TODAY'S TOP STORY: Sony Music has confirmed that it has signed a deal with the Prince estate to represent some, many, hey maybe ultimately most of the late musician's recordings. And what could possibly go wrong with that? Nothing. I'm sure it will all be fine. Deals with the Prince estate never run into any bother. It's all going to be great... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Sony announces deal to represent Prince's recordings
LEGAL Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine ordered to pay $25 million to former Beats partner
LABELS & PUBLISHERS Merlin indie label members seeing rapid streaming growth, report finds
LIVE BUSINESS Young Fathers decline invitation to re-join Ruhrtriennale festival line up
Kilimanjaro owner sells stake in UK classical music promoter
EDUCATION & EVENTS Artist:Entrepreneur Day heads to Manchester with Brighter Sound
INDUSTRY PEOPLE Joe Jackson dies
GIGS & FESTIVALS Rolo Tomassi announce UK tour dates
ONE LINERS Live Nation, Manns McDade, Years & Years, more
AND FINALLY... Ed Sheeran discusses running off stage for a wee
Check out all the latest classified ads with CMU Classifieds. To advertise here email or call 020 7099 0906.
Cooking Vinyl is pleased to offer a newly refurbished office space in Acton, West London. Ideal to share with other likeminded creatives in a hot desk environment, or alternatively to rent the space as a whole, comfortably fitting 30+ desks.

For more information and to apply click here.
Check out all the latest job opportunities with CMU Jobs. To advertise your job opportunities here email or call 020 7099 0906.
AWAL serves a growing roster of emerging talent and already established independent artists from all over the world. As the AWAL community continues to grow, we’re looking for someone to help support these labels and artists.

For more information and to apply click here.
As part of Kobalt’s significant expansion of AWAL – Kobalt's recorded-music division, the Co-ordinator will support the growing global Release Management team by ensuring accurate and timely build of all AWAL Recordings releases for digital and physical distribution.

For more information and to apply click here.
Merlin is seeking an experienced and enthusiastic Member Services Manager to assist its members in optimising all aspects of their Merlin membership. The role will involve working with existing and new DSPs, as well as co-ordinating closely with other departments within Merlin.

For more information and to apply click here.

War Child has a rich, 25 year music heritage and a brilliant track record of partnering with the music industry to raise valuable funds for our work and we’re looking for a head of our Music and Events team.

For more information and to apply click here.

FMLY is looking for a passionate and highly motivated individual with a great eye for detail and superb administration skills. You will be responsible for all aspects of the booking procedures from preparing contracts and chasing information through to updating riders and technical information, as well as attending gigs and festivals.

For more information and to apply click here.

The Columbo Group is seeking a Live Music Promotions Manager to join our events team. You will be responsible for the promotion & marketing of all in-house concerts at one of our key venues, Jazz Cafe.

For more information and to apply click here.

As the streaming landscape is continuing to grow and change, AWAL is looking for a personable as well as analytical Digital Account Manager to join our Global Digital Accounts team.

For more information and to apply click here.

Republic Of Music is seeking a Digital Account Manager to manage all aspects of digital delivery of ROM digital products and to market releases to digital retailers.

For more information and to apply click here.
As Assistant Venue Manager, Operations at Islington Assembly Hall you will be one of the first points of contact for new and current business, proactively responding to enquiries and be able to negotiate rates in order to maximise profits.

For more information and to apply click here.
A management coordinator is required for this boutique artist management and music PR company. The successful applicant will have the opportunity to be involved in all aspects of assisting an artist manager in day-to-day maintenance and development of this established female music artist's career.

For more information and to apply click here.
Cooking Vinyl is looking for a new Production Manager to manage its busy UK and international manufacturing and digital delivery requirements. A minimum of one year's experience within a record label, distributor, manufacturer or DSP is required for this role.

For more information and to apply click here.
As Client Administrator, you will act as liaison between clients and the business. The successful candidate will be expected to thrive in a start-up environment, contributing ideas and solutions to improve both client relationships, and data management.

For more information and to apply click here.
The MPA Group of Companies (MPA, MCPS and PMLL) is seeking a trainee financial accountant to assist the Director of Operations with all of the finance functions across the three companies as well as providing assistance with other finance related projects.

For more information and to apply click here.

Sony announces deal to represent Prince's recordings
Sony Music has confirmed that it has signed a deal with the Prince estate to represent some, many, hey maybe ultimately most of the late musician's recordings. And what could possibly go wrong with that? Nothing. I'm sure it will all be fine. Deals with the Prince estate never run into any bother. It's all going to be great.

