CMU Daily - on the inside 17 Dec 2003
yesterday's Daily - Daily archive

In today's CMU Daily:
- Zoe quits Xfm drivetime
- Auction website claims Beatles exclusive
- Sony reportedly cut into tour revenues
- Single Review: The Raveonettes - Heartbreeak Stroll/The Christmas Song
- Bowie reschedules US dates
- Jacko could be charged today
- Black Eyed Peas blokes say Fergie gets all the female attention
- Performers' organisations pick PPL to represent global royalty interests
- Busted top Smash Hits Poll
- Sharon says it will take Ozzy six months to recover
- Lastminute.com step up music operations
- Single Review: Hawksley Workman - We Will Still Need A Song
- Swiss police drop Manson investigation
- DJ Otzi in car crash
- Pop Idol judges disappointed that Sam was voted off
- Apple pass 25 million downloads mark
- Hear'say Klass wants classical industry to reinvent itself
- Robbie fans complain that naked picture wasn't naked enough 

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ZOE QUITS XFM DRIVETIME
Zoe Ball is stepping down as presenter of Xfm's drivetime show - her last show will be tomorrow afternoon. Ball has decided to quit the four days a week show to spend more time with son Woody - though her decision also means she won't be going head to head in the ratings war with best friend Sara Cox, who takes over the late afternoon slot on Radio 1 in the New Year. 

The drive time slot will be taken over by Lauren Laverne, the long-time Xfm presenter who has filled in for Ball on recent drive time shows. Commenting on her departure, Laverne's show and the new competition over at Radio 1, Ball told reporters: "Lauren will definitely give Coxy a run for her money in the afternoon who, let's face it, will probably be too busy worrying about her swollen ankles to concentrate on her show. I can't wait to spend more time with my son. I'll be able to do all the normal things again like take him to school and put him to bed. Basically, be a full-time mum."

Commenting on the new drive time appointment Xfm's new programming controller Andy Ashton said that Laverne would "effortlessly" rise to the challenge of taking on Radio 1. "Lauren is undoubtedly one of the most exciting radio DJ's out there. She was the obvious choice for the job having successfully covered for Zoe before. She's a ballsy, up-for-it northern lass and I know that she'll effortlessly rise to the challenge."

Zoe will present a new Friday night show on the station from early next year.

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AUCTION WEBSITE CLAIMS BEATLES EXCLUSIVE
An auction website claims to have a tape of a secret 1976 Beatles recording that took place at LA's Davlen Studios. Though the tape itself is blank because the band - who fell out during the recording - ordered it to be erased. 

momentsintime.com claims all four Beatles worked together in the studio in early November 1976. The site says: "In addition to the four Beatles, George Martin was also allegedly present. The names of five songs are listed on the Davlen Studios label on the tape: 1.'Happy Feeling' 2.'Back Home' 3.'Rockin Once Again' 4.'People Of The Third World' 5.'Little Girl'."

The site says that Len Kovner, former co-owner of Davlen Studios, can confirm the session took place and that the tape is the one used on the day. They add that according to rumour an unerased version of the tracks exists in the vaults of London's Abbey Road Studios. 

However, a spokesman for Paul McCartney wasn't convinced by the website's claims: "What reunion was that? I am not aware of any Beatles reunion in the 70s."

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SONY REPORTEDLY CUT INTO TOUR REVENUES
Well, it's been obvious for sometime that major labels would soon have to tap into revenues other than record sales to survive - and it seems Sony Music may be leading the way in bullying a share of ticket sales from their artists' tours. 

Insiders at Sony Music in America say the major is in the process of negotiating a cut of revenues from certain artists' live shows. Reports suggest Sony are specifically looking for a revenue return on those artist tours who receive marketing support from the label. In the past major labels have given financial 'tour support' to their artists on the basis that live activity can drive record sales. However it looks likely that Sony will now look to recoup that investment through a cut of ticket sales - a deal which would enable majors to make a profit on successful tours.

Up until now, of course, major labels have recouped all of their initial investment in any artist through the sales and licensing of recordings. As the profit margins on record sales decline - due to both the growth of digital downloads and recent CD price wars - many in the industry have expected labels to tap into other artist revenue streams which, in the past, have been owned by an artist's management and their associates.

Many now expect the other majors to follow suit in making demands on other income streams. While a number of key artist managers have said they accept this to be inevitable as music markets change, they are pushing for industry standards to be quickly developed governing the renegotiation of contracts to prevent smaller artists from being pressured into unfair deals.

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SINGLE REVIEW: The Raveonettes - Heartbreeak Stroll/The Christmas Song
(Sony/Columbia)
Yes. They sound like the Jesus and Mary Chain. Well done. Now go away. They sound less like JAMC than Black Rebel Thingy do. And they're better. 'Heartbreak Stroll' is the Beach Boys in leathers - it never lets up, never allows you to stop listening, and has the best Shadows geetar solo since Jet Harris went grey. 'The Christmas Song' is two minutes of prom night heartbreak: "I don't feel like going home now"... indeed. MB
Release date: 8 Dec
Press contact: Sony IH

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BOWIE RESCHEDULES US DATES
David Bowie - who finally began his North American tour at the weekend in Montreal - has rescheduled the US/Canada dates he was forced to cancel earlier this month due to a nasty bout of flu. Rescheduled dates as follows:

29 Mar: Philadelphia
30 Mar: Boston
1 Apr: Toronto
16 May: Fairfax
29 May: Atlantic City

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JACKO COULD BE CHARGED TODAY
Latest news on the ongoing Jackson child abuse allegations is that formal charges should be made at Santa Barbara Superior Court this afternoon, or tomorrow morning at the latest. As previously reported, charges are expected to relate to multiple counts of molestation of one child.

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BLACK EYED PEAS BLOKES SAY FERGIE GETS ALL THE FEMALE ATTENTION
The male members of chart toppers the Black Eyed Peas have been complaining that their female colleague Fergie gets more love interest from women than they do. The band's Will.i.am told MTV in Germany: "Do you know who gets the most attention from the women? Fergie. She gets more than we do. The freaky lesbians want her. All the time. At every show they ask us: "Hey, can we meet the singer? Your singer is so hot. I want to do it with her." Then we say: "And what about us?""

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PERFORMERS' ORGANISATIONS PICK PPL TO REPRESENT GLOBAL ROYALTY INTERESTS
Copyright body PPL yesterday announced it has made a deal with a number of performer associations to become the sole collecting agency for their members' global royalties. 

Under the deal with UK groups Aura, Pamra, the Music Producers Guild and the Musicians Union, PPL will be the sole contact between the various groups' membership and royalty bodies in other countries - including Germany's GVL, Portugal's GDA and France's Adami. The deal will cut the number of British agents dealing with those royalty societies.

In return for the monopoly PPL has pledged to ruthlessly pursue performers' royalties. They reckon they can secure their members much of the £60 million (GBP) they estimate is currently lost in royalty income due to confusion and oversight. 

Announcing the deal PPL chief Fran Nevrkla told reporters: "We will be pragmatic, but quick and hard-nosed. I think the overseas societies were hoping we would never get together like this because overnight things have changed."

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BUSTED TOP SMASH HITS POLL
Regular readers will know we're big Busted fans here at CMU, though we wouldn't go so far as proclaiming they were the Best Band In The World Ever. But Smash Hits readers were never known for have much musical appreciation past the pop scene of the last six weeks. 

That title is one of five awarded to the Busted boys in the 2003 Smash Hits Readers' Poll. They also picked up awards for Best Album and Best UK Band. 

Other favourites among the Smash Hits readership include Westlife (Best International Act), Girls Aloud (Hot New Talent), Gareth Gates (Best Male Solo Artist), Christina Aguilera (Best Female Solo Artist), Justin Timberlake (Most Fanciable Male), Beyonce (Most Fanciable Female) and Mark Owen (Comeback King). 

This year's winners have to make do with receiving their awards at a photo shoot - the traditional Smash Hits Poll Winners Party has been axed (rumour has it because a number of key American artists wouldn't come!).

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SHARON SAYS IT WILL TAKE OZZY SIX MONTHS TO RECOVER
Sharon Osbourne has told GMTV it will take six months for Ozzy to be back on his feet after that quad bike accident. 

She told the show: "He will be back, he's not going anywhere. He'll be ordering everybody around, don't worry. He's busy telling jokes all the time, he's already asked two nurses to marry him." She confirmed that Osbourne will have a seven-inch steel plate fitted in the back of his neck because of a cracked vertebra. 

On the accident he said: "He was just going across the land and he came to a bit that was uneven, the bike tipped over and bounced off his chest. He is so lucky, because if he hadn't been with his security guard Sam, he wouldn't be here because Sam had to revive him, in fact twice. When Sam got to him, he wasn't breathing and there was no pulse, and he got him back twice, so if he'd have been on his own we would have lost him."

On Ozzy's first ever UK number one single this week she said: "It's a dream come true for him. The first thing I told him when he came to was about his single. He couldn't speak but tears were coming out." 

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LASTMINUTE.COM STEP UP MUSIC OPERATIONS
Lastminute.com is stepping up its music division in a bid to enhance its position as a seller of gig tickets. Former NME projects director Ian Jenkinson has joined the company and is charged with the task of increasing the group's ticket allocations for music concerts. He will also work on event sponsorship.

Announcing Jenkinson's appointment the company's marketing director, Vijay Solanki, told reporters: "We're already a significant player in the rock and pop market having sold tickets to the likes of Justin Timberlake, The Strokes and Eminem, as well as over 10,000 tickets to each Robbie Williams, Paul McCartney and The Rolling Stones. However, there's still a need to raise our profile in this market and the deals that Ian can deliver will ensure we have a greater presence at key music events."

