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US rap star Jay Z will make a $56-million foray into the music streaming business by taking over the Norwegian service Wimp, its shareholders confirmed Friday. The platinum-selling artist and record producer Jay Z used his controlling stake in Project Panther Bidco to launch the 464-million-kronor ($56-million, 49-million-euro) bid for Aspiro, the Swedish-listed company behind Wimp. "I think they will be a better owner to lift Aspiro and its advanced music streaming service to a new level," said Trond Berger, the financial director of Norwegian media group Shibsted, currently Aspiro's majority owner. He said in a statement that Jay Z's company "has adequate financial resources and a high level of competence in the music industry".
Offer Roberto Ceretti a fortune for one of his coveted hand-made guitars and he'll likely turn you down: the Italian craftsman may be in demand among collectors, but only plies his trade for top musicians in need. Tucked away in the hills of north-west Italy, Ceretti's workshop is hung with half-finished models, the walls lined with stacks of cedar, mahogany and apple wood, and a large drawing board is littered with classical guitar designs. It didn't work of course, but the passion stuck," said Ceretti, 50, who began his business in earnest 15 years ago after transforming his run-down holiday home in the Piedmont woods into an atelier. Now he makes between five and six guitars a year, selling them for a song to help musicians hit hard by the economic crisis and cuts in culture budgets.
Spike Jonze directed the video for West's collaboration with Paul McCartney.