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HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE

Saturday
Nov222014

Jackson Browne, Robert Plant Featured on Season Finale of PBS' "Austin City Limits"

Erika Goldring/Getty Images for Americana MusicThe season finale of the long-running PBS performance series Austin City Limits will premiere Saturday at 9 p.m. ET.  The show will feature highlights from the 2014 Americana Music Association's 13th annual Honors and Awards ceremony, which took place this past September at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.

The event included performances by Jackson Browne, Robert Plant, Rosanne Cash, folk-blues veteran Taj Mahal and country legend Loretta Lynn.  Browne was honored with the Spirit of Americana Award at the ceremony, and during his appearance he performed "The Long Way Around," a song from his new album, Standing in the Breach.  Plant, meanwhile, joined his one-time musical and romantic partner Patty Griffin for a rendition of her tune "Ohio."

You can watch a video preview of Browne's performance now at RollingStone.com.

Here's a complete set list for Saturday's Austin City Limits episode:

"Feather's Not a Bird" -- Rosanne Cash
"Truck Stop Gospel" -- Parker Millsap
"Coal Miner's Daughter"-- Loretta Lynn
"Snake Eyes" -- The Milk Carton Kids
"You Can't Judge a Book" -- Americana All-Star Band
"Ingrato Amor" -- Flaco Jimenez
"The Long Way Around" -- Jackson Browne
"Grass Is Greener" -- St. Paul & the Broken Bones
"You Can't Be Told" -- Valerie June
"Ohio" -- Patty Griffin & Robert Plant
"Statesboro Blues" -- Taj Mahal
"Cover Me Up" -- Jason Isbell
"Life of Sin" -- Sturgill Simpson


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Nov222014

R.E.M. Documentary Making Television Debut on Saturday

Image Courtesy of REMHQ.comR.E.M. by MTV, the new documentary exploring the relationship between the legendary band and the music network, will be making its television debut on Saturday.  The documentary will air at 9 p.m. ET on VH1 Classic and Palladia.

R.E.M. and MTV have been linked since they both began -- the Rock and Roll Hall of Famers released their first album in 1981 just weeks before MTV premiered its first video.  Directed by Alexander Young, R.E.M. by MTV exclusively uses archival footage to trace the history between the two rising stars.

"It occurred to us that there's all this footage of some of the band's absolute career highlights sitting in some MTV vaults in London and New York -- and thanks to a lot of effort and digging and arranging, this is our chance to share that music with various generations of R.E.M. fans in a pretty unique release," says longtime R.E.M. manager Bertis Downs.  "And Alexander Young's documentary is a fine way to tell the story of R.E.M. through its various twists and turns, as captured in real time by MTV's cameras -- it has some great funny bits too!"

R.E.M. by MTV is part of a six-DVD collection entitled REMTV, which includes more than 14 hours of material.  REMTV will be released on Monday, November 24.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Nov222014

Mary J. Blige on Getting Sober, Why She Could've Helped Amy Winehouse

Image Courtesy Peter Kramer/NBCMary J. Blige is opening up about her life struggling with alcohol and cocaine.

In this week's Billboard cover story, the singer candidly discussed maintaining her sobriety, following two sober years since last drinking. "I've done those things for so long," she says. "I would stop drinking and then I'd start again. This is the second time that I've stopped drinking. It's peaks and valleys, peaks and valleys."

While promoting her upcoming album, The London Sessions, Blige reflected on one of the low moments of her career back in 1994. "I was ready to just check out," she recalls and credits her turnaround to husband and manager, Kendu Isaacs.

Unlike other entertainers, Mary never entered rehab to cope with her addictions. Still, the singer says she felt "connected to [Amy Winehouse] in terms of the darkness," and still believes she might have helped her.

"I would tell so many people, 'I need to talk to her, I need to get to her,'" she says. "Especially when my life turned around and I chose life. I wanted to somehow get to her, to tell her, 'It's OK to choose life.' "

The issue will be available newsstands Monday, November 24.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Nov222014

Ashley Monroe and Dan + Shay Head "Home for the Holidays"

Warner Bros. NashvilleAshley Monroe and Dan + Shay are set to sing alongside Jennifer Hudson, Train, Earth, Wind & Fire and Katharine McPhee on the upcoming A Home for the Holidays special. This is the 16th year for the Christmas tradition that pairs musical performances with heartwarming stories of children adopted from foster care.  The show airs Friday, December 19 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.

