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NET SECTOR FAILS IN SECOND ATTEMPT TO BLOCK UK THREE-STRIKES THROUGH COURTS
The three-strikes or 'graduated response' system - whereby ISPs will be forced to send warning letters to suspected file-sharers, with some sort of penalty at some point in the future against web users who ignore the warnings - is still yet to go live in the UK, of course, despite the DEA passing through parliament in 2010. The delay has been partly because of the judicial review proceedings, though there have been other issues around how exactly the process will work. Whether today's court decision will help speed up getting three-strikes actually launched, remains to be seen.
We are yet to get responses from the net sector, though various organisations representing the creative industries have issued statements welcoming the ruling, as follows...
Geoff Taylor, boss of record label trade body BPI: "The courts have confirmed, once again, that the Digital Economy Act is legal, proportionate and fair and can now be implemented. The ISPs' failed legal challenge has meant another year of harm to British musicians and creators from illegal file-sharing. The ISPs now need to work constructively with government and rightsholders to implement the Act".
Christine Payne, General Secretary of actor's union Equity: "Once again the court is on the side of the almost two million workers in the creative industries whose livelihoods are put at risk because creative content is stolen on a daily basis. Once again a judge has made it extremely clear that the Digital Economy Act is a fair, focused, proportionate and efficient system for consumers and the creative industry. Rather than individuals being hauled into court, the DEA makes it possible to conduct a mass consumer education programme. BT and TalkTalk need to stop fighting and start obeying the law".
THE ORCHARD CONSIDERING MERGER WITH IODA
Sony already owns half of the Independent Online Distribution Alliance and, according to reports, will exercise an option to buy the company outright before merging it with The Orchard. That would mean Sony would control at least 50% of the merged entity too.
The Orchard, which celebrates fifteen years in business this year, is currently owned by Dimensional Associates, the private equity arm of JDS Capital Management, which bought the distribution firm for a second time in 2009. Dimensional will remain a minority shareholder in the merged company, though Sony might have the option to buy it out down the line as well.
Both The Orchard and IODA offer digital distribution and marketing services, while the former also have sync and physical distribution units, meaning that - like INgrooves Fontana - both merged companies will offer stepped up one-stop-shop distribution and marketing services for indie labels and more established self-releasing artists.
Though The Orchard, IODA and Sony are yet to comment on this rumoured merger.
MONKEES LIKELY TO MISS BANDMATE'S FUNERAL TO AVOID MEDIA CIRCUS, BUT CONSIDERING MEMORIAL SHOWS
Commenting on Jones' upcoming funeral service, fellow Monkee Micky Dolenz told Billboard: "My understanding is they [Jones' family] want to avoid a media circus and the family wants to keep it very, very low-key and very, very private. You can imagine as soon as one or two or any of us were to show up, it would very quickly be degraded into something that I don't think his immediate family would want to deal with. So I'm kind of respecting their wishes, whatever their wishes may be".
Dolenz added that public memorial events in New York and the UK - Jones being from Manchester - were a possibility, maybe involving all three of his former bandmates, including Michael Nesmith who sat out of the most recent Monkees reunion. Though he added that it was too soon to confirm anything on that front, adding that he and his bandmates were still in shock at Jones' sudden passing.
Other than possible one off memorial shows, though, Dolenz said he thought any future Monkees reunion was now unlikely. He told the trade mag: "I can see us getting together to do a memorial concert, of course, but right now I can't imagine anything else happening without the Manchester Cowboy".
ADAM LAMBERT SETTLES WITH FORMER LABEL
As previously reported, the company sued the former 'American Idol' loser last November, claiming he breached earlier contracts with it by signing to Sony's RCA label after appearing on the telly talent show. The label went legal after reps for Lambert tried to have early work from the singer, dating from 2007 and 2008 and released by CPE, taken off Amazon.
But last week Colwel announced that it had reached a settlement with the singer, who, the company said, had assured it he would not try to block the future distribution of the Lambert record it released, called 'Beg For Mercy'. With that in mind the lawsuit against the singer has been dismissed.
CPE said in a statement: "The Colwel Platinum Entertainment lawsuit against Adam Lambert has been resolved. Adam has withdrawn any objections to the release of 'Beg For Mercy' and he has approved the use of his songs and performances in these pre-Idol recordings, which are interpretations of his artistic vision at the time".
