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TUESDAY 31 JULY 2012
APPROVED: R STEVIE MOORE - LO FI HIGH FIVES
A real-life showbiz sexagenarian, lo-fi treasure R Stevie Moore has 44 fertile years' worth of recordings to his name. I mean really, we're talking a discography of hundreds, if not thousands. Now, The Charlatans' Tim Burgess has collated twelve selected R Stevie recordings to make 'Lo Fi High Fives', a 'kind of best of' and basic means of re-packaging Moore's oeuvre for the uninitiated more>>
TOP STORIES
- US indies group calls for American remedies for Universal/EMI deal
- Industry welcomes Hooper's copyright hub report
IN THE POP COURTS
- Pussy Riot trial begins in Moscow
- Murray lawyers file appeal
ARTIST DEALS
- Bring Me The Horizon sign to RCA
RELEASE NEWS
- Kanye, Jay-Z, Charlotte Gainsbourg to feature on Jay Electronica debut
- Ellie Goulding sets release date for "break-up record"
- Bloc Party, Animal Collective share new singles
- Ólafur Arnalds previews techno EP
- Philco Fiction prepare to get personal
- Herbert Grönemeyer prepares to release debut English language album
GIGS & TOURS NEWS
- Slash to tour
- Dan Le Sac sets headline dates
- Spector list Spectour IV
THE MUSIC BUSINESS
- Demon announces Tabu deal
THE DIGITAL BUSINESS
- Century Media returns to Spotify
- Investment man interested in buying Grooveshark, making it legit
- Pirate Bay money wouldn't reach artists
THE MEDIA BUSINESS
- Spin loses editors as future is planned
AND FINALLY...
- Blur bullied "annoying" Alex James
EVENTIM, CLIENT ACCOUNT MANAGER
Eventim UK, part of CTS Eventim AG, the leading ticketing company in Europe, is looking for a Client Account Manager to join its London team. We need someone with experience of event ticketing and ticketing systems, who can build relationships with existing clients to grow Eventim's UK business.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.

   
ERA, JUNIOR COMMUNICATIONS AND MARKETING ASSISTANT
ERA is a UK trade association representing retailers of music, video and games in both the physical and digital space. Members range from Tesco, Amazon and HMV to Spotify, Lovefilm and 7digital. We are looking for a Junior Communications and Marketing Assistant focused on organising events such as Record Store Day, communications to members (websites, newsletters and yearbook) and general PR and social media support.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.

   
NERVE ARTIST MANAGEMENT, INTERN
Nerve Artist Management are looking for a bright, energetic and enthusiastic intern to join the team for a maximum six month placement. A fantastic opportunity for anyone looking to start working in the music industry - you will be at the heart of a busy office that manages high-profile bands and DJs, and also runs an in-house record label.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.

   
EMI, ONLINE PUBLICIST
EMI is seeking an online publicist to join its Artist Publicity Team to plan, manage and deliver online publicity campaigns for EMI artists across the Parlophone, Virgin, Music Services and catalogue rosters.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.
   
AIR MTM, DIRECT TO CONSUMER
Air MTM is seeking someone to join its management department in a Direct To Consumer role. Key roles and responsibilities include maintaining artists online presence, updating social network profiles and artist websites, creating web content, overseeing sales and distribution of merch for live gigs and online stores, and liaising with merchandise companies.

For more information including a full job description and how to apply click here.

US INDIES GROUP CALLS FOR AMERICAN REMEDIES FOR UNIVERSAL/EMI DEAL
Following Universal Music's proposal last week of a wide-ranging set of remedies to placate competition regulators in Europe who are considering the mega-major's bold bid to buy EMI, the trade body for the US independent sector, A2IM, has called for similar divestments to be ordered by regulators in America should they be thinking of green lighting the takeover deal, which they probably are.

In a statement, A2IM said: "With no divestitures or operating remedies proposed for the US - the world's largest music market and home to the vast majority of the technology companies who work with the music community - the negative impact on music consumers and emerging technology companies [of this proposed deal] is clear".

