|WEDNESDAY 16 OCTOBER 2019||COMPLETEMUSICUPDATE.COM|
|TODAY'S TOP STORY: Chuck D has sued his publisher Reach Global Music, accusing the firm of having falsely registered works with the US Copyright Office as being owned by a joint venture company rather than the rapper in his own right... [READ MORE]|
Chuck D files lawsuit in music publisher dispute
TMZ reported back in August that the Public Enemy founder was going legal in a dispute with his long time music publishing partner. A lawsuit was filed with Californian courts yesterday outlining the key elements of the dispute.
The defendants in the case are Reach Global and its owner Michael Closter. Chuck D has been working with Closter on his publishing rights since 2001, the two men having formed a business partnership in that year after the rapper had managed to re-acquire some of the song rights in his earlier work. The partnership that was set up would administer both those rights and the song rights in Chuck D's subsequent output.
The lawsuit explains how this was achieved through the creation of a business called Terrordome Music Publishing, in which both Reach Global and Chuck D's company Bring The Noize Music Inc were shareholders. A third shareholder in the venture was subsequently bought out, so that ownership of that publishing venture is now split between Reach Global (42%) and BTNM (58%).
There are seemingly two key disputes between Chuck D and Closter. The first is whether or not the intent back in 2001 was that Terrordome would actually own the rights in Chuck D's compositions, or whether it would administrate them on his behalf. The second relates to works created since 2012, which the rapper argues are outside the 2001 deal.
However, it's alleged, Closter has continued to register Chuck D's music with the US Copyright Office as being owned - and not just administered - by Terrordome.
The lawsuit states: "With full knowledge that he had no right to do so, after 31 Dec 2012, Closter, without authority or permission from [Chuck D], registered the copyrights in the stolen compositions in the name of Terrordome with the United States Copyright Office, falsely claiming and certifying that Terrordome had acquired the right to do so by written agreement".
"The effect", it goes on, "is that Reach Global, by virtue of its 42% interest in Terrordome, now reaps the illicit profits of which [Chuck D] has been deprived. Reach Global is also able to profit from the administration of the stolen compositions for the entire term of the copyrights".
To that end, the lawsuit requests that the court first confirm that Chuck D is the sole owner of the post-2012 works, and then force Reach Global to delete its copyright registrations in relation to those works and pay any monies it has received from them since they were published. And, of course, pay some nice damages along the way.
We await a response from Closter and his companies.
Tax evasion charges against Sigur Rós dismissed on double jeopardy grounds
Various members of Sigur Ros were charged with tax evasion earlier this year after the authorities in their home country investigated the band's finances. They were collectively accused of submitting incorrect tax returns from 2011 to 2014 and as a result evading 151 million Icelandic Krona (just over £945,000) in tax payments.
The band blamed a former accountant for the incorrect tax filings, before adding that they had co-operated fully with the tax authorities since being made aware of the errors. Insisting that the band had not deliberately set out to evade any taxes that were due to be paid, the group's legal rep said in a statement that "the members of Sigur Rós are musicians - not experts on bookkeeping and international finance".
At the time the band added that they intended to demonstrate at trial that they had not been actively involved in any attempt to deceive Iceland's tax authorities. However, there now won't be a trial after the case was dismissed based on a European human rights law that says people should not be tried for the same crime twice - what is sometimes known as the double jeopardy principle.
This is because the band had previously been cleared of tax evasion charges by Iceland's Directorate Of Tax Investigations at the same time as they agreed to pay any monies owing from past filing errors. This, the band's lawyers argued, meant that the Icelandic District Attorney could not, in fact, pursue a case on the same charges in relation to the same filing errors.
A statement from the band's management, published by Pitchfork, explains: "The band had already agreed to pay all outstanding historical taxes and fines to the revenue services, but were being separately pursued by the Icelandic District Attorney for further fines and sentencing relating to the same period".
