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HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE

Thursday
Aug292013

OneRepublic's Latest Hit Inspired by Past Failures

Facebook.com/OneRepublicOneRepublic kicks off a big tour Thursday night with Sara Bareilles in their home state of Colorado.  One song they're sure to play at that gig is their latest hit, "Counting Stars," which looks back to a time when they weren't playing to sold-out venues and racking up hits.

"That was one of the quickest lyrical songs on the whole album," lead singer Ryan Tedder tells ABC News Radio. "I mean, I sat down and it was, 'Lately, I've been I've been losing sleep dreaming about the things that we could be.'"  According to Ryan, those words were inspired by his own life, during a time when it looked like the band wasn't going to make it, and he felt like a failure.

"All I was thinking about was how many years I laid awake in bed, not sleeping, or woke up and I would sit there thinking, 'I'm not as far along as I should be' for the age that I was at," he recalls.  "When I was 25, 26, when we got dropped [from our record label], I remember that whole next year just laying in bed going, 'Is this my life?'"

"The thing that I wanted to be, that I wanted to do, just got ripped away from me," Ryan says recalling that dark time. "And now I'm worrying about, like, 'How are we going to move out of this apartment?  I'm so sick of worrying about money.  I'm so sick of stressing about money.'"

Ryan says he wrote the song "thinking of the day when the more important thing is counting stars, [not] counting dollars," adding, "That's what inspired it, which I think a lot of people can connect with."  

Of course, these days Ryan doesn't have to worry about money.  Not only is OneRepublic successful, but he's made tons of cash himself, writing hits for the likes of Adele, Kelly Clarkson, Beyonce, Maroon 5 and Gavin DeGraw.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

John Mayer Can't Sing Old Hits, Doesn't Care About Scoring New Ones

Image Courtesy John Mayer via InstagramJohn Mayer's current tour is his first following his recovery for the vocal issues that kept him silent for months.  But he says he's still feeling the effects of those problems, and that's reflected in his set lists every night.

Speaking to Time magazine as part of its 10 Questions video series, John says that some of the earlier songs that fans love are just too high for him to sing these days.  "All the early stuff, I can't do that full voice right now," he says.  John explains that his two most recent albums, Born and Raised and his new one, Paradise Valley, both "stem from this inability to sing higher."

But old songs or not, John's current shows are still being well-received, and the singer says he doesn't mind that at the moment, he's not ruling the charts with pop hits like "Your Body Is a Wonderland."  In fact, he says, he's not too concerned about anything these days.

"I'm not worried anymore, period," he tells Time.  "I'm not worried about pop hits. I'm not worried about sales, relevance...I care about one thing: tell your story. If you're on your sixth record and you're 35, you should be following wherever the road takes you."

Well, John does care a little: he recently posted a photo of himself posing with a cake celebrating the #2 debut of Paradise Valley on the Billboard chart this week. 

"My friends know me too well," he captioned the photo.  "An 'I'm Number Two' cake to celebrate Paradise Valley's second place debut on the album charts. It's not about coming in at number one every time. It's about MUSIC!!!! Thanks to everyone who bought a copy and hope you're still digging it. Love ya."

John's Paradise Valley tour arrives in Saratoga Springs, New York on Friday night.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Icona Pop Postpones West Coast Tour Dates Due to Illness

IconaPop.comIcona Pop's West Coast tour dates have been postponed because one member of the duo is sick.

Icona Pop's Aino has been ordered by her doctor to rest, and as a result, the dates the duo had scheduled through September 2 in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Vancouver have all been put on hold.  The tour will resume September 6 in Salt Lake City as scheduled, and the postponed dates will be rescheduled for later this year.

In a statement, the other member of the duo, Caroline, said, "We cannot tell you how sad we are and how much these shows meant to us. Our fans are so important to us and we live to perform on stage for you each night. We promise we'll be back and will see you soon! In the meantime, please send lots of love and good energy Aino's way!"