Ashley also recorded a new version of the Amy Grant classic "Tennessee Christmas" for Amazon's new All Is Bright holiday playlist.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Nov222014

Song Bruno Mars Will Sing on "SNL" Is One of the "Favorite Things That He's Ever Done," Says Producer

Dana Edelson/NBCBruno Mars returns to the Saturday Night Live stage this weekend for a performance with his pal, super-producer Mark Ronson.  The song they'll be performing is "Uptown Funk," the lead single from Ronson's upcoming album Uptown Special. Ronson tells Billboard, "I know that it’s one of Bruno’s favorite things that he’s ever done.”

Ronson tells Billboard that Bruno co-wrote "Uptown Funk" and he also played drums on the album.  However, he was hard to lock down for the sessions, since he was on tour at the time.  "It was six or seven months of chasing Bruno around on tour,” says Ronson, who produced "Locked Out of Heaven" and other songs on Bruno's album, Unorthodox Jukebox

Cameron Diaz is the host for Saturday night's episode.  She, Bruno and Ronson star in a series of promos for the show.

The last time Bruno was on Saturday Night Live was in 2012, and he served as both host and musical guest.  He first appeared on the show in 2010.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Nov222014

American Music Awards Live Pre-Show Features Jordin Sparks, Lance Bass, Gavin DeGraw, Mary Lambert 

Dick Clark ProductionsBefore you tune into ABC Sunday night for the American Music Awards, you'll be able to check out the star-studded pre-show, which will stream live at Yahoo! starting at 5 p.m. ET.

The Coca Cola Red Carpet LIVE! pre-show will feature three hours of celebrity interviews, behind-the-scenes footage and live performances.  Hosting the festivities will be Jordin Sparks, Lance Bass, Gavin DeGraw, Ariana Grande's brother Frankie Grande, and others.  Performances from Mary Lambert, Becky G and Ella Henderson will round out the event.

Mary Lambert, who's a veteran of the MTV VMAs and The Grammy Awards, says she's looking forward to her performance of her hit, "Secrets."

"I usually have a lot of fun at award shows.  I have an awesome time," Mary tells ABC News Radio. "And for me it's just like a big party, and it feels really cool to be performing at an award show with, y'know, a song that I sort of 'birthed,' I guess.  And I'm stoked for people to see it." 


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Usher Delayed Album So He Could "Put the Soul" in It

Image Courtesy RCA/Saccenti

Usher is giving more details surrounding the delay of his eighth album, which no longer has a release date.

In an interview with MTV News, the crooner reveals that one of reasons he pushed it back is because he “hadn’t put the soul of it in yet.”

“The record company will be shocked, but I didn’t plan on putting out an album this year because I just didn’t feel like I was ready,” Usher explained. “This is a very important and significant album for me. It’s my eighth album, I don’t know if it’s something about that number.”

The singer, who is currently on his UR Experience Tour, adds that he's taking his time.

“I’m approaching it with empathy and appreciation for everything and everyone that has shown support for me throughout all of these years so I want to make sure that it’s true,” he said. “And it truly does represent where I am, but also it makes people feel like they need to move and do something.”

The singer adds that the album could potentially arrive at the “top of the year.”


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Paul McCartney Loves Dylan's Contribution to Tribute Album, but Isn't Sure If Everyone Will

MPL/Mary McCartneyThe star-studded Paul McCartney tribute album The Art of McCartney was released this past week, featuring renditions of the rock legend's songs by such luminaries as Bob Dylan, Billy Joel, Brian Wilson, Roger Daltrey and many many more.  During a BBC Radio interview Wednesday, McCartney himself chatted about the compilation, marveling about the "amazing people" the producers got to take part in the project.

One star McCartney said he was particularly glad contributed to the record was Dylan, although he admitted that the lauded singer/songwriter's weathered vocals might not be everyone's cup of tea.

