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Wednesday
Apr162014

Jay Z's Made in America Festival to Run Simultaneously in Philadelphia & L.A.

Life + TimesJay Z has announced plans to take his Budweiser Made in America Festival to both the East and West Coasts this summer.

The rapper and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino have announced that a version of the two-day music event will take place in L.A. during the 2014 Labor Day weekend, August 30-31. An edition of the festival will also be held simultaneously in Philadelphia, which is where the event has taken place since its inception in 2012.

As a result, the dual-city event will now feature a larger line-up and fans will be able to live stream performances from both coasts. Performers and further details will be announced at a later time.

To purchase tickets for Budweiser Made in America 2014, visit MadeInAmericaFest.com.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Is Lady Gaga's Boyfriend Looking to Put a Ring on It?

Interscope RecordsLady Gaga and her boyfriend, Chicago Fire star Taylor Kinney, have been together for two years, so, is he looking to take things to the next level?  According to one report, yes.

Life & Style Weekly claims that Kinney has been "secretly" shopping for an engagement ring for Gaga.  The mag quotes an insider as saying, "Taylor’s been looking at engagement rings for [her] for a couple of months. He has told a couple of his close guy friends that he wants to propose soon."

How soon? Apparently, Kinney wanted to pop the question last month, when Gaga turned 28, but he hadn't found the right bling yet.

"Taylor was considering proposing over her birthday,” dishes the insider. "But he hadn’t found the right ring in time. He wants to find something unique that will suit her personality.” 

But even if Kinney does propose in the near future, Gaga certainly doesn't have time to plan a wedding.  She kicks off her new tour, artRave: The ARTPOP Ball, next month, and currently has dates scheduled through November.  Teasing fans with what they can expect from her new show, she tweeted, "No pressure but if you are attending the artRAVE we suggest in the outfit category you GO FOR IT BECAUSE WERE GOING TO AN ALTERNATE UNIVERSE."

By the way, if Gaga did tie the knot, don't expect to see a magazine spread with photos. In her 2011 ABC special A Very Gaga Thanksgiving, the singer told Katie Couric, "My love life is the only thing I don't talk about. The day I get married, no matter how many helicopters are flying over that chapel, they are not getting one picture."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Usher Plans "Classic" Material for New Album, Says Rico Love

Image credit: Anthony MandlerAlthough he's currently staring as the celebrity coach on NBC's The Voice, Usher is making great strides in the recording process for his eighth studio album.  Rico Love, who is contributing to the project, has revealed what fans can anticipate.

"He's in a great place, and sonically, he's sounding the best he's ever sounded," Rico told MTV News last week. "But he always gets better vocally with each album. I always noticed that about him."

Usher and Love have a long history of collaborating, beginning with Usher's 2004 diamond-selling Confessions.  "Got in the studio with Usher, we did some really amazing records -- really amazing records," Love said. "Me and Usher are really like brothers. Me and Usher will fight, we'll beef and won't speak for a while."

He continues, "It's always a good time when I'm in the studio with Usher, but we really did some classic sh**. Everybody says that, but I feel like I've earned the right to be able to say that and [have] it mean something."

Fans can expect Usher's next album also to include contributions from Pharrell Williams. The set is slated to arrive later this year and will serve as the follow-up to 2012's Looking 4 Myself.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Pete Townshend Says The Who Will Launch 50th Anniversary Tour in Late 2104; New Album a Possibility

Rick Diamond/Getty Images for The WhoThis past October, Who singer Roger Daltey revealed to Rolling Stone that his band was planning to launch a 50th anniversary tour sometime in 2015, but now guitarist/songwriter Pete Townshend is reporting that the trek will get under way a bit earlier.  Townshend tells Billboard that the outing will start around Christmastime in the United Kingdom and then will make its way to North America next year.

"It will be a world tour," explains the 68-year-old rocker.  "I'm not crazy about going on the road, but I'm in good shape and once I start doing it -- and I'm still very good at it -- I'll take some pleasure from it."  The trek is expected to be the band's last major tour.

Meanwhile, Pete reports that he's finally hoping to put together a new Who studio album, which would be a follow-up to 2006's Endless Wire.

