TODAY'S TOP STORY: Apple and 'Fortnite' maker Epic Games have finally agreed on something. Both companies say that a judge, not a jury, should rule on all the things they don't agree on. Which is lots of things, but principally Apple's App Store rules. The judge they want to rule on that disagreement previously said that she thought it would better if the case went before a jury... [READ MORE]
TOP STORIES Apple and Epic agree that a jury shouldn't rule on all their disagreements
LEGAL Yoko Ono sues former John Lennon assistant over recent interview
DEALS Triller signs deal with ICE
LABELS & PUBLISHERS Warner seeks music tech investment opportunities in Asia
MEDIA Capital launches new 24/7 dance music service
ARTIST NEWS Tekashi 6ix9ine reportedly hospitalised after accidentally overdosing on diet pills and coffee
ONE LINERS Gorillaz, Billie Eilish, Blackpink, more
AND FINALLY... Harry Shearer to release album of Donald Trump songs
Check out all the latest job opportunities with CMU Jobs. To advertise your job opportunities here email [email protected] or call 020 7099 9060.
Proper Music Distribution is seeking a Label Manager to assist with its growing number of labels and releases. The ideal candidate will be experienced in managing products from creation to delivery, including marketing and promotional campaigns, building new relationships, and maintaining existing ones.

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We all know playlists drive a lot of plays on the streaming services, with playlister pitching now a key part of any music marketing campaign. But how do streaming service playlists work? And how is the evolution of playlist curation impacting on the future of music marketing?
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Streaming Challenges In Ten Steps
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Collective Licensing In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to the collective licensing system
Brand Partnerships In Ten Steps
A ten step guide to artist/brand partnerships
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Apple and Epic agree that a jury shouldn't rule on all their disagreements
Apple and 'Fortnite' maker Epic Games have finally agreed on something. Both companies say that a judge, not a jury, should rule on all the things they don't agree on. Which is lots of things, but principally Apple's App Store rules. The judge they want to rule on that disagreement previously said that she thought it would better if the case went before a jury.

Epic is suing Apple, of course, over those App Store rules based on the argument they breach competition laws. Like Spotify, the games firm doesn't like the fact that when you make an app for iOS devices you are obliged to use Apple's payment platform and pay the tech giant a 15-30% commission on any transactions. App Store rules even ban you from signposting alternative payment options within the app.

Before going legal over those rules, Epic added an alternative payment option to the iOS version of 'Fortnite', resulting in the game being banned from the App Store. Once Epic had filed its competition lawsuit, Apple also went legal - arguing in a countersuit that the addition of the alternative payment option on 'Fornite' constituted breach of contract and unjust enrichment.

Both sides met on a Zoom call on Monday with the judge overseeing the case, Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers. Among other things, the judge discussed what route the Epic v Apple legal battle should now take, and whether the dispute should go before a jury, or whether it should be "tried by the court", so that she herself would consider the various arguments and make a judgement.

Rogers said she thought the jury route made more sense. First, because Epic's claims about the App Store rules are at "the frontier of antitrust law", making the input of a jury more valuable. And secondly because whichever side loses at first instance will almost certainly appeal. And the appeals court will be less willing to meddle with a jury ruling.

Apple had initially asked for a jury to rule on its counterclaims against Epic. However, because Rogers wants all the various claims to be considered together, it has changed its mind on that, with both Apple and Epic seemingly wanting judges and only judges to rule on whether the App Store rules violate US competition law.

A filing made with the court after Monday's hearing stated: "Epic and Apple have met and conferred, and the parties agree that Epic's claims and Apple's counterclaims should be tried by the court, and not by a jury".

Noting Apple's original request for a jury hearing for its counterclaims, the filing added: "Therefore, with Epic's consent, Apple hereby withdraws its demand for a jury trial. The parties respectfully request that the case (including any claims and counterclaims) proceed to a bench trial on a schedule determined by the court".


Yoko Ono sues former John Lennon assistant over recent interview
You, like me, might be getting ready to celebrate the 80th birthday of a very important person born in Merseyside exactly eight decades ago. And if that's the case, I'll pass on your birthday greetings to my mum this weekend. Meanwhile, it would have been John Lennon's 80th birthday next week and some people are marking that occasion too.

That includes Frederic Seaman, a former personal assistant of Lennon, who last month gave an interview about his time working for the late Beatle. Though it's an interview that has now resulted in legal action, because it turns out that - all the way back in 2003 - Seaman pledged to never publicly speak about the musician again. And that pledge was part of a legal settlement.