"Such market concentration will diminish healthy competition, providing one dominant market leader [with] damaging clout in terms of both consumer pricing and the means with which music is made available. Approval of such an acquisition with no US remedies will [also] further constrain [independent music] resources. We continue to join our European IMPALA independent music label colleagues in their concern over this acquisition and reiterate A2IM's opposition to this transaction".

As with IMPALA, A2IM's official viewpoint is that the regulator - the Federal Trade Commission in the US - should block the Universal/EMI merger outright, though many in the independent community on both sides of the Atlantic expect the deal to be ultimately approved, but want to see the maximum possible remedies attached to any approval, forcing Universal to sell of large chunks of EMI. As previously reported, proposed remedies in Europe include selling much of EMI's classical and jazz catalogue in the region, whole businesses in some territories, and the Parlophone and EMI/Chrysalis labels in the UK.

US competition regulators are traditionally less demanding than their European counterparts, though this deal has been put under a lot of scrutiny Stateside, and it remains to be seen whether any remedy negotiations will be required before Universal gets the all clear. As it currently stands, the mega-major still hopes to take full ownership of EMI's all important Capitol division in the US.

Responding to A2IM's latest statement, Universal noted the previously reported divide in the indie community, where some remain vehemently opposed to the Universal/EMI deal, but others have expressed no strong opinions one way or the other, while others still have spoken in favour of Universal taking ownership of the EMI record company (possibly with an eye to bidding for any EMI assets that regulators force to be sold).

The major said in a statement to Billboard: "[A2IM] clearly does not speak for the many indie labels and artists who have come out publicly in support of the deal. There is growing recognition that Universal Music's investment in EMI will create more opportunities for new and established artists, expand music output and support new digital services. Barriers to entry have evaporated in today's digital environment and there are more ways than ever for labels and artists to get their music out to fans. We are working with regulators around the world and are confident of winning approval".

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INDUSTRY WELCOMES HOOPER'S COPYRIGHT HUB REPORT
UK Music and the UK music industry's two collecting societies, PRS and PPL, have all welcomed a new report from Richard Hooper into how the 'digital copyright exchange' proposed by Ian Hargreaves in his government review of copyright law last year might work.

As previously reported, the exchange would aim to pull together data about copyright ownership from all the content industries, making it easier for those wishing to licence music or other copyright material to work out who they need to speak to, and how a licensing deal might be done.

The exchange, or 'copyright hub' in Hooper's words, funded in the main by the content industries, would also take on responsibility for copyright education, and would oversee issues around so called orphan works.

Hooper's report proposes tapping into existing copyright databases, and databases in development, in order to be able to better 'signpost' rights ownership, though where there are gaps in those databases rights owners would be able to register directly with the hub if they wanted to, possibly putting in place the framework for a future compulsory copyright registry (though this is rarely mentioned by rights owners or political types).

Hooper also proposes that the report's co-author Ros Lynch now lead a steering committee to put his proposals into action, possibly with a little government funding to get things going.

Welcoming Hooper's report, UK Music boss Jo Dipple told CMU: "The front-footedness of the British music industry has been rightly recognised in Richard's report. Our industry has shown great leadership in enabling the digital market place. But there is work to be done and UK Music has tasked itself to give the [government] an annual update on the proposals. It is very important that we work together to maintain the momentum this process has created. We look forward to hearing the government's response to specific proposals".

PRS chief Robert Ashcroft added: "We both welcome and support Richard Hooper's findings and will work with our partners in the industry to meet the challenges he identifies, providing a better licensing environment for all. Looking ahead, we believe that the copyright hub recommended by Hooper could place Britain at the very centre of the global, online market for the creative industries. Coupled with industry efforts for a Global Repertoire Database, it will prove to be a critical building block in what must inevitably be an international project".