"I'm trying to [look] through my 20,000 hours of complete and utter disorganized music [to find possible songs]," he says. "I'll be pulling some songs out of [his long-in-the-works project] 'Floss' to give to Roger to see if we've got enough to make an album."  He adds, "It might be a big waste of time, but I'm hoping there will be an album."

Reflecting on the tour that will mark his band's half-century-long career, Townshend tells Billboard that although he's prepared for it, the trek comes at a transitional period in his life.

"I'll be 69 in May and all my friends are getting ill or dying," he points out.  "I knew it would happen.  I will be happy if I give people something that makes fans happy.  It takes some great planning and I hope it opens up other things that we can avail ourselves of."

As previously reported, outside of his work with The Who, Townshend has co-written and recorded a new song titled "It Must Be Done" that will get its premiere on the April 30 episode of the FX espionage-drama series The Americans, which airs at 10 p.m. ET/PT.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

"Frozen" Marks 10th Week at #1, Pharrell Rebounds to #2

Walt Disney PicturesThe big freeze continues on the Billboard album chart, as the Frozen soundtrack passes its 10th non-consecutive week at #1.

Billboard reports that in the SoundScan era, which dates back to 1991, only 11 albums have spent that many weeks at #1.  Four of those 11 have been soundtracks: Frozen, The Lion King, The Bodyguard and Titanic.  The Frozen soundtrack has also passed the two million mark in sales; it's now sold 2.1 million copies.

Elsewhere on the chart, Pharrell Williams' album G I R L has now rebounded to #2 on an 18 percent sales increase.  The "Happy" hitmaker has been everywhere over the past few weeks, from Good Morning America and Saturday Night Live, to CBS' Sunday Morning and Oprah's OWN network.  The album originally debuted at #2 when it came out back in March and has been in the top 10 ever since. 

Now the bad news: Pharrell's album has also posted the lowest weekly sales total for a #2 album in the entire SoundScan era. It moved just 29,000 copies in the past week.  Frozen, by comparison, sold 133,000 copies last week.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Taylor Swift Posts Video Blog Documenting Super-Fan Gena Gabrielle's Bridal Shower

Instagram via Gena GabrielleTaylor Swift has posted a video blog of her weekend trip to Ohio to attend her super-fan Gena Gabrielle's bridal shower. Taylor documented the entire visit including the moment she surprised Gena with a handmade, framed sign, a Kitchen Aid mixer, fine cookware and homemade chocolate chip cookies among other items.

Gena got more than 100 text messages from friends and family once word got out Taylor was at the bridal shower. Even though Taylor is 24 years old, this is the first bridal shower she's ever attended.

Taylor ended the video with a message to Gena saying, "Thank you for inviting me to your bridal shower, and for me into your life. (Since 2007!!!)."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Dierks Hitting Both Coasts to Film a Video and Support His Wife in the Boston Marathon

Photo Credit: Nino MunozDierks Bentley is hitting both coasts this week. First up, he's headed out to Los Angeles to film the video for his latest single, "Drunk on a Plane." After that shoot wrap, Dierks flies back across the country to cheer on his wife, Cassidy, in the Boston Marathon on Monday, April 21.

Dierks tweeted his plans for the week along with the hashtag #BostonStrong in honor of those affected by the bombing at last year's race.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Coldplay Streams Behind-the-Scenes "Magic" Video

Parlophone RecordsHow did Chris Martin levitate in the new Coldplay video? The director of the clip, Pete Ohs, doesn't want fans of the band to lie awake at night wondering -- so he's put together a little behind-the-scenes look at the magic behind the "Magic" video.

In the four-and-a-half minute compilation, Martin fools around with the cast, tries out magic tricks and is pulled upward by wires. The director frets about time, the sun setting and everyone looking the way they're supposed to. Despite whatever separation Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow might have been negotiating at the time of the production, Martin seems relaxed and happy.

The behind-the-scenes "Magic" video can be viewed on Coldplay's YouTube channel.

"Magic" is the first single from Coldplay's new album Ghost Stories. The album features nine tracks and is scheduled to arrive in stores and digital outlets on May 19. An exclusive deluxe edition being offered by Target will include three bonus tracks.  If you pre-order the album now on iTunes, you'll receive an instant download of "Magic."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

AC/DC Confirms Guitarist Malcolm Young Stepping Away Due to Illness, but Band Will Go On

Columbia RecordsAC/DC has confirmed that while the band is not retiring, guitarist Malcolm Young is in fact suffering from a health crisis that will force him to step away from the band.