"[With] his croaky old voice…he's doing one of my songs called 'Things We Said Today,'" Sir Paul pointed out in the interview, before proceeding to imitate Bob's rendition.  Macca added, "I think I was saying…'If I started singing like that they'd shoot me.'  Bob's great, you know.  I love it…It's just, you're either a fan or you're not, and I'm a big fan of his."

McCartney also revealed that The Art of McCartney producer Ralph Sall had asked him to take part in the recording, but he didn't think it was a good idea.

"I said, 'Well, I can't, 'cause if it's a tribute I've got to just sort of be thankful they're doing it.  I can't get involved in my own tribute,'" he recalls.  "So I just let them get on with it.  He's done a good job, really."

Meanwhile, McCartney reported that the next project he's focusing on is an animated feature film based on a 2005 children's book he co-wrote called High in the Clouds.  Sir Paul said his "main job is to do the music," but he also will voice one of the characters in the movie.

The former Beatle also talked a little bit about "Hope for the Future," the theme song he wrote for the recently released video game Destiny that's expected to be issued as a single soon.

McCartney's BBC Radio interview is streaming now at BBC.co.uk.  His segment begins at about the 37-minute mark.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Melissa Etheridge, Cyndi Lauper, Bryan Adams & Robin Thicke Perform at Grammy Foundation Legacy Concert

ABC/Lou RoccoOn February 5, three days before the Grammy Awards, Grammy winners Melissa Etheridge, Cyndi Lauper, Bryan Adams and country legend Willie Nelson will headline a special concert event called "Lean on Me: A Celebration of Music and Philanthropy." 

The event is the 17th annual concert staged by the Grammy Foundation, and it's designed to highlight the Foundation's efforts to preserve our musical legacy.  Also on the bill are Grammy nominee Robin Thicke, as well as Aloe Blacc.  The theme of the event is the evolution of music's role in helping charitable causes, and so the concert will celebrate iconic charity songs and concerts.

More artists will be added to the bill. Tickets to the event, which will take place at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles, cost $45 and are on sale now at GrammyFoundation.org.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Meghan Trainor, Nick Jonas, Jennifer Hudson to Perform on "Dancing with the Stars" Finale 

Brooke Nipar/Epic RecordsThe Dancing with the Stars season 19 finale airs on Tuesday, and the show will feature performances by some top musical talent.

Meghan Trainor will appear on the show performing a medley of "All About That Bass" and "Lips Are Movin'," and Nick Jonas will take the stage to perform his new hit "Jealous."  In addition, Jennifer Hudson is teaming with English electronic duo Gorgon City to perform a song called "Go All Night."

The remaining couples on the show are Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star Alfonso Ribeiro and his partner Witney Carson, YouTube star Bethany Mota and her partner Derek Hough, Pretty Little Liars star Janel Parrish and her partner Val Chmerkovskiy, and Duck Dynasty star Sadie Robertson and her partner Mark Ballas.  One couple will waltz off with the coveted Mirror Ball trophy at the end of Tuesday night's show.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

LBT's Kimberly Schlapman Wants You to Lend a Ham This Holiday Season

Sandbox EntertainmentThis holiday season, Kimberly Schlapman from Little Big Town wants you to lend a ham. The play on words is part of a campaign to inspire folks to donate food to feed hungry families.

"I'm excited to join Smithfield in their effort to lend a ham to those in need this season," Kimberly says with a wink. "Since I was a little girl, Smithfield has always been a part of my family's holiday tradition, and to now have the opportunity to help provide that to someone in need means the world to me."

For every act of kindness posted on Twitter or the Smithfield Facebook page with the hashtag #LendAHam, the company will donate a serving of protein to a local food bank. Kimberly also teamed up with Smithfield to surprise Thanksgiving shoppers with $100 gift cards, in hopes of inspiring them to do good deeds themselves. You can see the video that captures Kimberly going undercover as a grocery cashier on YouTube.

