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SongLink NewsLink | Music Industry News for December 2005/January 2006

DECEMBER 2005/JANUARY 2006

© Copyright 2006 by SLI - SongLink International
Editor & Publisher: David Stark
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Stephen Navin has been appointed Chief Executive of the Music Publishers Association, taking up his appointment in January after 3 years as adviser to the Department of Culture, Media and Sport on music and other creative industries. He has been involved in the entertainment industry for 30 years, as lawyer, business affairs director, MD of Virgin's Film and Video Division, VP of Operations for BMG Europe and CEO of the V2 Music Group. Navin takes over from Sarah Faulder who was recently appointed Chare de Mission to BIEM (the International Bureau of Mechanical Rights Societies) and Senior Consultant with CISAC (the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers). MPA chairman Paul Curran said "I am very excited that Stephen is taking this role and am sure he will bring energy and ideas to MPA members and engage the changing user community."

In a legal submission to the Copyright Tribunal, the MCPS-PRS Alliance has challenged record companies to reveal how much they earn from download sales. A 32-page submission from the Alliance set out its case in response to last June's copyright tribunal referral by the BPI, alongside seven digital service providers and four mobile network operators. The submission says that composers and songwriters currently earn between 5p and 6p from the sale of a 79p download, compared to the 2.5p they would earn under BPI proposals. In contrast, they claim, record labels are believed to earn between 40p and 50p from the same sale. MCPS-PRS group chief executive Adam Singer commented, "We have now submitted our reasons for why the record industry should adopt fresh economic thinking in a digital age, in order to sustain the composing community upon which they rely," he says. The Copyright Tribunal is not expected to sit until next October.

Paul Connolly has been promoted to President of Europe/MD UK for Universal Music Publishing Group. He will continue to preside over the company's European activities as well as oversee the company's UK operation, and continues to report to US Chairman/CEO David Renzer. Connolly joined the company, then MCA Music, in 1988 as an A&R scout. He was appointed A&R Director in 1991 and Managing Director in 1994. In 1997, he became VP of MCA Music International in addition to his role of UK MD and in 1999 was appointed Executive VP, Europe and Managing Director, UK of UMP. Jonathan Channon has been promoted to Senior VP, Media and Business Development at EMI Music Publishing. In this new role he will market the company's extensive catalogue through business opportunities in broadcast and films, branding and advertising, and new media and merchandising. This is part of a department re-organisation as Guy Moot continues to re-structure the company since he became MD in June, which also sees the appointment of Melanie Johnson as Promotions Manager, joining from Sony BMG. She joins an eight strong team that includes Amy Ashworth, Steve Hills, Chris Jones, Stuart McCarthy, Nick Oakes, Marlene Oakley and Howard Price, all of whom report to Channon, as also does Austin Wilde, Senior Repertoire and Exploitation Manager, who acts as the conduit between the A&R and Business Development departments.

Simon Aldridge is promoted to senior repertoire manager at Sony/ATV Music Publishing, while Flash Taylor becomes A&R manager. Additionally, Mark Waring is appointed head of business affairs.

BMG Music Publishing has launched a new specialist music sourcing service named Re:Tunes, for the purpose of helping TV advertisers wishing to find unusual covers of familiar songs.

Paul Weller will receive the Brit Awards' Outstanding Contribution award on February 15th at Earl's Court, coinciding with his 30th anniversary as a recording artist, with The Jam, Style Council and solo.

Stock Aitken & Waterman have reformed their partnership as writers and producers since promoting their current 3-CD greatest hits album Gold. They are currently working on new material.

Charlotte Ray joins the PRS Foundation as manager from January 2006, replacing David Francis who has joined the Contemporary Music Network.

Sir Bob Geldof, Harvey Goldsmith and John Kennedy are to receive MIDEM's 'Personality of the Year' awards in Cannes in recognition of their work with Live Aid and Live 8 in bringing the music industry together to help alleviate poverty in Africa.

Yoko Ono has made John Lennon's entire solo song catalogue to Amnesty International for a music download project. Four versions of Lennon songs will be made available on the Make Some Noise site, launched to coincide with Human Rights Day on December 10th and two days after the 25th anniversary of Lennon's murder. All profits from sales of the downloads will be used to support Amnesty International.

Dmitry Konnov has been appointed as General Manager of Universal Music Russia, succeeding David Junk who is leaving the company to return to his native USA. Junk, working in conjunction with UMG's subsidiary label Interscope Records, played a key role in the worldwide success of girl duo t.A.T.u.

Jason Flom has been appoointed CEO of Virgin Records in the USA, while Ali Buttars has joined as A&R Director, based in New York.

Allison Hagendorf becomes A&R manager at Epic Records in New York, while Vinny Caruso becomes A&R Scout.

Heather Pegg has joined Capitol Records LA as A&R manager... Tom Storms has left Atlantic... Rod Kukla has left Sanctuary in LA.

Erica Grayson has joined A&M Records in LA as Urban A&R manager, reporting to GM Michelle Thomas and label president Ron Fair.

LeAnn Phelan has joined Sony BMG Records in Nashville as Senior A&R Manager. Brent Milligan has left EMI Christian Music.

Memphis Recording Service (MRS) has released Elvis Presley's first single That's All Right pressed directly from the original master. The track is now out of copyright, and is included on a box set issued on December 12 in HMV stores, and by January elsewhere.

The keynote speaker for SXSW 2006 is Neil Young, who will be in conversation with film director Jonathan Demme. SXSW taks place in Austin, Texas from March 15-19th 2006.

RIP: Tony Meehan (62), original drummer of The Shadows, following a fall at his London home; Abbey Road Studios engineer Chris Blair, who worked with artists from Kate Bush to Radiohead to the Arctic Monkeys; John Kovac, longtime manager of The Seekers, in Melbourne's Alfred Hospital following a mild heart complaint. The Seekers split in 1968, but have staged a number of reunion tours, including their 25th anniversary 100-plus dates tour in 1993.

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