"After forty years of life dedicated to AC/DC, guitarist and founding member Malcolm Young is taking a break from the band due to ill health. Malcolm would like to thank the group's diehard legions of fans worldwide for their never-ending love and support," reads a statement from the band released Wednesday. "In light of this news, AC/DC asks that Malcolm and his family's privacy be respected during this time.  The band will continue to make music."

Frontman Brian Johnson, tells Wednesday's edition of London's Telegraph newspaper, "We are definitely getting together in May in Vancouver.  We're going to pick up some guitars, have a plonk, and see if anybody has got any tunes or ideas. If anything happens, we'll record it."

AC/DC's last album, 2008's Black Ice, was a huge success, and the tour that followed was one of the highest-grossing in history, according to Billboard.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

"American Idol" Season 13's Youngest Contestant Gives Advice, Reveals Which Champ Would Make Her Lose Control 

Frank Micelotta/FOXMalaya Watson, the Michigan teen who was eliminated from American Idol last week, was this season's youngest contestant, and the second-youngest ever to reach the live shows, after season 10's Lauren Alaina.  While she admits that the Idol experience is "a lot harder than it looks," the 16-year-old says she'd still encourage other young people to try out, with one condition: your grades have to be good.

Speaking to ABC News Radio, Malaya says, "From the outside in, [American Idol] looks like so much fun, but then when you're in show business, you notice all the details of everything. It's a lot. It's a whole lot!"  That's why any kid who wants to try out has to make sure they'll be able to simultaneously handle both their schoolwork and all the Idol commitments.

Asked if young teens like her should audition for the show, Malaya tells ABC News Radio, "If their school is good and they have time on their hands, then yeah, if that's something they want to do." But, she warns, "Don't do it while you got all this debt, and your grades look terrible, because then you're going to be bombarded with all this stuff plus American Idol."

"You should do it when you're really comfortable with yourself and what you're doing, because that's the best time to do stuff," she adds.

While Malaya says that she grew considerably as a person and as a performer, thanks to being thrown headfirst into the grown-up world of Idol, she says that the rest of the finalists also have gotten much better since they started on the show. 

"Trust me, if you knew everybody...everybody has improved in their own ways," she tells ABC News Radio. "So, there's no specific person that's in the lead. Everybody has just grown from that point to now."

Helping the contestants grow last week was American Idol season seven champ David Cook, who worked with the finalists as a mentor.  Malaya says she'd like to see David appear on the show more often in that role.

"Oh yeah, he'd be a good mentor because he's, like, honest with all his opinions," she tells ABC News Radio. "He's very helpful and the man won, so he knows what he's talking about! He knows the highs and the lows about American Idol."

But as much as she liked David, there's another former Idol winner who Malaya would have killed to work with.  "Fantasia. Oh my God!" she gushed. "I would really pee on myself!"

American Idol returns Wednesday night with a new theme: Competitors' Pick.  For the first time in the show's history, each finalist will select a song for their fellow finalists to perform.  Each contestant will therefore get a list of six songs from which to choose.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Country Star Trivia

Comstock/ThinkstockWhat is the title of Kenny Chesney's most recent studio album? ANSWER: Life on a Rock.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Erica Campbell Confirmed for McDonald's Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour 

Courtesy of Erica Campbell's Instagram

Erica Campbell has been tapped to host and perform during McDonald's upcoming Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour, kicking off later this summer.

The gospel singer, formerly of Mary Mary, will be joined by comedian Jonathan Slocumb. Concertgoers also can expect performances by 2014 Stellar Award-winners Anthony Brown & Group TherAPy, the renowned Mississippi Mass Choir and gospel star Uncle Reece, among others.

"I am so thankful and honored to be chosen not only to host the tour, but to perform alongside other gospel greats," said Campbell in a statement. "The tour will definitely be filled with uplifting music, laughter and an overall good time for everyone."

The free summer concert series runs from May 22 through July 25, making stops in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Los Angeles, Philadelphia  and Washington, D.C., among other cities.

To score free passes, visit 365Black.com.

Here are the dates for the Inspiration Celebration Gospel Tour:

5/22 -- Philadelphia, PA, Mount Airy COGIC
5/23 -- Washington, D.C., Ebenezer AME Church
6/5 -- Charlotte, NC, The Park Church*
6/6 -- Raleigh, NC, Wake Chapel Church
6/7 -- Greensboro, NC, Mount Zion Baptist Church*
6/19 -- Jackson, MS, Greater Bethlehem Temple Church
6/20 -- Memphis, TN, New Salem Baptist Church
6/27 -- Detroit, MI, Greater Grace Temple
6/28 -- Chicago, IL, Chicago Gospel Music Festival – Ellis Park
7/9 -- Atlanta, GA, Full Gospel Baptist Conference – Georgia World Congress Center
7/24 -- Los Angeles, CA,City of Refuge Church
7/25 -- Oakland, CA, Craneway Pavilion

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Lorde Wonders If People Will Still Like Her When She's 25 

ABC/Lou RoccoMuch has been made of the fact that Lorde has managed to accomplish all that she has at such a young age.  But the 17-year-old star from New Zealand says she sometimes wonders if people will still think she's so great when she hits the ripe old age of, oh, say, 25.

Speaking to Elle.com, Lorde, born Ella Yelich-O'Connor, says, "I think a lot about mortality, and I just get way too in my head about it. Since I started making music a lot was made of how old I was and it made me think about, 'What happens when I’m 25? Will people still like what I'm doing? Is it still important if I’m not this hyper-youthful being?'"

"It’s stupid," she admits. "I know I’m being silly. But I can’t help it. It’s just one of those things. I’ll get over it."

Lorde is also concerned with keeping her head on straight as her enormous fame grows.  Noting that a year ago, most people didn't know who she was, she tells Elle.com, "I guess it has been fast. But I don’t feel like it’s moving faster than I’m taking it in. I feel very on track with it."

She adds, "A lot of things, like playing Coachella, feel a lot more normal and comfortable now that we’ve had a lot of experiences that could be considered a big deal. But I have an awesome team who help me not burn out and die. And I always have someone from my family on the road with me."

Lorde's tour continues this week with shows in Las Vegas and Phoenix, and she'll return to Coachella this weekend for the music festival's second weekend.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Saliva Singer Reveals the Stories Behind New Songs in Web Video Series

Rum Bum RecordsSaliva has launched a web video series in which the band is previewing and discussing each track from it's forthcoming album, Rise Up

The first two episodes are up on CraveOnline now -- one for the album's lead single and title track, another for the album's second track "She Can Sure Hide Crazy."

"It was written about one of the members' ex-wives," says frontman Bobby Amaru of "She Can Sure Hide Crazy." "The stories he had, man, just made the lyrics very easy."

More webisodes are expected in the near future. Rise Up, which arrives on April 29, will be Saliva’s first album since Under Your Skin in 2011.

In the meantime, Saliva continues a lengthy tour Wednesday night with a show at the Whiskey A Go-Go in Hollywood, CA. For a complete list of dates, go to the band’s official website

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Jake Owen Teams Up with Discover Boating to Present the Days of Gold Tour

RCA NashvilleJake Owen's Days of Gold tour is designed to give fans the experience of being on the water, so it's only natural the Discover Boating campaign has signed on as the trek's presenting tour sponsor. Jake will share his own stories of boating in the organization's Stories of Discovery video series as part of the tour.

Jake says, "People boat to get away. The same way people come to our concerts. People like to get away from reality sometimes and as real as this beautiful land of ours is, being out on a boat can take you away to a different sort of reality."

The Discover Boating campaign is presented by the Recreational Boating Industry. More information is available at DiscoverBoating.com. To see where Jake is playing next, visit JakeOwen.net.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Chicago to Unveil Innovative New Album This Summer

Chicago Records IIChicago will return this summer with a new album called NOW – also known as Chicago 36.  The project was put together on a mobile recording system called The Rig, which was spearheaded by longtime trumpet player Lee Loughnane, in hotel rooms and other locations across the country while the band was on tour. 

Engineer Hank Linderman acted as coordinating producer for the album, which features 10 tracks.  Chicago already released several of the tunes as digital singles over the last several months.

NOW will arrive, appropriately enough, on the 4th of July and will be available in five different formats.  The biggest one will set you back 98 dollars and will include the CD with a six-panel digipak, a full-color lyric book, a t-shirt, a mug and other goodies.  For more information, or to pre-order the new disc, visit the official Chicago website.

Here is the track listing for Chicago NOW XXXVI:

"NOW"
"More Will Be Revealed"
"America"
"Crazy Happy"
"Free at Last"
"Love Lives On"
"Something’s Coming, I Know"
"Watching All the Colors"
"Nice Girl"
"Naked in the Garden of Allah"
"Another Trippy Day"

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Brian Johnson Denies AC/DC Retirement Rumors, Confirms Band Member Has "Debilitating Illness"

BMGSo the truth is, AC/DC is not retiring, but one member of the band is indeed ill.  That's according to frontman Brian Johnson, who tells Wednesday's edition of London's Telegraph newspaper, "We are definitely getting together in May in Vancouver.  We're going to pick up some guitars, have a plonk, and see if anybody has got any tunes or ideas. If anything happens, we'll record it."

Johnson's statements contradict growing rumors this week that AC/DC is retiring because of the band members, rumored to be guitarist Malcolm Young, is ill, with some reports claiming he's recently suffered a stroke that's left the 61-year-old unable to play, or to play well. 

Johnson will only confirm that someone in the band is ill.  "One of the boys has a debilitating illness, but I don't want to say too much about it," says the singer.  "He is very proud and private, a wonderful chap. We've been pals for 35 years and I look up to him very much."

AC/DC's last album, 2008's Black Ice, was a huge success, and the tour that followed was one of the highest-grossing in history, according to Billboard.

"AC/DC is such a tight family," Johnson tells the Telegraph.  "We've stuck to our guns through the eighties and nineties when people were saying we should change our clothes and our style. But we didn't and people got it that we are the real deal."

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Miley Cyrus Scraps Tonight's Concert in St. Louis: "I'm Miserable"

RCA RecordsAfter canceling her show in Kansas City at the last minute following her hospitalization for a severe allergic reaction to antibiotics, Miley Cyrus has now scrapped her show Wednesday night at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

On Twitter, Miley wrote, "I can't get a hold of my team because it is so early so I want to be the one to tell my fans especially the ones trekking to get there. the hospital is sayin i wont b released today therefore Im not going 2 make it 2 St Louis. Im so sorry but somethings are outta my control."

She also took the opportunity to respond to criticism about her hospital stay.  In an apparent riposte to suggestions that she might not be as sick as reported, she wrote, "humans can b so selfish. if any1 thinks id rather b layin n a hospital bed than doing what i love on stage theyre f*** LAME. im miserable."

TMZ reports, meanwhile, that Miley was taking the antibiotics to which she reacted badly because she had become run down due to lack of sleep and too much partying, both caused by her being distraught over the recent death of her beloved dog, Floyd.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Nashville Notes

Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockBrad Paisley has signed on guest star on the season 11 finale of CBS's Two and a Half Men on May 8, according to TV Guide. His wife, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, is guest-starring on a multi-episode story arc this season.

Dolly Parton will release a limited seven-inch blue vinyl single on Record Store Day this Saturday at independent record stores. The single features the new songs "Blue Smoke" and "Home."

Kenny Chesney tweeted a picture from the recording studio where he's working on his new album this week. We'll keep you posted on when to expect that new music.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr162014

Dan + Shay Bonded Over Music and Horror Movies

Warner Music NashvilleDan + Shay's Dan Smyers and Shay Mooney met at a party just over a year ago, and they've been hanging out together making music ever since.

Shay tells ABC News Radio, " I think the reason that this whole thing has worked out is we have that mutual respect musically and just as people. We like hanging out and that's kind of how it started out."

In addition to making music together, Dan and Shay love watching movies during their downtime on the road. Shay's a huge fan of comedies like Anchorman, while Dan prefers blockbusters like The Dark Knight Rises. They find some middle ground on horror movies though.

Dan says, "We're always like, 'You wanna watch a horror film?' That's our thing. But I love The Ring. That's a scary one. It still holds up. I'm still terrified of that one."

Shay adds, "We'll have to watch The Ring pretty soon. We're actually gonna screen it instead of performing. We're just gonna watch The Ring. It's gonna be fun."

In all seriousness, Dan + Shay will be singing songs from their just-released debut album, Where It All Began, Thursday night in Huntsville, AL.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

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