our catalogue. We are also taking action and aggressively pursuing bad actors".

Not that Amazon will be the only platform via which this is happening, though in many key markets for the record industry it is likely to be the biggest.

Alien Ant Farm guitarist pleads guilty to assault in Chester
Alien Ant Farm guitarist Terry Corso has pleaded guilty to assaulting a fan at a gig in Chester last month.

According to the Chester Standard, the incident happened at the Live Rooms in Chester last week, on 26 Oct, while the band were performing there. The court heard that Corso had punched Newton after something was thrown at him, which he believed to be urine. This having already happened once before on the current UK tour, he was primed to react to another such attack.

"Two days before in Preston someone threw urine at the singer [Dryden Mitchell] and [the band] all stormed off stage", explained Corso's lawyer Stephen Ferns. "Then on the 26th in Chester, Terry Corso had something thrown at him which he assumed was urine. He felt angry at that, so he confronted the fan and ended up hitting him once. He regrets his actions and says he never should have jumped off the stage".

Are people really buying Alien Ant Farm tickets just to throw piss at them? They cost more than you might think, you know. You won't get much change out of twenty quid.

Anyway, Corso was given a twelve month conditional discharge, and ordered to pay costs, compensation and a victim surcharge totalling £205. That sentence means that he will be able to enter the UK again in the future and, more importantly, finish the band's current UK tour.

You can catch Alien Ant Farm tonight in Barnstable. Hopefully it will be free of piss and punches, but you never really know in Barnstable, do you?


Bieber avoids deposition and possible arrest by settling paparazzo lawsuit
Don't worry people, Justin Bieber has settled that outstanding paparazzo lawsuit, which means he won't have to return to the US for a deposition, which means he can fully focus his energies on that ongoing project to silence the pop fans of Europe.

As previously reported, last month a judge in Florida ordered the Biebster to sit down and give a deposition within 30 days or face the prospect of being arrested and brought to court. The judge wanted the singer to answer questions under oath about a run in he had with paparazzo Manuel Muñoz in Miami two years ago. The snapper had accused one of Bieber's bodyguards of beating him up and taking his camera's memory card, and was suing the popstar for damages.

Muñoz's lawyer, Mark DiCowden, said that Bieber had both ignored and refused previous requests to attend a deposition, which is why he turned to the judge to try and force the singer into showing up to answer some questions. But, with those 30 days nearly up, DiCowden this week announced that the legal dispute between his client and the singer had now been resolved.

Terms of the settlement are confidential. And even if Bieber did decide to reveal them, his fans would be too busy screaming to notice.


Undercover cops to be identified in Fabric appeal
Legal representatives for Fabric have urged Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court to ensure its appeal against Islington Council's decision to revoke its licence takes place this month, because with the London club currently closed pending that appeal, any delay would be "disastrous". Lawyer Philip Kolvin said that if the appeal proceedings didn't get underway soon "there won't be a club to represent".

As previously reported, Islington Council revoked Fabric's licence in September following two drug-related deaths at or near the venue. The decision has been widely criticised, not least because Fabric has a particularly good reputation for its anti-drug policies, and has been commended in the past by both a judge and the police. The club announced its intent to appeal the licensing decision almost immediately and began a fund-raising campaign to cover the legal costs of pursuing such a thing.

A preliminary hearing took place at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court last week and, according to the Islington Tribune, various issues were discussed, including what exactly the judge considering the case should focus on, what the timelines of the appeal should be, and whether the identity of two undercover police officers whose report played a big role in the Council's decision making should be revealed.

On the latter point, the judge decided that the two officers should be named in court, and should give testimony about their undercover operation, albeit via video link. The Metropolitan Police argued that revealing the identity of the offices might compromise their safety, but the judge said that given the "significant public interest" in the outcome of Fabric's appeal it would be wrong to keep the names of two crucial witnesses secret.

Kolvin then said that what the judge should be considering in this case is whether or not Fabric would be a safe venue if it re-opened. He said he didn't plan to go into any great detail about the club's history, noting that court ruling just last year when a judge described the venue's drugs policies as "a beacon of best practice". The legal man said that he would instead outline how Fabric intends to operate if and when it re-opens, adding that there were plans to introduce ID scanners and open new entrances to the venue.