And PPL boss Peter Leathem said: "In their very sensible report Richard Hooper and Dr Ros Lynch have understood the importance of robust data to support licensing in the digital age and the efforts that PPL, and its record company and performer members, have made on this front. Even though there is more to be done they have helpfully suggested building on such work to make both direct and collective licensing solutions even more compelling to businesses".

He continued: "PPL has also committed to continue to develop its licensing services and will collaborate with the wider music industry to achieve this. We are delighted that the progress the music industry has been making in delivering licensing models has been recognised, particularly at a time after the opening ceremony of the Olympics last Friday which demonstrated on a global stage the cultural value and commercial importance of music to the UK".

You can download Hooper's report here.

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PUSSY RIOT TRIAL BEGINS IN MOSCOW
Three members of Russian punk band Pussy Riot have gone on trial in Moscow, accused of "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred or hostility". All have pleaded not guilty.

The charge stems from an incident in February this year when the band performed a song in the Cathedral Of Christ The Saviour Of The Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow, protesting against Vladimir Putin ahead of elections that saw him win his third term as the country's president. Billed as a "punk prayer", the song called on the "Holy Mother, Blessed Virgin" to "throw Putin out".

The three women who went on trial yesterday, Maria Alyokhina, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Yekaterina Samutsevich, were arrested shortly after the performance, though all initially denied being members of the ten-strong band, who perform in masks. However, according to The Guardian, the defendants have now seemingly admitted involvement, and yesterday Tolokonnikova told the court that she was sorry if some people were offended by the protest, and that had not been their intention.

If found guilty, the women face up to seven years in prison. Many human rights campaigners have said that they do no hold out much hope of them being acquitted, but it is hoped that they will not be given lengthy jail terms. Activist Lyudmila Alexeyeva told The Guardian: "The court's decision will depend not on the law but on what the Kremlin wants".

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MURRAY LAWYERS FILE APPEAL
Lawyers working for Conrad Murray, the doctor convicted for causing the death of Michael Jackson through negligence, have filed papers with the Californian appeal courts. Reps for the incarcerated medic said Murray planned to appeal both his conviction and sentence almost as soon as he was convicted and sentenced.

According to WENN, legal papers filed this week by Murray's attorneys focus on the vial of propofol found at the scene after Jackson's premature demise in 2009.

As much previously reported, the late king of pop died from an overdose of the powerful anaesthetic, which he was taking to treat insomnia. The court that tried Murray ruled that the doctor had negligently administered the fatal dose of the drug to Jackson by intravenous drip, in a domestic setting with no monitoring equipment, and then carelessly left the unconscious singer alone.

Murray's defence team always claimed that Jackson self-administered the fatal shot of the drug. They want the appeal court to test whether there was any presence of lidocaine in the bottle in which the fatal shot of propofol was stored. Lidocaine is commonly mixed with anaesthetics by doctors to ease a patient's pain, and Murray would have done just that, the defence say. So if there is no trace of lidocaine, then that might point towards the self-administration theory.

The judge in Murray's original trial twice declined to order such tests. He was of the opinion that the evidence for self-administration was weak and, anyway, the prosecution always argued that even if Jackson had injected the fatal shot of propofol himself, Murray would still have been criminally negligent for allowing his patient to access the drug in a domestic environment.

It remains to be seen how the appeals court now responds.

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BRING ME THE HORIZON SIGN TO RCA
Metal five-piece Bring Me The Horizon have signed to Sony label RCA for a new LP, set for release in 2013. The band - whose last long player, the lengthily-titled 'There Is A Hell, Believe Me I've Seen It. There Is A Heaven, Let's Keep It A Secret', came out in 2010 - will also co-headline with Lostprophets on this year's Vans Warped Tour, as pauses at London's Alexandra Palace on 10 Nov.

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KANYE, JAY-Z, CHARLOTTE GAINSBOURG TO FEATURE ON JAY ELECTRONICA DEBUT
Jay Electronica - real name Timothy Thedford - has shared the tracklisting from his long-anticipated debut LP, 'Act II: Patents Of Nobility (The Turn)', which, despite the rapper signing to Roc Nation two years ago, is still without a release date.

