TODAY'S TOP STORY: Chinese web giant Tencent looks likely to be the next target of government regulators in China who are now cracking down on anti-competitive behaviour in the country's tech sector. Rival Alibaba was recently fined $2.75 billion for abusing its market dominance in the country, and sources have now told Reuters that Tencent can expect a slightly lower but nevertheless significant fine... [READ MORE]

TOP STORIES Tencent likely to be fined in Chinese competition law crackdown, could be forced to sell music apps
DEALS Virgin Music partners with Australian hip hop indie Biordi Music
Maya Delilah signs publishing deal

LABELS & PUBLISHERS BMG to speed up payments to songwriters on old contracts
Universal Music announces executive rejig in Malaysia

ARTIST NEWS Razorlight reform classic line-up
ONE LINERS Billie Eilish, Tommy Cash, Rufus Wainwright, more
AND FINALLY... Noel Gallagher says Tony Blair is "the last person who made sense"
Check out all the latest job opportunities with CMU Jobs. To advertise your job opportunities here email or call 020 7099 9060.
Erased Tapes is currently seeking a creative and organised Sync Licensing Assistant to support the company's Head of Publishing in a wide variety of tasks.

For more information and to apply click here.
The ISM is looking for an experienced professional to work closely with the CEO to lead its external affairs function.

For more information and to apply click here.
Kilimanjaro is seeking an experienced Ticketing Project Manager to join its busy Ticketing team.

For more information and to apply click here.
The Columbo Group is looking for a Graphic Designer & Video Editor to work across some of its music venues; including Jazz Cafe, Phonox and Metropolis.

For more information and to apply click here.
Youth-led charity Small Green Shoots is seeking a Managing Director to lead a staff team of nine, plus ten part-time trainees and a rolling programme of work placements.

For more information and to apply click here.
Sentric Music is looking for a Copyright Assistant to support the administration of music copyrights on behalf of its publishing partners and catalogue owners.

For more information and to apply click here.
Kudos Records is an independent music distribution company. Due to continued expansion, there now exists an opportunity to join its sales and label management team.

For more information and to apply click here.
Domino is seeking a Digital Account Manager to oversee digital account relationships and strategy, to lead key partnerships and activity with digital music service providers.

For more information and to apply click here.
Secretly Group is seeking a Marketing Director (UK/Europe) to lead artist marketing campaigns.

For more information and to apply click here.
Kilimanjaro is looking for Website Administrator to update and maintain the Myticket websites and .ie and the Kilimanjaro corporate website.

For more information and to apply click here.
Kilimanjaro is seeking an experienced marketeer to join its touring marketing team.

For more information and to apply click here.
Kilimanjaro is looking for an experienced Artworker to join its expanding design team.

For more information and to apply click here.
Kilimanjaro is seeking an experienced marketeer to join its expanding Special Projects & Theatrical team.

For more information and to apply click here.
Ninja Tune is seeking a reliable and experienced NTPM Audio Producer to join the Ninja Tune Production team in the UK office, on a full-time basis.

For more information and to apply click here.
The Jazz Cafe is looking for a Marketing Manager to join its team.

For more information and to apply click here.
The Columbo Group is looking for a Marketing Manager to work on The Blues Kitchen and The Old Queens Head.

For more information and to apply click here.
The Columbo Group is looking for a Logistics & Hospitality Manager to work across its XOYO, Jazz Cafe, Phonox & Camden Assembly venues.

For more information and to apply click here.
Expand your knowledge about the inner workings of the music business, best practice across the music industry, and all the latest trends and developments, with CMU's weekly webinars.

Taking place every Tuesday afternoon at 2.30pm London time, these one hour online training sessions are delivered by CMU's Chris Cooke.

Each webinar presents timely and easy-to-understand insights about a different music business topic, with plenty of opportunity to ask questions.

Attendees can also access online resources - including downloadable slides - and a recording of the webinar available for a month after the live session.

BOOK NOW at special rates - access to each individual webinar is just £25, plus there are additional discounts if you book into multiple sessions.