The legal rep for Islington Council, Ranjit Bhose, said he wanted to spend more time considering past events, noting the 53 conditions on Fabric's previous licence, and arguing that "the problem was non-compliance ... and management not taking them sufficiently seriously".

The judge has set 28 Nov to 1 Dec as the dates for the Fabric appeal hearing.

SFX needs more time to finalise post-bankruptcy plan
The bankruptcy of dance music firm SFX continues to rumble on, the plan still being to have a nice and nimble privately-owned EDM festivals business with minimal debts at the end of it all.

This week the company filed a new motion with the bankruptcy courts in the US seeking to extend "the exclusive period during which the company can file a chapter 11 plan and solicit acceptances thereof". A final court hearing on those plans was scheduled for next week. But the firm is now proposing a 30 Dec deadline to have a final plan in place and a 28 Feb target date for getting those "acceptances thereof". Basically they need more time than had originally been provided by the court.

Says SFX's motion to the court: "The debtors have worked with and will continue to work with the DIP lenders, US trustee, the committee, and creditors in these chapter 11 cases on resolving open issues with plan confirmation. Allowing the exclusive periods to terminate before the debtors are able to confirm the plan would defeat the purpose of section 1121 of the Bankruptcy Code - to afford the debtors a meaningful and reasonable opportunity to propose and confirm a consensual plan of reorganisation".

So there you go. The judge is yet to respond. As previously reported, a request by shareholders in the pre-bankruptcy SFX to participate in the restructuring talks was recently rejected by the courts. Meanwhile, it's thought that post-bankruptcy the new SFX could return to court to fight its founder Robert FX Sillerman.


Rob Hallett on how Brexit is affecting the live industry: "It's very scary times"
Prior to the daft EU Referendum vote back in the summer, there were warnings that leaving the European Union could have dire consequences for British musicians trying to tour on the continent. But there were dire warnings about everything, weren't there? Four months later, we haven't even left the EU and things are already looking rough for those putting on gigs, according to industry veteran Rob Hallett.

"With the pound against the dollar the lowest it's been since 1985, to bring American acts over is really tough. $50,000 now costs me 20% more than it cost me before [the vote on] 23 Jun", he tells Billboard in a new interview. "For English acts touring America and Europe, one could argue there are some advantages because the dollars and euros they are bringing back are worth more. But if they are getting tour support and are based on a pound economy, I doubt whether that will make up for the extra costs of hotels or services that they need to pay with sterling".

"It's very scary times", he continues. "Is Brexit is a tsunami that's flowing through our economy that will soon end and we'll see regrowth? Will the weakened dollar expand into greater long-term export business and grow the economy that way? Who knows? It's interesting times for us all".

As for the other big hot potato in live music at the moment, Hallett doesn't believe that secondary ticketing is quite the problem it's made out to be. He's putting another worry higher up the worry list. "Getting record companies, promoters and agents to work together to grow new talent for the future [is the most pressing issue]", he says.

"A lot of people say secondary ticketing, but we have got to get acts to sell the fucking [primary] tickets before secondary tickets become valuable. How many tickets remained unsold this summer? How much was lost in festivals this summer due to lack of content and the same old tired acts going around doing the same old festivals?"

He adds: "Millions of pounds are dropped in this country alone. On a pan-European basis it's tens of millions. And everyone is going: 'Secondary ticketing [is the biggest issue] because someone made a fiver out of me'. It is important, yes. It's wrong, yes. But I think technology will eventually stifle it anyway with new forms of mobile ticketing. The main thing as an industry is that we've got to stop throwing so much money down the toilet".

Read Hallett's full interview here. And if you haven't found all that depressing enough, Eamonn Forde has just written an article for The Guardian about the Brexit-style shit sauce the music industry is wading into.


MU plans new protests over pre-recorded music in Dirty Dancing show
The Musicians' Union is planning more demonstrations outside of upcoming performances of the 'Dirty Dancing' live show when it arrives in Stoke-on-Trent and Wolverhampton later this month. The organisation says that the current incarnation of the production features more recorded and less live music than before, even though ticket prices remain pretty much the same.