As you may remember, following Prince's death, his estate got busy negotiating deals with all the big music companies about representing his legacy and repertoire. Well, I say "all the big music companies". As it turned out mainly Universal, which scored three deals to respectively represent Prince's recordings, songs and merchandise business.

However, the first of those then started to untangle. The deal covered recordings Prince had released through his own label since 1995, a load of previously unreleased tracks sitting in the Prince archive, and some of the musician's most famous records, which had been originally released by Warner Music.

Prince famously fell out with Warner in the 1990s, of course, but had actually made up with the mini-major before his death in 2016. In a 2014 deal with Warner, Prince managed to reclaim some of the rights in some of the records he released between 1978 and the mid-1990s. But he also agreed to license some of those reclaimed rights back to Warner.

It turned out that that 2014 agreement was somewhat complex. Universal started to become concerned that some of the recordings it thought it was getting access to via its deal with the estate were actually still in the control of Warner. To that end it asked to see the Warner deal. The mega-major's lawyers then announced that they couldn't work out quite what rights Warner had, and therefore they didn't know what rights their client had either.

Ultimately the Universal recordings deal was cancelled and the estate started shopping that side of Prince's oeuvre around the other music companies again. A deal with Warner might have made most sense, given the continued confusion surrounding its 2014 deal. But then the mini-major may have sought to exploit that fact to reduce its upfront financial commitments. Either way, Sony has taken on the challenge of working out which Prince records are available for it to control and then getting on with controlling them.

Presumably seeking to avoid any future confusion, Sony was pretty specific as to which records it reckons this new deal covers when announcing the new arrangement yesterday.

That announcement stated that the deal gives its catalogue division Legacy Recordings, "worldwide rights beginning immediately to nineteen previously released album titles (originally released between 1995-2010). The list of album titles includes 'The Gold Experience' (1995), 'Emancipation' (1996), 'Rave Un2 The Joy Fantastic' (1999), 'The Rainbow Children' (2001) and '3121' (2006), as well as titles originally distributed by Sony including 'Musicology' (2004) and 'Planet Earth' (2007)".

Prince's latter albums, released after he had made up with Warner, and so some of which it distributed, will be part of the new Sony deal eventually. "Additional album titles from the 2014-2015 era will also be distributed with worldwide rights under the deal in the future", says the major. That, of course, will also include the musician's final two albums that Tidal had the exclusive dibs on.

It's not all about albums though, and Sony confirms that it will also be distributing some singles, b-sides, remixes, live recordings and music videos that were put out between 1995 and 2010 - though all "previously released" it clarifies, so presumably the Legacy team won't get to dive deeply into Prince's vast archive of never actually released music. Some of which has already been promised to Tidal as another exclusive, of course.

But fuck all that, what about all the hits from the 1980s? That's what we want to know about. "Starting in 2021", the official statement continues, "Sony/Legacy's distribution rights will be expanded to include twelve Prince non-soundtrack catalogue albums, featuring iconic music recorded by the artist from the 1978-1996 era for distribution in the United States".

That's what we're talking about. In 2021, it seems, Sony will get to rep the US rights Prince negotiated away from Warner in his 2014 arrangement.

"Music from this period covered under the agreement", Sony adds, "includes the highly renowned albums 'Prince' (1979), 'Dirty Mind' (1980), 'Controversy' (1981), '1999' (1982), 'Around The World In A Day' (1985), 'Sign 'O' The Times' (1987), 'Lovesexy' (1988), 'Diamonds And Pearls' (1991) and '[Love Symbol]' (1992) as well as hit singles '1999', 'Little Red Corvette', 'I Wanna Be Your Lover', 'Raspberry Beret' and much more".

So that's nice, isn't it? Hey Richard Story - President of the SME Commercial Music Group - and Troy Carter - entertainment advisor to the Prince estate - say something quickly before people start questioning whether this deal also conflicts with Warner's existing agreement and/or Prince's heirs start moaning loudly about not being consulted and not being happy with the deal.

"A true artist and visionary, Prince changed the world with his music, bringing love, joy and inspiration to millions," says Story. "Sony Music is honoured to play a part in keeping Prince's music alive and making it available for generations of lifelong listeners and future fans".

"The Sony team's enthusiasm and deep knowledge of Prince's music make them the ideal partner to release these iconic bodies of work", adds Carter. "We're looking forward to working with the heirs and Sony on giving fans what they've been waiting for - more great music from Prince".


Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine ordered to pay $25 million to former Beats partner
A jury has ruled that the Beats headphones company - now an Apple subsidiary, of course - owes a former business partner $25.2 million in unpaid royalties. It brings to an end a long running legal squabble between Beats, its founders Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine, and a business man called Steven Lamar.

