|Click JUMP to skip direct to a section of this email or ONLINE to read and share stories on the CMU website (JUMP option may not work in all email readers). For regular updates from Team CMU follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Tumblr.|
|CMU Jobs is a proven way to recruit the best music business talent for roles across the industry at all levels, from graduate to senior management. To book an ad contact Sam on 020 7099 9060 or email email@example.com|
Federal appeals court agrees to review pre-1972 case
As previously reported, US-wide federal copyright law only applies to sound recordings released after 1972. And that law - unusually for copyright law - does not provide sound recording owners with a 'general public performing right' over their works, but it does provide a 'digital performing right', meaning that AM/FM radio stations do not need a licence to play recordings, but satellite and digital services do.
Satellite services like Sirius and digital services like Pandora - which license recordings via the SoundExchange collective licensing system - say that because the digital performing right comes from federal law, and that only applies to post-1972 records, they shouldn't have to pay any royalties on pre-1972 tracks. The record industry, though, disagrees, saying that pre-1972 recordings are protected by state law, and a digital performing right exists there too.
Except that state copyright laws - which generally pre-date all things web - say nothing about the digital communication of music. But, say the record labels, SoundExchange and Flo & Eddie, what if there was a generally public performing right in those state laws? Then Sirius and Pandora would still need to pay, even though the labels have never previously enforced that supposed general public performing right against anyone else before.
When Sirius were sued by Flo & Eddie in various states on this issue they were pretty confident that the state courts would say there was no general public performing right. True, actual statute was generally a little vague on the issue, but if the labels had a public performing right on pre-1972 catalogue why hadn't they been suing golden oldie radio stations on AM and FM who likewise have no licenses?
But in both California and New York the courts have sided with Flo & Eddie, a judge in the latter last year refusing to award Sirius a summary judgement in its favour saying that "acquiescence by participants in the recording industry in a status quo where recording artists and producers were not paid royalties while songwriters were does not show that they lacked an enforceable right under the common law - only that they failed to act on it".
Sirius wants the appeals court to review that decision, and has gone to the federal rather than the state courts to try to force a rethink. And the Second Circuit court has agreed to consider the case.
Possibly because the satellite radio firm has raised two issues in relation to the dispute: first whether a general performing right exists under New York state law, and second whether New York state should be allowed to provide that right, given it causes massive problems for services like Sirius that operate US-wide, and which would find it really hard to obey different copyright rules in different states. And that latter point is a question for the federal rather than the state courts.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sirius has also told the appeal courts that having this whole issue hanging unresolved is a big problem for the satellite and online radio business. They write: "Absent immediate review, the [New York] court's ruling leaves SiriusXM and other broadcasters with tremendous uncertainty, faced with a choice between stopping the broadcast of pre-1972 recordings to the public's detriment; submitting to shotgun negotiations with sound recording owners; or facing massive liability as this case and others wend their way through the courts".
Of course, the record industry, for its part, is busy lobbying US Congress to introduce a general performing right into federal copyright law, and to then extent that to all copyright protected recordings, not just that from 1972 onwards. Which would address the uncertainty point here. Though not necessarily in a way Sirius would like.
Neil Fox appears in court on sex offence charges
As previously reported, Fox was first arrested over allegations of sexual assault last September, and has since been taken in for questioning on two further occasions. He was then charged with nine sexual offences in March.
Appearing in court yesterday, it was ruled that Fox should face a summary trial without jury at the magistrates' court. However, said Chief Magistrate Howard Riddle, if it seemed that Fox's alleged crimes should carry a heavier sentence than the twelve month maximum the court could impose, the case would be referred to crown court.
Fox's lawyers also successfully applied for reporting restrictions on the case to be lifted, which is a surprising request for the defence to make, though Jonathan Caplan QC said that the restrictions had led to inaccurate gossip about the nature of the alleged assaults online, adding for clarity that there were no allegations of "any kind of penetration".