The MU doesn't like it when theatre shows of this kind use pre-recorded rather than live music, and has already been protesting outside previous performances of the 'Dirty Dancing' UK tour.

Says the MU: "An unauthorised recording, made outside of the UK, is being used in this show instead of the live band of ten or eight musicians used in previous productions. This show features only five actor-musicians and, whilst there is some live music, the majority of what is heard 'out front' is a pre-recorded soundtrack".

It adds: "This is not clear to the audience, who might expect the music in a theatre production to be played live. Despite this scaled-back production, ticket prices remain comparable with all previous tours of 'Dirty Dancing'. The MU believes that live theatre should be just that: live".

Though IQ notes that one of the show's producers, Paul Elliott, has previously criticised the MU's position on his production, telling the BBC that he can't see the problem with using a "fully-licensed backing track from Italy in the UK", before adding that: "Many other shows have used tracks on tour - many without employing any live musicians - without their producers suffering any of the current actions of the Musicians' Union towards 'Dirty Dancing'".

  Approved: Ayelle
Ayelle began releasing music in 2014 with debut EP 'What You Made', before immediately entering something of a hiatus in which she developed the "bittersweet R&B" sound that purveys the new music she has released over the course of this year. Now she's back with one of her strongest songs to date, 'No Harm'.

Lyrically, she doesn't pull any punches, writing confrontationally about misogyny. Previous single 'Machine' "is about women's role as sex objects within the patriarchy and our institutionalised servitude to the male gaze", while another, 'Reclaim', is "about living in the shadow of a man, where his needs take centre stage and you morph into the accommodating girlfriend".

Of 'No Harm', she says: "It's about trying to understand the reasoning and frame of mind of three different rapists, who probably don't understand that they are rapists. I also had the Brock Turner case at the back of my mind when I wrote this, and how he managed to shift the blame of his actions, seemingly convincing himself that he wasn't at fault even after being convicted".

Listen to 'No Harm' here.

Stay up to date with all of the artists featured in the CMU Approved column in 2016 by subscribing to our Spotify playlist.
CLICK HERE to read and share online

AIF awards dished out in Cardiff
So, the Association Of Independent Festivals' Festival Congress is ongoing in Cardiff right now as we speak, and last night that included the event's annual awards bash, hosted by music lawyer Ben Challis (of Glastonbury Festival legalities fame), because these indie festival types are so likely to slander someone in their acceptance speeches legal representation needs to be constantly on hand. That and he's an accomplished awards ceremony host and a lot cheaper than Dara Ó Briain. I assume.

But what about the winners? Were there any winners? Yes, there were winners. Imagine an awards event where no one won anything. "Sorry everybody, but we gave everything rigorous consideration, and it turns out none of you were up to scratch this year". Actually, that would be a great awards ceremony. Quick, let's set up that awards ceremony. But no, at this awards event there were winners. And the winning went like this...

New Festival On The Block (No More Than Three Editions): Bluedot

Unique Festival Arena: Deer Shed Festival's Film Production Big Top

Live Act Of The Year: Spring King

Mind Blowing Spectacle: Brian Eno's Light Installation at Bluedot, Jodrell Bank.

Best Smart Marketing Campaign: End Of The Road's Line-Up announcement video

Festival Journalist Of The Year: David Hillier (freelancer for The Guardian, Vice etc)

Act Of Independence: MAST drugs testing piloted at UK festivals

Festival Caterer Most Likely To End Up On Instagram: The Cheese Truck

The Backstage Award: Artist liaison at Blissfields

Unsung Hero: Penny Mellor, a health, safety and welfare expert at festivals.

Ditto Music, Pusha T, The Weeknd, more

Other notable announcements and developments today...

• Digital distributor Ditto Music has opened a new office in Sweden. "The opening of Ditto's Stockholm office is very exciting and shows again that we are really committed to developing successful careers for all our artists", says Ditto CEO Matt Parsons.

• Pusha T has released a video supporting proposed legislation to legalise marijuana in California. "I'm not a California voter, but I know when good legislation passes in the biggest state, other states follow", he says.

• The Weeknd is doing a thing with H&M.

• Yelawolf has released the video for new single 'Shadow', which features vocals from Joshua Hedley.