Though lacking an ETA, we do know that the record is set to include guest spots from Kanye West, The-Dream, Sean 'P Diddy' Combs, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Roc Nation boss Jay-Z, so at least it looks worthy of the wait. Third track 'Life On Mars (@FatBellyBella)' also references Erykah Badu - a past Electronica collaborator and mother to Thedford's three year-old daughter - via her Twitter alias, so there's a chance she's on the record, too.

Late US president Ronald Regan and Serge Gainsbourg are also mentioned, as are 'cinematic' British band The Bullitts.

Tracklisting:

Real Magic feat Ronald Regan
New Illuminati feat Kanye West
Patents of Nobility
Life On Mars (@FatBellyBella)
Bonnie & Clyde guest starring Serge Gainsbourg
Dinner at Tiffanys (The Shiny Suit Theory) feat Charlotte Gainsbourg, Jay-Z & The-Dream
Memories & Merlot
Better in Tune with the Infinite feat Latonya Givens
A Letter to Falon
Road to Perdition feat Jay-Z
Welcome to Knightsbridge feat Sean Diddy Combs
Rough Love feat Kanye West
Run & Hide guest starring The Bullitts
Nights of the Roundtable (First Draft Skeleton)
10,000 Lotus Petals

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ELLIE GOULDING SETS RELEASE DATE FOR "BREAK-UP RECORD"
Ellie Goulding has announced that she'll release 'Halcyon', the sequel to her first LP 'Lights', on 9 Oct.

Billed by the singer - whose relationship with Radio 1 DJ Greg James ended back in January - as a somewhat inevitable "break-up record", it'll feature her version of Active Child's 'Hanging On', the downbeat Tinie Tempah duet she debuted earlier this month. Meanwhile, the lyric video for the album's official first single 'Anything Could Happen' will premiere via VEVO in a fortnight's time, a week prior to its release on 21 Aug.

Says Ellie, who since her split from James has been linked to American fratstep DJ Skrillex: "This album for me is a journey from dark into light, from confusion to understanding. I didn't set out to write a break-up record but I think it became one".

So whilst you're hanging on for 'Halcyon', what track more apt to listen to than... err, 'Hanging On'?

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EXAMPLE, BLOC PARTY, ANIMAL COLLECTIVE SHARE NEW SINGLES
So, Example, Bloc Party and Animal Collective have just shared tracks from their own individual and entirely unrelated LPs, and you're about to hear all three... albeit , crowbarred into a single article for convenience's sake. Sorry.

First to Example, who announced last week that 'Say Nothing' would be the first single from his forthcoming fourth album, and unveiled it on yesterday's Capital FM breakfast show. It will be released on 9 Sep, and you can listen to it here.

Next, Kele Okereke and co of Bloc Party, who are now previewing 'Day Four' as a precursor to their post-hiatus LP '4'. The album is out in all good record shops on 20 Aug, and here's 'Day Four' to occupy all ears in the interim.

Animal Collective have also debuted brand new audio in the form of 'Today's Supernatural'. It represents the first single taken from the Baltimore quartet's ninth LP, 'Centipede Hz'. AC's first studio album since 2009's 'Merriweather Post Pavillion', that's out via Domino on 3 Sep. Listen to it here.

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ÓLAFUR ARNALDS PREVIEWS TECHNO EP
Icelandic artist Ólafur Arnalds, who's known primarily for his folk compositions, is to release an EP as part of Kiasmos, his techno collaboration with musician Janus Rassmussen. Yes, techno.

Bearing the title 'Thrown', it's set for release by Erased Tapes on 24 Sep. In the meantime, you can preview its title track and remixes by 65daysofstatic and the just CMU approved FaltyDL via this SoundCloud player.

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PHILCO FICTION PREPARE TO GET PERSONAL
CMU approved Oslo-based trio Philco Fiction have announced that they will release their debut album, 'Take It Personal', through Something In Construction on 3 Sep. Released in Norway last year, the album features a solid collection of ambitious and inventive pop songs, pulled along by singer Turid Solberg's crisp vocals.

Check out the new Holy Strays remix of the group's debut UK single 'Portrait Of Silence' (along with the seven and a half minute original) here.

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HERBERT GRÖNEMEYER PREPARES TO RELEASE DEBUT ENGLISH LANGUAGE ALBUM
Here in the UK, you're probably more likely to have heard of him for his starring role in 'Das Boot' or for his Grönland record label, which he founded in 1999, but Herbert Grönemeyer has also been releasing records in his native Germany since 1979. In fact, his 2002 LP 'Mensch' is the biggest selling album in Germany of all time.

In September, Grönemeyer will release his fourteenth studio album, his first performed entirely in English. Entitled 'I Walk', it will be released through Grönland on 24 Sep. The first single, 'Will I Ever Learn', is released this week, featuring guest vocals from Antony Hegarty.

Watch the clip of the 'Will I Ever Learn' video here.

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SLASH TO TOUR
Slash has announced a tour in promotion of his sophomore solo LP, 'Apocalyptic Love'. The one time Guns N Roses and Velvet Revolver guitarist (and his top hat) will keep the following dates:

7 Oct: Edinburgh, Corn Exchange
8 Oct: Manchester, Apollo
9 Oct: Birmingham, NIA
11 Oct: London, Brixton Academy
15 Oct: Newcastle, Academy

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DAN LE SAC SETS HEADLINE DATES
Dan Le Sac has listed a fair quantity of tour dates to mark the recent release of his debut long player, 'Space Between The Worlds'. Billed as the 'Dan Le Sac & Friends' tour, it may feature appearances from Merz, Emmy The Great's Emma-Lee Moss, Sarah Williams White, B Dolan and ex-Pete & The Pirates man Pete Hefferan along the way, since they were all guests on the album. But then again, it may not (but most likely will).

If you'd like to read more about Dan Le Sac in the context of his LP, maybe give this CMU interview a read.

And now, the dates:

1 Oct: Brighton, Coalition
3 Oct: Chelmsford, Hodga
4 Oct: Norwich, Waterfront
6 Oct: Oxford, Academy 2
8 Oct: Swansea, Sin
11 Oct: Portsmouth, Wedgewood Rooms
12 Oct: Guildhall, Gloucester
13 Oct: Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach
15 Oct: Leicester, Academy
16 Oct: Preston, 53 Degrees
17 Oct: London, Barfly, Camden
18 Oct: Manchester, Club Academy
19 Oct: Sheffield, Leadmill
20 Oct: Hull, Welly Club
21 Oct: Lincoln, Engine Shed
24 Oct: Leeds, Brudenell Social Club
25 Oct: Newcastle, Northumbria Uni
28 Oct: York, The Ducess
29 Oct: Reading, Sub89
31 Oct: Guildford, Boileroom

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SPECTOR LIST SPECTOUR IV
Indie opportunists Spector have booked an 18-date tour in advance of - and named after - the 13 Aug release of their new LP 'Enjoy It While It Lasts'. They just love a tour, do Spector.

Swim Deep, Splashh and LULS (?!) will join Fred Macpherson and band at various stages of the outing. All three acts, meanwhile, will be present at its London finale on 10 Nov.

Tour dates:

11 Oct: Glasgow, Oran Mor
12 Oct: Aberdeen, Tunnels
13 Oct: Dundee, Doghouse
14 Oct: Carlisle, Brickyard
16 Oct: Liverpool, Academy 2
17 Oct: Preston, 53 Degrees
18 Oct: Sheffield, Leadmill
19 Oct: Leeds, Stylus
25 Oct: Brighton, Concorde 2
26 Oct: Reading, Sub 89
27 Oct: Nottingham, Rescue Rooms
28 Oct: Norwich, Waterfront
29 Oct: Portsmouth, Wedgewood Rooms
31 Oct: Newcastle, Academy 2
1 Nov: Leicester, Academy 2
2 Nov: Manchester, Ritz
3 Nov: Stoke, Sugarmill
5 Nov: York, Duchess
6 Nov: Darlington, The Hub
7 Nov: Birmingham, Institute Library
8 Nov: Gloucester, Guildhall
10 Nov: London, Shepherds Bush Empire

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DEMON ANNOUNCES TABU DEAL
Catalogue label Demon Music Group has announced a new deal with Tabu, the US label founded in the mid 1970s by American music and movie exec Clarence Avante, which owns various recordings from the likes of Alexander O Neal, SOS Band and Cherrelle. UK-based Demon will have CD, digital and licensing rights over the catalogue under the new agreement.

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CENTURY MEDIA RETURNS TO SPOTIFY
Almost exactly a year since it announced that it was pulling all of its content off Spotify, US metal label Century Media has returned its catalogue (along with those of sub-labels InsideOutMusic, Superball Music and People Like You Records) to the streaming platform.

As previously reported, the label issued a statement last August saying that it was "of the opinion that Spotify in its present shape and form isn't the way forward", but that the company "also believes that [the streaming service] is a great tool to discover new music" and therefore the label was "in the process of reintroducing our bands to Spotify by way of putting up samplers of our artists".

But it then added: "Physical sales are dropping drastically in all countries where Spotify is active. Artists are depending on their income from selling music and it is our job to support them to do so. Since the artists need to sell their music to continue their creativity, Spotify is a problem for them. This is about survival, nothing less, and it is time that fans and consumers realise that for artists it is essential to sell music to keep their heads above water".

However, in a statement yesterday confirming his company would more fully embrace Spotify once again, Don Robertson, President of Century Media's North American division, told CMU: "We respect that music fans want to have instant access to our catalogue via Spotify. But we also have to consider the rights of our artists. After practicing some due diligence, we're moving ahead confident that both the artist and the fan are being fairly served by this developing platform".

Meanwhile Antje Lange, General Manager of the company's European office added: "Spotify offers great tools to discover new artists. We feel that this is essential for our promising newcomers. In that respect, Spotify gives those artists a very good forum".

Getting in on the quoting action, Spotify' Head of Content Steve Savoca also said: "Spotify's global growth provides a powerful platform for artists to connect directly with our hugely passionate audience. The return of Century Media's fantastic catalogue is cranking metal music to our ears".

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INVESTMENT MAN INTERESTED IN BUYING GROOVESHARK, MAKING IT LEGIT
According to C-Net, Avi Faliks of a company called Spring Mountain Capital has approached Grooveshark about the possibility of acquiring the often controversial digital music company.

The tech site says Faliks has proposed buying the Grooveshark business and reinventing the service so that it is more like Spotify, ie only music provided by labels would be available, and users would not be able to upload their own music collections to the platform.

He would then hire music lawyer Gary Stiffelman to negotiate with the major labels that are currently suing Grooveshark, arguing that with the 'user-upload' element of the service removed, the majors may be willing to play ball, given the size of the firm's userbase.

However, says C-Net, Faliks' approaches have, so far, been rebuked by Grooveshark owner Escape Media, which is possibly in talks with another possible buyer, interested in the firm despite its various legal woes.

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PIRATE BAY MONEY WOULDN'T REACH ARTISTS
If the record industry ever gets its share of the 550,000 euros that the founders of The Pirate Bay were ordered to pay the entertainment business in damages by the Swedish courts, the money would stay with the International Federation Of The Phonographic Industry, according to Torrentfreak, who say they have seen a confidential internal document published by the global record industry trade body.

Torrentfreak says that the IFPI document reveals that "there is an agreement that any recovered funds [from The Pirate Bay four] will be paid to IFPI Sweden and IFPI London for use in future anti-piracy activities".

That move will likely anger the artist community, which has been critical in the past of the tendency of major labels to keep damages (directly or via their trade bodies) paid by file-sharing companies which lose in copyright litigation, even though artists too have lost income from the illegal sharing of music online. The tech and file-sharing community will also latch onto the revelation, given the record industry is always keen to stress it represents artists as well as corporates when fighting copyright infringement and organisations accused of enabling piracy.

Of course it should be noted that so far no money has been collected from the four men found guilty of copyright infringement for their involvement in the Bay. The three founders have no money (and one is AWOL), so are unlikely to ever contribute to the damages amount. Their wealthy funder, also found guilty, will presumably have access to funds, but has so far seemingly resisted handing anything over.

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SPIN LOSES EDITORS AS FUTURE IS PLANNED
Some senior editorial staff departed American music magazine Spin on Friday following its acquisition by Buzzmedia earlier this month. Speculation continues that - with Buzzmedia a web-based publisher - the print edition of Spin will be phased out, and the magazine's new publisher has confirmed there will be no November/December issue this year. However, management insist that no decision has as yet been made regards the long-term future of the printed Spin, and that a revamped physical product could as yet be announced.

Editor-In-Chief Steve Kandell, Managing Editor Catherine Davis, Associate Editor Melissa Giannini and Spin.com News Editor Devon Maloney were among those laid off on Friday. Buzzmedia confirmed the layoffs yesterday, but noted that a team of 25 remain, and that that team will be grown further once the future direction of the brand has been finalised.

The publisher's statement read: "We are retaining a powerful Spin team of 25. Specifically, Charles Aaron, who leads editorial efforts across all of Spin, will continue in his role as Editorial Director. In the coming year, we will build upon this core staff by doubling the editorial team. This investment will enable us to continue enhancing Spin's offerings, which includes making the Spin archive, an incredibly important part of music history, much more accessible".

It continued: "Buzzmedia and Spin are committed to moving forward with print, but we are still determining exactly how print fits in with Spin's multiple distribution points and growth initiatives. While we are early in this process, we have concluded that Spin's print offering will change after the September/October issue and we will not publish a November/December issue. Spin will continue to be led by a strong staff with deep experience in both digital and print. We look forward to sharing what the print offering will be going forward".

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BLUR BULLIED "ANNOYING" ALEX JAMES
Alex James - photographed here vying with his Big Feastival business partner, Jamie Oliver, for the title of 'world's most annoying food/music festival co-host' - has confessed to The Sun that he was infinitely more annoying in Blur's 1990s golden era, so much so that bandmates Graham Coxon, Damon Albarn and Dave Rowntree would punish him via blows to the face. Unimaginable, and yet true.

Speaking through 'tears of laughter' to The Sun, the jocular bassist remembers: "There was one time when I had two black eyes and a head butt in between. I think I was the most annoying! When I look back, I can see that it was no way to run a business but there was also real joy for all of us in playing music and that somehow ironed out all the fights".

He adds: "The main talent for a bass player is the haircut and turning up on time. I even had a haircut on the way in today, I was here on time and everyone else is fucking late".

Speaking in praise of the odd bout of in-band James-bashing, a 'fucking late' Graham Coxon added: "I think creative tension is misconstrued by a lot people. It's actually a really good thing. We were quite fortunate that we could all input ideas that would work. There's no such thing as musical differences with us".

The real reason Blur were talking to The Sun, by the way, was to discuss 'Blur 21', their deluxe 21-disc boxset. It's out now, so if you like deluxe 21-disc Blur boxsets, you should buy it. If not, don't.

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CMU Editor Andy Malt and CMU Business Editor Chris Cooke are both available to comment on music and music business stories. Together they have provided comment and contributions to BBC News, BBC World, BBC Radios 4, 5, 6music and Scotland, Sky News, CNN, Wired and the Associated Press. Email andy@unlimitedmedia.co.uk or chris@unlimitedmedia.co.uk.

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