"The defence's successful move on 4 Oct to have the charges dismissed hinged upon recent European Court Of Human Rights rulings on 'ne bis in idem' - literally 'not the same thing twice' - grounds, whereby a defendant cannot be punished more than once for the same offence".
By relying on European human rights rules, the court's decision could have a wider impact on Icelandic law. The management's statement adds that the country's most-widely read newspaper, Fréttablaðið, is "calling for a change in the law to comply with the European Convention On Human Rights".
That said, the prosecution is now appealing the court's decision, which could as yet impact on the Sigur Rós case and any wider precedent it may or may not set in Icelandic law.
But for now, the band themselves have said in a statement: "This is great news. We know it's not over yet, but the ruling is very reassuring".
Rufus Wainwright signs to BMG for new album
The musician has released his nine previous LPs through Universal affiliated labels. He initially worked with a then independent Dreamworks Records, which was distributed by Universal. After the mega-major acquired the Dreamworks label in 2003, Wainwright subsequently put out music with various other Universal divisions.
Most recently the major's classical label Deutsche Grammophon released a recording of his opera 'Prima Donna' and a collection of Shakespeare sonnets. The new record that is set to be handled by BMG will be Wainwright's first standard studio album since 2012's 'Out Of The Game'.
"I'm excited to join the BMG family', he says. "I have been feeling the love worldwide. The record business certainly has changed and I have to say with BMG it has changed for the better".
John Loeffler, BMG's EVP Marketing & Repertoire, New York, adds: "An absolute inspiration, Rufus's artistry knows no bounds and he continues to be one of the world's most inventive and thought-provoking songwriters. His new music has excited BMG across the globe and we're ready to deliver his new masterpiece to his fans around world. We are honoured to be his partner".
No indication has yet been given for when this new album might be out or what it might be called. But it exists and everyone is excited, which I think should be enough for you.
Foo Fighters' Taylor Hawkins announces guest-heavy new Coattail Riders album
The new LP, titled 'Get The Money', will feature a whole load of guests, including Foo Fighters bandmates Dave Grohl and Pat Smear, plus LeAnne Rimes, Guns N Roses' Duff McKagan, Jane's Addiction's Perry Farrell, The Pretenders' Chrissie Hynde and Queen's Roger Taylor.
Set for release on 8 Nov, the album's first single, 'Crossed The Line', is out now and features Grohl and Yes vocalist Jon Davison. Listen to that right here.
Here's the full tracklist and line-up of guests:
Crossed The Line (feat Dave Grohl and Jon Davison)
Peggy Sue announce new album, Vices
"Motorcade is about recognising the difference between what you need and what you want and asking for it as fast and loud as you like", says the duo's Katy Young. "I wrote it in the first wave of relief after a big break-up - it was probably the first moment that I was ready to be a bit mean and honest about it all. When we started arranging the song with the band it just kept getting louder and faster and more powerful, now it's this burst of energy that we're terrified of playing live but always love every second of".
"Lots of songs on the record are sort of messed-up love songs for things that feel good, but aren't necessarily good for you - like getting staying out too late, or taking too much comfort from certain people", she goes on. "That kind of interplay between the positive and the negative has always been in Peggy Sue songs, but it's particularly true of this album. It's about the things you do to lift you up when you're down, or distract you when you're sad, that can end up circling back".
The album is out on 21 Feb, with tour dates to follow. Here's the schedule for those:
24 Mar: Cambridge, Portland Arms
Avril Lavigne announces 2020 UK shows
"We had the most amazing time performing on the US Head Above Water tour", she says. "I can't believe how quickly it went by".
Ah yes, she recently did a US tour. And she played more than two dates on that. Actually, you know what, she's actually doing a twelve date European tour and in most countries she's only playing one show. So British Avril Lavigne fans are actually doing pretty well. German fans are getting four shows though, and isn't that just playing right into the Brexiters' hands?