Icona Pop's debut album, This Is...Icona Pop, will be out September 24.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" Requested By Venus Williams at the U.S. Open

Facebook.com/RobinThicke

Many would agree that Robin Thicke's ubiquitous hit single, "Blurred Lines" featuring Pharrell and T.I., has been the song of the summer. So it should come as no surprise that the dance track was requested to be played during the 2013 U.S. Open.

Tennis champ Venus Williams personally selected the party anthem to be played at the tournament’s opening ceremony at Arthur Ashe Stadium, in Queens, New York, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Upon registering for the event, Williams and other athletes are usually asked by organizers to list three songs they like, said Michael Fiur, who directs entertainment at the U.S. Open. On Monday, Venus' sister Serena Williams warmed up to Lenny Kravitz's "American Woman" while other tennis stars have enjoyed tunes like will.i.am's "This Is Love" and LMFAO's "Party Rock Anthem."

In other Robin news, the singer's massive hit has spent 12 weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 chart and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs and a 15th week at number one on the R&B Songs.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Jay-Z & Justin Timberlake's "Holy Grail" Is First Video Ever to Premiere Exclusively on Facebook

Lester Cohen/WireImageJay-Z is always on the cutting edge when it comes to social media and technology.  The video for his Justin Timberlake-assisted single "Holy Grail" has become the first ever to premiere exclusively via Facebook.

The decision to debut the cinematic video on the social networking site makes sense: Jay has 17 million likes on Facebook, while Justin has 24 million.  And let's not forget that Justin starred in the movie The Social Network, which is about the founding of Facebook.

The Anthony Mandler-directed clip, complete with a giant mansion, dark imagery and ghostly dancers, will remain on the site for 24 hours. The five-minute visual follows the release of Jay's clip for  "Picasso Baby," which premiered earlier this month.

"Holy Grail," which was produced by Timbaland, is currently #6 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Jay's latest album, Magna Carta… Holy Grail, can be purchased now.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Jake Owen's "Days of Gold" Helping Usher in College Football Season Saturday Night

RCA NashvilleJake Owen's latest hit, "Days of God," will help usher in the new season of college football this weekend. Clips of the "Days of Gold" video will air as the Georgia Bulldogs take on the Clemson Tigers Saturday night at 8 ET on ABC.

"Going to college football games, tailgating and living it up with friends is right on track with what Days of Gold’ is all about," Jake says. "I’m excited for the song to be a part of this season’s opening weekend."

Fans can preview the clip now at JakeOwen.net. "Days of Gold" is the lead single and title cut from Jake's new album, due out December 3.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Ex-Ramones Drummer's First Solo Album Coming Next Month, Hear the First Single Now

DC-Jam RecordsAt age 55, one-time Ramones drummer Richie Ramone is set to release his first-ever solo album, Entitled.  The project will be available as a digital download on September 17 and then as a CD and vinyl LP on October 8.  The veteran punk rocker not only keeps the pounding beat on the album, but also handles lead vocals.

Fans can get a taste of what Entitled sounds like by visiting Billboard.com, which is featuring an exclusive stream of a song called "Criminal."  The track showcases Ramone's gravelly voice, and also features driving power chords and drumming that's more than a little reminiscent of Richie's old band.

Accompanying Ramone on Entitled are lead guitarist Tommy Bolan, bassist Clare Misstake and drummer/rhythm guitarist Ben Reagan.  Richie tells Billboard about the project, "We put a lot of work in on creating this and we're really proud of it."

Ramone is planning on hitting the road soon to support Entitled, although according to his official website, no dates have been confirmed yet.