Two incidents are claimed to have taken place at a motor show on Bromley Common in 1991. Fox is said to have forced his tongue into the mouth of a girl aged thirteen or fourteen who approached him for a photograph, and another girl aged fifteen at the same event, as well as touching her bottom. Then in 1996, he is accused of forcing his tongue into the mouth of a sixteen year old girl at a Capital Radio roadshow at Chessington World Of Adventures, again after she approached him for a photograph.
In 2003, he is accused of four indecent assaults against a woman over the age of sixteen at Capital Radio's studios, squeezing her breasts through her clothing, touching her bottom, grabbing her from behind and simulating sex, and putting his hand between her legs and touching her over her clothing.
At Magic FM's studio in 2007, he is accused of tickling a woman, putting his hands inside her top, and then pushing her onto a sofa, getting on top of her and simulating sex. The most recent accusation is also alleged to have taken place at Magic FM, in which he is said to have kissed a co-worker's shoulder and told her: "I just had to, it looks as if you taste so good".
The prosecution told the court that Fox had shown "a consistent and determined pattern of sexual predatory behaviour". He denies the seven charges of indecent assault and two of sexual assault. He will appear again for a plea and case management hearing on 30 Apr, with a trial expected to begin in the autumn.
Fake Glastonbury ticket seller facing prison
Hammersmith Magistrates' Court heart that Christine Babb from East Grinstead had duped 29 people into handing over money between August 2013 and July 2014. According to the East Grinstead Courier, she told her victims she worked in the music industry and therefore had access to tickets for the festival, which had sold out.
In May last year, Glastonbury founder Michael Eavis issued a statement warning people without tickets about fakes being sold, in which he named Babb specifically, saying: "Nobody called Christine Babb is either employed by Glastonbury Festival or has any tickets to sell for the festival".
The court was also told that she has previous convictions for "very similar" scams. In her defence, it was argued that mitigating factors of borderline personality disorder, Crohn's disease and bulimia should be taken into account.
However, the court agreed with the prosecution that the maximum sentence that a magistrates' court is able to impose was not heavy enough, meaning the case has now been referred to Isleworth Crown Court. Babb will appear there on 12 May to receive her sentence.
Believe buys TuneCore
Pitched more as a "strategic partnership" - though TuneCore has been bought by Believe - the former said that its artists would now be able to "tap into Believe Digital's comprehensive global services, providing a truly modern, DIY record label experience with ground support across the globe". TuneCore artists would also "have access to a wider digital distribution network, with more tools and services to empower them to succeed".
Although both operate in the digital distribution and label services space, Believe and TuneCore generally complement each other in terms of client base, with TuneCore focusing on the grassroots artist community while Believe generally works with labels and more established artists (though that does include new talent) and offers a more 'hands-on' service. There is some crossover though, between TuneCore and Believe's own grassroots music distribution service Zimbalam.
Confirming the new alliance yesterday, TuneCore CEO Scott Ackerman told reporters: "TuneCore's number one objective is to empower independent artists to succeed. This new strategic relationship provides the most powerful solution for independent artists worldwide to reach fans, sell music, increase revenue and advance their career. We're excited to deliver this new layer of opportunity while continuing to give artists the full control to decide their individual paths to success".
Meanwhile Believe Digital's Founder and President Denis Ladegaillerie said: "The success of TuneCore, its deep commitment to independent artists, and the natural synergy between our services for artists, make this partnership a powerful force to propel artists' growth. There is a tremendous opportunity for TuneCore and Believe to champion independent artists and their entrepreneurship, and together our focus will be to provide the best comprehensive services to a wider range of musicians around the world".
IFPI put out vinyl states ahead of Record Store Day
Vinyl sales were up 54.7% last year worldwide, with the Australian market seeing a 127% increase. It means good old fashion vinyl records, just like your Granddad Bob used to use, are now bringing in $346.8 million a year, with the US market account for $181.6 million of that.
Of course, overall vinyl is about 2% of the recorded music market, and the fact that so many bloody CDs are still being sold is possibly the bigger story here. But hey, vinyl revival, woo, yeah, hey man, let's do this. And now here's IFPI boss Frances Moore with a quote. And just listen to how crisp it sounds. It would never sound that good on your Tidals and Ponos, let alone your Spotifys and MP3.