Tuesday 4 May 2021 | 2.30pm | BOOK TICKET
While the streaming boom continues to be led by Spotify-style services, the digital music market is diversifying again. New streaming products and business models present both challenges and opportunities, while lingering questions about Spotify-style streaming increasingly need to be answered.
Tuesday 11 May 2021 | 2.30pm | BOOK TICKET
The music rights business has been more stable during the COVID-19 crisis, though certain revenue streams have taken a hit. Meanwhile copyright law and the music industry's licensing systems continue to evolve. Get a speedy update on all the key developments in music rights with this webinar.
Tuesday 18 May 2021 | 2.30pm | BOOK TICKET
The music rights business makes money by exploiting the controls that come with the copyrights in songs and recordings. Get to grips with all the basic principles of copyright law and how music copyright makes money in this user-friendly easy-to-follow webinar.
Tuesday 25 May 2021 | 2.30pm | BOOK TICKET
Sometimes the music industry licenses through direct deals, other times it employs the collective licensing approach. Fully understand how collective licensing works - in the UK and around the world - in this user-friendly easy-to-follow webinar.
Tuesday 1 Jun 2021 | 2.30pm | BOOK TICKET
Getting songwriters and artists paid when their songs and recordings are played often comes down to whether or not the right data is in the system. But what data? This webinar runs through all the key data points and explains how to get information into the system.
Navigate and understand the music business with guides and reports from CMU...
Artist And Songwriter Rights In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to the rights artists and songwriters enjoy over their music
Music Rights Data In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to music rights data, data standards and databases
Music Industry Basics In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to all the different strands of the modern music industry
Streaming Challenges In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to the challenges facing the streaming business in 2020
Collective Licensing In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to the collective licensing system
GET FULL ACCESS TO THE CMU LIBRARY by going premium for just £5 a month

Tencent likely to be fined in Chinese competition law crackdown, could be forced to sell music apps 
Chinese web giant Tencent looks likely to be the next target of government regulators in China who are now cracking down on anti-competitive behaviour in the country's tech sector. Rival Alibaba was recently fined $2.75 billion for abusing its market dominance in the country, and sources have now told Reuters that Tencent can expect a slightly lower but nevertheless significant fine.

According to Reuters, the State Administration Of Market Regulation agency in China could fine Tencent about $1.54 billion for "not properly reporting past acquisitions and investments for antitrust reviews" as well as "anticompetitive practices in some of its businesses".

SMAR's investigation into the dealings and operations of Tencent has seemingly put particular scrutiny on the company's music operations, most of which are now run through the standalone Tencent Music Entertainment company.

Regulators in the country had already expressed concern about the exclusivity deals that Tencent struck with various music rights owners - including the majors - when music streaming first started to gain momentum in the country.

Those deals meant that not only did Tencent secure the rights to include each label's music on its own streaming services, it also became the distributor of those catalogues within the Chinese market. Meaning other streaming services had to then try and get licensing deals from their main competitor in order to include all that music on their platforms.

Exclusivity deals of that kind are starting to end, partly because of regulator pressure, with more labels having direct licensing deals with other streaming services in China, in particular Tencent's main rival in that domain, NetEase Cloud Music.

However, the regulator still reportedly has concerns, in particular over the fact that, as a result of past acquisitions, Tencent owns three streaming services in China - Kugou, Kuwo and QQ Music - as well as the super popular karaoke app WeSing.

Reuters' sources say that, as well as a fine, Tencent could be forced to give up any exclusive music distribution rights it still holds, and maybe even to sell off Kugou and Kuwo.

Commenting on the incoming sanctions against Tencent, one of those sources said: "The attitude from the regulator is that, unlike Alibaba, you are not the biggest target here, but it would be impossible not to penalise Tencent now that the campaign is in action".

The sources also confirmed that Tencent is busy lobbying for more lenient sanctions from the regulator. Although, apparently, the company's top priority is ensuring that government officials don't seek to interfere in the operations of its core businesses - that being gaming and the WeChat app - and that it would accept a higher fine if that could be achieved.

As well as the increased government scrutiny of China's biggest web firms regarding alleged abuse of market dominance, officials are also getting stricter in regulating online financial services in the country. Thirteen companies operating in that domain - including Tencent and TikTok owner Bytedance - have been ordered to adhere to stricter rules around any financial products they offer.


Virgin Music partners with Australian hip hop indie Biordi Music 
Having recently set up shop in Australia, Universal Music's distribution and services division Virgin Music has announced a partnership with Sydney-based R&B and hip hop label Biordi Music, which is led by its founder Lowkee.

Since launching in 2019, Biordi Music's biggest successes have been with R&B act Youngn Lipz, though its roster also includes a bunch of emerging artists from Australia's R&B and hip hop scenes, including Billymaree, Bally Boy, Pistol Pete & Enzo, Ay Huncho, Masi Rooc and Nasa Nova.