No one disputes that Lamar was involved in the Beats By Dre business at the outset. Though no one can quite agree who first had the idea, back in 2006, of sticking Dre's name on the side of some mediocre headphones and then hiking up the price, with both Lamar and Dre claiming they came up with that trick. But Lamar was definitely involved in pulling together the people who first put that plan into action.

However, that happy alliance soon fell apart and Lamar parted company with Dre and Iovine. Although not without an agreement that said that he and his other business partners would share in a 4% royalty on future sales of Beats headphones, in return for the work they'd done to get the business started.

The big dispute which was back in court this month was over quite what the royalty commitment in that 2007 contract related to. Which is to say was Lamar just due a royalty on the specific headphone product he contributed to, or on subsequent evolutions of that product as well? Lamar reckoned the latter and said he was due $100 million. And given Dre and Iovine later sold the Beats business to Apple for $3 billion, he suggested that that wasn't too big an ask.

Having bounced around various courts, the dispute finally arrived in the LA Superior Court earlier this month where a jury was charged with the task of working out what that 2007 agreement said. In the end they decided that the royalty commitment related to three sets of Beats headphones, somewhat less than Lamar had hoped, but still enough to conclude that he was due another $25 million.

Although that's not quite the payday Lamar had hoped for, his legal reps nevertheless welcomed yesterday's ruling. Speaking outside the court, lawyer Stephen E Morrissey said: "The jury really validated our theory of the case, that Mr Lamar was involved in the founding of Beats. It's not everything we were asking for, but we're happy".


Merlin indie label members seeing rapid streaming growth, report finds
As it reaches its tenth anniversary, indie label repping digital rights agency Merlin has published a report examining the performance of its members' recording catalogues in the streaming market.

According to the organisation's findings, independent music is performing strongly with all important premium streaming subscribers. Analysis of half a trillion streams over a four year period by research firm Enders found that independent music enjoys a 25% higher market share on paid streaming accounts versus free.

Given streaming revenues overall continue to grow - and indie labels retain a strong share of premium subscriber consumption - ever increasing monies are flowing through Merlin to its members. The group says that it is has distributed half a billion dollars in the last twelve months, whereas it took nine years for the organisation to generate its first billion dollars. Income has increased twelvefold since 2012.

A total of 68% of Merlin members now report that the majority of their digital income comes from streaming - up from 20% in 2014. The shift to streaming has also resulted in labels generating income from an ever increasing number of markets worldwide, with growth particularly strong in Latin America and Asia. Nearly half of the indie labels surveyed for the report said that the majority of their digital revenues are now non-domestic .

Merlin CEO Charles Caldas adds: "The advent of music streaming has transformed how independent labels operate, and how digital services perceive the value of our rights. Where once we were fragmented, we now act in unison. Where we were treated inequitably, we sit at the head of licensing discussions. Indies are not only thriving in the new market, we are leading it".

"This situation hasn't occurred by accident and Merlin has, I believe, played a significant role in our progress", he goes on. "I certainly hope this impact report provides at least some flavour of what we've achieved in the past decade and a trajectory of where we're heading".

As for how the streaming market in general and Merlin's operations in particular have evolved over the last decade, he concludes: "Had you asked any of our founding board members in 2008 whether they'd anticipate Merlin distributing over $500 million per year, or that we'd open new global markets in Latin America, Asia and China, I suspect they'd have laughed you out of the room. But that's where we are, and what we're building upon. And most exciting of all, it feels like we're only getting started".

Read the full report here. And watch a video here.


Young Fathers decline invitation to re-join Ruhrtriennale festival line up
Young Fathers have turned down an invitation to re-join the line up of Germany's Ruhrtriennale festival.

The hip hop trio were dropped from the event's bill because of their support for the pro-Palestine 'Boycott, Divestment And Sanctions' movement. BDS is a campaigning group that says it is working "to end international support for Israel's oppression of Palestinians and pressure Israel to comply with international law".

Discussing that decision last week, the festival's Artistic Director Stefanie Carp said: "I again wish to stress that, in my view, criticism of the current policy of the government of the State of Israel is not automatically anti-Semitic". However, she added, "I personally reject boycott in connection with Israel, but also in other contexts [too], and especially in the field of art. Artists do not represent nations or ideological discourses".

That said, and despite Young Fathers refusing to distance themselves from BDS, Carp added that she now wanted the band to play her event again. She said: "I wish to invite the Young Fathers again to the concert in Bochum on 18 Aug 2018, although I do not share their attitude to the BDS".

