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Remember singer-songwriter James Blunt the mega hit You’re Beautiful?

British singer James Blunt has said he wants to become a Swiss citizen after living in the tax-friendly country for the past five years. ‘As soon as the authorities will let me, because I don’t know if I’ve been here a sufficiently long time, I would like to become Swiss,’ he told a Swiss newspaper at the weekend. ‘Verbier is my home,’ said the 38-year-old multi-millionaire, who bought a chalet in the ski resort in 2005.

Blunt has spoken of taking a break from his musical career, propelled in 2005 when the multimillion album seller, Back to Bedlam, first brought him to fame. His three albums have sold 18 million copies. Meanwhile, Blunt revealed his unusual plans for New Year’s Eve: ‘I want to run around the resort disguised as a cow.’

It might take his mind off ugly rumours that surfaced in the UK last month linking him to a tax scandal, insisting attempts to question his contribution to the nation’s finances are a ‘witch-hunt’.The You’re Beautiful star hit headlines when it emerged his name was on a leaked list of HSBC bank customers with an offshore account on the Channel Island of Jersey.

The list, which also contains the identities of several other high-profile Brits, has sparked a tax probe by officials at Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs, but Blunt is adamant his banking practices are legitimate and insists he pays his fair share into the UK’s public purse.

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Buzz Track: Land of the Innocent

Austin Texas based Feathers just signed a publishing deal. The group has already played some impressive gigs with Washed Out, The Duke Spirit, Robyn along with slots at All Tomorrow’s Parties (Minehead, UK), Austin Psych Fest and FunFunFun fest. Several songs from their forthcoming album have already landed syncs including on The Vampire Diaries. The group have recently completed their debut album which they plan to release in 2013.
Contact: khagan@skhmusic.com

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Depeche Mode has signed a new worldwide deal with Columbia Records and will release a new album in March 2013.

“Depeche Mode is one of the greatest rock bands of the modern era,” Columbia Records CEO Rob Stringer said. “Despite selling millions of albums over many years they have still maintained a freshness and mystique in all aspects of their career and are truly a global band with huge fanbases in literally every country. Their new album is unique and invigorating and their best work for ages and we are excited to be involved with Depeche Mode as a worldwide company.”

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Buzz Track: It’s Going Down

Texas native D’Lannie is making herself known in the pop/hip-hop music industry, working with some of the hottest producers. She is currently working with Authentic TV network on an upcoming reality TV show that will be aired on TLC. She is also featured in Taylor Swift’s new upcoming music video “TROUBLE”. D’Lannie has performed all over the Dallas metroplex including well known clubs such as The Prophet Bar and House Of Blues.
Contact: kwmbrown@gmail.com

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Critics were queueing up to pronounce The X Factor terminally ill last night, as its final sees male singers with varying degrees of street cred vying for a somewhat tarnished winner’s crown. Simon Cowell, driving force behind the show, was under mounting pressure to step in, with ratings and ad revenues down significantly on previous series. Once the dominant presence in living rooms across the country every weekend, the show is now beaten regularly in the ratings by BBC1’s rival show Strictly Come Dancing, which attracts up to 2 million more viewers.

A series of lacklustre winners in previous years, along with the departure of Cowell from the judging panel, has led to a long-term decline in the once unstoppable programme’s fortunes. Viewing figures last weekend were 40 per cent below the equivalent semi-final show two years ago, the last year Cowell was a judge. Read more here

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