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SongLink NewsLink | Music Industry News for November 2002

NOVEMBER 2002

© Copyright 2002 by SLI - SongLink International
Editor & Publisher: David Stark
23 Belsize Crescent - London NW3 5QY, UK
Tel: +44 (0)207 794 2540 - Fax: +44 (0)207 794 7393

In a historic deal, the Ivor Novello Awards and Virgin Megastores are teaming up to present an exceptional live event, The Ivors Live, to be staged at London's Royal Albert Hall on Friday May 23rd 2003, the day after the next Ivors' PRS-sponsored awards ceremony. Virgin Megastores and Ivors Live Ltd, a new subsidiary of the British Academy of Composers & Songwriters, have signed a 7 figure, 4 year agreement which sees Virgin Megastores as the title partner and headline sponsor of The Ivors Live concert, with Harriette Goldsmith as event director. More than 4,000 tickets will be on sale for the show, which will feature performances by some of the 2003 nominees, as well as by previous Ivors' recipients. The first names on the bill are expected to be announced in late January. Recipients for the year 2001, presented in May this year, included U2, Ash, Kate Bush, Sting, Mick Hucknall, Abba's Benny Andersson & Bjorrn Ulvaeus, and Songwriter of the Year, Dido.
The agreement is the largest that the Academy has ever entered into. As part of the deal, Virgin Megastores will be dedicating a proportion of their 2003 marketing budget to support the event. Guy Fletcher, Chairman of the British Academy of Composers & Songwriters, commented, "The Ivors are the most highly regarded award for songwriters in the world; now, with Virgin Megastores as our partner, we are able to promote British songwriting to a much wider audience." Andy Randal, MD for Virgin Megastores added, "We are proud to be associated with this prestigious annual event that exclusively honours the vital source and fulcrum of the music industry's existence and prosperity - the songwriter."

Elton John and Bernie Taupin were honoured as Men of the Year at the annual Music Industry Trusts' Dinner on November 4th, held in aid of the Brit School and Nordoff Robbins Music Therapy. The songwriting duo were introduced by Paul Gambaccini and actor Kevin Spacey, as well as accoladed on video by such peers as Bacharach & David, Leiber & Stoller, Carole King, James Taylor, Brian Wilson and many others. Elton also performed a short set, and teamed up with Blue to perform a new version of his 1976 hit Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word, to be released as the band's next single in December.

Britney Spears has been in London working on tracks and ideas for her next Jive album with UK writers Guy Chambers, Guy Sigsworth and William Orbit, as well as French dance duo Daft Punk. Cathy Dennis has also been asked to get involved with the follow-up to Spears' third album 'Britney' which has sold less than its 200 predecessor 'Oops I Did It Again.'

Alan Pell has left EMI:Chrysalis just nine months after joining as A&R director from Mercury Records. A&R manager Marc Fox has also exited, while Matt Edwards has joined as A&R manager from Hero Music, the publishing arm of XL Recordings.

Former EMI Music A&R manager Simon Harris has joined Strongsongs as UK consultant, with Joanna Schwartz appointed as LA-based US consultant. Strongsongs, headed by MD Anna Jolley, has also signed a sub-publishing deal with Sony/ATV Music for overseas collections. The writer roster includes BBMak and Georgie Dennis who has co-written the new S Club Juniors hit 'New Direction.'

Edel UK is reactivating its publishing division under MD Phil Hope, following the sale of Edel Publishing's worldwide interests earlier this year to Warner/Chappell. Hope also retains a consultancy role with W/C covering the writers acquired under deal, as well building a new writer roster at Edel, still at 12 Oval Road, London NW1 7DH, Tel: 0207 482 9700.

Ministry of Sound has undergone a major restructuring with the exit of music group CEO Matt Jagger and 11 other staff. The company's deals with labels Defected and City Rockers have also ended, but its publishing arm remains unchanged for the moment, including a joint venture deal with Brian Rawling's Metrophonic operation, whose current projects with MoS include a new album by Louise.

John Boughtwood has left Cutting Edge Music to join Music Sales as Head of Media. However he will continue to act as music supervisor on all Cutting Edge film and TV projects and can be contacted at Music Sales on 0207 434 0066.

The next Popshowparty.com all-pop showcase event is the Xmas party on Monday December 16th. Contact Laurence Hobbs 020 8361 4967, e-mail: info@popshowparty.com.

The National Music Council has launched Counting the Notes, a statistical report on the contribution of the music industry to the UK economy. Following the success of the two earlier publications, The Value of Music (1996) and A Sound Performance (1999), Counting the Notes describes how composers and publishers, musicians, performers, managers, agents, presenters, and recording companies derive income and generate value and revenue.

Queen's 'Bohemian Rhapsody' has topped a poll of the top British No. 1 Singles of all time, compiled to mark the 50th anniversary of the UK charts and broadcast by Radio 2. John Lennon's 'Imagine' is runner-up, with The Beatles' 'Hey Jude' at number three, followed by Simon & Garfunkel 'Bridge Over Troubled Water' (4), George Harrison 'My Sweet Lord' (5), Procol Harum 'A Whiter Shade Of Pale' (6), the Animals 'House Of The Rising Sun' (7), Abba 'Dancing Queen' (8), Beach Boys 'Good Vibrations' (9) and Queen & David Bowie 'Under Pressure' (10). The Beatles claimed 14 of the top 100, way ahead of any other act. The Official UK Charts Company, compiled nearly 190,000 votes to draw up the list, which inludes only four No. 1's from the past 10 years - Kylie Minogue's 'Can't Get You Out Of My Head,' Elvis's revamped 'A Little Less Conversation,' Oasis' 'Don't Look Back In Anger' and U2's 'Beautiful Day.'