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SINGLE REVIEW: Hawksley Workman - We Will Still Need A Song (Universal/Island)
Should we judge a record by its cover? Mr Workman looks like a moody ponce on the front of this. There's been a lot of fuss about him, though, so perhaps he's allowed to brood in public. The single is not hugely strong, partly because of a sneaky suspicion that he sounds like Bono. It's a nice, uplifting pop song about songs, though, in the Ben Folds mould (or is that just the piano?). Track two, 'Addicted', is much more like it - it has an edge, like Tom Waits doing honky-tonk rock 'n' roll with swearing. He wants shooting for the six-minute (and a bit) cover of 'Love Will Tear Us Apart' though. Twice, just to make sure. MB
Release date: 19 Jan
Press contact: Universal IH [all]

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SWISS POLICE DROP MANSON INVESTIGATION
Police in Zurich have said they will not proceed with charges against Marilyn Manson. As previously reported, a Swiss religious group called Christians For Truth had accused the singer of inciting violence and breaking a Swiss law protecting religion during a gig in the city in Feb 2001. Police interviewed Manson before a more recent gig in Zurich in November with regards the religious groups' claims. Following that conversation with the singer the Zurich district prosecutor's office told reporters on Monday that it had found no evidence to back the allegations.

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DJ OTZI IN CAR CRASH
Austrian pop star DJ Otzi has been taken to hospital after being injured in a car crash. According to police reports Otzi, real name Gerry Friedle, crashed into another car after he failed to brake in time in icy conditions. Otzi, his passengers and the driver of the other car were all hospitalised, although no one's injuries were too serious.

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POP IDOL JUDGES DISAPPOINTED THAT SAM WAS VOTED OFF
Pop Idol judges Pete Waterman and Neil Fox have spoken out against the show's viewers' decision to oust favourite finalist Sam Nixon off the show. Both judges seemed to think Nixon was the obvious winner - Waterman in particular has previously questioned new favourite Michelle McManus' ability to pull it off as a pop idol. Meanwhile both question the appeal of Mark Rhodes, the Brummy everyone expected to be voted off last Saturday who is now in the final. 

Waterman says Rhodes is "far out of his depth" and adds: "Obviously, this show is not about talent or singing any more." 

Fox said "If he [Rhodes] is the Pop Idol, then that will be very disappointing. There was nothing that Mark did on Saturday to make me think he should be in the final. From what I saw, I thought Sam deserved to win the contest as his rendition of 'Maggie May' was the best bit. When Mark came out, he looked like his parents had dressed him to go to church, either that or he was doing a gig as a bluecoat." 

Michelle is favourite to win the contest on Saturday. Meanwhile a number of Sam Nixon fans have said they experienced difficulties voting for their Pop Idol last weekend - similar to the phone difficulties reported after singer Javine Hylton was surprisingly voted off the Popstars show despite being one of the favourite finalists. 

Elsewhere in Pop Idol news, plans are underway for a celebrity Pop Idol. The show's producer, Richard Holloway, has told the Sun that Shane Richie and Adam Rickitt are high up on his wish list of contestants - although in that case how the format will differ from 19 Television's other pop reality format 'Reborn in the US' is not completely clear. 

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APPLE PASS 25 MILLION DOWNLOADS MARK
Just to be seasonal, Apple has announced that it has sold 25 million tracks since its service launched in April, and the 25 millionth track to be sold was Frank Sinatra's 'Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!' 

Commenting on the landmark, Apple boss Steve Jobs told reporters: "With over 25 million songs purchased and downloaded to date, the iTunes Music Store is hands-down the most successful online music store. Music fans are buying and downloading almost 1.5 million songs per week from the iTunes Music Store, which is a rate of 75 million songs per year." The service also reports sales of Christmas gift certificates for the service are going well. 

The service is, of course, still restricted to the US. International versions of the site are expected to launch in 2004.

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HEAR'SAY KLASS WANTS CLASSICAL INDUSTRY TO REINVENT ITSELF
Former Hear'Say singer Myleene Klass has called on the classical music industry to give the genre an overhaul. Classically trained Klass signed a deal with Universal Classical after Hear'Say split, and recently released a collection of classical music called 'Moving On'. 

Speaking to the BBC World Service's The Music Biz show she told reporters: "Donning a leather jacket doesn't just suddenly make you accessible, it is the whole package. I think that's what the classical world needs to give. Let's get everything to the same edgy degree that the pop world's got at, because it looks stronger on the television - none of this soft-focus classical nonsense. Let's make it edgy, let's make it current, let's make it exciting." 

She continued that the classical music world needs to target the mainstream audience more: "When Mozart wrote he never wrote with an elitist mindset. He was a bit of a party animal. He was a real person, he wasn't a saint. He was the Justin Timberlake of his time, and that's the closet thing that people can relate to. It's just about putting it into a box that people can understand it in, without necessarily putting it into a classical box." 

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ROBBIE FANS COMPLAIN THAT NAKED PICTURE WASN'T NAKED ENOUGH
German Robbie Williams fans have complained about a web promotion that promised to show a picture of the singer naked. Robbie's German website featured a blurred image of the star nude. Fans were told that the more people clicked on the image the more clear it would become. But once the picture was fully clear they found the seemingly naked Robbie was covering up his groin with what appeared to be a fake penis. 

Celebrity photographer Grainger Duke from the European press agency Europics gave reporters his expert analysis: "The penis has been clearly whited out so that all you can see is the outline of a fake penis. All you can say is that what is there now is obviously much bigger than what was underneath as it had to cover it."

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