Lennon's widow Yoko Ono filed a new lawsuit against Seaman yesterday, restarting a legal battle that goes back nearly 40 years. Seaman worked for Lennon in the run-up to his death in 1980. He was formally fired by Ono the following year after it emerged that he'd been taking items from Lennon's home, including diaries, photographs, fan letters and unreleased recordings.

Seaman ultimately pled guilty to second-degree larceny and was ordered to return all the items he had taken. But the legal wrangling between Ono and Seaman didn't end there. In 1991 he angered Lennon's family by publishing a book called 'The Last Days Of John Lennon', and later in the 1990s Ono discovered that Seaman hadn't in fact returned all the items he'd taken in 1981.

Ono sued in 1999 and it was as part of that legal battle that Seaman ultimately pledged to never talk about his time working with Lennon again. Admitting in a statement to the court that he said things about Lennon and Ono that were "factually inaccurate", he added: "It is impossible to undo what has taken place. But it stops here and now".

That 2003 statement is included in Ono's new lawsuit, and concludes: "I will return any remaining things that I have that are yours. I will refrain from ever writing anything about you or your family or about my time in your employ. I offer no excuse for my conduct and only ask that you can find it in your heart to forgive so I can move on with my life".

The lawsuit then states: "Despite his clear and unambiguous obligations and his oath that 'it stop here and now', on 10 Sep 2020, Seaman sat for an interview from his apartment, flanked by Lennon memorabilia and wilfully, wantonly and contumaciously violated the clear and ambiguous terms of the [previous agreement]". As well as discussing Lennon in the interview, he also said that he hoped to publish a revised and expanded version of 'The Last Days Of John Lennon'.

The lawsuit goes on: "As a direct consequence of Seaman's actions, Mrs Lennon has suffered and will suffer irreparable harm. By this action, Mrs Lennon seeks to again try to disabuse Seaman that he is entitled to exploit the name and intellectual property of Mrs Lennon. Unless otherwise ordered by this court again and held in contempt and punished for his contumacious behaviour, it is clear that Seaman's abuses will continue".

Ono's lawsuit claims fraud, breach of contract and copyright infringement, and seeks a new injunction restraining Seaman plus at least $150,000 in damages.


Triller signs deal with ICE
Ah, Triller, Triller, Triller, everyone's talking about Triller. Well, everyone's talking about TikTok still. But then the TikTok chatter sometimes morphs into Triller chatter. And then everyone's talking about Triller.

What about Instagram Reels? Why aren't you all excited about Instagram Reels? Or YouTube Shorts. Shouldn't you be more excited about YouTube's blatant TikTok rip-off? I suppose you need to be in India to get involved with that particular beta service from Google.

If only more countries would be bold (petty?) enough to ban the TikToks, we too could be getting more excited about YouTube Shorts. Or Instagram Reels. Or Triller.

Oh no, sorry, I forgot, we're already excited about Triller, aren't we? Hence, I gathered you all here today to let you know that the video-sharing app has just announced a multi-territory licensing deal with song rights copyright hub ICE.

The deal covers the repertoires of German and Swedish collecting societies GEMA and STIM, parts of the repertoires of British and Irish societies PRS and IMRO, and the Anglo-American catalogues of music publishers Downtown, Songtrust, Concord and Peermusic, all of which participate in what's known as the ICE Core licence.

"We found this to be a really smooth process, reflecting both ICE's experience in licensing a wide range of digital services and our own approach in seeking fair deals with rightsholders", says Triller boss Mike Lu on the new deal. "Together the shared knowledge proved invaluable in both addressing a range of challenges, agreeing the present and mapping out how this could develop in the future. We look forward to offering our users an unparallel experience on the Triller app".

Meanwhile, ICE's VP Commercial Ben McEwen adds: "This deal is a good example of forward thinking. In addition to agreeing commercial terms, we've been able to explore collaboration in areas of dataflows and reporting. Working together, this reflects a digital service pioneering new ways of utilising music, and doing so on a basis that recognises the vital contribution songwriters make to their service. Triller has displayed a positive approach to our dealings to date, and there's a strong foundation for future development".

Triller and ICE both stressing how easy and pleasurable it has been working with the other on making this deal happen may or may not be a sly reference to the fact that talks between TikTok and ICE have not gone so smoothly.

With user-generated content and video-sharing apps likely to play a key role in the next phase of digital music growth, the industry at large is keen to get all the relevant deals in place with both the legacy and the newer players in this space.