Confirming the new partnership with the indie, Virgin Music Australia's MD Timothy Janes says: "The entire team at Virgin, both here and internationally, are so excited about working together with Biordi Music. This partnership comes via our new A&R scout Nick Lupi, and what an immense first signing this is. Biordi Music has proven itself in a short period of time to be at the forefront of Australian contemporary music culture, and their ambitions, quite rightly, are to reach a new global audience".

Meanwhile, Lowkee adds: "In this day and age, it's important to quickly adapt to new technology and trends. It's just as important to take full advantage of all the tools that exist now to push your music forward. As the Biordi Music operations and roster grows, the vision has also expanded. We have our eyes set on global dominance with a goal of showcasing the incredible and diverse talent Australia has to offer".


Maya Delilah signs publishing deal
Amadeus Publishing and Bucks Music Group have jointly signed Maya Delilah to a publishing deal, ahead of the release of her second EP.

"Maya is a truly unique and inspiring new artist", says Amadeus co-founder Sacha Skarbek. "A cutting-edge musician, coupled with an ability to write thought provoking, exceptional songs. [I'm] so proud and excited to be working with her".

Director of A&R at Bucks, Sarah Liversedge Platz, adds: "Maya is not only a great songwriter with an infectious soul-pop sound, she's also a phenomenal guitarist, combating the stereotype of it being a 'male instrument'. Her popularity is sky-rocketing on social media and there's so much more great music to come. We're pleased to support Amadeus Publishing in her signing and continued development".

Meanwhile, Delilah herself comments: "I am beyond excited to be joining the Amadeus/Bucks team. They've been nothing but supportive and encouraging of me and my music and I can't wait to work closely with them and see where this road takes me".

The BRIT School graduate released her debut EP, 'Oh Boy', last year. New EP 'It's Not Me, It's You', is set for release later this year. New single, 'Need A Word With Cupid', is out today. Listen here.


BMG to speed up payments to songwriters on old contracts 
BMG has announced a move to speed up royalty payments for the songwriters whose music it controls or represents. The new policy basically means that it will apply the payment terms that appear in most of its new writer contracts to all the songs in its catalogue.

Explaining the change, the music rights firm says that it means all writers will now be paid "within 60 days of the close of a royalty period", even if their contract says 90 days, meaning they get their money a month earlier.

Most of the contracts that currently say 90 days relate to catalogues that the current iteration of BMG acquired in the years following its launch in 2008, including the Chrysalis and Cherry Lane song catalogues.

Although affected writers will only see their money one month earlier under the new system, the change is part of a wider scheme at BMG to bring old record and publishing contracts in line with modern conventions, voluntarily removing or amending terms that were pretty standard in the 20th Century, but which seem unfair by modern deal standards.

The company's CIO Sebastian Hentzschel says: "With 60 day terms the new standard in music publishing, we are delighted to extend them to our acquired catalogues. This service update reaffirms BMG's commitment to deliver 21st Century levels of fairness, transparency and service to songwriters and artists whenever they signed their deals".

Meanwhile, CEO Hartwig Masuch adds: "Contracts define minimum terms in the relationship between music companies and their clients, but too often they become frozen in time, creating generations of disadvantaged musicians. Paying our clients faster forms part of our broader program to make the music industry work better for artists and songwriters".


Universal Music announces executive rejig in Malaysia 
Universal Music has announced an expansion of its leadership team in Malaysia, with Kim Lim promoted to the role of Managing Director of its division in the country. Which is a snappier title than her previous role at Universal Music Malaysia as Senior Director Of New Business And Artist Management & Head Of Marketing And Sales.

While navigating that rather long job title, Lim led Universal's partnership, branded content and live event activities in Malaysia, as well as overseeing the launch of a talent management outfit called Celebrity 360.

Other new appointments at UMM which, the major says, will "help accelerate domestic artist development and label growth", include Hermond Cheng, who becomes Director Of A&R And Marketing and Head Of Def Jam Malaysia; Ivan Koh, who has been appointed as Director Of Commercial & Digital Strategy; and Patrina Wong, who will be the division's Finance & Operations Director.

Confirming all this, the CEO of Universal Music Southeast Asia, Calvin Wong, says: "I am THRILLED that Kim's ability, business innovation and strategic leadership have enabled her to rise from within UMM to the top job in Malaysia".

"Having been a passionate and successful marketing executive on the label side, she has achieved amazing results in transforming our non-recorded income, whilst spearheading the innovative and successful launch of Celebrity 360 in Malaysia", he adds. "I'm confident that with the team of Kim, Hermond, Ivan and Patrina in place, UMM will continue to expand the opportunities for Malaysian music talent around the world, whilst achieving new levels of success domestically".