When CPE's lawsuit was first filed, it was suggested that Lambert just taking part in 'Idol' put him in breach of their contract, and that that would in turn breach the TV show's own rules, but reps for the company now say that they never made that allegation as part of their litigation. Clarifying that point, CPE said: "[We never] stated that Adam was not eligible to participate in 'American Idol' when he did so and regret that the lawsuit's allegations were misinterpreted".
So that's a relief, now Adam can do his best Freddie Mercury impression in front of a crowd of metal heads without having to worry that his time on 'American Idol' will be tarnished in their minds in any way.
BMG CHRYSALIS SIGNS FRANK TURNER
Says BMG Chrysalis UK VP of A&R Ben Bodie: "This is a significant signing of an artist who is clearly on the verge of a major breakthrough. If you look at what is happening in the album market, it's all about proper artists with real songs. Frank is a real contemporary artist, an exceptional songwriter with a unique vision all his own".
BMG Chrysalis UK Senior Vice-President Alexi Cory-Smith added: "There is lots more to come. The music business has changed. Writers want a new alternative. BMG Chrysalis is proving it has the resources, the technology and the creative vision to provide that alternative".
TEMPER TRAP PUTTING FINAL TOUCHES ON ALBUM TWO
Guitarist Lorenzo Sillitto told Triple J Magazine: "I think the exciting part about it is that when you have one record it's very limiting as to what sort of [live] set you can do, and so we're excited about expanding the set and being able to play a little longer, being able to change it up. We've recorded seventeen songs, obviously not all [of those] will go on the record, but it'll give us a lot of leeway when it comes to playing the shows".
Asked to pick out a highlight from the new songs, he added: "There's a song called 'Trembling Hands', it's probably the closest thing to the stuff on the last record. It has a really anthemic feel to it, and Dougie's vocals really get up there and soar from start to finish. We're all pretty excited about that one. It's a good step back in, cos we have made some changes. We've tried to broaden our sound a little bit".
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RADIOHEAD ANNOUNCE UK ARENA SHOWS
And the UK dates are:
6 Oct: Manchester, Evening News Arena
20 Mar: Sheffield, Students' Union
SLEEP PARTY PEOPLE ANNOUNCE TOUR
Says singer and multi-instrumentalist Brian Batz of the band's very first album 'We Were Drifting On A Sad Song', out 9 Apr: "It's about enjoying life and turning every position you're put into, into something positive. I know it's a cliché, but that's an important message to get out instead of always being so god damn melancholic and sad, which I sometimes struggle with".
You can preview new Sleep Party single 'Chin', which is slated for release on 26 Mar, shortly after these tour dates:
16 Apr: Manchester, The Castle Hotel
PURE LOVE TO PLAY LONDON DATE
The duo, who are now at work on a debut album slated for release this year by Vertigo Records, will appear on 29 May at London's Scala for a one-off date.
FESTIVAL LINE-UP UPDATE
BEACONS, Funkirk Estate, Skipton, Yorkshire, 17-19 Aug: Fresh festival additions Patrick Wolf, Maya Jane Coles, Outfit, Clock Opera and Kwes join the likes of Roots Manuva, Ghostpoet, Willy Mason, Cass McCombs and King Krule on an increasingly busy Beacons bill. www.greetingsfrombeacons.com
CREAMFIELDS, Daresbury Estate, Halton, Cheshire, 24-26 Aug: Co-headlining DJs Avicii, Deadmau5, David Guetta lead a vast initial roster set to descend on dance-music mecca Creamfields this year, as will also feature Skrillex, Ferry Corsten, Paul Van Dyk, Calvin Harris, Axwell, Benga & Youngman, Major Lazer, Annie Mac, Zane Lowe and Steve Aoki. www.creamfields.com
DEER SHED, Baldersby Park, Topcliffe, Yorkshire, 20-22 Jul: Saint Etienne, Los Campesinos!, Malco, Cashier No 9, The Staves, Paul Thomas Saunders and Ellen And The Escapades are all guaranteed new entries to Deer Shed's third annual billing, with Villagers, Cherry Ghost, Dutch Uncles and Beth Jeans Houghton And The Hooves Of Destiny amongst those previously confirmed. www.deershedfestival.com
HAMPTON COURT PALACE FESTIVAL, Hampton Court Palace, Surrey, 13-24 Jun: Van Morrison, Squeeze and Marc Almond are the latest subjects added to this rather regal Hampton Court concert season, whose programme has been hitherto ruled by Liza Minnelli, Katie Melua, Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons, James Morrison, Caro Emerald, Jools Holland and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. www.hamptoncourtpalacefestival.com
RELENTLESS BOARDMASTERS, Watergate Bay, Cornwall, 8-12 Aug: With Saturday and Sunday headliners represented by ever reliable festival fixtures Ed Sheeran and Dizzee Rascal, this year's Boardmasters bill will also house The Ting Tings, Maximo Park, Zane Lowe, The Big Pink, DJ Fresh, Redlight and Maverick Sabre. www.boardmasters.co.uk
FREE TIPS FROM CMU, LATEST TRAINING COURSES UPCOMING
New nuggets of information will be posted regularly on the site, most pulled from the popular CMU Training seminars, over time creating a great library of tips and information for anyone working in music. Some will provide beginners guide background information, others concise summaries of key principles for those already working in the industry, and others still an outline of best practice and current trends in different areas of the music business.