Richie played with the Ramones from 1983 until 1987 and was featured on three of the band's studio albums -- 1984's Too Tough to Die, 1986's Animal Boy and 1987's Halfway to Sanity.  He also wrote several songs for the group, including the staple "Somebody Put Something in My Drink."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Sly and the Family Stone Drummer Says Reuniting Full Band Would Take "Something Short of a Miracle"

Legacy RecordingsHigher!, a four-disc compilation celebrating the influential and successful career of Sly and the Family Stone, hit stores on Tuesday.  The expansive collection boasts rare mono masters of many of the pioneering funk group's singles, early solo recordings by frontman Sly Stone, select album tracks, B sides, demos, alternate takes, unreleased cuts and live performances.

While a reunion the group's founding members would be an exciting way to commemorate the release, original Family Stone drummer Greg Errico says such an event is more than a little unlikely.

"You know, it's a toughie," Errico tells Goldmine magazine. "I can say that everyone is alive and could perform, so I guess the possibility exists.  I say it would have to take something short of a miracle."

For several years, Errico has played in an incarnation of the group called, simply, The Family Stone that also features founding trumpet player Cynthia Robinson and saxophonist Jerry Martini.  A few years back, the band also was joined by Sly Stone at several shows, but those gigs were marred by the singer's erratic behavior.

"We tried the Coachella festival [in 2010]," recalls Errico, "but it wasn't a good experience."

He adds that a promoter has offered "millions of dollars" to get the original group back together for a one-off concert in Japan.  Errico notes that if such a show ever came to fruition "there would be all kinds of yin and yang pulling this way and that way," but he certainly would be interested in participating.

According to The Family Stone's official website, the group currently has one confirmed public concert on its upcoming schedule, a performance this Friday in Columbus, Ohio.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Death Cab for Cutie to Release "Transatlanticism" 10th Anniversary Reissue in October

Barsuk.comNow that Ben Gibbard has finished celebrating the ten-year anniversary of The Postal Service, his collaboration with electronic artist Jimmy Tamborello, the singer has turned his attention to another milestone: the 10th anniversary of the release of Death Cab for Cutie’s fourth studio album, Transatlanticism.

The band has just announced that they'ill release a special reissue of the album, titled Transatlanticism -- Tenth Anniversary Edition, this fall. The package features the original album, along with a second disc that includes previously-unreleased demos of each song, recorded during the Transatlanticism sessions.

Transatlanticism -- Tenth Anniversary Edition will be available at all the usual digital outlets and on vinyl starting October 29. You can pre-order the double-disc vinyl edition of the release now at Barsuk.com.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Tyler Farr Will Let You Hear New Music in Exchange for Your Instagram Photos

Sony Music NashvilleTyler Farr is offering to give fans a sneak peek at a few tracks on his upcoming album, Redneck Crazy, in exchange for their Instagram photos.

Tyler is asking people to snap pictures inspired by his song titles, including "Dirty," "Makes You Wanna Drink" and "Chicks, Trucks and Beer," and submit them to Instagram with the designated hashtag for each song. The three songs with the most photos submitted will be unlocked at Tyler's website on September 9.

Tyler has already posted a photo of himself on a boat with pals Lee Brice and Jerrod Niemann for his song, "Wish I Had a Boat."

Redneck Crazy will be in stores September 30 featuring the gold-certified title cut.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Stone Temple Pilots with Chester Bennington Reveal Release Date, Track List for "High Rise" EP

Play Pen/ADAStone Temple Pilots have confirmed the release date for their debut EP with new frontman Chester Bennington of Linkin Park.  High Rise will arrive at all the usual outlets on October 8.

In addition, the band unveiled the track list for the forthcoming EP.  High Rise will feature a total of five cuts: "Black Heart," "Same on the Inside," "Cry Cry," "Tomorrow" and the group's recently released single, "Out of Time."

You'll get your chance to hear tracks from High Rise performed live when STP hits the road for a North American tour next week.  That outing kicks off this Wednesday, September 4, at the Sands Bethlehem Events Center in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.  Filter will support the group on select dates.  Visit StoneTemplePilots.com to view the full itinerary.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Ted Nugent's Wife Arrested While Allegedly Carrying Gun at Texas Airport

Andrew Spear for The Washington PostTed Nugent's wife Shemane apparently shares her husband's interest of firearms.  A source tells ABC News that Mrs. Nugent was arrested Thursday morning at Dallas-Ft. Worth international airport after allegedly attempting to carry a gun through airport security.