CMU+TGE 2021 Panel: Everything An Aspiring Artist Needs To Know - And How To Teach It 
The Great Escape Online is taking place on 13 and 14 May, with a packed conference programme of interviews, webinars, briefings and debates, both on-demand and live, as well as networking opportunities galore within a bespoke online conference platform.

CMU is presenting three strands of panels and briefings this year. That includes Future Music Talent, looking at how music educators and the music industry can better support entrepreneurial early-career music-makers, how COVID has impacted the fanbase-building process for DIY phase artists, and why it's more important than ever to educate the creative community about copyright and data. Look out for this panel as part of the Future Music Talent strand...

Beyond making great music, what else do music-makers need to know in order to build a career around their music-making? Experts from music education and the music industry consider the knowledge and know-how music-makers need in order to build a business around their music, whether they aspire to be a frontline artist or to pursue a portfolio career.

And how do those early-career music-makers access this knowledge and know-how, and what role do music educators have in helping future music talent to become artist entrepreneurs?

Hear from Fiona McAuley, Head Of Digital - UK Music at YM&U Group; Ian Johnson, Music Industry Liaison & Talent Development at Access Creative; Nicky Williams, Careers & Industry Manager at BIMM; and artist and mentor ShaoDow.

To access the CMU strands and all the other content available as part of TGE Online this year get yourself a delegate pass here.

Razorlight reform classic line-up
Razorlight have announced the reunion of their classic line-up for the first time in more than a decade. That's Johnny Borrell, Andy Burrows, Björn Ågren and Carl Dalemo, if you were wondering. Which I'm sure you weren't. They'll kick things off with a live-streamed performance in June.

"It feels incredible", said Burrows, appearing with Johnny Borrell on Chris Evans' Virgin Radio show. "We've spent the past week or two rehearsing. Playing these songs has been an absolute joy. The emotions that were going through me when we started playing 'America', I forgot to play the first half of the song - it was totally nuts. It's been amazing. It’s so powerful playing these old tunes. It’s very very special".

Borrell added: "I'm really enjoying reconnecting with Andy and Carl, it’s like getting to know people again. I'm enjoying it because you never want to lose friends. It’s a horrible thing to think. It doesn't really make sense. It definitely feels good to me on a personal level. On a creative level - amazing. We've been in the studio rehearsing and recording. As soon as the four of us are in the room, it just sounds amazing, straight away".

Of course, since Burrows quit the band in 2009, Borrell has continued on with various different collaborators and was once upstaged by a hat. The band have become a bit of a target for ridicule in that time (not least due to that hat), so it's easy to forget that there was a time when they were really quite popular. Whether that can be rekindled now remains to be seen.

If you're one of the people excited about all this, you can buy tickets for the livestream here.



The European Music Managers Alliance has name Yvonne Stausbøll as its first Executive Director. "This is a significant step for EMMA", says the organisation's Chair Per Kviman. "Yvonne's extensive experience will help take our organisation forward, ensuring music managers have representation at the heart of European policy discussions and expanding our engagement with other music-based organisations".



Billie Eilish has released new single 'Your Power'. The track is taken from her new album, 'Happier Than Ever', which is out on 30 Jul.

Little Mix have released a new version of 'Confetti', featuring Saweetie.

The Kid Laroi and Miley Cyrus have teamed up for new single 'Without You'.

Tommy Cash has released the video for 'Racked', from his latest EP 'Moneysutra'. He's also announced that he will play The Forum in London on 15 Apr 2022.

Pauli The PSM has released new single 'Cowgirl (Creeping)'. "I'm dealing with the fear of my partner's infidelity", they say of the track. "It's somewhere between unrequited love and being the side piece. No one wants to be the side piece!" Their new album, 'Secret Life Of A Badman Vol 2', is out on 21 May.

Deema has released new single 'Can I?'

Babii haș released new single 'Driift'. Her new album, 'Miirror', is out on 21 May. She'll also be touring the UK in November.

Colleen has released new single 'Hidden In The Current'. Her new album, 'The Tunnel And The Clearing', is out on 21 May, and she's announced that she will play King's Place in London on 7 Aug.

The Chills have released new single 'World Within Worlds'. "Many conspiracy theorists don't seem to appreciate the vast numbers of people who would have to be 'in on the secret' [with any one theorised conspiracy] - and that humans are not good at keeping secrets", says the band's Martin Phillipps of the inspiration for the song. "They also miss that scientists, under severe peer scrutiny, are actually working to protect and enlighten them". New album, 'Scatterbrain', is out on 13 May.