Says CMU Publisher Chris Cooke: "Many people in the music industry have never had formal training, and often their on-the-ground experience is focused on one strand of the business. These tips, and our training courses, help such people focus more formally on how their part of the sector works, and to learn about the other people and companies operating elsewhere in the wider music industry. And, of course, this is a business in a state of flux, and our training team have access to intelligence on the very latest trends and developments".
The first entry into the CMU Tips library - a brief outline of how artists can turn intellectual property into money - comes from the CMU Training course on 'Revenue, Investment & Deals In The New Music Business', an exciting one-day seminar that looks at how music can be monetised, the companies who work with artists in that process, and the partnerships and deals (past, present and future) they need to strike to make that happen. This course next happens next week, on Wed 14 Mar, and places are still available via www.thecmuwebsite.com/cmutraining-businessmodels/
For information on other training courses, and to access the new CMU Tips Library, check out www.thecmuwebsite.com/training/
LIVE NATION APPOINTS SOUTH COAST GM FOR GUILDHALL AND ACADEMY VENUES
Fields has worked at the Southampton Council owned and Live Nation managed Guildhall for eighteen years. She will continue to coordinate the venue's operations, while also overseeing the O2 branded Academy venue in Bournemouth, part of the Academy Music Group in which Live Nation is a key shareholder. Existing Academy staffer Nikki Miles will be promoted to the role of Venue Manager at the Bournemouth facility, reporting to Fields.
Confirming the new Area GM role and Fields' appointment to it, the CEO of Live Nation's venues division, Graham Walters, told CMU: "Mandy has an excellent reputation in the local community as well as with national promoters and knows the intricacies of the south coast entertainment scene. With a sound commercial knowledge and business acumen, she will extend that experience to developing the diary in Bournemouth".
Fields herself added: "After almost two decades of working at Southampton Guildhall, I know how important it is to attract a cross-section of events and what the challenges are in the area. As well as high profile gigs, we will look to accommodate more comedy, private hires and dance events. I'm very much looking forward to working alongside Academy Music Group and introducing our client partners to O2 Academy Bournemouth, building relationships and developing links and ideas with the new team".
The move follows a recent Southampton Council decision to renew Live Nation's management contract at the Guildhall venue until 2018.
SARAH RICHARDSON RETURNS TO ANORAK
Richardson told CMU: "I'm extremely excited to be returning to Anorak after my stint in the US, particularly to spearhead this new department that already has so much promise. I will bring with me a greater understanding of audiences across both sides of the Atlantic, and be able to offer a truly international outlook in my PR campaigns".
INSANE CLOWN POSSE LAUNCH FACEBOOK RIVAL
As the name would suggest, JuggaloBook mimics Facebook in terms of design, and claims to be "the fastest growing, freshest site on the net". I have seen no evidence that those claims are true, but you can check for yourself at www.juggalobook.com.