Digital music start-ups still tend to prioritise sorting out recording rights over songs rights, much to the frustration of music publishers and songwriters. Though that's partly because sorting out song rights is such a monumental mindfuck.

Though certain societies and publishers have been trying to make the process somewhat easier to navigate, not least the societies and publishers involved in ICE. Hence why both sides here are keen to stress the "smooth process" that led to this deal. Well, that and it's always fun to get a little sneaky TikTok dig into the proceedings. Which maybe they did, maybe they didn't.

But why are you talking about TikTok? What's TikTok? It's all about Triller. Or Instagram Reels. Or YouTube Shorts. Or, more likely, that video app that's so fucking cool, none of us have even heard of it yet. There's a challenge for the music industry: whose clever enough to license the cool new app no one's heard about yet?


Warner seeks music tech investment opportunities in Asia
Warner Music Asia has announced a new partnership with US investment firm SOSV that will see the two companies seek opportunities to jointly invest in music tech start-ups. To do that, the two firms will utilise two of SOSV's existing start-up accelerators based in Asia, Chinaccelerator based out of Shanghai and MOX based out of Taipei.

Confirming the new alliance, Warner Music Asia President Simon Robson says: "SOSV has an impressive track record in the Asia market with Chinaccelerator and MOX. We're excited to be partnering with SOSV to discover the next generation of start-up talent, which can help us transform the experiences of music fans".

Meanwhile, SOSV General Partner William Bao Bean adds: "Deep technology is revolutionising how we experience music and engage with artists, while opening up new ways to support the arts. Bringing Warner Music's expertise in music and media together with SOSV's capital and ecosystem of founders, 300+ mentors and global community will prove a powerful force for disruption".

Elsewhere in Warner Music does stuff in Asia news, Warner Music India - which launched in March this year - has announced another partnership. This time it's done a distribution deal with Bollywood firm Tips Industries, which will see the major distribute Tips Music's catalogues domestically and globally, the latter via its ADA business.

Says Warner Music India MD Jay Mehta: "Tips has an amazing catalogue containing some of the best and most loved Bollywood music. I'm delighted that, along with ADA, we'll be promoting and distributing these iconic songs. Tips' Hindi YouTube content receives more than 5.1 billion views per month, so the appetite for its music is there for everyone to see".

Tips Industries MD Kumar Taurani adds: "We are excited to partner with Warner Music and to see how it'll use its firepower to push our rich catalogue and new music even further. Warner will be an vital partner for us as we establish a bigger presence on global streaming platforms".


Capital launches new 24/7 dance music service
If you wondered why the UK commercial radio sector's lobbyists so quickly hit out at the BBC's plans to launch a new 24/7 dance music service within BBC Sounds, well, who knows? In unrelated news, commercial radio giant Global has announced the launch of a new 24/7 dance music service.

New radio station Capital Dance will air on the DAB digital radio network and online, "playing the biggest dance anthems and club mixes". It is being fronted by DJ MistaJam, who quit the BBC earlier this month after fifteen years presenting shows for 1Xtra and Radio 1.

MistaJam will host a drive time show from Tuesday to Saturday, plus an evening show on Fridays and Saturdays that will also go out on the main Capital network. Existing Capital DJ Coco Cole also joins the new station presenting an evening show throughout the week and a late night show at the weekend.

Confirming all this, Global's Director Of Broadcasting James Rea said: "Capital Dance is a brilliant addition to the Capital brand, opening it up to a whole new set of music and dance genres, fronted by one of the biggest personalities and most esteemed figures in dance music. We're delighted to welcome MistaJam to the Global family both on Capital Dance and on the Capital network for the all new Capital Weekender show on Friday and Saturday nights".

Last month the BBC announced the launch of Radio 1 Dance, a new service within its BBC Sounds app that aggregates the broadcaster's existing dance music specialist shows and guest mixes from the archives.

The move was criticised by commercial radio trade group RadioCentre, which said that the licence-fee-funded BBC was meant to offer services that were "distinct" from what was already available in the wider market, and that when it comes to dance music programming "commercial radio has a rich catalogue in this area".

One of the commercial radio sector's champions in Parliament, Andy Carter MP, who chairs the All Party Parliamentary Group For Commercial Radio, then said that Radio 1 Dance was another example of the BBC unfairly competing with its commercial rivals and called on media regulator OfCom to investigate.