The campaign goes through Christmas Eve, with Smithfield planning to donate up to a million servings to help feed the hungry this holiday season.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Rixton to Release Ed Sheeran-Penned Song "Hotel Ceiling" as Next Single, Debut Album Now Due in March

Image credit: Lindsey ByrnesFollowing their hits "Me and My Broken Heart" and "Wait on Me," Rixton's next single will be "Hotel Ceiling," a track which was co-written Ed Sheeran.

A video for the song is due in January, and they'll perform the track live January 6 on ABC's Good Morning America.  If you pre-order Rixton's debut album Let the Road, you'll get a download of "Hotel Ceiling" instantly.  The album, initially due on January 6, will now be released on March 3.

On Black Friday, fans in Minnesota will be able to pre-order a copy of Let the Road with the band in attendance: on Black Friday, November 28, they're doing a concert in the Rotunda of the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota.

Rixton will open for Ariana Grande on her upcoming North American tour, which starts February 25, and on her European tour, which starts May 15.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Smashing Pumpkins Release New Song, "Drum + Fife" 

Image Courtesy of Martha's MusicThe Smashing Pumpkins have released another song from their forthcoming album, Monuments to an Elegy. The new track, "Drum + Fife," is inspired by Irish folk music while also incorporating electronic beats and loops. You can stream "Drum + Fife" on NME's website.

"'Drum + Fife' was originally a folk song. We really had a problem getting it off its almost dour Irish balladeer aspect," Billy Corgan tells NME. "I must give a lot of credit to Tommy Lee, because he’s the one who turned the corner."

Corgan explains that Lee, who plays drums on Monuments to an Elegy, used his experience in dance music to give "Drum + Fife" its electronic elements.

"It’s almost like mid 80s new wave or something and it reminded me a little bit of early U2 or Big Country," Corgan continues. "The open strut made the Irish ballad part of the song come alive and have more of a expansive quality and from there on it got a lot easier."

Monuments to an Elegy will be released December 9. The Pumpkins also have a second new album in the works, Day and Night, which is due out next year.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Revealed: Why Taylor Swift Won't Show Her Belly Button

Sarah Barlow/Big Machine RecordsRemember that Saturday Night Live parody "Swiftamine," where the announcer cracked that Taylor Swift is "always wearing a 1950s bathing suit?"  Well, one design detail of those kind of suits is that they don't reveal your belly button.  In fact, Taylor is almost always photographed in high-waisted ensembles that completely cover her navel.  Why won't she show it off?  

"I don’t like showing my belly button," explains Taylor in the new issue of Lucky magazine. "When you start showing your belly button then you’re really committing to the midriff thing. I only partially commit to the midriff thing -- you’re only seeing lower rib cage. I don’t want people to know if I have one or not. I want that to be a mystery." 

Cultivating an air of mystery seems to be an ongoing theme with Taylor: she recently said that's why she only wanted to show half her face on the cover of her latest album, 1989.

"As far as anyone knows based on my public appearances, they haven’t seen evidence of a belly button. It could be pierced," she laughs. "They have no idea. If I’m going to get some sort of massive tattoo, it’s going to be right next to my belly button because no one’s ever going to see that.”

You can read more with Taylor in the December/January issue of Lucky.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

Friday
Nov212014

Trisha Yearwood and Lady A Go Viral for No Shave November

Image Courtesy Vector ManagementTrisha Yearwood and Lady Antebellum are going viral for No Shave November. Typically, for the campaign, men grow beards and mustaches to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. But when Trisha heard about a female friend in the business who vowed not to shave her legs for the month, she decided to help her out, taping a YouTube video that changed the words of her first hit to “She’s Got Leg Hair Like a Boy.”

Then, Lady A got in on the act, with a little help from Meghan Trainor. The trio changed the lyrics of “All About That Bass” to “I’m all about that beard, no stubble.” So far, Team Lady Antebellum has more than tripled its $1,000 fundraising goal, with more than a week still left in the month. Meanwhile, Trisha’s friend has raised nearly thirteen times her $100 goal.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Beyonce Teases Two New Songs, “7/11″ & “Ring Off”

Nick Farrell/Sony Music

Beyonce has recorded two new songs for the expanded re-release of her self-titled album, although the tracks have leaked online she's now giving fans an official preview of  “7/11″ and “Ring Off.”

90-second snippets of each song were posted on her SoundCloud page and offer two different sounds. On the Mike Caren-produced “Ring Off,” Bey draws inspirations from her mother Tina Knowles, who found love again after divorcing Bey's father Matthew Knowles

“You took that ring off / So tired of the lies and trying, crying, fighting / Took that ring off,” sings Bey. “Oh, and now the fun begins / Dust yourself off and you love again / You found a new man, now you shine and you’re fine like it’s my time.”

Meanwhile, the R&B banger “7/11,” produced by Detail,  will surely remind fans of Bey's 2007 hit "Get Me Bodied."

“Smack that, clap that like you don’t care,” she sings. “My hands up, my hands up, flexing with my hands up.”

The new, platinum edition box set arrives on Monday, November 24. The two-CD, two-DVD-set will include four unreleased remixes with Pharrell, Nicki Minaj, Kanye West and Jay Z.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Train, Earth Wind & Fire, Rixton & Jennifer Hudson to Perform on "A Home for the Holidays"

Pamela Litky/Columbia RecordsThis year's edition of the CBS special A Home for the Holidays will include the musical talents of Train, Earth Wind & Fire, Rixton, Jennifer Hudson and more.

As always, the show will feature uplifting stories about families whose lives have been changed by adoption from foster care.  Celebrity presenters, some of whom have had their own adoption experiences, or who are involved in children's issues, will also be part of the show.

Also on the bill for the special are Katharine McPhee, Ashley Monroe -- who duetted with Train on their single, "Bruises" -- Jillian Michaels and country duo Dan + Shay.   It airs December 19 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Train, Rixton, Jennifer Hudson & More to Perform on "A Home for the Holidays"

Pamela Litky/Columbia RecordsThis year's edition of the CBS special A Home for the Holidays will include the musical talents of Train, Rixton, Jennifer Hudson and more.

As always, the show will feature uplifting stories about real-life families whose lives have been changed by adoption from foster care.  Celebrity presenters, some of whom have had their own adoption experiences, or who are involved in children's issues, will also be part of the show.

Also on the bill for the special are legendary R&B group Earth Wind & Fire, Katharine McPhee, Ashley Monroe -- who duetted with Train on their single, "Bruises" -- Jillian Michaels, and country duo Dan + Shay.   It airs December 19 at 9 p.m. ET/PT.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Harry Styles Denies Rumor He Gave Taylor Swift 1,989 Roses

Peter Kramer/NBCAlthough he reportedly inspired a few songs on Taylor Swift's latest album, 1989, her ex-boyfriend Harry Styles didn't help her celebrate the album's success by sending her roses.  Lots of them.

Australia's New Weekly magazine claimed the One Direction member sent Taylor 1,989 roses after her album did so well on the charts, but Harry says it must've been someone else.

"I know about the rumor. I don't know anything about the roses," he said, laughing, on Friday's Ellen DeGeneres Show. "I think it might have been someone else and I may have falsely taken [credit]."

Taylor and Harry split in 2013.  Harry was allegedly the inspiration for the song "Out of the Woods" and, perhaps, other songs on 1989.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Friday
Nov212014

Hinder Announces New Album, Unveil New Single, "Hit the Ground"

Image Courtesy of Jeremy CharlesHinder has returned, and they've brought a new lead singer with them. Not only has the band announced they'll release a new album -- their fifth -- in 2015, the currently-untitled record will be Hinder's first with new lead singer Nolan Neal, who replaced Austin Winkler after Winkler departed the band last year.

In addition to the album announcement, Hinder has also unveiled a new song, "Hit the Ground." The new track starts off with an acoustic guitar that contains the slightest bit of country before the band launches into the hard rock chorus. "Hit the Ground" is streaming now on Billboard.

"One thing that I've learned since we started this journey over 10 years ago is that nobody is invincible," drummer Cody Hanson tells Billboard. "['Hit the Ground'] is one of my favorite songs on the album because I know how true and real these lyrics are. We've lived and experienced every single line in this song. We can't even begin to tell you how excited we are to share it with our fans and get this new chapter started."

The new album will be Hinder's follow-up to 2012's Welcome to the Freak Show.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio