|FRIDAY 1 OCTOBER 2021||COMPLETEMUSICUPDATE.COM|
|TODAY'S TOP STORY: Britney Spears' father Jamie yesterday criticised the decision by an LA court earlier this week to remove him as conservator of his daughter's estate. A legal rep for Jamie defended her client's record in running the conservatorship that has controlled Britney's personal and financial affairs for thirteen years, while again arguing that the court should have prioritised terminating the conservatorship entirely, rather than replacing Jamie with an alternative temporary conservator... [READ MORE]|
Britney Spears' father criticises court ruling removing him from his daughter's conservatorship
Britney and her lawyer Mathew Rosengart also support the termination of the conservatorship. However - since being appointed as Britney's attorney earlier this year - Rosengart has insisted that Jamie needs to be urgently removed from having any involvement in his daughter's finances before any termination process begins.
Jamie's role in running his daughter's financial affairs first came into the spotlight after he temporarily stood down due to ill health. On his return, it was claimed that Britney no longer wanted her father involved in the conservatorship. In the subsequent legal back and forth, Britney gave her headline-grabbing testimony in which she was very critical of the conservatorship in general and Jamie's role in particular. Shortly after that testimony, Britney's court-appointed lawyer stood down, and Rosengart was hired.
He has accused Jamie of mismanaging Britney's finances. And when Jamie suddenly changed his position last month regarding the future of Britney's conservatorship - calling for it to be terminated somewhat out of the blue - Rosengart claimed that Jamie now wanted the conservatorship to end in order to avoid his past conduct from being scrutinised.
At a court hearing earlier this week, Jamie's lawyer Vivian Thoreen denied all the claims Rosengart had made about her client and insisted that terminating the conservatorship was the priority. However, judge Brenda Penny said that - given the breakdown in relations between Britney and her father - "the current situation is not tenable and appears to be a toxic environment".
With that in mind, she replaced Jamie as conservator of Britney's estate with accountant John Zabel, and then indicated that she hoped to terminate the conservatorship by the end of the year.
In a statement issued yesterday, Thoreen stated: "Mr Spears loves his daughter Britney unconditionally. For thirteen years, he has tried to do what is in her best interests, whether as a conservator or her father. This started with agreeing to serve as her conservator when she voluntarily entered into the conservatorship. This included helping her revive her career and re-establish a relationship with her children".
"For anyone who has tried to help a family member dealing with mental health issues, they can appreciate the tremendous amount of daily worry and work this required", the statement continued. "For Mr Spears, this also meant biting his tongue and not responding to all the false, speculative, and unsubstantiated attacks on him by certain members of the public, media, or more recently, Britney's own attorney".
Turning to this week's ruling, Thoreen went on: "These facts make the outcome of yesterday's hearing all the more disappointing, and frankly, a loss for Britney. Respectfully, the court was wrong to suspend Mr Spears, put a stranger in his place to manage Britney's estate, and extend the very conservatorship that Britney begged the court to terminate earlier this summer".
On the termination of the conservatorship, she added: "Again, it was Mr Spears who took the initiative to file the petition to terminate the conservatorship when neither Britney's former court-appointed counsel nor her new privately-retained attorney would do so. It was Mr Spears who asked the court at yesterday's hearing to immediately terminate the conservatorship while Britney's own attorney argued against it"
"Despite the suspension", Thoreen concluded, "Mr Spears will continue to look out for the best interests of his daughter and work in good faith towards a positive resolution of all matters".
Sony Music launches new programme providing well-being support for artists
The new scheme, called Artist Assistance, is part of Sony Music's wider Artists Forward programme, which aims to position the music company as the artist-friendly major. It was under the same programme that Sony committed to pay royalties through to artists on pre-2000 contracts who have yet to recoup on their old record deals.
The mental well-being of artists in the music community has become a much bigger talking point in recent years, of course. Part of the challenge is how artists - who are usually basically self-employed - can access the support they need in this domain, especially those artists operating at a level where cash flow is often a challenge.
There are some great charitable schemes in some countries offering this support, of course, though for many artists, having access to a service like Sony's Artist Assistance could be hugely beneficial.
In a letter to artists, Sony says that the Artist Assistance programme will offer "free, confidential counselling services to address stress, anxiety, depression, grief, family and relationship matters and more. Active roster artists around the world can connect with a dedicated, licensed therapist at no cost and use of the programme is completely confidential".
Many artists in the US, it adds, are also "eligible to access qualifying healthcare and retirement services available through Sony Music's affiliations with leading artist organisations, such as unions representing US artists". The new scheme will also provide guidance on how to access those services.
Alongside the new well-being scheme, Sony has also announced that Susan Moultrie has been appointed SVP Of Artist Initiatives And Business Administration, and in that role she will coordinate the wider Artists Forward programme moving forward. That will also include providing artists with more information about how the business works.
Spotify launches DJ Mixes
Says a Spotify statement: "Dance and electronic music fans have long enjoyed custom mixes from their favourite DJs as a signature listening experience exclusive to the genre. Today, DJs in eight markets around the world are sharing their own mixed-music content, in addition to high-quality compilations, directly on Spotify through its new DJ Mixes, which the company is beginning to test out".
The eight markets, by the way, are the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands, Japan, Indonesia, the Philippines, Australia and New Zealand. And the new DJ Mixes section within the Spotify app launches with new mixes by DJs AmyElle, Adam Beyer, Shingo Nakamara, MOTi and Noisia. The DJ Mixes tab also collates a number of existing mix albums available within the Spotify catalogue.
Licensing DJ mixes for streaming can be a challenge, which is why the streaming services have not generally had an extensive selection of such mixes to date, and plenty of mix albums released in the CD era are not officially available to stream.
Apple's dabbling in this space includes using its Shazam technology to identify tracks in any one mix - and then working with its music licensing partners to get the all-clear to use those tracks in a way that means both the artists and labels behind the original tracks, and whoever's doing the mixing, can both benefit financially.
Quite how Spotify is handling all that isn't yet clear. Though, given that when I played the AmyElle mix this morning there was a slightly glitch between each track, maybe they should focus on fixing that technical bug first, before figuring out what audio ID and licensing shenanigans is required to process and clear DJ mixes at scale.
BIMM and Spotify partner on scholarships programme
BIMM explains that: "The Diversity & Inclusion Scholarships will be available for the 2022/23 academic year, exclusively for applicants from underrepresented groups identified in the BIMM Institute Access & Participation Plan. This includes black, Asian and minority ethnic students, disabled students, care leavers and mature age students, or those with a background of low participation in higher education, with a household income of below £25,000".
A scholarship will be offered at each of the BIMM colleges, meaning the opportunity is available in Brighton, Bristol, London, Manchester, Birmingham, Dublin, Hamburg and Berlin.
BIMM adds: "There will be eight scholarships in total, which will provide the cost of full tuition fees during the length of study, and all scholarship students will receive the support of dedicated careers teams in each college, an in house job matching service 'talent match' in their final year and access to BIMM's fair access fund. Each scholarship student will also be given scheduled access to Spotify executives for mentoring sessions".
In addition to the scholarships programme, BIMM and Spotify will also collaborate on staging masterclasses and creating educational resources to benefit everyone studying across the Institute's various colleges.
Announcing the partnership, BIMM's Group Head Of Employability, Mel Thornton, says: "The creative industry teams at BIMM enjoy a long-standing relationship with Spotify which is why we're so happy to announce an educational partnership that reflects our shared values".
"The scholarships on offer across the UK and Europe will support and encourage a diverse pipeline of artists, writers and business talent into the music industry", she goes on, "and we can't wait to welcome the Spotify scholarship students into our creative community and seeing what they achieve".
Meanwhile, Spotify's Head Of Artist & Industry Partnerships, Bryan Johnson, adds: "We're delighted to be partnering with an educational institute as well respected and successful as BIMM. The exceptional work they do for the music industry is unparalleled, and we at Spotify hope that the BIMM x Spotify Educational Partnership can continue to upskill young people and open doors to a career in creative industries".
"We are especially proud to be a part of the Diversity & Inclusion Scholarships programme", he continues, "ensuring that students in BIMM colleges across the UK, Ireland and Germany have access to this educational opportunity, and I am personally delighted to be hosting mentoring sessions for those involved. Our culture at Spotify is founded on diversity and belonging, and we hope that this partnership can continue to ensure that a broad spectrum of minds shape the future of our industry".
Delays' Greg Gilbert dies
In a statement posted on Twitter, Gilbert's brother and bandmate Aaron said last night: "I have no idea how to do this right now, but this afternoon at 2:22 we walked my brother back home to somewhere out there in the ether. Greg died surrounded in the endless love that us and all of you have given him on this journey, and we will never be able to fully express how much it meant to him (and all of us) to have you by our side lifting us up like a winged army. Your messages, your encouragement and your compassion have been our oxygen for the last five years".
"He was my brother and my best friend, and we did everything together, and it was the greatest honour to be with him as he took one last gentle breath before leaving us", he continued. "I could have sworn we were limitless... But now that 'is' has become 'was', I need to be mindful that there is still so much majesty out there in the universe, and so much to be thankful for despite the tidal wave of sadness washing over me right now".
"He is, and always will be, in our melodies, and in all the breaths in between, he's is in every brush stroke and every piece of art that his mind gave light to", he went on. "These are the crutches I'll try my best to lean on when it all feels too heavy"
"Death gives birth to a legacy, and it was his wish that he carried on living through your speakers from horizon to horizon, and through the technicolour delights he's left for us to swim in. I'll be singing with him in every blink and every gap and through every teardrop, and I'd love you to do the same, because his life was a chorus and the half life of music is infinite".
Originally named Corky - and then Indoru - Delays found fame in 2004 with the release of their debut album 'Faded Seaside Glamour'. They went on to release three more albums - the most recent in 2010. Although they started work on a fifth, it was never completed.
Following his diagnosis, Gilbert began to document his illness in art and poetry. As the cancer reached an advanced stage in 2017, a fundraising campaign was launched, successfully raising more than £200,000 so he could receive treatments not available on the NHS.
In August this year, Gilbert wrote on Twitter: "This isn't a post I ever thought I'd write but it seems necessary. I have, unfortunately, been taken off of treatment and am now being treated for pain relief at Countess Mountbatten Hospice. The pains are mostly under control and the nurses here are nothing less than angels".
"I'm now in an uncertain future where I don't know how long I have and what the days will look like", he went on. "I'm trying to get home for a couple of hours a day to see the kids, energy willing, and hope I can still find the time to create. I'm impossibly lucky to have the family and friends I have, as well as all the considerate souls out in cyberspace who regularly beam me their good vibes. I still believe in magic, the power of a good gesture and laughter. I want to fill the days ahead with all of these and so much more".
Gilbert is survived by his wife, Stacey, and their children Dali and Bay.
Liam Gallagher announces return to Knebworth
Back in 1996, Oasis played to 250,000 people over two nights at Knebworth, which were then the biggest outdoor concerts in British music history. Both dates sold out in minutes, as 2.5 million people attempted to buy tickets. The shows immediately gained legendary status, and last week a documentary about the performances was released in cinemas.
Anyway, Liam Gallagher is apparently willing to risk putting on a show that will become known as a disappointing version of what he did back in the 1990s. No, I'm sure it will be fine and no one will say that. Gallagher himself insists that "it's gonna be biblical".
The show on 4 Jun 2022 will follow the release of Gallagher's new solo album 'Cmon You Know', which is due out on 27 May. He'll be supported by Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds. No, not really. There's a much better line-up than that. Actually supporting will be Kasabian, Michael Kiwanuka, Fat White Family and Goat Girl.
Tickets for the concert will go on sale at 10am on 8 Oct.
Lil Wayne and Rich The Kid have released new collaborative mixtape 'Trust Find Babies'. Alongside the release, they've put out the video for 'Feel Like Tunechi'.
Grimes has released a new track, titled 'Love', on Instagram. "I wrote and produced this song this week in response to all the privacy invasion, bad press, online hate and harassment by paparazzis I've experienced this week", she says.
Kane Brown has released a new collaboration with HER, called 'Blessed & Free'.
Twice have released new single 'The Feels'.
Ahead of their new album 'Hushed & Grim' later this month, Mastodon have released new single 'Teardrinker'.
Ashnikko has released two new singles: 'Panic Attacks In Paradise' and 'Maggots'.
Daedelus and has teamed up with poet Joshua Idehen for new mini-album 'Holy Water Over Sons'. That's out on 26 Nov. New single 'Standing In My Own Way (Part One)', featuring Miguel Atwood Ferguson, is out now.
Ross From Friends has a new album called 'Treads' coming out on 22 Oct. Here's new single 'Love Divide'.
Connie Constance has released the video for 'Kids Like Us', from her recent 'Prim & Propa' EP.
Wargasm have released the video for their latest single, 'Salma Hayek'.
Check out our weekly Spotify playlist of new music featured in the CMU Daily - updated every Friday.
Wild boars attempt to steal Shakira's phone
Detailing the ordeal in an Instagram story post, the musician said in Spanish: "Look how they left my bag, the two wild boars that attacked me in the park. They were taking my bag to the woods with my phone in it. They've destroyed everything".
Strange as it might sound, stories like this are not that uncommon in Barcelona and other cities in Europe, as wild boar increasingly move into cities to live off rubbish and other things they find. Like the bags of pop stars. And nudists. Any bags really, I guess.
In August this year, a nudist who had been sunbathing at a lake near Berlin was photographed chasing a boar that had taken his bag, which contained a laptop. And in 2016, Barcelona police logged nearly 1200 phonecalls reporting incidents involving the animals.
It seems that the boars have identified the bags of humans as potential sources of food. Although it probably shouldn't be ruled out that they are, in fact, looking for phones and laptops, with a view to coordinating their efforts online and eventually becoming the dominant species on the planet. And if that's the case - good luck to them.