Um, yeah, anyway, she continues: "Seeing all your faces each night and feeling your energy was exactly what I needed. I truly missed being up on stage, singing with you, and this has brought me so much happiness which is why I'm even more excited to announce that I'll be taking the Head Above Water tour worldwide next year with dates in Europe, Japan, China and Southeast Asia!"
Not sure about all this Europe, Japan, China and Southeast Asia nonsense, we're here to talk about the good old fashioned definitely not European UK tour. All two dates of it. And here they are...
1 Apr: London, Brixton Academy
Tickets go on sale on Friday.
The Hipgnosis Songs Fund has acquired the catalogue of producer Timbaland, which includes his share of tracks by Jay-Z, Rihanna, Drake, Justin Timberlake, Nelly Furtado, Missy Elliot and more. "My music is in great hands", he says.
Lady Gaga removed R Kelly collaboration 'Do What U Want' from streaming and download services earlier this year. Now she is set to re-issue physical versions of the 2013 album it featured on, 'Artpop', with the collaboration also scrubbed from the tracklisting. The release will be available from 11 Nov - according to Rolling Stone - five years to the day since its original release.
Michael Kiwanuka has released new single 'Hero'. "'Hero' is a song about how the gems of this world always seem to die young, and how those who are oppressed often seem to have the most to offer us", he says.
Omar Souleyman has announced that he will release new album 'Shlon' on 22 Nov. Here's new single 'Layle'. He also has UK live shows booked in at EartH in London on 6 Feb and The Junction in Cambridge on 7 Feb.
GIGS & TOURS
Kim Petras has announced UK shows in February next year, finishing at London's Shepherds Bush Empire on 11 Feb. She's also released the video for 'Icy' from her 'Clarity' album.
With UK shows coming up next month, Georgia is already planning her return to the road. She will play more UK and Ireland dates in March next year, finishing up at Heaven in London on 12 Mar. By that point, her new album, 'Seeking Thrills', will be out - its release date being 10 Jan. Tickets for the new shows go on sale tomorrow.
The nominees for next year's US Rock N Roll Hall Of Fame induction are in. They are Dave Matthews Band, Depeche Mode, The Doobie Brothers, Judas Priest, Kraftwerk, MC5, Motörhead, Nine Inch Nails, Notorious BIG, Pat Benatar, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, Soundgarden, Thin Lizzy, Todd Rundgren, T Rex, and Whitney Houston. Fans can vote this year via a Google Search page, which is weird.
Check out our weekly Spotify playlist of new music featured in the CMU Daily - updated every Friday.
Elton John says new version of The Lion King "was a huge disappointment"
He, of course, co-wrote five songs for the 1994 original version of 'The Lion King' with lyricist Tim Rice. Those songs went on to be big hits and remain popular to this day.
So, what does John think of the 2019 remake of the film? He tells GQ: "The new version of 'The Lion King' was a huge disappointment to me".
Too right! But why? Because the animation was too slick and the talking animals looked weird? Because the energy of the original was lost? No, "because I believe they messed the music up".
Oh yeah, of course. He explains: "Music was so much a part of the original and the music in the current film didn't have the same impact. The magic and joy were lost. The soundtrack hasn't had nearly the same impact in the charts that it had 25 years ago, when it was the bestselling album of the year. The new soundtrack fell out of the charts so quickly, despite the massive box office success".
One issue, he reckons, is that while he did work on reworked versions of his original songs for the movie rehash, he wasn't involved as much as he should have been. "I wish I'd been invited to the party more", he says. "But the creative vision for the film and its music was different this time around and I wasn't really welcomed or treated with the same level of respect. That makes me extremely sad".
But, he adds, "I'm so happy that the right spirit for the music lives on with the 'Lion King' stage musical". And I don't think John was directly involved in the development of the stage show, so that tempers the hubris a bit.
Anyway, if Disney could stop making inferior new versions of all its old films, that would be great.