The gun was discovered when her carry-on was X-rayed.  Screening of passengers was temporarily suspended while local law enforcement responded.

A spokesman for Dallas-Ft. Worth International Airport's Department of Public Safety confirmed that his agency had arrested a person named Shemane Ann Nugent, who was processed through the airport's holding facility before being released during the afternoon.

It's not known if Nugent was with his wife at the time of her arrest, although it seems unlikely.  He played a concert in Tucson, Arizona, on Wednesday and was scheduled to perform in Ramona, California, this evening.

Shemane is Nugent's second wife and has been married to the guitar great since 1989.  The couple have one child together, a son named Rocco.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Nazareth Singer Dan McCafferty Announces Retirement from Performing Because of Lung Ailment

NazarethDirect.co.ukSome sad news to report for Nazareth fans: The band's frontman, Dan McCafferty, is retiring from the stage after struggling with a health issue that has made it very difficult for him to perform live.

A message posted Wednesday on Nazareth's official website announces, "We sadly have to tell you all that Dan has been forced to retire due to ill health.  He suffers from C.O.P.D. (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease).  It has gotten worse lately and after trying to play a festival in Switzerland last weekend Dan found it impossible to continue after performing only three songs."

The announcement further explains that the singer told his band mates in the dressing room after coming off stage "that he couldn't go on any longer."

McCafferty discussed his health troubles and decision to retire in new interview with U.K. magazine Classic Rock.  While a news report from Switzerland claimed that Dan had suffered a stroke, he insisted that "that's completely untrue -- thank goodness and touch wood," adding, "I'm not in hospital in Switzerland at all."

He said of the C.O.P.D he's been fighting, "it's been getting worse over the years.  You don't know when it's going to come on, but suddenly you can't breathe."

Commenting about his most recent episode, at the Swiss festival, McCafferty maintained, "If you can't do the job you shouldn't be there -- Nazareth's too big for that."

McCafferty also revealed that another health problem was responsible for his onstage collapse at a concert in Canada last month -- a burst stomach ulcer.  "I thought I'd be fine," he told Classic Rock, "but you lose so much blood when that happens."

Dan also said he expects Nazareth to continue on without him.  "I really hope they get someone else," he declared.  "I'm sure they can."

Even though McCafferty is retiring from performing, Nazareth fans still will get to hear his voice on an as-yet-untitled new album the band recently completed.  The singer also revealed that he still should be able to record more new music, either with Nazareth or as a solo artist.

"To go into a studio and sing isn't like doing a gig," he explained.  "I could always make another record, but getting up to do an hour and three-quarters, and get people to pay money to come and see me -- I can't do that."

As the interview came to a close, McCafferty sent out this message to his fans: "Let everyone know I appreciate they've been there for all these years."

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Fergie and Husband Josh Duhamel Welcome Son, Axl Jack 

Paul Redmond/Getty ImagesTalk about a Sweet Child o' Mine -- Fergie and her husband Josh Duhamel are the parents of a baby boy named Axl Jack. The singer's rep confirms to ABC News Radio that the baby, the couple's first, arrived Thursday, weighing in at 7lbs 10oz.

The couple first announced the pregnancy via Twitter in February.  In recent weeks, Fergie has had a number of baby showers, attended by friends, family and some of her Black Eyed Peas bandmates.

While the world knew that the couple was having a boy, the name was kept under wraps until today. Josh told People magazine not long ago, "Some people may not like it, some people may think it’s really cool, but we don’t really care -- that’s why we’re not telling anybody."

