CMU’s Frequently Asked Questions
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01 What is CMU?
02 Why was CMU set up?
03 How do I access CMU?
04 Why should I subscribe to the CMU Daily?
05 Why should I subscribe to CMU Premium?
06 What content also appears on the CMU website?
07 Who makes CMU?
08 How do you make money?
09 Why is so much of CMU free to access?
10 Can we use your content?
11 Where do you get your news from?
12 How do I get you to write about my band?
13 How do I get you to ‘approve’ my music?
14 How do I get my band or company interviewed?
15 I subscribed to the CMU Daily but am no longer getting it – how come?
16 How do I unsubscribe from a CMU bulletin?
17 How do I change the email address I receive CMU bulletins to?
18 How can I get a job at CMU?
19 How can I get an internship at CMU?
20 Why do you never answer my emails or return my calls?
21 Who created CMU?
01 WHAT IS CMU?
CMU supports the music community through a news and information service, a training and consultancy business, and an education programme for future talent.
COMPLETE MUSIC UPDATE is a news and information provider to the music industry, covering music, music people and the music business, and championing great new artists and releases. CMU provides seriously good news and analysis that never gets too serious, with both freemium and premium content available, including the CMU Daily, CMU Podcast, CMU Digest and CMU Trends.
CMU INSIGHTS is a leading provider of training and consultancy to the music industry and companies working with music. We offer seminars, masterclasses and conference sessions, and our own conference at The Great Escape festival each May, plus a range of in-house training, research and consultancy services.
CMU:DIY is a music industry education programme. We provide tips and advice for aspiring artists and songwriters, and future music business talent, through online resources and regular workshops.
02 WHY WAS CMU SET UP?
CMU was created in 1998 to bring together everyone working in music, from the suits at the biggest music, digital and media firms, to the people keeping it very real in the grass roots music community – whether they be artists, songwriters, gig or club promoters, bedroom producers or label owners, bloggers, fanzine editors, college-based DJs, radio presenters or music critics, or simply those obsessive and vocal music fans which marketing types like to call ‘opinion formers’.
Eighteen years on, we continue to provide all these people with an ‘insider guide’ to the music business and all it creates – ensuring everyone has equal access to information on all the latest corporate wheelings and dealings, copyright shenanigans, digital music innovations, streaming upturns and retail downfalls, media and label launches and revamps, appointments, signings, releases, tours, litigation, arrests, feuds, fisticuffs and incidents of tabloid note, the drinking, the drug taking, the inappropriate remarks, and, let’s not forget, the creation, launch and response of and to the very finest new music, of all kinds.
As you can see, it’s quite a wide remit. We keep ourselves busy.
03 HOW DO I ACCESS CMU
Our primary output is the CMU Daily. Published daily since 2002 and now read by over 25,000 music people, this is the one-stop email bulletin with all the latest music news – rounding up everything of note that has happened in music in the last 24 hours. The Daily is free – to subscribe click here.
You can also access all the content from the CMU Daily for free here online on the CMU website. You can read all our business and artist news, or browse by news section, plus read the features and check out the weekly CMU Podcast. There are also the news timelines, monitoring key stories as they develop.
In addition to all that, there is our premium service, which provides busy music business professionals with the CMU Digest, a concise summary of the biggest stories from the music business week just gone, and CMU Trends, regular reports that analyse key developments in the music business and explain how different aspects of the industry work. A premium subscription is just five pounds a month and you can sign up here.
04 WHY SHOULD I SUBSCRIBER TO THE CMU DAILY?
The CMU Daily is aimed at anyone working in music – and we define that very widely.
You may work for a record company, or a music publisher, or a concert promoter, or a streaming or download platform, or a music retailer, or a radio station, or a music magazine, or a management, booking or PR agency, or a music legal firm. If so, the CMU Daily is for you.
You may be an artist, a musician, a songwriter, a producer, a studio engineer, a DJ, a designer, a stylist, a journalist or a head of music. If so, the CMU Daily is for you too.
You may work for a brand that sponsors music, or a company that works on the peripheries of the music business. You might run a fanzine or write a music blog, or stage occasional club nights, or run a record label out of your kitchen. Or you might just be someone who is hugely passionate about their music. Either way, you guessed it, the CMU Daily is for you.