William H. Roedy, President of MTV Networks International and chairman of MTV Networks Europe, will receive the Nesuhi Ertegun Person of the Year trophy at Midem, January 19-23, 2003. He will be the ninth person to receive the prestigious international accolade in Cannes, created in 1989 by Xavier Roy, Chief Executive, Reed Midem, who said, "Bill Roedy is a true leader, a visionary pioneer of music television and a dedicated lover of music."

Warner music International has launched a joint-venture label with former Warner Music Sweden MD Sanji Tandan, called S56 and concentrating on finding and developing new Nordic and Swedish talent.

Former Warner Strategic Marketing international director Rainer Focke has formed London-based Rainman Music Consultancy with initial projects including the next Simply Red album.

A lawsuit against Chuck Berry filed by his long-time collaborator Johnnie Johnson over royalties generated by songs written from 1955-66 has been thrown out with the judge ruling that too may years had passed since the songs had been written. They include hits such as No Particular Place to Go, Roll Over Beethoven and Sweet Little Sixteen. The lawsuit stated the two were co-writers on many of the songs, but Berry copyrighted them in his name alone. Johnson's attorney said his client had not yet decided whether to appeal.

Australian band The Seekers are selling all master rights to ther records and videos, with tenders due by close of business on Monday, December 2. The package, which includes such albums as The Seekers At Home and The Seekers Down Under, in addition to No. 1 hits Georgy Girl and The Carnival is Over, is expected to fetch between A$1 million and A$10 million. The Seekers' lawyer Paul O'Gorman, of Melbourne firm Dwyer and Co, said it was the first time in Australia that a band had sold its right to income from recordings in a catalogue. The Seekers are due to perform their final concert tour in March.

Sony Nashville senior VP A&R Blake Chancey has been promoted to Executive VP, reporting to President/CEO Allen Butler, and will also maintain his A&R responsibilities. Chancey joined Sony Nashville in 1994 and has co-produced the Dixie Chicks, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Montgomery Gentry, Billy Gilman and others.

Pat Finch has been appointed VP/GM Zomba Music Nashville. Finch was previously VP Creative at Famous Music and Creative Director at EMI Music. Zomba Nashville has also signed a co-publishing agreement with Mark D. Sanders, who was previously signed to Universal Music and co-wrote the 2001 CMA Song of the Year 'I Hope You Dance.'

Renee Bell has been promoted to senior VP, A&R at RCA Label Group-Nashville... Tracy Cox has left Capitol Records, Nashville.

Jenny Price and Steffen Phelps exit Hollywood Records (LA), and David Jurman exits Columbia (NY).

Nashville-based Freeman/Matteson Entertainment has opened a Los Angeles office, headed by Barry Freeman, who can be reached at 818-783-4010, or via fax at 818-783-4011.

Bob Dylan, the late Shel Silverstein and Dean Dillon were inducted to the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame on November 3 during annual ceremonies conducted by the Nashville Songwriters Foundation at Loews Vanderbilt Plaza Hotel in Nashville. In conjunction with the Hall of Fame inductions, the Nashville Songwriters Association International (NSAI) conferred a series of Songwriter Achievement Awards, with 'I'm Movin' On' by Phillip White and D. Vincent Williams named Song of the Year. The Songwriter of the Year prize went to Troy Verges.

The 8th Annual Christian Country Music Association (CCMA) Awards took place Nov. 7 at the Ryman Auditorium. Winners included Dennis Agajanian as Entertainer of the Year, Clifton Jansky as Male Vocalist, Gayla Earlene as Female Vocalist and Alan Jackson's 'Where Were You (When The World Stopped Turning)' as Song of the Year.

The Police, The Clash and Elvis Costello & the Attractions will join the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame next year, inducted along with the Righteous Brothers and AC/DC at the 18th annual induction ceremony on March 10th. The Police will also be reforming to play at the event.

NEW SIGNINGS: Victoria Beckham to Telstar Records; model Emma B to East West; Chicane (aka Nick Bracegirdle) to Mike Sault's M Records/WEA London; BBC Talent urban music winner Michelle Lawson to Mercury Records (Chris Parle); reggae artist Sean Paul to Atlantic NY (Craig Kallman), Lisa Brokop and Feel to Curb Records (Mike Curb); Johnny Lang and George Thorogood to Eagle Records USA (Mike Carden). Feeder to Chrysalis Music; Christina Aguliera to BMG Songs; Rob Thomas of Matcbox 20 has re-signed with EMI Music.

RIP: UK skiffle rocker Lonnie Donegan (71), producer/engineer Tom Dowd (77) who worked with Aretha Franklin, Eric Clapton, the Allman Brothers and many others; lyricist/playwrite Adolph Green (87), co-writer of 'New York, New York'; Derek Bell (66), harpist with The Chieftains; Actor/singer Richard Harris (59) who made MacArthur Park famous... Run DMC rap pioneer 'Jam Master' Jay Mizell (37) shot in a NY studio.

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