"The recording industry is a portfolio business, offering music in formats from vinyl to streaming. Critics thought vinyl would disappear as a format, but many music fans around the world seem to be falling in love with it again. With the accompanying artwork and liner notes, vinyl records really can be a work of art and a collector's delight".
Spotify launches playlist targeting for brands
Or maybe Spotify's own explanation will help: "When users hit play on one of the billions of playlists on Spotify, they often signal a common activity or mood - like workout or chill. Brands will now be able to target unique audience segments based on streams from Spotify's 1.5 billion-plus playlists, from workout enthusiasts and commuters to millennials, parents and more".
See, now it's all really clear isn't it? And if you're still confused, go play a track on a confused playlist on Spotify, they'll see you getting all confused with tunes, and will call you direct to explain.
The new data service will be available via the Spotify For Brands platform from next month. Says the streaming firm's Chief Revenue Officer Jeff Levick: "Music is an integral part of life, day in and day out. Our new targeting solutions based on rich behavioural insights combined with our global footprint in 58 markets give brands unprecedented ways to reach streaming consumers".
Olly Murs and Caroline Flack to host X-Factor
Murs and Flack, who once co-hosted 'The Xtra Factor' on ITV2, have been confirmed as the new co-hosts of the main programme in the not-dead-yet 'X' franchise over there on ITV1. They take over from Dermot O'Leary who, of course, sadly died last month.
Yes, he finally died of embarrassment after somehow ending up fronting the 'X' mediocrity ship for a whole eight years. But don't worry, he was resurrected over the Easter weekend and is now set to host a reboot of 'Songs Of Praise' where hymn singers will be judged by a panel of celebrity vicars.
And it's in that new spiritual role that I'm hoping he'll advise me on whether it was wrong - and possibly misogynistic - to suggest in the first sentence of this report that Flack's main achievement to date was shagging Harry Styles. And if it was, perhaps he could also advise me of her other achievements.
So there you go. Most of this is not true of course. But Murs and Flack really are the new hosts of 'X-Factor'. Don't believe me? Look, I have a quote from 'X' chief Simon Cowell to prove it: "Fronting". See? It's confirmed.
Why music people should #VoteForMusic
As previously reported, during the #VoteForMusic keynote TGE co-founder Martin Elbourne, Cooking Vinyl's Martin Goldschmidt, Yellowbrick Music's Meredith Cork and artist Dan Le Sac will all deliver a short speech addressed at the new government. And after that we will find out the five key music-related issues most mentioned by performers, industry people and music fans in the run up to the General Election via the #VoteForMusic campaign.
CMU Business Editor Chris Cooke has been talking to the person behind that campaign, Julia Payne from The Hub, who explains why she thinks the wider music community should take some time to engage in the political dimension of their industry.
Referencing the trade bodies that more routinely represent the music business to the political community, Payne says: "I think it's great that we have those trade bodies, and that they have channels through which they can talk to government and Parliament, but there's no way that they can ever represent everyone, all of the different parts of the industry; we're just too diverse a bunch of people".
She goes on: "And I'm not suggesting for one moment that #VoteForMusic can do that, but I do think that we need other ways that people who work in, or love, music, can come together to have a voice, people who maybe don't belong to a membership organisation for instance, or for whom there isn't an umbrella body. But the reason I wanted to launch #VoteForMusic now was because the election is a once every five years moment, and it seemed the right time to try to kickstart something that gives people a chance to set out their stall to a new government".
Explaining how people can get involved, she adds: "It's really easy. Right now, you can use the #VoteForMusic hashtag to vote via Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, posting using either a simple message or a photo to vote. At the same time you nominate three other people to cast their #VoteForMusic, a bit like the Ice Bucket Challenge. We're also asking music venues and shops to get involved too, by becoming a #VoteForMusic polling station and creating their own #VoteForMusic ballot box that audiences and customers can use to vote, using #VoteForMusic ballot papers".