While it's not clear if the name is a tribute to Guns 'n Roses frontman Axl Rose, Fergie is friendly with ex-Guns 'n Roses guitarist Slash; the two even performed the band's hit "Sweet Child O'Mine" at the Super Bowl in 2011.  Fergie's rep says she's not sure if the singer is also buddies with Axl.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

 

Thursday
Aug292013

David Draiman Cancels Remaining Device Tour Dates Due to Complications with Wife’s Pregnancy

Facebook.com/DeviceTheBandBad news for Device fans: the band has just canceled their tour dates through October so that frontman David Draiman can be there for his pregnant wife: model, actress and wrestler Lena Yada.

"Due to complications with his wife's pregnancy, David has chosen to stay close to home until the baby is born,” writes the band in a joint statement on their Facebook page. “All scheduled tour dates between now and the due date of the first week in October have been canceled.”

The announcement was followed by a personal message from Draiman. “Thanks to everyone for the well wishes,” he writes on the group’s Facebook page. “Lena and baby are ok, just a rough time in the home stretch. Needed to be here for them. Thanks for understanding.”

Back in May, Draiman took to his Twitter account to post a sonogram of his unborn son -- the couple's first -- along with a caption revealing that the child’s name will be Samuel Bear Draiman.

Device’s next scheduled concert is set to take place on November 8 at Hovet in Stockholm, Sweden.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Celine Dion Previews New Single "Loved Me Back to Life," Coming Sept. 3

Alix Malka © Feeling Productions Inc.Celine Dion has posted a teaser video for her new single, "Loved Me Back to Life," on her official website, as a "thank you" for all the fans who followed her on her brand-new Twitter account.

The brief clip, which opens with the beeping of a heart monitor along with an animation of a beating heart, shows a make-up free Celine in the studio belting out the tune, which is the title track of her upcoming album.  According to Billboard, the disc is due November 5, and includes a duet with Stevie Wonder on a remake of "Overjoyed," a cover of Janis Ian's "At Seventeen," and two tracks written by Ne-Yo, including the duet "Incredible."

Loved Me Back to Life is Celine's first collection of new English-language songs since 2007.  "I've been gone for six years. There's a time where you think, 'Do you think people will write songs for me?'" she says of her concerns over finding the right material.  However, she says she was pleasantly surprised. "I'm at the mercy of the songs because I don't write my material. But I could not believe what I was hearing," said Celine.

Billboard reports that Celine is currently trying to figure out a way to incorporate "Loved Me Back to Life," which is due Tuesday on iTunes, into her Las Vegas show.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

First-Week Sales Projections Strong for Big Sean's 'Hall of Fame' and Juicy J's 'Stay Trippy'

UKnowBigSean.com; Facebook.com/JuicyJMusicThis week saw the release of two major hip-hop albums: Big Sean’s sophomore album, Hall of Fame, and Juicy J’s long-awaited solo album, Stay Trippy.  And so far, the early word is sales for both projects should be solid.

According to Hits Daily Double, industry insiders forecast Big Sean's project, which includes "Beware" featuring Lil Wayne, to sell between 75,000 to 85,000 copies in its first week.  The estimates are similar to the success of his 2011 debut, Finally Famous, which debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 with first-week sales of 87,000 copies.

Meanwhile, Juicy J is projected to sell around 60,000 to 65,000 units for his major label debut. The sales estimates mark a big improvement from his last solo project, 2009's Hustle Till I Die, which sold fewer than 6,000 copies in its opening week.

In addition to promoting his album, the Memphis rapper has announced on Twitter that he's giving female fans an opportunity to win a $50,000 scholarship for college. You can participate by posting a video utilizing the Juicy J song "Scholarship" and explaining why you’re most deserving of the prize.  Visit WorldStarHipHop.com to learn more.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Mario Issues "Fatal Distraction," Second Single from New Album

Facebook.com/MarioAs promised, Mario has released "Fatal Distraction" as the new single off his upcoming album, Evolve, due out this fall.

"Visions of making love to you all in my head/Don’t want to wait/Can’t concentrate," he sings on the mid-tempo tune, which has been posted on his official SoundCloud page.