COMPOSERS FILE COMPLAINT ABOUT BROADCASTERS WITH EC
Broadcasters are presumably increasingly seeking ownership of original music created for their programmes to reduce the licensing work required every time they find new routes to exploit archive content. One issue for broadcasting companies in the digital domain is that capitalising on new distribution platforms with old programmes has often required returning to past collaborators who have a stake in part of that content to secure new rights, work which can make pursuing new distribution opportunities unviable. Some broadcasters may also have ambitions to directly exploit music created for their TV shows.
But composers say that royalties earned on future use of their TV work, whether via ownership of the rights in it, or at least some kind of contractual royalty arrangement, have traditionally been essential, alongside initial commission fees, to ensure composers have an income they can live off. Giving up copyrights on new commissions can cost composers over 50% of their future revenue, the Alliance claims, which for many makes it impossible to operate as a jobbing composer.
The Alliance want the European Commission to get involved on the basis that there are relatively few major broadcasters in Europe, giving them an overly dominate position, and enabling them to pursue unfair 'Give Up Your Rights Or Fuck Off' policies (my term, in case you wondered). The European Commission's Directorate General For Competition must now decide whether the Alliance's complaint falls within their remit and, if they do, a fuller investigation into the situation may follow.
OFCOM TO INVESTIGATE JAZZ FM PORN BROADCAST
As previously reported, during an edition of 'Funky Sensation with Mike Vitti' on 18 Feb, someone at the station managed to play about five minutes of porn over the top of the broadcast as it went out at 7.15pm.
Jazz FM described the incident as being due to an "unauthorised access to the live feed", which was vague enough to make it sound like someone might have hacked into the station's system and piped the sex noise in maliciously. Luckily, Vitti was also on hand to provide a statement, informing us that "there was unauthorised activity and behaviour in the studio".
According to The Guardian, OfCom received three complaints about the broadcast. If it finds Jazz FM to have been in breach of the watchdog's codes then the station may receive a fine. While we wait to find out what OfCom decides, let's all listen to that dirty broadcast again: radiofail.wordpress.com/2012/02/19/studio-porn-fail/
LA TOYA JOINS THE FAKE JACKSON LYRICS CONSPIRACY
Various people speculated that some vocals on 'Michael' had been provided by an impersonator when the record was released in 2010, though those officially associated with the album denied all such claims. And, of course, after the Paris Jackson video surfaced last week, she subsequently took to Twitter to distance herself from the comments in it, insisting she was now certain all the vocals on 'Michael' had been recorded by her dad.
But La Toya says that Paris wasn't so certain when the record was first released, and that she also doubts the authenticity of some of the singing on the long player. Speaking on US TV show 'The Talk', La Toya said: "I haven't heard the complete album but I do know [that on] some of the songs that I have heard it is definitely not his voice".
Recalling a conversation with Paris at the time the record was released, she adds: "During that time I was doing 'The Apprentice' and Paris called me and said: 'Aunt La Toya, I want you to listen to something... You gotta listen to this, this is not daddy's voice'. She played it for me and I go: 'Paris, you're right, it's not'. And I kept listening, and kept listening, and it was not his voice and she was so concerned about it and she said: 'We gotta put a stop to this. We must to put a stop to this. And I'm not gonna let them [the album's label and producers] get away with this'".
Assuming that conversation did take place, it's not clear what convinced Paris her initial reaction to 'Michael' was wrong.
UNLIKELY RELEASE RUMOUR ROUND-UP: CHERYL COLE MAY BORROW LANA DEL REY TRACK, WHILE DOHERTY CONTEMPLATES HIP HOP REMODEL
A source informs The Sun of Chez's chosen track, which is described as an "urban, mid-tempo ballad": "Cheryl is a big fan of Lana and was intrigued to hear she had lots of songs written which she wasn't going to sing herself. She got hold of one and was really taken with it".
It seems we can tentatively await Cole's new album, which is said to feature collaborations with such sundry music celebs as Eminem and Nicki Minaj, later this year.
The Sun, the sharp-eyed tabloid that it is, has also sparked a very strange rumour regarding Pete 'no more injecting drugs for me, thanks' Doherty, reporting that the pasty-faced former Libertine has set about rebranding himself as a hip hop artiste. Doherty is alleged to have enlisted The Streets' Mike Skinner for the venture, and to have bought several tracksuits to look the part.
It's over to that mysterious Sun source again, who says of Doherty: "He has actually said he wants to be Britain's answer to Eminem. He has told us he's started writing hip hop songs".