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Volume 24 No. 178
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          If it were up to the Verve, Nike "never would have
     received permission" to use their song "Bitter Sweet
     Symphony" as the "cornerstone" of the company's new "I Can"
     campaign, according to Eric Boelhert of ROLLING STONE. 
     However, due to a "tangled web of music-publishing rights,"
     the decision "wasn't really [the Verve's] to make."  Since
     "Bitter Sweet Symphony" includes a sample of the Rolling
     Stones song "The Last Time," ABKCO, which owns the
     copyrights to many early Stones songs, "took control of"
     rights to the song last year.  Rather than allowing ABKCO to
     sell a "sound-alike" version to advertisers, the Verve
     "decided to license their actual recording" to one major
     advertiser, hoping to "deter others from wanting to buy the
     publishing rights."  Nike, which paid $700,000 for the
     rights, beat out Budweiser, Coca-Cola, GM and others.  ABKCO
     received $350,000 in the deal, while the Verve took home 
     $175,000.  Two weeks after the Nike ads debuted during the
     NFL playoffs, the Verve's album "Urban Hyms" rose 34 spots
     on the Billboard charts to No. 36, its "highest point since
     its release."  The group's manager, Jazz Summers, "concedes
     that the ad may help generate the Verve's U.S.
     breakthrough."  Nike's Business Affairs Manager Mark
     Thomashow, who handled the deal, said that the band will
     also "be heading to Paris this summer" after requesting
     tickets to the World Cup (ROLLING STONE, 3/5 issue).