Shortly after the track surfaced online, Mario took to his Twitter account to clear up rumors that the song was about his manager's girlfriend. "'Fatal Distraction' isn't about any1 N particular," he tweeted. "I've had many situations where temptation & infatuation meets the reality of bad timing."

Led by the Nicki Minaj-assisted single "Somebody Else," Mario's forthcoming fifth studio effort will be released in October.

In related news, Tuesday marked Mario's 27th birthday. He celebrated the occasion by releasing a video mash-up of his biggest hits just for his fans.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Christina Aguilera Pens 2,200-Word Letter to Fans "From My Heart to Yours"

Business WireUnlike many stars these days, Christina Aguilera isn't constantly on Twitter or Instagram, sharing details of her life with fans.  That's why her decision to suddenly surface with a 2,200-word letter to her fans -- discussing fame, music, love and art -- is so surprising. "I may get quiet at times, but when I do have something to say, I mean every word," she writes.

Titled "From My Heart to Yours...Let There Be Love," the letter was reportedly prompted by a fan campaign to get Christina's unsuccessful 2010 album Bionic the recognition they feel it deserves by organizing a mass buying spree on November 11. 

Christina appears to address this in the letter, writing, "I've heard you guys go to bat for me, speak volumes and continue to defend and encourage what I do as an individual...[but] always remember... Greatness and quality speaks for itself. I never feel the need to defend my own work or myself. Or my purpose behind it."

She adds, "Having nothing to prove to anyone. Just having contentment and peace within ourselves. That's all that's really necessary."

The singer explains that "money and fame have never been the sole driving force of motivation for me to achieve what I have," and adds, "It’s the love of creating, expressing & connecting with myself and others alike through music that has always spoke to my passion and drive to be in this business."

Christina also says that she's "writing a lot these days...on set at the Voice, and on into the night....Pen & paper always at my side."  She adds that she's "enjoying life now more than ever before and discovering new things and ideas every day."

Above all, Christina uses the letter to praise and thank her fans for all the support they've given her over the years, and to give them advice based on her own experiences.

"Thank you for filling my soul with melody and song...lyrics and love...and giving me a safe place I feel comforted in being brave enough to always bare my soul and come from an honest and genuine place," she writes. 

"Every day, we all have a greater and bigger purpose to live and good things to receive," she advises. "It’s our responsibility to ourselves...to those we care about and who care about us, to stay open and keep discovering the new adventures that await us.  I love you all."

You can read her entire letter on Christina's Facebook page or at ChristinaAguilera.com.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Aug292013

Remastered Deluxe Reissues of The Who's "Tommy" Due Out in November

TheWho.comThe Who's Tommy has been reissued in the past, but an even more expansive version of the band's landmark 1969 concept album is being prepared for release this fall.  Come November, the famous rock opera will be available in a four-disc Super Deluxe box set that includes a plethora of previously unreleased studio and live recordings.

The package will feature a newly remastered version of the original album, a CD made up mostly of unreleased Tommy demos recorded by The Who's Pete Townshend, another CD including rare concert performances by the band from 1969, and a state-of-the-art Hi Fidelity Pure Audio Blu-ray disc boasting a new 5.1 surround sound mix of the album.  The live disc includes 18 recordings from a show at the Capital Theatre in Ottawa, Canada, that were saved and archived by Who soundman Bob Pridden, even though Townshend had told him to destroy the tapes of the show.

The Super Deluxe set also comes with a hardcover 80-page book featuring rare photos, various pieces of memorabilia, a replica Tommy poster and a lengthy new essay by Who expert Richard Barnes.

The remastered Tommy also will be available in several other versions, including a standard single CD; a two-CD Deluxe Edition featuring the original album and the live disc; a double-LP vinyl set; a standalone Blu-ray Audio disc; and a number of digital versions.

The updated Tommy releases are scheduled to arrive on November 11.  Visit TheWho.com to check out full details.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio