CMU Daily - on the inside 22 Jan 2004
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- RIAA launch another 500 downloader lawsuits
- Ryan Adams causes chaos at Xfm
- BPI reach agreement with CD-wow!
- Single Review: Belle & Sebastian - I'm A Cuckoo
- The Who to perform 'Tommy' at charity gig
- GWR boss urges government to set digital radio schedule
- Wild look out for up and coming talent
- EMAP plan 'history of modern music' specials
- Government to increase broadband aims
- My Morning Jacket line up rejig
- AOL launch movie download promotion
- T Mobile do deal with Universal
- Scissor Sisters dates
- Single Review: Archie Bronson Outfit - Kangaroo Heart 
- Evanescence Lee backtracks on Cold comments
- American Idol series three gets biggest audiences 
- Bids for Beastie Boy label assets going slow
- Muslim group appose Carey gig in Malaysia
- Art Garfunkel charged for marijuana possession


And so the anti-download battle carries on. Lawyers for the Recording Industry Association of America yesterday launched another 500 lawsuits against individuals who they reckon have downloaded illegal music - the highest number of simultaneous lawsuits the Association has undertaken since it launched its consumer-targeted litigation last year. 

Of course the latest set of lawsuits are somewhat more complicated than those launched last Autumn. As previously reported a US court ruled last month that current American copyright legislation does not give the Association the right to subpoena the contact information of individual consumers they suspect of illegally downloading music from their colleges or ISPs. A previous court ruling had given the RIAA the go ahead to subpoena that information making for quite simple legal action.

This time the RIAA have only the IP addresses of the 500 suspected downloaders. They will now have to present their case on each of the defendants in court in order to gain the contact information that is required to enable them to properly sue. Word is the Association hope a fair proportion of the lawsuits can be settled much quicker through out-of-court settlements. They have sent warning letters to the relevant ISPs hoping they will be passed on to the consumers in question who might then come forward and reach settlements rather than wait for their contact information to be subpoenaed. 

Announcing the latest legal action RIAA boss Cary Sherman told reporters: "Our campaign against illegal file sharers is not missing a beat. The message to illegal file sharers should be as clear as ever."


Never the most media-friendly of artists, Ryan Adams caused a fair few problems for Xfm on Tuesday night when he was due to play a full band session on their Music:Response show before chatting to presenter Ian Camfield. 

Word is that having previously soundchecked Adams arrived at the station at 8pm for an 8.15pm broadcast. He then asked to put back the session ten minutes because his voice "wasn't hitting the high notes" required in the new single. During those ten minutes he then stormed out of the studio claiming his vocals "sounded shit", adding "I can't handle all this right now, I'm going." 

Producers managed to locate Adams who agreed to do an interview but not the session - though he was eventually persuaded to do one solo acoustic track without his band. That interview proved difficult at best - on past times Ryan said: "I don't have any hobbies other than writing music, taking load of drugs and reading." He then launched into a tirade about mortality and the music industry saying: "If it's about cash and fame, then that is a retarded thing to want if ultimately everyone is going to fucking die, you're going to die by yourself. I don't know why the money you have or the people you fuck is going to do anything for you anyway."

Having recovered from the ordeal Camfield told us: "He was the biggest prima donna I've ever met. We've had some big names on the show - Coldplay, Radiohead, Oasis, you name it they've been in, but I've never seen anything like this."

Perhaps they should book Bryan Adams next time - we hear he's a really nice bloke.


Online music retailer CD-Wow! has reached an out-of-court settlement with the BPI over those allegations they were violating UK copyright laws by importing cheaper CDs from outside Europe enabling them to undercut their retail competitors. The agreement comes two weeks before the case was due to go to court.

A somewhat wordy joint statement from both parties set out their agreement: "The record industry claimed that CD Wow! was obtaining sound recordings from outside Europe and selling them to UK and Irish consumers. As a result of the settlement CD Wow! has agreed that it will not sell CDs that have been first placed on the market outside Europe to UK and Irish customers. It will only sell CDs that have first been placed on the European market to UK and Irish customers. All other details of the settlement are confidential." 

The tangible result of the agreement is that album prices on the CD Wow! service - which are currently set at £8.99 - will rise about £2. The BPI is continuing to investigate the American arm of Amazon who they also suspect is violating copyright rules by selling UK and Ireland customers music acquired from outside the EU.


SINGLE REVIEW: Belle & Sebastian - I'm a Cuckoo (Rough Trade)
Slow down! Dear oh dear. Belle and Sebastian have gone a little too up-tempo for the liking of us fey indiekids, even to the extent of having a remix done by the Avalanches (who manage to whisk B+S away to somewhere far more tropical-sounding.) The original album version is paced more how we've come to expect, and you can't argue with a lyricist who's got the audacity to rhyme Tokyo with Thin Lizzy-O: you just have a sneaking feeling that Hefner would do it with a little more lan. LA
Released 16 Feb 
Contact: Wild [CP, CR] Best Est [RP, NP] Anglo [RR, NR]


Roger Daltrey has confirmed The Who will perform their rock opera 'Tommy' as part of the Albert Hall music programme designed to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust - a charity for which Daltrey acts as patron. The show will be the first of four music events taking place in late Mar / early Apr - dates as follows:

29 Mar: The Who
30 Mar: Stereophonics 
1 Apr: Jools Holland & Friends
2 Apr: Tom Jones

There will also be a comedy night hosted by Steve Coogan as Alan Partridge on 31 Mar. 

Talking about the charity gigs Daltrey told reporters: "It is fantastic that we are able to announce another line-up of exceptional shows to raise funds for Teenage Cancer Trust. Teenagers with cancer are still discriminated against by the NHS. It is my mission, through these shows, to end this prejudice. Without teenagers, there would be no pop industry and it is about time they are recognised by the NHS as the distinct group of people that they are. Teenage Cancer Trust is a charity close to my heart and I am working with other members of The Who to break through red tape and get specialist cancer wards built for teenagers suffering from this terrible disease. These units are a right, not a privilege."


The chairman of radio group GWR has called on the government to set a target date for the switch-off of analogue radio transmissions. Speaking at a GWR organised event on digital radio yesterday Ralph Bernard said DAB radio was gaining real momentum and that the industry now needed the government to set a timescale for the changeover to digital, like they have with the TV industry. 

Bernard: "Now is the time for government to recognise the success of DAB so far and start to plan for digital switchover for radio, the same as we have for digital TV. By setting a date when they will start to consider digital switchover for radio, government will provide a target for manufacturers to bring in new products, give broadcasters a timescale for building our new digital brands, and give us the prospect of stopping the waste and expense of broadcasting our signals on both analogue and digital. The digital switchover plan for television is working well, with the first review of progress taking place in 2006 - we need a similar structure for radio. It worked for TV, it will work for us too."


College marketing company Wild is planning on launching a record label and they are encouraging the network of student journalists and DJs they service to put forward up and coming talent. Although the company already have a couple of releases planned the company says: "If you are aware of any fantastically talented yet unsigned musicians ask them if you can send us a demo on their behalf. There is no particular style that we are looking at but we ain't looking for any Pop Idol type foolishness so something that might not look too out of place in, say, Kerrang! or NME or Jockey Slut is a good pointer. Just a little genius is all we ask." Anyone with demos they think might be appropriate should send them to Wild, 2B Westpoint, 39-40 Warple Way, London, W3 0RG 


EMAP have announced they will celebrate the 50th anniversary of modern music (which many tend to say began with Elvis in 1954) with three special issues of Q magazine looking at music in the 50s and 60s (issue one), 70s (issue two) and the 80s, 90s and more recent years (issue three). First issue is out on Friday.


The government is planning on stepping up its ambition to have the whole country able to access high speed broadband internet and is planning on putting those ambitions into their manifesto ahead of the next election. 

The pledge relates to work by the Broadband Stakeholder Group which is working to achieve the government's current ambition of having the most competitive and extensive broadband market among the G7 nations by 2005. The BSG reckon that target is well on its way to being achieved and that the government should now be aiming higher.

As a result E-commerce Minister Stephen Timms yesterday promised that a new target for broadband will be produced this year in consultation with the industry. "The BSG are absolutely right to say that we are reaching the 2005 milestone. I think we are on track. Although I would not want to minimise the challenges that remain, I think it is plausible that by the end of next year every community will have access to broadband. A year or two ago that really would have looked far fetched. We now need to set our sights further ahead and look at what kind of online economy we are going to have by the end of the decade." 


US rockers My Morning Jacket have had a rejig following the departure of guitarist Johnny Quaid and keyboardist Danny Cash from the band. Guitarist Carl Broemel has joined the group and Cash's duties are being filled by Bo Koster. The change has been completed ahead of the group's up coming US tour. 

Confirming the changes, a statement on the band's website reads: "Please know that Danny and John are still part of My Morning Jacket's fabric and friendship and where they will be missed dearly, we couldn't be happier for them to take their lives in a direction they're most comfortable with."

Adding parting remarks the two departing members said:

Quaid: To the fans and comrades all over the world, thanks for letting me and us live this dream, it's all I ever wanted, but now all I want is at home."

Cash: "As much as I love the band and the music we make, it's just not worth sacrificing my home life. So now, everybody wins: the band gets a touring keyboard player/driver/roadie who loves his job and I get to be home in Louisville and spend time with my family and friends and start my own business."


With the digital music market getting very competitive, the legit film download world is beginning to take shape with the news that AOL have teamed up with internet-movie venture Movielink to make ten major films - including 'Pirates of the Caribbean' and 'Terminator 3' - available for download for just 99 cents. AOL users who buy the film (they take about 30 minutes to download on broadband) have 30 days to watch the movie after download, and 24 hours of access to the film once they have pressed play. Backed by five key Hollywood studios, Movielink will be making a loss on the AOL promotion in a bid to build interest in the film download arena. The service will only be available in the US for the time being.


T Mobile have done a deal with the mobile division of Universal that will make numerous tracks from the major's catalogue available for the network's Mastertones service. Clips of the tracks will be made available to download for use as ringtones (ie ringtones which are actual tracks rather than polyphonic recreations). The deal will probably also supply T Mobile's recent music initiative where customers can choose tracks that play while people phone into their mobiles. The deal has been done following Universal's testing of the phone network's DRM systems. 

Announcing the deal Universal Mobile CEO Cedric Ponsot says, "Understandably, we are delighted to conclude the Mastertones agreement, which not only protects our artists' rights but allows T-Mobile customers access to a range of exciting new products using clips of original songs."


Sure to get a suitably high entry on the charts this Sunday, buzz band Scissor Sisters have been talking to Radio 1 about their up coming album - explaining that current single 'Comfortably Numb' is just one of many musical styles fans will find on the long player: "'Comfortably Numb' is the most primitive song that we have put out, and on the album it's gonna be the most primitive sounding song on there. But that vibe works with us so we kept it and once we finished it we just haven't touched it. It's a vibe we appreciate on all of our stuff if there's some element of it being really grounded and down to earth."

Meanwhile Scissor Sister go on tour next month, dates as follows:

3 Feb: Northampton Soundhaus 
4 Feb: Brighton Concorde 
5 Feb: London Scala 
6 Feb: Bristol Louisanna 
8 Feb: Birmingham Bar Academy 
9 Feb: Leicester Charlotte 
10 Feb: Oxford Zodiac 
12 Feb: Manchester Academy 3
13 Feb: Glasgow School of Arts 
14 Feb: Edinburgh Venue 
15 Feb: Leeds Cockpit 
17 Feb: Sheffield Leadmill 
18 Feb: Liverpool Academy 