To put it another way: the music business continues to evolve rapidly, which makes it a very exciting industry, but also a very chaotic and unpredictable place to be. If you want to work in that industry, in a creative or corporate capacity, you need to know what’s happening across the wider music world. The CMU Daily is the simple way to have that knowledge. Plus we’ll let you know what Justin and Kanye, and Calvin and Adele, and Rihanna and Pharrell, and Taylor and Tyler, and the boys who once sang as One Direction have been up to.
There’s more details about the CMU Daily and how to subscribe here.
05 WHY SHOULD I SUBSCRIBE TO CMU PREMIUM?
Our premium service provides busy music business professionals with a concise weekly overview of key stories and events, and regular CMU trends reports that analyse key developments in the music business and explain how different aspects of the industry work.
The CMU Digest and CMU Trends are both designed to help busy music people hone in on the developments that really matter, and to provide them with extra insight and knowledge into everything that goes into making, marketing, distributing and monetising great music in 2016.
Premium subscribers also support the free news and information services we provide to the wider music industry, enabling us to bring together the whole music community.
There are more details about CMU Premium and how to subscribe here.
06 WHAT CONTENT ALSO APPEARS ON THE CMU WEBSITE?
All the news stories, features, approved columns and job ads from the CMU Daily are also available here online.
You can read all our business and artist news, or browse by news section, plus read our features and check out the weekly CMU Podcast. There are also the news timelines, monitoring key stories as they develop. The jobs ads are here.
07 WHO MAKES CMU?
CMU is owned by 3CM UnLimited, a media business based in Shoreditch, East London which operates independent publishing company UnLimited Media, education business UnLimited Learning and music and media consultancy UnLimited I&C.
3CM UnLimited is wholly owned by its two directors, Chris Cooke and Caro Moses. CMU is edited and run by its Editor Andy Malt, while the aforementioned Chris Cooke provides a lot of the music industry coverage as Business Editor. The rest of the CMU team are introduced here.
08 HOW DO YOU MAKE MONEY?
Aha, a good question, well done.
CMU Jobs, one of the UK music industry’s most effective recruitment channels, is a key revenue generator, while we also offer banner ad and sponsorship packages to music companies. More information here.
Our premium subscribers – who benefit from extra content and services – are also key, and their subscriptions also enable us to continue offering so many free services to the wider music community.
The acclaimed CMU Insights training and consultancy business also brings in revenue, helping us provide the main CMU news and information services free of charge.
09 WHY IS SO MUCH OF CMU FREE TO ACCESS?
Did we mention that we’re lovely?
CMU’s core media are free because, well, that’s the point. CMU has always set out to bring together the wider music community, including those at the grass roots who can’t necessarily afford to pay for their trade media.
And where we do charge for premium content and training sessions we try to keep our prices as competitive as possible.
10 CAN WE USE YOUR CONTENT?
We offer both free and paid-for syndication services to other media – print or online – interested in using our content. For information email email@example.com.
CMU publisher UnLimited Media also offers a wide range of other content services through its UnLimited I&C sister company. For more details click here.
11 WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR NEWS FROM?
Everyone asks this question. We monitor over 100 music, business, entertainment and general news sources (including newswires, newspapers, magazines and blogs) from around the world every single weekday to pick up on the big music stories. We also receive over 200 press releases each day, plus we get fed stories from our readers across the music and media industries.
Stories are selected based on their genuine newsworthiness and how widely they have been reported on elsewhere, and are added to by our own in-house music business, media and legal experts who analyse, contextualise and, if relevant, add comment to stories. Yes, even that one about Justin Bieber having a new hair cut.
We always endeavour to verify the accuracy of stories we run – and will always say so if we are dubious of a story even though it has been widely reported on.
Genre wise, we do our best to give coverage to all music genres, and as for what artists we regularly cover, well, obviously, we do sometimes prioritise stories involving CMU approved artists.
12 HOW DO I GET YOU TO WRITE ABOUT MY BAND?
Simple – email news stories and press releases to firstname.lastname@example.org. Obviously we get hundreds more press releases each week than we have space to report on, but we do check the musicnews inbox daily and pick out the best. Note – press releases are very unlikely to be seen if emailed directly to individual editors or journalists – but everyone in the editorial team monitors the musicnews inbox daily.
Your press release has more chance of making it as a story if all the text is in the body of the email (ie not as an attachment) and if the release includes a quote from the artist/company it is about. Whatever you do, DON’T SEND PDFs.