But OfCom said that because Radio 1 Dance just repurposes existing content the new channel didn't need to be reviewed to confirm its public service remit. However, the regulator said that it would look into the Corporation's wider plans for the evolution of the BBC Sounds app.

Meanwhile, back at Global HQ, former BBC and now Capital dance guy MistaJam said: "I'm really excited, honoured and privileged to start a brand new chapter in my career with the Global family, launching the UK's first ever official 24 hour dance music radio station, Capital Dance, and taking the reins of the all new Capital Weekender show to make it the biggest dance music show in the UK".


Book into the CMU Insights Autumn Webinars
The current series of CMU weekly webinars is underway, with a different session every Tuesday afternoon - covering topics like playlists, fanbase building, brand partnerships, direct-to-fan, distribution, piracy and industry trends. Bookings are currently open for all the following sessions...

Streaming Service Playlists | 6 Oct

Building A Fanbase For New Artists | 13 Oct

Understanding Brand Partnerships | 20 Oct

Building A Direct-To-Fan Business | 27 Oct

Top Five Music Industry Developments In 2020 | 3 Nov

Top Five Streaming Developments In 2020 | 10 Nov

Top Five Copyright Developments In 2020 | 17 Nov

The Evolution Of Music Distribution | 24 Nov

The Evolution Of Music Piracy | 1 Dec

BOOK NOW to secure your place - access to each individual webinar is just £25, plus you can book into four webinars for £75 and all nine for just £150.

Tekashi 6ix9ine reportedly hospitalised after accidentally overdosing on diet pills and coffee
Tekashi 6ix9ine has reportedly been hospitalised after accidentally overdosing on weight loss pills and caffeine.

According to The Shade Room, which says it has spoken directly to the rapper, he was hospitalised earlier this week after taking two Hydroxycut pills, rather than the recommended one. His body apparently reacted badly to this, along with the cup of coffee he'd also drunk.

Two diet pills and a coffee might not sound that bad. You're possibly thinking that there's something else at play here. 6ix9ine would like you to stop that.

He has apparently insisted that no other drugs apart from Hydroxycut and caffeine were involved. Aside from the fact, he says, that he doesn't take illegal drugs, doing so (and ending up in the hospital as a result) would violate the terms of his probation and send him right back to jail.

The rapper, of course, was released from prison early and placed under house arrest back in April over fears that he could contract COVID-19 while incarcerated. He is in a high risk group, due to his chronic asthma.

He was sentenced to a two year jail term in December last year after pleading guilty to various criminal charges relating to his past involvement with the Nine Trey Bloods street gang in New York.



Sony Music UK has appointed Taponeswa Mavunga to the newly created role of Director Of Africa. She is tasked with identifying opportunities for African artists in the UK. "At this moment, when the global cultural landscape is changing so rapidly, I'm excited to play my part in the black cultural renaissance", she says. "My passion for Africa and African music is unwavering and I look forward to impactful collaboration and partnerships".

BMG Production Music has promoted Scott Doran, Caspar Kedros and Sam Delves to senior global creative roles in licensing, content and marketing, respectively. "Attracting and promoting top executive and creative talent to BMGPM is key in our ongoing mission of enhancing the company's world-class service to our media partners", says Global MD John Clifford. "These moves represent a significant step for BMGPM towards a more integrated international structure and our one team, one catalogue, one BMG approach to the business".

Warner Music Group has announced the election of Ceci Kurzman to its board of directors. She is founder of investment firm (and former management agency) Nexus Management Group. "Ceci's expertise in developing the careers of artists, combined with her work as an entrepreneur and investor, will make her a great addition to our exceptional group of advisors", says Len Blavatnik, Chair of Warner parent company Access Industries. It was also decided that the board should remain at eleven members, so WMG's Global CEO Of Recorded Music, Max Lousada, has agreed to step down from his position on the board.



Gorillaz have released new track 'The Pink Phantom', featuring 6lack and Elton John. "Damon [Albarn] reached out and asked me to do something and the way the song has turned out is just great", says John. "I was in the studio in London and he was at the other end in Devon, but even remotely it was such an engaging and creative process".

Hey, remember when the release of the new James Bond film was postponed by six months and we were all like, "What? Why are you even doing that?" Then it looked like a really shrewd and prescient move as time went on. Well, now the revised release date is approaching and it looks like they might actually go ahead with it, even though some of you, I'm sure, will be saying, "What? Why would you even do that?" Anyway, Billie Eilish has now released the video for her theme song, which contains clips from the movie.

Blackpink have released their debut album 'The Album', which includes Cardi B collaboration 'Bet You Wanna'.

Megan Thee Stallion has released new single 'Don't Stop', featuring Young Thug.

Kali Uchis has released new single 'La Luz', featuring Jhay Cortez. "'La Luz' is about the inevitable - that moment when you set your sights on someone and can't wait to do everything freaky imaginable with them", she says. "I was so excited to make my version of a Latin pop song because there's no other song like it on my upcoming album".

Jorja Smith has released new single 'Come Over', featuring Popcaan. The song, she says, is inspired by "that unsure feeling when you're talking to someone and you can't tell how much they're into you and you're chasing them when - really - it can be straight up and no one should be playing games".

Anna Of The North has released new single 'Someone Special'. "The song is inspired by that feeling of uncertainty, of not knowing", she says. "During times like these we really get feeling of how fragile we are. In the big picture we might feel insignificant. But you are always special to someone". Her new EP, 'Believe', is out on 23 Oct.

Meg Myers has released new single 'Any Way You Wanna Love'. She is set to release two new EPs - 'Thank U 4 Taking Me To 2 The Disco' and 'I'd Like 2 Go Home Now' - on 13 Nov. "There is a lot of pain and suffering in these songs, but also a lot of hope and healing", she says. "It's an important part of my beautiful and crazy human experience journey that led me to my spiritual awakening".

Emmy The Great has released new single 'Chang-E'. Of the inspiration for the song, she says: "It begins with this. Chang-E, the wife of the tyrant Hou Yi, drinks the elixir of immortality to save China from his eternal reign. She ascends to the moon, and lives there with the Jade Rabbit, its original inhabitant. In mid-autumn, we celebrate Chang-E's sacrifice with a festival of lanterns and lights. Many centuries later, NASA tells the moon-bound Apollo 11 astronauts to look out for the Chinese queen and her rabbit. Michael Collins replies, 'We'll keep a close eye out for the bunny girl'".

Tycho and Rum.Gold have released a new single together, 'Run Away'. "With 'Run Away', I wanted to take new musical ideas and wrap them in the familiar sonics and textures of my sound", says Tycho. "Working with Rum.Gold's voice was really freeing in that it provided the contrast needed to push things into a different emotional space".



Gary Barlow has announced a solo UK tour in June next year, culminating in two nights at the O2 Arena in London. Tickets go on sale next Friday.

Check out our weekly Spotify playlist of new music featured in the CMU Daily - updated every Friday.


Harry Shearer to release album of Donald Trump songs
Harry Shearer has announced an album of his satirical songs written from the perspective of Donald Trump. Which is possibly poorly timed now that the President has come down with COVID-19. Who knows? How are we meant to feel about all that?

Anyway, in recent months Shearer has been posting weekly songs in the guise of Trump to YouTube. He's now planning to release those songs as an album, titled 'The Many Moods Of Donald Trump', on 30 Oct, three days before the US presidential election.

"America has never had a President so demanding of our continued attention", says Shearer. "I decided to give him too much of mine".

The latest track released from the album is 'Executive Time', the video for which you can watch here.

In other Shearer-related political news, Spinal Tap have announced that they will reunite for a political fundraiser for the Democrats in Pennsylvania - an important state for the outcome of the election - on 14 Oct.

Shearer and bandmates Christopher Guest and Michael McKean will appear at a virtual event hosted by 'This Is Spinal Tap' director Rob Reiner and comedian Patton Oswalt.


ANDY MALT | Editor
Andy heads up the team, overseeing the CMU Daily, website and Setlist podcast, managing social channels, reporting on artist and business stories, and writing the CMU Approved column.
[email protected] (except press releases, see below)
CHRIS COOKE | Co-Founder & MD
Chris provides music business coverage, writing key business news and CMU Trends. He also leads the CMU Insights consultancy unit and the CMU:DIY future talent programme, as well as heading up CMU publisher 3CM UnLimited.
[email protected] (except press releases, see below)
SAM TAYLOR | Commercial Manager
Sam oversees the commercial side of the CMU media, leading on sales and sponsorship, and also heads up business development at CMU Insights and CMU:DIY.
[email protected] or call 020 7099 9060
CARO MOSES | Co-Publisher
Caro helps oversee the CMU media as a Director of 3CM UnLimited, as well as heading up the company's other two titles ThisWeek London and ThreeWeeks Edinburgh, and supporting other parts of the business.
[email protected]
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