Hello Spain

Music News, Tid-Bits and Other Morsels

Sharing En Espanol

If you deplorable evil-doers who download music for free on the Internet love it so much, why don't you move to Spain! In that country, what some are calling a historic ruling was handed down by Judge Paz Aldecoa, who threw out a case against a man who was accused of sharing music online and faced two years in jail. Aldecoa's dismissal is drawing a lot of attention because it is believed to be one of the first official declarations that "personal use" of downloaded music is not a crime. Aldecoa said in her judgment that what the man had done wasn't illegal because "the aim is not to gain wealth illegally but to obtain private copies." The Spanish recording industry is appealing the case, insisting P2P sharing is illegal in Spain. If the ruling holds up, could Madrid become the new Amsterdam for LimeWire addicts?

Lips To Get Alley?

In Cincinnati, we have streets named after civil rights fighters like Fred Shuttlesworth and (like every major American city) Martin Luther King Jr., as well as sports legends like Pete Rose and Ezzard Charles. In Oklahoma City, officials are currently debating whether to name three streets after the city's greatest musical exports — Country fave Vince Gill, Jazz guitar pioneer Charlie Christian and, strangest of all, Psych Pop heroes The Flaming Lips. The Flaming Lips Alley proposal is drawing the most attention, with some locals unsure The Lips deserve to have any street named after them — let alone the reportedly dumpster-strewn strip of land in the city's Bricktown area. According to a story in the daily Oklahoman, Theresa Hickman, whose husband owns buildings in the area, is heading up the opposition, citing the band's name as "laughable" and saying there are others more worthy of the honor.

Who? She suggested Color Me Badd — whose lead singer has been arrested twice in the past year for drunk driving — or Jim Brewer, who owns a parking lot in the area. If Brewer was actually in Color Me Badd (and we suspect there's a pretty good chance) then all the better. Could Nick Lachey Lane or Carmen Elektra Boulevard be next in Cincy?

Swede Whacker

Musicians, in their between-song banter, can often say the darndest, dumbest things — "This is from the new album," "We've got four more," "This next one's called 'Freebird.' " Making John Kerry's "botched joke" look like a flawless Richard Pryor routine and the Dixie Chicks' onstage "outbursts" sound like something Toby Keith might utter between "I Crap Red, White and Blue" and "Country Music Made Me Famous, 9/11 Made Me Rich" (or whatever his songs are called), Ola Salo of Swedish Glam Rock band The Ark got a lesson in campaign season hypersensitivity when he made an off-handed quip about planes flying into the White House during a free concert in Washington, D.C. Late last month, as the band was playing an event celebrating the new location of the Swedish embassy, Salo saw a plane flying overhead and said, "In this country, you don't know where those planes are headed. Well, this one seems to be heading in the right direction, anyway — the White House." DOH! In fine American tradition, the band is rumored to have received death threats, but they say the shows subsequently cancelled after the D.C. gaff were a result of "exhaustion." Swedish dignitaries denounced the statement — which reportedly resulted in cheers and laughs from the audience — and Salo himself apologized, telling the Washington Post, "Sometimes when I'm onstage, it's my mouth moving and not connected to my brain." Hey, that's Bush's line!

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