SINGLE REVIEW: Archie Bronson Outfit - Kangaroo Heart (Domino)
The press release claims the Archie Bronson Etc were discovered by Domino's boss playing in his local, in a posh bit of London. Which is a good recommendation for his local - they're probably ace at playing pubs. They're not bad on record either, like a rockier version of the New Model Army (now there's a band due a revival, possibly). Despite having supported Steven Malkmus, they don't sound like him and that's also no bad thing these days (where did it all go wrong, Steve?) This is dirty, electric blues for the downtrodden to march on feudal castles to. AND it comes in at less than three minutes. Smart. MB
Release date: 23 Feb
Press contact: Wild [CP, CR] Coalition [RP, NP] Domino IH [RR] Force 5 {NR]


Evanescence singer Amy Lee yesterday attempted to close that opening rift with fans of fellow rock band Cold after those comments she made about the band's frontman. As previously reported, when Cold's guitarist Terry Balsamo jumped ship and joined Evanescence full time, Lee told an Australian reporter that this probably meant the end of Cold, implying the band's frontman Skooter Ward had too many drug problems to hold the band together on his own.

Earlier this week Ward hit back writing on his band's website: "I don't know why Amy threw my life out there like she did. I never did anything but treat her with respect but this is the life I choose and I understand not everything can be a secret. I just wish she would have let me tell my story when I was ready. As for Cold, we are releasing 'Wasted Years' soon. We are looking for a new guitarist and we will be starting our new record when we get off the road."

Following that statement Lee yesterday backtracked by writing on Cold's fan message board: "Dear Cold fans, I'm sure the last thing you want to hear right now is more of me running my mouth, so I'm going to make this short and simple. It was not my place to make statements about the status of Cold - Cold is not my band. I apologize. I've never claimed to be perfect and I'm not too proud to admit when I'm wrong."


The Pop Idol bubble doesn't seem to have burst in the US. The first edition of series three of American Idol, which aired on Fox on Monday night, attracted an average audience of 29 million - more than any edition of the second series and the highest debut show audience in the US this season.

Fox Entertainment President Gail Berman told reporters: "The idea that this show has opened bigger than its premiere last year is stunning to us. We had good (anecdotal) evidence that there was just so much interest in this program, but obviously we could have never predicted this response."


Those assets from the Beastie Boys long defunct record label Grand Royal which, as previously reported, are up for sale on an auction website, are failing to get as much interest as hoped. The highest bid as of last night was just $15,000 - the reserve price is $100,000. The assets include master tapes from Luscious Jackson, Russell Simmons and Sean Lennon; 300 copies of Beastie Boys 'Root Down' on vinyl and 80 ten inch vinyl records of Ben Lee's Noise Addict 'Young and Jaded'; and a whole load of paperwork including the original contracts signed by artists like Sean Lennon, Luscious Jackson and Bis.


An opposition party in Malaysia is calling for an upcoming Mariah Carey concert to be banned because she promotes "un-Islamic principles". 

Ahmad Sabki Yusof, leader of the Pan- Malaysian Islamic Party's youth wing, has written to his government saying: "Everyone knows Mariah Carey presents herself in a sexy, unacceptable and almost vulgar manner. Allowing such concerts promotes and condones values that are totally contrary to our way of life and our culture. We don't want immoral values for our children, whether Muslim or not." 

Carey has been given permission to perform at a 50,000-seater stadium in Kuala Lumpur on 22 Feb. 


As the British government is keen to remind us this week as they reclassify the status of cannabis - it's still a drug, it's still illegal and it's still bad for you. Presumably it's not a campaign to be fronted by Art Garfunkel who has been charged for the possession of marijuana after the drug was found in his jacket pocket when pulled over for speeding just outside New York. The police officer who stopped the car conducted the routine search after smelling the drug. Apparently the officer was unaware who he was arresting until Garfunkel told him he was a celebrity. Garfunkel is due in court on 28 Jan though a legal representative can attend in his place - he shouldn't face more than a $100 fine.

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