Bill Ward says a full Black Sabbath reunion still unlikely
As previously reported, back in 2012 it looked, for a time, like a full original line-up reunion of Sabbath could be on the cards, but then Ward said he'd been handed an "unsignable" contact. As a result the subsequent reunion shows went ahead without the drummer, though the other band members said "the door was always open" to Ward.
In the new statement, Ward has repeated his previous line that while the door may always be open, that doesn't mean he is being offered what he considers to be a fair deal. And, three years on, the drummer says that for any full reunion to occur in the future, Osbourne would have to undo damage done by various comments he has made regarding his former bandmate.
Ward writes: "I would want Ozzy to amend his opinions and exaggerations. I would want him to be forthcoming about his unrealistic viewpoints. And because I was chastised publicly, I would want him to amend publicly in his words, and not through an Ozzy representative, the nature of the wrongs".
He goes on: "I would not want to continue on with him without this seemingly impassable dilemma being addressed. I don't think previously strong relationships can remain strong after dispute by just sweeping the offensive stuff under the carpet, or by saying a puny sorry, or 'oh, that's all over now'. It doesn't work like that for me. Righting of wrong works, and that's what I want if I'm ever going to be his friend again".
Returning to 'the deal', he goes on: "Still undone and faraway is a 'signable' contract. I would require a 'signable' contract before moving one step toward a pathway that could lead to us all playing together again. I want a contract I can approve. That's my truth. That's my stand. I've listened to nothing but insults and false remarks, and if as a band or as individuals they wish to continue along the same lines, then any notion of an original Black Sabbath line-up will continue to fade away. Put simply, it's up to them".
You can read Ward's full statement, where he also discusses his upcoming projects, here.
CMU Beef Of The Week #250: Fifteen tips for a better beef
So, in the interests of keeping this all going for another five years - which requires the world of pop to continue beefing, of course - here are some handy hints for anyone thinking of having a bit of a barney. Fifteen top tips for making your beef go with a bang.
1. Preparation is key. Always try to do some groundwork before you get involved in a beef. In many cases, the beef would not be possible at all if it weren't for a little bit of effort right at the start. Wiley, for example, once spent a whole day insulting his audience on Twitter before a festival show. And had Dappy not thought quickly in a Radio 1 studio one day in 2010, he wouldn't have had the phone number of a woman who insulted him on air, and in turn wouldn't have been able to send her a text back the next day saying: "Your gonna die, U sent a very bad msg towards N Dubz on The Chris Moyels show yesterday Morning and for that reason u will never be left alone!! If u say sorry I will leave u alone u fuck".
2. Develop healthy rivalries. No true pop act can exist without a nemesis. Not in those all-important early stages, anyway. One Direction would not be where they are today without The Wanted. The problem with having a nemesis, of course, is that you might actually be scared of them. This is why it is also important to hire security guards.
3. The pettier the better. If at all possible, you should go to extraordinary lengths to win against your opponent. Take Def Leppard, for example. Rather than come to an amicable agreement on digital royalties for their early music, which would allow Universal to finally put it on digital services, the band recorded "forgeries" of those songs. "I had to sing myself into a certain throat shape to be able to sing that way again", said frontman Joe Elliott. "It was really hard work, but it was challenging, and we did have a good laugh over it here and there". See, beefs can be fun.
4. Make outlandish statements. It's no good just saying you don't like something, you need to slap people in the face with your distaste. For example, if Billy Corgan had said in an interview that he felt that Radiohead's Jonny Greenwood wasn't as great as Deep Purple's Ritchie Blackmore, you probably wouldn't have taken much notice. But when he starts, "I'll piss on fucking Radiohead", you know that this thing is on.
5. Pick easy targets. Sure, you can spend time formulating an argument, making sure you're in good standing when you go public with your beef. Or you can just pick something everyone already hates, like Ian Brown when he cut off a Daily Mail journalist at a press conference to ask, "What does it feel like to represent the newspaper that used to support Adolf Hitler?"