• Skepta has released two new tracks, solo work 'No Security' and a Section Boyz collaboration, 'Worst'.

• Tove Lo has released new short film 'Fairy Dust', featuring five songs from her new album, 'Lady Wood'. She also just announced two live shows in Manchester and London next March.

• Lady Leshurr has released part six of her 'Queen's Speech' series of tracks.

• Teleman have released a drone-tastic video for new single 'English Architecture'.

• Pixie Geldof has released the video for new single 'Woman Go Wild'. She'll headline a show at Birthdays in Dalston on 9 Nov.

• So Below has released a brand new single, 'Hard'. The track was co-produced by Justin Bieber collaborator Leroy Clampitt and Aaron Short of The Naked And Famous.

• Slow Riot have released the video for upcoming new single 'Absent Dreams'.

• Swans have just announced two UK shows next year. They will play The Roundhouse in London on 27 May, followed by the Victoria Warehouse in Manchester on 28 May.

Sony Music Japan apologises after Keyakizaka46 perform in Nazi-like uniforms
Sony Music Japan has apologised after girl group Keyakizaka46 - an offshoot of AKB48 - performed a Halloween show dressed in outfits resembling Nazi uniforms.

In a statement, the record label blamed a "lack of understanding", saying: "We express our heartfelt apology for causing offence. We take the incident seriously and will make efforts to prevent a reoccurrence of a similar incident in the future".

The band's producer Yasushi Akimoto also apologised for the "mismanagement" in a statement on the band's website.

The apologies were published after Jewish human rights organisation the Simon Wiesenthal Center highlighted the offensive stagewear. A representative of the group, Rabbi Abraham Cooper, said in a statement: "We are calling on Sony Music and the group's producer, Yasushi Akimoto, to apologise for this inappropriate and deeply offensive presentation. Watching young teens on the stage and in the audience dancing in Nazi-style uniforms causes great distress to the victims of the Nazi genocide".

"This is a time when the Simon Wiesenthal Center is struggling against increased anti-Semitic attacks and burgeoning online hate around the world", he continued. "Even if there was no harm intended by the group, that performance cheapens the memory of victims of the Nazis and sends the wrong message to young people in Germany and other countries where neo-Nazi sentiment is on the rise. We expect better from an international brand like Sony which has caused embarrassment to Japan".

This is not the first complaint the Simon Weisenthal Center has made to Sony Music. In 2011, it expressed "shock and dismay" at outfits resembling Nazi uniforms worn by members of rock band Kishidan. The group's management company, Sony Music Artists, said at the time that the costumes were "not meant to carry any ideological meaning whatsoever" but apologised for "the distress they have caused".

ANDY MALT | Editor
Andy heads up the team, overseeing the CMU bulletins and website, coordinating features and interviews, reporting on artist and business stories, and contributing to the CMU Approved column.
Email (except press releases, see below)
CHRIS COOKE | MD & Business Editor
Chris provides music business coverage and analysis. Chris also leads the CMU Insights training and consultancy business and education programme CMU:DIY, and heads up CMU publisher 3CM UnLimited.
Email (except press releases, see below)
SAM TAYLOR | Commercial Manager & Insights Associate
Sam oversees the commercial side of the CMU media, leading on sales and sponsorship, and advising on CMU Insights training courses and events.
Email or call 020 7099 9060
CARO MOSES | Co-Publisher
Caro helps oversee the CMU media, while as a Director of 3CM UnLimited she heads up the company's other two titles ThisWeek London and ThreeWeeks Edinburgh, and supports other parts of the business.
Send ALL press releases to - this is checked daily by the whole editorial team meaning your release will definitely get to the right person.

For details of the training and consultancy services offered by CMU Insights click here - Andy and Chris are also available to provide music business comment, just email them direct.

To promote your company or advertise jobs or services to the entire UK music industry via the CMU bulletin or website contact Sam on 020 7099 9060 or email
© UnLimited Media, a division of 3CM Enterprises Ltd

CMU, UnLimited Media, Kemp House, 152 City Road, London EC1V 2NX
t: 020 7099 9050 (editorial) 020 7099 9060 (sales) |