She went on: "I believe that we need to allow the different perspectives and narratives, because this openness is the dramaturgic credo of our programme. I therefore have to defend the freedom of the arts, and do not, under any circumstances, even indirectly, wish to exercise censorship".

However, a rep for the festival has now told The Guardian that the band have turned down the new invitation and so will remain off the line up.


Kilimanjaro owner sells stake in UK classical music promoter
German music company DEAG - which also has a controlling stake in UK tour promoter Kilimanjaro - has announced a double sided deal with Sony Music.

First, it is buying the major out of an existing joint venture called DEAG Classics. But secondly, DEAG Classics will then sell back to Sony its shares in UK-based classical music promoter Raymond Gubbay Limited. However, says the company, this won't affect any joint projects being undertaken by Raymond Gubbay and the aforementioned Kilimanjaro. So now you know.

Confirming the sale of its stake in Raymond Gubbay Limited, DEAG's Detlef Kornett said earlier this week: "DEAG and I am grateful for the integrity, loyalty and the tremendous success we have experienced in partnering with RGL Ltd, in particular with its senior management Debra Eagers, Anthony Findlay and Jonathan Marks and their staff".

He went on: "We have seen through a fundamental change to the business of RGL while profitability increased in our time and the transaction allows RGL to prosper and at the same time the DEAG Classics business to continue to thrive, also in the UK".

Meanwhile the boss of Kilimanjaro, Stuart Galbraith, said his business would continue to enjoy the opportunity to work with other divisions of DEAG, but also with Raymond Gubbay Limited, despite it no longer being part of the group. "There are numerous opportunities for us to grow our business which we will be able to continue to exploit", he added.


Artist:Entrepreneur Day heads to Manchester with Brighter Sound
The date has been set for the next edition of the Artist:Entrepreneur Day, the artist-to-artist education programme from the Featured Artists Coalition and CMU:DIY. This time FAC and CMU are teaming up with Brighter Sound to bring the A:E experience to Manchester, at Band On The Wall on Friday 20 July.

The A:E Day is a practical guide for early-career artists, explaining how they can grow a business around their music. Each edition is led by three of FAC's 'advocate artists' - this time Roxanne De Bastion, ShaoDow and Femme - who open up their own artist businesses and describe their routes to success. The artists also question a range of industry experts, while CMU's Chris Cooke is on hand to present A:E Guides on revenues, rights, gigging, marketing and business partners.

FAC CEO Lucie Caswell says: "The feedback from our recent London A:E Day was overwhelmingly great, so it is really exciting to be announcing our next edition in Manchester already. We are touring this programme all around the country over the next year, empowering young artists as we go. We are really looking forward to being in Manchester and sharing our knowledge with the city's talented artist community, thanks to our partnership with Brighter Sound".

Brighter Sound Head Of Programmes Kate Lowes adds: "It's more important than ever for artists to take control of their own businesses. Part of our role is to make sure the young and emerging talent we work with has the information they need to be able to do just that. It's great to team up with the Featured Artists Coalition and CMU:DIY to make that happen artist to artist, allowing artist entrepreneurs to learn from their contemporaries".

Tickets for the day will be on sale soon at


Joe Jackson dies
Joe Jackson, father and former manager of Michael and Janet Jackson, and the Jackson Five, has died. He was 89.

In a statement confirming his passing, co-executors of the Michael Jackson estate, John Branca and John McClain, said: "We are deeply saddened by Mr Jackson's passing and extend our heartfelt condolences to [his wife] Mrs Katherine Jackson and the family. Joe was a strong man who acknowledged his own imperfections and heroically delivered his sons and daughters from the steel mills of Gary, Indiana to worldwide pop superstardom".

The father of eleven children, Jackson was recently reported to have been diagnosed with terminal cancer. Until as recently as last week, he was refusing to allow his family to visit him, although he did eventually agree to see them.

There was also some confusion last week when a tweet appeared on Jackson's Twitter account appearing to say goodbye, reading: "I have seen more sunsets than I have left to see. The sun rises when the time comes and whether you like it or not the sun sets when the time comes".

However, his granddaughter Paris Jackson stated that, while it was "a beautiful tweet", there was "no possible way" Jackson Senior had sent it, as she had been with him at the time it was posted.

Joe Jackson is credited with driving the early success of his musical children as their manager. But those children also spoke of an angry and violent father. Michael in particular recalled being regularly beaten, as well as being bullied by his father for his "fat nose".

Michael fired his father as his manager in 1979. In an interview in 1993, he told Oprah Winfrey that he had been so frightened of Jackson Senior as a child that he would sometimes vomit when he saw him. Although he also said in the same interview that he forgave him. In an interview shortly before his own death in 2009, he said that his father had become a better person as he aged, and was a good grandfather.