6. Say something about animals. Talking of picking easy targets, don't rule out animals. Animals are mostly idiots, and are therefore easy to pick a fight with. And while animals may not be very good at crafting an angry response on Twitter, you can normally rely on their PR reps - aka PETA - to rise to the beef. So, you could, like Noel Gallagher, make an innocent comment about encouraging your children to throw things at cows, and there will be a statement all over the internet before you can, well, throw anything at a cow.
7. Don't be afraid to give out harsh criticism. Whenever people ask me if I've been too harsh on someone, I think of that time a load of pigeons shat all over Kings Of Leon and realise that I'm not even close. It's also worth noting that, while animals are easy targets, birds will fuck you up.
8. Try to do a musician out of some money. If there's one thing I know about musicians, it's that they love money. Love it. They even expect to be paid for working - that's how much they just love to feel those notes in their hands. And if you don't believe me, just ask the guys at McDonald's what happened when they suggested that they might not have any money available for bands playing their SXSW showcase this year.
9. Irony is your friend. Sometimes people start beefs accidentally, and that's fine. Japanese boyband Arashi appeared in an advert in which they stood next to some trees. There were five trees and five band members, so one suggests that they called them 'The Arashi Trees'. No, says another, these trees should remain nameless so that they can be free. Immediately, fans started making pilgrimages to see The Arashi Trees. They started messing the place up and the locals got pissed off. The landowner's solution to this was to plant two more trees.
10. If it ain't broke, break it. Miley Cyrus was doing pretty well, and seemed to have everything going for her. But being a child star does not automatically translate into a lifelong career. So Cyrus built a radical new image for herself in order to launch her adult career (that is, her career as an adult), which turned half the world against her, peaking with her performance at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards. That performance also involved Robin Thicke. Bonus beef tip: Be Robin Thicke.
11. Cultivate a crazed fanbase. As shown when Arashi inadvertently launched a beef simply by standing near some trees, under the right circumstances your fanbase will be ready to do the work for you. Like when jazz artist Esperanza Spalding dared to win the Grammy for Best New Artist in 2011, "stealing" it from Justin Bieber. Or when GQ had the audacity to feature One Direction on its cover, much to the quite violent anger of 1D-ers.
12. In-fighting. Sometimes the best way to get a beef off the ground is to just turn on those closest to you. Take Blink 182, for example. When Tom DeLonge departed the band earlier this year, there was a long dispute over exactly who had or had not decided that he should leave. And, for a short time, if he'd left at all. And then there's Black Sabbath, who have now kept a beef going with drummer Bill Ward for over three years.
13. Get a lawyer involved. Lawyers charge a lot of money for writing letters, so they should be good at it. For example, when Disney sued Deadmau5, accusing him of infringing its trademark with his stage headgear, his lawyer Dina LaPolt not only accused the company of bullying him, but managed to find an instance of Disney infringing the producer's intellectual property. And when Katy Perry tried to stop Fernando Soso from distributing 3D print designs of the Left Shark borne of her Super Bowl performance, NYU law professor CJ Sprigman triumphed with such dry observations as, "The Left Shark costume has legs because the person inside it has legs".
14. Call someone's bluff. Sometimes you plan to do something, and then it looks like you might not get your way. You might calculate that you are in the position of power in the situation, and therefore threaten to withdraw entirely in the hope that the opposing side will cave and allow you to do just whatever the fuck you want. That's what Garth Brooks did when Dublin City Council refused to grant him permission to play two more concerts in the city, in addition to the three he'd already sold out. The ensuing fallout was a textbook beef.
15. If in doubt, cook. Did you know that the word 'beef' has more than one meaning? As well as being the term for 'some sort of, possibly made up, disagreement', it is also a type of food. Try banning it, sculpting it, wearing it, or just cooking it. Or, to combine both uses of the word, try to get CMU's Chris Cooke to eat fish instead of it.
|Send ALL press releases to firstname.lastname@example.org - this is checked daily by the whole editorial team meaning your release will definitely get to the right person.
For details of the training and consultancy services offered by CMU Insights click here - Andy and Chris are also available to provide music business comment, just email them direct.
To promote your company or advertise jobs or services to the entire UK music industry via the CMU bulletin or website contact Sam on 020 7099 9060 or email email@example.com