Though if you are a self-releasing band or a small independent label, don’t worry about drafting a full press release. When anything vaguely newsworthy happens email the basic details, a quote and any relevant factual information (eg release date, tour dates) – we are just as likely to report on a short email than a full blown press release. A link to some online music (eg a Soundcloud profile) is also useful.
To be considered for any of these it’s best to email a link to where we can stream and download your music, plus some background information and details of any upcoming releases, shows or other projects, to email@example.com.
14 HOW DO I GET MY BAND OR COMPANY INTERVIEWED?
We run regular interviews with music industry people as part of CMU Trends, and occasionally interview artists too about newsworthy projects to inform our reporting.
If artists or music companies you are working with are interested in being interviewed, let us know by emailing CMU Editor Andy Malt at firstname.lastname@example.org.
15 I SUBSCRIBED TO THE CMU DAILY BUT AM NO LONGER GETTING IT – HOW COME?
99 times out of 100 if you are not receiving the CMU Daily any more it is because something on your company’s server is blocking it.
This may be because there is some kind of block on emails coming from bulk mailing servers (we use the Constant Contact server) or some kind of ‘profanity’ filter which is blocking the Daily because we’ve quoted a musician saying "fuck" (which they’re prone to do). You should take this up with your company’s IT department.
If you are using a home email or webmail account, it could be a junk mail filter that is stopping the Daily getting through. If so, either add ‘email@example.com’ to your ‘safe list’ or find a copy of the Daily in your junk mail folder and mark it as ‘not junk mail’. If you need help doing this, or if that doesn’t work, then you should contact your email or internet service provider.
If after all this, you are still having problems, by all means email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will double check you are on our mailing list, and look if there are any problems we can see at our end.
16 HOW DO I UNSUBSCRIBE FROM A CMU BULLETIN?
Simple. At the bottom of every CMU bulletin you will see two hyperlinks that say ‘SafeUnsubscribe’. Simply click on one of these links. You will be taken to a web page where you can unsubscribe.
If you want to unsubscribe from ALL UnLimited Media email bulletins, just click ‘save changes’ on this form.
If you want to unsubscribe from SOME UnLimited Media email bulletins, but continue to receive others, then select ‘No’ on this form, and then put ticks next to those you wish to receive, and untick those you do not wish to receive, before pressing ‘save changes’.
17 HOW DO I CHANGE THE EMAIL ADDRESS I RECEIVE CMU BULLETINS TO?
Click on the ‘update profile’ link at the bottom of any edition of any CMU bulletin. You will be asked to confirm your email address.
You will then be sent an email, which will provide a link to your ‘personal profile’ on the UnLimited Media email bulletin server.
Here you can change your email address and pick which UnLimited Media email bulletins you receive.
18 HOW CAN I GET A JOB AT CMU?
We’re a small team but do occasionally recruit new staff members. If you email your CV to email@example.com we’ll keep your info on file.
New jobs will generally be advertised via CMU Jobs.
19 HOW CAN I GET AN INTERNSHIP AT CMU?
Unfortunately, because we are a small team, many of whom work remotely, we are not able to offer full internships. However, we can sometimes consider short work placements for music or media students. If this interests you, email firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll see what we can do.
20 WHY DO YOU NEVER ANSWER MY EMAILS OR RETURN MY CALLS?
It’s normally PR people who ask this question. CMU is a small but very very busy operation, with a daily deadline to meet.
We simply don’t have the time to respond to every email or phone call that is following up a press release – if we did respond to every email and every phone call we’d publish a lot less news stories and features.
So – we’re sorry. But we do check every press release sent to the musicnews email.
21 WHO CREATED CMU?
CMU was created in 1998 by Chris Cooke, Alastair Walker and Fraser Thomson with the aim of creating something that brought together everyone working in music and the music media, originally utilising the college network to reach the grass roots. This was done initially through a print magazine and, since 2002, through the CMU Daily and our other online media.
Chris continues to work for CMU to this day as Publisher and Business Editor, while Fraser remains a good friend of CMU since returning to his first love of radio.
Unfortunately Alastair is no longer with us. He died, quite suddenly, in August 2001 after suffering a heart attack brought on by diabetes – he was only 29. CMU’s eclectic, wide-reaching and sometimes bizarre music policy was created by Alastair, and we feel that while we continue to adopt that attitude to music – always looking for something a little bit different – his passion for music lives on. We marked the tenth anniversary of Alastair’s death in August 2011 by compiling a CMU playlist that we think demonstrates his eclectic music tastes.
Last Updated: June 2016