Approved: Moonoversun
Following the release of 'Flux' through Art Is Hard's badge-based Pin Pal Club, Moonoversun emerged with their debut single proper - 'Girls/Boys' - in March. Now they're back with 'Friendz', further establishing their carefully furrowed position in pop.

"Our music is a multimedia explosion", say the duo. "Our visual aesthetic is just as important to us as the music itself - we want to represent ourselves within both elements".

As for the new single, they go on: "This song is about fighting back against all the fake bitches in the world, never let anyone drag you down. You have to surround yourself with positivity and real friends otherwise what's the point?"

You can catch them live at The Others in Stoke Newington this Friday, as part of the Clubhouse night. Free tickets available here.

Listen to 'Friendz' here.

Stay up to date with all of the artists featured in the CMU Approved column by subscribing to our Spotify playlist.


Rolo Tomassi announce UK tour dates
Rolo Tomassi have announced that they will tour the UK in October and November this year.

"We're delighted to announce a new selection of headline dates in celebration of our new album 'Time Will Die And Love Will Bury It'", say the band. "This will be our first time visiting some of these cities in a number of years and also includes our biggest ever headline show at the Scala in London".

Tickets go on sale tomorrow. Here are the dates:

30 Oct: Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
31 Oct: Bournemouth, The Anvil
1 Nov: Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach
2 Nov: Norwich, Waterfront
9 Nov: London, The Scala


Live Nation, Manns McDade, Years & Years, more

Other notable announcements and developments today...

• Get a daily news summary, our latest job ads and more via our Messenger bot. Click here to get started.

• Live Nation has taken a majority stake in US promoter Red Mountain Entertainment. The company will become a subsidiary of Live Nation, but continue to operate from its offices in Alabama. "Terrific", says Live Nation's Bob Roux.

• Music publisher and composer management firm Manners McDade has appointed Harriet Moss as its new Managing Director. "I never thought I would find someone who I could trust so implicitly with my business", says company founder Catherine Manners. "But Harriet Moss is an extraordinary young woman and I'm incredibly proud of her".

• Years & Years have released new single 'All For You'. Their new album, 'Palo Alto', is out next week.

• Migos have released the video for 'Narcos'.

• Charli XCX has released the video for '5 In The Morning'.

• Mr Twin Sister have released new single 'Jaipur'.

• Lucianblomkamp has released a live version of new single 'Endless'.

• J-pop trio Perfume will release their seventh album, 'Future Pop', on 15 Aug. Here's recent single, 'Mugenmirai'.

• Dena has released new single 'So Wrong', featuring Sean Nicholas Savage. She's also announced that her new album, 'If It's Written', will be out on 14 Sep.

• US Girls will play the Islington Assembly Hall in London on 22 Nov. Tickets go on sale tomorrow.

• Check out our weekly Spotify playlist of new music featured in the CMU Daily - updated every Friday.


Ed Sheeran discusses running off stage for a wee
Ed Sheeran has discussed what it's like to try to hold in a wee in front of tens of thousands of people. Not that much fun, it turns out. Which is why he eventually cracked and twice ran off stage to visit the toilet when performing in Cardiff last weekend.

Speaking to Big Narstie on the rapper's new Channel 4 show, which will air tomorrow night, Sheeran explains: "I've never done that before. You know, when you gotta go, you gotta go". He adds that he reckoned interrupting the show was "far better than a picture in the paper the next day", by which he presumably means a picture of him performing in damp trousers.

On the thought process he went through before deciding he'd better just go, he says: "I was there, I was playing, I was singing - but it was getting worse and worse and worse; you know when you start sweating?" The problem is, because I play the show solo, I can't just be like 'hey band, start playing!' So I literally had to put the guitar down and be like, 'talk among yourselves'. Usually, the adrenaline and all the water you drink, you sweat out. But I drank so much water before the show".

"I read that the next day someone said, 'I'm disappointed'", he notes, despite his toilet breaks being super speedy and - as he said - as a totally solo performing act there wasn't really any other option. "I mean, I still played the whole show!"


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.
CMU supports the music community by providing news, business intelligence, training and education.

CMU Daily covers all the latest news and developments direct by email.

Setlist is a weekly podcast dissecting the biggest music business stories.

CMU Premium gives you access to the weekly CMU Digest and CMU Trends.

CMU Insights provides training and consultancy for music companies.

CMU:DIY provides workshops and resources for future music talent.

© UnLimited Media, a division of 3CM Enterprises Ltd

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

Send press releases to

Email advertising queries to

Email training and consultancy queries to

You can read our Privacy & Data Policy here |