Billboard Bits: Bruce Springsteen, Tricky, Sam Phillips
News on Bruce Springsteen, Tricky, Sam Phillips, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Alanis Morissette, Ed Kowalczyk, guitarist Marc Ribot, drummer Carla Azar, Gillian Welch, Van Dyke Parks, T-Bone Burnett, DJ MugA three-member panel in Geneva, Switzerland, refused to grant Bruce Springsteen's request that a Canadian man and his fan club relinquish the Web address, www.brucespringsteen.com. The loss before the World Intellectual Property Association was a rare one for a celebrity. Actresses Julia Roberts and Nicole Kidman, singer Madonna, and others have taken such disputes to the panel and won.
The tribunal ruled that Jeff Burgar had demonstrated he had some rights or legitimate interest in the Web address name. They also said Springsteen failed to show the name was registered and used in bad faith, noting the artist had no evidence that Burgar ever tried to sell the name.
Tricky, previously signed to Island/Def Jam, has inked a new deal with Hollywood Records, Billboard Bulletin reports. Guests on his as-yet-untitled July label debut include the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Alanis Morissette, and Live's Ed Kowalczyk. The deal is worldwide, except for the U.K., where he is on Epitaph's Anti imprint, also home to Tom Waits and Merle Haggard.
Earlier this week, the trip-hop pioneer released the four-song EP "Mission Accomplished" for the latter label. Tricky left Island/Def Jam following the disappointing sales of his most recent album "Juxtapose," on which he collaborated with former Cypress Hill member DJ Muggs. The set peaked at No. 182 on The Billboard 200.
-- Melinda Newman, L.A.
Acclaimed singer/songwriter Sam Phillips has signed with eclectic imprint Nonesuch Records. The label will release "Fan Dance," her first all new studio album since 1996's "Omnipop." Produced by her husband T-Bone Burnett -- himself fresh from music composition duties on the Coen Brothers film "O Brother, Where Are Thou?" -- the set features guitarist Marc Ribot and drummer Carla Azar, plus contributions from Gillian Welch and Van Dyke Parks.
"This is a dry, thirsty, disconnected record that was performed rather than produced," Phillips says. "No hi-gloss, no big splash intended. We're all wet from big splashes these days. I just want to whisper in a few people's ears."
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
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