- BUSTIN’ CAPS: Local farmers markets may be a lot quieter this season: Market organizers have been told they can’t have live music unless they pay licensing fees. The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, which collects licensing fees on copyrighted music and has previously cracked down on Portland restaurants and bars, told markets to pay up, cut off the music or risk being sued. This applies even if performers plan to play only original music, because they might play a cover. ASCAP charges venues “something like $40 a day,” according to Portland Farmers Market executive director Trudy Toliver. “In 2010, they started sending threatening letters. If you don’t pay, they’ll sue you.” The other licensing organization, Broadcast Music Inc., hasn’t contacted Portland markets yet. “I don’t have anything against protecting musical copyright,” Toliver says, “but ASCAP’s system is taking away that beautiful place where music and food come together.” ASCAP didn’t respond to WW’s inquiries.
- SPYING SPIES: The next two actors planning to pull a Fred Armisen by pretending to be Oregonians: Robert De Niro and Shia LaBeouf. The actors are in talks with Paramount to star in Spy’s Kid, based on a newspaper series by Oregonian reporter Bryan Denson. Denson’s 2011 articles detailed how Jim Nicholson—the highest-ranking CIA officer convicted of espionage—roped his son Nathan into selling secrets to the Russians. D.J. Caruso has been tapped to direct, but no screenwriter is in place. “It feels a lot like an updated version of Catch Me If You Can,” producer Scott Glassgold tells Scoop. Denson says Nathan Nicholson “didn’t understand fully what he was doing,” adding that “he is the most likable, lovable protagonist you will ever meet.”
- POWER UP: KPSU, the radio station at Portland State University, is looking to expand its reach. The station is raising money to purchase a low-power FM signal
via the federal Local Community Radio Act of 2010, which made it
possible for nonprofit, community-based radio stations to grab the
slivers of airspace left between all those Clear Channel stations. The
100-watt signal would take the station’s programming off campus and make
it available to greater Portland, up to a five-mile radius. To
raise the money needed to purchase the signal and proper equipment, KPSU
is holding a series of fundraising events through May, including a
late-night cruise-slash-concert on the Portland Spirit featuring
performances by Onuinu and Grandparents, and a “car smash” at Slabtown
in which donors can pay up to $5 to bash a vehicle with a sledgehammer.