Baby Strange have released new single 'I Want To Believe'.



Rufus Wainwright will perform his 'Rufus Does Judy' show as a livestream from Capitol Studios on 10 Jun, coinciding with what would have been Judy Garland's 99th birthday. A special one-person live audience will be made up of Renée Zellweger. So, good news for fans of Zellweger's clapping technique. Tickets here.

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


Noel Gallagher says Tony Blair is "the last person who made sense"
Noel Gallagher has praised Tony Blair, saying that he was "the last person who made sense" in British politics. Gallagher, of course, became the poster boy for what was dubbed "Cool Britannia" at the start of Blair's stint as UK prime minister, after he was one of the creative types invited to Downing Street following Labour's election win in 1997.

Speaking to GQ, he says: "Because Thatcherism had coloured all our lives, which was still prevalent with John Major, when Tony Blair came along and I heard him speak I thought – and I still think to this day – he was great. He's the last person that made any sense to me. The third way, or centrist politics, was a new thing. I was like, 'That is fucking really clever'. I started meeting [Blair and his ministers] at various awards ceremonies. John Prescott was a bit of a cartoon character, but I thought the rest of them were alright".

Clearly the last couple of decades have given Gallagher time to reassess how he feels, given that back in 1999 he was somewhat disillusioned with the fact he'd been used to boost Blair's credibility. Back then he told the Observer: "Nothing really changes does it? Same shit, different day ... I just thought, if the Prime Minister of England wanted to see me, then, fuck me, I must be a fucking geezer. I was convinced that I was going to get a knighthood that night. You live and learn, don't you?"

Liam Gallagher has also been down on his brother's Downing Street visit in the past, accusing Noel of "sipping champagne with a war criminal". Although maybe he was just miffed that he wasn't invited. Blair's former spin doctor Alastair Campbell has previously said that Liam wasn't included on the invite list for the Cool Britannia reception because no one was sure he'd behave.

Elsewhere in the new GQ interview, Noel gets even more dewy-eyed about the 90s, saying: "The 1990s now is revered as probably the last great decade when we were free, because the internet had not enslaved us all and driven the world's neurosis to the point of fucking paralysis, where you can't say or be or do or suggest or take the piss out of or be irreverent to anything or any fucking section of society. Whereas back then, it was fucking spontaneous. Everything was spontaneous and off the cuff, particularly in my life. I didn't think about anything. And now everything is thought out".

Anyway, Noel's not actually supposed to be looking back as far as the 1990s, although he is currently milking the nostalgia pound. He's back on the interview circuit because his High Flying Birds project has somehow been going for a decade now. And to mark the occasion, they're releasing a greatest hits compilation - called 'Back The Way We Came: Vol 1 (2011-2021)' - on 11 Jun.

Commenting on the release, he says: "Ten years of Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds? Blimey! Just think of all the things I COULD have done in that time! The title just came to me one afternoon, at the kitchen table. It's a saying isn't it: Back the way we came'? I actually thought it was a great title. Which is why it's got Vol 1. Because if there's another one, I'm not coming up with another title!"

The compilation will include a new track too, 'We're On Our Way Now', which you can listen to here.


ANDY MALT | Editor
Andy heads up the team, overseeing the CMU Daily, website and Setlist podcast, managing social channels, reporting on artist and business stories, and writing the CMU Approved column. (except press releases, see below)
CHRIS COOKE | Co-Founder & MD
Chris provides music business coverage, writing key business news and CMU Trends. He also leads the CMU Insights consultancy unit and the CMU:DIY future talent programme, as well as heading up CMU publisher 3CM UnLimited. (except press releases, see below)
SAM TAYLOR | Commercial Manager
Sam oversees the commercial side of the CMU media, leading on sales and sponsorship, and also heads up business development at CMU Insights and CMU:DIY. or call 020 7099 9060
CARO MOSES | Co-Publisher
Caro helps oversee the CMU media as a Director of 3CM UnLimited, as well as heading up the company's other two titles ThisWeek London and ThreeWeeks Edinburgh, and supporting other parts of the business.
CMU helps people to navigate and understand the music business.

We do this through our media, our training and our research, and at a range of music industry events.

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 CMU Digest and CMU Trends.

CMU Insights is our music business consultancy: supporting the industry.

CMU:DIY is our future talent programme: supporting new music talent.

Pathways Into Music is our foundation supporting music educators.

© 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 |